The Truth behind Backpacking 

A Wandering Memory is specifically focused and purposely designed to help and inspire those who wish to travel. Travel to us is part of our very being, we love to explore, learn and create memories throughout the globe. As a traveler, we have an ethic of sharing, if it’s sharing a night out, a meal, car journey or sharing our experience, our insight and our inspiration.

Through following A Wandering Memory you will see photos that encapsulate the world’s beauty, first hand stories of mind-blowing experiences and hopefully inspiration to visit some of the most incredible places in the world.

Through A Wandering Memory and other similar blogs you will be told how travel is the most worthwhile activity you could ever do, that it changes you, that you can find yourself, that it is a 24 hour party and nothing but fun. We galvanise and somewhat glamourise the experience itself  – inadvertently we sell the dream.

All of this is accurate to a degree, however many people don’t realise that there is a lot more to backpacking than this.

Backpacking takes a huge amount of determination, resourcefulness and dedication. A life-changing trip requires thought, planning and most of all funding. The truth is that travelling can be expensive, with accommodation, food and transport all aspects of daily contention. It is always a good idea to have some funds saved, in order to fall back on during your trip. Personally I worked 2 jobs, 7 days a week for 18 months in order to fund my first trip, I booked some tours and flights in advance just to make sure I had a plan although I didn’t have to follow it religiously.

The travel element itself can be a testing experience, especially backpacking for a long period of time. You may experience a world of emotions you would never associate with travel. Some emotions you may not have any experience of at all. These emotions are also linked into an infinite number of scenarios, some negative, some positive, however you will face these without your true support network – without your family, long-term friends and confidants.

Unfortunately we found that backpacking with friends and loved ones can be even more difficult and have unfortunately witnessed the breakdown of many relationships. Such experiences can be so overwhelming and detrimental that a person’s experience and even health can be truly affected.


Whilst backpacking in Sydney Australia, a fellow traveler split with his partner, got ‘depressed’, drunk himself into a state where he decided to end his own life by jumping  out of his hostel window. I know it’s unbelievable, but it’s true. Although this is an extreme example it is always something to be wary of.

The truth is backpacking can be demanding, it can be stressful and is more challenging than many let on.

If you are backpacking, or thinking of backpacking and want to get in touch we are more than happy to chat.

I will admit that some of us are lucky and don’t face the challenges and difficulties during backpacking. Some travelers have trust-funds, family money and some of us just cruise by without a care in the world… ‘Winging it’ is a concept I would love to adopt, and in some cases have – but in all honesty I prefer having at least the bare bones of a plan.


In our next post we will share a few examples of our experiences with specific emotions and scenarios.




7 thoughts on “The Truth behind Backpacking 

  1. This is a really great post guys! I was surprised by the range of emotions solo backpacking long-term raised and watched many other travellers struggle with this. Thanks for sharing your experiences and raising the topic for others to read 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Shannon. Thank you for the comment it is appreciated. Yes I do feel every now and again that we sell the dream but have to be honest and fair. It’s not all fun and games but is so impactful that it’s worth every minute. Please feel free to share so we can get the message out there

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The backpacking days are long over for me but it’s definitely an experience that opens you up to the world and other people and a whole range of experiences, both good and bad. Great post David.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Miriam. Thank you… your backpacking days are not over you are always having some sort of adventure. What I really wanted to try and do is just make it clear that although it is amazing and clearly the defining part of many of us. It is not all fun and games… there is a lot of challenges and hard work that must be overcome also. I remember feeling very lonely at times and also lost! I’ll cover that is the next segment to…

      Liked by 1 person

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