Three hundred sixty fucking five days. I can hardly believe it. I’m not sure I entirely believed I’d last for this long. And, actually, I was never really meant to (kind of). According to my original itinerary, I was supposed to be living & working in Australia by this point. Instead, I’m on the beach in Cambodia.
I’m not entirely sure where to begin in summarizing my one year abroad. And I definitely don’t know what to say about my future, because I just don’t know. In 52 weeks, these are some of my stats:
- I’ve visited nine countries in 12 months: Spain, Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, India, Thailand, Laos & am currently in Cambodia
- I’ve read 28 books, mostly fiction, though I’m now on a non-fiction kick
- I’ve gone through two-and-a-half Moleskine journals (the pocket-size, square grid ones)
- Nothing stolen, so far as I know
- I’ve lost a few pieces of underwear in laundry & a Flip video camera (where did it go?!)
- I’ve broken two cameras and one computer has died on me
- I’ve been on 10 boat trips: a ferry from Spain to Morocco, a Nile River cruise, a tourist boat in the Bombay harbor, a Kerala backwaters cruise, the slow boat in Laos, four ferries in southern Thailand, and a 10-hour boat ride in Cambodia through some floating villages
There’s a lot more I’ve done obviously, but it’s hard to remember everything. Check back in a few days to see a list of all the silly travel rules I’ve broken.
I figured the easiest way to summarize my trip will be to simply rehash some of the stuff I’ve shared on this travel blog. Obviously I’ve had a lot more memories and experiences than what I’ve shared here, and sorry, but you’re just not going to get all of them!
Since departing for this trip, this blog has seen many ups and downs. For several months, I was hardly even blogging with just one or two posts a month. I’m so glad I decided to start this blog before I left and that I’ve mostly kept it up to date and informative. It’s been an incredible tool to learn and share new things, as well as for meeting other travelers.
These are some of my favorite posts from my last year of travel, if you want to play a bit of catch-up…
- My very first post from abroad! In Madrid, Spain, I write down my thoughts on the short time before flying out of the country.
- After one week abroad, and then again, one month abroad, I shared a few of my thoughts & things that I learned: on money, trip planning, what I packed and more.
- After concluding four weeks in Spain, I tell all: how much I spent and my favorite places to see.
- An early lesson I learned while running around in Andalusia was to not fret about the small stuff.
- I stayed in the popular tourist mecca of Seville for just a few days but it left a big impact.
- The first place I visited in my ten days in Morocco was the beautiful blue medina of Chefchaouen.
- Marrakesh quickly became one of my most favorite cities. I just fell in love with the sights & the sounds of the beautiful city. I also found quite a bit of design inspiration.
- Despite all the temples and pyramids, one of the sites I was most interested to visit in all of Egypt was the Alexandra Library. It didn’t disappoint!
- The Sinai peninsula is home to one of my most favorite beach towns of the entire trip: Dahab where I sat and did nothing but talk to other people, read books & watch the moon rise each night over Saudi Arabia.
- I also saw my most favorite sunrise of the past year on the peninsula – from the top of Mt. Sinai.
- One of the best “tourist” things I did in the country was a Breaking the Silence tour to the South Hebron Hills. Highly recommended!
- While the white chalk cliffs of Rosh Hanikra were absolutely stunning, the grungy streets of the very hipster Tel Aviv is truly what I’d call beautiful.
- From a political perspective, I’ve covered the nature of fear and its affect on people, and the responsibility of travelers to Israel to know that their travels do have an affect.
- And a personal favorite from Israel: Tel Aviv was a test.
- Just like Israel opened my eyes to very new ideas & experiences (political & personal), India brought me many more unexpected and incredible sights from the moment I arrived.
- From witnessing police brutality in Delhi one day and seeing the sunrise at the Taj Mahal the next day, India never disappointed and always surprised.
- Gokarna was one of a handful of beach towns I spent more than just a few days in. The beaches of India have turned out to be some of my most favorite and in this video I give a tour of one of my many beach huts.
From Southeast Asia
- My first impressions of Bangkok may not have been so surprising to some, but for me, who was already expecting good things, it still floored me.
- Traveling in another developing country, responsible travel became my slogan once more. That’s why I visited the Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai.
- Songkran in Bangkok was my fourth New Year’s celebration this year – and probably my favorite!
- From taking the slow boat to Laos, being scammed at the Thai-Cambodian border and making some silly travel videos in Cambodia, Southeast Asia has been a lot of fun! And there’s still a lot more to go.
And some other stuff…
- Turns out I’m pretty interested in making a difference in the world. Seems like it came out of nowhere once I started traveling, but maybe it’s been a part of me for a while and I was just ignoring it. Regardless, I contributed three small ways to make a big difference to an online eBook collection.
- With my new-found spirit to change the world, I also found my voice defending my desire to leave home and travel long-term.
- I swear I’m not always so high-minded. I like the fun stuff, too and that’s why I started a series about hipster cities around the world.