Video: Randy Pausch Last Lecture- Achieving Your Childhood Dreams

In honor of the late Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch, who recently passed away due to terminal cancer, I thought that I would share his “Last Lecture Speech” about living your childhood dreams.

Pausch talked about his lessons learned and gave advice to students on how to achieve their own career and personal goals.

I encourage you all to set aside an hour or so to watch this very inspiring video, which has become an internet sensation.


Life is short. Make the most of it!

Video: Farmer Builds Redneck Stonehenge in the USA!

Been wanting to head to England to see the famous Stonehenge? Well now you can head to UTAH to see a copycat of Stonehenge- Redneck style!

Backpacker Loses 40 lbs. Backpacking Europe!

Thought that I would throw in a little bit of an appetizer before you go on to the meat and potatoes of this post.

My first trip to Europe was for 4 weeks with a 30 lb+ backpack. I walked like there’s no tomorrow and enjoyed this kind of forced natural exercise and to my amazement I had surprisingly lost 9 lbs!

Not bad, right? Turns out that ain’t no thing but a chicken wing.

Read Joey’s incredible story:

From sedentary to six km in one easy trip

We have mentioned (and many of us have experienced) the unintended consequence of losing weight while traveling. Between walking 5k-15km a day every day and having hit and miss meals I dropped about 40 pounds (18kg) over the course of 5 months in Europe.

When I came back home, I had a bit of deja vu. The same thing happened to me in 2006, and like with many people I quickly put the weight back on. By 2007 I was back to normal so I was determined to make this time different.

I went to a tread mill and walked a km, then said, what the heck let’s see if by losing weight I am able to run at 5mph for a while. In the past, I could get to 0.25 miles with some ease, but with 0.5miles I would have my tongue hanging out ready to throw up. Yet that day, I ended up running almost 2 miles (I stopped briefly midway to show my sister how to use the treadmill) continuously.

Long story short, I have been upping my distance every week, and I am at 4 miles (6.4km). A feat I have NEVER been able to do in my life. It is like I am a really lame superhero who just discovered a new power.

Anyway, I am going to run a 5k in Feb locally to check off an item on my life todo list. To traveling and the improvement of mind, body and spirit that comes with it


Read the original post and replies on Joey’s amazing side benefit of backpacking Europe!

Have you lost weight while traveling? How much?

Films that Inspire You Travel

If you’re planning on hitting the road to satisfy your wander lust, you’ve most likely got your radar on to any and all things around you that will keep you pumped and inspired to stay focus on your travel goals.

Aside from surfing the ocean of travel related internet sites and the countless updated versions of the Lonely Planet and Rick Steves guide books, then next obvious answer is movies.

Therein lies the question: “What are the films that inspire you to travel?”

One of our TravelPUNK community members, AKguacamole, started a thread on this very subject.

She asks:

” While I’m trying to figure out which part of the world is calling me next, I love any sort of inspiration. There are so many great films out there that can inspire us, and I would like to see more!
What are some truly awesome travel movies?

I was inspired by, the classic movie of course, The Beach, and more recently the Darjeeling Limited has moved to the top of my list. “

There are some good films listed in response to this thread so click here to read them!

So what films inspire you to travel? Please add your comments here or register for free on our message boards to reply!

Video: Tapas in Spain

Tapas in general is just a little tasty snack that you can get at any bar or cafe in Spain.

Tapas can be anything. From a little plate of olive, nuts, chips, or cheese to little slices of bread topped off with something creative that the bartender or chef cooked up.

You normally get a free tapas with every beer you order in any bar or cafe. They say that’s why the Spanish are not overweight (in general) because they’re always eating these little tiny meals throughout the day and not three big huge meals that Americans usually eat.

Experience Spain

The best way way to experience Spain is to perhaps do a local Madrid or Barcelona food tour.

If you’re on a time schedule and have a little wiggle room in your budget, you might want to consider doing a local food tour. They’ll teach you about some of  the local hotspots and give you a great taste of what Spain has to offer with their local traditional, yet creative food scene.

Some tapas places are fancier than others as modern days chefs are looking to add there creative touch to the traditional tapas.

Here’s a video showcasing some tapas from Spain.

Here’s another video where you can see some creative tapas.

Click for more info on Spain

Video: Introduction to Hostels

Here’s a simple video tour of a hostel in Prague. It’s a good introduction for those who do not have any experience in staying at hostels.   

Book hostels all over Europe with no booking fees- click here.

Filmed by HunterinEurope (see Youtube) who is backpacking Europe for 11 weeks this summer.

Video: Americans Watching Full Eclipse in Siberia

This is crazy footage of some Americans watching and filming the Siberian RARE total eclipse. You can see daylight literally turned into pitch black in a few seconds!

It’s absolutely wild!

Did you get to experience this rare total eclipse live?

Can’t Make it to Siberia to See the Rare Total Solar Eclipse?

If you won’t be in Novosibirsk, Russia, to view the rare total eclipse tomorrow (Aug. 1st), you’re in luck! will be broadcasting the eclipse via Internet.

They will be planning to install two webcams: one that will look exactly on the sun through special telephoto device, and the other will broadcast a city’s center view.

The broadcasting will start 1/08 at 16:00 UTC+7 (09:00 GMT)

Click here to watch it tomorrow

Novosibirsk is the third largest city in Russia after Moscow and Saint-Petersburg. It is also the youngest city to exceed the population of a million citizens, being founded in 1893.

Backpacking Moscow? Get FREE Accommodations for…

If you’re backpacking to Moscow anytime soon, a member of our community, Lizz, has posted details about how you can get free accommodations at a nunnery for the price of 60 minutes of “helping around.”

There are a few simple rules that you must abide by, but they are nominal compared to what you’re getting in return. Imagine the savings and the priceless experience!

You’ll definitely have some great photo opp’s and, of course, perhaps a life altering experience.

For more information and to see the simple set of rules you must abide by, see this post.

Also, we’d like to thank our friends over at for arranging this one of a kind offer with Sister G from Moscow.

Backpacking Europe for the First Time or Backpacking Solo? Got Goosebumps?

I saw these videos the other day and they reminded me of when I went backpacking Europe solo for the first time. I was not only scared, but petrified as I had never been out of the country on my own before.

Listening to the guy at the end of the second video talk about why it’s a difficult jump is a lot like why it’s difficult going backpacking for the first time, especially solo (ie…it’s dark, it’s difficult, no reference points…).

Traveling solo for the first time to land that you’ve never set foot on is like walking in the dark where you can’t see anything to use as a reference point.

At the end of the day, he had to have faith that he will be successful no matter what, and so must you.

I wasn’t fluent in any languages, booking hostels online wasn’t the method back then, and the number of websites offering information on it were few and far between.

In essence, I was taking a leap of faith. Faith that I will come back a new person. Faith that I will come back enlightened with new perspectives in life. Faith that I will grow on many levels spiritually, mentally, culturally, emotionally, even physically. Faith that I will make it through with flying colors.

So that’s what I did. As scared crapless as I was, I took a leap of faith, bought my round trip ticket to Paris and had 5 weeks to prepare, and the rest is TravelPUNK history.

Having faith that I WILL MAKE IT HAPPEN in every aspect: from buying the plane ticket, traveling on the fly, meeting the right people, integrating as much as I could, making myself open and available to whatever came my way, and having faith that by keeping alert I will protect myself from whatever harm or theft that could potentially come my way, I KNEW that I would be juuuuust fine.

It’s normal to get goosebumps and be scared on your first trip, especially going solo, but have faith, my friends. You’ll growth 1,000 times from this experience.

Has having faith helped you?