Chris Osburn, a UK based travel blogger talks to Jumia Travel Nigeria

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Jumia Travel Nigeria interviewed Chris Osburn, an American travel blogger. We asked about his travels and experience in Nigeria.

Hi Chris, thrilled to have this interview with you! Let us start with a formal introduction. Who is Chris Osburn?

Good question. When I figure that out, I’ll get back to you. But seriously … I’m an American living in London and working as a writer. I write mostly about food, drink and travel, usually for my own blog and other digital outlets but sometimes I get in print.

You were shortlisted for the best travel category by the UK Blog Awards. How many countries have you visited and can you mention some countries on your travel bucket list you are yet to explore?

Honestly, I don’t know how many countries I’ve been too. Dozens? Checking items off a to-do list isn’t why I travel. But there are, of course, countries I’m most keen to visit that I haven’t yet made it to, such as (in no particular order) Norway, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Brazil, Peru, Vietnam, Jordan …

Bar Beach Lagos

How and when did you develop an interest for traveling?

From a very early age, I’ve loved exploring. I grew up in a rural and largely forested area. I spent a lot of time outside, wandering around the woods. I would draw maps of the woods near my house. I got a kick seeing how connected different places are. I still do.

What thrills you the most about traveling?

There’s so much! I love good food. Seeing natural beauty or wild animals in their natural habitat is always a wonderfully memorable experience. Meeting people and realising our similarities while celebrating our differences is a big deal for me. Of course, getting away with my girlfriend is always a treat, as is any chance to catch up with family and close friends. Mostly though, I think I enjoy travel best when it’s mix of some of the above along with opportunities for me to have some introspective time on my own.

Would you describe yourself as an Eco tourist or a luxury traveller?

Do these terms have to be mutually exclusive? I’ve stayed at luxury properties that were committed to sustainability and making sure guest had the best time ever. Those are the best.

Share your most memorable funny travel moments.

The time I thought I was in the men’s changing room of a swimming pool in remote Iceland but actually in the women’s was, in retrospect, pretty hilarious. The (very large) lifeguard on-duty who came in to correct me was yelling at me (in Icelandic). Apparently he didn’t think I’d entered the wrong room by mistake.

This is Lagos art Bogobiri

How would you describe your trip to Nigeria in three words?

Well, I’ve only seen Lagos. But to describe it in three words, I might say LOTS OF PEOPLE.

What was the primary reason to visit Nigeria?

I was there primarily to visit an old friend from America who was in Nigeria for work. We turned into an opportunity to sightsee around Lagos.

What was your perception about Nigeria before your trip?

I was concerned about my safety before travelling to Lagos. Like most places if you stay aware of your surroundings and don’t take needless risk, you shouldn’t have to worry too much.

If you get a chance to visit Nigeria again, what destinations would you like to visit?

I didn’t see as much of Lagos as I would have liked. I’d like to visit other areas of the country when some of the major festivals are on, such as Sharo/Shadi, the Dubar Festival and the Arugungu Fishing Festival.
What are the destinations in Nigeria you would gladly recommend to an international friend?

I’ve only been to Lagos, but I would recommend it.

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Who is your best travel buddy or do you prefer to travel solo?

I really love travelling on my own, but always prefer going anywhere with my girlfriend.

While visiting a new destination what two things do love to explore first?

Where to eat is usually my first consideration. After that what interests me usually has to do with what makes the destination special. Am I at the beach? In the mountains? In a city famous for art or museums?

What is your travel mantra?

I’m not sure I have one but I love the phrase “follow your bliss” that’s attributed to Joseph Campbell.

How do you afford to travel? Are you a rich kid?

I’m far from rich. I work as a travel writer. The pay isn’t great but the perks are amazing.

jazzhole lagos

Any tip for traveller on a slim a budget?

Plan as far ahead as you can and do as much research before going as possible. Consider packing some meals from home (sandwiches, canned foods etc). Take public transportation.

What are the top 5 things on your travel checklist?

Phone, camera, powerbank, comfortable shoes, extra socks.

Do you have any safety tips for travellers?

One tip is to travel with photocopies of your passport, credit cards, and other important documents and forms of ID and to keep the copies separate from the originals.

Most practical piece of advice for those planning to travel?

Give yourself plenty of time.

 

Image Source:  Images are published with approval from Chris Osburn.

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