Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Goodbye 2012: My Year in Travel

I've been reading a lot of really great year-in-review travel posts over the past few weeks so I've been inspired to write one of my own. While I haven't logged even a fraction of the distance traveled, hours on trains and buses, time in airports and in the air, or number of cities and countries visited by others, I'm still pretty excited about that fact I got to travel this year and about all of the great things I got to see and experience, so I felt like it would be fun to take a look back. Here we go!

By the numbers
4000 Islands, Laos
  • Number of countries visited: 5
  • Number of airports involved: 11
  • Hostel, hotel or guesthouse beds slept in: 20
  • Longest flight: 16 hours, Toronto to Tokyo
  • Shortest flight: 45 minutes, Phuket to Bangkok
  • Longest train ride: 7 and half hours, Ayutthaya to Khon Kaen
  • Worst travel moment: Going from Kratie to Phnom Penh in a bursting-at-the-seams mini bus with a travel partner who had food poisoning.
  • Best travel moment: There are two. Lounging by the Mekong in lazy but lovely 4000 Islands, Laos and deciding on a whim to make Cambodia part of our travels.
  • Travel regret: Not getting to the north of either Laos or Thailand, which meant missing Chiang Mai and Luang Prabang.
  • Place I would absolutely go back to: Cambodia
  • Weirdest travel moment: Being on a hike in Laos and having locals want to get their picture taken with us.

The route
Bayon temple, Angkor Thom
Bangkok -- Ayutthaya -- Khon Kaen -- Nong Khai -- Vientiane -- Tha Kek -- Pakse -- 4000 Islands-- Kratie -- Phnom Penh -- Siem Reap -- Bangkok -- Phuket -- Ko Phi Phi -- Ko Lanta -- Khao Lak -- Khao Sok National Park -- Bangkok -- Toronto

We left for Bangkok February 3rd and after a few layover in Tokyo arrived in Bangkok around 10 p.m. and started our two month adventure. We stayed in Bangkok for five days, the first three of which involved a lot of mental breakdown due to jet lag. There were tears, there were fights and then once the jet lag wore off, we were normal people again. We moved every three to five days and packed a ton of travel into two months but every bus, train, plane or ferry ride was worth it. 

A few other 2012 travels
I also had the chance to get some sun this fall and spend four days on Providenciales, Turks and Caicos in early October and then another four days on Curacao in early November. One of my travel goals to is to visit as many islands in the Caribbean as possible and so far I'm up to seven.

2013 travel
We are planning another two month trip this winter, to Singapore and Malaysia, with a potential visit to Indonesia. No flights are booked yet, but we're aiming to leave the first week of February! I'll keep you posted on the plans.

What was your year in travel like? Where are you going next?

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