At the age of 15 I boarded a plane with a group of American students bound for a month in Europe. As our bus drove from the airport into the streets of Rome, I was mesmerized by the world I saw outside my window. It was so different to life in my home country. Over the course of that month, I fell head over heels in love with travel.
Listening to different languages; tasting foods previously unknown to me; discovering that every place has a distinct aroma; feasting my eyes on the beauty of our planet; feeling soft leather and shimmery silks, the many textures of a place became indelible memories. Travel awakened all of my senses and I knew that it would be an important part of my life.
As the years rolled by, my love of travel increased and I found that short holidays from the office weren’t enough. In 2013, I set out to travel full-time and the next year I found a new love: the Philippines. I arrived with a backpack and a bag of dive gear planning to stay for a month and let the diving guide me. I stayed for three and explored well beyond the diving hotspots. The caves of Sagada and the traditional tribes in the north enchanted me, the beaches of Bohol, Boracay, and Palawan spoiled me, and the diving … I could wax on about the diving for ages. My love for the Philippines and its warm-hearted people runs deep and helping others experience this incredible nation brings me nothing but joy.
When my travels took me to Malaysia, I knew I’d found another nation to love. This multicultural country is often overlooked by visitors to Southeast Asia yet it has so much to offer. Borneo is full of incredible wildlife, fascinating cultures, and achingly beautiful landscapes. Climbing Mount Kinabalu was an experience I’ll always treasure as watching the sunrise at the summit was so humbling and uplifting. Diving the clear waters of the Celebes and South China Seas and digging my toes into the white sands along the way brought me one smile after another. Western Malaysia offers incredible food, culture, beaches, cities, tropical landscapes, and more than a few surprises. Wandering the streets of Penang looking at the art and nibbling my way through Malay, Indian, Chinese, and Nyonya specialities always leaves me wanting more.
I’ve traveled extensively across six continents but the Philippines, Malaysia, and the rest of Southeast Asia have captured my heart. I spend as much of the year as I can in the countries that frame the Coral Triangle: Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia. I’m an avid diver, hiker, and lover of finding fruits and vegetables that have no names in the English language.
Enquire about a trip to the Philippines, Borneo, or Malaysia now!
A Word of Wisdom...
“At least once in every journey, travel by local transport. Some of the most memorable conversations I’ve had have occurred in the back of jeepneys, trucks, and in the passenger seats of tricycles and tuk-tuks. You’ll gain insight into daily life and see your destination the way locals do.” Marbree, Philippines, Borneo, and Malaysia Specialist
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