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“I Wish I Had More Time To Immerse Myself In The Culture…” – Sara Affendy

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Read on to find out what inspires our beautiful Sara to travel the world…

T: A short bio about yourself, A 3-4 lines that best describe you, what you do for a living and so…

S: My name is Sara Affendy and I am a media student who is passionate about history and culture.

Credit: Sara Affendy

T: Where have you been?

S: I’ve been to Australia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Turkey, Wales, Britain, France, Spain, Belgium and the United States.

T: What’s your favourite place so far? Why?

S: Barcelona, Spain — Barcelona is such a cosmopolitan city with grand buildings & monuments to behold. The art & history is magnificent. The old-world charm is magical here. Gaudi has left his imprint all across the city and Barcelona wears its facades proudly. I was able to see the whole of Barcelona from the top of Montjuic Castle. You could see the Mediterranean on one side and the city of Barcelona on the other. Not to forget they have delicious food! I didn’t have any problem finding halal food as there are a lot of Muslims there. You can taste the divine blend of culture in every bite of each meal. There was a hint of sweet, salty, sour all in one bite. And the colours of the condiments and spices that they used feast the eyes as well.

Credit: Sara Affendy

Istanbul, Turkey- Something about the history of the Ottoman Empire fascinates me. Istanbul is such a fascinating mix of cultures both ancient and modern — you’re surrounded with ancient history and also the sophisticated 21st-century city with incredible cuisine, great style, talented artists, and some of the most gracious and beautiful people. And one thing I would highlight is, THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A BAD VIEW IN ISTANBUL. I implore anyone who is going to Istanbul to not enjoy the view but to also learn about the stories behind it so that it will be your best trip ever.

Credit: Sara Affendy

T: What was the most challenging thing about travelling?

S: Time. Not having enough time to discover. For someone who is always curious, I’d try my best to know every detail of each place I visit and to learn more about its history and culture. I always feel I don’t have enough time. Always end up running around catching up buses, train or flight. I wish I can stay longer and to just really learn and immerse myself in their culture.

Credit: Sara Affendy

T: What place is top of your bucket list?

S: Right now, Italy.

T: One advice to travellers?

S: Can I put two, please?

1. Don’t leave behind WIFI/Internet. To some people (like me) they have dreams of travelling to the unknown, getting lost and unplugging from the matrix. But honestly WIFI is your friend and it helped me a lot in what could have been a stressful situation. It can help you when you are lost or looking for somewhere to go. It can be both practical and important in terms of safety (especially women). So, get a local sim to get your internet data.

2. Learn their language. Many people still think that English is sufficient enough to get around. While this can sometimes be true, I personally think that speaking the language of the country you are visiting, or even knowing how to get by in that particular language can have a positive impact on your adventure as a whole. And you don’t need to know everything. Learn how to say “How are you?” and “Thank You” is more than enough.