Niel Chen

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

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  • Hospital Research Coordinator
  • Bachelor's in Biomedical Science
  • From Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Profile 100% complete

About Me


Take my breath away. (Yes, that could also be a Top Gun reference.)


I was born and raised in Salt Lake City - loved the snow, skiing, and nature, but there's not much to do in the city! I've since moved out to Philadelphia for college and work, with a yearlong stay in Johannesburg, South Africa in between.

I'm currently back in Philadelphia, working and getting ready to apply for medical school.


Why I’m on Couchsurfing


The idea of CouchSurfing is great, and I'm a huge fan of using the network to just hang out even if you're not actively surfing and hosting.

Although I'm not in Joburg anymore, I'm keen on helping visitors get more comfortable in the city - it can be daunting at first, but I think those who keep an open mind about it learn to embrace the city! I've been in the shacks in Alex and commuted every day through the CBD, so I do know a bit about the "scarier" parts of town - just ask!


Joined CS before a trip to Cape Town. I surfed in two flats in the city, met tons of great CSers, and had a great time. Now meeting and hosting people in Philadelphia!


Photography, sporting events (Phillies!), concerts and live music, skiing, cooking from scratch, dance parties, dive bars, sunsets after long days, sunrises after long nights, local culture over tourist traps, random adventures, nature excursions, and craft/farmer's markets.

Music, Movies, and Books

Name a genre of music or a time period, and I'll give you my favorites - I try to listen to everything, even if I don't appreciate it at first.

Last few musicians/bands I've been listening to: Ne-Yo, Queens of the Stone Age, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Philip Glass, Kaskade, John Coltrane, Two Door Cinema Club, Major Lazer, Hall and Oates, The xx, Sia, Passion Pit, Florence + The Machine, Calvin Harris, Band of Horses, Goldfish.

Stuck in my head: Cold War Kids - Hang Me Up to Dry

One Amazing Thing I’ve Done

Southern Africa! Swimming across the Zambezi and staring over the edge of Victoria Falls from Devil's Pool. Watching locals illegally import goods from Botswana to Zambia on the Kazangula ferry - which crosses the river between the two countries.

Teach, Learn, Share

I've helped teach elementary school kids to cook, so I can at least take you from instant noodles to proper bolognese or marinara!

I've also been told that I'm full of strange facts and random trivia, so you'll probably learn something new from chatting.

Countries I’ve Visited

Bahamas, Botswana, Taiwan, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Countries I’ve Lived In

South Africa, United States

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