Hi, welcome to Samsara Vegan Travels!
My name is Stefan van de Wetering, 47, from the Netherlands and addicted to travel. My first real journey was to the USA where I worked as a volunteer in a summer camp, this was back in 1994. Since that moment I traveled more and more. I finished my University Degree in The Netherlands and found a job, but that never held me back in exploring the globe as much as I could. I have quit steady jobs several times to venture out into the unknown, to explore different countries and cultures and to experience the ultimate freedom. So far, I have visited 57 countries (see the image below for countries I have visited). I have a strong preference to travel in South-East Asia, Japan and New Zealand.
My Personal Experience with Vegan Travel
As a Vegan, I know from personal experience that traveling the globe and being Vegan can be quite a challenge.
Although Veganism is definitely on the rise and there are a growing number of Vegan eateries in most countries in the world, there are still a lot of misunderstandings about Veganism, especially when it comes to food.
During my travels over the years, I have explored and will continue to explore nice places to eat Vegan food, and luckily other people are doing the same and are sharing those experiences. I want to take all my travelers to these restaurants so they don't have to search for them. I know how much time that can take, and how stressful that can be. Especially if you are hungry!
A Vegan Travel Agency is born
In 2018, I turned my love for traveling and a growing demand for Vegan oriented travel opportunities, into the birth of my own travel agency.
I want to take as many people to all my favorite countries, to enjoy the culture & people, the animals, nature and, last but not least, the Vegan delicacies. On top of that I want to give my travelers an opportunity to visit animal sanctuaries or rescue centers where everything evolves around the animals and not the visitors, and help out. I want to give them the experience of a relaxing, exciting and meaningful holiday, while sampling some delicious local delicacies.
Countries I have visited.
What does Samsara mean?
In Buddhism the word Samsara means impermanence, it symbolizes the endless cycle of birth and rebirth, also referred to as the wheel of existence. The Samsara concept envisions that animals and humans are interconnected, and everyone cycles through life after life.
This neatly ties in with the concept of veganism. If all living and sentient beings are interconnected, it makes sense to respect the lives of all sentient beings, because they are essentially part of you. In any particular life you can become this animal or that person as the energy and life forces that reside within all of us, flow continuously in the wheel of existence. Even if you look at this in a purely scientific way, our bodies return to the earth when we die and our energy disintegrates to become something new.
The endless knot icon in the Samsara Vegan Travels' logo symbolizes the endless cycle of suffering or birth, death and rebirth within Tibetan Buddhism.
In 2011 a documentary film was made about Samsara. You can watch the trailer here.
My Going Vegan Story
My mission is to convince as many people as possible all over the world not to exploit animals and people, and live a compassionate life by doing the least harm possible. A great way to start that conversation, is through food and asking non-vegans to cook Vegan food for you. Being kind is the bottom line for me.
Our Tour Leaders
Hi, my name is Brenda Waldekker and I am one of the tour leaders at Samsara Vegan Travels. I have a background in Cultural Anthropology and Nutrition. I love traveling, being in nature, cooking and exploring foods from different cuisines. I have been Vegan for almost 3 years. I love taking people around the world and showing them how beautiful the world is.
Countries I have visited.