All posts tagged: world travel

How I Afford My Travels, and How You Can Too.

Most people will be alarmed at how my bank account balance fluctuates every month. It holds the biggest clue to how I afford my travels; I choose to take risks. I am 24, and choose not to be disillusioned by the ‘need’ to save every penny for something better and bigger in the future. I choose not be dismayed by thoughts of a very rainy day either. I choose to take it as it comes (and to take it when it doesn’t come), the money that is. I choose to live in my today, instead of dreaming about what may be in the future. That might sound foolish to some, at best naive, but through these five mantras that have afforded me 99% of my travels, I shall strive to prove otherwise. 1. Money won’t save itself. As much as I wish I had a secret magic formula for each time people asked me how I find the money to travel so much, I don’t. Not even a grand inheritance. And no, no rich uncle to sponsor my …

An Empty Backpack.

The way you travel defines who you are. Perhaps that’s why they say that the best way to get to know a person is to travel together. I first heard of the Empty Backpack concept in George Clooney’s movie, Up in the Air. It professes to traveling & living light, without unnecessary emotional or  physical baggage. Here’s sharing some of my Up in the Air inspiration with you: Imagine for a second that you’re carrying a backpack. I want you to feel the straps on your shoulders. Feel ‘em? Now I want you to pack it with all the stuff that you have in your life. You start with the little things, the things on shelves and in drawers the knick-knacks, the collectibles. Feel the weight as that adds up. Then you start adding larger stuff… clothes, table-top appliances, lamps, linens…your TV…The backpack should be getting pretty heavy now. And you go bigger. Your couch, bed, your kitchen table. Stuff it all in there. Your car, get it in there. Your home, whether it’s a studio apartment …

Halong Bay: Misty. Mysterious. Magical.

You’ve seen calm seas and you’ve seen sprawling mountains. Put the two together, throw in some evasive mist, dig up some extravagant caves, and shake a magic wand. You might get something close to Halong Bay in Northeast Vietnam. Over 3000 limestone structures arise out of the waters, as though the heavens are really beneath the surface and gracing the earth, forming a spectacle of beauty, mystery and magic, like you’ve never witnessed before. I cruised along these waters of the Gulf of Tonkin (Halong Bay) on the Imperial Junk, one of the many mid-range options to be part of the land on water phenomenon. Imagine sitting on the deck of the cruise, gazing at scores of limestone structures, each with it’s own touch of perfection, looking as stunning at sunrise as at sunset. Each cruise provides food (quality is proportional to the price of the cruise), water activities like kayaking and limestone cave exploration. The limestone cave open for exploration is decked up in lights, and although the ambiance is artificial, the intricate stalactites and …

Where Will 2011 Take You?

“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” – Martin Buber There’s something liberating about scanning a world map and choosing where your next journey could take you. As we round off 2010, the time is just right to put together a travel list for 2011. Get inspired by Lonely Planet’s top 10 countries, cities and value destinations in 2011. Choose atleast one of your dream destinations and plan your other journeys around it. Remember, no time will be better to go than now. Be realistic about your budget and travel dates, but don’t be constrained by either. Granny always says, where there’s a will there’s a way 🙂 Leave room to be impulsive. You follow enough rules at school & at work. The beauty of travel is that there are no rules. What’s on your travel list for 2011?

Yarets’ World Trip

On Friday night, I met a guy called Vladimir Yarets. He was standing next to a motorbike when I saw him, with a widespread display of pictures on the ground. These were pictures from around the world, from Yarets’ journey which started in May 2000 in his hometown in Russia. For 8 years, he has been traveling everywhere he can go, on his motorbike. He’s done all of Europe, Australia and parts of Asia so far, more than 40 countries in all. Unlike most globetrotters, Yarets is deaf and mute. At sixty-something (I guess), he wasn’t at all disappointing for a man living out his dream, everyday. He looked excited as lots of people stopped by to look at his display and dropped money into his helmet. There was this look about him which I can’t seem to put down in words. It was somewhat a mixture of pride, enthusiasm, tranquility, even happiness. It’s not everyday that you meet someone so daring, so brave and so inspiring. It makes you evaluate your own dreams, your …