Strolling side-by-side with a Komodo dragon through the jungles of Indonesia's Komodo Island, surfing the waves off Australia's most beautiful shores and soaring over the magical temples of Bagan in Myanmar in a hot-air balloon – these are the stuff of World travel dreams are made.
And a little insight into the life of Nick Martin. Born in Franconia, he has been traveling the world for twelve years now - always ready for the next adventure. The 36-year-old has traveled to well over 70 countries over the years and has lived in Australia, Ecuador, New Zealand, Switzerland and Fiji for a while.
Nick Martin likes to call himself an adventurer, he has stuck his toes in the sand of numerous beaches on every continent and calls people from all over the world his friends. He leads a life that many people only dare to dream of.
According to a representative study commissioned by the private lottery provider Lottoland, every third German dreams of traveling more. A representative survey by the opinion research institute YouGov on behalf of Eurojackpot came to a similar conclusion.
According to this, 64 percent of those surveyed would realize themselves in their free time if they had enough time and money for it - two thirds of them when travelling.
"Due to the corona pandemic and the associated temporary travel and contact restrictions, the desire to travel and see more of the world has certainly become much stronger recently," said Axel Weber, spokesman for Eurojackpot at the presentation of the study.
A theory that Nick Martin also agrees with. But the travel expert is also observing a completely different current development in the travel world: "Since the beginning of the corona pandemic, there have definitely been more and more digital nomads, i.e. people who do their job from anywhere," he tells the star at a virtual meeting during a short stopover in Germany.
Of course, there are still the classic package tourists who flock south in summer. Overall, however, the appreciation for travel has increased. "I know so many who now want to catch up on their trip around the world," says Martin.
The good news: Those who are in the starting blocks and want to quench their wanderlust are faced with more and more opportunities. For example in Australia. Before the outbreak of the pandemic, the country was considered a real backpacker's paradise. The first lockdown put an end to backpacking.
The problem: Entire sectors of the economy in the country are based on backpackers who are willing to work. Backpackers can now extend their work and travel visa for up to three years. Originally, after two years, the backpackers said: Hoo roo, Australia!
Mexico, Fuerteventura, Costa Rica - this is how Nick Martin's bucket list reads during the corona pandemic. During a short stay in Germany, the adventurer then noticed an uncomfortable feeling in his back.
After a few examinations by the doctor, he came home with the diagnosis of a herniated disc – and stayed for months. "During this time, my biggest journey was from the sofa to bed," Martin recalls.
In February 2022, the liberation came: The physiotherapy had an effect, the back pain is history. Nick Martin's first act? Off to the airport and off to the Dominican Republic. "I wanted to see if I could travel again. Fortunately, the answer was yes!"
Twelve years ago, Nick Martin probably wouldn't have thought that even a herniated disc wouldn't stop him from discovering the world. Back then, there wasn't much to see of the adventurer that was in him: technical high school diploma, community service, training, good salary and company car - a perfectly normal CV. Until then he was drawn into the distance. The rest is history.
A story that theoretically other people could write. If it weren't for that little word "But". I would like to go on a trip around the world, but I don't have enough money; but then what are other people supposed to think; but I'm afraid of being overwhelmed with it.
Nick Martin knows many arguments that keep us from traveling. "Many only get their information from news about world events. This gives them a bad image of some countries." The world is much friendlier than you think.
The fun-loving Franconian loves to travel, even when he's not out and about in the world. You can now read about his adventures in two books or let him tell you the story himself when he is on the road as a speaker again.
If you are dreaming of a trip around the world, you can also enroll in the Travel University. However, this has little to do with a classic course of study. The whole thing is divided into bachelor and master, but more to give the content a structure.
The only thing that reminds you of a real degree: the content builds on one another. In the bachelor's degree, participants learn what minimum they need for a trip around the world, how to finance their dream and what is important when planning.
In the Master's it becomes more individual: It's about traveling with chronic illnesses, van life and digital nomadism. However, the content is not based on scientific findings, but on the experiences of Nick Martin, his partner Stefanie Oeffner and other world travelers.
Users look in vain for specific travel tips – because the tutors want to inspire their students to make their own plans. In return, the travel students get a community of like-minded people and tips for getting started with world travel for just under 100 euros.
Martin himself explains the concept as follows: "We pass on our own experience from several decades of world travel on the platform. We also like to verbally kick our ass from time to time," adds Nick Martin to the portfolio. Doubt and fear as an excuse for staying at home? None Chance.
A trip around the world without courage does not exist. If you want to get to know new cultures and perspectives, you have to be willing to leave your comfort zone. A healthy self-confidence can also help to face the challenges that await you along the way. "You also have to be willing to take off your blinders and be open to new perspectives," adds Martin. But that's easier with every new location.
Another thing you absolutely need for a trip around the world: money. But how big does my wallet have to be? According to Nick Martin, there is no general answer: "I can't just say that a trip around the world costs 23,000 euros." It always depends on the individual travel style, the route and the requirements of the traveler.
When Nick Martin talks about travel, his eyes shine, his voice gets louder, he revs up in every sense. That's contagious. And that's exactly what he wants to achieve: to inspire and motivate, to be a role model. Of course, he also gets a lot of added value from his lifestyle for himself. If you ask him about the three great lessons from twelve years of traveling around the world, he always names the same ones:
Change of scene: We are in Mauritania, the least traveled country in the world after North Korea. The landscape is characterized by dune landscapes and granite formations, two thirds of the country is covered by the Sahara. The thermometer shows 44 degrees Celsius – in the shade.
A seven kilometer long train, the Iron Train, travels through the middle of the desert at 35 kilometers an hour. It is considered the heaviest and longest train in the world. And on one of the wagons loaded with iron ore sits a young man; the whole body covered in sand dust, ski goggles and hat pulled over the face - and a big grin on his face.
The next tick on Nick Martin's bucket list. "So far I've made every trip I've ever wanted to go on," says the 36-year-old. And even if it was a dangerous trip, he doesn't want to miss a second of it. And his travel story is far from over: " I live by the principle: The only trip you regret is the one you don't take!"
Source: Nick Martin from Travel University