Stephen Gollan
Stephen Gollan

Want to know how to travel in style, just like the pros? We check in with frequent fliers to find out how often they fly, their favorite destinations and what they never leave home without.

Name: Stephen Gollan

Occupation: Travel Writer/Photographer and Lifeguard

Hometown: Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Residence: Camadian


Facebook: Uncharted Backpacker

Instagram: unchartedbackpacker

YouTube: Stephen Gollan

Short bio: My name is Stephen Gollan. I am a professional travel writer/photographer and freelance journalist. I am the owner of and now have been to over 90 countries. My website focuses on travel to destinations often thought of as impossible to travel to like Yemen, Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Papua New Guinea. You can find many of my stories on Huffington Post and Business Insider, as well as view my photography on National Geographic.

How often do you fly? At least a few times a month.

How many countries have you been to? 94

How many continents have you been to? All but Antarctica.

Earliest travel memory: Traveling the Canadian Arctic when I was six-years old.

Favorite American city: Seattle.

Favorite international city: Sana’a, Yemen.  

Friendliest people in the world: Yemen.

Country with the meanest immigration officers: Djibouti.

Favorite World Heritage Site: Borobudur, Java, Indonesia.

Favorite airline: Air Canada.

Aisle or window: Window.

Favorite U.S. airport: LA.

Favorite international airport: Singapore.

Favorite island: Borneo.

Favorite beach: Long Beach—Koh Phi Phi Thailand.

Favorite National Park: Banff National Park.

Favorite fancy restaurant: Peking duck restaurants in Beijing.

Favorite hole-in-the-wall: All street food in Thailand.  

Favorite food: Laksa in Borneo.

Least favorite food: Mongolian food.

Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Local beer.

Favorite travel movie(s): 7 Years in Tibet.

Favorite travel show(s): Parts Unknown Anthony Bourdain.

Favorite travel book(s): Lonely Planet.

Right now I am reading: “The World” – Lonely Planet

Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Expert Vagabond, Lonely Planet, Bradt.

Favorite travel website(s)—besides, of course! Lonely Planet, Expert Vagabond.

5 things you bring on a plane: Music, camera, travel guide, chewing gum, drone. 

What do you like least about travel? Airports.

What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Cuban cigars.

Favorite travel app(s):

Most embarrassing travel moment: Being put in prison in Yemen under suspicion of being a spy.

Worst travel moment: Being put in prison in Yemen under suspicion of being a spy.

What’s your dream destination? Antarctica.

Favorite travel charity:

Best travel tip: Get lost and don’t listen to others’s negativity!


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