Our interview with Ted Nelson from travelingted Travel Blog:
Why did you start travelling?
I began traveling with my dad when I was 10. I went hiking, canoeing, and cross-country skiing when he picked up the activities in his 40s. Since I was exposed to adventure at an early age, it was natural for me to take the next step and begin to explore the rest of the United States and the world. I had the opportunity in college to study abroad in Normandy, France and took a school sponsored trip to Venezuela and absolutely loved it.
What is the most important during your travels?
Outdoor adventure is my number one agenda when visiting any city, state, country. I do enjoy cultural things like food, history, and museums, but a trip to a national park is my first priority. I also love meeting people too. For me interaction with great people goes hand in hand with traveling to remote outdoor places. The people I met in the beautiful jungles, forests, and lakes of the world are like-minded people who I know I will get along with.
What is the most important experience that you had during your travels?
I traveled for 3 months in Southeast Asia about 8 years ago. It was my first time to Asia, and my longest trip. This may not seem like long for Europeans and Australians, but it is epic for people in the United States. I met so many incredible people and saw amazing beautiful places that it cemented my love for travel that had been festering inside of me for all of my life.
What is the most beautiful place that you have been to?
This is a hard question to answer as I have seen many beautiful places, and I cannot answer with one. I will give you my favorite by ecosystem:
Most beautiful lake
Kawnipi Lake in Quetico Provincial Park. This lake is smack dab in this amazing park and takes three days of paddling and hiking to get to. Once you are there it is so worth it. The fishing is incredible and the scenery first rate.
Most beautiful river
The Lower Wisconsin River
Tree colored bluffs and thick forests line this river with golden sandbars and bald eagles flying off every dead tree.
Most beautiful rainforest
Corcovado National Park in Costa Rica – I have never been to such a rich environment with so many animals.
Most beautiful desert
The Chihuahuan Desert in Big Bend National Park. It helps that 7,800 foot mountains rise straight up from it, so you always have something nice to look at.
Most beautiful waterfall
Kaieteur Falls in Guyana
The largest single drop waterfall in the world at 741 feet, which is five times the height of Niagara.
Most beautiful mountains
Great Smoky Mountains
This might surprise people, but I love the forest that drape the Appalachians, and I think the views you get on the Smokies are just as amazing as any craggy, snow covered mountain out west or in Europe.
Most beautiful wetland
Big Cypress National Preserve in Florida
Cyde Butcher is a famous photographer who loves to work out of this preserve, and he says movies have made swamps a thing to fear and dislike. Even though they are full of alligators, spiders, and snakes, they are green, lush, and beautiful and an incredible place to explore.
What do you avoid when you travel?
I avoid fake tourist places. Some places like the Taj Mahal, the Louvre, Angkor Wat are tourist places for a reason because they are amazing and need to be on everyone’s bucket list. Other places like Disneyworld are kind of cheesy and overcrowded and not for me. I am not a big luxury traveler. I enjoy a nice hotel every now and then, but I don’t need too many comforts to thrive.
What is your biggest travel dream?
I would like to do more long term travel in Southeast Asia, India, and South and Central America. I would like to see a tiger in India. I would also like to hike a really long trail like the Appalachian and do some Nordic skiing in Nordic countries like Sweden and Norway.
What are you favourites travelers? Which blogs do you read?
I enjoy more hardcore outdoor travelers like Matt Karsten from Expert Vagabond, PlanetD, Hike Bike Travel, and Brendan Vanson from Brendan’s adventures, but I enjoy travel stories from other niche’s too like Leah from Leah’s Travels, the World Wanderer, and even family travel like Work Mom Travels and Travels with Lance, and of course Karolina and Patryk.