Category: Twipper of the Week (page 1 of 35)

TWIPPER OF THE WEEK

Twipper of the Week: Gunnar Garfors from The Garfors Globe!

Current city: Oslo, Norway – I’m at home between travels

Age: 42

Total countries visited: All

What makes you interesting: I am not all that interesting, but I love sharing travel experiences with others and getting to know locals and fellow travelers, so I am not the worst company for a coffee. I think.

What brands do you love: Any company that can get me from A to B. SAS, Lufthansa and the other airlines of Star Alliance do so brilliantly most of the time.

Best travel advice: Travel with hand luggage only. It is faster, more flexible, makes you seem less like a tourist and is friendlier to the environment. And it is far from impossible, bring washing powder and buy new clothes wherever you go, that is often cheaper than at home anyway. And you get more original clothes.

What destinations are on your bucket list: The most exotic countries of the world. I am currently writing a book about them so I will return to the top 20 of them in the next few months. Let me just say that both São Tomé, Príncipe and the Marshall Islands are among them.

How do you do to stay healthy when you travel: I go running several times a week. It helps me keep fit, and it is a great way of exploring a new neighborhood. You’ll also be surprised how many smiles you see when you run abroad.

Describe your most unique or funniest travel experience: There are hundreds of episodes to pick from, many of which I have written about in my first book “How I Ran Out of Countries”, but what my sister Kjersti and I experienced in Lesotho made me laugh. We were stamped out of Lesotho in the border police shack on the edge of the infamous and feared Sani Pass, on the border between Lesotho and South Africa. The police officers giggled when they saw our tiny rented Fiat, although we didn’t quite understand why. The road there hadn’t been all that bad, despite a lack of pavement and an overdose of goats. It was when we started driving down from the top that we realized what the giggling had been about. As we would have known had we read about Sani Pass on Wikipedia. “It is a notoriously dangerous road, which requires the use of a 4×4 vehicle. This pass lies between the border controls of both countries and is approximately 9 km in length and requires above average driving experience. It has occasional remains of vehicles that did not succeed in navigating its steep gradients and poor traction surfaces, and has a catalog of frightening stories of failed attempts at ascending the path over the Northern Lesotho Mountains.” In Lesotho I was proposed to by a girl from one of the mud hut villages. We were stopped in the mountains, a mother and her two adult daughters were hitchhiking. We drove them to Linakeng, almost an hour away. They told us about farming and tough conditions in the cold mountains. We were however also told that the mother’s husband was the chief of the village. They were grateful for the ride. I got a big hug from the mom, who used the occasion to propose to me on behalf of one of her daughters. The prettiest one, even. A future as chief son in law in the middle of Lesotho was tempting. I would presumably tale over the chief title when my potential father in law would call it a night. The average life expectancy is only 48 years, so a transition of power could happen relatively soon. I showed some interest for the offer. My sister wasn’t equally impressed, and we left without .

Describe the last time you tried something new: I never say no to new opportunities or to try new things. Life is too short for that. It’s not too long since I tried orienteering for the first time. A great way to see and feel the nature, enjoy the fresh air while having to navigate and run or walk at the same time. I am not at all a pro, but I loved it!

What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned from traveling: Never to forget that everyone sees their own hometown and home country as the center of the universe. That is something every traveler should keep in mind. It should help keep any arrogance at bay. Travelling has also given me more input an knowledge about people, places and myself than anything else. Not to travel would be a grave insult to my mind and my intellect.

Next travel destination: I’m off to Cabo Verde (Cape Verde) in a week. That was the last new country I visited, number 198 of 198, so it will always have a special place in my heart.

TWIPPERS OF THE WEEK

Twippers of the Week: Paula and Gordon from Contented Traveller!

Current city: Wollongong, Australia. This is our home by the beach, and we love it. We are only here a few months of each year now that we work as professional travel bloggers. When we are here, we feel as if we are on holiday. Its 8 am in the morning and we will walk across to the beach for coffee. Gordy will go for a surf and I will work on our website in a little café.

Age: 60 and 61.

Total countries visited: 51 (though Math is not my strong suit).

What makes you interesting: For some reason, in an interview we were referred to as ‘Seniorpreneurs.’ We both come from corporate careers and became travel bloggers. Many people want to be like us, ‘when they grow up.’  We love people, and we are good at communicating with them. This transfers when writing for our blog which has won many awards  by keeping our readers informed, and amused at the same time. We ‘keep it real!’

What brands do you love: Merrell, North Face and Icebreaker, because we both love to ski. Apple anything and everything. I was going to name our apartment the iApartment. Panasonic for our camera equipment.

What does “Travel” mean to you: Travel is all about serendipity, and it’s those random events you cannot plan for. Meeting local people, eating local food, and trying to immerse in the culture, mostly through watching people go about their daily lives. What Gordon sees, and I see, and how we interpret these things can be vastly different, and that’s a good thing.

#1 thing you must do when traveling: Walk around a lot, people watch and eat!

What destinations are on your bucket list: South America, as we haven’t been there yet. Chile because our friend comes from there, and Colombia, Panama, and Ecuador are all appealing.

What is the best part about having a travel partner: From a work perspective, it is great because we can balance out the blog with two of us working on it. Also, Gordon does all the adrenaline stuff, like diving, etc. On the flip side, I have a habit of picking up people, and these end up being great stories …well Gordon wasn’t very happy when I picked up a man who had just been released from jail, but there is always a story in a story. Apparently, he is/was a world-renowned videographer. Also, we actually really like one another. Ok, we may get divorced a few times a trip, but we make up quickly.

What is your most favorite travel memory: I’m like a child when I travel. I get so excited seeing new things. Maybe staying on a houseboat on the Prinsengracht Canal in Amsterdam, where people thought we were locals, and waved to us. Also, I had a broken leg from skiing and it was nice to wave my crutches at them. I adore Amsterdam.

If you were given a free trip tomorrow, where would you go: I want to say back to Amsterdam, or Ireland, but perhaps to South America, and the Galápagos Island.

Next travel destination: Skiing in Nozawa Onsen in Japan, our home away from home, via Bali.

TWIPPER OF THE WEEK

Twipper of the Week: Tony Giles from Tony the Traveller!

Current city: I live in Devon

Age: 39

Total countries visited: 125

What makes you interesting: I’m totally blind, severely deaf, yet traveling the world alone!

What brands do you love: no brands!

What have you learned about yourself during your travels: I’ve learned humility, self-confidence, respect for others and become more open-minded.

What is the most interesting food you have ever tried and where: Cammel in Alice Springs, Australia!

If your personality was a city or country, which one would it be: If I were a city it would be Manchester, England: funny,
positive, active, lively, optimistic! If a country, possibly South Africa, diverse, progressive, emotional, active, forward thinking in many areas!!

Describe what has been the most magical place on earth so far: Antarctica, the open silent spaces, the penguins, seals, whales, the cold and the wind, touching whale bones, glaciers, icebergs etc.

Describe the last time you tried something new: I tried Luging in New Zealand, basically an open board on wheels with two seats, one behind the other and handlebars. You descend a hilly track at speed – wicked!

It’s 2050, list all the places you are most proud to have visited: Every world country including both Poles, and maybe the Moon!

Next travel destination: Lebanon and Iraq

TWIPPER OF THE WEEK

Twipper of the Week: Tessa Juliette from Where To Next?

Current city: Based out of Brooklyn NY

Age: 28

Total countries visited: 34

What makes you interesting: I regularly travel alone but also with people I have just met because I think those are the best experiences!

What brands do you love: Free People, Urban Outfitters, Malai Swimwear

What have you learned about yourself during your travels: Problem-solving alone is so much harder but also SO much more rewarding.

If your personality was a city or country, which one would it be: My personality is a bit like London. Hard and cold on the outside but full of so much charm once you get to know it.

What is your favorite and worst travel memory:

Favorite memory: Taking an overnight camel ride to the middle of the Sahara on the outskirts of Morocco. I was with a tour group of about 15 people, all from different backgrounds and countries. Americans, Europeans, South Africans, Moroccans – we all got along so well. That night we had no wifi – again we were in the middle of the Sahara and almost no life except for a fire. Our guides played the drums and one of the guests had brought her violin with her. She started playing with them and we all were singing and they passed more drums out for us to use. It was a moment you dream about when you travel. 10+ different cultures, ethnicities, and diverse group of people just having a great night. Laughing, singing, and living in the moment.

Worst memory: It was actually the next morning. We all woke up and heading back to civilization. We stopped at a coffee shop and finally got the signal on our phones back. The TV in the coffee shop had a news station on and we learned what had happened during our amazing night in the desert: The deadly Paris attacks. The mood immediately changed to one of fear and sadness as our phones began exploding with missed calls, voicemails, and text messages.

What do you enjoy doing the most during your travels and why: Meeting locals and asking them about what life is like where they live. What their favorite spot in the city is and why.

Describe yourself in three words: Positive, energetic, and flexible.

What are the top reasons should someone travel with you: I’m easy going and enjoy simply wandering a city or searching for waterfalls.

Next travel destination: Jamaica!

TWIPPER OF THE WEEK

Twipper of the Week: Robert Michael Poole from RMP

Current city: Okinawa

Age: 38

Total countries visited: 127

What makes you interesting: I’m from the UK but lived in Russia, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and Japan, before recently becoming a full digital nomad sharing images via @robertmichaelpoole.

What brands do you love: Ted Baker and Paul Smith

It’s 2050, list all the places you are most proud to have visited: Hopefully all remaining other countries on earth! I plan to tour the Pacific Islands next and then South America.

What have you learned about yourself during your travels: I think the greatest lesson anyone can learn is that you are who you are because of where and when you are born. Your morals, thinking processes, values, ambitions, and desires, are all a product of the society you grew up in. It’s important to understand how different you’d be if you were by chance born somewhere else, and so it’s good to try to step out of your bubble because until you do, you’ll never truly know who you really are.

Describe the last time you tried something new: Fortunately, in my life, every day brings something new, since I had no base and no routine. Yesterday I tried an incredible spa relay course in Okinawa, 14 spa pools each different to each other, offering different ways to relax the body. Tomorrow I’ll head to China to experience a helicopter ride over the Great Wall of China, which should give me an incredible perceptive of this mammoth structure. I do feel the need to try new things every day, though most are much smaller in scale, from new food combinations to new conversations with new people I’ve crossed paths with.

Who is the most interesting person you have met while traveling: Probably the Dalai Lama, though I’m a firm believer in the fact that everyone you meet has some knowledge and experience that you don’t, and it’s up to you to discover this in each person. Some people may be interesting up-front, but everyone has something interesting to share, and the fun is in discovering them.

It’s your first day arriving in a country with a language so foreign it might as well be gibberish, how do you plan to get by? Smile and use hand signals. I don’t think any languages are really so obscure once you have some experience traveling, all world languages are connected to each other in some ways and have imported words from each other.

What are your travel pet peeves: Encountering people who are only capable of viewing another culture from their own perspective, and thus pass judgment on others rather than finding value in understanding the variety of this world.

Next travel destination: China.

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