Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Adventure Travel Talk

at UST Seminary Gym for a Tourism class' event on Adventure Travel
 I was invited to an event in University of Santo Tomas (Tourism class), not knowing at first that the talk was about Adventure travel.  I do 'my usual' mountaineering talk here and there, but an adventure travel-themed one was something new.  "Eh napasubo na ako" (blind commitment?) so I just jumped in. :)
  Anyway, I hope that I was able to impart something new to the audience, and here's to share a short version of what I've shared.

First issue we encounter to pursue our adventure dream (aside from the perpetual money and time issues) is finding opportunity.  Better if free or cheap.  Joining an organization or club increases one's chance in finding options. Creating an event for me is one of the best options, although tiring - it's a lot more fulfilling.  Finding a stint (that pays a bit) related to adventure travel is a sure hit - photographer? travel writer? or in my lucky case, a host of a wildlife/nature TV show.
Travel adventure is not just about 'tour', of taking pictures of nice things or doing some adrenalin actitivites. It opens our eyes to reality, it makes us understand the world around us.  Understand the 'life connections' - the web of life, the biosphere - and the planet where we live in.

To know the good and the bad. 'The bad' examples: Hiking will let you see dead forests and denuded mountains. Scuba diving will let you see abused coral reef, trash problem can be seen in rivers, seas and mountains, other activities will let you see other ailments of this world.  In the picture, world (IUCN/CITES) protected species are still poached in the Philippines like this Devil (Manta) ray, as well as sharks.

along the way, we learn how to care - how to protect our living planet.  Pic - installing hard substrate (artificial reef) to expand the habitat of hard corals and other life forms.

By adding a social or eco component to our adventures - it makes the endeavor more meaningful and more fulfilling.   Pic - my team from UPMountaineers kayaked around Taal volcano island for 7 hours - for a cause,  we provided a ton of school supply for 350 kids in the tiny school.

Anywhere, anytime we travel, any way we can - no matter how small.  Here in a small village in Nepal (2008) distributing crayons to little kiddos.
And maybe, we can change this world into a better place.  Little by little, one adventure travel at a time.  Pic - I just re-used this UPM's (Fredd) picture of IPO watershed project.  We used this IPO project as 'adventure for a cause' where participants hiked, crossed river, ride a boat, climb a hill - to plant or nurture trees.
Another learning - along the way, we may just discover a big personal dream. Something we really want to do.  Then it will give us better focus in our future travel adventures.  Pic - here climbing the highest mountain in the Philippines, Mt Apo.  I 'discovered' my dream of climbing the 7 Summits after my Africa travel, after I successfully climb Mt Kilimanjaro. 
The journey helped me appreciate life a lot, lot more. I learned a lot, about myself and the world, the good experiences and fulfillment are undescribable and it propelled me to forever continue my adventure journey...
We dream big, we follow through, and if lucky - we achieve!  And add more satisfaction and appreciation in life...

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