All posts by Vago Damitio

Vago Damitio  (@vagodamitio) is the Editor-in-Chief for Vagobond. He jumped ship from a sinking dotcom in 2000 and decided to reclaim his most valuable commodity, time. He bought a VW bus for $100, moved into it and set out on a journey to show the world that it was possible to live life on your own terms. That journey took him from waking up under icy blankets in  the Pacific Northwest to waking up under palm tress in Southeast Asia. Three years later, his first book, Rough Living: Tips and Tales of a Vagabond was published. After diving into the Anthropology of Tourism and Electronic Anthropology at the University of Hawaii (with undeclared minors in film and surf) he hit the road again in 2008. Since that time,he's lived primarily in Morocco and Turkey, married a Moroccan girl he couchsurfed with, and become a proud father. He's been to more than 40 countries, founded a successful online travel magazine (this one!), and still doesn't have a boss. Life is good. You can also find him on Google+ and at Facebook
hitch across canada

World Travel for Almost Nothing #3

One thing that screws everything up  is being in too much of a hurry. We all think time is money but in fact, it’s the opposite, money is time usually but time is time and you have a set amount of it to do with what you please.

You can trade it for money, give it away for free, or waste it being a pissed off grumpy asshole but you can’t actually buy time, you can only sell it.

Paris sculpture
Time is not money though this Paris sculpture certainly is both.

So the lesson from that leads to my third tip for traveling the world for almost nothing.

World Travel for Almost Nothing Tip #3:

 

Chill out man. Just take it easy. The slower you move the less money it takes. Think about it, if you want to get a ticket to wherever you want to go today and then come back in three days, you have to pay a premium. However, if you slow it down and make it for a departure in a month and staying indefinitely…it’s cheaper. Now how about if you walk there….take a year to get there.

pot plants in the basement
Sometimes when you slow down enough people will even show you what they have in their basements…

As a guy who has walked around the perimeter of Oahu, Hawaii and who hitched across Canada with $4, I can tell you that being in a hurry means you have to pay. If you are willing to take your time, you won’t. I’m currently on a slow motion trip around the world. It’s happening, but not in 80 days.

hitch across canada
I was hoping this hot air baloon would give me a ride across Canada’s plains, but no luck that time.
Sophia, Bulgaria

Top Five Places to Visit on a Trip to Bulgaria

Sophia, BulgariaNestled in the heart of the Balkan Peninsula, Bulgaria offers a breath-taking country that has been inhabited by some of the world’s greatest cultures. The birthplace of Spartacus and Orpheus and home to the ferocious ancient Thracians, Bulgaria offers a wonderful history in a beautiful setting that is just waiting to be explored.

Sophia

Sprawling, dynamic and unique, Bulgaria’s capital city features a unique blend of stark Communist-style architecture and traditional European designs. With a thriving modern culture that celebrates both the past and the future, Sophia is one of the most exciting urban environments in the country. Established over 2,500 years ago, Sophia is home to several museums, over 250 historical points of interest and some of the Bulgaria’s oldest orthodox churches and cathedrals.

Bulgarka Nature Park

Beautifully diverse Bulgarka Nature Park offers some of the most stunning landscapes in the country. Located in the center of Bulgaria and easily accessible from any of the major cities, the Nature Park offers lovely views, interesting cultural sites and plenty of open space to explore and enjoy. The Etar Architectural-Ethnographic Complex, Sokolski Monastary, and Shipka Memorial are located within park limits and offer insight into the fascinating history of Bulgaria. Home to a vast assortment of wild animals and with more than 30 maintained trails sprawling across varied terrain, the park is an ideal place for hiking, horseback riding, hunting, fishing, bird watching and other outdoor activities.

Belogradchik Fortress

One of the most well-preserved structures in Bulgaria, the Belogradchik Fortress dates back to Roman occupation. Positioned for surveillance instead of defence, this fortress served as one of the most important structures in the country after its expansion in the 14th century. The fortress played a significant role in the country’s development and offers striking views of the Bulgarian countryside.

Kazanlak

Nicknamed “The Town of the Roses and the Thracian Kings”, Kazanlak is an inviting city that is as fascinating as it is beautiful. With a history of settlements dating back to the Neolithic era, Kazanlak is home to the ancient Threcian Kosmatka Tomb, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city itself was established in the early 1400s and has become one of the world’s largest producers of rose oil; the vibrant colours and lovely fragrance of roses makes Kazanlak the perfect place for a leisurely stroll, and the Museum of Roses offers guests a fresh perspective on these attractive plants. Travellers can also visit cultural treasures such as the Koulata Ethnographic Complex, the Buzovgrad megalith, Buzludsha National Park and the Iskra Town History Museum.

Plovdiv

As the second largest city in the country and one of the oldest cities in Europe, Plovdiv is a thriving modern environment that proudly embraces its roots. The heart of the city is full of preserved architecture from the 19th century, complete with descriptive signs that resemble the heritage plaques of the UK. Plovdiv’s Central Garden features meticulously kept grounds, lovely trees and the Simfonia show of synchronized fountains and lights, making it a perfect place to relax and enjoy the city. Plovdiv is also the site of the Plovdiv Roman Amphitheatre, Bulgaria’s largest building from the Roman Era. Now fully restored and capable of seating 7,000, this glorious amphitheatre spent centuries hidden under 15 metres of mud!

camping in Hawaii

World Travel for Almost Nothing #2

The biggest rip off of modern times wasn’t the mere stealing of billions by Bernie Madoff, it was convincing most of the people on the planet that they need anything the modern world provides.

In fact, you were born with everything you need and whether you believe it or not you will keep getting everything you need until the day you die. Included in that isn’t shampoo, peanut butter, a new car, a great job, breast implants, or a college degree. I fell for it too…but the truth is all you need is the desire to move to the next second in this life and you already have it or else you’d already be dead.

sitting on the beach in Kalalau
The cost for this moment was only paid in muscle.

World Travel Tip #2

Modern nation states are built on a simple lie. That lie tells you that unless you can pay for new goods and services your life won’t be worth anything. It’s complete and total crap.

A look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs shows what you actually need. Food, sleep, air, defecation, and a sense of who you are. That’s it. The rest is luxury and as such is not necessary. In fact, it often gets in the way.

camping in Hawaii
Sometimes a beer is necessary. Usually it\’s not. It\’s always good though.

Nobody is charging you to breathe. Water can be found for free just about everywhere on the planet (though it may take a little umm…digestive adjustment), if there isn’t a free toilet, you can probably defecate on the ground, and if you don’t know who you are, isn’t it time you found out? You don’t need a therapist to tell you, you just need to take the time to ask yourself and listen for an answer. In addition companionship, love, self esteem, and even security can be found for little to nothing.

hiking aroudn Oahu, Hawaii
These strangers became friends as I hiked around the Island of Oahu. A simple hello led to sandwiches and ice cold water! Mmmm!

Step outside and start a conversation with a stranger and I can promise you that if you are looking for food or shelter, you will find them, maybe not with the first person you talk with but certainly with someone. Contrary to popular belief, people are GOOD and they want to help each other. Unless you are a real ass, you’ll find people take joy in being a part of your life and that includes food and shelter.

Tomorrow: Adjusting your pace