I was studying at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. I have the summer off, so I decided to do some backpacking in my time off. It would be a shame to go to Australia, to study, and not see more of Australia. Therefor I decided to go and backpack around Australia. I was browsing the web and I stumbled upon an article, by a rail travel blogger; written by a guy who travelled to Singapore from London by train. This seemed really fun to do. I always thought it a shame, that you miss out seeing so many interesting places whilst flying. As he traveled by land, he passed through so many different interesting countries and went to see places that most travellers would miss out on. This inspired me to do a similar journey. I initially wanted to travel by land from Brisbane to London; almost entirely by land (except a short flight from Darwin to Singapore, as there is no land crossing between Australia and Asia). I saw the summer as a good time to do the journey, as I had to travel back home to London anyway. I thought it would be so satisfying to know, I transversed half the world by land transport. However due to limited funds and time it was not possible for me to do so. He did not stop at many places as well to spend time to sight-see. I did not want to do this as I thought it a shame not to spend time in each of the countries, see sights there, meet people and engage in the local culture. Therefor I had to compromise and I decided to travel as far as China from Brisbane, then fly to Amsterdam to meet some friends and then fly back home, to London, with them from Amsterdam. I have posted an interactive map of my journey at the bottom of this article.
I planned to only fly between Darwin and Singapore at first. I ended up flying more than this due to time constrains and flying generally being the fastest way to get between two places. I have already posted about my first stop in Cairns, and I will write a post about each place I visit before next summer. The reason I am spreading my posts out is that, due to university, I don’t have the freedom to travel as much in the winter. At the time of writing this I was at Hua Hin. This means that the map shows how I have traveled and the places I have visited up to there. However between the Cambodian border and Hanoi I have not yet decided where I will visit and how I will travel. Therefor I have decided to put on some of the places I intend to visit. From Hanoi onwards I have already booked my transport, as I had to book my transport to and from China in advance, to obtain a visa. I also booked my flight from Amsterdam in advance as I wanted to insure I travel with my friends.
So far this has been the most amazing journey of my life. I have visited so many totally different interesting countries, met so many different people, experienced so many different things, seen so many beautiful sights and seen some stunning natural phenomena. I have also passed through so many different biomes and climates, which has provided great opportunities for me as a nature photographer. I would recommend a similar trip to anyone for the aforementioned reasons. I find when people backpack they tend to stick to one area. I prefer to travel long distances, as I feel you get to experience more that way. This may not be for everyone but I also love travelling long distances by land. I feel watching the world go by, through the window of a bus or train, gives you a sense of the scale of the world and gives you an idea of just how interesting and diverse the world is. As I continue on my adventure, I will update the map to reflect my progress. I hope, by publishing this, I inspire you and others to embark on an adventure similar to the one I am currently partaking in. If you are thinking of doing so, and are looking for help or advice, don’t hesitate to contact me. Either email me or leave a comment below.