43-year-old traveller Natalia Ciobanu from the Republic of Moldova in Eastern Europe has been on the road travelling around the world for five years.
Natalia arrived in Niue earlier this week, making Niue her 141st country she has travelled to in the world.
Natalia was 39 years old when she left her life working in France as a speech therapist to pursue her childhood dream of travelling the world.
She began her travelling journey in 2019 where she visited 60 countries, pre-covid pandemic.
Since covid travel restrictions relaxed, Natalia has been travelling non-stop across the globe and she is now here in the Pacific eager to explore what the Pacific Island countries have to offer.
She is a solo traveller with only her backpack that weighs less than 10 kilograms.
When asked if travelling around the world was something she had been planning for a long time, Natalia says it was all spontaneous.
“This happened spontaneously. One morning, I just woke up and I wanted to travel the world. It happened very fast.”
Natalia said that at the time she did not have the money to travel but after researching online she came across a source that suggested that having $USD 14,000 is enough to travel around the world for one year.
In order to achieve her dream and get the money she needed to travel, Natalia sold everything that she owned including her car, jewellery and clothes. She also saved a lot of money during the covid pandemic.
Natalia is enjoying Niue until she returns to New Zealand tomorrow to continue her journey throughout the Pacific.