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Mat with the local rice farmers in their traditional dress, Banaue, Philippines

Mat, Southeast Asia Specialist

Finishing his studies in 2004, Mat ventured out on several worldwide journeys before beginning a career in travel in 2008. Over various worldwide trips he has also worked and travelled in Australia, explored South America and spent a summer coaching football in the USA.

Mat has enjoyed some unforgettable experiences including such highlights as swimming in a school of 50 or so manta rays off Komodo island, and trekking to find various species of wild orangutan in Sumatra, Kalimantan and Malaysian Borneo. His Thailand visits are now into double figures with Indonesia hastily catching up. He's also travelled extensively to the Philippines, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Singapore, which gives great perspective as each country offers something so different.

A huge foodie, he loves the fiery flavours of Southeast Asia. He is also a keen photographer and filmmaker. For a true experience, Mat always recommends taking extra time to just aimlessly wander.

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I'll never forget when…

On a day trip from the beautiful island of Bohol, we travelled across the calm turquoise waters to explore and snorkel the protected reef around nearby tiny Pamilacan Island. Travelling by local fishing boat we hoped to see some dolphins en route, but we were joined by a family of sperm whales, basking with their young all around our tiny little raft boat with dolphins also playing all around us. Just an unforgettable experience. As mentioned elsewhere, snorkeling inside a school of 50 or so majestic manta ray in the Komodo National Park, Indonesia is also another water based experience which really touched me and made me realise just how lucky I was and am to be able to experience such incredible nature first hand.

Photos of Mat

Mat at the Ayuthaya temple ruins in Thailand Mat at the Ayuthaya temple ruins in Thailand
Mat with some Balinese children Mat with some Balinese children
Mat with his guide trekking in search of tarsiers, Bohol, Philippines Mat with his guide trekking in search of tarsiers, Bohol, Philippines
Mat catching some rays on a rurual train in Thailand Mat catching some rays on a rurual train in Thailand
Mat amongst some pungent durian fruit in a market near Koh Samet, Thailand Mat amongst some pungent durian fruit in a market near Koh Samet, Thailand
Mat at the floating market at Amphawa, Thailand Mat at the floating market at Amphawa, Thailand
Mat at the hanging coffins of Sagada, Philippines Mat at the hanging coffins of Sagada, Philippines
Mat helping a local make pancakes in Ayuthaya, Thailand Mat helping a local make pancakes in Ayuthaya, Thailand
Mat cooking during his 'Thai for a Day' day in Chiang Mai, Thailand Mat cooking during his 'Thai for a Day' day in Chiang Mai, Thailand
Mat during performance in Kota Kinabalu, Borneo Mat during performance in Kota Kinabalu, Borneo
Mat on a cycle tour near Yogjakarta, Java, Indonesia Mat on a cycle tour near Yogjakarta, Java, Indonesia
Mat at a waterfall near Borneo Rainforest Lodge, Danum Valley, Borneo Mat at a waterfall near Borneo Rainforest Lodge, Danum Valley, Borneo

Photos taken by Mat

Prambanan Temple - Yogyakarta Prambanan Temple - Yogyakarta
Local children in the market, Surabaya, Java Local children in the market, Surabaya, Java
River scenery in Tangkahan, Sumatra River scenery in Tangkahan, Sumatra
Wild male Orangutan near the Ecolodge, Bukit Lawang Wild male Orangutan near the Ecolodge, Bukit Lawang
Male wild Orangutan near the Ecolodge, Bukit Lawang Male wild Orangutan near the Ecolodge, Bukit Lawang
Mother and baby Orangutan near the Ecolodge, Bukit Lawang Mother and baby Orangutan near the Ecolodge, Bukit Lawang
Bukit Lawang Ecolodge restaurant and lobby Bukit Lawang Ecolodge restaurant and lobby
Smoking Anak Krakatau volcano Smoking Anak Krakatau volcano
Trek route at Anak Krakatau volcano Trek route at Anak Krakatau volcano
Sunset on Anak Krakatau - Mat with Guide Sunset on Anak Krakatau - Mat with Guide
Monitor lizard on Rakata island, part of the original Krakatau volcano Monitor lizard on Rakata island, part of the original Krakatau volcano
Basic tented accommodation on beach of Anak Krakatau Basic tented accommodation on beach of Anak Krakatau