Telling people you're heading off on a round the world trip leads to a lot of questions. When we tell them we plan to go for at least 18 months and don't know if we'll ever settle down again we get a whole lot more. In all honesty we've got no idea what to expect and where we will end up. But we've been thinking about this for at least a year now and have some rough plans in mind. So this is for all our family, friends, future friends, adoring fans and anyone who is planning something similar. I give you the very-rough-may-not-work-out-but-we're-going-to-try-anyway round the world travel itinerary of Rohan and Max.
If you're planning something similar then make sure you check this list of things to do before you leave.
Phase 1- Van Life in Eastern Europe
We have our van which we plan to travel in for the first 5ish months. During this time we will travel through Eastern Europe (Slovenia, Serbia, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Albania, Montenegro, Macedonia, Greece and Bulgaria)before finally crossing in to Turkey. We plan to spend a bit of time driving the North coast of Turkey before entering Georgia. At this stage we aren't going to risk doing Armenia due to the potential issues then getting into Azerbaijan. Once we get to Baku we need to find a way to get rid of the van. This may be more complicated than it sounds but we're going to let our future selves deal with that!
We have no set route. Our first destination is Verona as we have tickets to a concert. From there we will just go with the flow. This is the only part of our journey which is under time constraints as we need to escape Europe before winter hits. Especially if we are sleeping in the van! Our goal is to be in Iran by November.
*UPDATE DECEMBER 2017* This all worked out roughly as planned and we successfully made it to Asia!
Phase 2- Overland Through Asia
We want to spend at least a month in Iran before getting a ferry to Dubai. Pakistan became too complicated as the border to India is not easy and nor is the Indian visa situation if you have been to Pakistan. From Dubai, we will fly to India. My parents are currently choosing between Kerala and Sri Lanka and will come and meet us for Christmas. It will have a been a year since I last saw them when I was home for Christmas in New Zealand.
We'd really like to spend a lot of time in India and Nepal as these are places we've always wanted to visit, they're cheap and there is so much to do and see! I would love to see Bhutan but I don't think we'll be forking out the $200USD a day for the compulsory tour. There are also no land borders between India and Myanmar so this will be another flight. From there the travel is pretty easy going. Zig-zagging through South East Asia, island hopping through Malaysia and Indonesia.
By now, we may be getting sick of each other and will need these tips for travelling long term with your partner.
*UPDATE JUNE 2018* We spent one month in Iran and then met my parents in Sri Lanka for three weeks. We spent 4.5 months in India and Nepal which was beautiful, challenging and exciting. After all this time in Asia, we were missing some Western comforts and needed to settle down and get some more work done on the blog so we jumped on a plane back to our favourite country, Georgia.
Phase 3 - Africa
Budget and enthusiasm permitting we would really like to see the entire world. Obviously this is a little ambitious but we're going to give it a crack. From somewhere in Asia we will fly to somewhere in Africa... and that's about as detailed as our plan gets at the moment. We would love to spend some time volunteering and will most likely focus only on a few countries rather than a big tour. Tanzania and Kenya are top of my list at the moment.
Phase 4 - South America
Max has spent a lot of time in this part of the world but I've never been. After a few weeks in Central America last summer and hearing so many amazing stories it's somewhere I'm convinced I'll love. We would also consider living there so might size up some cities for quality of life and availability of jobs in the future. Hopefully we will have enough left in our budget to spend around six months here. Leaving just enough for a flight back to NZ. We will most likely settle there for a while so I can show Max my beautiful home country, introduce him to family and friends and replenish our savings.
Our World Trip Bucket List
Here are some things we want to do at some point on our round the world trip. If you have any 'must-do' experiences in any of the places we're going please let us know in the comments!
Hike in the Himalayas - done
Learn to cook local food - done
Camp in a desert
Go on a safari - done
Take the train in India - done
See the Taj Mahal - done
Get involved in a meaningful volunteer project
Meet up with friends who live overseas - done
Stay in a bungalow on a quiet beach - done
Go to the Maldives - done
Stay in places long enough to have a 'local' cafe or bar - done
Sleep in novelty accommodation e.g boat, tree house etc - done
Go on a yoga retreat - here are some ideas for the best international yoga retreats!
Make a friend in every country we visit
We don't really know how long our money will last and we know we can always stretch it by staying in one place, working for a while or trying to increase the small income we make from this blog. We may never settle down again, simply finding ways to live in other parts of the world and constantly travel. Or we might get sick of it and decide to make a permanent home somewhere in the world. Either way it will be one hell of an adventure!
feeling inspired? Check out these articles to help planning your round the world trip
How to Save Money for Travel - A detailed and honest account of how we managed to save enough to travel for 2 years.
Setting a Long-Term Travel Budget and Sticking to It - How was calculated our budget for our trip and make sure that we don't overspend along the way.
The Best Travel Backpack - These backpacks have lasted us so well and been perfect for every situation. Read about why we love them so much.
Useful Items for Long-Term Travel - Things we actually use on a daily basis and couldn't live without in our backpacks!
Budget Traveller's Guide to Finding Cheap Accommodation - Save yourself a few bucks on accommodation all over the world with these useful tips and hacks.