Claudia! A Former Human Rights Lawyer Turns A Traveler And Blogger

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Jovago Pakistan recently interview Claudia a travel blogger from Italy.

She recently participated in a roundup post done by Jovago Myanmar on “Traveling in Budget” with 40+ travel bloggers. Check out her interview here.

Let us start with a formal introduction. Who is Claudia?

I grew up in Cagliari, the capital of the gorgeous island of Sardinia (Italy). For as much as I travel, this is where I always want to go back to. I love spending the summer here, as there are the most beautiful beaches in the world. And Sardinia is also a great destination for hiking!

I am a former human rights lawyer. I used to work in academia, researching and teaching international human rights law; and with NGOs, mostly doing consultancies. Although I loved my job, I was itching to see more of the world and the typical 3 weeks trip I’d take every year was not enough anymore. So, when my contract expired in 2013, I didn’t seek renewal and took the chance to backpack around Latin America. I haven’t stopped traveling since!

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I opened my blog after a very eventful trip to Cuba, when I realized that what I had read online about the country was not even remotely close to what I saw once there. I wanted to give my own version of things. To date, I still aim to give a very honest opinion about the places I visit.

How and when you developed interest for traveling?

I have always had it! I actually don’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t feel curious about far away places. My first trip overseas was to Spain, with my parents, when I was 8 years old. Everything looked so different and exciting, that the adrenaline kick I got from it became addictive.

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How do you plan and manage your finances for traveling?

It’s very simple: every single penny I manage to save, goes into my travel addiction.

What is that triggers you to travel to an entirely new destination?

Pretty much anything. It can be a photo, a story I hear, a book I read, a blog post or even the food I would like to try.

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While visiting a new destination what two things your love to explore the most?

I enjoy a good mixture of city life and nature. Wherever I go, I typically try to spend a few days in a city, wandering around aimlessly and shooting pictures casually. I love how the daily life of people can be portrayed in a photo, it’s like a window into their culture.

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But then, I feel the urge to search for peace and quiet – that’s when I go hiking, or get off the beaten path.

How do you plan your destinations?

I actually don’t. Sometimes I get invited to visit a destination. Sometimes it’s a last minute decision. I am curious about all places, so I won’t really plan too much!

Do you have any funny travel stories?

I have plenty. One I love to tell is that of when I attempted to sail from Panama to Colombia and had to come to terms with my terrible sea sickness. While everyone on board was having a good time – playing cards while we sailed, sunbathing, eating and chatting – I spent my time bent in two with nausea, unable to stand, and being forced to pee in the hole of the helm as going to the toilet below the deck was not an option. I guess now I know my limits.

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Have you had any bad experiences whilst travelling?

Some – and they are typically due to tourist scams I fall for. I have learned my lesson the hard way, in Cuba.

How do you manage when interacting with people without speaking their language?

I find that a good combination of English, Spanish (whenever I am in a Spanish speaking country), whatever little French I know, and smiles go a long way. And if everything fails, I take out my smartphone and use google translate.

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Which destination you felt is not actually like you had imagined before?

India. I was expecting to feel overwhelmed by the chaos, the crowds and the pollution. Instead, I found it so interesting, so magical, so colorful and so friendly that I completely relaxed. I loved it.

Any 3 money saving tips you would like to share while traveling?

Eat local, for as much as possible. Wherever the locals eat, there’s bound to be the best and cheapest food.

Use local transportation whenever possible. It may be slower and significantly less comfortable, but it’s much much cheaper and it is also a good opportunity to befriend locals.

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Try to gather groups of like-minded travelers to go on guided tours, so you can share the prices of a guide and of transportation.

What do you like the most about traveling?

I think the thing I like the most about traveling is meeting new people and experiencing new cultures.

What do you dislike about traveling?

I can’t stand tourists behaving badly and lacking respect to the local culture. And I am just as annoyed by locals who see tourists only as money and not as human beings.

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What do you take back from your expeditions?

Lots of memories, amazing pictures, and a few fridge magnets.

Your trips low on the pocket or you like to make it extravagant?

I try to go as low on the pocket as possible – but within reason.

Did you ever think of traveling to Pakistan?

I have never considered that, to date.

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If you get a chance to visit Pakistan what are the 3 destination you would prioritize to explore?

Naltar Valley, Lahore and the Punjab.

What is Pakistan’s current perception in International travelers and international travel blogger’s community?

To be fair, I don’t know any blogger who has visited Pakistan so I can’t really say much about it. I used to have a Pakistani friend when I lived in England, and she was truly a lovely girl – so my guess is that people are really nice over there.

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With these questions, Jovago came to an end of the interview.

You can fine more about Claudia and her travel journeys on www.myadventuresacrosstheworld.com.

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