She traveled the world looking for great stories. That required her to explore and read a lot which wasn’t a problem, having in mind her great interest in archaeology and anthropology combined with her natural curiosity. In today’s story, we spoke to Anette Lillevang Kristiansen, journalist and world traveler from Denmark about her motives to travel and lessons learned along the way.
More of her stories you can read here.
I describe myself as…
An adventurous, very curious, comprehensive and a hardworking journalist with high ambitions. I love finding new places to discover, meeting new people and getting to know and understand different places around the world. I have a huge hunger when it comes to understanding the world and extending my knowledge. I am reading a lot and, of course, writing and that means a huge research every time I am about to visit a new place – but I also love the spontaneous journeys, where no one has a clue where are you going to end up and what will happen next – that’s a true adventure and it’s certainly stimulating the curious part of me.
I travel for…
Because I am a professional journalist and photographer, I am traveling a lot to find great stories, meet interesting people and get exciting experiences and angles for my articles. Some of my passions are archaeology and anthropology, so I am visiting places with history and spiritual influence. I have been studying Anthropology and Egyptology in Cairo, Egypt, so I am enjoying visiting places that I know from these subjects. I also travel because I need to feel the freedom and the adventure, test myself, reach my limits and get some new inspiration. I am feeling most happy when I am on the road, off the beaten track, trying to find special places with a special story – that’s the true spirit of journalism and traveling.
So far, I traveled to…
I have been traveling in 72 different countries and 10 territories on five continents since 1994. I know the exact number because I am a member of the Danish Travelers Guild, where we are counting our countries and territories, numbers of equator crossings, around the world journeys, northern- and southernmost points in the world and so on. I am also a part of the editor in chief group for the magazine of the guild. Every time I am visiting a new country I register it on the website. My next travel project will be Jordan and later on this year, Kenya and Tanzania.
My dream destination
I have several dream destinations, but for me some of the best places for studying archaeology and history are Central America, Mexico and the countries in the Ancient Inca Empire, meaning Peru, Chile, Bolivia, Ecuador – because of the rich history and culture and the Andes – that’s the true spirit of adventure. You never know exactly what will happen when you enter Latin America and that’s something I find really attractive. I have also been around different places in Africa and for a while I was living and working as a safari guide in Kruger National park in South Africa – it’s something completely different from Latin America, but I love Africa because of the magnificent nature, the wildlife and huge areas without any human influence – that’s really mind blowing and breathtaking. Another specific place that is really something special for me is the Inca ruin Machu Picchu in Peru – visiting that place was like coming home.
My most memorable travel experience
I have lots of memorable travel experiences, but I guess the most spectacular of them would be my six-day trekking in Fish River Canyon in Namibia back in 2005, where several crazy things happened. Our group (without a guide) split up and I walked majority of the 90 kilometers on my own – sometimes without water in 35 degrees Celsius – it was truly a rough experience that demanded all my effort and power, but it was a very memorable time, something I will never forget. It was worth the entire struggle. And if I got the chance, I would do it again any time. Another great travel experience was my visit to Easter Island in 1997, because one of my favorite authors and explorers is Norwegian Thor Heyerdahl, who did the Kontiki expedition from Peru to the Raroia an atoll of the Tuamotus back in 1947.
People travel for various reasons to all parts of the world seeking adventure, inspiration and new ideas. We may differ in our initial motivation for doing so, but we are standing together as travelers and explorers. With this series of interviews we want to present you travelers from around the world with stories to tell.
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