Last week, I was nominated for the Liebster AwardLiebster means dearest, sweetest, kindest, nicest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute and endearing.  This award started back in 2011 and exists only on the internet, given by bloggers to fellow bloggers to recognize their work and a way to promote their own and other people’s blog.  It is also a great way to encourage camaraderie within the blogging community.

The rules are simple:

  • Thank the person who nominated you in a blog post and links back to their blogs.
  • Answer the questions sent by the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate other bloggers to receive the award and write them several new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Liebster Award logo in your post and/or your blog.

It was my honor to receive this nomination and I would like to send my special thanks to the talented Ricci from When In My Journeys for recognizing my works. Check out Ricci’s blog for his journeys in the Philipines and South America, as well as his amazing travel photos.

Here are my answers to the ten questions that Ricci asked:

1. What inspired you to start a blog?

One and half year ago, I created a travel photo book to record my own journeys and to share it with my family and some very close friends. But, my best friend suggested that I should take a step further and publish my works. Her argument: I have been in many places, I should share my experiences and knowledge with others. A great idea, and thus last September Len was created.

2. What is your favorite destination in the world?

Although I have many favorites, Paris is the place that I keep returning. I have been in Paris for several times, but there are still many places in the city that I would like to explore. I also love Hamburg and Vietnam, as they are my hometown and home country.

3. How would you describe yourself as a traveler? Are you into backpacking, more comfortable/luxury travel, etc.?

The more comfortable type (but not the luxury one). I require a comfort bed, a clean room, privacy, and safety. Other luxurious amenities is not really important for me. I don’t mind trying specialties in restaurants, but Michelin star restaurant is also unnecessary.

4. How do you find travel blogging so far?

So far so good. I think my posts look better and are more coherent than four months ago. I was also able to make some friends (though virtually) and learned a lot from my fellow bloggers.

5. Best food that you have tried on your travels?

Tapas – the Spanish finger food – is an art. Before I traveled to Spain, I have no idea that eating tapas could be so interesting. In Germany, there are not many types of tapas, and they look not appealing at all. Things are different in Spain. There are seemingly endless variations of tapas, and each restaurant and tapas bar has their tapas specialties.

6. Do you have a full-time job?

Is student counted as a full-time job 🙂

7. What place(s) is on top of your bucket list?

Japan. I love the country: its tradition, culture and especially the food. I wish I could spend a month to explore this country. But I guess I cannot make it this year as I am writing my thesis right now. I won’t be able to leave Hamburg for the next 6-7 months.

8. Beach or Mountain?

Neither. I prefer city most. But if I have to choose, then mountain would be my decision. At least, I have more things to see on the mountain than at the beach. For me, two or three days for a beach vacation is enough. I cannot lay the whole day on the beach and do nothing.

9. What important piece of advice can you give a newbie blogger?

I am a newbie myself so I cannot provide any life-changing advice. But I think there are three words that new bloggers should keep in mind: consistency, quality, and engagement.

  • Consistency: you don’t have to post every day ( I don’t do that either) but choose a day in the week, and try to stick with it. Make your blog a weekly newspaper.
  • Quality: keep your content appealing and interesting. A touch of individuality is recommended. For example, you can cover a topic that millions of people wrote about, but you can write it from your perspective. It is your blog anyway, you are the ruler!
  • Engagement: make contacts with other bloggers. Give them a star, but better leave them some words. I guess no one will reject a nice comment or a compliment, right?

10. What are your plans this 2017?

As mentioned above, finishing my thesis would be my top priority of 2017. After that, I might consider one or two trips to Eastern Europe (Polen and Baltic States), Southern Europe (Croatia, Greece) or southern Italy.

My eleven questions to the nominees are:

  1. What inspired you to start blogging?
  2. Do you have any difficulty at the beginning?
  3. How do you find blogging so far?
  4. Which advice can you give to a new blogger?
  5. Name five destinations on your bucket list?
  6. Name three Must-have items for you while traveling (mobile phones and camera do not count, as we always bring them with us)?
  7. Do you prefer local specialties or something you are familiar with like burger, pasta, etc.?
  8. If you have tried some specialties, which dish left a strong impression on you?
  9. Who is the most interesting person you have ever met on your journey?
  10. Assumed that you are a solo traveler, are you afraid to ask strangers for help, or maybe just take a picture for you?
  11. Have you ever getting into trouble (e.g. scams, thefts, lost luggage, etc.) or any dangerous situation while traveling? How did you handle the situation?

Here are my nominees *drum roll*

Nandita and Raga from Sending Postcards Home! – The traveling couple who are sending postcards home from their trips around the world.

Audrey from Living for Experience – A traveler in a foreign land and an explorer at his home country, Singapore.

Jolene from So Much To Tell You – A banker by trade, a writer at heart but I know her as an accidental traveler.

Carlos from Ostend Nomad – A passionate traveler and photographer who has a strong interest in urban exploring, street art, and military history.

Alice from Alice vs the World – An explorer who love to experience the unusual side of travel. For example, visiting the most haunted places in the UK.

Anne from Food, Travel, Tour – A liberal thinking and modern acting woman who enjoyed every minute of her life. When circumstances allow, she doesn’t mind a bit “Livin’ la Vida Doca”.

If my nominees don’t want to accept the award, feel free to decline it. But from my side, I would love to know more about my wonderful fellow bloggers 🙂 Have a nice start of the week!


  1. Hey Len! Thanks for the shoutout! My first award in blogosphere🎉🍾😂 It might take me a while to get back with this but I will (and gives me the chance to be nosy with others!). I didn’t know you rated Japan so highly. I guess I work for a Japanese bank so became desensitised over time… but we are going in April and I’ll probably post something then. 😊
    In relation to the questions, I’ll probably cut them down if that’s OK (don’t know the rules of awards too well but 11 would seem heaps long to pass on…) Anyway, congratulations for your award and thanks.

    1. Thanks and you welcome 🙂 Don’t worry about the questions. Just cut them down as you please. There is no fix rule about the number.
      As someone who grew up with Doraemon, Anime and Japanese video games (and recently my interest in Japanese cooking), I think Japanese culture have a significant impact on me. I know a few stuffs about the country, but have never seen it with my own eye. I guess that made Japan on top of my list 🙂

      1. Haha, I see, I think I watched Doraemon when I was like… 5 and that was it. Maybe you can transition into a food blog one day too 😜
        I can totally understand your sentiments. Same with me and Denmark. Growing up as an adult fan of Lego, Danish designs and architecture, and our first ever Australian princess, have all made a deep contribution to my special sentiments for Denmark. And to be honest, the wait is worth it to see and feel the place for the first time, the place you’ve fantasised for so long coming alive right before your eyes.

      2. It would be a disaster, if my blog were turned into a food blog. I can cook food that is edible, but my cooking skill is definitely not at the level that I can present 🙂

  2. Congrats! 🎉
    I’m definitely going to check some of these bloggers, they sound interesting!

    Good luck for your thesis!👍

  3. Congratulations on the award, Len! It was so nice to get to know a little more about you through your answers. I admire your photos and I agree that it was a wonderful decision to start the blog and share your worldly adventures with the world. Good luck with your thesis and hope you’ll make it to Japan some time next year! 🙂

    1. Thanks a lot, Nano! I really hope I can make it next year, and your blog will be my ultimate guide book 🙂 But is it difficult to travel alone, if I cannot speak/read a single word of Japanese?

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