Well, I’ve travelled a fair bit in my life, both for personal and business reasons.
When I was a child, I was fortunate to have several family holidays to Malaysian Borneo to visit family that I have there, as well as a trip to Thailand in 2001. In those days (1989 – 2001), the travel industry and the locations themselves were not as developed as they are now. I recall a trip back to Kota Kinabalu in 2013 and it had changed dramatically to what I remember. I visited a place called Poring Hot Springs, which was ‘off the beaten track’ when we were kids, with us being the only people swimming in the pleasant waterfalls and hot baths. This time, it couldn’t be more different – it’s now a major tourist attraction, with coach loads of tourists all splashing about, eating and drinking in the hot baths. I remember feeling sad that the special place I remember as a child has lost its magic charm. Another example, were the islands we visited as children which were a short boat ride from Tanjung Aru beach, we would take a picnic with us, spend the morning swimming in the crystal clear blue waters and playing on the white sandy beaches. Again, we were the only ones there. Yet, in 2013, it was not like that at all.
Although I was young, I’m sure it was these early family trips which opened my mind to travelling. Perhaps it was these experiences that have driven me to continue to seek out special, unique and unspoilt places in the world.