A travel enthusiast with a passion for the outdoors, Codie Richards has traveled extensively throughout the United States, Africa and the Caribbean. Determined to work in a field that would fuel her passion, Codie recently joined Elm Grove Travel in May 2014. This year she will be joining us in Zion as she continues exploring the world.

1.Tell us a bit about your background. What made you want to become a travel agent?
I have had a passion for traveling for as long as I can remember. To me, it is so important to learn about the various areas of the world as well as the different cultures within those areas. I was excited to find a job that allows me to encourage others to break out of their comfort zone and see what the world holds outside of their hometown.

What’s the most rewarding part about your job?
The most rewarding part of my job is when a client returns from a trip and tells me about their life changing travel experience. In that moment, I feel so grateful that I was able to assist in the planning of that experience.

Favorite place you’ve ever traveled and what excites you most about this part of the world?
The toughest question of all! I have so many favorite areas, but one of the best is Cape Town, South Africa. It is an area packed full of history and culture. It is such a diverse area with city, mountains and ocean. Really has something for everyone. I love going to areas where I can learn something new, and I left Cape Town knowing so much more than when I first arrived.
Featured Travel Agent Codie Richards in South Africa
What are the five must-do’s while traveling in Cape Town?
When you go to Cape Town, you must hike up Lion’s Head in the evening and watch the sunset from the top! You should also go to Robben Island, visit one of the many incredible wineries, go on a safari, and hike to the top of Table Mountain.

Tell us about your craziest travel adventure.
I took a travel course in Costa Rica, and we stayed in a biological station in the rain forest. We were in the company of howler monkeys, cock roaches, iguanas, fire ants, and many other exotic species! One day we did a long hike that involved crossing more than twenty rivers, encountering a Fer-De-Lance (poisonous snake), and scaling steep hills that required a rope. It was definitely an adventure and the trip of a lifetime.

Which Trek Travel trip is top on your bucket list and why?
I’m so excited to go on the Zion Long Weekend trip this year! After that, I would love to go to Spain. I have always wanted to go to there to teach English as a second language, and I think getting to know the area by bike first would be incredible!
How long have you been riding bikes?
I’ve been riding bikes since I was a little girl, but competitively since I was 15.

Tell us about your best day on a bicycle.
My mom and I love biking together, so the best days are always with her by my side. A few summers ago we both had the day off and took a long ride through Kettle Moraine State Forest. The views were gorgeous, and we stopped at a nearby lake for a picnic and swim. We didn’t have anywhere else to be that day, so we could truly enjoy the ride at whatever pace we wanted.

Do you have an especially memorable travel story you find yourself telling time and time again?
My family and I used to go to Canada every year and stay on an island to fish and enjoy the outdoors. Canada has the most beautiful scenery. One evening all five of us were out in the boat when it started to rain. Instead of going inside, we huddled under the umbrellas and kept fishing. When the clouds cleared, there was the most stunning double rainbow. It is a simple memory, but a special one.

Featured Travel Agent Codie Richards