Muscat: “I've never met a nicer nation of people,” were Rosie Gabrielle’s first words on Oman. “They’re so accepting and warm, and open to helping anyone. They treat you as if you are one of the family.”
Gabrielle may be Canadian-born and raised, but she has always nurtured a desire to experience all the culture the world has to offer. A freelance photographer and full-time motorcycle vlogger, she’s visited more than 20 nations so far. But this is just the start of her journey.
“I've always had an adventurous spirit,” recalled Gabrielle, speaking exclusively to the Times of Oman. “My first solo travel was when I was 19: I embarked on a trip to South East Asia, in the hopes of having a rich cultural experience. When I got there and had to take a bus, missing everything in between and just being surrounded by other tourists, it made me re-think my means of travel.
“I had done a quick weekend trip on a rented moto, and I loved it!” she added. “I was sold. This would be the way I would travel from now on. So, I bought my own bike, and travelled 12,000 kilometres across Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia over a six-month period.”
Gabrielle decided to visit Oman in January 2017, but only released her video documentary of her time in the Sultanate this September.
“I had never really heard of the country before I’d gotten a singing contract,” she revealed. “I was very pleased when I arrived to see how beautiful it was and how friendly the people were. I actually first came to Oman 12 years ago on that contract at the Hyatt. After that, I stayed and started doing photography. It wasn't until last year I did my first motorcycle tour on a Royal Enfield around Oman and then this year on a Kawasaki KLR 650.”
While what enriches Gabrielle’s travels across the globe are her shared experiences with the locals, some of her best memories have been made in Oman.
“The best memories are always the people I meet along the way,” she explained. “They are those who help me, inspire me, show me a different way to life, sharing their trials and hardships, and create a deeper connection and lasting relationships.”
“A revolutionary experience I had recently was on Masirah Island, here in Oman,” added Gabrielle. “Two local gentlemen had helped me when I dropped my bike. After that, they offered me food, water, and even helped fix the broken pieces on my bike. I was so overwhelmed by their kind spirits and gentleness I was brought to tears. Because I film my journeys in pretty raw detail, I'm able to show the world a side of this region they've never seen before.”
“I was overjoyed and felt I was given a huge gift, to be able to share and educate people on what the media tends to lay negative focus on.”
Having now embraced the feeling of oneness she feels while on the open road, Gabrielle had much to share with those who seek inspiration to travel.
“Do not be afraid,” she encouraged. “The hardest part of starting a journey like this is the first step. After that, you'll wonder why you never left sooner. Always go to a place with an open mind, without pre-judging it or having negative energy towards it.
“Don’t get upset when things don't go your way,” added Gabrielle. “Often it’s for a greater reason, and it leaves room for other great opportunities to happen. Always have faith in humanity and the energy you put out there is the energy you'll receive. No matter how bad things get, always stay positive, because it's in these times of troubles that we learn our most valuable lessons.”
Never listen to the negative things people have to say about a place,” she said. “It's their opinion, or something they've heard about, and more often than not, they have been wrong and it’s been the most amazing experience ever.”