Globe trotting Englishman Ian Wright has packed
a great deal of travel and adventure into his life. Before
presenting Globe Trekker, Ian spent three
months in Guyana with Operation Raleigh,
a Prince's Trust initiative, traveling in a self-made bamboo
raft down uncharted rivers. He spent three months in Egypt,
seven months traveling around India and Nepal, and six months
traveling around Europe including Poland and Romania.
An accomplished artist and theatre performer, Ian has had
an exhibition of his paintings at Chats Palace.
He also devises plays in schools, runs drama and art workshops at the Children's House in Islington on the weekends, and works
with children with behavioural difficulties in special schools.
After leaving art school, his 'odd jobs' included working
as a cycle courier and making and selling crafts, jewellry
and homemade jams at Spitalfields Market in
East London. He currently lives near here with his wife and
family. To relax, Ian enjoys playing football, eating out,
and going for walks in the English countryside.
Suffolk-born Ian has traveled all around the globe presenting
Globe Trekker. "Comforts don't interest me," he
says. "The sort of trips I go on are all about living
cheap and getting dirty which is how I like it."
On three occasions, Ian has won the prestigious U.S. Cable
Ace Awards for Best Magazine Host for his
Morocco, Central Asia, and Ethiopia shows.
"If you spend too much time thinking about it, then you
miss it! Things come. Keep looking, meet different people,
and exchange ideas. There is no rule."
"The first step is in your head. So don't think about
it, buy a flight ticket tomorrow and then worry about it on
the plane. This is the hardest step."
"In Nepal, the kit didn't turn up and we lost
two days. Then we went to the Monkey Temple and after two
hours the director got bitten to the blood by a monkey, and
was at risk of death from rabies. It was a disaster!"
"In Vanuatu, we visited the most accessible volcano in
the world. It erupted every ten minutes, spitting out moulting
lava all over the crater. It was unbelievable - until the
wind changed. A piece of lava landed two meters away from
my head. And we ran like scared rabbits crying like babies.
But now I wish I had a lava burn mark on my arm to boast about
in the pub."
On Globe Trekker...
"Every single country you go to just blows your mind!
You know with this job you always get 5 months condensed
in three weeks! The final program gives you a splash of colours,
a smell of the country, and that's where its success is I
"I love it! I'm like an adrenaline junky. That's my
nutty side coming out! It always seems more dangerous when you're
sitting there in your comfy room watching it on TV, but you
know, most of the things I do, I'm in control of. I've done
loads of stupid stuff as a kid, so I know my limits."
"Every country we meet incredible people, from an atomic
bomb victim in Japan to the blind masseur in Cambodia. The
people I love are the people I meet by accident. Sitting in
a back street of Mongolia talking to a man who works in a
run-down garage, speaks five languages, and has two degrees
makes me feel the size an ant. I'm just the boring glue that
sticks it all together."
"I love places in the middle of nowhere, no one is there,
and the landscape is phenomenal. Cambodia is just unbelievable.
You have pre-conceived ideas, which often everyone has, and
all you know is the Killing Fields. So the first five days
you see it, but after that you forget it. People are young,
they live for now. And Phnom Penh is such a brilliant capital.
I went clubbing there and the atmosphere was great. Just like
anywhere in Europe, young people happy and enjoying music!
The DJ was there in a cut Beatle car, mixing and sending friendly
messages to the travelers!"
"I also love places above the Arctic Circle. It is so
extreme, so absurd. It has nothing to do with your usual life.
It's mind-blowing. Greenland was just phenomenal. Almost the
size of Europe, and only 55,000 people! Amazing. A big wonderful
"There is no secret; there is nothing mysterious about
a rucksack. All you need is money, passport, and a change
of clothes. Forget the rest."
"I try and find time to paint on every trip. The most
inspiration I get is from being in the mountains and moody
weather. One of the best place for this is Southern Ireland.
I went there in September looking for this atmosphere. But
it was a heat wave for the whole two weeks, I was the only
one in the country looking for bad weather. What a loser!"