I know this is a ridiculous question...but I have a paralyzing fear of snakes. I also have a huge dream of travelling, particularly throughout Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, China, India, Philippines, etc...) and Europe. I realize it's pretty certain that I would see snakes, particularly in Asia...but will they bother me? Has anyone ever run into one in a hostel? Are they only in jungles and rainforests or will I come across them in cities? Again, I realize this fear is completely irrational...but it's very real to me!!
Hello Lori 😊
I have a fear of snakes as well as all types of crawlies. It has not stopped me travelling. I stayed in the rain forest last year and spent a lot of time screaming but still stayed there for 2 weeks. :D
I think snakes can easily be avoided if you dont walk in long grass and watch where you are going at other times. Take a flash light for walking in unlit places. Stay away from them and they will stay away from you.
Let put it simply...snake don't stay on beach...cross the road in Bangkok...and you know what...they don't take ride on buses or jump in your swimming pool. I've play golf all around Asia...would be a great place to see them...never did in 12 years.
Now as say Mell, you can go in the jungle camping for few weeks...you will see them...but hey, not everybody has these dreams...doesn't make you more or less adventurous...
so snake...well...you won't come across them except if you look for them...cocroaches...if you are back packing...that should be a much more frequent sighting...but these big guys have never eat anybody!!!!
I've done a lot of crazy things with one of my best friend...he always told me to go with him camping in Amazonia...no thanks...it's just a personal choice...and if you look at my last few entries..i'm quite well travelled....
Thank you both so much for the reassurance. I certainly don't want a silly fear to get in the way of exploring the world! And by the way, this site is wonderful. I've just started researching my travels, and this blog has been the most helpful site i've found!!
I am about to upload a blog about that time in the jungle and all the snakes and crawlies we encountered. It will be uploaded later tonight, in case you want to read about what a scardy cat I am when it comes to things like that. :D
Thanks Mell, can't wait to read it.
Sometimes traveling is a great way (or good enough reason) to confront your fears. I have a completely irrational fear of slugs (which I don't think can harm you even if they wanted to, at least with snakes there's the slight potential) ... none the less, I wanted to hike in the coastal redwood forests which just happen
to be the home of the huge, gross yellow banana slug. After quite a lot of shrieking, jumping and standing paralyzed and panicky in a trail, I eventually relaxed enough to at least not scream all the time (I wouldn't go so far as to say I was comfortable around them, but at least I wasn't entirely uncomfortable) and even managed to take a picture of one by the end. So who knows! Maybe traveling will actually help you cope with snakes in some small way (I still hate slugs but at least I know I can
tolerate them if I have to....for a safe distance)
Mell, just got done reading that blog...you are very brave! You definately had your hands full of bugs, spiders, and lizards of all sorts. It's comforting to know that you were able to be brave and stick it out despite being so scared. Thanks for sharing your creepy crawly experience 😊
Everyone has fears, some of them are just easier to avoid than others. We have been travelling in South and Central America for over 11 months now. Every time we go on a trek we are told there is a high possibility of seeing snakes, yet we have only seen one - and even then he was heading off in the opposite direction as fast as he could go! So, it seems to me that if anything it is quite lucky to get to see them rather than have them everywhere. Of course it depends where you place yourself as to the likelihood of bumping into them. As a rule, no, you will definitely not see any in the cities/towns, but there is more chance in the more remote places. They will not be in hostels!
Also, I agree with post no. 7, sometimes travelling can help with your fears. I used to have a big thing against dogs for no reason at all. Whilst I am still not a big fan of them, you simply can't walk down the street in Latin America without a stray dog wandering past and I have become much better at dealing with them.
Thanks Ruth, that's really good to hear about your travels in South and Central America. I had heard that the snakes are even worse there so it puts my mind at ease to hear you've only seen one. For my first big solo trip I don't plan on treking into extremely remote areas...i'm just going to have to be brave and hope for a little luck in avoiding them!!
You should be pretty safe, just watch out for overgrown kind of areas. I was with my g/f and her parents and we were staying on the southern end of Ko Lanta in Thailand. One night my g/f's mother stepped out of her bungalow in the dark and stepped straight on a snake. The snake bit her a couple of times and the locals ended up killing it. They couldn't decide if it was poisonous or not. Turned out it wasn't, lucky for her.
You should be ok, I haven't heard of it happening to anyone else so i think it was just a one off kind of thing plus where we were staying was pretty rainforesty and overgrown.
Snakes are my favorite animal, so I look for them everywhere I go. Not counting the fleeting glimpses that most people would miss, in three years of nearly perpetual travel I can count on both hands the number of times I have come across one. Nearly every time I found one it was because I was looking for them in places that travelers normally don't go. Most people seem to have a fear of snakes, so they indiscriminately kill them in populated areas, not thinking about the important roll they have in the natural world. Even the deadly snakes I have found were docile and unaggressive.
I have an irrational fear of large insects, but I have not let them keep me from going to places I want to visit. Traveling has actually made my fear of the large insects lessen, because I have been around them a lot - I spent one night on a bench at a bus station in the Chaco with a huge cloud of giant beetles swarming around me and crawling all over me. If you feel up to the task, try to find a reptile house. You will be able to get a close look at many of the local snakes in the region you are traveling in from the safety of the viewing area and you will be able to learn about them - Most fears come from not understanding the object of the fear, so if you learn a bit about the snakes you will discover that most snakes are completely harmless and even the most venomous of snakes would prefer to flee instead of biting you (they need their venom if they want to eat) and none of them are slimy.
If you do come across a snake in your travels just assume it is poisonous and give it a wide berth - Most people get bitten in the act of killing the snakes, so let them live.
Whatsss the with the hate for sssnakesss? They are sssimply sssplendid ssspecimensss of ssslithering ssseductivenesss, sssliding ssslowly, sssimply and purpossssely! SSSo sssmooth and not at all ssslimy. Hmmm, I like sssnakessss.
Helpsss if you have a lisssp!
I saw a snake in Japan on an island off Hiroshima. I was a little put off but it didn't move so I had nothing to worry about. Snakes are just as afraid of you as you are of them. They are fine once you don't disturb them. I went walking in Australia, stupidly enough in a pair of flip-flops where there were venomous snakes but I knew to stick to the path and to not step on areas where there were dried leaves,as a snake will hid in those kind of places to get away from the sun and heat.
I was okay but should have worn better foot wear and those things walkers use to cover their lower legs.
Another tip which was given to me by somebody is to take a long stick when walking in long grass. Then you can move it around in the area in front of you to find out if there are snakes there. Personally I still prefer to avoid the long grass if there might be snakes hiding in there.