I had the pleasure to meet someone whose trips around the world are a pure inspiration to me and to all who love new adventures. I had the opportunity to take an interview with Vania Oushatova, co-founder of HR Recruitment Agency BrightPoint.
Vania has visited 6 continents and 45 countries! Let the journey with Vania begins now.
Vanya shares with a smile how she applied for a visa to the Netherlands in 2006 and took her bachelor degree in the Netherlands. This is a big challenge as Bulgaria is not yet in the European Union. After her bachelor, she decided to do her master in Barcelona. Then, she found the perfect internship for her in Barcelona. Taking her education abroad, she traveled a lot in both Netherlands and Spain and she became an independent young lady.
Vania has a sister and her sister has participated in Youth Exchange in Sydney, Australia. This, of course, is a great opportunity for the whole family to travel to Australia and enjoy the Australian beauties in a month! Australia – a dream destination for many people! Vania continues with the temptations and shares her travel to Fiji and New Zealand! New Zealand is on my bucket list and I am so excited listening Vania’s story about my dream!
After graduating, Vania returns back to Bulgaria and starts a job where the trips don’t stop. She lived 6 months in Budapest (Hungary), 3 months in Milan (Italy), 6 months in Kiev (Ukraine), 2 months in the United States. She travels to North Carolina, South Carolina, Boston, Washington, New York. Vania knows the USA from her past trips to New York, California, Las Vegas.
I: How it is to be on a business trip?
Vanya: I don’t have time for tours and if I don’t live in a place for a while, I have only the weekends to explore the cities where I am staying.
I: Vania, which destination is closest to your heart?
Vanya: Barcelona! I love it because of the incredible architecture, the beautiful buildings, the dynamic life. I love the food and the drinks.
Me: What is your favorite food?
Vanya: I love the Italian food and I eat pasta regularly.
Vania shares “Fifty percent of the trip is the immersion.” She loves to immerse into the energy of the cities and the people, usually trying new food, drinks, new places.
Next destination is the Latin atmosphere of Cuba where Vanya is fascinated how people have fun. The salsa clubs are really cool and the music starts at 9 am!
I: Which are the most exotic destinations you have ever been?
Together with Vanya we are traveling to South Asia, the day-long party in Thailand, the poor towns in Cambodia, the crazy driving in Vietnam; Malaysia.
Me: Where did you drive around the world?
Vanya: In the United States and Europe.
I: How do you organize your trips usually?
Vany says she is using the services of G Adventures, a Canadian agency. This type of traveling is charming because you meet people from around the world and become friends with them. Exchange ideas, experiences, and inspiration. Vania is still in touch with some of her friends from her trips. Before some weeks she had guests from Australia. She took them to Rila Monastery and showed Sofia city. Australia is one of the places where she wants to come back.
Me: Okay, how many more destinations are on your list?
Vanya: China, Safari in Tanzania, Zanzibar, Cambodia; Peru – Bolivia – Chile; Mexico – Belize – Gwamatella – Costa Rica – Panama. Cuba, Dominican Republic… The Kukulcan Pyramid in Chichen Itza, one of the wonders of the world.
We are talking about some of the most memorable moments. Vania has been staying with the Mayan foster family. They are very warm and good people. They speak their own dialect but they have been able to understand Spanish. They live in poverty and happiness. She has seen a lot of poverty and misery in Cambodia and Tanzania. In Tanzania during a safari, their camp was attacked by a wild elephant and the leaders have lit torches to chase it. In Tanzania, the elephants are quite dangerous, not like in Thailand – friendly. She watched how a lion attacked a zebra. She is amazed by the number of the street dogs in Central America; the beautiful greenery in Costa Rica. Belize is the most sparsely populated country in Central America. The population is the descendants of African slaves, Mayans, European settlers and mixed marriages.
I: Is there any food that you have tried and cannot bear?
Vanya: I have a healthy stomach and I didn’t have any bad experience.
She says she was disappointed with the Chinese food on the streets but the Chinese tea is really good, in Mexico – the local food is strongly recommended. From Gwamatella and Costa Rica, she recommends the coffee.
I: What are your hobbies besides this passion to travel?
Vanya: I regularly practice yoga and fitness, 2 or 3 times a week. I love walking and reading books.
BrightPoint has a major focus now. I’m glad we’re two partners, and when I’m traveling I’m relaxed.
I: What are your travel plans for 2018?
Vania: During the spring I am going to Japan for about 2 weeks. I will travel around Europe. At the end of the year, I will go on a different continent than Europe again but I didn’t decide yet where.
I: Which is your favorite place in Bulgaria?
Vania: Last summer I was in a really cool place nearby Sofia – Cob Camp. The food is so delicious, all guests have dinner together on a big table and you can meet nice people. Just the perfect place for relaxing weekend.
I: I think I didn’t know another person who has been traveling more than you! Wow!
Vania: My sister has to do some more destinations to reach my list. But she tells me she is younger than me and one day she will have a bigger list of destinations.
Let’s travel and be in a competition with ourselves only!