Uncharted Traveller

Category - Travel Somewhere, Anywhere

Generation Emmigration: Why so many young are leaving home


With more people emigrating from different countries around the world by the day, it’s only now, having travelled and lived abroad for the past six years, that I fully understand why young people are packing their bags and leaving Ireland, England, Australia and just about everywhere else.

Many years ago when the idea first came to mind, it was met with a very stark warning.

“There‘s lots of snakes there, you know that don‘t you? You hate snakes“

My Dad was born in the 1940‘s, he worked very hard to take a family from the working class to the comfort of the middle. In truth, like many in the same era, he had sacrificed the best part of his life to provide a better life and opportunity for his wife and kids.

In my case, the true fruition of such opportunity came at the turn of the century when several movies including “The Beach“ with Leonardo Di Caprio began to inspire a deep sense of wanderlust. I was certainly afraid but at the same time, the idea of travelling to exotic places and experiencing different cultures was impossible to ignore.

The previous warnings of snakes was in response to my mention about moving to Australia on a working holiday visa and it didn‘t take hindsight to realise this was my Dad‘s feeble attempt to dissuade his son from moving away from him. When I finally decided to move he said “you can always come home you know…“ .

In fairness, no parent likes to see their “baby” move away but it‘s worth keeping in mind that more recent generations have a completely different attitude toward travel and living abroad to that of our parents or ancestors. In fact, it maybe an exaggeration but it‘s also likely that my parents and their parents solely related the idea of moving or travelling abroad to desperate circumstances like famine, unemployment etc whereas my own personal view screams the complete opposite emotions of excitement, change and joy.

Today the online world is a prime example of how the theory of travel has moved from being a scary thought to an exciting adventure. The internet is awash with photographs, video and encouragement aplenty for the potential traveller. It‘s a haven of support, a library of exciting ideas and a glimmer of hope for those who seek change in life.

Although unemployment has not disappeared and some folk still move for un-savoury reasons, in general those who emigrate nowadays or go travelling, do so to escape the confines of a more conventional life, to seek new places, meet new people or enjoy more freedom and all of these new experiences individually result in many moments of enlightenment for the traveller.

Travelling or living abroad is addictive, it changes people and brings about a completely different way of thinking. Whether they decide to return home or not, nobody who moves to Canada or Australia, backpacks through South East Asia or buses around South America ever regrets their brave decision to go travel.

Truth is, the world has changed so much in this lifetime and it pains me to say it but Dad couldn‘t really have understood my reasons to leaveIreland, in fact I doubt those who have not travelled themselves can fully understand it either.

For me the nice part to remember in all of this is a bit of a paradox; Many will say the impact of technology and internet is to thank for our growing sense of adventure or inspiration but really, this great feat should be attributed to our parents and ancestors who provided us with this opportunity that most of them never had, to explore this beautiful world.

People may not always understand your reasons for going and sometimes you might not even understand it yourself but it’s only important to remember how privileged we are to live in a world where new places and new people are never “far away”.

There need be no wonder for the reasons why young people emigrate or travel in today’s age – it is a great experience, it helps people grow and most importantly it provides a freedom of choice that is unparalleled in the recent history of civilisation.

So enjoy the journey for what it is and remember, no matter where you are or what is happening;

You can always come home.

The Importance of Going Somewhere


Standing at the bus stop this morning listening to music again, it felt as though I had spent half the week waiting already – if it wasn’t the bus, it was at the ATM machine and if it wasn’t waiting in line at Tim Hortons for another coffee, it was waiting for someone to call or text in the evening.

Nobody called….and nobody texted.

I spent several years travelling around the world from South America to South East Asia, Australia, Europe and then a lot of travel to Africa. Honestly, when I left home I really thought that travelling around the world would allow me to “find myself” or to find answers to all the confusion that seemed to hover over my then current situation. It wasn’t just the job, it was everything – my lacklustre social life left me confused as to whether anything was getting better, my lack of ambition was obvious and my constant yearn to know what the purpose of life was all about was unrelenting.

I left home for the reasons above but while there were many answers on the travels, the experience of doing so seemed to bring forward even more questions than ever before.

However I know now that it was in this period that my life was most fulfilling, meeting new and exciting characters from different countries, waking up in a new destination each morning – eating pot noodles and feeling excited for what lay ahead that day or week. The new experiences changed me and everything I had come to know but it was the experience of being on the move that was most important – it made me feel like I was progressing in life, going somewhere and it made it feel as though I were closer to finding meaning even if that wasn’t true at all.

So now I’m at the bus stop again, with the same music and the same people standing alongside as the day before and the day before that. Nobody is calling and nobody is texting so I leave the bus stop and begin walking as a symbol for everything I wanted to change.

It was only in this moment I remembered what even I so easily forget from time to time –  one of the most important lessons I learnt while travelling the world: The only way forward is to keep going and it is only with new experiences that we find the change we yearn for so much. It is not the fact that I am now in the big city that makes me feel like I am waiting, it is the fact that I have stopped moving forward, I have stopped looking for new experiences in my life, new people, a partner.

I walk not because of the bus, I walk because I want to move forward, to stop waiting for the ideal life to present itself and look for it instead.

East Coast Trail: What are you afraid of?

RTW packing list

I get asked this all the time of course but when I returned to signal after a few days of isolation walking the East coast trail in Newfoundland, I received a message from someone asking why I take on these trips and why I take to them alone – in general it is because I have found that adventure has a way of changing a person but I thought It would be apt to answer this question more specifically in context to the last few days.

Sunlight shining through the doorway brought a new atmosphere to the woods that were so dark just hours before. I would never have done this a few years ago (camp alone in the forest), I do still notice the branches snapping around the tent at night, I sense something out there in the darkness, I still feel vulnerable.

Although I am now content on sleeping alone in the woods, it can still feel daunting but ironically it has been my favourite part of this short adventure to notice all these same fears are present because it is then I also realize that these feelings no longer control the outcome anymore.

Instead they prompt me to think deeper about the fear and they prompt me to move forward, to keep going.

I met another camper in the woods called Lucas, we had a chat about the trail, gear and where we came from. We spoke for just ten minutes so I was devastated to feel emotional when we went our separate ways – I didn’t want him to leave. Later that day I felt just as devastated to notice how my spirits soared just to see the remnants of a fire “SOMEBODY ELSE IS OUT HERE”. It was a particularly long stretch of unforgiving terrain but it seemed I was no longer hiking the East Coast Trail, no I was marching for survival. As with the many deserts I cycled last year in Africa, it got to the point where I just wanted out of this forest, I didn’t want to be alone anymore – I wanted to sit down with a cup of tea and watch tv… I don’t even drink tea!

I truly savour these journeys into the outdoors but as darkness falls again and I look out across the bay to lights in the distance, it’s clear that the lessons I learn on them are always more important than what I “achieve” or what I see.

You see, my deepest fear is not of the woods or what’s lurking outside the tent, it’s not the moose, the marsh or the terrain.

My deepest fear is of being alone and solo adventures remind me of this. I do these trips because they have an acute way of refreshing my mind of what’s important and they help me to overcome the fears that have stopped me moving forward in the past.

As I said before, adventure changes you and the question as to why I take these trips is another reminder of how it changed me:

I am now searching for reasons why I do these things instead of wondering for the many reasons as to why I cannot.

Simple Advice: How to become a professional Travel Blogger


Being a Professional Travel Blogger is a dream for many. It seems really exciting to just keep travelling all over the world and putting your experience down in pen and paper. Well, it does come with its own share of struggles and hardships, though. It involves a huge amount of work, investment of time, and even the effort. It can be long before you even start to see any profits or benefits.

Keep on, no matter what

Most people tend to give up on travel blogging too soon. There are a number of people who try to take it up as a full time job, but leave it half-way, the main reason being the time taken for your investment to be fruitful. Quick results should not be expected if you expect to take this up as a full time career. You leave your jobs and start travel blogging, but when you see the losses you get disheartened. One needs to be strong enough to0 pursue this and wait for the results.

The Lives of Professional Travel Bloggers

  • For a professional travel blogger, his blog means the most. You will have to put in a huge lot of effort to make it worth it. You need to love it and enjoy doing it. You need to be a bit of a workaholic.
  • They work much harder than any usual person with a fixed job. If you expect a 9 to 5 job, then this is not your take. You should be ready to work for hours at a stretch without any fixed time limits. It is much more than just writing down. The work involves tremendous amount of research as well.
  • The money is never constant. You do not have a fixed source of income. The money may be too less at times or much more than expected at other times. The lean times can be a total loss, and you need to be well prepared for all this.
  • It takes time to actually start making money. In the beginning, for a year or so, you need to establish yourself and make your mark. Only after that you can expect advertisers and travel companies to start putting money in to your blog. This is where you need to keep going without giving up.
  • Blogging and writing are different. You just do not write on a blog. You need to be much more creative, engaging, and enticing. You need to write smart.

Well, travel blogging is indeed exciting if you have the passion for it. If you have it in you, go for it!

Can YOU live Without Travel?

easter island

I stopped commenting on Facebook or putting up status updates after an experiment quite a long time ago, the reason for doing so was pretty simple – why do I constantly want to tell people, whether I know them or not, how I am feeling or what I think about something they give absolutely no shits about? It was a short and pretty ridiculous experiment whereby each time I felt the urge to update Facebook, I asked myself “What will other people get out of this?”…the unsurprising answer 90% of the time was exactly nothing.

Technology is a great thing, social media, television and smart phones – they’re all great, I love them all almost as much as I like hanging off the side of a mountain on s Saturday morning but honestly, it has completely changed the way I think about other people. This is almost solely down to what comes up in my news feed each day, I feel like an old miserable pessimist for saying this but it just seems to be one long stream of people talking about how great they are, how great their lives are….and basically pointing out how shite mine is at the same time!

It dawns on me that even when people are not trying to make other people feel this way, it just happens anyway – a photo of a white sandy beach in the Bahamas can feel like a kick in the balls on a Monday morning in the office, a video of a skydive in Australia makes me reach for tissues for bringing up happy memories of my once exciting life when I too, was jumping out of perfectly good airplanes in Australia. Sometimes I wonder whether I need to travel again as it always seems so much more exciting and happier than being here.

Thing is, it’s almost never as good as it seems. It reminds me of the time I visited Easter Island, the most remote island in the world with people living on it (apparently). Before I went I had visions of these ancient Moai statues speaking to me and it was easy to also imagine feeling like Tom Hanks in Castaway looking for Wilson on a big tropical island but that’s not really how it went down. Easter Island was fascinating in many ways but I put up pictures back then without any words because the truth is, it cost a fortune to get there and in comparison with trips I have taken all over the world – it was a bit of a crap experience.

I spent every morning being chased down the street by two stray dogs, I have no idea how they knew to be there at the right time every-time..but they did – the bastards. The Moai were cool but like travelling around Bangkok Temples, when you see a few of them, that’s it, it’s time to start looking at something else. It was a lonely time, there were hardly any tourists when I was there and honestly, I just spent most of the time wanting to be anywhere other than where I actually was!

The Moai picture above has apparently made a lot of people I know want to go to Easter Island but in truth, just like the happy status updates on my news feed every morning, just like the pictures of white sandy beaches I see on Mondays, just like my time in Australia and every other time in the past – Travel is an amazing thing but it’s not always as good as it seems.


The Reasons Against NOT Travelling the world

why you should travel

There are quite a lot of reasons not to travel – you do not have enough money, time, you have a fear of the unknown – but if you set those reasons aside you will realize that you’re actually missing out on great new experiences in life.

To see things from a different angle

One of the best things about traveling is the fact you will see some new aspects of life. You can easily get into the daily routine and the whole world is waiting to be discovered. Doing laundry, cooking, cleaning, shopping, as well as going and returning from work through the crowd lead to a certain feeling which is stagnant. Even if you enjoy your job and do not mind washing a bunch of laundry and ironing, the journey can provide a new enjoyment and give you a completely different picture of life.

Why it matters: Whether you are traveling to a neighbouring country or go halfway around the world, travel will have you feel an unforgettable experience that will completely change your bucket list.

To charge up your batteries

Day after day, life can totally get you down. Time passes very quickly, and when you think you finally have time to do something for yourself, you’re so tired you only want to relax on the couch and watch TV. Although there is nothing wrong with resting this way, perhaps it would be better to get away from everything. When you are at home, you always think about things that bother you more than when you are miles away: whether you’ve washed the dishes, if your boss will give you the raise you were asking for, or whether your colleague will give his best when it comes to the project you are working on together. Therefore, replace the daily stress with ‘problems’ of which attractions will you visit today, what will you eat, which beach to go to or what souvenirs will you buy.

Why it matters: The journey can provide relaxation and recharging the batteries which you cannot so easily achieve when you are at home.

To see something new

The world is big, and although there is no way to see absolutely everything, if you feel and experience something that is outside your city or state you will be able to expand your horizons, to experience new things that you never knew existed. You can be crazy in love with the place where you live (which is great), but if you look just a little outside the box who knows what treasure you’ll find there. From the new food, people, customs, to places that you have not even imagined existed, the journey is full of surprises.

Why it matters: Every new place and experience can help you become a better person and enrich your life.

To set the challenge before ourselves

This is probably the most important reason why you should travel. Challenging yourself is never easy, that’s why it’s called a challenge, but going on a trip can be a very good challenge for you. The journey is a challenge for many reasons, ranging from the fact that you do not know the language, eating unfamiliar food, even the fact you might get lost and lose your everyday comfort (and to understand that every challenge can be overcame). Life is too short to skip this great experience just because you can make it appear difficult at first glance.

Why it matters: Challenging oneself and leaving the comfort of their own comfort bubble can help you develop as a person, gain confidence and overcome the emotional and physical limitations that might hold you back in some areas of life.

I personally had a great pleasure traveling along the former cities of the Byzantine Empire. This journey is a ‘soul food’ to all Byzantologysts, the feeling of touring all the places you had an opportunity to read about is priceless. That’s why I would recommend for everyone to visit destinations from their favourite novels or films. That will truly be an experience you will never forget.

Top 5 Travel Movies that Inspire



A truly beautiful story about young Che Guevara and a most memorable trip around South America. You may not own a bike, you may not like bikes, it doesn’t matter – this is adventure at it’s best!



Yeah so it’s a movie about poor kids, hope and a television show but honestly, that moment when the kids jump up on top of the train and start running along the carriages – who in their right mind would NOT want to go somewhere after seeing that!



This really is a sad story – for anyone who lets it be this way. Really, the story of Chris McCandless is much deeper to anyone who has experienced the full force of wanderlust. This movie will make you want to get up and leave, to sell everything you own and head off on a crazy adventure which will make everyone think of you as being nuts. Well maybe you wont do any of this….but it’s still nice to think about from the comfort of your sofa.

movie tracks


We could easily have included Reese Witherspoon and WILD but with the name of the movie above making this list it seemed a bit cheap to do so. Tracks is a genuinely beautiful story about “why not’ as opposed to the question “why” at all. You will want to do something after watching this movie, anything, anything at all…



Undoubtedly the reason so many twenty and thirty somethings are roaming around Thailand or different parts of the world looking for a new experience. That first scene when Leonardo Di Caprio’s narrative talks about how most people look to do something different but always wind up doing the same thing – ingenius. This may seem like an exaggerration but when you consider the impact this movie had on young people at the time and even now, it’s not hard to see why The Beach is still the best travel movie out there!




5 Slightly different Travel Bloggers to follow in 2015

travel blog



What an amazing name for a travel blog, she writes with emotion and is very engaging with the blog followers.



Yes so Ed is another Corporate guy who jacked in his job to go travel the world but his style of writing is at least unique and there’s a slightly different spin on his travel blog in that he has a section dedicated entirely to “Deaf Travel”.



I just don’t think there are all that many well known travel Bloggers from India, maybe I’m wrong bt anyway, the fact that he named his Blog as above will let you know that this guy has a talent for writing in a self-depreciating way which is always appreciated.

dont stop living


Yep, says it all in the name – what I like about this guy is how he has a guide to travelling Iraqi Kurdistan.



Can’t say I’m a fan of the blog title but most definitely a fan of this guys honesty. Travel Bloggers have a knack for complaining about how some people just go places to party rather than see the destination – well this is not entirely true, this guy proves it and he also reminds us of how fun it is to party!

Real travel against the world, is it real?

wadi rum, Jordan

Most professional travel bloggers aren’t really putting all their love in the game, I don’t want to name blogs and other online institutions but as a professional travel blogger myself, I tend to personalize the experience, hence in so doing, I couldn’t detach myself from providing a less subjective touch to the travel content which is kind of good for a real travel blog. It ain’t this way if you think like a reader, someone’s who is just after sharing the love of the travel itself, but if you’re looking for an in-depth perspective of what it feels like to go to that very place the blogger is writing about, you’ll notice all the bias that will certainly cloud your judgment.

It is easy to describe a place specially if the travel blogger likes it but what if they don’t? You will see here that that the place will be ignored until another travel blogger writes about it in a favorable fashion. Seriously, if you want to go somewhere and experience it in a raw fashion, you better not read travel blogs since they just write two kinds of inputs, favourable or less favourable, either way they don’t care about what you feel or your expectations. They just want to get online traffic and be done with it, you’re not even sure if they’ve been there or they just bought the article from someone who is not even a professional blogger. That’s the nuisance or more like a noise that hovers anywhere on the web, a sad reality about travel blogging that disgusts me the most.

In my annoyance, I decided to take a personal campaign which I would like to call real travel against the world. I love traveling as it sets my deepest emotions free. Think about working at the comfort of your home, your mind might be free thanks to your imagination but all your senses are dulled. I call this fake emotions since you’re reacting to an experience out of imagination, sure it might be powerful but it isn’t real. However, once you stand on top of a hill with cool winds breezing on your face, then you’ll experience raw emotions coming from within. This is the most real travel experience that I could think of but sadly, I don’t see it on the web much often. In fact, travel bloggers just imagine going to a certain place base on facts and other travel writer’s ideas, what’s real about it? None.

So for your next travel, help yourself and just read about it on Wikipedia or Wikitravel for a less bias content. Nonetheless, if you want to know more about the place, I’m sure there are independent travel bloggers who may write in a secular manner but in a genuine fashion. I love to read real travel experiences, they use words that are less polluted but put in what they experience instead. Things like ABC has fascinating beaches and whatnots, annoys me. Of course anybody can write that way, but if you say, I feel my feet slowly sinking on the sand, then you get my attention.


Travel doesn’t change anything


They say that Travel changes you but really, it doesn’t change anything;

I moved to a new Krakow hostel a few nights ago and he was the only person staying in my dorm when we exchanged the usual silent stare of “who the f$%k is this axe murderer?”. Although I guess this was a slightly better greeting than the smart phone gang downstairs.

It sounds pretty stupid now but there was a time on my travels when I would assume to have had nothing in common with a person from some place in a strange part of the world. In fact, in previous years I may never have taken the time to find out anything at all about his lonely trip through Europe or his sudden relief to be now speaking with another person.

We laughed until 3am and I’m not sure what we talked about exactly but the next morning he wondered why I referred to myself as “the Songbird of my generation”.

My time in Krakow is coming to an end and while it has been a Month of focusing on earning income online rather than travel itself, it’s now clear how this experience as always, was a reflection of the random strangers I encounter.

Does travel change anything?

I hear quite often that meeting new people is a “great experience” but unfortunately in my own experience and either for reasons of anxiety or social awkwardness, this has not always been the case which means it’s a pretty big deal to be noticing these changes in my own attitude now.

Hisbullah is from Singapore and meeting him in Krakow was a reminder that time is way too short to be afraid of saying hello to the person next to you.

They say that Travel changes you but really, it doesn’t change anything and mostly you just decide to change everything yourself.