A Kiwi traveller who explored Iraq on an intrepid holiday has lifted the lid on what life is really like in the previously war-torn country.
Wanaka man Nick Fisher journeyed through Iraqi Kurdistan, staying in its capital city of Erbil during his treks across the rural mountainous ranges near the Turkish and Syrian borders.
Despite dodging airs trikes and coming up close to wild coyotes, the 27-year-old says what you see in the media describing Iraqi Kurdistan as highly dangerous isn't reality.
The holiday vlogger, who has travelled to many "dangerous" nations, including North Korea, says he wants to showcase the truth about these nations and break down any negative stereotypes tourists may believe.
"The idea of my [YouTube] channel is to go to places with a terrible history and reputation and to show [my viewers] that's just a small piece of the pie," Fisher told Daily Mail Australia.
"Some people and places are deemed dangerous. People will say 'Isis is dangerous' but there's so much more to the country than that.
"I always get warnings but I'm used to it now. I go and get my own context and feel for a country by speaking to friends or locals on the ground," Fisher said.
The 27-year-old's journey through Kurdistan showed incredible scenes of greenery and even snow, as opposed to the common belief the region is full of desert and destruction.
Fisher showcased Iraqi Kurdistan's five-star ski resort and the wealth evident in the city of Erbil, including thousands of people driving Bentleys and Mustangs.
The Wanaka traveller says it's a common misconception that Iraqis live in extreme poverty and are in danger, instead of revealing there is a mix of social classes, much like New Zealand.
He described the people of Iraq as some of the "most hospitable people in the world".
"The people were some of the most hospitable people on the planet. I think for one it's in their culture. And two, they know their country has a bad blanket reputation and people think 'terrorists'.
"I met one man who fought for the Peshmerga. Peshmerga is the Kurdistan Army, and he didn't want me to leave. He wanted to give me a bed for me to stay."
Fisher explained many religions and cultures were welcome in the area, with 8 per cent of the Kurdistan population identifying as Christians.
While their culture may be different, he explained many aspects of life are similar to that of the western world.
"The guy who showed me around had lots of similar interests as me. We both watched the same American YouTube channels. He goes to the gym, and there's a big fitness culture."
He also enjoyed the amazing foods on offer, detailing the tasty bread, rice and fresh tomato stew on offer.
After more than a week-long holiday in the country, Fisher says anyone who is looking to travel to countries with a shaky reputation should speak to locals to gain a true understanding before turning their back on a holiday.
"Take what you hear with a grain of salt. Don't listen to everything you hear and talk to locals. People are the same everywhere. Everyone wants to have fun, love their family and just hang out."