Yuri Awanohara is a photographer, writer, world traveler and travel guide. She is half-Japanese, half-Chinese, but was born in Indonesia and grew up in Hong Kong, Japan, and the United States. Living in Washington, DC, New York, and Los Angeles, she has had Mexican influences for nearly her whole life. After the stereotypical Mexican beach holidays as a child, she began to be interested in Latin American culture. Over the past 15 years, she has mastered speaking Spanish, French, and Portuguese in addition to her native English and Japanese.
While earning her degree in anthropology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her accreditation in photography, she continued to visit Mexico, falling in love with its dense rainforests, crystal-blue waters, never-ending deserts, and the people that inhabit them - and the food they eat. For the past 10 years, she has been traveling constantly, having visited more than 50 countries on every continent other than Antarctica. Her love for Latin America was solidified with three months of volunteer work in Ecuador in 2003, and her total time spent in Latin America is well over 12 months.
Yuri currently works as an independent tour guide in Japan (www.japanforyoutours.com) and Brazil, always plotting her next getaway for a hidden place between Tijuana and Tierra del Fuego. In addition to writing and photography, she loves hiking, cooking, scuba diving and finding glimpses of life that you just can't find in guidebooks.
Her photographs have been published in various publications worldwide, including Schmap Guides to Australia, AMANA Asian Peace and Conflict Media Initiative, and the American Side Saddle Association's books: The Western Sidesaddle and The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of the Sidesaddle.