How it all began

The day I met Mr. Happiness

In September 2015, in a suburb of Oslo, I met a Computer Science student from Pakistan. He called himself Mr. Happiness.
During the three days we spent together, I realised that I was living in a cage built by my own hands. I was working to pay rent, so that I could go back to work. Like a good hamster, I was running on my own little wheel without realising that the only thing that kept the cage locked was my own ability to make excuses.
At the end of the three days Mr. Happiness made me an offer I shouldn’t have refused (click here for the full story), but I did.
I had to say “no” in order to go back to a job that had long since stopped putting a smile on my face. “We all have a mortgage to pay” is the usual excuse. I was hiding behind the comfort of the norm, pretending I didn’t have a choice.

On my flight back to London I realised my life needed to change.

Now I travel the world to document the life of people that live differently from the way we have been taught in the western world, to prove that happiness does not come from a stable job, a mortgage, a car or all those things we buy and never use. I try to travel in the greenest possible way: I cycle, hike, or sail. I use barter rather than money, I work in exchange for a place to stay, food or means of transportation. I meet wonderful people and discover as much about the world as I do about myself.

I have no doubts that if I want the world to become a better place, I need, first of all, to become a better human being.

This website will collect the chronicles of my journey towards a more fulfilling and adventurous life and the stories of the inspiring people I meet on the way.

 

 

Either you’re happy with very little, free of all that extra luggage, because you have happiness inside, or you don’t get anywhere!

Jose Mujica (Revolutionary, prisoner, former president of Uruguay)

Most recent stories

Click on 'The Journal' in the menu section to see all of my stories.

8
Aug
A game of light and space

A game of light and space

As the sun shies away behind the abraded slopes of Cotacachi, the sharp mouth of the Imbabura fills up with gold. The boys look up, frozen in trepidation. Mid-air, the basket ball hesitates, a flaming sky for backdrop, like a planet seeking its orbit. I look away with a grin on my face, uncaring of […]

22
May
Vintage Projector

Hidden secrets of the Eje Cafetero

“A soft light pervades the dusty rooms of the colonial building. Every corner is stashed with testimonies of the department’s recent past.” Away from the overly beaten touristic tracks of the Eje Cafetero, hidden among the anonymous streets of the small town of Calarcá, two unassuming men guard one of the most important treasures of […]

30
Sep
Baia Concha parque Tayrona

Dreams and aspirations

Baia Concha is a nice secluded bay in the Tayrona National Park. Late in the afternoon, when all the people are gone, fishermen and tourists boats have stoped and the sound systems have been shut down, the sun sets behind the greenest hills, the sky turns orange and one can enjoy the sudden silence and […]

14
Aug
Pan Ossia - Steel Pan Band from Gouyave - Grenada

Using frustration to produce real magic

Last Saturday Grenada was supposed to host the National Steel Pan Bands Showdown, also known as Panorama. On Friday I had the luck to assist the rehearsal of a small unsupported band in Gouyave, a small fishermen’s village north of St. George. Young students from the village spent months preparing for the event, working hard […]

1
Jul
Portsmouth market

The kindness of strangers

Back from the market this morning I realised I left behind a pineapple and a pound of fresh tomatoes. The little girl behind the stall, probably not even 10 years old, had run off to get my change. She took long enough for me to get involved in negotiations with a Rasta man for fresh […]

Find out more

Discover what you can do to promote change

The Progress

    23 Months
    13 Countries (3 Continents)
    1 Ocean Crossing
    Over 20000 KM
    9 Sailing Vessels
    3 Bicycles
    0 Flights

Carbon Footprint

    0.9 tonnes of CO2e/year
    Average footprint in the U.K. 7.13 tonnes
    Average footprint in the U.S. 16.4 tonnes
    Average worldwide is about 4 tonnes
    Worldwide target 2 tonnes

    Source: www.carbonfootprint.com

MAP

Follow the journey on a map and discover the geographical location of every single story.

Current Location: Ecuador

Go to map

Resources

Find out more about Happiness, Environment and how to build a better world. Good reads, data, stats and more.

Discover more

Get involved

I always welcome Cooperation and Exchanges. Discover how to take money out of the equation and change everything.

Find out How

Ride with me

Whether you like cycling, hiking, riding or sailing, join me on a leg of my journey. The more the merrier.

Find out How

Get in touch

If you want to get in touch directly please feel free to drop me an email. I will get back as soon as I find an Internet connection ;)

Write email

Explore my Photos and Videos

Feel free to have a look at my work as a Photographer and Filmmaker.

Go to website

Help me with the Journey

If you like what I do, and you would like to help me by sustaining my journey with a little monthly contribution, you can now easily do that through (Coming soon). You can contribute with as little as 1€.

Connect with me on Social Media

Instagram Facebook Twitter YouTube

Stay up to date with Ivan's adventures

Enter your email address to receive a quick notification whenever a new posts is published.

  • Casually strolling around

#weirdencounters #amazonrainforest #ecuador #tapir #helloyou #funnynature #funnyanimals #funnyface #thingsimeet
  • Bicicleta Amazónica 
#bicibamboo #amazoniaecuador #cicloviajeros #suramerica #biketravels #bamboobikes #cycletouring #beautifulnature #beautifulecuador
  • The Napo River, the door to the Amazon
#feelinglikesailing #amazonia #ecuador #bamboobike #bamboocycles #mibicimellevaacualquierlado #morebicycleslessborders #bicibambu #viajandoporsiramerica #cicloviajerosporsuramerica #explorandoamazonia
  • Life

#wonderfullnature #nobeesnolife #savethebee #savetheworld #waxqueen #bestofnature #colombiasnature #corpamazonia #conservation #conservación #conservationorg
  • Most definitely a good day. One of reconnection with nature and the earth. 
Nothing of what we do is of any importance if we forget where we come from. 
#backtothebasics #reconnecting #intothewild #amazonrainforest #monkey #pachamama #beutyofnature
  • Back to the jungle. 
#colombia #jungle #soldiers #conflict #exploring #remoteplaces #offthebeatenpath
  • Cyclocross 💪🚴‍♂️
With the new Classy/Mova 
@movacycling 
Competing in my first cyclocross race was super fun but I might need new lungs 😱

#bikelove #cyclocross #lovethemud #bikerace #newbicycle #bicicolombia #bogota #parquebolivar
  • Get your legs ready, Colombia’s best roads are waiting!

Your next road cycling adventure will soon be available. 
To register your interest please head to our website. 
www.ashenso.cc

@ashensocyclingclub 
#roadcycling #cyclingtour #bestcols #colsofcolombia #colombiamountains #tourciclismo #ciclismostrada #ciclismoruta #roadcycling #cyclingroad #besttour #cyclingsouthamerica #bestofcolombia #colombia #roadcyclingtours #ashenso #cyclingclub #cyclingpackage #supportedcycling #biketourcolombia #biketours #biciturismocolombiano
  • Rethink what your limits are. 
#ImpossibleisaLie 
#inspirationalvideos #incredible #cyclingwonders #nolimits #amazinghumans #wonderfulsport #wow #colombiancycling
  • Pàramo de Ocetá 
#oceta #ocetá #lovetherain #paramo #bestofcolombia #wonderfulnature #mongui #boyaca
  • A slightly unexpected view

#fantasyplaces #bestofcolombia #magiclandscape #interestingbuildings #cubdinamarca #dramaticsky
  • Finally the sun’s out
#solenbogota #cityscape #dramaticsky #arquitectura #streetphotography #buildings #modernarchitecture #bluesky #bogota