About Nomadic Yak
Adventure Waits for No One
Even the most avid explorers need a little help from time to time.
Because everyone should experience at least one solo adventure in their lifetime.
A journey where you discover hidden wonders. Veer off of the standard tourist trail. Build bonds with locals in far-off lands. Return with stories of strange and foreign cultures!
And along the way, you just might find out what you’re really made of.
So, are you ready for your own adventure?
If you’re brave enough, Nomadic Yak is here to guide you on your next solo journey.
A Yarn About a Nomadic Yak
Every page and post on Nomadic Yak has been written and designed by me, Harry – a lanky young lad from Sydney, Australia.
At age 22, I had never travelled overseas. I was socially awkward, racked in debt and stuck in a career that I didn’t care about.
I longed to escape the norm. I longed for adventure.
Six years later, I have travelled solo through 35 countries and work wherever I like as a freelance writer (I’m currently writing this from a cafe in Bath, UK).
However, I had to travel many rocky roads to get to this stage in life. Maybe you can learn from my mistakes…
Tied to Australia for 22 years
For the first 22 years of my life, I never left my island home – Australia.
Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t a convict bound in chains.
But one of the problems with Australia is that it’s a long way from anywhere.
However, I was lucky enough to travel all around Australia with my family: camping in The Outback, skiing the Snowy Mountains, and scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef.
But having seen every corner of this Great Southern Land, I still wondered what curiosities lay beyond the infinite expanses of the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
Mr Shy Guy
When I was in my early twenties and scrolling through social media, I noticed that everyone was travelling overseas with their buddies – the lads’ trip to Bali or the group holiday in Greece.
But I only had a handful of friends after high school and none were interested in travel. And even if I could convince them, I didn’t want the hassle of organising everything.
So what was I supposed to do? Travel alone? Wouldn’t people think I was weird?
Besides, I was shy and introverted. I’d struggle to strike up a conversation with other travellers, let alone make new friends.
I was intimidated.
So I forgot about travelling, stuck to the comforts of home and did what I was supposed to do – attend university.
The Streets of Kyoto
Like most kids, I’d always dreamed of visiting Disneyland.
That dream came true when my family booked a 2-week trip to Japan in 2016 – my first time overseas.
But Tokyo Disneyland wasn’t all that it was cracked up to be. It was just another theme park like any other – there was nothing magical about it.
However, there was magic everywhere else I looked – real magic.
Shinto temples protected by towering warriors. Steamy backstreets lit by floating lanterns. Loud conversations echoing from bars the size of broom cupboards. Trains moving so fast that you couldn’t even see them coming.
In particular, I have a vivid memory of throwing on a coat one afternoon and walking alone down the streets of Kyoto – the first time I’d been on my own in a foreign country.
I spent hours watching geishas bustling down the narrow paths in colourful komodos. And as I did so, content and alone, I realised something – life waits for no one.
If I was going to travel overseas, I could not wait around for friends or family. I would have to be brave and venture out alone.
A $65,000 Burden
After returning from Japan, I was ready to take a risk and travel solo for the first time.
Bugger waiting around for others. I had a bucket list to start ticking off!
But there were still three things holding me back – an unfinished law degree (that had left me $65,000 in debt), an expensive rental agreement and a part-time sales job paying the bills.
Not to mention I only had $3,000 in savings.
But I couldn’t wait – there was a whole world out and it would take a lifetime to explore.
On a whim, I booked a cheap ticket to Thailand.
I quit my job, put university on hold and paid upfront for a month’s rent.
My flight departed 7 days later.
Anarchy in South East Asia
It wasn’t until I landed in Bangkok that I realised I had no idea what I was doing.
Standing in line at immigration, I started to stress. Shit, was I supposed to get a visa? How am I going to get to my hostel? Where is my hostel even located? Fuck, I don’t have any data on my phone to use Google Maps!
And the problems didn’t stop there.
Throughout my 3 month trip, I had my phone pickpocketed whilst stumbling home from a seedy bar. My hand was hand crushed by a baby elephant. I was scammed numerous times by Tuk-Tuk drivers. I had to evade corrupt Vietnamese police officers on my motorbike. And that’s just the start of it.
I had no idea what I was doing. But somehow, I survived (and had a hell of a time doing it).
Even now, I still make mistakes when travelling alone. But I use my experiences to help other solo travellers avoid getting lost, arrested, injured or worse.
A Year in a Backpack
All my problems and responsibilities were still waiting for me when I got back from Asia.
I was broke and bored at university. The only thing keeping me sane was the thought of my next solo adventure.
My opportunity came in the form of an exchange program – I’d been randomly selected to study in Stockholm, Sweden for a year.
I had no idea where Sweden was. All I knew was that it was expensive.
Over six months, I scraped together a few dollars at a cold-calling sales job. But I wasn’t going to travel all the way to Europe and only visit one country – so I planned a year-long expedition on a very tight budget.
Living out of a 15kg backpack, I managed to tour Europe, tramp around Turkey and visit Africa for the first time with a trip to Morocco.
By the time I settled down in Sweden, I was worried that immigration wouldn’t let me in due to a lack of funds.
But with just a few hundred dollars and a couple of clothes, I managed to have 6 of the best months of my life. And I met my Swedish sweetheart, Anna-Karin.
If there’s one thing I learnt that year abroad, it was how to enjoy solo travel whilst living off of the bare minimum.
Escaping the Rat Race
No matter how skilled you are at stretching a dollar, the good times can only last for so long (or so I thought).
After returning from my year abroad, I thought my days of travel were over. It was time to do what everybody else was doing – get a 9-5 job, spend hours riding the bus each day, struggle to save for a mortgage and then party on the weekends.
And that is what I did. I finally finished that university degree and found an unpaid paralegal role.
A few months later, I was sat on a park bench and thought: is this really it from now on?
Then and there, I made a decision that changed the course of my life.
I quit my role at the law firm the next day and said goodbye to my legal career.
I took my savings and started hatching a plan for an alternative career – something that would allow me to travel and work from wherever I like, whenever I like.
The Birth of Nomadic Yak
Having abandoned my legal career, I was anxious to start earning an income again.
I was also halfway through the series Mad Men. I’d never heard of copywriting before. But it seemed like something I’d enjoy.
Over the next 3 months, I worked as a freelance writer on UpWork. I was paid 5 cents per hour. But I didn’t care, I wanted the experience.
I wrote all sorts of copy and content. I worked with lawyers, builders, tech firms, automotive companies, product manufacturers, games developers.
Out of all the industries I dabbled in, however, there was one I particularly enjoyed – travel writing.
Three years and 500 articles later, my freelance gig had developed into a full-time business. Suddenly, I had the freedom to travel and work from Spain, Hungary, India or Argentina – anywhere I liked!
It was in 2022 that I decided I had the skills and know-how to build my own website – Nomadic Yak.
I created Nomadic Yak with one intention – to help solo travellers plan the most exciting and authentic adventure possible.
It doesn’t matter how broke, time-poor, shy or inexperienced you are. My story proves that anyone can (and should) take at least one solo journey in their life!
Because along the way, you just may find out who you really are.
Contact the Yak
I pour every spare minute of my time into Nomadic Yak. I want to make solo travel a reality for anyone who yearns for adventure.
These days, I split most of my time between England, Australia and Sweden. I live with my partner Anna-Karin and we spend around 3 months each year travelling to new and familiar destinations.
Please contact me if you have any suggestions as to how I can create a better resource for solo travellers (or any questions you’d like to ask me personally). I’m always happy to hear from my readers.
How can Nomadic Yak help you?
On Nomadic Yak, I use my solo travel experience to help curious-minded people plan exciting and rewarding adventures.
It doesn’t matter how much money, spare time, social confidence or travel experience you have – Nomadic Yak is here to guide you through your solo travels.
Is solo travel right for you?
Solo travel is about breaking free from the burdens of group travel and enjoying a more authentic adventure. That means:
- Exploring beyond crowded tourist traps to discover hidden gems that few others ever witness.
- Mingling with the locals and fellow travellers rather than isolating yourself in a hotel room.
- Tasting exotic street foods and local delights rather than a Big Mac from the nearest Mcdonald’s.
- Travelling off the beaten track by bus, train, plane, motorbike or automobile.
- Minimising environmental harm and benefiting local communities instead of stampeding around in a destructive herd of tourists.
- Choosing your own path and setting your own schedule rather than living by someone else’s itinerary.
Solo adventure travel means really getting to know the country, the people and the culture. Because travel shouldn’t always be easy. It should be eye-opening, character-building and rewarding.
Don’t worry. You’ll still spend plenty of time by the pool.
But solo travel lets you write your own adventure. Tales that you will recount for a lifetime.
So, what are you waiting for?
Start planning the first chapter of your solo travel adventure today.