So far we’ve come up with this list of countries we’d like to see. I’m sure it will morph over time but it’s a good starting point. Planning our RTW route started out as what seemed like a massively important and overwhelming decision. After much research and brain racking we came to the conclusion that for us, it really didn’t need to be. We decided to start in Thailand, in SE Asia as we’ve been there many times and it’d let us get our traveling legs.
65 countries: Mexico | Costa Rica | Nicaragua | Panama | Argentina | Chile | Colombia | Peru | Kenya | Madagascar | Morocco | Mozambique | South Africa | Tanzania | Albania | Austria | Belgium | Croatia | Czech Republic | Denmark | France | Georgia | Germany | Gibraltar | Greece | Hungary | Iceland | Ireland | Italy | Malta | Montenegro | Netherlands | Norway | Portugal | Russia | Serbia | Spain | Sweden | Switzerland | United Kingdom | Vatican | Iran | Israel | Jordan | Turkey | Cambodia | Hong Kong | India | Sri Lanka | Indonesia | Japan | Kyrgyzstan | Laos | Malaysia | Myanmar | Nepal | Philippines | Singapore | South Korea | Taiwan | Thailand | Vietnam | Australia | Cook Islands | New Zealand | Palau
We have quite a few Star Alliance Aeroplan miles so we’ve used them to get us to Thailand from Calgary, Canada via Chicago and Zurich. Within SE Asia we’ll just travel by land, sea and budget airlines. We’ll keep the air miles for the more expensive long haul flights between the main regions we plan on visiting: Europe (and Morocco), South East Africa, Central and South America and Oceania.
Ideally, we’d like to follow summer around the world. Avoiding monsoon and cyclone/hurricane seasons would also be good. We now realize that we can’t hit every country at the absolute best time. It’s practically impossible to do when travelling slowly. Visiting places in their peak season is also a lot more expensive. So we’ll just do our best, using shoulder seasons and hopefully avoiding the crappy weather seasons.
Russia kind of skews the map as its so big and currently we only intend to visit Moscow and St. Petersburg. For the ‘stans, there’s only one right now: Kyrgyzstan. It looks beautiful and people say good things about it so it made the list. Since its our only ‘Stan choice, it’s a bit of an island in the region (up from India). As we go we should be able to figure out a way there as we get more info from other travelers.
So our chosen technique appears to be keep calm and carry on round the world just going with the flow. In summary, our plan is: “there is no plan”. Stay tuned to see how that turns out. 😀