The system just isn’t for me… You see, I have this need for freedom and a constant itch under the soles of my feet to see the world…
Time as a Traveller started out as my own personal travel journal. A snapshot of life from a travellers eye mixed together with a healthy dose of humor, a dash of wit… an occasional tug on the heart string, and as it turned out, inspiration for others. I have travelled to 62 countries on last count, and lived in 5 different countries. I've become an expert in Solo Travel, Long Term Travel, Budget Travel, Adventure Travel, and 'off-the-beaten-path' type travel. I've generally travelled alone, on a budget and with my backpack on my back.
I'm an independent traveller. I've done it all myself and created my own path. I’ve travelled extraordinary journeys, to the most remote corners of the globe. Here I share my valuable lessons and road-tested travel knowledge, to help you see the world.
Reading other travel blogs, I'd often find a wealth of "How To's" but not often the travel stories that formed them. The real, feet in the earth type stuff... the soul of the journey. The travel stories were the first thing I would search for and more often than not, I was left wanting.
So here, you'll usually always find the travel stories behind the How To's. You can read what happened when I did it, the laughs, the failures, the success, the "oh shit I should not have done that", the "Ohh wow I really did that" and everything in between. Where I was at when I was on the same journey as you, and the insights I learnt from doing it all myself. You won't find a 'Top 10 things to do with kids in Singapore' type of post here, but you will find edgy and authentic content, like "How to navigate the Darrien Gap without getting shot or eaten", A "Survival Guide to Night Bus Travel in South America", and if you're not sure what the Bocas Effect is, you can read about that here. If you want something heart wrenchingly raw, try this one.
At present, the destinations I focus on are in The Americas, mainly South America and Central America, purely because it's my favourite part of the world. When I run out of content on that, I guess I'll continue writing about the rest of the world (or if I receive a request, so please feel free to ask). My Travel Planning, Travel Preparation, and Packing information is World Wide. I also write a column about life insights I've gained from travelling the world, it's called The Off-Topics.
Are you here because you've not travelled the world yet but are considering it? Well be warned, I am well known for inspiring others to buy a plane ticket... often never to return to same. I clearly remember my younger brother phoning me "Kim I've got a plane ticket to Chile, I'll be gone a long while. By the way, mum is pissed at you, it's your fault, you inspired me". One of the proudest moments of my life. (You can read about what happened after that conversation here).
Want to know about My Story? Read on...
The freedom of travel is intoxicating to me. I had my first taste of world travel at the age of 17 when I went on an exchange year to Brazil. This started a love affair with world travel that would always leave me wanting.
My itchy feet held out until I finished uni, then they finally got the better of me. I left home for '1 year' in London… that was in 2005... 4 years later I was still there. You see, each country I visited seemed to elicit a list of more rather than less. My journey of long-term travel and expat living continued straight until 2013, that's 8 years straight on the road, without a home base. Not only did I love world travel, I loved writing about it and capturing it. Time as a Traveller was born in 2012, when I moved my memories over from my old Travelpod account (although some are still floating around in the abyss, waiting for me to hit publish). Now, I travel from having an actual home base. That happens, even travellers get older, and at some point you yearn for a home to come back to after months on the road. Unexpectedly, I've found that knowing I have a home to come back to has made me feel more free when I am on the road.
Where have I been?
I’ve Travelled to 60+ countries, throughout Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South America, Central America and North America, often alone (although I have done the occasional overland trip), always on a budget and with my backpack strapped to my back.
Where haven't I been? Asia... Russia... Antartica. (Yes, I am an Australian born traveller who has not been to Asia. Shocking I know. Call me a rarity. When you spend more time living outside of Australia than inside it, Asia sits on the "I'll go once I'm living back in Australia" list... but you never do, so you never go... or rather you realise Australia isn't your home it was just your starting block, and so it stays on that lingering vague list. And then you fall in love with the rest of the world... so Asia is still on my "from Australia" list. I'll get there one day, I may be grey.)
Where have I been to more than once? Morocco, Turkey, most of South America, most of Central America, many European countries.... ok so a lot of the places I've been to I return to... some of them I chose to live in. Once you feel the awe, it's hard not to return. I can't help but go back to places I love.
I’ve lived in Brazil, Mexico, London, Belfast, Wales, Canada, and my home country of Australia (with a random stint in Darwin, but that's a story for another day).
I’ve tried to come home and left again... more than once. I’ve tried life every way possible and found that On The Road with my Freedom intact is where I feel most at home, and where my life becomes extraordinary...
Who am I?
I am an Australian. I am from Melbourne. I am a traveller. I am a dual passport holder. Once upon a time I was an Occupational Therapist and contracted in acute hospitals all over the UK… once upon a time.
I’ve looked death in the face under a raft on the Zambizi river. I’ve been thrown out of a plane over the desert in Namibia and been thrown off a camel in the desert in Morocco (with the bruised bum to show for it). I’ve hiked through knee deep snow in Patagonia, marveled at the Rose City of Petra and the ruined temples of Baalbek, and survived the seas between Colombia and Panama. I’ve slept in hammocks, tents, the back of overland trucks, huddled up in chicken buses, and have mastered the art of sleeping through both take-off and landing on an airplane.
I learnt half of my Spanish from a small Mexican cook named Berta while I washed dishes in a kitchen on a Caribbean island and the other half from singing along to Ricky Martin (yes… really).
I know what The Waifs mean when they sing "I'm in London... Still", and I know what it feels like to yearn for home and feared it equally and at the same time.
My passport is my most prized possession and my trophy room, and I will freely admit to sleeping with it tucked away in my underwear if I ever thought it was in danger (the first time I did that I was sleeping in a shady dorm room in Istanbul, also a story for another day).
I think the sand dunes of the Sahara desert at dusk are the most spectacular sight in the whole world, but I have a strange affinity with the Atacama Desert in Chile that I can't quite place...
I believe that freedom is a choice… a niggling thought in the back of your mind that you yearn for and fear equally, but once you succumb to it your life will become extraordinary.
I am skilled at the art of fitting life into less than 20kg.