About Us

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You know that you are close to the meaning of life when you are full of enthusiasm, when you do things with love – Paulo Coelho


Nick en Nienke - The Travel Tester


The Travel Tester is a travel and lifestyle magazine encouraging you to try new things. We LOVE to help you choose authentic, immersive experiences around the world that improve your quality of life. 


This is how we hope to achieve that:

1. Travel & Lifestyle Inspiration

Through our Bucket List, Pinterest Boards and many articles on travel, lifestyle, creativity and business, we hope to give you lots of ideas for activities that help you find happiness and purpose in life. We share everything from practical tips to unusual experiences and challenges – all over the world, or simply in your own backyard.

2. Destination Guides

Whether you decide to travel for just one day, one weekend or one week, we can help you plan your itinerary with our practical destination guides focusing on highlights as well as local favourites. We also have experience in long-term and expat travel, so any questions, please feel free to pick our brains!

3. Product & Service Reviews

Don’t you agree there is just too much choice when it comes to travel planning? What to pack, where to stay and what activities to, it can really drive you crazy. While we believe strongly in experience over possessions, we are proud to share our best (video) tips on accommodation, hotspots, products, services and tours & activities.

4. Support

After visiting over 30 countries, we believe that travel is one of the best things in life, but we also understand that it can sometimes makes you feel a bit lost, alone or uncertain. It still does for us every now and then, even though we’ve both been travelling all our lives. We want you to know that we are here for you and you can always contact us with questions, or simply to have a chat. Let us know when you’re in London to meet up!



Who We Are

We’re Nienke Krook and Nick Vullings, two Dutchies currently living in London. When we met each other in a hostel in Sydney in 2008, little did we know the adventures we would be going on in the years to follow.

We toured New Zealand on a party bus, discovered most of Australia when we lived in Sydney for over two years, hiked a mountain in Nepal, ate heaps of undefinable food in Japan, drank all the wine in Portugal and couldn’t stop looking up in New York (just to name a few memorable things).

Here in London, Nienke spends most of her time in the digital world of travel blogging and Pinterest and Nick changes the skyline working as an architect. But we’re not finished exploring the world, for sure!


Nick en Nienke - The Travel Tester


Happiness. Passion. Creativity.

If there is anything we have learned on the road, it’s that by following our hearts and choosing for the path on which we can learn the most (rather than the smoothly paved one), we push ourselves into reaching a little further and achieving more every day.

And now, after a couple of years working hard to build on our dream life, we finally are able to pick the fruits of our hard labor, so to say. We both have jobs we enjoy, get to see a lot of the world and fill our spare time being creative and doing things we love.

Sure, there are always struggles in one way or another, but we deal with them as they come along and try to stay focused on the end goal: a happy life that we created ourselves. And that’s exactly what we would like for you to achieve as well.


Nick en Nienke - The Travel Tester


Who is Nienke Krook?

Nienke grew up in Diemen-Zuid, The Netherlands (next to Amsterdam) and is the granddaughter of a published travel writer with several books on faraway destinations, lightweight travel & wilderness survival on his name.

With an archaeologist/photographer dad and a cartographer mum, Nienke and her brother have been taken all around Europe (mostly in a trailer tent) since they were little.

Nienke used to be a primary school teacher and is now looking to share her lessons learned travelling with you on this weblog.


Fun Facts:

      1. Nienke is a fond collector of brochures. Nick is not, that’s why she’s busy scanning them all to upload onto the website. There are, however, hundreds and hundreds of them…
      2. While Nienke likes most food, she is really fussy about eggs (only hard boiled) and carrots (only never).
      3. Nienke and her family lived on the Caribbean island of Saint-Martin when she was 7 and again when she was 9.
      4. Being a huge fan of The X-Files and many other Sci-Fi series, seeing a real (alien?) crop circle in a field in South-England years ago was a highlight not to forget.
      5. Having a huge Pinterest addiction, it was only a matter of time before she would turn this hobby into a business. She now manages multiple blogger- and brand accounts, is a public speaker on the topic and founded Mappin Monday, a global Pinterest community, as well as Dream.Pin.Go., a Pinterest website for the tourism industry.


Nick en Nienke - The Travel Tester


Who is Nick Vullings?

Nick grew up in Venlo, The Netherlands and is fluent in Dutch, English, German and his local dialect which Nienke can understand, but probably can never speak properly.

With his older brother & sister and his parents he also travelled in a trailer tent or in hotels around Europe. He also made several study trips in Europe and to Russia with friends from university.

Nick is working as an architect and dreams of building his own house and creating other memorable pieces of architecture, like the new Sydney Opera House, or something simple like that. On The Travel Tester, Nick combines his enthusiasm for architecture, design, being active and travel.


Fun Facts:

      1. Nick spent a semester at the University of Sydney in 2008, the year he met Nienke.
      2. Having discovered meat pies while living in Australia, Nick has perfected the recipe and bakes them often on the weekend.
      3. Nick is very patient. He probably got that from the many hours spend fishing with his dad -and never catching anything.
      4. Since being with Nienke, Nick has spent more time with her overseas than in his home country.
      5. Nick only send 1 Tweet in his entire life. It went viral. Not even Chuck Norris can do that.


Nick en Nienke - The Travel Tester


Let’s Try Something New Today!

But enough about us. What experiences do YOU want to have on your next trip? Do you want to get active? Do you want to find the best places to eat well? Are you looking to learn something? Or perhaps you’re more interested to see art & design? Whatever your reason is for travelling, we’ll make sure to cover it here on The Travel Tester.

We strongly believe that you create your own happiness and that by trying new things, you challenge yourself and will keep on growing as a person. Life moves fast, so be sure to make the most out of it!


In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take.


You can follow us here on the website, chat with us on Facebook or on Twitter, get inspired on Instagram, see our funny videos on YouTube (well, we think they are funny at least), or pin along on Pinterest.

Looking to read more inspiring travel blogs from around the world? We round the best ones up in our weekly Newsletter “The Compass”! Here, we will also bring you our latest updates and other cool news and deals. Don’t miss it:



nlNederlands (Dutch)


  • Hallo Nienke,

    Mijn naam is Lennert van Driel en ik schrijf mijn eindreflectie over de onafhankelijkheid van de reisjournalistiek.
    Momenteel ben ik bezig met een deelvraag over bloggers de digitale reiswereld en met de vraag hoe deze verschillen tov journalisten voor tijdschriften en dagbladen. Zou ik je daarvoor telefonisch kunnen contacten?
    Bij voorbaat dank. Ik zie je respons met genoegen tegemoet.


    Lennert van Driel

  • Nienke,

    Het lijkt me een heerlijke besteding van het leven.
    Wat ik zou willen vragen is hoe je, je leven zo kan inrichten. Dit tav financiën en levensonderhoud.
    is dit dmv verdiensten uit blogs, reisverslagen (wordt je ingehuurd door of werk je namens…).


    • Hoi Michel! Alles wat ik verdien komt direct of indirect via mijn blog en heb ik zelf moeten regelen. Van freelance schrijven voor andere websites, tot betaalde persreizen, gesponsorde berichten, verkopen van foto’s, Pinterest consulting en social media management, spreken op conferenties, het organiseren van blogconferenties, het werken aan andere honderd andere projecten :) Alleen geld met je blog verdienen (advertenties ofzo) is niet te doen, je moet andere inkomstbronnen zien te vinden. Veel netwerken vooral om nieuwe opdrachten binnen te halen! Zodra je je blog als bedrijf gaat zien zal het makkelijker zijn om er geld aan te verdienen en zul je steeds creatiever hierin worden. Succes!

  • Hallo Nienke, via Google kwam ik op jullie blog terecht toen ik aan het zoeken was naar een testreview van een rugzak (Quechua Forclaz 60) waar ik interesse in heb. Volgend jaar ga ik een deel van een pelgrimspad in Zweden / Noorwegen lopen en daartoe moet ik mijn uitrusting gaan uitbreiden. Dank dus bij deze voor de leuke review, die heeft me wel over de streep getrokken om er eentje aan te schaffen. Veel plezier nog met reizen, waar jullie ook zijn en succes met heb blog!

    Niels van Tol
    Niels van Tol recently posted…Dam tot Dam wandeltocht 42kmMy Profile

    • Hey Niels, wat ontzettend leuk om te horen. Daar doen we het voor! Wauw, dat klinkt als een super avontuur dat je gaat maken, we hopen dat je veel plezier van de tas gaat hebben!! Ik (Nienke) heb hem al sinds 2008 en ben er nog steeds tevreden mee. Volgende week gaat hij weer mee naar Amerika :)

  • Hi Nienke,

    It was a pleasure meeting you at WTM !
    I just wanted to touch base with you and to let you know that I am available if need assistance.
    The adventure travel market has ballooned in recent years as more and more people are turning their backs on the beach holidays of old, and opting instead outdoor activities such as, walking, cycling, kayaking or cultural immersion. While many simply don a backpack and hit the road, for those for whom time is a constraint, or travelling alone is a concern, signing up with a small group tour organiser is often the way to go.
    Travelling this way has other important benefits too. With Leading Guests expertise, and contacts in the region, we can offer more interesting, ‘off the beaten track’ itineraries, and can access areas otherwise off limits to the independent traveller.
    You’re welcome to check out our website at


    and our travel agency site


    Please feel free to contact me if you think my company might be able to add value to your business.
    You can reach me at mobile/phone or e-mail.


    Yiannis Kotzianoglou


    mob 0030 6973316616

    twitter @kotzianoglou

    • Haha, thanks Suzi! Most of it is working behind the PC these days, haha, but I love the freedom of working from home and being able to take opportunities as they come along.

  • Hi Nienke and Nick,

    My name is Heather Ballantine Luciani. I’m half Scottish and Norwegian and I married an Italian. My dad is from Scotland and my husband is the first one in his family born here in the US. Although I’ve been to Italy many times and have visited my dad in Malta, I will be traveling to his homeland for the very first time.

    We love to travel and I found your web site through Pinterest while looking for travel tips to Scotland. It looks like you both enjoy life and I look forward to following your blog.


    • Hi Heather! So great to meet you, welcome to the site! I hope you have a wonderful time in Scotland it’s such an amazing place to travel to! Let us know if you have any travel questions we can help you with! Safe travels, Nick and Nienke

  • Hi Nienke,

    Ik organiseer een beurs (over taarten met taarten) en we willen daar heel graag foodtrucks neerzetten. Nu willen we op de flyer een mooie foto neerzetten. Maar die zijn nergens te vinden. Op jouw blog staan hele mooie foto’s van TREK. Zou ik er daar eentje van mogen gebruiken op de flyer? Het is maar als inzetjje.

    Ik hoor het graag!



  • Hoi Nienke,
    Ik heb een prachtige foto van je gezien van een beachhouse in Senigallia. Ik zou deze graag gebruiken voor een e-book wat we willen aanbieden aan onze gasten. Kun je me laten weten of dat mogelijk is?

    Groeten Marion, Mergo Italie (B&B la valle verde)

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