VOYAGERS OF THE WORLD

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Jared Kreiss

A seasoned explorer and traveler, shares his incredible journey that began in the scenic landscapes of New Zealand. From early childhood hikes with his father to solo expeditions around the globe, Jared's life is a testament to the power of adventure in shaping one's worldview.

What inspired you to begin your journey as an adventurer, and how has it shaped who you are today?

I think part of the inspiration goes back to my childhood. Growing up in New Zealand, I was exposed to a rather adventurous and nomadic upbringing. Dad used to take us on overnight hiking trips to relatively remote areas as early as 5-6 years old. I would often wander off from home on bike or foot and be gone for hours exploring where we lived just to entertain myself. Exposure to travel and adventures at a young age definitely carried through to my adulthood and has played a big impact on who I have become today. I have always chosen experiences over any monetary gains. Seeing new places, meeting new people, and living outside of the ‘norm’ has definitely given me a wider world view and open perspective.

Can you share a pivotal moment from your travels that changed your perspective on life or the world around you?

I wouldn’t say there was a moment in particular that was pivotal, but I think for me, traveling outside of the U.S. has really allowed me to see that life doesn’t always have to be so complicated or stressful. A lot of people and cultures outside of the U.S seem to be content with the simple and humble lives they live. It feels as if people in the U.S are always in competition and that it’s often about what job you do, how much you make and your social status that defines who you are. I definitely feel that way here…and that’s a lot of stress and pressure. Life doesn’t have to be so complicated or in such competition. Embrace community and get back to the simple things.

What challenges have you faced during your adventures, and how have you overcome them?

I think the biggest thing is just knowing that nothing really ever goes to plan. The best thing to do is just trying to accept that and embrace the journey.

Describe a place or experience from your adventures that left a lasting impression on you. Why was it so impactful?

I would have to say my trip to Costa Rica back in 2021 was probably the most memorable. The people there were incredibly kind and humble. Welcoming us as if we were family. I crashed my drone on a steep embankment while there and one of the locals literally risked his life and abseiled down the side of a cliff with a makeshift rope in an attempt to retrieve my drone. He did all of this for a stranger. That to me spoke volumes about the humility of the people and culture there.

What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their own adventure or exploration journey?

My advice would be: Don’t feel like you have to book a plane ticket to the other side of the world to have an epic adventure. Chances are there is so much to see and explore right in your backyard. Get out there and see what you can find, you might be surprised.

How do you document your travels, and what stories are you most excited to share with others?

Mostly through photos and videos. I am usually most excited to share stories on how I capture some of my most challenging and rewarding photographs. I also love sharing encounters of kindness and compassion such as the story of the local in Costa Rica rescuing my drone.