For travel addicts and photography lovers
Traveling. For some it’s simply a holiday escape for relaxation, while for others is a need to explore and fill with experiences. In either case, traveling is a trend embedded in our DNA, the driving force that led humanity to colonize every part of the planet. The thirst for exploration of new places, wields an irresistible attraction on us. And even though distances measures differently on each one, every trip, either just two steps away from home, or to the edge of the world, reserves for us experiences, images, feelings, life moments… Let’s board together on a Trip in Pictures, hoping that the images and text will convey some of the experiences on the places I’ve been and the feelings I’ve felt there.
The trip. For some of us it’s an addiction, an imperative need to appease the withdrawal symptoms. Like a persistent virus in the body of the incurable traveler. But most of all, the journey is a gift, perhaps the best gift we can offer to ourselves. For many, it’s synonymous to their dream holidays, while for others a chance to explore places, people and perhaps their own self. I personally started traveling at a time when I felt the need to experience the world beyond my beautiful country, beyond the comforts of Europe, satisfying a need to explore my personal borders. Sacrificing my typical holidays on the picturesque Greek islands and beaches, I set out to seek another kind of beauty, sometimes wild, even harsh and at some times simply breathtaking. I chose to escape from my familiar environment, to wander in the uncertainty of the unknown, in conditions below the standards of the “western world” but with the priceless satisfaction of discovery as a prize. I live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world, but I have a huge thirst to walk on every inch… of the most beautiful planet.
Α journey is most of all images, of landscapes, people and cultures. Τhe more distant the journey is, the more surprisingly different are the images we acquire. Images captured in our memories or in our photographic clicks. Most of people capture photos during their trips to keep their memories, but sharing these images can be a pleasing mind trip to other viewers too. Still, photography is much more than that. As a piece of art, it’s a meaning of expression from the creator, a depiction of the artist’s personal perspective, a story told by freezing a moment in unstoppable time. While traveling, it’s amazing how you begin to see things through the lens in such a different point of view! Observing details, subtle nuances that you might otherwise not have been able to distinguish. Through all these photos of places, people, moments I’ve seen, I hope you’d join me on a trip in pictures.
Published as Photo of the Day
on National Geographic
Published in National Geographic
Wandering on the planet
• Methods • Costs • Risks • Difficulties…
Traveling, even to the most distant destinations, is easier than you can imagine. Besides that, just arranging it on your own is part of the joy. Reading, searching for tickets, staring at maps and photos, discussions with other travelers and daydreaming your future experiences, is a most enjoyable process. And while there are many who prefer the thoughtless comfort of a travel agency that will arrange everything, others find pleasure in the independence of a journey without a strictly predetermined schedule, with travel buddies personally chosen and most importantly without the touristy approach.
Many people think that long trips are a privilege of the wealthy few. The reality is that traveling is simply a life choice. If you choose to sacrifice some luxuries, if you are willing to stay in simple rooms, eat where locals do, use public transport and always search for cheap flights without a specific destination, then you can do it too. If you can live the rest of the year with fewer nights out, limit your dining at fancy restaurants, if you are willing to spend less on clothes and unnecessary products and focus on conquering your dream, then do not hesitate. If your map does not end on the outskirts of Europe and if an unknown African country does make you curious, dare it.
Fear of the unknown is something that we all experience. Being in a foreign environment, among people looking curiously at you, as you do to them, visiting developing countries where poverty sometimes motivates crime, overcoming language and cultural barriers, is not easy. Though, being respectful, modest and using common sense, what I’ve personally met in the countries I have been to, were warm-hearted, hospitable people. People who haven’t lost their authenticity despite the sweat of toil. People that are not absorbed by the alienating rhythms of western lifestyle. People who have nothing in terms of wealth but they are rich in smiles.
The adversities, unexpected situations, the unforeseen factors of a journey… is a reality that can be deterrent for many, but it’s also what makes a trip most memorable. If everything was exactly scheduled, if it was all that easy, then it would be less fun. The flight that was lost, the food that made you sick, the heat and humidity of the tropics, the poor sleep in seedy hotels, the uncomfortable transportation, the fear felt, the dust, the dirt, are certainly not compared with business class traveling in Europe. But the experience is not comparable either.