mark passion

The Savvy Traveler :: Marc

[trip style = active & adventure + beach + wine tasting]

Panama hat, check. Linen suit, check. Hairy and extraordinary travel tales, check. Marc, aka Marc Passion, calls himself an ordinary guy seeking extraordinary travel experiences, but I think you have to be more than ordinary to get into some of the off-beat and outta sight situations he's captured. With a filming partner, Marc---always wearing the Panama hat and linen suit---records his travel adventures on video and uploads them to his website, Marc Passion Travel. I met the Aussie adventurer in Vancouver last year and was wowed by his work-play balancing act and h-i-l-a-r-i-o-u-s travel stories from parts of the world other travelers wouldn't dare go. With this, meet May's Savvy Traveler!

1/ Your top three trip styles and why?
This is a hard one because my lifestyle allows me to pick any trip style at any time. I work in a gold mine in Tanzania and my roster is six weeks on, four weeks off, so I can pick short bursts here and there, or focus on longer and genuine experiences. As I get older, I prefer the luxurious approach.

[trip style = active & adventure] Lately I've been into adventure/sporting trips, snowboarding in Beaver Creek, Colorado. I'm also going to hit-up the indoor ski facility, Ski Dubai, for a day on my way back to Tanzania.

[trip style = beach] A beach holiday is always good. I'm actually writing this on my brand new iPad, overlooking the sun-drenched coastline with a nice cold Asahi beer from the pool bar at the Marriott Surfers Paradise Resort and Spa on the Gold Coast.

[trip style = wine tasting] Last week I visited the Hunter Valley wine region. It produces 2% of Australia's wine. It's luxury to the max at Spicers Vineyard Estate, a beautiful accommodation that's tucked into the vineyard's rolling hills.

2/ What's the stickiest situation you've been in while filming a travel video?
I've been in a few funny situations in the past whilst filming. But then again, I'd say funny simply because I couldn't believe what was happening in front of my eyes. I was with a friend in Vancouver during the Stanley Cup finals when the Canucks lost! Some people rioted in the streets, and on our way home we got caught in the tear gas.... not enjoyable.... but certainly a situation to look back on and laugh. Another was in Vietnam trying snake blood: my reactions in this video say it all. The stickiest situation was in Cambodia with the army. We found a place to buy some large guns to shoot in the middle of the bush, an hour from Phnom Penh. It was only after the day finished, we realized how easily we could have been robbed or kidnapped.

3/ The destination that has/will make you a return visitor?
Vietnam! Absolutely. I spent a month there traveling from top to bottom, and stayed away from most tourists. The people, scenery, food and culture are simply amazing and I'm planning another trip soon---hopefully before tourists have completely taken over.

4/ Last trip, next trip and what destination{s} are on your radar?
I'm currently home for the first time in seven months, but I'm not going to count this as a trip. My last trip was to Denver and Boulder for just over three weeks. I visited Strawberry Springs in Steamboat for a thermo pool session, Colorado Springs for an mouth-watering breakfast burrito and hiked up the Flatirons in Boulder. Colorado is definitely the place to be for fresh air and a cold beer from microbreweries aplenty. It has a ton to offer and I plan to keep on exploring the destination in June when I return to North America, and likely add on a trip to the sand dunes in southern Colorado as well as venture into Yellowstone in Wyoming or Moab, Utah.

5/ You're from Oz, what are your top three suggestions for travelers seeking a local experience in Australia?
I was born and bred in Sydney, so anything to do with the water makes me feel right at home, and that does NOT mean hitting up Bondi Beach! Instead, try: Maroubra Beach, quieter and just as nice, or head up the coast to Lennox Head for locals surfing spots. Hanging out on Sydney Harbour is another favorite pastime. I've been lucky enough to have a cousin who operates Morpheus Cruises, and I can't remember how many times I've floated past the Opera House or the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Lastly, let's talk beer and meat! A true Aussie experience wouldn't be complete without a massive steak on the barbecue and an ice-cold beer in hand. I've only been back a week and I've already cooked up three barbecue dinners with more to come... Cheers!

More Savvy Travelers
Marissa, 30 By 30
Jason, Living To Travel
Marissa, Vacation Time Escapist

{If you know anyone who should be featured in our once-monthly The Savvy Traveler series, drop us a line!}

[photo c/o marc]