Nicole Zimmerman

Nicole Zimmerman

Nicole Zimmerman

Lives In

Petaluma, California


  • University of San Francisco
  • University of California, Santa Cruz


  • Travel

  • Nicole R. Zimmerman, born in São Paulo, Brazil and raised (mostly) in Northern California, is a queer Bay Area–based travel journalist, copywriter, and essayist. 
  • Nicole has written for Viator/Tripadvisor, Hipcamp, Grove Collaborative, Insider, Made Local Magazine, and the Los Angeles Times. Her work appears in anthologies like The Best Women’s Travel Writing and in numerous literary journals including Creative Nonfiction and The Rumpus. 
  • Nicole holds an M.F.A. in Writing and is a certified workshop leader in the Amherst Writers & Artists (AWA) method. Her writing has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best American Essays.


Nicole spent her first 2 ½ years in Brazil and boarded her first international flight at the age of 10 months. It took her several decades to return to her birth country, where she studied Portuguese while living with a host family, danced the samba, and traveled solo around Salvador da Bahia, then returned to volunteer in Rio de Janeiro and parade in Carnival (featured in the Los Angeles Times’ Ultimate Guide to the World).

An AFS exchange student to Thailand during high school, Nicole values cultural immersion and nature-based adventure. “Rite of Passage,” about skydiving in New Zealand, appeared in The Best Women’s Travel Writing; "Please Don’t Climb: Controversy at the Heart of Australia" about the ban on Uluru, appeared in About Place Journal. She has worked as a freelance copywriter for Hipcamp and Viator, a Tripadvisor company.

Nicole was a 2019–20 recipient of the Discovered Awards for Emerging Literary Artists, a program produced by Creative Sonoma and funded, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts. She lives with her wife on a sheep farm north of the Golden Gate where she is working on a memoir in essays entitled Just Some Things We Can’t Talk About.


Nicole earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from U.C. Santa Cruz with a double major in Women’s Studies and Anthropology. She holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Writing from the University of San Francisco where she received a merit scholarship in Nonfiction. An AWA Affiliate, Nicole leads women's writing workshops using the Amherst Writers & Artists method.

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