We caught up with Paul Sayegh, our traveller of the week. He has travelled for many reasons, but the one thread that weaves through each trip he takes is his insatiable curiosity and desire to experience different cultures.

Paul tells us about his most memorable trips, what inspires him, and what he has planned next.

Flytographer: Orsi in Lisbon

5 Questions with Paul

What do you love most about travel?
I love the anticipation of what I’m about to experience. That right there always fuels my passion about travelling. The moment when the plane is about to land in a foreign country, and the next day when I leave my hotel or apartment to start exploring the city give me that sense of excitement.

What’s the most memorable trip that you’ve taken?
May I choose two? The first most memorable trip was visiting Beirut, Lebanon in the summer of 2013. It’s where my father’s family is from. Beirut is the crossroads between French & Middle Eastern culture. There is nothing that compares to the warmth of the people, the Lebanese hospitality, and the cuisine. The second most memorable trip was last year in November when I travelled to Cuenca, Ecuador for a medical mission trip helping children with congenital orthopedic abnormalities. It was truly a life-changing experience for me. I worked as Recovery Room nurse on the trip and to see the gratitude and appreciation that was received by the medical group was the best feeling ever.

Any advice for solo travellers?
I’ve been travelling solo for years. The most common statement and question I receive are, “Wow, you’re so brave!” and “How do you do it?” It’s not difficult. It’s healthy to be taken out of your comfort zone. That’s part of life. It’s how we grow as individuals and form our personalities. If you go to a pub in a foreign city, strike up a conversation with a fellow local. Most of the time, people enjoy talking to strangers. Also, don’t be afraid to ask for advice!

What inspires you to travel? What are your biggest takeaways from your trips?
Curiosity inspires me to travel. As a child, I used to read books about different parts of the world. The curiosity of going there and experiencing a new country, a new city, meeting new people gives me that inspiration. My biggest takeaway from my trips is knowledge, which gives me a better understanding of the world.

Where are you planning on travelling next?
I have a couple trips lined up. In October and November, I’m planning a trip to New York City for a nursing conference and then flying direct to Hawaii (my first time). Next year, I am planning my first trip to Asia! I hope to visit Japan, South Korea, and Hong Kong in either the spring or autumn seasons. Stay tuned!

It’s healthy to be taken out of your comfort zone. It’s how we grow as individuals & form our personalities. – Paul

Flytographer: Orsi in Lisbon

Flytographer: Ufuk in Istanbul

Flytographer: Amelia in Buenos Aires

See more: Buenos Aires – Lisbon – solo traveller – traveller of the week