Travel Spotlight: Five Foot Traveller

I met this petite writer during the first Malaysian Travel Bloggers Meet-up last year and I did not know much of her background until I read her articles in the local newspaper called New Straits Time. She is one of those writers who writes from the soul and her stories brings your imagination to wherever she was at the moment. With that I’d like to introduce Anis Ibrahim of Five Foot Traveller and here she is answering questions as our Travel Spotlight of the month.

Who is the ‘Five Foot Traveller’?

What can I say! I love travelling because it makes me happy. I love travel for the freedom it gives me, the fresh air, the mountains, the forests, the jungles, the birds in the sky, the music in the air, everything. Even when my feet or back starts to hurt from uncomfortable beds or walking too much, I’m cool with that because that’s when I feel truly alive.

My current location is home in Petaling Jaya, where I’ll be for about another month or so until I start getting restless again.

Did you start writing then go? Or go then start writing?

I only start writing or blogging after I arrive in  a particular place, although I’ll usually have an idea of what to look out for in terms of current issues or interesting places to write about.

How do you find the time to blog while travelling? It mustn’t be easy!

I find it easier to blog while I’m travelling alone for the simple reason that it’s difficult to pull myself away if I’m travelling with friends. I’d rather be spending time with friends than bent over a laptop writing (unless, of course, I don’t like who I’m travellong with!). You’re right that finding the time to blog while travelling isn’t easy, so most of the time I end up forcing myself to write, usually till late at night.

Busses, trains or automobiles?

Definitely trains. Buses are a little more cramped than trains, and cars are even more constricting, although I do like driving long distances. Trains, on the other hand, are just nice-they’re like little worlds in themselves. I love how trains connect you from one point to the other in one continuous thread. There is a strange logic to boarding a train, seeing the sun set from your window, going to sleep, waking up, seeing the sun rise and the arriving at your destination.

What’s your most epic travel story?

My most ‘epic travel story so far would be my solo overland journey from Russia to Malaysia. I’d been thinking of doing that for so many years and although every trip is special in its own way, that one just beats everything I’ve ever done. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done for myself and I think that trip is going to stay with me for a long time.

What’s your favourite phrase in a foreign language?

No phrase, just one word- ‘Exit’, what you see on doors before you go out, in any language. ‘Sortie’ in French, ‘salida’ in Spanish, ‘uscita’ in Italian. My heart jumps every single time I see that word in any language. Just the promise of something else out there as soon as you walk out the door.

What’s the best single piece of advice you would give a fellow traveller?

 Go, and be happy.

Our Twitter fans were excited about this interview and had the following questions.

How do you decide on countries/cities/destinations to visit? Do you have any criterion or a set of criteria? [via @RambleandWander]

I like countries with an interesting political background because I think that’s where you get really fascinating people. I visited China, Myanmar, Russia, Mongolia and Cambodia for those reasons and because of that, would love to go to Tibet (not exactly a country but you get what I mean), the post-Soviet states and countries under the former Yugoslavia. The great thing is that all these countries are also really beautiful. I also like nice buildings and architecture, so I love cities like Rome, Florence, Venice, Paris and St Petersburg. I’m also drawn to dramatic scenery, so I’d love to visit Iceland, Easter Island and Scotland (again).

What 3 things that are essential to you that you will bring whenever you travel? [via @FarizLow]

I always bring a notebook to write notes in, an elastic clothes line to hang my laundy (and maybe to strangle the people I don’t like – just joking!) and muscle rub, for when my back starts to hurt.

If you can bring one local celebrity as your travel partner, who is he/she? And why? [via @popiamy]

If it’s a she, I would bring Adibah Noor because I think she’s a lot of fun and very, very funny so I know I’ll never get bored. If it’s a he-I would bring Zang Toi. He comes across as a really nice person and I’ve love to hear his stories about growing up in Kelantan and about all the famous people he has met.
The Five Foot Traveller is Anis Ibrahim who, as the name suggests, isn’t tall enough to play basketball. She writes about her travels so she can read her notebooks and dream and giggle about the good old days when she gets old and wrinkly- hopefully this won’t be happening too soon. You can read her at, where she most recently wrote about how she ate a lot of ice-cream in Venice: She’s also on Twitter as @AnisIbrahim and contactable via email at



6 Responses to Travel Spotlight: Five Foot Traveller

  1. Lann says:

    I was expecting her to choose Aaron Aziz or Adiputra as travel partner. That would be more controversial..haha. Another great Travel Spotlight, Fie!

  2. I really wish someday I could travel from Russia back to Malaysia just like her. She really inspires me to travel solo. In between, I am wondering who’s actually Zang Toi? xP

    • fienuts says:

      Hi Diana,

      You can do it too! You can even have your version of an epic trip babe. She inspires me too. Zang Toi is a well known fashion designer based in New York whose clothes have been worn by famous celebrities in USA and Europe. He’s from Kelantan!

    • Anis says:

      Yup, just like Fie said- he’s a Malaysian fashion designer but based in NYC. You should look him up! I think interesting and creative people are great to have around 🙂

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