“Nigeria Isn’t Ready For Tourism”- Amarachi

Amarachi of travel with a pen

My quest on becoming an outstanding travel blogger forced me into doing a lot of terrific things, chief of which was consuming contents (esp. blog posts) from fellow bloggers in the same niche home and abroad. While I would later let go of some for lack of depth and quality, I stuck with a few for the consistent accumulation of same and that’s exactly where Amarachi falls.

Aside her amazing personality which permeates via my computer or phone’s screen whenever I follow her chronicles, her unique method of narrating her adventures too is another trait of hers which won me over.

Being a huge fan, I reached out to Amarachi, inquiring if  she could share with me and my audience a few things I’ve always wanted to know about her, her blog and lifestyle. To my amazement, she wasn’t just prompt with her response, she also took her time in doing justice to even questions I thought she’d stylishly dodge.

Enjoy!

1. What prompted you into travel blogging?

Travel blogging started as a medium to document my travels for friends and family. I wanted them to be able to follow my adventures somehow. Slowly, the blog began to grow and I saw how I could contribute to shaping the mindset of the average Nigerian and hopefully inspire them to travel and explore differently.

2. You’ve done almost all continents here on earth, how on earth did you
find the time and money to do this?

 Amarachi of travel with a pen

I’ve hardly scratched the surface of the earth but I hope to visit all someday. As for money: I have a day job and I am able to save up over time for trips I need to take. I also cut down costs here and there and take multiple destination trips. As for time, we all make out time for what’s important to us. I have a fixed set of vacation days a year and I try to take them around public holidays. This gives me longer time to enjoy my travels.

3. You take really good pictures also, what would you say is responsible
for that?

Constant practice and lots of patience. I also own a fairly good camera, so that helps as well

4. Where are those 3 places you’d want to revisit and why?

1. South Africa (Cape Town): I had a great time during my last trip and the city is so beautiful.
2. Italy: Also a very beautiful country with lots of beautiful cities. I would love to go back and explore as many as I can.
3. USA: I think I didn’t do the US justice the first time I visited. I’d like a do over!

Amarachi of travel with a pen

5. What do you think is responsible for Nigerians lackluster attitude towards traveling?

When it comes to travelling within Nigeria, let’s face it, it’s a tough terrain to explore. From lack of information to bad roads, transport services and lackluster sites, there’s very little motivation to explore Nigeria. I also think that a lot of people are fixed on certain destinations and believe that travel is always expensive. Part of what my blog does is to dispel this myth and encourage Nigerians to explore more places on a budget.

6. You once slept in a (male) stranger’s house during one of your travels. What were you thinking? Why did you take such a risk?

There’s really no reward without risks. That applies to travel as well. A lot of people who know me would say that I am very safety conscious and I tend to over-think everything. So Couchsurfing was not a decision I made overnight. As I always advice on my blog, doing your due diligence is a must and so is trusting your guts. I read reviews of people who had stayed with my host in the past and even contacted some of them personally. I also spoke to my host over a couple of days before my trip and felt very comfortable to surf with him.
I agree that couchsurfing isn’t for everyone and if you don’t feel comfortable with it, you don’t have to try it. I also realize that people (read as Nigerians) tend to get a mental picture of what sleeping in a (male) stranger’s house should be like. In the wake of ‘Me Too’ and all the horror stories we read on the media, this is a valid concern but the world is much broader and kinder than it is being portrayed and sometimes, things are just as they seem.
7. What would you say about the level of tourism in Nigeria compared to other African countries?

Nigeria isn’t ready for tourism. Other African countries have put in some level of infrastructure in place to promote tourism within their respective countries, Nigeria hasn’t and doesn’t seem to be interested in doing so. And unlike Nigeria, other countries also have a good backing from their government.

Amarachi of travel with a pen

8. If you were to remain in a country till death comes calling, which would it be?

That’s a bit difficult to choose. Off the top of my head, I might say South Africa (Cape Town), Italy or Nigeria.

9. The weirdest food you’ve eaten in a foreign land.

I haven’t tried that many weird things. I’d say the strangest is Octopus (in France).

10. What’s your Most memorable and regrettable journey since choosing
this lifestyle?

I can confidently say that I have no regrets. I am so glad and grateful for my journey so far and can only look forward to bigger and better things. My most memorable would have to be couchsurfing in Benin. Simply because, it’s just opened me up to so many exciting adventures

11. Advice to aspiring travel bloggers

Do it for passion – I’m sure this has been said time and time again. But that’s what will keep you going when no one reads your blog, or pays you to travel the world. Enjoy what you’re doing. Living in the moment. Find your niche and own it.
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