The Best Job in the World competition tempts in the most adventurous types to compete for a dream job, and the whole sideshow acts as a massive advert for Australia. Hats off to the Aussie tourist board; it’s a winner! We were lucky to catch up with a finalist in this Greg Snell interview.
Best Job in the World
Blessed with some of the toughest terrain, Australia is a challenging destination on one hand and an adventure sports paradise on the other. Surfing, kitesurfing, scuba diving – there’s even skiing to be enjoyed in three states!
Tropical on one coast, temperate on the other – with deserts, mountains and grassland between. It’s all about the natural world.
Intrigued at who was up for this year’s best job in the world contest, we spotted Greg Snell from Canada. He’s a finalist in the ‘Wildlife Caretaker’ category for a job on Kangaroo Island in South Australia. So we thought a Greg Snell interview would be interesting – we weren’t wrong!
Let’s see what makes him the man for the job; what makes Australia so appealing; and dig a little deeper into the personality of someone who, like us, gets his inspiration for life from the great outdoors.
Greg Snell interview
This interview about the best job in the world was conducted by Mark Pawlak:
What’s a ‘Wildlife Caretaker’ when it’s at home?
Great Question! A Wildlife Caretaker is someone who can identify with local wildlife and nurture the unique and fragile habitats which they call home. This is someone with a great passion for the outdoors and for conservation. Someone who cares about the protected environments near their home and abroad, a person who can relate to sustainable tourism methods and understand how to develop a deep kinship with the local wildlife.
Why do you think Australia’s the best spot for the competition?
Australia is an incredible country with so much to offer. Every state is home to a unique ecosystem with varying highlights for the intrepid traveller. It is an incredible opportunity to live and work in Australia for one year or more, and to have this opportunity now presented through the ‘Best Jobs’ comp is a dream come true.
What is it about the great outdoors that inspires you?
Nature. Full stop. From the absolute perfection of a flower in bloom, to watching the characteristics of a pod of dolphins, there is so much beauty in the natural world. Yet, the majority of the population are unaware.
With television and the internet and the social revolution, more and more young people are spending the majority of their days inside, or in the city centers, maybe experiencing the great outdoors once or twice a year on a family camping trip.
We who live and work emersed in nature, have a duty to share this beauty with the world and be a voice for its conservation and protection. I am inspired by the resilience of the natural world, the simplicity, and the above all the sense of exploration I get every time I travel to a new great outdoors destination.
Which sports are you into?
I’m a certified dive master and have scuba-dived in every major ocean and international diving hot spots (missing the Great Barrier Reef, but not for long). I love cycling, rock climbing, diving, trekking, football (soccer), ultimate Frisbee, and I have a feeling soon, Aussie Rules. Wherever I go I carry my rock climbing shoes and my Frisbee.
Why are you the man for the job?
I work in an environment that resembles a zoo with no fences. This is exactly the case with Kangaroo Island in South Australia, this environment is incredibly unique and a must see for anyone visiting Australia. As a tour guide in South America I am in constant contact with wildlife from all corners of the continent.
From the caimans of the Brazilian Pantanal to the penguins in southern Patagonia, I have researched, and been immersed in the natural wildlife and habitat of the Southern Cone – gaining a deep appreciation for its diversity and fragility. Through these experiences I have developed a strong commitment to understanding and preserving marine environments and their fascinating inhabitants.
Do we have a responsibility to nature if we use it as our playground?
Yes, hands down, absolutely. We as outdoors enthusiasts must be the voice for nature and our own backyard. I travel and visit wildlife reserves, national parks, conservation areas, etc. always with a sense of how my personal presence is impacting the four pillars of what believe constitute a sustainable experience. These are; Culture, Society, Environment, and Economy.
Nature is supported by itself and by the people who care for it. We are those people and we need to always have our responsibility in mind. You can gauge your own footprint easily. Think about it. How is your visit benefitting the four pillars mentioned above?
Which 5 items would you always pack in your daysack?
Rain gear, matches, thermals, energy bars, water.
About to travel somewhere remote for the first time, what do you like to know?
Maps! I do a lot of research usually via google, getting a general idea of any blogs or posts that have been written by anyone who has been to the location before me. I then read the ones that I believe have the most relevance to where it is I am travelling. I also speak to friends or family about the intended trip and location, get their input.
The winners in each of the categories will be announced on June 18 – keep up with Greg on: @gregorsnell