Since getting back to the USA after spending a year in Southeast Asia we are still wrapping our heads around all the things we did and sorting through pictures. But while riding around on buses during our last days of travel in India, we penned this list of basically all the frequently asked questions we were getting from people.
So in case we haven’t had a chance to sit down together in person with a cup of tea, here are some of the most common things people have asked us about. If we missed any of YOUR questions, please let us know below! 🙂
Favorite Country with Food:
Thailand. We find it very difficult to say we have ‘favorites’ but Thailand wins for best overall food. Thailand had the freshest and healthiest food of all while traveling. We are now huge fans of Thai food.
Scary Travel Incident:
Chris getting bite by a stray dog in Thailand and needing to get rabies shots. You can read about the story here, but spoiler alert: everything turned out ok! In fact, dealing with this occurrence in Thailand was one of the easiest places to deal with this turn. We ended up getting a lot of travel memories
Number of Countries Traveled to:
Smallest Country Visited:
Brunei. If you haven’t heard of Brunei before, it’s ok, I wasn’t that familiar either. It’s a small country situated on the island of Borneo and you can read more about it here. While out at a remote research station in the jungles of Borneo, we met an awesome new friend who does tons of amazing work for and founded 1StopBorneo promoting wildlife education. Travel can bring some amazing people into one’s life.
Largest Country Visited:
India. Incredible India is huge and has a huge population. This was a very busy and sensory overwhelming country to visit. However, searching for tigers in Kanha National Park was amazing and I would go back in an instant to repeat just that.
Poon Hill, Nepal at 3210 meters/ 10,532 feet.
Diving about 30 meters under water at the dive site Sipidan off the shores of Semporna, Borneo, Malaysia.
Longest Bus Ride:
18+ hours from Bardia National Park in Nepal back to Kathmandu. During this long bus ride Chris got curry dumped all over his big backpack at the the back of the bus. Everything about going to Bardia turned out to be epic.
Number of Flights:
Ten. Don’t forgot to always sign up for airline deals. I would have never thought we would have amassed enough points to make it worth while for what felt like a small amount of flying. Yet we were able to save over $70 USD using our rewards points with Air Asia and that was equivalent of one free flight for us. We do use Sky Scanner to look for good flights.
Items Lost then Found:
Tiff’s underwear. This seems to be a recurring thing when we travel. For those that have read our Favorite Gear for Traveling post, you know we travel with Exofficio underwear and they are a bit pricey. So when I lose them it’s quite a bummer. Over the course of this trip we varied between washing our own clothes and then dropping them off at little laundry shops. Although sometimes it took four days for them to find their way back to me, I did always get my underwear back during this trip.
Additional Wardrobe Items Acquired:
Tiff: socks, underwear, athletic shorts, two tank tops, long pants, sports bra, down jacket, flip flops and chacos.
Chris: down jacket and a hat (because his other hat got too moldy).
(Chris would like me to point out that I acquired an entirely new outfit while he has the better foresight to know exactly what he both needed and wanted for this trip – go Chris.)
Number of Time with Food Poisoning:
Maybe three? It’s hard to say for sure. But we are pretty sure we got sick from a food stall in Angkor Wat in Cambodia, one place in Myanmar, and India. Just all over India we felt bad. We tried to eat at “nicer tourist” places, but our stomachs took a hit in India.
Number of Times with Shared Bathrooms:
Very few. I don’t know exactly, but the majority of the trip we had a private room in a guest house with private bathroom. When we stayed out at a research station in Borneo, sure, there we had shared bathrooms. But almost all our accommodation for this trip we booked through Agoda for $10-15 USD per night. Almost all our rooms were nice, basic, budget friendly rooms and we had private bathrooms.
Did we ever feel in real danger:
No. Although there is sometimes nothing you can do if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time and something bad happens to you, there are a lot of ways that as travelers we can take proactive steps to not having problems while traveling. I’m telling you, one of the biggest ways to avoid ‘traveler horror stories’ is to be mindful with your drinking. So many travelers that have had something bad happen, whether they had their stuff stolen, been robbed, or even forgotten their items somewhere, it’s some how related to drinking and often being out late. It’s not my place to tell you what to do or not do, but that is one of my consistent observations is those that practice control and heightened awareness with their drinking generally have much fewer problems while they travel.
Poon Hill, Nepal – the lowest temperature for us was approximately 0 degrees C or 32 degrees F – cold enough to frost and snow!
(Note: we did not climb to this mountain top – this is wayyyy serious climbing – but we did have this view from Poon Hill.)
India – our hottest temperature was approximately 30 degrees C or about 90 degrees F.
Oh that is so hard to say. There were just so many cool and awesome places that we saw wildlife. A few highlights are laid out in this post, the Kinatabatagan River our time in Danum Valley, renting a car and spending a week self driving around Khao Yai National Park in Thailand and enjoying how surprising Nepal was in the most delightful ways.
Zero. If we went back to try and change one thing, it would alter the whole outcome of this Southeast Asia trip. Sure, when we first went to Indonesia looking for komodo dragons the town we chose was not zen like or relaxing at all. In retrospect it would not have been our first stop after all, BUT, because we went there, did not feel relaxed at all, our path led us out to the Gili Islands where we relaxed for nine days at an awesome place with a pool. It was there we met Bek and Dave who are now some of our best traveling friends and I talk with all the time.
There are countless other stories like that. So would we change anything, no. We went into this trip to see what we would find and through all the the highs and lows we found one grand adventure.
We were just beyond grateful to have the ability to go on this year long trip and thank so many of you for following along on this journey too. Although facebook allows it to be so easy to post a picture of something cool and we can all look and just be like, ‘Oh wow – that is amazing!’ for me, traveling is one of the only ways I can make sense of the world.
Traveling shows me we are all human. Traveling shows me a completely different reality than what gets depicted in movies or on the news. Conversely by traveling, I show people a completely different perspective of the stereotypes of my own culture. I see my own culture from the perspectives of other countries. For me, I feel that by traveling I am living…and this life after all was meant for living.
So what are you living for and what sparks the definition of one grand adventure for you?
And did we miss any other questions you may have?
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