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  • Travelling by ferry in Indonesia: our photo reportage from an overcrowded Pelni vessel

    Passengers filling up every inch of the Pelni ferryPassengers filling up every inch of the Pelni ferry

    The idea of travelling by ferry in Indonesia can be frightening for first time visitors, given the high amount of accidents happening on Indonesian waters and news coverage. But the state owned company Pelni has revealed to be safe for the last 30 years or so, as we explained in our previous article about the safety of Indonesian ferries.
    Embarking on a long trip by ferry in Indonesia, means to be able to experience real life as locals do, what they eat, how they behave and socialise and much more.
    Still wondering if adventuring or not in this adventure? What a better way to decide than seeing our photographic report from our ferry trip with Pelni? In these shots are pictured the conditions that we experienced travelling from Labuan Bajo (Flores Island) to Java and what you could generally expect to find while travelling with Pelni during high holiday season.
    The first approach to the ferry in Labuan Bajo was a little bit shocking: while we got closer to the boat we started seeing an undefined mass from far away and we thought it might have been a new design of the boat. After getting closer we actually realized that those, were hundreds of people already standing in line, even thought we arrived at the harbour two hours before the departure. People in Indonesia have an early start and while we were still sleeping and dreaming of golden beaches and fresh coconuts, they were already active and lining up for their vital space!

    ...

  • Story of a man along the "Balkan Route"

    And then it happens that after weeks you have been escaping from oppression with your wife and six kids, paying dozens of thousands of euros to smugglers, being shot by the police in Iran, crossing the country on the trunk of a car compressed with other 3 people and struggling to breath, walking three days and three nights without food and water to cross the border between turkey and Bulgaria or risking your life in a raft in the sea, being beaten and robbed by Bulgarian police and their dogs, you eventually reach safety, you enter European Union in Croatia. But for some reasons your heart decide to stop beating in the unknown city of Slavonski Brod, and the doctors can't do anything to keep you alive. You leave your wife and the six kids you were bringing with you in desperation but at least they are closer to the promised land. No, you didn't come here to steal the jobs of locals or increase the criminality rate as some of them might claim, you just wanted to live a peaceful life with your family. Now your body will probably rest for ever in foreign land because taking it back to Iraq is too complicated and expensive. This is the story of one of the many heroes, a man that passed away last night in the refugee camp. (His route was elaborated from the stories we heard these weeks while volunteering along the "Balkan route")

  • My map of religious diversity according to country of birth

    Religious diversity mapReligious diversity map

    For some time I had this idea in mind, and now that I spared a couple of hours I put it into practice. I wanted to create a map about religious diversity, showing how most of the people in the world choose their religion (actually they are assigned their religion at birth) according to their family and country, and not according to faith.

    For me it is quite obvious and it wouldn't need a map, but for many people unfortunately it's not. I found always quite funny the idea that 100 meters before a border there are 90% Catholics, and just 100 meters after 90% Muslims, and quite humorous (thought extremely sad) to think that wars, political parties, and people in general are fighting according to believes that they didn't even choose themselves.
    My map about Religious diversity doesn't want to be anything close to scientific, and there might even be some mistakes in the color, since I didn't review all the countries. It was just to put an idea into a map and take a break from my duties.
    I used as a source the data from the CIA report "The World Factbook" and when the percentage was not written, I searched for the country on Wikipedia. If also there there were no details, then I classified the country as "No data".
    There were also a few countries were the official data were different than the reality (just think of China, North Korea and Russia to name a few), but I still classified them according to my 2 sources. Also it looks like the CIA used mixed data itself, mostly taken from the latest census, but sometimes

    ...
  • Hitchhiking Social Experiment In Malaysia: Malay, Chinese or Indian?

    In Malaysia it's all about ethnic groups. Since the first moment we entered we had to face the reality that 3 main different ethnics groups are living together but somehow separated, mixing in some cases, staying on their own in others.

    Out of curiosity, since the first ride we took coming from Singapore, we started to count the ethnicity of each driver.

    Tomorrow morning we are leaving by ferry to Thailand, so we can declare finished the competition!

    And the winner is... wait, wait! It's more complicated than it looks.

    We got the following rides in about 1 month of travel:

    Malay: 14

    Chinese: 11

    Indians: 8

    Pakistani (all from Peshawar): 3

    Thai: 1

     

    You might think that Malays are the winners, but actually we should relate the number of rides to the percentage or population by ethnic groups!

    Better would be the percentage of car owners by ethnic groups, and then to take into consideration the ethnicity in each region of travel, but it would get too complicated for a funny game, and I don't know where to get those data.

    According to Wikipedia, Malay are about 60%, Chinese 24% and Indians 7%. If we divide the number of rides by the percentage we get:

    Malay: 0,23 rides (for each point of percentage)

    Chinese: 0,46

    Indians: 1,14

    Surprise! The ranking is actually reverse and Indians are the winner with more than double the rides of Chinese and 5 times more than Malays!

    So our conclusion is that if you are hitchhiking in Malaysia, you have more chances to get a ride with a Malay, but actually Indians are the most generous!

  • Portrait of a local woman in a traditional Indoensian village

    Portrait of a local woman in Nage village, FloresPortrait of a local woman in Nage village, Flores

    This is a portrait I took of a local woman in the village of Nage, in Flores, Indonesia. Nage is one of many traditional villages (Bena, Bela, etc.) in the surroundings of Bajawa, built at the feet of Gunung Inerie.

    After camping the previous night next to a hot spring water, we were invited in the morning by the guardian to visit his traditional village a few hundred meters away, where all the villagers were working together to build the roof of an house. We were warmly welcomed by everybody and happy to assist to this special event.

    It's customary tradition that everybody in the village is participating to such an event for free, working under the sun in happiness, smiling and laughing, males and females alike. This way a roof several meters high, built with local natural materials, can be finished in just one day.

    The reward for the effort was a big communal meal where a pig and an horse were sacrificed to be offered to the villagers of Nage.

  • A real Dayak Funeral Ceremony in Borneo

    Right after our arrival in Borong Tongkok, our host Yana, started to look for real Dayak experiences, and soon we were told of a sacrificial Buffalo killing and commemorative Dayak Funeral celebration not far away. Coherent with our beliefs and ethics, we declined the beheading of the Buffalo, but we were enthusiastic to accept the invitation for the traditional celebration!

    We formed a quite big group mixed of foreigners (us) and Indonesians, mostly Muslims, and we were all equally welcomed in the house where the ritual was taking place. While Dayak people originally live in longhouses, many have moved to more comfortable and private life.

    Apparently it was the first experience of this kind also for some other members of our group, participating as observer to ritual of this type, wasn't that common and we were extremely lucky.

    The house was quite big with a huge living room, most probably used by several families at the same time, hosting several dozens of relatives. They apparently weren't too much impressed by the arrival of our big group, and invited us as if we were part of the family.

    Men sitting at a commemorative funeral Dayak ceremonyMen sitting at a commemorative funeral Dayak ceremony

    The atmosphere was not the one I would have expected, with sadness, tears and sorrow to dominate. In some moments it looked like people were just repeating a ritual almost detached or sometimes even joking and laughing. Later we found out that not only it was "just" a commemorative

    ...
  • Discovering Dayak daily life in Eheng Longhouse

    If you are cruising the Mahakam River, most probably one of your primary goals is to experience Dayak Culture. And what is most valuable than visiting the traditional dwelling of this former tribal etnhic group indigenous to Borneo, in particular if still inhabited? After attending a Dayak funeral ceremony the previous night, we had the chance to visit the longhouses of two different Villages, Eheng and Benung, both in the surroundings of Melak. We started with the longhouse in Eheng, home to Tanjung and Benuaq Dayaks, that is also the only we have visited inside.

    The Dayak Longhouse in Eheng in all of its lenghtThe Dayak Longhouse in Eheng in all of its lenght

    Eheng Longhouse is a really simple building, with no attractive architectural features. Nothing to do artistically with the famous longhouse in Macong, of which we'll write a separate article later. But in the longhouse in Eheng it's possible to experience Dayak life, since there are still people inhabiting it, and that's not something so easy to find anymore.

    The first thing to catch our attention were the traditional Hampatong wooden sculptures in the garden, erected in honour of the dead members of the community, and representing a peculiar characteristic of each one.

    The longhouse is built on stilts, and animals were traditionally kept in the space below the the house. From wooden ladders,

    ...
  • Interview with Allen Myers, traveler, artist, photographer and documentarist

    We are at the fifth appointment with our travellers interview series, and today we talk with Allen, an inspired artist, taking life as it is coming and living his unconventional existence as a gift. 

    Allen's street photo exhibition in Caceres, SpainAllen's street photo exhibition in Caceres, Spain

    My name is Allen Myers, Im from a small town called Paradise, in the foot hills of the Sierra Nevadas. On February 2, 2006, I was walking to take a biology test at Humboldt State University, when I realized that the path that was laid before me, in that my identity was going to be built and structured by a system that I never really signed up for, it was given and it was up to me to either perpetuate that construct or look for something else. I decided to give everything I owned away and buy a one way plane ticket to the farthest place I could find. I would let the world take its course in my life rather than fighting for an identity that wasn?t for me.

    So, how have you started your new life?

    I landed in Turin Italy, as the winter Olympics were halfway through and I could get cheap flights to Turin. I had no idea where I was staying or what was next. I ended up meeting a student from France there on holiday, I shared my intentions and my reasons. He invited me back to his families farm in Grenoble, France. From there I have stayed in hundreds of homes, in hundreds of different towns and cities all over the world. I was searching for the baseline of human existence, the foundation.

    What's the best memory you keep from your travels?

    There are so many incredible memories that I have from this, each time that something new happens or when the

    ...
  • Interview with Nathan, traveling with his family on a vintage 1976 Airstream travel trailer

    We are at the third interview of our World Travellers interviews. Today we get inspired with Nathan that has been traveling non stop for five full years, mostly with his Recreational vehicle (RV). But the most amazing part of it, is that they are a family of five and two of the kids were born on the road!

     THe vintage 1976 Airstream travel trailer in BanffTHe vintage 1976 Airstream travel trailer in Banff

    Hi there, my name is Nathan and I'm an American traveler going on my sixth year of full-timing it. I've spent some limited time in Europe, as well as various spots in Central America, before going the full-time RVer route through my native country. I travel with my three young boys (Tristan 12, Winter 3, Wylder 1) and beautiful girlfriend Renee (32). We were friends in college and afterwards she disappeared on a backpacking tour through Europe. When she got back, recounting her tales, I found myself suddenly needing to travel. I took my first cross-country roadtrip a couple of months after that, and I've been hooked on keeping myself moving ever since. After that trip, I immediately set out to quit my job, go freelance, and see as much as I could of this world while I still could. I'm only 34 so hopefully that means I've got a few more decades of it ahead of me.

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    Traveling with a kid: interview with Talon of 1dad1kid

    Today with have the pleasure to interview Talon that has been traveling with his kid Tigger for the last three years. An inspiring article for people that believe having a child means to stop exploring the world. Find out how they travel, where they go and how they fund their trips.

     

    Talon and Tigger enoying the deep seaTalon and Tigger enoying the deep sea

     

     

    We are a father/son duo slowly traveling the world since 2011. We are both from the US. My son will turn 13 in August, and I am in my mid 40s.

    When you started travelling and why?

    I’ve been traveling since I was little, although I didn’t do serious international travel until my late 20s. After going to the Philippines on a medical mission, I decided I wanted to raise my son in different countries and cultures and to raise him as a global citizen. In 2011, we left the States and have been traveling continuously since then. So far we have been on 6 continents and in 24 countries, some of them multiple times.

    What's your travel style?

    We really mix things up. We’ve done backpacking but tend to be more flashpackers now. We occasionally couchsurf. Whenever possible we travel by train. We much prefer that method of travel. Early on we did a lot of buses, and now I try to avoid them whenever possible. They just aren’t as comfortable for me.

    We also do a fair amount of housesitting which enables us to save money as well as live more like a local. Often that includes animal care, and we really like that as we miss having a pet.

    ...

  • Full time travelers interview: Diana, Mike and their RV

    With today interview we have the pleasure to get to know Diana that has been traveling non stop for the last year with her boyfriend Mike in their RV!

    Enjoying a camp-fire in Arizona in front of the RVEnjoying a camp-fire in Arizona in front of the RV

    My name is Diana. My boyfriend (Mike), two dogs (Strider and Gemma), cat (Phoenix) and I live and travel full time in our RV. We are both Canadian, I am 24 and Mike is 28. Before buying our RV we had done a couple big cross country road trips in my minivan. Being on the road and seeing the landscapes change with my own eyes awoken something inside me. Whenever we would go back home and live our ‘normal’ lives again I just didn’t feel happy. Something inside me craved the adventures and experiences of travel. We have now decided to make travel a permanent part of our lives and have been enjoying every minute so far!

    When did you started traveling and why?

    We have been living in our RV for almost a year now. The time has passed so quickly. We decided on this lifestyle because the conventional way of living never suited us. At one point we were renting an apartment and working full time jobs and just never seemed to make enough money to do more than survive. All of the passion, adventure and fun of life was completely gone and every day seemed exactly the same as the last. I feared if we didn’t make a big change, we would get stuck living like that. We had to find a way out. That’s when we started researching and discovered full time RVing. It seemed like exactly what we were looking for.

    What's your travel style?

    We live and travel in our 1988 Fleetwood Bounder motorhome. Before leaving we did all sorts of renovations to make it more livable such as taking out the dinette

    ...
  • World traveler interview: Radu Paltineanu

    With this article we start our new series of world travelers interviews! We will post a new interview every week, learning from the experts and getting inspired.  This time it's the Romanian-Canadian Radu to inspire us!

    Radu on his way to Stockholm, Sweden, 2013Radu on his way to Stockholm, Sweden, 2013

    My name is Radu and I am originally from Romania, a country of contrasts, somehow stuck between the East and the West. However, when I was 15 I and my parents decided to relocate to Montreal in the province of Quebec, Canada and I’ve been mostly living here ever since, even though I did and still do move around a lot.
    I will soon turn 25 but I’ve been traveling a lot since early childhood. My parents and grandparents were probably the first ones to inspire me to travel, and moving to Canada in 2004 gave me a whole new perspective about traveling and the world. It only made me more curious to discover and understand other cultures. Since then I have travelled to about 30 countries on 3 different continents and once you get the travel bug, it’s nearly impossible to get rid of it. Also besides traveling I started last year to do cycle-tourism and rode my bike from Denmark to Romania and I have big plans for the future in regard to that activity. Last but not least I practice rock climbing and mountaineering on a regular basis during summer time and plan on summiting some important peaks in the years to come.

    When you started travelling and why?

    When I turned 18, my godmother offered me as a present a ticket to Australia. She traveled to more than 60 countries and at the time she thought she might transmit her travel bug to her godson as well. What a wise choice from her part when I look back on it.
    That summer I got to explore most

    ...
  • Homestay in the Himalaya: an unforgettable birthday in Nepal

    Family photo of my birthday celebration in NepalFamily photo of my birthday celebration in Nepal

    Corn fields in Dithal, with the Himalaya visible on the backgroundCorn fields in Dithal, with the Himalaya visible on the backgroundIf I think of the most surprising birthday I've ever had in my life, it was no doubt my 29th birthday celebrated while I was in the Himalaya in Nepal, in a homestay with a local family.

    After trekking for three weeks the Annapurna Circuit and further away, I went back to my basecamp in Pokhara. After such an amazing experience in the nature, one of the most memorable of my life, I couldn't get used to "city life" anymore. That's how I remembered of a man that approached me a few days earlier on the lakeside of Pokhara. He asked me if I could have been interested in a homestay in a village (Dithal) in the Annapurna Area of the Nepali Himalaya, where his mum and sister were living. At the first moment I thought it was just o...

  • Who is behind this travel blog? An insight into the life of two gypsy travellers

    Davide and Oti, off dutyDavide and Oti, off duty

    We recognized that while we write many articles in our travel blog about places that we visit, we say how amazing they are, we upload photos, and we tell you how to go there, we never say anything about us, and more than that we rarely put photos of the gypsy travellers in action! So we thought about making up for this mistake and to offer you an insight into our lives while we travel, and while we are "in vacation", that is while we are off duty at home.
    When we visit our families we like to relax and have fun when we can, as you can see from the cover photo, but the reality is that often we are at the PC, updating the website, dreaming about our next destinations and more than all, organizing our insane amount of photos and videos! Yes, you wouldn't believe it, but we have also plenty of video material, that unfortunately struggle to "see the light" and got blocked somewhere in between dimensions. Our You-Tube channel is kind of craving for new videos, and it can't wait for Oti to fill it up with new amazing adventures! And if you still don't believe me, there is a proof!

    ...
  • Homeless in the main square of Naples

    Homeless "closet" in Piazza del Plebiscito, NaplesHomeless "closet" in Piazza del Plebiscito, Naples

    Even homeless people care for their belongings. This is what we found in the main square of Naples, Piazza del Plebiscito: these luggages waiting for the night to come and their owner to come back. A very central place to live.

  • An artic story from a Norwegian island: how I met Bonnie and Clyde

    Before I got to find out their names,
    I already knew how I was going to remember them.

     

    Beautiful landscape from Hol i Tjeldsund, in the North of NorwayBeautiful landscape from Hol i Tjeldsund, in the North of Norway

     

     

    We were hitchhiking in North of Norway from Narvik to Bardufos in a sunny winter day. It felt good like in the summer days, just that now the sunflower fields were replaced by tones of goldish snow putting down to the ground entire forests ahead of us, in a completely still atmosphere. We wereventuringinside that postcard, and just now I happen to be writing the story on it's back: the story about Roar and Halldis.

     

     The first ride with Bonnie and Clyde

    My visit to Dharavi Slum in Mumbai

    An insight inside Dharavi Slum, one of the biggest indian slum with a population estimated between 600.000 and 1.000.000 people, situated in the economical heart of the sub-continent, Mumbai. Once know as Bombay, today this megalopolis count over 12 millions inhabitants most of whom still have to fight for their daily survival in poor hygienic conditions, in big contrast with the rich and healthy part of the society. Being available only 1 toilet every 1.500 people, the local river is used for going to the "bathroom".

    World famous thanks to the popular movie "Slumdog Millioner" that was set and shoot here, today is place of an alternative tourisme and guided tour. Let's discover it with Davide, roaming alone around this "dangerous" place.

    My visit to Darhavi Slum through photos

    The entrance to Dharavi slum, is through a bridge overpassing the railway tracks.

    The entrance to Dharavi slum, through a bridge overpassing the railway

    In a place where space and light is of limited access, the rails are used as a comfortable living room.

    In a place where space and light is of limited access, the rails are used as a comfortable living room. 002 Mumbai-Bombay-Dharavi-Slum India 3947

    Life on the busy streets of Darhavi

    ...
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 Where are we now: England

 Going to:  Wales, Scotland

View of Land's End arch and cliffs in Cornwall

  Today we were lucky to manage to hitchhike to Land's End, one of the extremities of U ...

Transfagarasan road in Romania seen at night

I took this photo on my second night spent camping next to Balea Lake, after hitchhiking on t ...

Fireworks in front of Castel San'Angelo in Rome

Since some years on June 29th in Rome, there is a historical representation called "La girand ...

Portrait of a local woman in a traditional Indoensian village

This is a portrait I took of a local woman in the village of Nage, in Flores, Indonesia. Nage ...

Sunrise in Jatiluwih rice fields in Bali

While we have seen many rice fields in Java and in the rest of Indonesia, the rice terraces o ...

Sunset between the clouds in Gunung Lawu, Indonesia

This year we decided to spend an alternative Easter. Far away from our families in the bigges ...

A magic place in Kefalonia island: Melissani cave

We still have so many amazing places to write about, but time is not always our friend. Last ...

Sunset in Kasongan, Indonesia: red explosion

After the previous photo of the day, picturing the sunset in Paragritis beach, this is the sh ...

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About Us

Davide Vadal? and Otilia Lefter

We are Davide and Otilia, an international couple with itchy feet, living a non conventional life traveling around the world and learning everyday something new....
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