Christian Betzmann Embraces Islam – A Quick Interview:
We all were addicted to “Betzmann Vlogs” on YouTube during the lockdown in 2020. Christian Betzmann, a German tourist and travel vlogger who came to Pakistan and stayed with his friends for a couple of months, travelled across the country and won millions of hearts with his humour, cheerful personality, attempts at speaking the Urdu language, and kindness towards the local people.
Recently, he announced in one of his vlogs that he converted to Islam. People were curious about this sudden change, and we could not resist requesting him for an interview. Here’s an insight into his experience in Pakistan, his views on the culture and people here, and why he embraced Islam.
1. What drove you towards visiting Pakistan, considering the foreigners still have reservations while planning to travel here?
Mr Christian Betzmann: “I never planned to come to Pakistan. I was initially planning to travel to India, Srilanka, and the Philippines and start my YouTube channel until I saw the videos of my friend Drew Binsky. He is a popular vlogger and had recently visited Pakistan. He inspired me to add Pakistan to my list and came here before India (laughs). I fell in love with the people and the culture and never wanted to leave!
2. How have Covid-19 affected travel vloggers so far? And how are you coping with it?
Mr Betzmann: “To be honest, I’m very fortunate to have a German passport that allowed me to go around still quite well. It didn’t negatively hit me. I lived in Shahveer Jafry’s home in Lahore during the lockdown and was surrounded by amazing people whom I could call my family. We made videos together, and my YouTube channel got enormous views as people mainly were home watching videos in lockdown, so I was pleased.
Traveling-wise, the lockdown has its benefits and negative impacts. You have to get tested for Covid-19, wear a mask while travelling and so many countries were shut down, which is terrible but on the other hand, you can travel to beautiful destinations. I am in the Bahamas right now, which is paradise, and there is no tourist around, which is a BONUS! You just got to make the best out of any situation.”
3. How did you find the people and culture of Pakistan?
Mr Betzmann: “First thing I enjoyed about Pakistan is its people. They are the most kind-hearted and welcoming in the world so far for me. I’ve travelled a lot in Asia, and what I’ve observed is, people are generally friendly in Asia, but mostly they are lovely to be courteous or to get extra money from tourists like me for their benefits. But the people of Pakistan are genuinely sweet, hospitable, and pure-hearted, not only from outside but inside too. I never got ripped off here and felt safe.
4. Did you enjoy Pakistani food and culture? Was it easy adapting the taste?
Mr Betzmann: “I love Pakistani food, especially the barbeque, the curry and Biryani. The culture is amazing. I’ve been to almost everywhere by now, and I have found the culture of Pakistan extremely diverse and rich.”
5. What convinced you to convert to Islam?
Mr Betzmann: “I’ve spent almost one year in Pakistan. During this time, I met so many incredible people and learned a lot about religion and lifestyle.
Growing up in Europe, Islam was always connected with negativity, war, terrorism, and I was not even a religious person before. So, I didn’t care about what people thought back then. My best childhood friends were Muslims, and deep inside, we are all human beings in the same simulation we call life.”
He further added, “Islam is the religion of peace, and I felt a deeper connection and something I want to experience and explore deeper for myself.”
6. What are your plans for the future as a travel blogger? Will you come to Pakistan again?
Mr Christian Betzmann: “I am currently in the Bahamas right now, promoting tourism and showing the beautiful island life on the island. I’ll be visiting South America in a few weeks, which is a whole new journey and still a little secret about what I have planned there. After a few months, I will be back in Pakistan for some secret projects!
We wish him all the best for his future and on his new journey towards peace.