Is there a “right” way to travel? Our 38-Day Itinerary

Bon Voyage by Natalie Parker

Short answer: there is no right way to travel.  But, we sure can kill ourselves if we think we’re doing it wrong.

Mr. P and I planned a very ambitious 38-day trip around the globe.  Very. Ambitious.  Some may think it’s “wrong” to hop in and out of so many countries, that one should spend a lot of time to “really experience” what a country and culture has to offer (dare I say more “authentic?”).  We used to think that too.

We started planning this trip around a 10-day safari.  There were so many other places we wanted to go and we wouldn’t have the opportunity to take this much time off work again.  In previous trips, we spent time in one country or one region.  It felt weird to switch around a lot.  We really wanted to go to India, but we also really wanted to go to Vietnam.  But if we were in Vietnam, we were really close to Cambodia.  Wouldn’t it make sense to see Angkor Wat if we were already in that part of the world?  Could we make it work in just one day?  Would we have to chose between Angkor Wat and the Taj Mahal?

Then we let go.  And went for it.

Our 38-day Itinerary

Here is how our trip shaped up:

  1. Fly to London (Overnight)
  2. Fly to Johannesburg, South Africa (Overnight)
  3. Arrive Johannesburg, South Africa
  4. Travel to Shidleza Safari Camp, South Africa
  5. Shindzela Safari Camp, South Africa
  6. Shindzela Safari Camp, South Africa
  7. Shindzela Safari Camp (Morning), Travel to Johannesburg (Evening)
  8. Travel Kwara Camp, Botswana
  9. Kwara Camp, Botswana
  10. Kwara Camp, Botswana
  11. Kwara Camp, Botswana (Morning), Travel to Kwando Lagoon, Botswana (Evening)
  12. Kwando Lagoon, Botswana
  13. Kwando Lagoon, Botswana
  14. Kwando Lagoon, Botswana (Morning), Travel to Cape Town, South Africa (Evening)
  15. Cape Town, South Africa
  16. Cape Town, South Africa
  17. Travel to Dubai (Overnight – Layover)
  18. Travel to Malé, Transfer to Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
  19. Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
  20. Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
  21. Travel to New Delhi, India via Colombo, Sri Lanka
  22. New Delhi, India (Morning), Travel to Jaipur, India (Late Evening)
  23. Jaipur, India
  24. Travel to Agra, India (Taj Mahal)
  25. Agra, India (Morning), Travel to New Delhi, India (Afternoon)
  26. Travel to Singapore
  27. Singapore
  28. Singapore
  29. Travel to Hanoi, Vietnam
  30. Travel to Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
  31. Ha Long Bay, Vietnam (Morning), Travel to Hanoi, Vietnam (Evening)
  32. Travel to Siem Reap, Cambodia
  33. Angkor Wat, Cambodia
  34. Travel to Da Nang, Vietnam via Ho Chi Minh City
  35. Da Nang, Vietnam
  36. Travel to Hong Kong via Hanoi, Vietnam
  37. Hong Kong
  38. Travel to San Francisco

How Did we Do?

It was an awesome trip.  We spent a lot of time in planes, but I’m happy that we were able to see everything we wanted to see.  Sometimes I felt a bit like we were “checking the box” travelers, trying to get in the big sites.  But, we purposefully didn’t see every single must-see in every city.  We knew we were getting just the flavor of a place and stuck to it.  We also tried to stick in relaxing time during parts of the trip and used resorts in the Maldives and Da Nang to recharge.

Still, every time we used a guide, we had to explain why we were spending so little time in their country.  When it came down to spending a little time somewhere or not spending any time, we chose the little.

There are SO many places we want to go back to.  We knew that would happen.  We are always going to want to go everywhere.  It’s always going to be hard to decide what to do with vacation time and funds.

I’m not sure if we’d plan a trip this crazy again, but it was the best experience.  Seriously, how many times are you going to be somewhere where the Maldives are actually on the way to your next destination?  Americans will understand.

The card above is this one by kikki.K.  I picked it up during a card shopping spree at their Christmas sale while we were in Singapore.  

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