Interviews (Guest Posts)

Guest Interview – Boulevard Browser

Avi from Boulevard Browser

This week’s guest post comes from Boulevard Browser. He explains that he ‘got tired of analyzing businesses and making growth plans, and decided to take a break and enjoy life and live life.  And now he is hoping and thinking how to make this break last longer.  Forever. During his travels, he has done many firsts for himself such as bungee jumping, trekking to 10,000ft, scuba diving without learning swimming, rock climbing, months long road trip and traveling to unknown and strange countries for many.  However he still has not seen a volcano, even higher mountains, watching crazy pink and orange sky sunsets, more higher and bigger waterfalls, white sand beaches, hot springs, and old cities and countries and are on to-be covered list.’

Avi from Boulevard Browser
Avi from Boulevard Browser

1. What is your name and where do you come from?  

My name is Avi, and I come from Chandigarh, India, ~250km north of New Delhi.  Chandigarh is a small city by India’s standard.  It’s population is little over a million.  Chandigarh is the first planned city of India and was designed by French architect Le Corbusier.  Chandigarh has recently been considered as possibly the only perfect city in the world by BBC.

2. What sort of traveller are you? Full time / part time / business / backpacker etc?  

I am a backpacker on lookout for new cultures and history or mountains.  I traveled for about 9 months in 2015. First a road trip in India from north west to east and then to South East Asia covering Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos, in this order.  Came back home towards holidays to take care of an injured knee, and start my blog.

3. How do you fund your travelling?  

Currently I am using my personal savings to travel.

4. Where is the best place you have ever been and why?  

I first thought Spain was the best that can ever be, but after seeing Vietnam and spending two months their, Vietnam is the best so far for me.  I liked Vietnam for almost every thing, felt it to be more of a complete country.  It has history, full spectrum of nature – mountains, beaches – white sand too!, caves. More importantly I liked its people and culture.  I have not come across such friendly and nice people before.  It was again people and culture of Spain which attracted me, but combined with all other aspects of it – nature, history, and the congestion, tad more than India, I feel more at home in Vietnam.

5. Where is the worst place you have ever been and why?  

I have not visited any country which I will totally detest.  But yes, in terms of least liking / preference, Cambodia would be the one.  I was very disappointed and disgusted to see the dirt / garbage around the royal palace in Phnom Phenh, bag snatching reputation, lack of road signs and ease of self movement.  Plus I found it to be tad expensive for what it offers.  Angkor Wat temples where the biggest flop show for me!

6. Do you have a Bucket List? If so where are the 3 top places on it?  

I want to see and do many places and things.  As I travel, wishes only increase in number 🙂 I have trekked to 11,000ft on the 3rd highest peak of the world – Mt. Kanchenjunga, Sikkim.  This was my first trek and is considered to be a tough trek due to steepness of steps.  I now want to trek to the base camp of Mt. Everest if not more.  Plus I want to see a volcano and go to Iceland and Croatia as I have heard they are very beautiful counties esp natural beauty in Croatia.

7. What 3 things (apart from the essentials – food/water etc) do you always travel with?  

Camera and my tripod, as I like to click pictures, basic antibiotics and my iPhone.  But I think I will be making it a point soon to travel once for few days without my phone 🙂

8. What makes you happy and why?

Exploring / seeing new things always excite me.  To be more specific, history / museums or high altitude / Mountains makes me happy.  Since I like history, so finding and visiting museums is my first thing to lookout for and they help in understanding why a place is what it is today.  Mountains are prefect place to relax and rest with the scenic beauty they offer plus the cool to cold weather providing respite from heat.  Also, I have somehow always liked life and people of mountains.  Across different places / countries, I have found them to be simple, honest, and reliable.  And this is what I look for in people with whom I interact or deal with.

9. How long have you been blogging and why did you start?

Though I registered my domains / handles in June last year before leaving for my SE Asia trip, I become active on Instagram few weeks later and on Twitter after the new year holiday.  I am still populating content on my blog – www.boulevardbrowser.com and hope to finish backlog this month.  I started blogging for three reasons – 1) to document and share my travel memories and experiences.  2). make it as the most neutral and authentic place for info.  I have come across many blogs where after reading, you cannot evaluate a place objectively or are on reaching a place, find it to be bit different from what you were expecting after research / reading.  I hope to make www.boulevardbrowser.com a place where viewers can say yes, they know what to expect and are not surprised by finding something else after visiting that place.  This is why I have two sections on my blog.  Travel Destination.  Here you can find the info / facts only.  Second is the usual blog section which lists my experiences, the way I see it and tips which I think are useful to follow when traveling based on my experiences and preferences.  I am a lazy fellow, and always look for least effort options.  And Bill Gates too once said he would hire a lazy fellow to find the easiest way of doing a job.  Hope readers will find it an interesting read 🙂  3) Third reason is that India is still relatively unknown place for many due to various reasons.  Tourists limit themselves to the small golden triangle or couple of more places and not more.  So I wish to dispel any myth / fear that a traveller may have and expand the tourist area to more beautiful and unexplored parts of India.  More importantly, a place can be best known only from a local and not through traveller.  So as local resident, I think I can better explain and list all places to travel in India

10. What makes your blog unique and why should people read it?  

Uniqueness I think comes from the neutrality of it.  Travel destination section paints or describes a place the way it is, minus personal bias.  So a reader gets all info he wants and can make up his own mind.  Through the blog section he can read my experiences and try to validate his thoughts / expectation / concerns which might be there.  Since I travel slow,  I tend to understand and absorb the feel of a place by staying there over longer period of time.  Plus I tend to see a place by either walking or by bicycle.  I also tend to use public transport where available, allowing me to absorb more and give me more detail, and experience to understand a place and its daily life.  This is what I think a reader also wants and expects to get after reading a blog – understand the place.  As a bonus, I hope, viewers will enjoy browsing through my gallery and get a feel of the place.

From ESLT – Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions Avi. Wow your hometown sounds so beautiful. Vietnam is on my Bucket List to it’s nice to read that you enjoyed it so much. Hopefully one day we will get there and experience it for ourselves. If we ever visit India we know who to come to for local knowledge. We look forward to reading your updates. Safe travels 🙂 
You can also find Boulevard Browser on Twitter and Instagram
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