How Travel Changed My Life: A Traveloka Blog Entry

During my college days, I thought traveling was only for the rich. The best that I could do then was to join sort of promos like winning a trip for four to Disneyland. By the time I got hired as a weather specialist, my hopes were still not up as I could only earn so much (or at least I thought so). However, I found out it was not just a job: it opened up several opportunities for me to travel locally and abroad.

One of my first “travel pic”, in front of the old Malagonlong Bridge, Tayabas, Quezon, just a few minutes walk from home. This was taken in 2011 when I just graduated from college, so not only was I lacking travel funds then,  I also had nothing to eat. LOL

It was on the 21st of September 2015 when I had my first international flight bound for Thailand. In fact, it was my first time riding a plane, too! Besides being an official delegate to a workshop, the only thing I had in mind was what would I be up to once I reach my destination. Despite the nerves and anxiety, I eventually felt a sense of freedom the moment I stepped off the plane.

At the world-class Siam Niramit Show, Bangkok, Thailand, right after the workshop.  Taking pictures inside is not allowed, but I can tell you the show was spectacular and the stage is so high, it is currently holding a world record!

I will always remember in Bangkok the feeling of being a “new soul” when everything I see, smell, hear, taste and touch was new. I was in a genuine state of exhilaration that I felt I could do anything. First time is always the best time indeed!

And that was how my liking for adventure grew into a passion.

10,000 Roses Cafe in Cordova, Cebu. The roses are artificial; which is good, because the real ones won’t make it past the heat.

Since then, I started saving up for my future trips, which I once thought was impossible. I also made sure to look up and read articles on the internet for instructions and tips before anything else, considering myself as a budget traveler. Finally, I would determine if the plan will push through depending on the weather forecast (big thanks to my profession!). Traveling has helped me become more disciplined, resourceful and work-motivated.

Binurong Point in Baras, Catanduanes. Some say it reminds them of Batanes or even Ireland!

A year and a half has past and my official trips as well as my personal ones brought me from one of the highest ziplines in Asia to one of the New7Wonders of Nature. My journeys so far also made me meet new friends, learn local and foreign languages, and even feast on exotic dishes that did not seem so bad after all. Traveling only makes me want to travel more and inspire others to travel as well.

Wearing a traditional hanbok in South Korea. The same thing was worn by tourists in that Palace without being washed. (yay!)

Looking back from how I started as a poor lad and based from what I have experienced thus far, the thing I probably learned most is that you can travel while pursuing your dreams. At least for me it worked. But I do believe that in order for it to materialize, you need to be passionate in doing both. And no, not rich: I stand corrected. 🙂

With dozens of “grandpa stones”. Dol hareubang is the symbol of Jeju Island, South Korea

After seeing what the world can offer, traveling already changed my life and my perspective in life in many different ways. For me, traveling is like searching for the puzzle pieces of your being. The more you wander, the more pieces you will find and the more you will be able to know yourself and your purpose.

Wat Phra Sri Sanphet in Ayutthaya, Thailand. One of the many temples in the historic city.

One time while I was working on my laptop, I looked up at my travel pictures and I realized I still have a lot of pieces to search for. But that’s okay. I will just keep working, save up while young and continue traveling until I complete my own puzzle. 😉

#TravelokaPH      #WhyITravel      #TravelokaStories

So how has travel changed YOUR life? Comment and share it to the world!


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