Photography by Karen Ng
This feature is sponsored by one of Karen’s favorite brands, RAINS.
RAINS is a Danish retailer of the highest-quality rainwear and bags. Designed for Denmark’s predictably rainy climate, RAINS strikes a perfect blend of style and comfort in all of their products, which are sold and recognized all around the world. RAINS jackets are known for their waterproof yet breathable materials thanks to their unique vented design, while RAINS backpacks’ magnetic closings and internal laptop compartment make them ideal for the modern urbanite. Get your RAINS gear shipped anywhere around the world, and read more about Karen’s beloved RAINS Mini Backpack below.
Karen Ng is a photographer based in Hong Kong. Known for her creative use of contrast and an extreme attention to detail, she captures beauty through photos all over the world.
With photography expeditions to China, Japan, Iceland, Australia, and all over Europe already under her belt in 2016, Karen’s not an easy one to keep up with. Try your best to follow her frequent movements on Instagram.
I’m Karen Ng, and this is How I Travel.
What do you love most about traveling?
So many different things! Travel is constantly bringing you new new experiences, and there’s always something unexpected happening, which motivates me to find new ways of exploring the world around me in my day-to-day life. But also meeting people from around the world and gaining exposure to new cultures makes me a better person. I don’t know who I would’ve become if I wasn’t traveling.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned through all your travels?
The world is so big and beautiful that you should always be happy with where you’re at right now! Never
stop learning and traveling – you won’t ever regret it.
How has travel changed you as a person?
You’ll never learn more about yourself until you leave your comfort zone.
I was raised in Hong Kong and moved to the UK on my own when I was 14, and it’d be an understatement to say that I struggled with the language and cultural differences there. At first I hoped someone would come to me and help me solved all of my problems, but after a while I discovered that no one will help you unless you ask for it! The beginning was tough, but it taught me my independence, something I’ve carried with me ever since.
What’s the one travel experience/story that has had the biggest impact on you?
So many stories come to mind, but if I have to choose just one, it’d be my first trip to Iceland.
It was a late December day, and a heavy snowstorm promised to interrupt our trip to the Golden Circle. With nothing to see but sheer white outside the windows of our bus, the snow was so heavy and thick that we got stuck on the edge of a mountain. Our driver said it was the heaviest snowstorm he’d ever seen! Still, with our other option being to wait out the storm and risk freezing in the bus, once we got the bus unstuck the driver decided to drive through the storm until we could reach safety. It was scary, that’s for sure!
Even though nothing truly bad happened that day, the experience showed me how quickly things can change and how short life can be. So if you want to do something, whether you’re traveling or just in everyday life, do it now – you may not get another chance!'If you want to do something, do it now - you may not get another chance!' Click To Tweet
Karen’s 8 Favorite Travel Items
A waterproof backpack is an absolute must for me when I’m traveling. Of course, since I’m always carrying my camera, lenses, and even my tripod around, a bag with enough space is important too! My RAINS Mini Backpack strikes the perfect balance to keep my equipment safe and dry.
If you haven’t noticed yet I’m basically obsessed with Canon, and I got this wonderful film camera from Brick Lane Market in London. I love how film gives out different colours and textures compare to SLRs, so I use it alongside my Canon 6D to get different effects.
I bought my Canon 6D for myself as a gift after finding my first job. It’s the first full-frame camera I’ve used, and I absolutely love it. It fuels all of my Instagram posts, but the level of detail that the camera captures shines through so much more when you print them out in large format. I really can’t imagine choosing any camera brand other than Canon – their cameras are that good!
I received this as a graduation present. It’s not an expensive pen, but it’s accompanied me through all of my most important moments. I love using this pen to write postcards to my friends (and myself!) as a reminder of where I’ve been on all my travels.
I need shoes that I can use for hiking and when it’s raining, yet still match with all of my clothing! My black Dr. Martens do the job perfectly.
It goes without saying, but I love my MacBook Pro to death. Here I am editing some photos and searching for my next destination.
How can you travel abroad without your passport!? I love looking at all the stamps I’ve collected from different countries.
I love my iPhone as a travel tool for so many reasons! It’s perfect for finding directions, making sure I’m on track of everything and not missing any appointments, and gives me the flexibility to take quick photos when my cameras aren’t quite ready.
Karen in 60 Seconds
Fav Place to TravelEurope
Fav On-the-Go ReadMy FlipBoard feed
Fav Travel AppGoogle Maps, TripAdvisor & Dropbox
Ideal Trip CompanionCan’t choose!
Next Travel PurchaseA drone
Next DestinationThe UK
Also, since so many of you have been asking us for them, here's our full list of country-specific posts outlining how to ship anything from Amazon to any country in the world. Our 2-step method makes it as simple as humanly possible, and takes about 3 minutes total: Austria, Bahrain, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, Hungary, Indonesia, Israel, Kuwait, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.
While you're at it, international travelers should read our N26 review for the best way to get free ATM withdrawals the best rates on currency conversion - anywhere in the world.