award-winning solo travel blogger

The Wandering Writer

Woohooo! November started with a bang when I hit a big milestone for this travel blog! My honest article on Brunei went viral there and the site crashed after it was flooded with traffic. 

About time for a travel blog that has been around for 3 years… 1 Nov 2016 will forever be the day Bruneians crashed my site. More importantly, it was a day I made friends in Brunei and they made me feel so welcomed. 

I thought that was my first milestone until I remembered two more that I had totally discounted. In July, my favourite radio station BFM89.9 invited me to speak about my adventures in Tonga on their Ticket To Ride show. I’m rarely the one being interviewed so it was nerve-wracking but fun!

In October, The Sun Daily featured me on their Next Gen column featuring “inspiring people under 30”. I’m super flattered that the writer, Jessica Chua, wanted me on it. She did a great job in capturing me in a nutshell (Thanks Jessica!). Take a read, if you prefer reading the online version, click here


When I first started solo backpacking many years ago, my parents thought I was depressed, my brothers tried to talk me out of it. The general consensus was that it’s a bad idea for a girl with zero upper body strength and the mental sharpness of a blunt knife to gallivant foreign lands unaccompanied.

It also didn’t help that my first few solo destinations were Mauritius, Egypt and Jordan, but that’s beside the point.

The point is, through my bullheadedness, my parents gave up on me. They slowly learned to trust my judgments and allowed me to be the free bird that I needed to be. That was probably one of the best things that had ever happened.

This wee travel blog then started on a whim in 2013 as a fun hobby because I was tired of writing depressing news articles for my day job. It’s a really awesome feeling that people (and not just my mom) are starting to read my ramblings. It’s an ever greater feeling to know that there are people out there who appreciate my stories (and not just my mom). You guys have no idea how motivating and empowering that is for me to write more.

You know, I never had the courage of calling myself a Malaysian travel blogger or a travel writer. I think I’ll start doing that now without feeling like a fake.

Looking lost at Key Summit, Milford Road, New Zealand. Photo by Jeffrey Ong.

Read some of my favourite articles here: 

6 Reasons Why Travelling Is The Best Education You Can Get 
The Penknife Story
A Super Intense Family Trip: Stuck In A Van Together For 6 Days
The Business Of Buddhism In Sri Lanka

I’m dedicating to honest travel stories that’ll teach and inspire. If you like travelling vicariously through my stories and photos, do follow my personal Facebook and Instagram profiles where I share more stories. :)

How I Accidentally Became A Cross-dresser In Somaliland

Guest Post: Zaina Brown

Crossing a border into someplace new always gave me a jolt of excitement. That first impression could be warm like a hug, polite like a handshake, or rude like a middle finger. Somaliland, however, felt like a punch in the face. Was this whole trip a big mistake? For the first time in my life, I considered flat-out giving up on a country – and it hadn’t even been 24 hours.

Why Egypt Should Be In Your 2019 Travel Plans

When Malaysia Airline’s inflight magazine Going Places asked me to recommend where their readers should travel to in 2019, I thought long and hard. Among all the countries I have backpacked, what is the one place I would recommend my friends and family to go? Where is the one travel destination that I would gladly return to?

Egypt. My heart is yearning for fascinating African nation of Egypt.