Most recently people have become more interested in increasing the numbers of countries visited as supposed to returning to the same country or continent. The urge for counting countries has led to creation of age landmark deadlines such as eg 30 countries before age 30, or some lucky ones have 40 countries before age 20.
Having someone visit the same country or countries over and over again leaves one wondering when they will achieve seeing all countries on their bucket list clearly they ain’t as greedy as most of us.
We believe people might travel twice or more to the same place because they know exactly what’s in store once they arrive ; it may be a guaranteed sunny climate, endless fun and adventure or a great hotel in a perfect location.
If you follow @browntraveler like we do, then you would understand the importance of this interview. He has constantly returned to Asia with a special love for South East Asia. We have seen various Asian countries extensively through him, and let’s not talk about his love for street food which in his words ‘is the best way to learn about the people and their culture’.
Negbe is a 9-5’er based in the U.S, he is fortunately a virtual worker which
means we all hate him and wish we had his job means he can work remotely and doesn’t have to be confined to his desk space at work.
He has however not stopped visiting Asia since he first visited in 2008. He has since then spent his vacations there, at least twice a year. Countries visited includes Philippines (countless times), Malaysia (twice), Singapore (twice), Indonesia (twice), Thailand (twice), Vietnam (twice), China (twice), Taiwan, Hong Kong, India and Korea.
How many days in total have you spent travelling in Asia (all years visited)?
I can’t say how many days I’ve spent in Asia. Too many to count. I first visited the region in 2008. Over the past 4 years, all my vacations have been spent here – at least twice a year (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
How many countries in Asia?
I’m gradually building linear and am currently at 11 depending on how you define country.
Six of these countries are in South East Asia. Why did SE Asia win your heart?
SE Asia easily won my heart for two reasons. First, my work is fast paced and requires a lot of brain work, and I work hard. The atmosphere, people and culture in the region give me the getaway I need. People are friendly, welcoming, laidback and interested in you.
Secondly, we grew up with our school teachers telling us all about Europe. They didn’t invest so much in teaching about Asia so I am learning about it on my own and the place is amazing and exciting.
Which of the SEA would you recommend for a newbie?
I think it depends on your personality and fear thresholds. If you’re afraid of the language barrier, you could start in Hong Kong or Singapore (if you’re an English-speaker). They have great transportations and are both small territories. You can’t get lost. Personally, I’m biased and would recommend Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Beautiful city, high-tech, great transportation and truly a melting pot.
Would you return back to the same country over and over again? Is it bad that we discriminate against a place purely for the fact that we’ve been there? It probably is.
To be fair, spending a couple of days in a capital city is not experiencing a country to any reasonable level. But with a limited amount of time to travel and much of the world still on the bucket list, we feel that there has to be a compelling reason for somewhere to justify a return visit.
Clearly our twisted logic doesn’t apply to Negbe, who beat all odds and hasn’t let the need to see elsewhere stop his first love SE Asia.