James Joseph Scanlan was born in London, United Kingdom in May 1990. James showed an interest in the world around him from a young age, being fascinated by maps and other languages even before starting school. He is the middle child of 3 brothers and is proud to have heritage from Eastern Europe, Iberia, Scandinavia and the Balkans . Currently, James is working as an educational presenter and also as a free-lance writer.
Europe in a Day – Day Trips to the Continent was James’ first ebook, published in August 2015. A second, fully updated and extended edition was published on May 9th 2020.
An avid traveller, James set himself the goal of visiting 50 countries before he turned 30, and achieved this goal on December 15th 2017 when he arrived in Bosnia & Herzegovina. He was also on track to visit each and every country in Europe before turning 30, but had to abandon several travel plans due to the COVID-19 lockdown – so still has Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Russia to go!
Outside of travelling, James is also a huge fan of the Eurovision Song Contest. James started writing for EurovisionIreland.net in 2014 after working as a cameraman in North Macedonia. Since then, he has provided coverage of Eurovision events in the United Kingdom, Romania, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Austria, Sweden, Portugal and Israel and attended the Eurovision Song Contest as a member of the press annually since 2015. He has written several Eurovision related books, including The Complete Eurovision Song Contest Year Book 1956-2020, Just Enough Ukrainian for Eurovision English-Ukrainian Phrasebook and Just Enough Portuguese for Eurovision English-Portuguese Phrasebook.
James speaks 13 languages to varying degrees of fluency and always enjoys learning words and phrases in new languages. He says “Being multilingual helps you experience so much more of the world and of course comes in handy while travelling. I’ve had great conversations with Albanian taxi drivers, despite not really speaking the language and know enough Polish to give a dog simple commands… so it definitely gives you some interesting experiences!”
COUNTRIES & TERRITORIES VISITED:
So far James has visited:
England, France, Spain, Germany, Belgium, Austria, Italy, Slovenia, United States of America, Luxembourg, Egypt, Denmark, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Norway, Ireland, the Netherlands, Malta, Monaco, Wales, Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, Greece, Serbia, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Northern Ireland, Sweden, Czech Republic, Scotland, the Canary Islands, Romania, North Macedonia, Isle of Man, Bulgaria, Vatican City, Lithuania, Iceland, Finland, Latvia, Kosovo, Andorra, Cyprus, North Cyprus, Canada, Ukraine, San Marino, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Republika Srpska, Portugal, Estonia, Gibraltar, Balearic Islands, Turkey, Israel, Palestinian Territories, Faroe Islands, Belarus, Moldova, Transnistria, Jersey, Guernsey
LIST LAST UPDATED: APRIL 2022
CURRENT COUNT: 64
James has visited:
4 out of 7 continents
- Europe (born)
- North America (Jun 2008)
- Africa (Sep 2009)
- Asia (May 2019)
- 🥇All 4 constituent countries of the United Kingdom (Jan 2014) 🇬🇧 🏴🏴🏴
- 🥇All 7 European Microstates (Dec 2017) 🇦🇩 🇱🇮 🇱🇺 🇲🇹 🇲🇨 🇸🇲 🇻🇦
- 🥇All countries/provinces of the former Yugoslavia (Dec 2017) 🇸🇮 🇭🇷 🇲🇪 🇷🇸 🇲🇰 🇽🇰 🇧🇦
- 🥇All 28 * member states of the European Union (Aug 2018) 🇦🇹 🇧🇪 🇧🇬 🇭🇷 🇨🇾 🇨🇿 🇩🇰 🇪🇪 🇫🇮 🇫🇷 🇩🇪 🇬🇷 🇭🇺 🇮🇪 🇮🇹 🇱🇻 🇱🇹 🇱🇺 🇲🇹 🇳🇱 🇵🇱 🇵🇹 🇷🇴 🇸🇰 🇸🇮 🇪🇸 🇸🇪 🇬🇧 *
- 🥇All 3 British Crown Dependencies (April 2022) 🇮🇲🇯🇪🇬🇬
- Most countries in a 24-hour period – 4 (🇦🇱 Albania, 🇬🇷 Greece, 🇩🇪 Germany, 🏴 England)
- Stood at both ends of the Mediterranean within a 6 month period (Europa Point, Gibraltar 🇬🇮 and Tel Aviv, Israel 🇮🇱)
- Seen from a distance, but haven’t set foot in! 🇦🇽 Åland Islands, 🇯🇴 Jordan, 🇲🇦 Morocco, 🇸🇦 Saudi Arabia
Furthest Points on the Compass – Currently:
- Furthest North – Reykjavík, Iceland (64°08’00″N) 🇮🇸
- Furthest East – Qasr al-Yahud, Palestinian Territories (35°54’61” E) 🇵🇸
- Furthest South – Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt (27°54′44″N) 🇪🇬
- Furthest West – Nanaimo, Canada (123°56′11″W) 🇨🇦