World Map of the Best Quality / Price Destinations, Through the Eyes of a Man Who Visited Them All

Using leverage for your dollar in choosing your next holiday destination is super important. People sometimes focus too much on the hype from what they heard of some places without comparing them to others. An example of this is the typical holiday in Maldives or Seychelles as a beach destination. Having visited both a few years ago, I liked the islands but it definitely isn’t’ better than Thailand or beaches around  Mexico and the Caribbean. Seems like all this publicity from Hollywood movies and advertisement in Forbes magazine worked out for them as people rank them as their “dream destination” while they can do a week to Punta Cana or the Riviera Maya for a fraction of the price.  Same applies for Mountain destinations… why travel to the typical Swiss mountains or Western Canada, while you can get better quality mountains in Argentina and Chile for Cheaper and […]

Read More...

Cities I’ve Been Map (188/196 Countries) – Update December 2017

Each year or so, I update my map with the app “Cities I’ve Been” app on Facebook, and have done so for the last 10 years. This was my way to track my way through the world when I was at the stage of going anywhere whenever I felt like it and wasn’t necessarily counting the countries I’ve been to. I’ve never really been a “Country Counter” until I was getting close to 150 and newspapers started asking for my current count, as well as I wanted to have a way to measure the distance I have traveled. As a world adventurer, my Travel Map is really what I am proud of, much more than my “countries Ive been” map. It is really not that really that hard anymore to travel the 196 countries as it once was with all the flights getting cheaper. There […]

Read More...

Angola – (Country 188/196) – One of my Favorite Cities in Africa

Angola was my last country of the 5 Portuguese colonies in Africa after Sao Tome and Principe, and I would have come much earlier if t wasn’t for the exhaustive visa procedures that are so hard that I had to wait to my 188th country to pay it a visit. Fortunately for my arrival, I had some contacts to receive me. Some Angolan friends from 5 years ago when I lived in Salvador de Bahía in Brazil. Young Angolan Capitan And what a reception! Thanks to my friend Karina (photo above) who warmly welcomed me with arms wide open, I had the opportunity to see Luanda as locals do it! With a carefully prepared plan she had prepared, Karina and I rumbled the capital from navigated to nearby islands, attending he nieces baptism as well as partying the night away in trendy Luanda Beach clubs […]

Read More...

São Tome & Principe – (Country 187/196)

Set as a paradise island off the coast of Central Africa, Sao Tome was long on my list of countries to visit ever since I spent time in Cabo Verde back in 2014. Caberverdian friends had told me they considered Sao Tome as their little sister country, and now I must admit that was particularly true. Both are African, both are islands, both are Portuguese colonies and are very reliant on Portugal, as I later noticed with the massive Portugues community on Sao Tome. Downtown São Tome “Viva Brazil” I was told a few times as thats where local saotomeans beleived I was from, guessing from the my accent in Portugues. To me, it was them that felt Brazilian to me… Not because of their accent (sounds much more like Portuguese from Portugal to my ear) but because of their nice little colonial capital. Sao […]

Read More...

Gabon – Country #186/196 (10 Countries Left)

Arriving in Gabon didn’t feel too unfamiliar after being in Brazzaville for a while. Both nations are actually pretty similar economically, being two of the most developed central African Nation and even in Africa. Gabon has one of Africa’s highest GDP per Capita and it was felt as soon as I arrived at Libreville’s shiny airport, definitely an upgrade compared to most African Nations I’ve visited. Gabon enjoyed rapid growth after independence from France, mostly because of its rich resources such as diamonds and gold, but mostly Wood. But most of its economic boom has come from the oil boom which catapulted Libreville into a model African Economy where people from all over the world come to work for a high wage. As soon as I wandered around the city I could see this, with nice roads, clean streets and nice cars all over the […]

Read More...

Country 185/196 – Republic of Congo – a Wedding in a Great African Family

Ahhh “Brazza la Verte”, as it was called traditionally by the French (literally, Brazza the Green). After Experiencing its big brother the Democratic Republic of Congo last week, I was happy to see this new country that was acclaimed by the French as hosting their most important city in Central Africa, separated only by the Congo river to Kinshasa which was held by the Belgians. From the corniche of Brazzaville, we can clearly see the buildings of Kinshasa with its 9 million inhabitants, making them the two closest capitals in the world. As much as there are similarities between the two countries like having basically the same people, it does feel quite different on the ground. View of Brazzaville from the Sky First, the Republic of Congo is quite definitely the most French-speaking nation I have encountered in sub-Saharan Africa, many people choosing to speak […]

Read More...

Country 184/196: DR Congo (Zaire) – Climbing the World’s Most Dangerous Volcano

Not even two weeks since I climbed the world’s biggest crater, the Khartala in the Comoros Islands, it was now time to climb the world’s most dangerous volcano: The Nyiragongo in the Democratic Republic of Congo. My Legs had barely recovered from the pain of climbing the 2300 meters of the Khartala, that I now had to climb to another Summit, this time at about 3500 meters of altitude. But the reward for this second climb was unparalleled; a crater filled with a massive Lava Lake, one of the few visible in any volcano around the world and being the biggest lava lake in the world. View of Goma and Lake Kivu from the Top of the Nyiragongo Back in 2002, the Nyiragongo erupted and rivers of lava started flowing directly towards the city of Goma where I was staying, a 1 million inhabitant city and was […]

Read More...

Rwanda Might Become The Next Digital Nomad Hub of Africa

Anybody who has traveled around Africa knows the roads are Bumpy… Literally! Over the 44 Countries I have visited in Africa so far, I encountered some over-inflated economies making it impossible to find a decent place to sleep under 200$, some are left in ruins by wars and tribal conflicts, some have no interest in tourism at all, some have no intercity transport adapted for travellers other than shared taxis filled with 10 people crushed like sardines, others are enjoying some stability but as soon as you step out of the beaten track it is back to harsh traveling conditions. Malaria and diseases are the other issues that constraint travelers to always be on their guards on the continent. Fortunately, some African countries are getting their head out of the sand. South Africa being an exception (as it is up to European standards), East Africa […]

Read More...

The Comoros: (Country 183/196)

It’s been a while that I want to visit these islands, but flights flying there were so hard to synchronize with my travels that I had to wait. The Comoros are 3 tiny islands between Mozambique and Madagascar which have a very interesting culture. It was inhabited by the Persians, Arabs, Pirates from Portugal and the Swahilis. Then the French came to colonize the islands and leave a big trace of French culture all over the islands, resulting in a similar vibe to other ex-french colonies of the Indian ocean like La Reunion and Mauritius. The Summit of the Kartala Volcano I first arrived in Mayotte, the 4th island and which is still part of France. I quickly jumped to Moroni the Capital of the Comoros and met with friends who invited me to Hike the Karthala the next morning, Comoros’s famous Volcano, one of […]

Read More...

Eritrea – (Country #182)

Wow, wow, and again… Wow! What a beautiful surprise that was waiting for me hidden among the mountains in my last stop in the Horn of Africa: Eritrea! This ex-Italian colony, also known as “The Rome of Africa” by the locals, definitely deserves its title! I could go as far as calling it “The Best Kept Secret of Africa!”… Arriving here was like a miracle after the desertic landscapes of Djibouti and Somalia. Just a few months ago I rated Algiers as my #1 most beautiful city in Africa. I guess we have a contender for the title, Asmara, the Capital of Eritrea, is definitely in my top 3 that’s for sure! Beautiful Asmara at Sunrise The city is by far the cleanest city I’ve ever been in Africa, as well as one of the safest! Being at about 2300 meters above sea level, I […]

Read More...