Country: The Netherlands
Occupation: Visual Designer
Hello Ying! Thank you for giving us your time today.
Could you get us started by giving our readers a quick introduction about yourself?
Hello I,m Ying! I’m from the Netherlands, my origin is Chinese. I’m a Visual Designer and an Instagram influencer where I mostly focus on sharing my travel photo’s. Currently considering about starting my own travel blog. I love to travel, do sports and eat a lot!
I was never a backpacker type until two years ago when I went to Colombia with my boyfriend. Before I was a real tourist and now I can finally understand the difference between “going on a holiday” and “travelling”.
I’m really happy to have been able to rediscover travelling as a backpacker!
Where are you in the world currently?
I’m in Amsterdam – The Netherlands right now.
Where do you plan to get to this year?
This is going to be my best travel year (yet)!
But in the meanwhile I often go to Germany to visit family and friends because it’s so nearby The Netherlands.
What has been your all time favorite place?
That is a very difficult question because every place is so unique. I really fell in love with Shanghai. The nightlife, the food and the architecture. It is absolutely an incredible place!
However I pick Colombia because it’s the first country that I’ve explored as a backpacker and the experience has truly changed my life and now has me longing for more…!
Could you share us your all time favorite photo you have taken travelling?
Tian Tan Buddha aka Big Buddha (34 meters tall) in Hong Kong.
This one of my favorite photo’s because this reminds me of my family and –I don’t mean to brag- but I think the perspective of this photo is pretty creative!
What is your top backpacking tip?
First look for a backpack that suits your body and needs. My favorite backpack brand is lowe alpine! Any outdoor store will give you advice on that and you can try on backpacks with weights in them. As for clothing; dress in layers!
Don’t plan out everything! Just make a general plan, if you like 1 place you can always stay longer and leave whenever you want. That’s the beauty of traveling. But do plan out domestic flights though! Bus rides can be long however it’s a great way to really see the country!
My boyfriend always says: Treat your Lonely Planet as your bible!
Which thing should every backpacker carry with them? – Saying mobile phones isn’t allowed, be creative 😉
A lot wet tissues and of course your Lonely Planet guide.
Even though everyone uses their smart phones to note things these days an old fashioned notebook and pen will always come in handy! Lastly a portable mobile charger for your smartphone/GoPro!
Do you have any words of advice or inspiration for anyone undecided about travelling?
Don’t judge. You’ll miss out on so many great experiences.
Before I went to travel in Colombia I’ve never stayed in a hostel before and never wanted to. Why? Because in way I felt like I was too good to stay in a hostel and thought that every hostel was dirty. I even thought that backpacking was a poor and uninteresting way to travel. I was so wrong! It has changed my view on life and my way of traveling. It’s truly something that cannot be explained to someone who hasn’t done it before and that is why you have to try it yourself! Most of my friends and family are unfortunately still skeptical about backpacking because they think it’s mostly very dangerous. That of course is nonsense.
There are pickpocketers and other ill-minded people everywhere in the world, you just need common sense and respect the people of the country that you visit. In return, see the most beautiful views, eat delicious food and meet amazing new people!
Just do it!
What has been your favorite food whilst away?
I really enjoyed the fresh fruit in Colombia and the dishes that they serve with rice and avocado!
What has been your favorite activity whilst away?
I went paragliding for the first time in Barichara, Colombia.
The view was breathtaking! Throwing up twice afterwards was worth it!
Hiking is of course the best way to see and enjoy all the beautiful views.
What quote do you try to live by?
“I no longer have patience for certain things, not because I’ve become arrogant, but simply because I reached a point in my life where I do not want to waste more time with what displeases me or hurts me. I have no patience for cynicism, excessive criticism and demands of any nature. I lost the will to please those who do not like me, to love those who do not love me and to smile at those who do not want to smile at me. I no longer spend a single minute on those who lie or want to manipulate. I decided not to coexist anymore with pretense, hypocrisy, dishonesty and cheap praise. I do not tolerate selective erudition nor academic arrogance. I do not adjust either to popular gossiping. I hate conflict and comparisons. I believe in a world of opposites and that’s why I avoid people with rigid and inflexible personalities. In friendship I dislike the lack of loyalty and betrayal. I do not get along with those who do not know how to give a compliment or a word of encouragement.”
― José Micard Teixeira
Thank you for your time Ying! A great interview and some truly amazing photos.
Please do check out more of Ying on instagram, her feed is always remarkably colorful and creative. You will like it.