It seems that Forrest Mallard has spent his entire life traveling.
Marine Corps Sergeant, Broadway Manager, Show Producer in Bangkok, Production Manager in South Africa, Program Manager in Dubai, always looking for a way to support his life-long addiction to travel.
Over the last few years, Forrest has made an effort to begin a life as a travel writer, but it wasn’t so easy. The idea of posting endless selfies on a beach didn’t interest him at all. Forrest states, “I know that modern travel blogging is mostly ‘Look at me, I’m having fun in exotic locations!’ But I actually want to focus more on the locations, and less on me.”
Forrest’s first attempt at blogging was the long-distance hiking website Tramposaurus Treks. On that site he poured out his passion for his favorite way of traveling, walking. Around the block or across the continent, it seemed like every long hike provided a years’ worth of adventure stories.
But the audience for a cross-continent hiking blog was limited, so Forrest enthusiasm for promoting the platform quickly waned.
Then, in October 2021, an opportunity arose that changed Forrest’s life. After spending a year and a half in Alaska, he asked his friend Suze in Budapest if he could work in her hostels, in any capacity.
Forrest Mallard recalls, “I told her, I can fold fitted sheets, I can sweep and mop, I was in the Marines and I can clean the heck out of anything… or I can make marketing videos for your business. And to my shock she said, ‘Just do the videos, focus only on media production.’ This was everything I had ever dreamed of. The opportunity to just create videos and nothing else.”
After arriving in Budapest, it still took him almost one month for the prototype concept of SizzleMap to be developed. Originally, the idea was to create 100 videos in Budapest, and as a thanks to Suze for supporting his dreams, he would heavily brand her business, Budapest Party Hostels, for giving him a place to stay while he realized his dream.
The energy and excitement behind this new video project was very different from Tramposaurus Treks. People were sharing videos and talking about them.
Now, with over 16 years of non-stop travel, Forrest Mallard had finally created a platform he was excited about. These days he feels more like a travel historian than a travel blogger. The education aspect is important. The entertainment aspect is important. But most importantly to him is that the people watching his videos have the desire to keep learning, and keep traveling.