Meet Maman Suryaman - Indonesia
What led you to becoming a leader?
Working in tourism industry was my aspiration when I was younger. I enjoyed getting to know people from all over the world. I started as a local guide in my hometown and worked hard to become a leader.
Is there one ‘real life experience’ that stands out for you?
The best real life experiences often happen by chance. Sometimes on our journey we will see a ceremonial and be invited to join, other times visiting traditional marketplaces is a great chance to interact with the local people.
What is the most special thing about the region you lead in?
Indonesia is an amazing country, it has a balance of up and coming cities and beautiful beaches. Spectacular views of the rice fields with mountain back drops. A mixture of different religions, traditions and languages. And of course the food - nasi goreng is a travellers’ favourite!
What is your favourite travel memory?
One of my favourite memories was when I was leading a Lombok trip. En route to the hotel we became stuck in traffic due to a wedding convoy. My group was interested to see what was happening, so they got out of the bus and were invited to the party. They had a great time dancing with the locals and enjoying the celebrations!
What tip would you give to someone who’s seeking ‘real life experience’ while travelling?
My top tip is to have an open mind, to talk and interact with local people who are always happy to practice their English and learn about your life also. Indonesian people are very friendly and will always be welcoming.