HomeAsiaSoutheast AsiaThis Awkward Guy Had A Life Changing AdventureWho would have thought that my hobbies could allow me to chase my dreams and go on a life-changing adventure. This guy traveled around Asia for five years, yet he still couldn’t get enough of exploring the Philippines. By Marcos Detourist on March 21, 2014Remember that kid who was awkward, silent, and always kept a pokerface, the kid that everybody would ask to fix their computer? Well, I was that kid.I did not feel like a total outcast, not all the time, fortunately. I was your typical, but not so ordinary teenager, who loved a taste of freedom and went on out-of-town trips as often as my time, piggy bank, and parents would allow.Most of the time, traveling did NOT feel like an escape. It felt like inching my way closer to the real world — a world that was beckoning to be explored.I was at peace when on the road. I could listen to my thoughts and understand so much of things around me better.Early on, what I wanted to do in life came to me naturally like a priest would his calling. Living a life of adventure appealed to me so much more than building a traditional career.It was crazy!A mere childhood fantasy indulged by a daydreamer.“How to do it?” I asked myself repeatedly. The answer wasn’t clear until I finished school and started chasing my passions.Becoming a nomadTravel blogging only started as a hobby, but after reading stories of people who have made a living out of it, I couldn’t resist throwing my hat into the ring.Could it finally be the answer I was looking for?Many sleepless months passed before my earnings were enough to fuel my wanderlust. My dreams felt like they were within reach and life was taking a major turn.I wasn’t laughing (and doing cartwheels) all way to the bank, if that’s what you’re thinking. Living a nomadic lifestyle was possible because I planned on traveling very cheaply.Alone but not lonelyHaving the means to travel was only the first step.I suffered gravely from insecurities that stemmed from my social awkwardness. Conquering these inner demons was my biggest challenge.I was scared of unfamiliar people, even more so, of those people rejecting me because I was different.Yet there I was, about to sail my way into a world full of strangers.A discovery put my anxieties to a short hibernation — being introverted had its advantages when traveling alone. My thoughts kept good company and I was easily fascinated with things around me, even the most mundane details.Kindred spiritsI didn’t want to stay in my bubble forever. As they say, “no man is an island.” Meeting and learning from like-minded people was a major reason why I wanted to travel.My first solo backpacking trip led me to El Nido, a small town in Palawan that was home to some of the most gorgeous islands I had ever seen. On an island hopping tour, I met Fritzie, a fellow travel enthusiast, who invited me on a trip she was planning to Calaguas.That following trip, I joined more than twenty of her travelmates, who were all as travel crazed as us!Traveling was an excellent way to practice my social skills. I quickly became comfortable getting close to new people because they were kindred spirits who shared many of my passions.There was no stopping me after I started to learn how to pry my shell open. My travels took me on a life-changing journey around Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao for days, weeks, and even months at a time.I met even more kindred spirits along the way. Not just fellow travelers but also locals who made my trips extra memorable. It was the genuine and innate hospitality of Filipinos that made it more fun in the Philippines!Exploring places that were “off the beaten path” excited me the most and Mindanao was my go-to for off-beat adventures. To find these hidden gems, I befriended locals and talked them into guiding me. In the process, I had the chance to connect with them and learn from their stories.Traveling wasn’t only a way of visiting different places and knowing more about myself. It became a journey into the lives of strangers.Being humanWhen I came back home from my long adventures, I felt different. I saw things around me in a wider perspective and knew myself better than when I left.Travel changed my life on each day that I kept opening myself to other people, discovered new things about the world, learned about different cultures, and dealt with situations that took me out of my comfort zone.Now, I am less scared of unfamiliar people.I understand my personal limits better.I am less insecure and apologetic with my imperfections, which made an excellent base for self-improvement.I learned to make my own decisions.I value my relationships with friends and family more.I appreciate everyday conveniences and simple pleasures more.I love my hometown of Iloilo more. It was the place that first inspired me to travel, and by spending time away, I continually re-discover why I fell in love with it.I realized that the first step to living a happy life is to know who we really are and then sticking true to one’s self.We all have different paths. What defines us are the decisions that we make every waking moment of our lives.In many ways, I am still the same awkward guy who wanted a life of adventure, but I became comfortable in my own skin and my bucketlist has even more places on it.InspiredBecause I constantly need to be inspired to reach my goals, I collected these inspiring quotes that captured the spirit of why I travel. Photos featured below were taken from my adventures around the Philippines.Lastly, here are quotes from my own life-changing adventure:Don’t leave yet. There’s more!1 Month Solo Travel in Northern India: A Survivor’s…DIY Annapurna Base Camp Trek in NepalIloilo and Guimaras 3-Day Itinerary with Injap Tower Hotel3-Day Grand Adventure Tour of Iligan, City of Majestic…Discover more blogs and travel tips in:PhilippinesSoutheast AsiaAsia See all placesLeave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *CommentName * Email * Website Comments Micamyx|Senyorita saysMarch 28, 2014 at 6:29 pmHope you win Marcos! U deserve to win :DReply Marcos Detourist saysApril 1, 2014 at 8:21 pmThanks Mica! I already feel like a winner because of the things I’ve learned and new friends I’ve met on my journey, people like you ^_^Reply Kenneth | MrBratpacker saysMarch 28, 2014 at 7:43 pmThis is so relatable. I found myself in that same position as you were before when I first started traveling. And these lines hit me straight to the core, “Now, I am less scared of unfamiliar people. I understand my personal limits better. I am less insecure and apologetic with my imperfections, which made an excellent base for self-improvement.”Best of luck!Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 1, 2014 at 8:24 pmWhen we travel, we realize how similar our life story is with other travelers we come across. After reading comments like yours, I feel more comfortable sharing my story in hopes of inspiring other people on taking the first step.Reply Lauren saysMarch 29, 2014 at 1:16 amMarcos! Hands down the best video i’ve seen in a while! What a wonderful and creative way of showing how pretty awesome our country is!! <3 best of luck in Wego and i really really hope you win! Cheeeeeeeers!! :DReply Marcos Detourist saysApril 1, 2014 at 8:25 pmThanks as always Lauren! Let’s continue to show travelers what they are missing every time the skip the Philippines — They are missing the best part of Asia!Reply sololightEd saysMarch 29, 2014 at 2:52 amA story worth sharing with beautiful photos and and awesome video inviting everyone to visit the Philippines. I hope you win this one Marcos! More than the prize, everyone should know about your humble beginnings as well as your humble personality. Go go go!Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 1, 2014 at 8:26 pmI hope so too Ed :) Thanks for the encouragement!Reply Pabs saysApril 1, 2014 at 1:53 pmThis is awesome! You got me goosebumps watching this! I have been following your website and touring with you vicariously for years! And I am very grateful of you for founding SSC Iloilo!Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 1, 2014 at 8:36 pmThanks Pabs :) I only initiated the first post on SkyscraperCity Iloilo … everyone who continue to join the discussions on that thread are founders of its evolution as a contributor to Iloilo’s rise as a premiere city in the Philippines.Reply Hannah saysApril 2, 2014 at 9:16 pmHello fellow traveler, I just wanted to say that this is impressive! WOW! :D Thank you for sharing!Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 4, 2014 at 9:10 pmThanks for reading too Hannah ^_^Reply fritz saysApril 2, 2014 at 9:40 pmmarcos…congratulations!…you are already a winner…i honestly envy you for your profound travels in the country…i believe there’s so much out there to explore about our land…i especially thank you for featuring iloilo as one of your top destinations…keep inspiring FILIPINOS through these stuffs so that we’ll all be proud of what we have and i’m grateful for sharing this “pride” with me…you have my salutations!!!!!GODSPEED!Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 4, 2014 at 9:14 pmI’m proud to feature Iloilo in my video. It has so much potential to offer for tourism. Yes, there’s so much more to explore in the Philippines, places I really want to visit in my lifetime. Thanks for the kind words Fritz.Reply Rikka Jaruda saysApril 3, 2014 at 11:15 pmIloilo has been an underdog of tourist destinations for a long time. It’s Iloilo’s time to shine! The Philippines has also been an underdog in countries to visit in Asia. People from other countries have yet to discover that Philippines is truly a paradise. Thank you Marcos for highlighting Philippines and Iloilo :) Keep up the great work! Looking forward to more of your adventures. From a fellow Ilonggo.. Madamo guid nga salamat!Reply mark julius Estur saysApril 4, 2014 at 9:05 amYou’ll surely inspire a lot of readers with your entry. Awesome photos, words and video weaved into one. See you in the road. :)Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 4, 2014 at 9:18 pmThanks Mark! I hope too cross paths with you one of these days too :)Reply Claire | Traveling Light saysApril 4, 2014 at 8:37 pmPanalo ang video! Puwedeng-puwede nang isama sa official “It’s More Fun In The Philippines” campaign. :)Reply Marcos Detourist saysApril 4, 2014 at 9:20 pmThanks Claire. It’s just an amateur video filled with my passion for traveling. I could just imagine how much more awesome it could be with a full production team behind it ^_^Reply Pam saysApril 7, 2014 at 8:01 amWhat you did was very inspiring! I pray that you win because you deserve it!Reply Em saysApril 8, 2014 at 10:42 pmit’s so inspiring !!! nice one! actually I’ve been thinking lately about travelling alone, too! hehheReply Tian Chad saysApril 17, 2014 at 2:08 pmYou’ve inspired me =) Voted for you and all the best!!Reply Poi saysApril 21, 2014 at 7:20 pmIt was indeed a Life Changing Adventure for you. I love the way you quote traveling as not an escape, it’s true, when you travel to connect to the world – it becomes more enjoyable and memorable. To say that you inspired me to travel more is an understatement. You’re epic! :) Good luck to you and many more travels to come!Reply Paula saysMay 7, 2014 at 4:49 pmTraveling is like love. You’d feel the passion more when you close your eyes – Pondering PaodaoleiReply Marcos Detourist saysJune 5, 2014 at 7:27 amI do agree with you. The travel experience is not just what our eyes see, but a mixture of all the senses of our body and mind. The best trips are when it is more than just a fulfilling visual treat.Reply Paula saysMay 7, 2014 at 4:52 pmMy friend. I am deeply honored to have been part of your journey! :-)Reply Marcos Detourist saysJune 5, 2014 at 7:24 amLikewise friend :)Reply Khonie saysMay 21, 2014 at 8:44 amBeautifully written and beautiful photos :)Reply Marcos Detourist saysJune 5, 2014 at 7:24 amThanks Khonie!Reply Ayan Villafuerte saysJune 6, 2014 at 1:27 pmwow. you take the best landscape photos. at ikaw may pinakamagagandang selfie sa balat ng internet. pramis.its refreshing to know travellers who doesn’t only travel but also inspire. puro mababaw kasi yon mga nakakasama ko, kasi nga ako din, i guess i should start sticking out with more serious people =)Reply Marcos Detourist saysJune 7, 2014 at 6:51 amWoah, andami kaya diyan na magagaling mag-selfie. Thanks Ayan :)Your photos tell otherwise, they show a lot of depth, emotion, and passion. Whenever I see them, I get the feeling that your photos always convey a message. You inspire me Ayan.Reply The Chronicles of Mariane saysJuly 20, 2014 at 2:13 amAng ganda Marcos! Ever since I stumbled upon your blog years ago, ikaw na talaga ang naging peg ko when it comes to traveling and inspiring other people to explore and get out of their comfort zones. Nice job on the video, magandang primer ito to convince other backpackers to try and visit PH!Reply Marcos Detourist saysJuly 20, 2014 at 4:53 amWow, Thank you Marianne! I’m honored by your comment :) I do hope that more foreign travelers stumble upon my video and get inspired to travel to the Philippines.Reply Led Danganan saysJuly 22, 2014 at 12:35 pmHi Marcos! What you’ve just shared made my heart and hunger for travel grow fonder — yet again. Your travelogues are like no others’ that I always go back reading them and at times even have them as one of my references when I go traveling. Everything in here is RAD!Reply Marcos Detourist saysJuly 23, 2014 at 8:20 amThanks Led. You just made my day :)Reply Jet saysAugust 18, 2014 at 6:53 amOh My! I have to admit I am extremely jealous right now!!! Can I go travel with you? Fellow Ilonngo/Antiqueno here. I am actually going to have my first solo backpacking on the last week of this month. I am quite nervous and excited as well. Best travel video ever! Hope to meet you when I go back to Iloilo next year. Kudos Marcos!!!!Reply Marcos Detourist saysAugust 24, 2014 at 11:39 amHi Jet, Of course! I haven’t planned any future trips yet but I may post it on Facebook . Woah, good luck on your trip! Stay safe and be open to the experience on the road. Thanks guid!Reply Jet saysAugust 25, 2014 at 4:29 pmSalamat guid Marcos! I am super excited now, hahaha. I am also into photography. Riz saysNovember 25, 2014 at 3:42 pmIdol Mig… baskog ang video..la pa ta kitanay. kitanay ta tani dason ba. :DLove the photos and video — hands down!! :)Reply Marcos Detourist saysNovember 27, 2014 at 3:03 pmGani man. I’d love meet up sometime! Thanks guid Riz :)Reply luis a. bunales jr. saysAugust 27, 2015 at 9:13 amYour travel stories are very inspiring. It almost feels you are living and telling my life story lol! Even as a kid, i know i was born for adventure. I have that insatiable lust of going to places. I grew up in a small island and as a young boy i used to wonder what was beyond our small world. I remember feeling giddy and excited all at once when i stumbled on your page. Thank you for sharing your experience. When my time comes….and it will be soon….ill be on the road as you….and who knows, our paths will cross ….and it would be a happy meeting. Thank you Marcos.ReplyAdventure Starts HereDiscover travel guides and blogs about the Philippines and beyond.