Mark Twain summarizes my travel philosophy better than I am able to, he wrote that “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.” My company, Discover Elsewhere, creates experiences that embody this philosophy.
What places and activities do you specialize in?
"I have focussed in the South East Asian region on activities that I believe highlight the geography, culture, history and culinary delights. The way we view the country dictates the way we respond to it.... so rather than specializing in one thing I have created trips that respond to the geographical demands of the countryside. My aim is to help travellers transcend cultural boundaries, to unlock the rhythm of each city, town, river and jungle. Discover Elsewhere changes the way you look at the world – literally."
How did you get involved in travel?
"So my background is actually as a criminal defence barrister in Australia, but I was sidetracked when the first tour of Cirque Du Soleil came to town. When they moved on from Melbourne I found myself quitting my job as a lawyer and within a week I was hanging from a trapeze to an audience of 2000. That job was never going to last long but I took a job as a guide in Vietnam shortly after.... and havent looked back since. My travels have taken me in odd directions.... leading world first trips through Saudi Arabia, being accepted as a tribesperson for the Yemeni headhunters and living in the Sahara for some time with the most isolated and unknown tribe in the world - the mysterious Tuareg. I went from one language to 8 in 8 years and have stayed there since.... although I probably need to recap a few of them. Asia has been home and always will be.... the need to be here grows stronger over time. "
Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.
"One of the most beautiful moments I have had in my travels was on a small one street town in Laos, literally in the middle of nowhere. It was late at night and fireflies were sparking as they darted through the trees next to me on the side of the road. I turned to the other side to see a man holding his new born baby, both of them wrapped together in white cotton. The inside of the basic wooden house was lit only by candelight... I was invisible to both of them as they stared at each other. Im so glad I didnt have a phone or camera.... as that image has remained imprinted on my mind forever."