By Guest Author Alexandra Kahn
Many people have a passion, something that fuels them. Maybe it keeps them up at night, or maybe it gives them a reason to wake up in the morning; however that passion affects a person, it is a part of them. My passion is travel and everywhere I go, I like to document the journey through pictures and words.
One activity I spend most of my time doing is rock climbing, and fortunately for me, rock climbing is something that can be done all over the world. Climbing locations have brought me close by to big cities like Paris, France and Madrid, Spain; to small mountain villages like Tulfes, Austria and Claro, Switzerland; to the beaches of Portugal and Thailand; and to the dry plains of South Africa. These climbing locations are in such close proximity to other points of interest on my bucket list that I researched and found affordable ways to also visit Nice, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Prague, Marrakesh, London, Milan, Zurich, Vienna, Cinque Terre, Torino and Bangkok.
For some time, I was stationed with my boyfriend in Europe and through resources such as Easyjet, Ryanair, Hostelworld.com and Airbnb.com, I found extremely affordable ways to jet all over Europe. While other climbers might rest for a day or two and relax on the sofa in front of a TV, our rest days were spent touring museums, trying out exotic culinary sensations, attending markets, and visiting parks and gardens. I feel blessed to have been able to find a climbing partner and life partner that shares my love of climbing and my desire to experience all that the world has to offer. Life is always exciting, never boring.
As a climber, I am constantly surprised by the amount of fellow climbers who travel to these remarkable countries in search of rock but fail to discover the culture, history and local people around them. For me, the sport of climbing has allowed me to meet new people of different languages who have welcomed me into their homes and proudly guided me around their homelands. I have been able to form lifelong friendships with people I have nothing in common with, except for my love of climbing, and I think this is remarkable. I cannot think of another sport that brings people from all over the world together to the same spot and provides a situation for them to live together at night and spend all day together. Men and women of different countries, religions, and age all bond over their common love of climbing and form a camaraderie that is unbeatable.
Climbing and traveling have formed a symbiotic relationship in my mind. The more places I travel to in order to climb, the more cultures I am able to explore, and the more friendships I am able to make. Each new place I go to gives me a greater appreciation for my country, my family and for the differences in the world that make this planet so diverse and amazing. I have become extremely tolerant, accepting and interested in learning about all types of people and the journey that has brought them to wherever they are in life. Traveling and climbing has fueled my love of writing and photography because I have a desire to share the world I have been able to experience. My bucket list is 17 pages, not many people can say that. While many people have a set goal in their career or financial standing, my goal is to see the world. I think with my savvy spending tactics, the connections I have made, and my desire and ability to find odds and ends jobs wherever I go, I will eventually accomplish that goal. I plan to climb and explore the other activities, cuisines, cultures and languages around the world, and I plan to document my entire journey. I figure I only get one shot in this world, so why not try to do it all and go out with a bang?
Climbingjourney wants to extend a myriad of thanks to the purely awesome and talented guest author Alexandra Kahn. Alex is a fellow climber and travel warrior full of inspiration and valuable insight to share with all of us!
About Alex: Hailing from Baltimore, but currently living in Colorado, I have learned that “home” is where your suitcase of essentials and your best friend is, and a job is when you are lucky enough to get paid to do what you were already doing. Daring to be different and forge my own path, I live for the moment and the next adventure. Want to see more of Alex’s work? Support a fellow climber and check out www.alexandrakahnmedia.com.