Liebster Award EN

 In Introduction

It was early November even before my blog went “live” that I was nominated for a Liebster award by Vetexbart. The Liebster award has its origin in Germany and is a way of putting newbie bloggers in the spotlight.

By means of a short questionnaire made up by the person who nominates you, you get to know the person behind the new blog. So here are my answers to the questions I received from Vetexbart.

1 – If you would want to live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I fell in love with Malaysia and Borneo as these were 2 destinations on my first ever far away trip, so the city that comes to mind is Kuala Lumpur. It’s a mix of cultural influences, people speak good English, life is relatively cheap, there’s a good healthcare system and the weather is good all year round. So I would be asked to migrate tomorrow, I’d leave in a blink of eye!

2 – How do you pick your next travel destination?

Most of the times a city trip is a spontaneous decision, or my interest is raised after reading some travel blogs about far away destinations. I will then start checking my loyalty program accounts so see what air miles or hotel points I have available to finance the trip. In case this doesn’t work out I will check for the cheapest way to get there.

3 – What is your best (most fun) travel experience so far?

Most definitely the Black Moon party on Koh Phangan island! Everyone knows or as heard of the insane Full Moon beach parties on the island, where the crowds are huge and everybody is drunk and swarming over the beach until the early hours of the morning. A couple of years ago I had the chance to experience the more intimate Black Moon party which is held somewhere on a location in the jungle. Even the hotel staff came along and made sure that everybody got back safely to the hotel.

4 – What was your worst experience like?

Climbing Mount Kinabalu in Borneo in 2011 when the hike started at sea level with sunny weather but after an hour it turned into torrential rain all the way up to the Laban Rata cabin at an elevation of 3000 meters. Soaked and exhausted I got the news that there was no hot water and the heating would only be on for 1 hour that night! Not what you need when you need to get up the next morning at 2am to leave for the summit at 4100 meters. It was tough experience but I eventually made it.

5 – What else do you like/do besides travelling and blogging?

After 17 years of mountainbiking and road cycling, I’m taking it easier these days and enjoy life more. I love a good glass of whisky, but I don’t have a huge collection at home. I buy a good bottle every now and then and treat it as liquid gold. I work as a system administrator so I like to stay up to date with the latest developments in technology. Besides that I’m a big fan of TV shows like Homeland and House Of Cards.

6 – Which place should every traveller visit at least once in his/her life?

Most likely everyone is expecting me to name a place in Asia, but actually I’m recommending a place closer to home. To this day I still remember going to Asti (in the Italian region of Piemonte) when I was younger. It has some beautiful surroundings, very friendly people and some of the best food I’ve ever eaten. Oh and make sure to taste the Ricadonna spumante!

7 – If you could pick any movie to watch during a longhaul flight, which one would it be?

Oh that’s a tough one as I watch a lot of movies, but one that would really fit the travel theme is Up In The Air with George Clooney. Being a miles and points hoarder I always get a big grin on my face when the main character has to explain how the whole miles thing works.

8 – Where did you go to on your very first trip?

If I can remember correctly my first trip abroad was to Clervaux (Luxemburg) going camping with my parents. The years after we went further South with a tent or trailer. Everything seemed like a big adventure back then.

9 – Which international kitchen do you love?

Which one don’t I like? Haha, I love good food! It ranges from Italian (antipasti), French (so much good cheese), Greek (mezze and lamb with lots of garlic) and Spanish (tapas) to Chinese (dimsum!), Indian (tosai or a spicy vindaloo), Japanese (sushi), Korean (BBQ) and Malaysian (roti canai). So it’s hard for me to pick one and thinking about all this delicious food makes me hungry…

10 – Why did you start your blog?

Till June this year I was writing for a Dutch frequent flyer website but I wasn’t happy with the way things were handled and the way the site was managed so I decided to quit. As I love to write I was soon looking for an alternative and a couple months later I decided to start Lionell Travels which allows me to do my own thing.

11 – Which trips do you have planned?

I have a citytrip planned this coming weekend but I’m not revealing yet where I’m going as it’s not a destination that everyone would pick for a weekend. You’ll be able to read more about this during the coming days. I have some time off work during the first week of December but I don’t have anything booked or planned yet. Most likely I will check for a last minute trip to somewhere, destination unknown.

I would like to nominate the following people for a Liebster award:

Wesley Op Reis

Wanderer’s Blues



I have come up with the following questions:

  1. What’s the meaning of your blog name?
  2. Who do you like to reach and what do you want to achieve with your blog?
  3. What do you do for a living?
  4. How do you persuade a foreign tourist to visit your hometown?
  5. What’s the most crazy thing you ever experienced during a trip?
  6. What is your favorite continent to visit?
  7. Which country would you never want to visit and why?
  8. Which food from your own country would you miss the most when being abroad for a long time?
  9. Which destination do your recommend for someone who has never been abroad?
  10. Which country is ranked the highest on your “bucket list”?
  11. Where is your next trip taking you?

I hope you will accept this award nomination and I’m looking forward to your answers!

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