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#HHWT Explorers: Meet Sarina, The Face Behind dearsarina.com


Zarifah Azhar •  Nov 16, 2016


Traveller Sarina Iskandar writes about her adventures on her blog www.dearsarina.com. She hopes that her blog will benefit other travellers and we definitely think it does! Read on to find out what this wordsmith gets up to during her travels ?
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a blogger at www.dearsarina.com, a girl guide and a freshly resigned social media executive and copywriter. I live for good books and meaningful conversations. My next step in life is actually pretty exciting but you’ll have to follow me on my Instagram (@sarinaiskandar) and blog to find out. It’s still a secret for now! ?
What inspires you to travel and share what you've learned on your travels?
dearsarina pyramids
You know how sometimes you’re magically drawn to a person you barely know? Places can have that magnetic factor, too. It’s a mysterious calling that almost feels compulsory. I believe that our paths have already been written and sometimes you end up at a place because it was simply written for you. I’m fully aware not everyone gets the chance to travel overseas and I want to be able to share the gems I’ve discovered along the way. I believe in adding value to whatever I do, so to me, pairing my personal reflections along with an awesome travel shot is far more beneficial than simply posting a picture of me at a tourist attraction.
What has been the most rewarding experience you've had while exploring the world?
The kindness of complete strangers. When you’re in a foreign land, you’re sometimes forced to trust strangers even if you don’t want to and to me; being treated kindly and sincerely by someone you don’t know is an experience that leaves a footprint in your heart forever.
If you had an unlimited travel budget for 24 hours, what would your itinerary look like?
Oh, what a dream! I would travel comfortably in style to a grand yet cosy place overlooking a stunning, crystal blue seascape with my close friends and sister, where we can admire Mother Nature and reflect on life while eating an array of scrumptious desserts.
What are 3 of your favourite destinations, and why?
Morocco I find Moroccans to be the most fascinating people I’ve ever come across in my life. I’ve never seen people so diverse in the way they look and speak and that’s coming from a Malaysian! Egypt It’s a country so remarkable in every sense: its history, culture and even natural landscapes will render you speechless. Langkawi, Kedah Being part Kedahan (a state in Northern Malaysia), Langkawi feels a lot like home to me. There’s also something truly charming about the legendary archipelago.
Have you faced any misconceptions as a female traveller? What are they and how have your overcome them?
Female travellers are conditioned to believe that the world is scarier and more dangerous for women. Although there may be truth in that, with careful planning, thorough research and common sense, you’re as safe as any other traveller out there.
What are your must-haves while travelling?
A book, sanitising wipes, power bank, camera and a local SIM card if you’re traveling for more than a week.
Do you have any tips for planning a long trip abroad?
Don’t be too ambitious if you tire easily like me; stick to one country (2 max) at a time. The last thing you want is to not be able to fully enjoy your trip because you’re exhausted! Secondly, travel with friends to cut down on costs. Thirdly, if you’re going to have a packed schedule, don’t waste money on a fancy hotel because you’re going to be out the whole day, anyway.
What's your favourite travel photo and why?
This picture was taken while I was up in a hot air balloon in Luxor, Egypt, right before sunrise. The view was epic. From high above, I could see fields of green meet with contrasting Desert Mountains; it was truly breathtaking. That one-hour up in the sky was one of the most magical moments of my life.
Fill in the blank: My hope for the world is that…
We can rise above bigotry, ignorance and blind hatred so that we may learn to accept each other for our differences. We can agree to disagree. Having a difference in opinion is not worth fighting over; we achieve so much more when we unite on common ground.