Welcome to the latest in our series of interviews with professional travel bloggers who we feel inspire and excite us to back our bags and see the world. This month we are featuring Nomadic Samuel, who in his twenties worked as an expat teacher in Asia. He has also tried his hand at photography and freelance writing, but says of himself: “I’m a bit of a jack of all trades and a man who wears many hats — the kind of individual that doesn’t like to stay in any one place for any serious length of time.”
Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?
I enjoy all aspects of the three but I’m most certainly a culture vulture more than anything else. I love visiting cultural HUBS and taking the time to properly explore around each area. I find that by being a culture vulture it encourages me to naturally travel slower with greater awareness.
Best accommodation is the ‘best value’ for the lowest cost possible. When I stayed in Battambang I had a modern/clean air-conditioned room with amenities for only $6 a night. It doesn’t get much better than that.
What is your best travel experience and why?
My best travel experience was when I visited India. India is a country unlike any other I’ve visited. I found it to be a full on assault to my senses and I constantly felt stimulated. It seems to be a polarizing place that many either love or hate. I had my share of challenges while travelling in India (especially related to food poisoning) but overcoming obstacles made the trip even more rewarding. I highly recommend taking the trains to anyone who visits India.
What is your worst travel experience and why?
My worst travel experience was when I went to Quito, Ecuador. At the time, there were issues between the military and police clashing with one another over a power struggle. I found the streets in Quito were not safe at the time and people in my hostel were victims of violent crime late at night. I was relieved to get out of there at the time, but I also feel that the city has great potential.
Is there anywhere in the world that you prefer not to travel to and if so why?
No, not really. I wouldn’t visit a country that was experiencing political or internal turmoil, but I would always be open to coming when things settled down. I truly want to see what the world has to offer.
What is the most moving/emotional/spiritual experience you have had whilst travelling?
When I first laid eyes upon Machu Picchu I was in total awe. The build up of just getting there (buses, hiking, cable carts, train, more hiking) really made me appreciate it even more. It’s one of those popular places that truly lives up to the hype. I wish I had of scheduled more than just two days to take it all in.
Which 3 songs would you have as the soundtrack to your travels?
These aren’t necessarily my favourite songs but they sure are related to travel:
What is your ‘dream trip’?
My dream trip would be to do a true around the world adventure spending time on all seven continents. I would expect this trip would span several years and I would relish every moment of it.
If you could travel through time, when and where would you go and why?
I’d be doing things right now. There is no better time than now. I’m thrilled that I’m able to run my websites, keep in touch with family and friends and explore many parts of the world in a safe manner. It’s never been a better time to travel in my opinion.
If you could travel with any celebrity or historical figure who would it be and where would you want to go?
I wouldn’t mind going on a trip with Ewan McGregor. He’s certainly an adventurous sort and I figure with all of the money he’s earned as an actor it would be put to good use on our trip
Recommended holiday reading?
I recommend reading travel blogs! I find that you’ll find information on travel blogs that simply doesn’t exist in guidebooks.
What is your travel motto/mantra?
Travel to enrich your life and experience things you could never experience by being back home.
Name one thing that scares you
I’m afraid of heights. I don’t think I’ll be sky diving any time soon
Name one thing that inspires you
I’m inspired by seeing travellers of all ages going out and having the time of their lives. I’ve seen travellers in their 70s and 80s with the enthusiasm of those less than 1/3 of their age. On the other hand, I’ve seen teenage travellers who are mature beyond their years experiencing what the world has to offer.
What are your best and worst food experiences whilst travelling?
The best food experience I’ve had was in Thailand. I got to take a wonderful Thai cooking course when I was in Chiang Mai where I was able to learn how to make all of my favourite Thai foods. The worst experience was when I was in India and getting sick quite frequently. It’s not pleasant when you’re not certain if what you just ate is going to sit well in your stomach or not.
Greatest travel luxury?
Blazing fast wi-fi! It’s so rare but for a digital nomad it’s a blessing to find it.
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
I would consider teaching at the University level in Asia. In order for me to do that I’d have to upgrade my education to a Masters Degree.
If you could travel with another travel blogger, who would you pick?
I would pick my girlfriend Audrey Bergner (aka That Backpacker). There is nobody I’d rather travel with more than her.