Counting Countries

With a membership of only around 100, it’s one of the most exclusive clubs on Earth. In fact, more people have been to outer space than have earned their way into this, the ultimate travel club. According to the United Nations there are 193 sovereign nations in the world. Welcome to the only podcast to bring you the stories from the dedicated few who’ve spent their lives on the singular quest of traveling to them all. Welcome, to Counting Countries. With your host, Ric Gazarian.


episode 88: Chris Sutherland…Striking Out On His Own

Key Links

  • Untamed Borders
  • Support Counting Countries, and check out these trips from G Adventures 
  • Support Counting Countries at Patreon
  • Counting Countries Apparel 

It was back in February and I was preparing for several months of non-stop travel.  That meant I had to record and prepare five podcasts prior to my trip so I could publish them once my travels began.  And randomly I got an email from Chris Sutherland sharing that he was swinging through Bangkok for a couple of days.  I know Chris from FB and being fellow moderators in Every Passport Stamp.  This was a great opportunity to sit down with him and hear his story in person.  In a perfect world, I would like to do all of my interviews in person.  Technically it is much better and it is also easier to get to know my guest.       

It has been a frustrating time for most extreme travelers as we shelter in place around the globe.  There does not seem to be an end in sight when travel will go back to normal. I hope everyone is well and keeping safe.   

Thanks to my patrons, Steph Rowe, Ted Nims, Bisa Myles, Stephen Rothwell, and Adam Hickman for supporting Counting Countries. I would also like to welcome our new patron, William Schelling.  Welcome aboard! They help pay for the production of this podcast.  You can support this podcast by going to  My patrons will hear more from Chris in an extra interview, only for them.  

Untamed Borders is our sponsor and they want to remind you that Covid-19 travel restrictions are slowly being lifted in certain parts of the world. If you are looking for inspiration for your first post Covid trip then check out some of their trips for the 2020-21 winter period in the middle east.

They still have a few places on their annual Saudi Arabia cultural tour. Exploring the cities of Riyadh and Jeddah as well as Maidan Salah - the Saudi Petra - in the far north of the country.  This is real high on my bucket list.  I tried to go here the other year but had visa issues.

They have two fixed date trips to southern Iraq. Their Cradle of Civilization tours take in Baghdad, Babylon, Samarra, and Basra; and includes Mesopotamian archaeological sites and boat rides in the southern marshes.

They also are arranging their first group trip to Algeria. Diving into the heart of the Sahara in the Tadrat Rouge mountain range where Algeria borders Libya and Niger. A real Untamed Border of this world. I spent a couple of weeks here. I love this country.

For more information visit their website at or drop them a message at

Chris struck out on his own as a teenager, spreading his travel wings more and more as he got older.  As he grew more confident, his curiosity grew, leading him to more and more challenging locations until he decided to chase 193.  Chris also shares some stories from his Tinder experiences; some great and others to be avoided.  A number of former guests have also mentioned during our conversation, including a very small world story.       


I encourage you to subscribe wherever you listen, Apple Podcast, Google Play, or Spotify and even better if you write a review.   

As I mentioned Chris and I met at  the Bangkok studio of Counting Countries, followed by dinner and drinks on Soi 11. Please listen in and enjoy.   

Thank you to my Patrons …. William Schelling, Stephen Rothwell, Steph Rowe, Adam Hickman, Bisa Myles, and Ted Nims.

Be the first on your block to sport official Counting Countries apparel!  You can purchase them today on Amazon.


And now you can listen to Counting Countries on Spotify! And Alexa!


Subscribe on Apple Podcasts today! And write a review!

Check out our friend: Large Minority.  They organize international rallies around the world including: Sri Lanka, Cambodia, the Philippines and the Amazon.  And watch my full-length documentary in Cambodia when I traveled with Large Minority.   


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About Counting Countries

Counting Countries is the only podcast to bring you the stories from the dedicated few who’ve spent their lives on the singular quest of traveling to every country in the world. Less people have traveled to every country in the world than have been to outer space.

Theme music for this podcast is Demeter’s Dance, written, performed, and provided by Mundi. 

About GlobalGaz

Ric Gazarian is the host of Counting Countries. He is the author of three books: Hit The Road: India, 7000 KM To Go, and Photos From Chernobyl.  He is the producer of two travel documentaries: Hit The Road: India and Hit The Road: Cambodia.  

Ric is also on his own quest to visit every country in the world. You can see where he has traveled so far and keep up with his journey at


Well… that depends on who you ask! 

  • The United Nations states that there are 193 member states.
  • The British Foreign and Commonwealth office states that there are 226 countries and territories.
  • The Traveler’s Century Club states that there are 329 sovereign nations, territories, enclaves, and islands.
  • The Most Traveled Person states that there are 949 unique parts of the world.
  • The Nomad Mania divides the world into 1301 regions. 
  • SISO says there are 3,978 places in the world.  
  • Me? My goal is the 193 countries that are recognized by the UN, but I am sure I will visit some other places along the way.

An analysis of these lists and who is the best traveled by Kolja Spori.  

Disclaimer: I will earn a fee if you order from Amazon/Agoda. Or book a trip through G Adventures.  PS  Thanks!   



Produced by Simpler Media


 2020-07-09  1h28m