A nomad is no better than a backpacker or conventional tourist. But maybe a bit different… Read PedroL’s interesting reflection on our nomad lifestyles. Latinamerikaliv is so happy to have PedroL as a guest blogger this week!

busan south korea alexandra

By PedroL:

Over my last journey years, I’ve realised something about myself: I’m not a tourist neither a traveller, I am a nomad. And what makes the difference between all of these characters?

bangkok alexandra

(In Bangkok, Thailand)

I believe a tourist has a light connection to the travelling activity, using it only for recreation to recharge himself from work (or herself, but for simplicity I’ll refer to a “him”). A traveller, on the other hand, is kind of a tourist upgrade: for him a trip is an event.

According to my experience, the traveller is someone dedicated to his travels but who does not abdicate the confort of home. A traveller loves the process: before the trip, when he sets up everything; the trip itself; and the pos trip, to go back and share his experience with family, friends, co-workers, etc…

And then comes the nomad, the upgrade of the upgrade. In my opinion, a nomad is someone interested in living in other countries, absorbing local cultures and dedicated to learn in situs. His home is the road. He can go everywhere because he is the all-terrain traveller. He doesn’t have many objects because he doesn’t need to. On the contrary, he has a lot of time to dedicate to a place.

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(In the streets of Sarajevo, Bosnia)

When I charactize myself as a nomad, it wasn’t something I decided one day. There was also a process: as every newly graduate, I started to work, but monotony was not for me. As I needed something new, I quit and went to volunteer in the Balkans.

For 6 months, I had the chance to live in Skopje, Macedonia, and work in a youth center. It was one the best experiences in my life: together with other fellow europeans I helped and learned in a different environment. Everyday was a challenge: new flavours, new faces, new languages, new places.

youth center estelle

(At the youth center in Skopje, Macedonia)

When I went back home to Lisbon, the sunny Portuguese capital, I realised how I had evolved. As I wrote before, monotony is not for me and to return was to see that eveything and everyone around were the same. I needed new challenges. So I decided to go abroad again. But first I needed to work: for some time I worked as night receptionist in a hostel in the city center of Lisbon. Such a lovely job!


Finally all conditions were created for me to go abroad again. Together with my girlfriend, last October I moved to Riga, the cold capital of Latvia. Although Latvia is in Europe and related to Portugal, I find the country even a lot more distinct than Argentina. So far, I’m loving it. Everyday is a challenge: the weather, the people, the language, the food. I’m investing my time in doing what I like the most: living in a new culture and writing about it.

Riga by Alexandra

A nomad is not better than a traveller or a tourist. In fact, a happy tourist is better than a sad nomad. Over the last years, I was lucky enough to listen myself. And there’s one lesson that I learned from being on the road: the importance of discovering what makes you happy. Find it out and then plunge in it. In here or in there. About me, I know I will be somewhere. No matter where.

Latinamerika thanks PedroL for his collaboration!
Check out PedroL’s awesome travel blog here: worldwidepedrol.com