The Wikileaks Founder’s Gotten Around in More Ways Than One…Follow His Trail Around the World
Love him or hate him (and there doesn’t seem to be much wiggle room in-between), Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is a man on the move–some might say, on the run.
Even before he founded the infamous website which has hosted classified U.S. intelligence cables, Assange’s life was decentralized. The son of parents who ran a traveling theatre troupe, he grew up moving around a lot. In some ways, the Australian multinational is the prototypical Third Culture Kid.
Let this worldwide tour of some of the locales Assange has called home (or temporary home) give you ideas for your imminent and/or future travels. Been there? Done that? Not in the style of a global espionage fugitive and nomad, you haven’t.
Our humble tale begins in the birthplace of Mr. Assange, the state of Queensland, in New South Wales, Australia.
Technically, he was born in Townsville, but I prefer to begin the tour in a more magnificent location.
Townsville is in fact adjacent to the central section of the Great Barrier Reef, which is of course one of the ‘seven natural wonders of the world,’ according to many sources including CNN.
The closest airport is outside Prosperpine. You can always fly into Brisbane which is 386 km from the Reef.
This is the location of Assange’s alma mater, the University of Melbourne. It’s also the site of a police raid on his home when he was accused of computer hacking in 1991.
Melbourne has a reputation, near and far, as Australia’s culinary capital. Of course, new states are always upping the ante.
Melbourne is also the original location of top Australian chef Neil Perry‘s Rockpool Bar & Grill.
Tanzania, East Africa
If you’re looking to drop out of Western civilization and to do it in style, why wouldn’t you want to live, for a spell, in Tanzania?
Though I can’t personally see Assange climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, I could see him trekking through the Serengeti or ‘global masterminding’ in Zanzibar.
The latter was good enough for Princess Diana’s designer.
In Assange’s famously outed Ok Cupid dating site profile, he says: “I like women from countries that have sustained political turmoil.” That explains why Kenya would have appealed to him as one of his home pit-stops.
Tribalism and elections have fueled political and social unrest in this East African Nation.
Undoubtedly he got into some fun hitting the nightlife circuit in Nairobi’s Westlands and River Road quarter.
Ah Stockholm, herein lies the center of all of Assange’s legal troubles and his ‘sex by surprise’ accusation. It is doubtful that he stayed in many hotels here. Anna Ardin’s apartment was cozy (and free) enough.
Had he been more adventurous (and intuitive) he would have doubtless stayed at the boutique and chic Berns Hotel in Stockholm.
The famous old hospice hosted celebs back in its day. Room 431 served as a dressing room for Ella Fitzgerald and Marlene Dietrich.
Assange is said to have rented a house here. So he would have never experienced the stunning harbour views at the 101 Hotel in Reykjavik.
Perhaps he popped into the B5 Bar and Bistro for drinks and night revelry. You never know who you might bump into there.
Famous Rejkjavikker Bjork has been known to return to her home town and frequent some of the watering holes and clubs.
Last stop, London. Well, there’s never really a last stop for a Third Culture Kid like Julian Assange. But this was where he was last seen and apprehended–if we could call it that.
There’s simply too much to do and see in London to not make a long sojourn of it–court order or not. If I received a chunky book advance like Assange did I’d stay at Blakes Hotel in SW7 and visit hip Shoreditch and Stepney Green for the cool galleries and bistros.
I’d also become a member of the SoHo House or Hospital Club and mingle away.
Also in ‘Third Culturism’: