WSGT‘s next Travel Influencers, Stefan and Sebastien, are out to discover the best in international gay travel. Their blog, Nomadic Boys, has steadily gained popularity since 2014 for its practical tips and support of local LGBT businesses. Nomadic Boys was previously interviewed as part of the ZipKick Blogger series, see it here.
1.)Where was the first place that you traveled that made you think WOW—travel is amazing (think history book come to life or …..)
Mongolia! This is one destination that totally blew our minds. The Gobi Desert is simply stunning – with some scenery you’ve never seen before.
At one of the ger camps we stayed we got lucky and watched a fiddler playing to the camels. The aim was just to soothe them so they could sleep (in this case there was no mother/child issue). And you know what? It worked! Tears started to fall down the camels’ cheeks and gradually, one by one, they closed their eyes and went into a deep slumber.
This was one of the most beautiful moments we’ve experienced during our travels. And what made it even more special? The whole thing was with the most incredible sunset over the Gobi Desert.
2.)If you had unlimited resources, where would you go and what would you do?
Stefan’s dream is to go to Antarctica, play with the penguins and just exist in the mysterious vast nothingness of the 7th continent. Sebastien on the other hand dreams of doing a big road trip across the States, trying a burger in each one.
For both of us, The Galapagos Islands are our number one bucket list destination we really want to go to and we have therefore organised a gay luxury cruise for our readers this October.
3.)What were you afraid to do and how did you find the courage to overcome it?
The Trans Siberian railway was the first part of our big trip together in 2014 and we did it in budget 3rd class. You essentially co-exist for days in a large carriage with 40 other non-English speakers with questionable hygiene standards. It was a dream of ours to travel on this famous train ride but we were ambivalent at first, particularly as Russia is not the friendliest nation to gays. Turns out it was a lot of fun and whilst you need to be careful travelling as a gay couple in countries like Russia, it’s not as bad as our media makes it out to be.
4.)What apps do you use regularly that make your life easier?
XE currency and Google Maps. Both are staple and we are so dependant on them.
We have written about some of our favourite gay travel apps. In countries with backwards laws towards gays like Russia, or where it’s illegal to be gay, like India, Malaysia, Sri Lanka etc, there are no open gay bars etc. So apps like Grindr literally become the gay scene and for gay travellers to such countries, these apps are a must to make local friends and tap into where any underground parties maybe taking place.
5.)What place do you wish more people have seen?
Philippines is a destination crying out to be seen. It’s stunning – a country made up of over 7000 islands, each with its own unique deserted idyllic beach. If like us you love beaches, snorkelling and diving, you’ll also fall in love with the Philippines. See our video.
6.)Best advice you have been given and by whom?
“Just go for it” – by various members of our family. Life is too short and it’s what you make of it. As long as you’re smart with what you want to achieve, you’re only cheating yourself if you don’t push to achieve what you want in life.
7.)When were you surprised by the kindness of strangers on a trip?
On our final morning in Yangon, Myanmar, we woke early at the crack of dawn to see the monks’ almsgiving ceremony on the streets outside (camera in hand). We then had to hurry to get to the airport to get our return flight back to Bangkok.
Stefan, excited with his photos, was going through them in the taxi and moving them on to his laptop in the car. But fatigue got hold of him (remember it was an early start) and we FORGOT our camera in that taxi! We didn’t realise until that evening when we arrived at our friend’s house in Bangkok and were unpacking.
We were livid!
But – we contacted our hotel in Yangon. Guess what? The taxi driver found the camera, returned it to the hotel and the next day they arranged for one of their guests to bring it with them on their flight to Bangkok to meet us and return it to us. Can you believe that? Anywhere else in the world, a taxi driver would have just kept it right?
It goes without saying, we were truly astonished and humbled by the kindness of that taxi driver and hotel staff of Three Seasons Guesthouse in Yangon!
8.)What inspired you to travel for extended periods of time or live in a new country?
We were both in jobs we were half hearted about back in London. Stefan was a lawyer and Sebastien an IT consultant. We didn’t hate it, it was just a very comfortable way to lead life without much excitement. Travelling and the idea of working remotely online was always a dream of ours, so we strived to find a way to combine the two and have not looked back since!
9.)I travel because….
Travelling is the only thing you spend money on that truly makes your life richer.
Nomadic Boys recommends: We highly recommend the Facebook groups for bloggers. Not FB pages, but groups. Our favourite is the one run by Mapping Megan and Talon of 1Dad1Kid called “We Travel We Blog.” But this is one of many – there’s literally hundreds of them and they’re an excellent resource for aspiring travel bloggers.
We are gay couple Stefan and Sebastien and have been travelling the world together since 2014 after leaving our lives in London. We created our blog as a platform to record our romantic adventures, write about the different gay scenes and of course, our culinary discoveries.
For every place we visit, we like to make local gay friends to experience the culture and gay scene from their perspective. We also try wherever possible to seek out and support local LGBT businesses, which is particularly important in countries with anti gay laws in place.
As a result, over the past 2 years, our blog gained a great deal of popularity, particularly in the gay community. We started to collaborate with hotel brands, tourism boards and speak at conferences to promote gay travel.
Nomadic Boys has now evolved to become our full time job…well, more than that – it has become our life: our baby! It’s one of the best things to have come out from our relationship.
Keep up-to-date with Nomadic Boys through their:
Our next Travel Influencer interview will be up in a week, follow the series here.