One miracle that only adventurers and risk-takers can experience is the wonder of building good friendships out of the strangest events with amazing people from different walks of life. This is a magic that I have experienced after deciding to join 14 other strangers hike the scorching secret trail of Taal Volcano last April 17, 2016. Honestly, my only goal for joining this bunch of couchsurfers was to tick off Item #48 from my Bucket List and do it without spending much. Being in a group was the wisest thing to do but I couldn’t find enough friends that would give up their Sunday on such a short notice. That moment when clicking “Attending” a couchsurfing event is such a risky choice but eventually proved to be worth it. Some people may find it very incautious to join a group of strangers during travel but the thrill is real for those like me seeking to beat comfort zones.
Being a part of this group of 15 adventurers from different countries didn’t just tick off Taal Volcano from my list but it started the realization of my Item #26 from the same list. I did not just gain an experience, I gained a family. Unlike with the other travel-with-strangers that I experienced, this one exemplified camaraderie gained in just one day and strengthened as the days pass. The WanderWalkers, a rather non-exclusive group is just a representation of many other friendships that were formed because of travel and adventure. Anybody can be a WanderWalker.
And so I (Jonai) was inspired to start (and hopefully maintain) this blogsite to inspire others about the benefits of traveling with strangers. I don’t really believe that one can travel alone and have the best experience out of it. I met a German guy from my travel in Hanoi who said that, “You don’t really travel alone because you get to be with other travelers.” I couldn’t agree with him more.