This is our monthly project on #Adventure #Travelers #Part 2 which are created from interviews and engagements that Travlyng authors have with active travelers. If you are interested to be interviewed for your travels, please reach out to us on Twitter.

Most of our lives we live in a paper town, too afraid to take the first step towards something new. But sometimes it is worth the shot, as John Green weaves in his novel ‘Paper Towns’. “It is so hard to leave—until you leave. And then it is the easiest goddamned thing in the world.” However, to rise above the average It means finding your own kind of happiness by seizing the moment instead of waiting for the opportunity. Els traded a moribund existence in a village in Belgium, where ‘’nothing ever happens and everybody knows one another,” for a life she had envisioned for herself, that only she knew how to actualise.

I quickly knew I wanted to discover what other countries looked like, how other people lived, hear different languages and explore different cultures.

When you feel the walls closing in around you, you must find the nearest gap to slip past before it is too late.

Roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet and nature too!

Els realized that the all-you-can-buffets and forced entertainment of holiday packages was not her forte during her first trip to Dominican Republic. Therefore, she went on a camping trip to Scotland and she instantly fell in love with the outdoors. Like a true traveler never lets minor hiccups define their journey, Els found herself smitten by the majestic landscapes, while roaming around penniless, having recently lost her wallet, with a backpack so heavy that it almost gave her a hunchback!

From “leading groups in the Scottish highlands, to participating in dog-sled races in Norway, to embarking on adventures in forests in Canada and exploring the catacombs in France,” YouTuber and Bushcrafter, Steve Taylor, is the ultimate Adventure Traveler. On his YouTube channel, Stevie Outdoors, he uploads impeccably shot videos of his bushcraft adventures. This primitive way of life explains the moniker, “just a dude in the woods,” who enjoys the perks of it! You wonder what? Well one of them could be free food! The close communion with nature allows him a life of unbridled freedom. However, apart from the mountains and the sea, it is surf that remains his turf.

I feel that when I surf, it's like a dance with the ocean.

Sometimes the ocean gives back what it takes from us. In this case it responded to love with love, by giving Steve Jill, whom he met while teaching surfing. Els, on the other hand, feels emotionally overwhelmed at the sheer beauty of nature from a mountaintop.

I just can't imagine that it all comes down to natural progression and creation,

she says.

Put everything else on the shelf, rely on yourself!

We travel far and wide to come to terms with the realisation that at the end of the day, you have yourself to rely on when the water gets turbulent. And who knows it better than travelers themselves. Trekker and traveler, Alex Carter, adopted a smart approach to acclimatize himself with travelling alone. He started off with hiking trails, a short drive away from his house.

Till date he has visited Samoa, Vanuatu, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, New Caledonia, New Zealand, India, Oman, UAE, Tanzania, Bahrain, Maldives, Seychelles and Australia. Alex recommends Samoa, a country that’s relatively new to tourism, as the next holiday destination. Cheryl Strayed, in her book, ‘Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail,’ writes, “I was amazed that what I needed to survive could be carried on my back. And, most surprising of all, that I could carry it.” She had a life-altering realisation because she took that leap of faith. Hidden beauties can be unearthed, if we forget guides and pre-arranged tours. Who knows what it might lead us to? This became true of Steve Taylor when he left home at the tender age of 15 to live out of a tent at Mendip Hills in England! In tune to his newfound way of living was his first job in an outdoor activities lodge. Likewise, Els’ travels made her realise how easy we have things which we take for granted. She admits that it made her more sociable and independent. A thinker and doer, Steve echoes,

I follow my instinct and listen to my gut feeling when a situation presents itself.

The nature lover and adventure seeker spent a night in Bran Castle, popularly known as, Dracula’s Castle and went on a pendle witch hunt.

An untamed spirit, knows no limit!

Steve has had a big life for a young person and once we heard his story, we were left wide-eyed with gaping mouths. The man did not only churn out a fortune out of nothing, he went from being a television artist to being a radio host, an entrepreneur, a magazine feature-writer, an author, a surf instructor and a wildlife tour guide. Phew, a restless soul indeed!

The untamed spirit inside him saved him in time from getting bogged down by the weight of life’s predicament. In his words,

As far back as I can remember I have wanted to be free.

After Steve came face to face with his deteriorating health, he cut all ties with the empire he had built from scratch and broke free. Once he showed the courage to see eye-to-eye with his expectations from life, it put him on a path that allowed him to think outside the box and live outside the box. Come to think of it, when there are diverse delicacies to try and a plethora of distinct cultures to experience, why choose one path! Paths converge and diverge as we are all in a constant state of flux. Quentin of Paper Towns says, “I leave, and the leaving is so exhilarating I know I can never go back. But then what? Do I just keep leaving places, and leaving them, and leaving them, tramping a perpetual journey?”

Perhaps yes, at times. What if you never have to go back? Living the van life with his partner Jill and Reef the dog, proved to be therapeutic for Steve.

We moved in a 36-year-old van and went to Europe and Morocco.

At the bottom of it all, the mutual love for travelling ties them into one and prioritise each other over everything else. There’ something in the world for everyone. It’s a big, big world. Stay tuned, we are always weaving stories for you.

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Guest Travelers

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Traveling and the kindness of strangers make you realize that the world isn't such a bad place after all, despite what the media would have you believe!

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Adventure for me is living, living my best life and trying everything

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Alex Carter
@trekker.man

To explore in ways that others are too scared to try

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Srija Podder

Journalist turned full-time content strategist and a part-time wannabe fashion blogger, I like to live inside my little bubble. Food is my solution to everything and writing, my escape. I seek inspiration everywhere and love to get lost in stories of wanderlust. Can’t live without books and a self-proclaimed #instaaddict.