Tyson Gray is our latest Fly Guy. Originally from Chicago, IL, this fly guy currently lives in New York, NY but having been to over 40 countries, he can be spotted around the world! Read On.
Soul Society 101: What are your earliest travel memories?
Tyson: My earliest travel memory was in 93' when my family took a trip to the Bahamas. It was a cruise and I was in the 7th grade at the time. I remember getting off the boat at the dock and there were so many people selling items and offering to take us on different adventures. From my time on the ship to the time I spent on the island, it was a sea a new experiences. I realized then that the world was too big for me to stay in one place.
Soul Society 101: What are your top 3 travel experiences to date and what did you love about each of them?
Tyson: Top 3 is difficult but I would say 1) Beijing, China because of the experience being able to climbing the Great Wall of China, 2) San Jose, Costa Rica because I was with friends and we went zip-lining and bungee jumping, it was so much adventure, and 3) Copenhagen, Denmark because of their environmental consciousness as a country. I loved riding a bicycle everywhere and seeing wind turbines in the distance. It was the most laid back and relaxing country I have ever been too.
Soul Society 101: What is on your travel list for 2015?
Tyson: So far this year I only have 4 trips booked. I went to Kingston, Jamaica Feb. 18-22 for my birthday. I am also going back to Reykjavik, Iceland May 17-22. And in August, I am going to Australia, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, and Sri Lanka.
Soul Society 101: What's your dream location to visit within your lifetime? Or have you already been there?
Tyson: I have been to 41 countries so if I had a dream location I've probably already been there. However, I will say that out of all my travels Cairo, Egypt was the most surreal. Riding on the camel through the desert as I approached the pyramids was literally breath taking.
Soul Society 101: Where is the most beautiful place that you've ever been?
Tyson: Cape Town, South Africa. The people have a mountain in the middle of the city!!! No matter where you are the scenery is simply overwhelming. I literally found it difficult to get anywhere because I was stopping every 5 steps to take another picture.
Soul Society 101: What has your biggest learning experience from traveling been?
Tyson: When I was in in Cairo I decided to go to Jerusalem for a few days so I took a bus from Cairo to Taba, walked across the border of Egypt and Israel into Eilat, and took another bus from Eilat to Jerusalem. The journey was about 10 hours if I remember correctly and I traveled at night so that I wouldn't lose a day. On the way back I took a bus from Jerusalem to Eilat and walked across the border again but there was no bus from Taba to Cairo until the next morning at 10am and it was midnight. The only hotel at the border was booked EXCEPT for a suite that was $300 (USD) for the night. After a whole lot of negotiating, I ended up hitching a ride with some local Egyptians for $100 to get me back to Cairo. Needless to say, about halfway through the trip as I was in the middle of the desert in the back of a van with random people I did not know and with no cell phone service I was I began to think that this probably wasn't the best idea. Nevertheless, as the sun came up and I arose from the backseat of the van, thankfully I was in Cairo. My biggest learning experience from traveling, when navigating through foreign countries at odd hours of the night and morning, plan ahead!
Soul Society 101: Destination(s) with the best food?
Tyson: I'm not a big foodie but I do remember eating REAL Italian food for the first time in Rome, Italy and it was amazing!! I have never looked at pasta or pizza in the U.S. the same again.
Soul Society 101: Destination(s) with the best beaches?
Tyson: Everyone always talks about the black sand on the beaches in Santorini, Greece but I was surprised to learn that Iceland actually has black sand beaches as well. Of course the black sand is just lava ash from volcanic eruptions but it is still beautiful to see.
Soul Society 101: Destination(s) with the most unique experiences?
Tyson: In terms of uniqueness, I would say South Korean temple stays. For a few won (South Korean currency) you can spend the night at one of the temples and participate in the life of the Buddhist monks. Unless you're a Buddhist, it's one of those once in a lifetime experiences that you always remember.
Soul Society 101: Destination(s) with the best city/nightlife?
Tyson: Best nightlife? I would have to say Barcelona. The city pretty much never sleeps, the clubs are huge, and every night it felt like a full fledge production!