Meet our team of fantastic ambassadors…

Melanie Swan: Soul Seeker Ambassador

Melanie is SEA Backpacker’s ‘Soul Seekers Ambassador’ as she helps people out in the clichéd, but ever so true, backpacker quest of ‘finding themselves’. She left England four years ago and gave herself the challenge – could she travel AND work? In Melanie’s words, ‘the road has taken many twists and turns and I had some strong lessons to learn as I further understood and lived the Spiritual Path I’m on. And the answer is yes. I can do it! I now work as I travel – not only that, but I do the work I love!’ Melanie hopes to inspire and support people around the world to shed the shackles of conditioning, connect with their purpose and create a life that makes their heart sing. Read Melanie’s article – ‘Facing the great unknown – Travel & Stepping out of your Comfort Zone’.

Melanie Swan

Amy Lou: Northern Thailand Expert

Amy is currently living in Chiang Mai and pursuing her dream to be a travel writer. She writes a blog ‘My Chiang Mai Everything’ which is a celebration of the city she loves. You can use the blog to discover fantastic camping spots, cooking schools, motorbike routes, hiking trails, art galleries, restaurants, accommodation, coffee shops and, just, so much more. Her passions in life are travel, writing, social media and photography and her free time is dedicated to mountain motorbiking, laughing with my boyfriend and attempting to lure cats into her home. Forest trails, fireflies, spas, heavy rock gigs and boutique coffee shops are all lovely too. Check out Amy’s article about a jewellery workshop she attended recently in Chiang Mai.

Amy Burbridge

Laura Davies: All Round Dogsbody (In her own words)

The original South East Asia Backpacker intern, Laura has been working with the magazine for over 5 years on and off. From day one, arriving in Thailand and being escorted to her accommodation on the back of a temperamental motorbike named ‘The Joker’, Laura fit in with the team marvellously! With a degree in Geography, experience in Travel PR and a self taught graphic designer, Laura is a jack of all trades and has helped the magazine in so many ways from marketing to creative. Laura is currently living in London and helping to proof read and design the front cover for ‘SEA Backpacker The Story’ (a book about the creation of SEA Backpacker) – Coming Soon! Read one of Laura’s articles ‘The Death of the Postcard’ – or check out more of Laura’s work on her website.

Zip Wiring

Chase Berenson: Alternative Travel Reporter

After six years of cold weather, Chase moved from Alaska to Bangkok to work and explore South East Asia. Chase has an insatiable curiosity about the world, in particular, Southeast Asia because of the geographic and cultural diversity (and amazing people!) in the region and along with his girlfriend, Charla (also an SEA Backpacker Ambassador), has completed some epic travel adventures – for example, driving a car from London to Mongolia in the crazy Mongol Rally! Chase is currently taking a break from travel living in the US, but is still providing us with tons of travel inspiration from his recent adventures and saving up for his next trip! In his travel writing, Chase likes to seek out the unusual – such as this article about Thailand’s craze for football!


Samantha Starling: Pole Dancing Flashpacker!

Samantha has loved travelling since she was a kid in the airport excited for the family holiday! Now in her 20 somethings – that feeling hasn’t changed! In her own words ‘The knowing that you’re off to explore somewhere new gets me every time. Travelling South East Asia is magical experience, and with the help of SEA Backpacker Mag I never missed a local festival, let alone a destination! Some would call it flash packing, but I call it roughing it… in a private room!’ Samantha is currently living in Australia and taking trips to South East Asia when she can. Just returned back from your backpacking adventure? Here, Samantha tells us how to defeat post-backpacking blues!


Ben Turland: The Foodie!

Ben has travelled around South East Asia a few times in the last few years, drawn back by the great food, culture and cheap lifestyle. Recently wed, he now takes his travel slow, travelling with his wife and his camera by his side, trying to taste, understand and document local food as much as possible. When he’s not busy eating; he likes afternoon naps, adventures and diving which he hopes to do professionally, one day. Read Ben’s guide to one of his favourite spots, Pankgor Malaysia.


Charla Allyn Hughes: Diving and Yoga Diva

Charla really got into backpacking while studying in Bologna, Italy, during University. She is currently living with her boyfriend Chase in the US and exploring her own backyard after many years working and living in South East Asia – in Koh Chang, Bali and Koh Phi Phi. (Yes – she loves the beach!) Charla’s jobs ranged from Dive Instructor to Flyer girl outside bars. Last year she fell in love with Bali for a second time at the Bali Spirit Festival, where she fulfilled one of her lifetime goals of participating in a full Bollywood sequence with a couple hundred other dancers! Read Charla’s guide on the island of Koh Chang, Thailand where she used to call home.

Charla Hughes

NOMADasaurus: The Overland Travel Experts

Jarryd and Alesha are couple of young Australians who are addicted to adventure travel. They’ve been exploring the world together for over 6 years, and are currently travelling overland from Thailand to South Africa, without using any air transportation! Having completed 14 months in South East Asia, and riding motorbikes for 10 of those months, they are currently in Turkmenistan and making their way to Europe! The goal of their blog, NOMADasaurus is to promote sustainable, long-term adventure travel across the globe. Check out this article written by Alesha about why backpackers should show some respect! Or this guide, written by Jazza, to beautiful Nong Khiaw in mountainous northern Laos.


Two Monkeys Travel: Independent Travel Specialists

As we’re developing our second online magazine, South America Backpacker, we have a team of ambassadors who are currently exploring the region and bringing us lots of great info to the latin continent! Meet Jon and Kach, of Two Monkeys Travel. The adventurous couple, from the Philippines and the UK, have been travelling and working for 18 months; starting in South East Asia, via India to South America. The Two Monkeys decided to make traveling a lifestyle, something truly sustainable, and to support this choice, they work, volunteer, work exchange and even have their very own Yoga and Healing Massage business. Check out their article over on the South America Backpacker website – The cheapest DIY Trip to Machu Picchu! You can follow the Monkeys on Facebook or check out their blog.


Nina Ragusa: Kick Ass Long Term Travel Goddess

Nina Ragusa is the intrepid soul behind Where in the World is Nina? This American wildflower shares her world explorations and methods of living the travel lifestyle – without fluffing the details. You can expect wit and sarcasm dashed between REAL travel information and adventurous stories. Nina is a professional beach bum, a hula hooper, and revels in getting lost on purpose. Tag along to see how to travel and live abroad forever fabulously, rather than frivolously. Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram. Read Nina’s first article ‘Can you make a life of long-term travel work? Tips on working abroad’ here.


The Broke Backpacker: Budget Expert Ambassador

Meet Will Hatton, AKA The Broke Backpacker. Will has the dubious honour of being one of the poorest travellers you’re ever likely to meet! When it comes to adventuring, Will’s done it all, he’s crashed motorbikes, been scammed in India, hospitalised in Costa Rica, robbed at knife point in Nepal and molested by an overly friendly dog in Laos. It’s not all doom and gloom though, Will has seen and experienced some of the stuff he used to believe only existed in movies. He’s watched Burmese sunsets with crimson robed monks, explored flooded caves with a candle, worked for the Vietnamese Mafia (don’t ask!) and hitch-hiked from England to Africa. He launched his website in August 2014 to help inspire others to quit their jobs and hit the road. You can follow Will’s adventures on Facebook and Twitter @wandering_will. Read Will’s article over at South America Backpacker for tips on how to make money selling souvenirs from your travels. (It’s legal don’t worry!)


Goats on the Road: Travel Lifestyle Gurus

Nick and Dariece of Goats on the Road are a Canadian couple who have found many ways to Turn their Travels into a Lifestyle! They are location independent and work from their computers in many exotic locations worldwide – living the “laptop lifestyle”. They’ve chosen this unconventional way of life and are completely stress-free, happy and alive – mo nine-to-fives, no boss, no planning for retirement, no white picket fence, no mortgage and no debt. The Goats have recently been living in Grenada where they’ve been house-sitting (a savvy traveller’s best kept secret!) for seven months in paradise – and have just hit the road again for their next batch of travelling to who knows where!? Check out their article ‘5 Off the Beaten Track Experiences to have in Southeast Asia.’


Alana Morgan: Thailand Culture Connoisseur

Alana is an old friend of SEA Backpacker Magazine, who would wander by our office in Chiang Mai and coax us outside for a fruit shake in the sun (or a large beer!). Alana has always been fascinated by other cultures, places, traditions, languages and people. She loves piecing a new place together, appreciating what makes it special and seeing how different people live their lives. For the past three years, Chiang Mai, Thailand has been Alana’s home and the place where she has lived on my own for the first time, learned to ride a motorbike, taught English, began freelancing, made some incredible relationships and explored Southeast Asia from. Her blog, Paper Planes is a travel lifestyle blog looking at the daily life of a place – what the people, eat, drink, do, wear. Check out Alana’s article ’10 Alternative and Free Things to Do in Chiang Mai.’


Adventure in You: Inspiring Travel Go-Getters and Trip Reviewers!

Anna and Tom of travel website, Adventure in You met whilst on the road and continued to travel together and create their online travel business which after just six months is now helping to support their amazing lifestyles. Together, they’re on a mission to travel around from one country to the next as they focus writing about Adventure, Food, and Local Living. Alongside this, they also want to promote local living because they feel that you only truly experience a place if you get to live locally and immerse yourself in their culture. Their Wandergive Project helps travellers to give something back as they travel. You can follow the couple’s travels on their Facebook and read the recent interview with Anna and Tom on our website here.

Trip reviews

Think you got what it takes to join the team? Find out more info here!