About


Wandering Earl
Aloha!

My name is Earl.

(Actually, Earl is my middle name, but that’s what everyone calls me. Derek is my first name.)


My Life as a Permanent Nomad

On December 25th, 1999, I left the USA for a three-month, post-graduation trip to Southeast Asia. It’s now been over fourteen years and that trip has yet to finish.

The adventure has involved over 85+ countries (view the list here) on 6 continents, work as a Tour Manager on board cruise ships, two years in India, experiments with meditation, muse-creation, mountain-climbing and movie acting, volunteer work, an inappropriate amount of time on tropical islands and eating inappropriate amounts of street food, a two-day kidnapping, being placed on the US ‘terror watch list’, teaching English in Asia and a fruitless search for a pair of sandals with sufficient arch-support for my flat feet, among many other things.

It was exactly three days into my first trip back in 1999, as I celebrated the Millennium at Angkor Wat in Cambodia, when I became inflicted with an untreatable addiction to world exploration. So addicted in fact, that the thought of returning home literally made me sick to my stomach. Therefore, without any other option, I made a decision to change paths in life. Instead of going home to follow my original goal of becoming a Sports Agent, I now embarked on a mission to transform myself into a permanent nomad so that I could continue my travels, and more importantly continue learning from those travels, for as long as possible.

The only problem was that I had absolutely no idea what I was doing and I only had $1500 to my name.

Therefore, as any good problem-solver would have done, I ignored this one fact and worked on creating a solution anyway. Miraculously, and perhaps with the help of some determination and refusal to accept anything less than the achievement of my goals, I eventually managed to create the nomadic life I envisioned.

Ever since, I’ve spent my time constantly traveling around the world, always in search of that eye-opening first-hand education that only travel can provide. I don’t travel to simply check countries off a list. In fact, as a permanent nomad, I have little interest in the actual sights that a particular destination may offer, instead preferring to focus on the human interactions and lessons learned along the way.

And when I combine the rewards that such travel provides with the fact that I can pack all of my possessions into my one backpack and hop on a flight to anywhere in the world on any given day, perhaps you can see why I don’t plan to give up this exhilarating lifestyle any time soon.

To learn more about my travel philosophy, check out my “New Breed of Explorer” page!

Join Me On My Global Adventures!

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Why You Should Follow WanderingEarl.com

WanderingEarl.com came into existence in late 2009 upon realizing that I wanted to share my adventures with a much wider audience while being able to connect with other like-minded folks at the same time.

And what you’re looking at right now is the result.

I don’t claim to have any answers. To be honest, most of the time I don’t even know what the questions are, and truthfully, I don’t worry too much about that. What I am able to do is try and prove that a life of travel is not a crazy fantasy, but a realistic lifestyle option instead.

And I can also…

  • tell you where to find a heavenly mango lassi (topped with cherries!) in Calcutta
  • share entertaining tales of my travel adventures
  • offer useful, proven advice on how to live a life of extended travel
  • force you to think about how and why you want to explore this world
  • and perhaps, inspire you to live a life without regrets

Towards the beginning of my journey, people were quick to tell me that I was wasting my life by refusing to ‘settle down’. Yet over the years, all of those dissenting voices have become silent. I now receive a good chunk of my motivation from the fact that many of these original naysayers have broken free from the conventional life themselves and joined me as fellow permanent nomads and global citizens.

Will you join us as well? The world would certainly be a much better place if you did.

163 Responses to About

  1. Clelia says:

    This is a perfect sentence to sum up why people (including me) love your website so much…I saw many blogs, and the one I keep coming back for more are not necessarily those with the latest fancy design and an endless list of places to see.

    We are human, we live out of our emotions, and you have the special gift to convey these emotions in such an easy way, effortlessly and honestly.

    There is a sentence you wrote here that sums it up perfectly:
    “I don’t travel to simply check countries off a list. In fact, as a permanent nomad, I have little interest in the actual sights that a particular destination may offer, instead preferring to focus on the human interactions and lessons learned along the way”

    I really hope that you will never change this attitude, as that’s what makes you really special and an inspiration for many of us.

    Being a travel blogger myself I don’t have time to read other blogs, but I still read yours because, before being a BLOGGER, I am a TRAVELER first.

    Thanks for your constant inspiration Earl.
    Cheers

  2. ajay says:

    hey earl
    i am an indian and one thing i should say is that your life rocks dude seriously its a lott better then sitting behinf a computer all day smashing the keyboard
    i am seriously envied and inspired by you
    ajay

  3. Andrea says:

    Hi Earl,
    Just reading your website and love it. Just wondering – how do you decide which countries to visit next? How much time in advance do you decide and how long is the process for going to the next one? And do you find the applications for visas difficult?
    Also, another topic – do you have any suggestions for traveling with young kids?
    Thanks.

  4. Sandeep Jain says:

    Which part of world you are in, Today?

  5. Pettie says:

    Hi Earl,

    I bought your book “how to live a life of travel”. I really find the advice helpful since I am travelling to Thailand in October 2014. Thank you for this most helpful resource, I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to travel long-term.

  6. Panny says:

    Hello earl!! This is so inspiring, i love your blog and your life! I was wondering..would you say that a girl could live like this?

    • Wandering Earl says:

      Hey Panny – All I can say is “Absolutely”! There is no shortage of solo female travelers out there in the world living this exact same lifestyle…I meet them in just about every country I visit!

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