Travelling is many things to travellers: a chance to explore new places, see parts unknown, try exotic foods, experience the local culture and push your limits. As much as I love and crave international adventures, I must admit that a lot of these things can also be experienced at home. So as much as I’m a firm believer in being excited about travel, I also think there’s a case to be made for finding adventures at home. I call doing so “homestoke”, meaning to seek out amazing adventures while at home between trips. As a non-digital nomad, to me this is sustainable travel. I can fill up my wanderlust cup at home while saving money and time for big adventures abroad. I consider myself fortunate enough to live in a place that gives me ample opportunities for these mini-vacations.
As our world becomes more urban, I often wonder if it’s possible to get a feel for a country without seeing its capital when travelling. Cities offer a different perspective on daily life, unique opportunities for entertainment, as well as a bustling and exciting environment. That being said, cities can also present a certain set of challenges and this was most evident during our trip to Kampala.
A lot is made of the alternates while travelling. For instance, many recommend you track chimpanzees in Uganda instead of gorillas since it’s less expensive. but I’ve always wondered if the alternates truly measure up. We set off to climb Mount Elgon in Uganda to figure out how travel alternates measure up.
Few things can harsh a traveller’s Zen more violently than getting sick on the road. It can be difficult just to get around and meet your needs in a strange place, but doing so when you’re sick is even more challenging.
To that end, my resolve was pushed to its limits when I came down with a mystery illness during a trip to Uganda. Having pushed myself physically with hikes in the Rwenzoris and Bwindi Impenetrable Forest, and whitewater kayaking on the Nile, I felt strong and in good shape for our 4 day climb up Mount Elgon, but an illness nearly flattened me.
Even the most Zen of travellers knows that keeping your spirits up in bad weather can be challenging. Especially if you are cold and wet, physically tired, mentally exhausted, or experiencing any other common travel-related ailment. Yet more often than not there are hard-won views, memorable experiences or at the very least, an important lesson to learn to make continuing on worthwhile. This was the case when we went trekking in the Rwenzori Mountains of Uganda…in the rain.