I just finished writing an e-mail explaining where I'll be, and what I'll be doing on my trip around the world. As I was writing it, I realized this is the tenth or eleventh time I've explained it. And as it changes with each telling, as I forget what month is what, I decided to finally look at all my plans and write a definitive answer. So here, listed below, you will find where I'll be travelling and when.
You Can Help Out Along the Way
I love travelling with locals, and being pointed to all their favourite spots. There's nothing better than having someone help you through an area, showing you things you'd have never seen otherwise. If you or someone you know will be in a country / area I'll be visiting at the time I'm there and could show me around or perhaps even loan me a couch to sleep on I would be most appreciated. Feel free to e.mail me if you can help.
The Master Plan
September - November: Europe, probably western where Visas aren't an issue. I'll be taking the train from city to city - in theory spending a week in big cities, and a few days in smaller ones. My plans are completely open. My countries are not set in stone, nor are when I will see them. I will let the spirit of travel guide me while here.
December: I'll be in Florida for a week (a weird place, I know, but it provides some stability, and allows for a connecting flight to my next destination). There I'll drive to the bottom of the Florida Keys (something I've wanted to do for a long time now, and the only worthwhile thing to do in Florida, I'm told.) Then it's off to Africa on a GAP Adventures tour. I'll go from South Africa to Namibia, to Botswana, to Zambia.
January: January is my month in South East Asia - A week in Bangkok (where I'll try to get Cambodian, and Vietnamese passports) and then on to Cambodia, and Vietnam. If I can't get the Visas, I'll tour around Thailand for a month. I'm sure there's a lot to see there.
February: I fly to Lima, Peru to hook up with another Gap Adventure, which will take me through Peru and then see me hiking three days through the Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu. After that I'll fly to Buenos Aires and spend a week there.
March: I'll hook up with Gap Adventures for a final time, and take a boat down to Antarctica, past the Arctic Circle. When I leave that tour after a few weeks, I'll be off to San Francisco (one of the few places in America I've really wanted to see.)
April: Japan will call me back, after two years away. I hope to spend a few weeks in Tokyo, and then travel to Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima, and Nagasaki. There's so much more I'd like to do here, but I think it will require a third trip to get me up north, and to the southern islands.
May: I'll fly to Hong Kong, and then try to figure out the China Mainland visa. After a week in Hong Kong, if the visa works out, I'll spend a week in Shanghai, and a week in Beijing. I've also budgeted another week for spill over, and other places that I didn't know I wanted to see.
June: I'll be in Australia in June, trying to figure out how to see the giant country without blowing the last bit of money I have left. And then it's off to New Zealand.
July/August: This is the part of the trip that comes down to "am I broke yet." There are a number of places I'd like to see, but it really comes down to funds. Parts of the Ukraine, Easter Island, Boston, and a host of other places would be on the list for this time.
End: My final flight will be to Vancouver, where I will take the train across Canada, back to Toronto. I'm looking forward to seeing the prairies through the window.
If you have any tips, tricks, or other information about any of the destinations I'll be visiting I'd love to know them. Normally I do thorough research on any destination I visit, but for this much travel all at once it becomes far more challenging. There will be no guidebooks here, or days of research per city.
Please contact me with whatever information you think would be of interest.