The Worst Advice I’ve Ever Received About Travel

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By Emily Yerman

“It is too expensive!”

Yes, I hear that all the time. If I were to have a dollar every time a person tells it to my face, I would have been rich by now.

I have been travelling for quite some time now, both internationally and locally. Going as far as Europe, North America and Asia, I have proven that the single worst travel advice I have received is to save up rather than travel, because travelling is supposedly expensive. “Save up for rainy days, invest in real estate and stocks, you can travel when you are rich.”

This is so wrong in many levels. For life is not black and white. There is no completely choosing one option and foregoing the other. Trust me, you can travel and save at the same time. It is just a matter of balance. [Read more…]

Amazing Hikes You Must Do Before You Die: The Great Himalayan Trail (The Holy Grail)

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The Himalayas are one of the most impressive, magical, and daunting places our planet has to offer. One of the most impressive ways to enjoy the vistas offered by these massive monoliths is the Great Himalaya Trail [GHT]. It offers opportunities for trekkers and hikers who wish to challenge themselves. The high route requires some degree of mountaineering, while the low route allows the opportunity to travel from village to village, enjoying Nepalese culture.

Either way, the adventurer has a unique opportunity to explore the world and themselves on the GHT – whether they spend a few days there or a few months.

There are 9 trails in particular which are a joy to complete. [Read more…]

12 Things We Love About Trekking in Myanmar – Part Two: Hsipaw

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continued from Part 1: Kalaw to Inle Lake Trek

Hsipaw is one of the most popular trekking routes in beautiful Myanmar. When you see it, you begin to understand why so many have called it one of the best treks available in the world today.

What makes Hsipaw so interesting is the fact that the region is completely self-sustaining. It’s one of the few accessible locations for trekkers to see authentic rural Burmese  village life. You won’t find ancient ruins or temples or other relics of antiquity here. The roads are mostly unpaved. Ox carts outnumber vehicles. The local market features truly local products.

[Read more…]

Amazing Hikes You Must Do Before You Die: Mount Kailash Pilgrimage Trek in Tibet

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Located to the west of Tibet, Mount Kailash is known as one of the world’s holiest mountains. Tourists visiting Tibet for two weeks or more often make time to take the trek to Mount Kailash.

Background on Mount Kailash 

Trips to Mount Kailash are often referred to as pilgrimage treks because Buddhists and Hindus travel there as often as Tibetans do. Chinese and Western travelers also often visit. In general, the altitude when engaging in this trek is close to 5,000m, making it challenging even for those experienced at treks. Embarking on this trek affords participants an opportunity to see snow -capped peaks, beautiful, clear lakes, and spacious green valleys.  [Read more…]

6 Lessons We Learnt from the Annapurna Base Camp Trek

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One of the most popular treks in the Himalayas is the Annapurna Base Camp (ABC) trek. Very few journeys offer such a wide variety of challenges and landscapes. You’ll find high altitudes, rhododendron forests, and rice paddies along the way. It is unique, spectacular, and something that changes your perspective about life itself.

Our group put together some of the personal lessons learnt while trekking ABC. Although we all had our own reasons for embarking on this adventure, ABC brought us together.  [Read more…]

Trek For Hope: The Little Trees of Light in Chiang Mai

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Christmas is a time of joy today, but it did not start that way. The story of Christmas is birthed out of a tale of desperation. A journey which began over 2,000 years ago is one we are still struggling to apply in our own unique way to this day. Even those who attempt to change the world for the better face the issue of criticism.

It is simply impossible to please everyone in this world all of the time. Even when you give your utmost to the cause, there will be a voice from the crowd who demands you to give even more. This can cause one to doubt themselves, doubt their actions, and even doubt their personal faith.

The holiday season has meaning for all. It is one of the few moments in time when humanity truly becomes one even though we each celebrate the holidays in our own unique way.

This was my goal for Trek For Hope this year: to extend this holiday oneness beyond just a few weeks out of the year. [Read more…]

To My Significant Other: I Am An Adventurer

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Being an adventurer can sometimes be a lonely existence. Sure – you throw on your gear, hit the trail, and meet others who are on a quest to find something new just like you. Yet, at the end of the day, even in the midst of good friends, you wind up feeling all alone.

Finding a significant other while following the dreams of being an adventurer is difficult. Difficult, however, does not mean it is impossible. You have some wonderful traits that are incredibly attractive to others. Instead of feeling despair, consider these reasons why someone may just fall in love with your adventurous spirit one day. [Read more…]

Pictorial Journey: North Sikkim by Sonika Uppal

1By Sonika Uppal 

The words of Aim’e Cesaire come to my mind as the Maruti Gypsy powers over the loose gravel on the NH10 enroute to Sikkim.

Hurray for those who never invented anything
Hurray for those who never explored anything
Hurray for those who never conquered anything
But who, in awe , give themselves up to the essence of things
Ignorant of the shell , but seized by the rhythm of things
Not intent on conquest ,but playing the play of the world

I close my eyes and settle back into the upholstery, dreaming away the centuries on the southern slopes of the Himalayas and fight back the waves of nausea that well up within me. I am headed to Lachung in the north eastern state of Sikkim with my two little girls in tow. Until the 1950’s, the kingdoms of Sikkim , Bhutan, and Nepal were unknown to the West. Visitors were not welcome and the locals stayed untouched by foreign ideas. [Read more…]

8 Things I learnt about Sri Lanka from an In-flight magazine

artisan confectionsIt must have been a moment of impulse but when I first checked the calendar, my eyes were fixated on the series of blank entries over the Deepavali holiday. The words “Public Holiday” appeared in a way similar to how the words jumped out to Robert Langdon when searching for puzzles in the Da Vinci code. I finally decided to do what I had been putting off for the past 2 years – visiting Sri Lanka. The desire to climb the sacred mountain, Adam’s Peak (Sri Pada) had been one of the earliest inspirations in my pursuit of hiking.

Jump forward 2 months later, seated on the pristine leather of Sri Lankan airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka, I was thankful for this moment. It was a full flight and it was an interesting mix of Sri Lankan, European and Asian passengers. It is always a special moment to visit a country for the first time. Though it was a tempting notion to check out the in-flight entertainment system and see what they were offering to help me get over the 4-hour flight, I resisted. I was instead drawn to the picture of Sigiriya Rock (one of the attractions I planned to visit) which was displayed on the cover for Serendib, the official magazine of the Sri Lankan airline. [Read more…]

Dear Boss, I am an Adventurer

Dear Boss

Being a traveler and taking time off of work can sometimes reflect poorly on your future employment applications. Yet, it can also be one of the most important attributes an employer is seeking to find. People with an inner need to constantly explore are often some of the best employees. They have international experiences, a thirst to improve that is never really satisfied, and the outcome is a happy boss because your sense of adventure has made the company become better today than it was yesterday.

Here are 5 more reasons why being an adventurer in practice and at heart can make you more competitive for any job application.  [Read more…]