The most travelled person in the world

The most travelled person in the world

Babis Bizas has been called “The Greek Phileas Fogg,” “The Greek who’s conquered the two Poles”, “The most-traveled man in the world.” He is a member of the Russian Geographic Society, one of the oldest on the planet, founded by Tsar Nicholas I, in 1845.

He started an unbelievable journey from Arta when he was 22-years-old. Up to today, he has visited all 195 nations in the world, according to the United Nations, has changed more than 40 passports and entered the Guinness Book, in 2004, as the only person that had traveled to 195 countries on the planet.



Born in 1954, he grew up in Arta and studied Political Sciences at the University of Athens and Slavic Languages at the Institute of Balkan Studies in Thessaloniki. He has been traveling since then, his student years, as he followed the stream of young backpackers to India.

He loved Afghanistan and was fascinated by Bangladesh, while when he was about to be left without money, he found a job on one of the numerous Greek ships anchored in the port of Colombo in Sri Lanka and sailed to Mozambique, South Africa and the United States. For the next 8 years, he was busy traveling as a tour leader.



In 1987, when he had already traveled to all the known tourist destinations, he decided to slow down his travels for a while, focus on planning and organizing new tours for small groups. Thus, with the help of the foreign languages he knew – in addition to Greek and English, he speaks Russian, Spanish, French and others – and both his experience of the trips he had started on his own and the love for adventure burning inside him, he got a job, and within a few years, he became the head of a tour, turning his love into a profession. He started his career as a Tour Escort with the biggest tour operators in Greece, such as MANOS, TRAVEL PLAN and HERONIA.

In 1987 he was invited to participate in the MANOS team and, when he joined the company, he was so innovative that in 8 months he changed the tourist scene in Greece. His biggest contribution to the travel industry was the opportunity for the average traveler to reach places that are still very difficult to visit. Cultural trips were born.

The beginning was with Cambodia and Vietnam (but not Laos at that time), where he led the first team. Soon, followed by West African countries, such as Chad, Nigeria and Guinea Bissau, where the locals saw for the first time such a number of people traveling together. In a few years, Cultural Tours was a triumph.



On one of his journeys, he ended up participating in a mission of Soviet helicopters in the North Pole, on a difficult 19-hours-flight round trip from the Siberian coast, and eighteen years later he managed to place the Greek flag on the South Pole. He traveled to Antarctica several times, visited the remote Isle of Aleutian Chain in Alaska and explored the remote Pacific islands. But his passion was the tribal regions of Africa and Asia where old cultures and traditions survived to this day, resisting modernization.

He spent time with the Himbas in northern Namibia, loved and got loved by the Hamers in South Ethiopia, met with the Bela in Niger and escorted the first visitors to the tribal areas of Apatanis in Arunachal Pradesh and the mountainous areas of South China. It is no surprise, therefore, that NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TRAVELER described him as The most traveled person in the world.”



Today, he works at COSMORAMA as a business manager and he plans excursions to unusual destinations (Kurdistan, Transnistria, Kurdish Islands, Land Franz Josef etc.) The tours planned and organized by COSMORAMA are full for months. In addition, there are no two similar tours in the same country, as each time he returns from a trip, something else is added to the next one. He is away from Athens for more than 300 days a year. The clientele is mainly Greek, but his tours have also included expatriates living in Athens or travelers coming from Australia, Taiwan, Mauritius or the United States.

In an interview with Cosmorama, at the question of what destinations he considers to have surprised him, he replied, “For many years I have been convinced that Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic islands, such as South Georgia, Kerguelen, Zavodovsky, and the like, are the most magnificent parts of the planet. Then, comes Venezuela, hosting some of the most exotic landscapes, with the prehistoric trapezoidal mountains “Tepui” in the area of Canaima, which elevated their vertical slopes 2000 meters above our heads – a spectacle that only Antarctica can compete with – followed by the tribes of northern Namibia and South Ethiopia, the peoples of Lake Turkana in northern Kenya and the landscapes of the Land of Francis Joseph in Arctic Russia. ”


Αbout the toughest trip he has experienced, he said, “The recent trip to Marion, South Africa. Around 2200 km south of Cape Town, heading for the Antarctic coast. It took 209 hours with a small sailboat traveling because of the lateral winds with 40 degrees tilt and with ups and downs in 4 meters waves. We could neither eat nor sleep. We were talking to each other, hoping to manage to survive the journey. And yes, we needed to come back. Only 201 hours for Port Elisabeth!

On the scientific basis, we were greeted with admiration, and then we traveled to the shores and bays where there were communities of Royal penguins, sea elephants and giant albatross birds. ”



Babis Bizas believes travel is “mental wealth, knowledge and wisdom. It is the water of life. It’s a book. You interpret and see the world with a clear look. You do it automatically and unconsciously. You feel more full of yourself. I do not want riches. I just want to travel. To get to where I cannot until my eyes become two loaves of soil. ”

To the question of what he thinks is the right preparation for a good trip, he replies, “It is enough to ask an agency to book you a ticket and a hotel and then to lose yourself in the place you visit. See one or two remarkable museums and monuments, but then wander around the neighborhoods and the everyday life of cities. Talk to the locals and walk to folk markets, try the tastes. ”



  Comments: 3




    Υποκλίνομαι στο Μπαμπη Μπιζα!!!!!Ειναι ο πιο πλουσιος άνθρωπος του κόσμου!!!ΜΠΡΑΒΟ!!!!

    • Φραγκιαδάκη;ς Γεώργιος

      Άξιος επαίνων, να έχει υγεία να συνεχίζει. ο ίδιος επισκέφτηκα μόνο 71 χώρες και νομίζω πω αυτός είναι ο πλούτος μου.