Tina Rozul is a passionate, self-confessed travel addict based in Seattle, Washington. She’s traveled to nearly 30 countries, 6 continents – and counting. Meet Tina, our Tripper of the Week….
You’ve traveled everywhere from Brazil and Argentina to Czech Republic, Egypt, South Korea and Australia. What were some of your favorite places?
My favorite places to travel were places I got to step out of my comfortzone and experience the local culture firsthand. From camel riding around the Great Pyramids, celebrating Carnival on the streets of Rio de Janeiro, learning how to Tango dance in Argentina, to working in France has allowed me to discover so much about the world and myself!
When was the first time you traveled abroad? What was your most memorable experience on that trip?
My first taste of international soil was to the Philippines at the age of 12. The experience was an eye opener as it sparked my curiosity for new cultures. I was able to experience the culture of my ancestors and got to meet four generations of family I didn’t even know existed at the time. This trip allowed me to learn about myself and where I came from.
You joined AIESEC, the world’s largest student-run organization with a presence in over 110 countries and 60,000 members. What was it like to be an AIESECer ?
To be an AIESECer is such a mind blowing experience. The organization provides young individuals the opportunity to develop themselves both on a personal and professional level while fostering cultural awareness. AIESEC offers work opportunities abroad and international conferences where its members get to participate in cultural exchange and leadership building seminars. I’ve traveled to nearly 30 countries across 6 continents and in every country have met with AIESECers. AIESEC changed my life and opened my mind to the world; I wouldn’t be who I am today without it.
Which of the destinations you’ve visited surprised you most?
A destination that surprised me was Istanbul, Turkey. Istanbul is a fusion of smells, tastes, culture, and history as it is where Asia and Europe meet both physically and culturally. The city’s endless variety is what fascinated me the most, as the grand mosques, museums, churches, palaces, bazaars and sights of natural beauty are infinite. Over the course of only three days I became enchanted with the city, Turkish tea, rooftop dining, its locals and unique cultural mix of past and present.
In addition to getting to know other cultures via travel, you also love to host. Tell us a bit about why.
Being able to show a traveler around from a local perspective is such a rewarding experience. I love taking them to hidden secrets of the city and my favorite Happy Hour Places! The interaction that takes place between a local and traveler is this intense encounter where a steep learning curve can take place in a short time.
You love hanging out with travelers and people like travel writers whose life revolves around travel. What is it about travel and the travel community that inspires you?
I love the travel community because of their passion, sense of adventure and willingness to learn and step-outside of their comfort zones!
I will forever be grateful to AIESEC for exposing me to a global network of cultural change agents and teaching me how to impact others. I’ve gained inspiration from online travel communities like TBEX and Matador Network. Mad love goes to Go2it (a site for travelers to share stories & plan trips) for introducing me to Twitter travel talks (like #TTOT, #TNI, #NUTS). Through these communities traveling and networking with the world are just fingertips away.
For every person I’ve met during my travels, whether it be across the globe or on the web, I learn something new and gain a different perspective on life. Not a day goes by where I don’t think about traveling and experiencing the world and all its endeavors!
Where are you traveling next?
My next trip will be a combination of both domestic and international travel as I’ll be exploring Miami, Key West and the Bahamas. You can follow my adventures as a Seattle Tripper over the next few weeks as I take on the world one trip and momentous experience at a time
Tina, thank you for sharing your experiences and have a great time in Miami-KeyWest-the Bahamas! Can we come with ?