Welcome back to our traveler interview series, Rendezvous with Rovers! This week we’re highlighting Rahma from the Sane Adventurer. We love finding out how other travelers find their way through this amazing world, and we love sharing it with you. There’s nothing more fun than sitting down on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon and drinking in some weekend travel inspiration. We hope you enjoy it.
Please introduce yourself.
My name is Rahma Khan. I’m an electronic engineer by profession and a writer and traveler by passion. Still working a full-day job, I do a lot of freelance writing to support my small travel breaks throughout the year. I am a Pakistani by birth living an expat life in Oman since birth. For most of the early years in my life, the only travel I did was traveling between Pakistan and Oman. However, I feel that that was not the reason for my love for traveling. Rather this passion was inherited to me by my father. He used to travel solo all around the world back in the 80’s long before it was even cool! I have grown up hearing of his travel adventures and playing with his souvenirs and that is exactly what intrigued me to travel beyond the two countries I had ever been to for the longest time in my life! Working a full-time job obviously restricts me to travel more often; however, I still manage to take a trip around three to four local or international destinations each year.
Can you describe your travel philosophy?
My traveling style is really unique which falls somewhere between being a luxury traveler and a backpacker. It mostly depends on the places I am visiting. For example, I visited the Maldives earlier this year and stayed all my five nights in a super luxurious over water bungalow with a Jacuzzi facing the ocean. It was the second most expensive accommodation type which that resort had to offer. Because according to my philosophy if I am visiting the Maldives not staying in an over-water bungalow doesn’t make any sense! On the contrary, I visited Georgia (the country) and stayed in hostels all throughout my stay. The reason being that I didn’t feel the need to spend any extra bucks for staying in luxurious hotels or resorts as my plan was to stay out for the whole day and only return to the hostel to sleep.
I take pride in calling myself a ‘Pro-Planner’, as everyone says that I am too good at travel planning. I don’t disagree with them either. I am personally a very organized person and that really helps me in planning out my trips. You might call me a weirdo but I have planned for the trips which I’m not going on for at least the next two years! Yes, I am obsessed with travel planning. Calling travel agents has never been an option for me. Also, I think it is more economical to plan your trips yourself rather than having it done by travel agents.
When it comes to packing, I am someone not even near to being a light packer! I pack more than I will need on my trip. I think the reason being so is that I have to struggle to plan all of my travels around work holidays or my very limited work leaves, so I want to enjoy it in full luxury (which according to me is looking well-dressed in all of those Instagram pictures!) I am low-key obsessed with dressing so I carry all of my best outfits, accessories, shoes with me to wherever I go!
Do you travel alone or with a partner?
I don’t really have particular travel partner preferences while traveling, I have traveled with my boyfriend, best friend, family, and solo too! Moreover, I have equally enjoyed traveling every single time irrespective of who comes along with me. However, I carefully choose where to travel with whom and I think that’s what matters the most. I don’t really believe in finding your significant other while traveling. It is something I would not like to do. Nonetheless, if anyone really wants to look into finding a travel partner, it could be anyone whose company you enjoy and more importantly someone whose travel preferences align with yours.
What types of things are you interested in while you are traveling?
As my blog name indicates, ‘The Sane Adventurer’, I am all about doing adventures while traveling! I love to stay outdoors for the maximum time possible during all of my trips to absorb the vibe and charm of the place. However, I like to take my travel days easy and not jam-packed. Though I try to make full use of my time in the place I am traveling to, it is all planned in a way that it doesn’t reach the level of getting exhausted.
What are some of the places that you just found enchanting during your travels?
My trip to the Maldives was one of the best trips of my life. It is the calming vibe of being on a gorgeous island, staying at a luxury resort with nature at its best all around, which made my Maldives trip so special. Many people think that the Maldives is rather a boring place to visit, but trust me there is so much to do there! I can easily spend a day staring at the beautiful waves on a white sand beach while sipping coconut water. Visiting the Maldives is all about the rejuvenation of the soul. The country has so much relaxation and calmness to offer and take you away from all the chaos of life.
How did you get started travel blogging?
I always had a flair for writing after being a freelance writer for six years now. Seeing my love to travel the world, my friends persuaded me to finally start a travel blog. However, for the longest time, I was really skeptical of doing so as I used to think that travel blogging is already way too saturated and why would anyone read my blog when there is so much better content out there already. Eventually, it was my boyfriend who very candidly once told me that “whatever you will write, it will be the best” and that really gave me that much-needed push!
Coincidently, at the same time, one of my favorite travel bloggers released her blogging course and I understand the signs which the universe was trying to tell me. And that’s how I ended up with my very own travel blog called The Sane Adventurer. I still have a very new blog; I call it my baby, which still needs lots and lots of nurturing to grow. But I cannot deny the fact that I am already in love with blogging! In addition, to being a great way to document all of my travels, blogging has also helped me to learn about so many things which I wouldn’t have known anything about! In my opinion, the most rewarding part about blogging is that it gives you an empty canvas to color it with your thoughts, memories, and experiences of something which is very close to your heart. In my case, it is traveling. However, blogging is also not all that fancy as it may seem. It is a lot of hard work and commitment, which you have to abide with no matter if you’re boarding a flight or road tripping with friends (yes, I have been blogging in both of those scenarios).
Do you have a place, experience, or food that stands out as one of your favorites?
All of my trips local, international or staycations, everything is extremely close to my heart. However, if I have to name a trip as ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ journey, it would definitely be my trip to Georgia in 2017. That one trip was filled with all the misfortunes I could ever have in life! From getting an eye infection right before the night of my travel, my luggage being misplaced by the airline, to the immigration officers almost detaining me, every bad thing possible happened to me during that one trip! Also, I had the only haunted experience of my life in Georgia. Nonetheless, during that trip, I did paragliding for the very first time and traveled around the gorgeous Caucasus mountains with my best friend! It is surely one of my favorite trips up till now for good and the bad reasons!
What is your next destination and what are you looking forward to doing there?
My next and the first destination for 2019 is Nepal. I am planning to go trekking for seven days in the Everest region with my best friend. Nepal has been one of my dream destinations to visit for all the adventure activities the country has to offer. Moreover, this trip will also be a self-examination for me to know my strengths and willpower of stepping out from my comfort zone.
If you could inspire someone to start traveling, which place would you recommend to him or her as a good starting destination and why?
For any first time traveler, the best place to travel is around your own country. Often looking at the beautiful pictures from all over the world, we tend to overlook the beauty of the country we are living in. Therefore, the best way to starting traveling is to travel around your home country as it will be easier to communicate and more importantly manage your finances which is a very essential part of travel planning.
Do you have any other stories, info, advice, etc. that you would love to tell us?
I still think that I am very new to traveling by only being ten countries old as of now. However, what I have learned from my traveling journey is that most of the people think that travel is a luxury, but in reality, it is nothing even close to being a luxury. Traveling is all about knowing your strengths and weaknesses and how you perceive yourself under different circumstances. My only advice would be to research about a place as much as possible before planning and always plan for a trip with someone who has the same travel preferences as you. Otherwise, no matter how amazing the final destination is, you would fail to enjoy it. Lastly, let nothing stop you from traveling. It is an unparalleled feeling of being in a new land around people you don’t know. Keep hustling harder to travel as much as possible.
Author Bio: Corinne Vail is a travel photographer, food lover, and a perpetual traveler who has been travel writing for over 14 years. For many years she lived overseas in Germany, Japan, Turkey, South Korea, and the Netherlands teaching the children of the US. military. She’s visited over 90 countries, and she’s not stopping anytime soon.