Meet: Kimberly Daley

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Kimberly Daley

Legendary adventure travel company MT Sobek has led pioneering tours across the far-reaching corners of the globe for five decades, opening eyes and minds through profoundly personal connections with nature and culture. This year, Chief Executive Officer Kimberly Daley is shepherding the introduction of wellness trips that pair yoga and meditation with moderate to challenging activities like hiking, surfing, and paddle boarding—all aimed at active adventurers. MT Sobek aims to inspire their travelers to get outside into nature and take the first step to a wellness-enriched life.

Wander: What does the perfect Sunday look like to you?
Kimberly: My twins jumping on us in bed early in the am to wake us up, followed by some vinyasa yoga out on the deck, and a green smoothie. Jump into the already packed car for a day outside hiking with my family, possibly a bike ride. Sandwiched in the middle is a picnic halfway through our adventure. We end back at home flopped on the couch or porch. Did I add – no wifi access, that’s wellness on any day!

Zany (or strange!) travel experience you can share?
When the man behind me on the plane in row 3D, put his non-groomed bare feet through the seat onto my armrest in the window seat. Regardless of whether we were in 1st class or the back of the plane, coming from St. Lucia or Stockholm, it was beyond me. I have a picture!

We’re having a potluck dinner. What do you bring?
Why the drinks of course! Nine times out of ten, everyone else is much better at cooking than I so I’ll bring what I know will spread joy to all, which are libations to match the cocktail part of the evening, and dinner. My other favorite thing to do at potluck dinners is to inspire storytelling, it works great to bring a list of topics or make it a contest like “The Moth” to increase participation! People love to regale friends with their strangest travel experience, for instance. Or when they first fell in love with their partner.

Go-to comfort at the end of the day?
Without question, I immediately change into yoga pants, a t-shirt, flip flops and a clean, refreshed face! On a cool night, I cozy up with my kids under our thick blanket and enjoy a fire while reading to each other. Pure bliss.

What’s in your carry on?
Usually everything I need. Key items: my Bose noise-canceling headphones, extra pair of socks for the flight, collapsible water bottle, hydration spray & lip balm, laptop with plugs and universal charger, earplugs and eye mask for long flights, disinfectant wipes, an entertainment mag (think US Weekly) countered by an inspirational book, and a pashmina to stay warm.

Best wellness or travel tip?
Always bring workout clothes, no excuses. Exercising helps take the edge off traveling and gets you outside to explore and unplug. Even on a business trip, the best way to get to know a city or area is to do a morning jog. You can wear your running shoes on the plane (remember you will be taking them off to put on your extra-comfy socks), and then put on your yoga app in the morning (I like Boho Beautiful on my iPad. It’s a great way to workout without having to find the gym in the hotel).

What excites you about your company?
That we embody the best antidote for happiness and longevity – getting outside and being well. We practice what we preach, always have – always will!

What do you want your legacy to be?
That I made a difference in people’s lives – those that I work with, partners, travelers, strangers, locals in the places I visit, my family, future generations – and we all had fun while doing it! There’s a quote I keep on my computer monitor right now: “Everything you want is on the other side of fear”, by Jack Canfield. I think that’s important in life… to not be afraid to take risks, try something new, and push beyond your comfort zone. The reason I try to get beyond fear isn’t because I want that to be my legacy, but it’s a characteristic that takes people further than they might go otherwise, and I hope everyone can learn from that. If it is the legacy I leave, I would be very proud.

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