The World Without Filter

Sebastian was born in Mexico City and has lived his entire life there. He loves photography and travelling and has travelled to over 30 countries. He has a keen interest in history, culture, psychology and loves learning local perspectives on countries, society, culture and the world itself.

You can follow more of Sebastian’s travels by heading over to his Instagram: @theworld_withoutfilter


RareJaunt: We have been enjoying your photos on Instagram.

I don’t post on “real time” because I don’t like the pressure of uploading a good picture every day, I prefer to select some nice pictures to upload on my account once I’ve finished my journey of the country. This way, I can relax and take good pictures without having to rush the creative process.

One thing I would never travel without is my camera. Photography has become a personal hobby during my travels.

RJ: Who or what inspired you to start traveling?

When I was a kid my mom, who was already an avid reader, used to read me stories and make up her own stories based on whatever she had read. For my age, it was really amazing to hear my mom saying she had already met a community of Eskimos or that she had been in a fisherman’s village in Indonesia sharing a meal with them. I recall one of the stories that captured my imagination was when she told me she had shared a tea with a nomad community she came across while going on a camel through the desert in Egypt. “All this,’ she used to say, “was possible because I read books.” Not only did she inspire me to eagerly devour books, but she placed the idea in my head which eventually grew into this journey. She inspired me through her various stories to want to get out there and get to know the world.

RJ: What has been a highlight of your travels?

The highlight of my journey is hard to tell, having witnessed so many things! Probably the three most valuable lessons I’ve learned have been: never stop being amazed, never cease learning new things and always treat everyone kindly and with a smile.

RJ: Which country has surprised you the most (has been the most different from your expectations)?

Every country I’ve visited has surprised me in some way, but those that stand out above the rest are: Nepal, Uzbekistan and even though not a country itself, the Tibet Autonomous Region amazed me more than China itself (mainland China).

RJ: Describe a stand-out culinary experience

In Jordan I recall being in a small and humble restaurant with long communal cafeteria tables where you sat along with other people to have lunch. While trying to break the language barrier with the staff, the family sitting next to me asked me where I was from. I replied – From Mexico. Not only did they welcome me to their country but they also gathered all their food in front of me, telling me I was their guest and asking me to share their food with them. I was profoundly moved by their gesture since they were a humble family sharing their own meal with a stranger.

We had a great time eating together and drinking tea.

RJ: What advice would you give to someone wanting to travel?

See and learn as much as you can wherever you go, and have an open mind. Also, take as many pictures as you can!

RJ: Why do you think long-term travel is important?

Not only is long-term travel is important because of the expanded view of the world it’s going to give you, but I believe traveling itself is essential for everyone. It is a great way to get to know yourself and to understand different cultures and ideologies. Once you understand yourself as a human, your view on society changes. You see we are all the same: we laugh, enjoy, cry and have fears, we all have dreams and we are also after our own pursuit of happiness. Even though we live in distant places across the globe, we share our human nature and when you acknowledge that, the closer you are to understanding societies which may seem stranger than your own.

RJ: What are the advantages of traveling solo vs. with a friend or spouse?

Traveling alone teaches you much about yourself, your abilities, limits, thing you didn’t know about your character and most importantly it teaches you a lot about loneliness itself. Traveling with either a friend or spouse will teach you more regarding human relations and of course you will get to learn more about the other person that accompanies you. Also traveling alone will let you analyze countries, people and situations deeper through your own perspectives. I prefer solo traveling, as many people perceive it as something crazy to do!

RJ: What are some of the obstacles you have had to overcome on your travels, and what did you do to overcome them?

Some of the most difficult situations I’ve encountered have been facing people trying to rob me, the sensation of not feeling safe somewhere I just arrived and people being hostile to me. For difficult situations, I just stay focused on solving the current problem without surrendering to emotions. When I feel unsafe, I make my fear a tool to keep me aware of my surroundings without it interfering with my activities.

RJ: Where is next on your list of places to travel?

Pakistan, for sure.

Remember to follow Sebastian on Instagram: @theworld_withoutfilter

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