Meet the Nomads – Adrian Qais of SuitQais Diaries

SuitQais Diaries is one of the latest blogs that I’m following. It provides a lot of useful information and helpful travel tips about various destinations in Japan (and other countries too). SuitQais Diaries is authored by Adrian Qais who was born in England but was raised in Oman. Adrian also has traveled extensively and lived in over 40 countries prior to entering the rat race in London in 2009. After a couple of years in the corporate world, Adrian called it quits and left to go back to his nomadic lifestyle.

Learn more about Adrian and follow his adventure at SuitQais Diaries.

But before you click away, check out my short interview with Adrian.

Meet the Nomads - Adrian Qais of Suitqais Diaries

How did you discover your passion for travelling?

“I think after living in Oman (the Middle East) for the first 10 years of my life – travelling was always going to be a passion of mine. Although saying that, I think the time I first donned my backpack and headed out the front door on my own officially sealed the fact that travelling would always be a part of my life.”

What’s the most horrible experience that you’ve had on the road?

“Ah that’s an easy one… the most horrible experience I’ve had on the road was getting kidnapped and robbed in Tanzania after only being in the country for less than 24 hours! I’ve actually written 2 articles about it, which you can check out here…

Kidnapped in Africa – Part One
Kidnapped in Africa – Part Two

What’s the best travel experience that you’ve ever had?

“That’s a tough one. I’ve been lucky enough to have had so many wonderful and different experiences on the road. However, the experience I am most grateful for and the one that changed me for the best has to be my first conservation trip. When I was 18 years old I signed up for a 3-month conservation project with a NGO called ‘GreenForce’.

Every 3 months they send a small group of volunteers to a tiny island in Fiji to survey the surrounding coral reefs. Every day we would wake up at the crack of dawn, eat weevil-infested porridge and go diving in 3 different locations. It was like living a Robinson Crusoe lifestyle. The showers were made from bamboo and buckets with small holes in the bottom, we dug our own toilets…basically everything there was made by volunteers. But what made it so special was the fact that there was a tiny Fijian village on the other side of the island.

Every Sunday we would visit and attend their church services.A Fijian family would ‘adopt’ each volunteering order to understand Fijian culture a little better. I was super lucky, in the fact that my family let me live with them for 10 days and take part in every aspect of Fijian life which was an experience I will never forget.”

Qais

What’s the biggest realization that you’ve got out of travelling?

“Wow… these are good questions! I suppose the biggest realization for me is the importance of travelling. Through travelling I really believe that you become a better person. Not only do your social skills increase, but also your self-awareness. After you experience a different culture I think you appreciate things in your own much more. Not only are you able to get along with people from all walks of life but also you are much more astute and understanding of cultural differences.

If true be told I was going to say, that the biggest realization I’ve got out of travelling is that, you can achieve anything you set your mind too – the only limiting factor is the one you set yourself. I didn’t write this first because I thought it might have been a little too cheesy.”

What keeps you going? What keeps you motivated?

“I’m going to have to disagree with you on this one. I’ve never found travelling tiring or a chore. I get bored very easy, which probably explains why I could never conform to the 9-5 lifestyle. I live to experience different adventures in all shapes and forms. I’m lucky in the fact that my friends and family have always understood why I do it and why I am on the road. They may not want my lifestyle but they understand what makes me happy and vice-versa.

But to answer your questions, living for the next adventure is what keeps me going. And whenever I need to be re-motivated I often stop somewhere on the road for a while (i.e. living in Thailand and teaching Scuba Diving). I find stopping and putting your bag down for a while really helps you rejuvenate and get re-motivated. It’s also good because you get to know a local area really well and make some real friends before starting your travels again.”

This is a silly and hypothetical one. If you would be given a chance to travel with a popular person or a celebrity, who would it be and why?

“I want to put Ray Mears – because he’s an absolute Don – but I don’t recon he’d be boisterous enough for me. So instead I’m going to have to go with Bradley Cooper. I picked him because I recon travelling with Bradley would be a laugh a minute… and more importantly he’s be a great wingman!”

Meet the Nomads - Adrian Qais of Suitqais Diaries

Where’s your favorite place in this planet and why?

“So far in my little life the prize is going to have to go to Bermuda. I was living there for 3 months working in the aquarium and surveying coral reefs. It was hands down the most fun 3 months of my life. I had my own scooter, shared a room with an absolute hero and had a great circle of friends. When I wasn’t working I would either be exploring the island’s pink sand beaches, caving (which I nearly died doing), partying on friends boats or houses, skinny dipping or just laying back and living the island lifestyle.

I honestly can’t recommend Bermuda highly enough as a place to travel too. Even after all these years writing about it makes me a little sad… in a good way.”

What’s your best tip for newbie traveler?

“Buy a laptop and start a travel blog today! If you talk to any traveler blogger out there – most regret NOT starting their travel blog when they first walked out their front door all those years ago. It doesn’t have to be a tailor made site, you can use a pre-packaged WordPress theme – just start writing now! If you need any convincing this article should help.”

What’s the funniest and silliest thing you’ve ever done while travelling?

Meet the Nomads - Adrian Qais of Suitqais Diaries

“Again… there’s been more than I care to remember! The most recent was last Saturday where I took part in an ‘International Sumo’ competition in Northern Japan. We all had to wear mawashis (the sumo loin cloth)… and I looked like a total tool! More than that I had the biggest camel-toe this side of the world has ever seen!”

How do you keep yourself safe on your travels?

“My only advice is please, for the love of G, don’t get into cars that door handles don’t work or have blacked out rear windows. I learnt this lesson the hard way when I was kidnapped and robbed in Africa. Apart from that, you just have to be a little savvy and don’t be scared to be rude to people especially if you are feeling intimidated. However, if there is ever a point where you feel threatened – get the hell out of there as quickly as possible. The best way I’ve found to do this is to simply jump into a taxi! It’s better to say, ‘I wish I’d been braver and stood up to those guys’ than lying in a hospital in some foreign land.”

What do you think about yourself?

“OK… I’m not good at this but here goes.

I’m a child at heart, but as an adult I usually freak out about life for at least 4 hours every 28 days – but that’s usually because I’m suffering from a massive hangover. Which moves me on to my next point quite well. I love to party. If I could, and my liver would let me, I would party every night.

What else…

I’m driven but get sidetracked quite easily. I love adventures and challenges and won’t stop until I finish them to the best of my ability – even if it turns out to be an epic fail. Apart from that I think I am a nice, down to earth kind of guy who cares an awful lot about his friends and family. In my mind, friends and family are the most important things out there. In fact I’d say they are THE ONLY important things out there. I think, in this life, you can consider yourself very lucky if you make even a small number of REAL friends. And in that respect I count myself blessed.”

Meet the Nomads - Adrian Qais of Suitqais Diaries

“After backpacking, living, volunteering and working in over 50 countries I don’t mean to stop my adventures now. My website is made up of stories, experiences and adventures I’ve had from the road and personal advice I want to share with my readers. My intention is not to brag but to demonstrate that the travelling lifestyle is not a fantasy but a reality, with the hope that I can somehow encourage folk to go out there, do the same and become the person they always wanted to be.” – Adrian Qais of Suitqais Diaries

Editor’s Note: All pics are provided by Adrian.

Next: Jessica Dawdy of Ways of Wanderers Previously: Ronald Robbins of Active Planet Travels For more interviews with travel bloggers, check out the archives of Meet the Nomads.

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