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What qualifies one as a "World Traveller"?

Travel Forums General Talk What qualifies one as a "World Traveller"?

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51. Posted by james (Travel Guru 4136 posts) 7y

I would have thought that a world traveller was someone who visits different worlds.

52. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

Surely that would be a "Worlds" traveller.

53. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5596 posts) 7y

Quoting james

I would have thought that a world traveller was someone who visits different worlds.

Well yeah of course, the first, second and third world countries. I went to Africa by space shuttle!

54. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

Wish someone would explain in detail, what a 1st, 2nd etc. world actually means.

55. Posted by madpoet (Respected Member 413 posts) 7y

The concept of 1st, 2nd and 3rd worlds originated during the Cold War. The "First World" meant the non-communist, developed countries. The "Second World" meant the communist countries, and the "Third World" meant the poor, developing countries (now referred to by the P.C. term "The South", as most of the countries are in the tropical zone). For some reason- I don't know why- the terms "First World" and "Second World" fell out of use, but "Third World" didn't.

Of course, there were some countries, like China, that could be described as both Second World and Third World countries, as they were both communist and developing.

56. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

Interesting, the countries that are called communist - they ain't really communist (in terms of the meaning of the word) at all - are they??!!

57. Posted by Ofelia (Respected Member 142 posts) 7y

Quoting madpoet

a world traveller should have met at least the following criteria:

1) Travelled to all 6 inhabited continents.
2) Crossed the Date Line, and both the Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn.
3) Visited all 4 oceans.
4) Visited at least 1/4 of all the countries in the world (approx. 50 countries).
5) Circumnavigated the world, east to west or west to east.
6) Seen a variety of terrains (desert, tundra, steppe, rain forest, etc.)
7) Travelled by a wide variety of means (train, plane, ship, car, camel, etc.)
8) Be familiar with many different cultures, religions, languages, etc.

I've never posted anything here before, but after seeing this I felt I should...as my friend and I just chatted about this. We both fill all the above criteria, but both of us feel very un-travelled. Possibly because the more you see, the more you realise how much there is to the world, and how impossible it is to see/ experience it all.
There is no such thing as a world traveller. I don't think travel can be measured in any particular quantity. More than anything, I think I felt like a world traveller on my first trip- the altitude of freedom and all that...

58. Posted by Redpaddy (Inactive 1004 posts) 7y

I like that 1. The more I travel, the more I haven't seen - sort of. Makes perfect sense.

59. Posted by Ladymacwil (Full Member 170 posts) 7y

Makes sense to me too.

But I hesitate to make fun of the "arm chair" traveller. True, there is nothing like actually being there, yet, someone who is well read, may sometimes, get more than the tourist just passing through, if you get my drift, ( Why am I thinking of Americans here?) Reminds me of the play; "If it's Tuesday it must be Belgium". There is nothing like embracing a culture, with it's unique sounds, smells, cuisine, verbage, etc. I give more credit to one who has immersed themselves in reading, studying, about a culture than one just passing through... ("Yeah, I was on the high speed train that day..so I was there...)

There is nothing that compares to actually "living" in a foreign place, even for a week or so, but just passing through? On that note, the "arm chair" traveller may indeed know more or have a fuller experience as they may have more a sense of that country's history or culture than those on the high speed train. Perhaps they are still saving money to ultimately visit that place, and have not yet been as fortunate as many of us have to have been there... Yet. Give them at least a bit of credit. Some people have all the money in the world and have been simply tourist and still don't have a clue. I'm reminded of Noel Coward:

"Why do the wrong people travel, travel, travel
When the right people stay at home?
What peculiar obsessions
Inspire those processions
Of families from Houston, Tex,
With all those cameras around their necks?
They will take a train
Or an aeroplane
For an hour on the Costa Brava,
And they'll see Pompeii
On the only day
That it's up to its ass in molten lava!
Millions of tourists are churning up the gravel
While they gaze at St. Peter's Dome,
But why oh WHY do the wrong people travel
When the right people stay at home."
- Noel Coward, "Why Do They Wrong People Travel?"

Just playing Devil's advocate...

60. Posted by Ladymacwil (Full Member 170 posts) 7y

And that is so true...the more I've seen reminds me of what I have not seen. (..yet!)
But I'd rather be in the company of a knowledgable traveller who has visited a scant few countries than one who counts numbers as a tourist, just passing through....

(Which, of course, is none of us here. I think most of us are die-hard travellers. It just get's under our skin like a thirst! Once you are bitten...) But I would like to think that we would encourage those who would like to travel to do so and learn from our experiences, rather than boast, "Well, I've done that and you haven't. Anyone been across the fourty-ninth parrallel ...yet? (Interesting movie BTW).

Anyway, JMHO.

And you got to start somewhere.....

BTW, what's wrong with Antartica? I haven't been there myself...yet... but I personally know a few who have, ( Now those are REAL World travellers!) It depends on who is making the list really, doesn't it?

I think "World Traveller" has a few different meanings....Travel the World, start somewhere, enbrace everything! That to me is a World Traveller and the poster is right..."It is not about where I've been...but where I want to go next!" Now that...is a World Traveller!!!

[ Edit: Edited on 07-Jul-2009, at 01:20 by Ladymacwil ]