‘Bus Around the World’ Bloggers Shows Us What Adventure Travel is All About
Karol “Charlie” Lewandowski and Aleksandra “Alex” Ślusarczyk are a couple of travelers from Poland, who wander the world in their old van, pitching tents in stunning locations, photographing their journeys and telling the world about their adventures.
In the 6 years they’ve been on the road, they have visited more than 50 countries on 5 continents and they don’t seem to be slowing down. They’ve gained quite a following of late, simply because they show the world that traveling doesn’t need to be expensive and that almost anyone can do it! Also, their car is nearly as famous as they are! They’re traveling in an old VW T3 van from 1989 bought in Poland for $600. There, they have their electric shower, bed, kitchen, a 220V power converter and many other things — all built by their own two hands!
Read on and find out what the Charlie and Alex had to say about their wonderful adventures to BookSinglesHolidays.
BookSinglesHolidays: What you guys are doing is not only inspiring a lot of people in your native Poland, and also around the work, but it is also changing the way people view traveling. There are more and more people who realize that you can travel the world without being rich. What advice would you have for those who still haven’t figured that out?
Karol and Aleksandra: Do not think too much, do not listen to friends who tell you that this is impossible or that you are crazy. Just begin to travel and fulfill your dreams.
BSH: The vast majority of people live for those 20 days of vacation a year. What are your thoughts on the vacation culture vs the travel culture? Tourist vs traveler?
K&A: People often imagine that we are sitting in 5-star hotels with swimming pools, or lay on the beach and enjoy our holiday. Unfortunately, months of cheap traveling do not look like this. Very often we sleep on the beautiful beaches, but sometimes we have to sleep in the parking lot next to the supermarket. Or the car breaks down in the middle of the night when it rains, or someone steals you’re your things. But these things happens very rarely and we still love this lifestyle.
About tourist versus traveler, we do not like those divisions. In our opinion, the fact that someone has a backpack instead of a suitcase does not make him a traveler, and vice versa. We do not know whether we are travelers or tourists. We’re just people who do what they love!
BSH: Was there ever a time when you felt like you were ready to give up and go home? And was there ever a time when you said to yourself: we’re doing this for the rest of our lives?
K&A: During the first trip, there were a few times we thought about going back home: in Barcelona when someone robbed us, or in Switzerland when we had to repair the gearbox and in Gibraltar where we were arrested because of the appearance of our bus. But all these adventures ended well, and we now know that every problem can be solved and we never think about giving up.
We don’t know if we will be doing this for the rest of our lives — for now we are happy and we don’t plan to change it.
BSH: If there was one thing you could change about the way you travel, what would it be? Change your beloved bus? Bring more people with you?
K&A: We are already bringing a lot of people with us — we almost never travel alone, sometimes even other cars join us — in the Sahara we drove 15 people. But if we could change something, it would be fuel prices in many countries around the world to make our traveling even cheaper. Or at least change the engine in the bus, to use less fuel.
BSH: By looking at your pictures, one might guess that it’s all fun and games on the road. But we’re sure you must have had some struggles. Can you please share with us one of the toughest moments on the road?
K&A: There were a few bad experiences but always ended well. In Barcelona, someone stole all our luggage. In Rome, someone tried to steal the van. In Gibraltar, we were arrested because of the appearance of our car. The police were sure that we were drug dealers because the van is very colorful. In Mexico, somebody wanted to kidnap us but we were rescued by a Mexican friend. In the US, we had problems with a Vietnamese gang. In Norway, the local mafia helped us repair the engine in our van. In Australia we lost a wheel while driving — we got stuck in the desert in a place with no mobile range, and with small supplies of water. We survived the attack of locusts, a dust storm, floods, jellyfish burns and had many other adventures.
BSH: What about your most beloved memory from your years of traveling?
K&A: We will always remember a visit to an orphanage for kangaroos in Australia. We visited people who had 15 kangaroos in their home! They even slept with them in bed.
In the city of Coober Pedy there were many underground houses because it was too hot to live on the ground. This is where the Mad Max movie was filmed.
We also met a Polish man who lived like Robinson Crusoe in a wooden cottage on the beach built by him.
In Las Vegas, playing roulette, we won a lot of money for our trip.
One of our favorite places remains Sahara — that’s where we got engaged, in the middle of the desert, sleeping under the stars.
Christmas holidays spent on the beautiful beaches in Australia.
We fell in love in the hot springs in Iceland — it is a wonderful thing when the weather is 0 degrees Celsius and the hot springs are 40 degrees.
Meeting whales during a cruise on New Zealand.
Amazing sunrises and sunsets in the deserts of Australia, America and Africa. Stars in Romania, so bright, it was hard to believe they were real.
We were impressed with Chernobyl in Ukraine — a ghost town, abandoned due to failure of a nuclear power plant.
BSH: You visited over 50 countries on 5 continents, what are some destinations that you will add to that list in the near future?
K&A: We would love to visit South America, maybe next year because we are planning a big trip with our bus through the three Americas — from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego.
BSH: You’ve written two books about your experiences: “Bus Around the World. The first expedition” and “Bus Around the World. America for $8”. Is a new book in the works? And if so, can you tell us a bit about it?
K&A: Yes, we are currently working on a book “Bus Around the World. Australia for $8.” It will be a book about our adventures in Australia, where we traveled more than 25,000 kilometers, and how to travel cheaply there. Australia with their free campsites, beautiful nature, free electric grills and cheap kangaroo meat is a paradise for people who want to travel cheaply. Our books are available for now only in Polish, but we hope that some English-language publishing house would be interested in our books and someday they will also be available also in English!
BSH: What has traveling the world taught you?
K&A: Travelling has taught us that you do not need big money to be happy. We met a lot of people in Ukraine, Romania and Albania, who were very poor, but who were much happier than the rich people we met, for example in California.
BSH: And now, on a lighter note: Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? And if you do, can you share with our readers your favorite Valentine’s Day destination?
K&A: Yes, we celebrate Valentine’s Day. We recently stayed in Bruges — a small medieval town in Belgium and we believe that this is one of the most beautiful places in Europe for couples. Romantic streets, old buildings, picturesque canals, and amazing atmosphere.
BSH: Thank you so much for taking the time to do this! All the best to you guys and may your journeys bring nothing but pleasure and fulfillment!
Inspired by Charlie and Alex, but don’t have anyone to tag along with you on an adventure? Then how about you check out our hundreds of singles holidays offers, right here on BookSinglesHolidays.com! Who knows, love could be just around the corner?!
Originally published at www.booksinglesholidays.com.