Our Interview with Chris Walker-Bush from aussieontheroad.com Travel Blog:
- Why Did You Start Traveling?
It’s hard to pinpoint what gave me such incurable wanderlust. I remember moving around a lot as a child due to my father’s work, but it wasn’t until I’d graduated from university that I realized I still had trouble staying in one place for long. I became addicted to the feeling of discovering new restaurants, meeting new people, and wandering new streets. Early on, this just meant I moved from city to city a lot – but one day I had the opportunity to teach in South Korea and I was hooked!
I’ve just returned to Australia after two and a half years in China that also saw me visit the Philippines, South Korea (again), the US (again), Cambodia, Thailand, England, and Scotland. Even though it’s great to be home, I’m already planning my next trip!
- What is the most important during your travels?
For me, the most important thing for a traveler to have is an open mind and the ability to be flexible. Life on the road is often challenging, and you’re hurting yourself if you get easily upset or let setbacks spoil your fun. It’s possible to have a good time anywhere – be it a sunny stretch of beach in the Philippines, a rainy dorm room in Franz Josef in New Zealand, or battling altitude sickness in a bumpy van along China’s Karakorum Highway.
- What is the most important experience that you had during your travels?
That’s a tough one! I’ve had so many wonderful, life changing, and entertaining experiences while on the road. I’ve made friends, fallen in and out of love, and grown immensely as a person since leaving Australian shores in 2007. I’m going to go a bit outside the box here and say that it was probably taking up running while living in South Korea. I was unhealthy and only getting moreso, so taking running was a Godsend. Since then I’ve run races and generally managed to keep myself in some semblance of shape thanks to the lessons I learned from my ex-girlfriend when she introduced me to the sport.
- What is the most beautiful place you have been to?
It’s a bit odd to say that a place in industrialized, overcrowded China has been the most beautiful – but I’d have to say that Jiuzhaigou National Park was the most stunning. High up in the mountains in the north of Sichuan province, this national park is a vibrant clash of green trees, impossibly blue water, and the gray skies overhead. After a year of being in a built up Chinese city, it was a literal and figurative breath of fresh air!
- What do you avoid when you travel?
I don’t drink a great deal when I’m on the road. While I love a good night out and enjoy a beer or cocktail (or ten), I tend to think it’s safest not to get too stupidly drunk when traveling. Regardless of the country I’m in, I like to keep my head clear enough that I don’t make any stupid and possibly life-changing mistakes that I’ll wake up to regret. If I’m with friends on the road, I’m more likely to let my hair down (not that I have any) – but when I’m solo, I play it safe.
- What is your biggest travel dream?
Another tough one! There are so many places I still need to go, and my bucket grows faster than I can check things off of it! I guess it would be to have visited every continent. I checked off Europe earlier this year and I’m headed to Africa in November, so that just leaves South America. There’s so much I want to see and do there too, so I’d better get saving!
- Who are your favourite travelers? Who do you read?
I have a huge list of blogs I read on my site, but if I had to pick a few favourites:
– Anthony Middleton – Man vs Clock
– Toni White – Reclaiming My Future
– Mel Shearer – The Mellyboo Project
– Byron Kerr – Byron & His Backpacks
– Kaitlyn Burke – Where is Kait?