Author: Stephen Lioy

Photo of the Week: Exploring Asmara, Eritrea

Photo of the Week: Streets of Asmara, Eritrea   Researching a trip to Eritrea, the bulk of the (admittedly very limited) information available points to one major draw: the Art Deco Architecture of capital city Asmara. An Italian colony from the 1880’s till 1947, the European influence is notable throughout the country but particularly in Asmara. Italian-era theaters, ornate villas housing consulates and government offices, street-side cafes serving up macchiatos and pasta, and the sound of Italian as a second-language among the older generations. But there are other sides, as well, deeply religious (the population is roughly split between Islam...

Read More

A Day of Travel Costs in Sichuan China

A Day of Travel Costs in Sichuan China China can be an intimidating country for independent travelers, both because the language and culture feel so much less accessible to outsiders and because the prices are often much higher than areas like South East Asia. The country is a fascinating place to travel, though, and to skip it because prices are a bit high would be a shame. From nearly three months of travel in China’s Sichuan province earlier this year, here are my takes on what it costs. (Here’s what it costs to travel in nearby Yunnan Province.) The...

Read More

World Nomad Games 2016

Gettin’ It On Like Genghis Khan: World Nomad Games 2016 What do Steven Seagal, Genghis Khan, and a bunch of kok boru goats have in common? They all seem to shine with the waxy sheen of death, and they were all focal points of the World Nomad Games 2016 in Kyrgyzstan. Successor to the first-ever World Nomad Games in 2014, the 2016 iteration saw an admirable admixture of 1200 competitors  from over 60 countries. Not only were the notable nomads in abundance – Kazakhstan and Mongolia sidling up alongside the likes of the Russian Federations’s Bashkortostan Republic – but inexplicably so were...

Read More

Photo of the Week: World Nomad Games 2014

Photo of the Week: World Nomad Games 2014 A celebration of culture and sports, international cooperation, press passes and sheeps’ asses. Nope, it’s not the Olympics, but the World Nomad Games: a biennial festival of all things nomadic culture on the shores of Issyk-Kol lake in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan. Contributor Stephen Lioy covered the event in 2014 as a blogger and photographer, hitting the highlights of the sports competitions and cultural folklore festival throughout the six-day event, and is currently in the country again for the 2016 festival from September 3rd – 8th. On the face of it, the...

Read More

Photo of the Week: Tagong Horse Festival

Photo of the Week: Tagong Horse Festival It’s the Wild West, with fast-riding horsemen and long-standing family feuds and even the occasional mineral-rights dispute. It’s not Texas though, it’s China, the Western reaches of Sichuan province where Tibetan culture keeps a firm hold on the ancient region of Kham. And in the town of Tagong, for a few days each summer, everybody’s inner cowboy comes out to play.   Dressed to the nines in festive best, most of the population of the town and the surrounding region turn up for the annual Tagong Horse Festival. What is for most of the year...

Read More


The GoMad Nomad Travel Mag is an online magazine for independent travelers publishing original travel articles on popular and off-the-beaten-track destinations, volunteering and working opportunities abroad, and practical travel advice on long-term, adventure, alternative, and budget travel.

Read more about GoMad NoMad