“I don’t mean to brag, but I have the best job in the world.”
For the last decade, travel blogger Matt Gibson has been exploring the planet.
After Matt graduated from university, he moved to Taiwan. There he met a travel blogger and heard about the amazing, life-changing adventures they were experiencing. “I knew right then, that’s exactly what I want to do.”
To chronicle his adventures, Matt started the blog xpatmatt.com, which combines all three of his passions: travelling, writing, and photography.
Some of the first countries he travelled to were Cambodia, Thailand, and the Philippines, which is his favourite spot he’s ever visited. “It’s amazing! It’s more than 2,000 islands, and there’s so much variety across them,” says Matt. “You can go swimming with whale sharks, you can see tarsiers, and you can go island hopping to uninhabited islands where no one lives. You can have the whole island to yourself!”
Another unique (and scary!) adventure? Motorcycling through a monsoon in Borneo. “I was riding with a tight timeline. I couldn’t stop, so I got stuck riding through the heaviest monsoon I’ve ever seen for about eight hours,” Matt says. “But traveling is like that. Sometimes you’ve got to take the good with the bad.”
As much as Matt loves the hot locales, he’s equally comfortable in the cold wilderness. An avid snowboarder, he’s shredded all over North America. This past January, while attending the X-Games in Aspen, Colorado, as a member of the media, he planned a massive snowboarding trip that would take him all through the western United States.
Next up, Matt wants to go to Mongolia, Nepal, and western China to see the mountains.
And although Matt can definitely be classified as an adrenaline junkie, he also loves experiencing new cultures, meeting new people, and appreciating the quiet, beautiful moments of travelling. In the southern Philippines, he visited a village of the Eskaya, a group of people who have a unique language and writing system that linguists have been unable to link to any other known language. And in another area of the Philippines, he met a 100-year-old woman who is the last practitioner of a traditional, ancient form of weaving.
“Traveling has opened my eyes to things I could have never learned otherwise,” Matt says. “About people, the world, and about myself.”
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