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About Us

KARYN PLANETT

Well, this nutso frenetic wanderlust grabbed me so long ago. And … I’ve never stopped since I scampered up the gangway of the SS Ile de France, sailing from New York to France as a 6-year-old with parents and nanny in tow. That four-month stint as a wide-eyed traveler opened the floodgates of what was to follow. Eight months as a Semester-At-Sea student sailing around the world for the first time.  Ten weeks behind Russia’s “Iron Curtain” to the USSR and the Eastern Block countries in 1969 during the Cold War.  

 
 

KARYN PLANETT

Well, this nutso frenetic wanderlust grabbed me so long ago. And … I’ve never stopped since I scampered up the gangway of the SS Ile de France, sailing from New York to France as a 6-year-old with parents and nanny in tow. That four-month stint as a wide-eyed traveler opened the floodgates of what was to follow. Eight months as a Semester-At-Sea student sailing around the world for the first time.  Ten weeks behind Russia’s “Iron Curtain” to the USSR and the Eastern Block countries in 1969 during the Cold War.  

This resumé launched my career in the travel industry when I landed my first “I can’t believe I get paid to do this” job for Royal Viking Line taking me to more than 100 countries.  With camera and pencil in hand, I continued the chronicling of my travel tales that began as a student.  Honing my writing skills, I authored hundreds of destination articles for the cruise industry for the next 25 years.  Then, when I thought I had finally used up the very last adjective known to mankind, I switched from being a writer who photographed to a photographer who writes.  I began my serious studies with National Geographic photographer Raul Touzon, then Cotton Coulson and Sisse Brimberg, finally wildlife photographer Roy Mangersnes.  

In 2009, my husband Geoff Thompson and I published our first coffee table books for Crystal Cruises (The Mediterranean and Northern Europe).  In 2013, we published Voyages of The World 2002 – 2012, recapping our ten years aboard the world’s first (and still only) residential ship that was our home for a total of 13 years.  

So, I’ve been to somewhere between 150 and 200 countries depending on how you recognize this and that boundary and disputed territory.  I’ve ridden camels in Mongolia and hot air balloons in Namibia, gone drift diving in Aldabra and jumped in the freezing waters of Antarctica. And just recently (in 2015), I swam across the Equator in the middle of the Atlantic in 15,000-feet-deep water with four whales looking on. Oh, it’s been a magical ride.

What’s left, you ask.  Well, everything that’s around the next bend in the road.  After decades of travel under my belt I’ve barely scratched the surface of this glorious world.  And my favorite adventure is the next one to come.    

GEOFF THOMPSON

My husband of many decades.  The “big idea” guy who started his life as an advertising brat, the son of a Proctor & Gamble ad manager /  TV producer. Old Greenwich, Connecticut was home and before we embarked on this life together his world travels took him all the way to the distant shores of … Nantucket.  Geoff launched his own advertising career in New York, then San Francisco to try his hand at copywriting on Levi’s. We met there and got married while both embarked on our careers.  I’m proud that Geoff authored a number of award-winning campaigns including one for Levi’s that Advertising Age named among the “50 Best Of All Time”.  And, he served on the Film Jury at the International Advertising Festival at Cannes.  As FCB’s Worldwide Creative Director, he traveled the world, this time with me in tow.  We got to globetrot to the four corners of the earth, and beyond.  And because he had the “eye”, due to his years of producing TV commercials, it was his job to take care of all the travel videos as the “home video director and photographer”.  He, therefore, has seen much of the world through some sort of a lens.  Geoff claims he missed a lot that way but was forced to look even more deeply at some aspects of the world.  

All this wanderlust and adventure-seeking hit peak performance when we purchased an apartment on the residential ship The World.  For thirteen magical years we lived aboard this ship traveling the world without leaving our “home”.  This groundbreaking experiment in luxury travel and maritime history took us to more than 600 destinations in over 130 countries including off-the-beaten-track destinations like the Arctic, Antarctica, even the Northwest Passage in 2012.  The World was the first large passenger vessel to accomplish this crossing and we were there for the entire adventure.

While we’re not on the road somewhere, we’re enjoying the “turf” portion of our “surf-n-turf” lifestyle at our cattle ranch in Monterey County, California. In our spare time we publish books on destinations, wineries, trophy homes, and the cowboy life that is alive and well on Planett Ranch.