Varun Vagish is an Indian solo traveller whose passion for mountaineering took over his life and he became a world traveller describing various places and spreading information about the travelling procedures, passports, Visas and local traditions. He tries to keep his stay as economical as he can. He says that travelling was his passion from childhood which slowly grew and then, he left his job and became a full traveller.
Varun Vagish aka MountainTrekker was born on Monday, 29 March, 1983 (age 39 years; as of 2022) in Delhi, the capital of India. As his parents were government employees, he spent his childhood across several cities which include Narora, Tarapur, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Rawatbhata and Asansol. He did his schooling from Atomic Energy Central School, Tarapur. He has done his Bachelor’s in Communication and Journalism related programs from Delhi University from 2000 to 2003. From 2003-2004, he completed his PG Diploma in Mass Communication/Media Studies from the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, Delhi. In 2012, he gained the certification of PhD in Mass Communication from MD University, Rohtak, Haryana. He has also worked as an ex-journalist and newsreader in AIR, Academician, and PR professional. He mentioned in an interview about his love for travelling from his childhood and he said,
“A major part of my childhood was spent in Maharashtra. It is funny that as a kid, I used to hate maths. So, my mom, who was a teacher, asked one of her colleagues to give me tuitions, so that I get to learn better. I used to make excuses that madam is unwell today, bunk tuitions and wander off. That time I was in Maharashtra in a place called Tarapur (India’s first Atomic Power station) and the Sahyadris (Western Ghats) was nearby. So with my bicycle, I used to go off to the hills alone, for 2-3 hours. That’s quite a memorable experience of my childhood days. And the love for the mountains was something I grew from a very tender age.”
Height (approx.): 5′ 8″
Weight (approx.): 62 kg
Hair Colour: Black
Eye Colour: Black
Body Measurements (approx.): Chest: 40 inches, Waist:32 inches, Biceps: 12 inches
He belongs to an OBC Hindu family.
Parents & Siblings
Although the names of his parents are unknown, both of his parents were working professionals. His father was a government employee and his mother was a teacher. Not much is known about his siblings.
Wife & Children
He is unmarried.
He is a Hindu.
Currently, he lives in Asansol, West Bengal.
Life as a Traveller
He has travelled to more than 25 countries and has received more than 200 million views on his videos of travel on his youtube channel, Mountain Trekker. He has travelled and popularised the concept of Hitchhiking and Couchsurfing while travelling among Indian people. He said about his first travel adventure and said that his boss gave him one day leave and he picked up his motorbike and went to Shimla and stayed for a couple of hours in a gurudwara and then came back to his home. He had a steady job however he started travel vlogging and left the job. When asked if his parent’s reaction to his travel, he said,
“No, both myself and my parents were confident that it was a good choice and that I will do well in it. I was getting a chance to chase my dream and my parents supported me in this. They had seen how difficult it was for me to manage a job with my traveling and blogging and felt I should devote all my time and energies to something I loved doing. Besides I had already started getting a good response to my work, which included the Government of India award for promotion of Tourism, and they felt I was on the right path.”
In an interview, he mentioned his Himalayan adventure which is very close to his heart,
“I can’t forget the bus ride, which was my first chance of travelling on a bus roof while coming back from Hemis Gompa. Can’t forget the first sip of the local salty butter tea with a slice of local traditional bread made up of yeast and cereals. The vast plains near River Indus, the climb of Khardung la and the best part – my two-days long return journey in HRTC bus from Leh to Manali, which passed through the world’s most amazing landscapes. This was Ladakh to me in June 2001. It was almost a virgin. Unlike today, there were a few shops in the main Leh market and very few vehicles. That was my first trip to Ladakh and will always be close to my heart.”
He started travelling around 2007 when he started his youtube channel. He explained his strategy to manage funds while travelling and said,
“The basic thing that I always believe and say to people is, when you are traveling, it is not about the money, but about the risk you are taking, about the courage. Another major thing is trust. You have to learn to trust people if you wish to enjoy your travel. If you wish to go hitchhiking, you have to trust people when you ask them for lift or wish to stay over at a stranger’s place. Even I had issues initially, but once I started believing in people I got to know how beautiful it feels. The world is not as bad as we assume it to be, after watching news channels and shows which portray negativity.”
When asked in an interview about travelling, he said,
“I had once hosted a person from Australia, whom I had hosted in Delhi, in 2004 or 2005. We had become good friends and I got to learn a lot from him. I asked him how he managed to travel so much with limited funds. A great advice that I got from him is, when you wish to travel with less funds, you need to keep your necessities and wants limited too. You should be prepared to use public transport, you have to curb luxuriousness and lead a simple life if you wish to make the most of your travel. Secondly, you can put the internet to use to earn your expenses, you can opt for freelance jobs and whatever skills you are good at, you can put that to use. There is a plethora of opportunities to earn money online; all you need is an internet connection and a laptop. You can run a blog, create a YouTube channel or even make a website and monetize them to earn money.”
He introduced people to a new and exciting aspect of travelling on limited funds, known as Volunteering. He said,
“Another great option is volunteering, which is not yet very popular in India. It’s a concept, where you volunteer your services and in return, you get free accommodation and food, instead of being paid for your service. I have recently uploaded a video of a girl whom I met in Turkey, and she shares her experience about how she travels the world without spending money, as she volunteers her services in return of the basic needs.”
Varun Vagish in Oman
- He was awarded National Award by the Government of India for the promotion of Tourism.
- He has more than 1 million subscribers on his YouTube channel.
Varun Vagish with youtube award for crossing 1 million subscribers
- Before leaving his job for pursuing travelling as a full-time hobby, he was working as Deputy Manager – PR of Eastern Coalfields Ltd.
Dr. Varun Vagish, Dy. Manager – PR of Eastern Coalfields Ltd is making waves on YouTube. An avid traveler, he runs a YouTube channel ‘Mountain Trekker’ in Hindi & has over 3 lakh subscribers with 28 million views.Doordarshan rates him as one of the of the best You Tubers in India pic.twitter.com/BUZedl3Tmt
— Coal India Limited (@CoalIndiaHQ) July 26, 2018