Happy Pride Season everyone! A time to celebrate how far we’ve come, but also a time to realise how much we still need to do. The world is a beautiful place, but not every place is warm-heartedly welcoming LGBT travellers – yet. Luckily there are some changemakers out there, conquering the world with love. We are on a quest to connect with these heroes and have them tell their story. First up: Nomadic Boys Seby & Stefan!
In three words
Seby: geeky, loyal, shy
Stefan: positive, disciplined, extrovert
Together: exciting, satisfying, trusting
The Nomadic Boys are Sebastien and Stefan. Originally French and Greek, they met in London, but are now citizens of the world. From 2014 they have been travelling all around the world and covered almost all of Asia, Latin America and Europe. They showcase the beauty of travelling and do not shy away from anti-LGBT legislation. Everywhere they go, they connect with the local gay community and spread nothing but love all around through their blog NomadicBoys.com.
Thank you for letting us interview you! Let’s dive into it!
Why do you travel? You choose to travel to countries that aren’t always welcoming LGBT people, what’s in it for you?
We absolutely love connecting with other people from completely different backgrounds to ours. We used to be Couchsurfing hosts in our flat in London and always enjoyed the exchange of knowledge and culture with the people we hosted. Now as travellers we get to experience that as well.
We think it’s important for LGBTQ travellers to support all our fellow brothers and sisters around the world. For example, just because the Russian government is so homophobic, boycotting the country entirely is only going to harm those few LGBTQ friendly businesses who more than ever need our help and support, as well as the local LGBTQ locals. Getting out there is far more productive than boycotting them completely!
What kind of traveller are you? What is important to you while travelling?
We are slow travellers. We like to spend long periods of time in each destination we visit to allow us to get more out of it, make local friends and experience it differently than if we were to just pass through it.
What’s your favourite cuisine?
Check out their Japanese recipes!
Have you travelled (solo) before you met each other?
Yes. Stefan did a big trip by himself in Latin America before he qualified as a lawyer, and Seb left France many years ago and travelled around the UK before settling down in London where he met Stefan in 2009.
Who inspires you and why?
For Stefan, it was Jodi of Legal Nomads. Around 2012 when we decided we wanted to quit our 9-5 corporate jobs in London for a new life, Stefan was researching online what other former lawyers had done. He was initially looking for ideas for teaching English online and stumbled on Jodi of Legal Nomads, and voila, we discovered the online world of travel blogging.
Have you always wanted to become an ambassador for gay travel? How did Nomadic Boys develop over time?
Initially, our travels started as a 1-year sabbatical in Asia, which turned into an 18 months trip. Our blog at the time was more as a place for Stefan to record the recipes we picked up along the way, and also to have a story to go with our photos to show off to our family. Around 1 year in, we saw traffic starting to increase a lot and we realised we could make something of it and use that as a way to fund a new lifestyle.
How do you go about travelling to countries with anti-LGBT laws regarding social media/your blog? Have you ever wanted to take it down temporarily because of safety?
Whilst we think it’s important to visit countries with homophobic laws, obviously, safety is paramount. In Asia before visiting very Muslim countries like Malaysia and Indonesia, we were terrified about our very gay online presence – what if for the sake of the argument, there was an issue at immigration for whatever reasons, and they start digging to find out more about us online – would we be arrested for being gay? This was a genuine worry. So before visiting Muslim countries, we try to remove “gay” from our blog description and keep it more blurred. Brunei has extreme Sharia Law in place, and as much as we wanted to visit, we chose not to.
What are your roles in your blogging business? Do you have roles or do you do everything together? Who picks the destinations/writes emails/does social media/etc.?
We have over the years developed very clear roles. Seb’s background is SEO and website development, so he is our IT/SEO guru. Seb also loves planning, so he does all our Nomadic Boys planning when we travel. Seb also loves videos, so does all our video editing.
Stefan does all our written content and editing and deals with all correspondence that comes in. He also manages our social media channels. Stefan loves photography, so he does all our photography, and post editing.
What is the biggest struggle of being gay travel bloggers?
The main difficulty we face is finding the time to do all the things we want. Even though we are two working on the blog it’s always finding a balance between taking on projects and finding the time to do the work, and other work that needs to be done on the blog.
What’s the most fun thing you guys do together (outside the bedroom ?)?
Well you can also do it outside, it doesn’t have to be restricted to the bedroom ?
We love cooking together and making the time to do fun things like playing cards. Now that we’re living in Cyprus, one popular game played locally is Tavli (backgammon). Stefan grew up with this in his Greek family, so is a pro, and is teaching Seb all the tricks. Also, we make a point of having a break at around sunset every day for a quick “golden hour” – our balcony in Cyprus is west facing so we get an awesome sunset view.
What will the future bring?
Cyprus is our new home base for the next few years, which is great for Stefan to get more in touch with his roots, and Seb to learn more about Seb’s background and family. We will continue doing trips as Nomadic Boys of course, especially to more European destinations.
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