A Travellerspoint blog

November 2021

End of the Road (for now)

Route: The World


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FEBRUARY 2016 - NOVEMBER 2020

Been

Been

When we returned from Mexico at the end of March 2020 I was optimistic that our traveling lifestyle would resume again after a few months break. During 2020 we had managed several wonderful months touring around the UK whilst all the time complying with the various Covid restrictions that were still in place (this of course has been repeated in the first part of 2021). But as the year progressed my optimism began to wain and by the start of 2021 I was beginning to think we needed a new plan. To be fair, Anne had come to this conclusion many months in advance of me but had kindly allowed me to continue dreaming.

However, by April 2021 we both agreed that the chances of going abroad in the near future was looking distinctly unlikely. We therefore sadly said goodbye to being travellers full time and began to plan for being travellers part time.
We gave notice to our tenants (up to 6 months is required under the new Covid rules) and put a new plan into place. A rejig of our long term financial plan meant we should be able to fund a house refurbishment and extensive travelling for the next three years. Those three years will hopefully commence in 2022 and find us being out of the country for 6 months of the year (not all at once but on three or four separate occasions).

So that brings us to the end of one great adventure but allows us to look forward to another in the years to come. How that adventure will unfold will be heavily influenced by how the world deals with Covid-19, as it is surely here to stay for some time to come. Climate change and the ever increasing political unrest around the world will play its part in how and where we travel. But travel we will, all the time we have our health and the funds to do so.

So that’s the end of our blogs for the moment, but as “Arnie” would say “We’ll be back”.

Personal Observations & Interesting Facts

Travel Facts & Figures

1. We travelled the world for 50 months from the start of February 2016 to the end of March 2020 (10 months short of the original plan due to Covid-19). This doesn’t include the more recent trips around the UK when Covid restrictions allowed.

2. During our 50 months we visited 37 nations, some more than once and almost all long enough to get a real feel for the local way of life. This is almost half of our life time achievement. Between us we have visit 80 nations and 5 dependancies, the vast majority together.

3. We travelled 454,219km, equivalent to the moon and half way back or over 10 times around the world. Of that, 329,337km was by air, 115,664km was over land, 2,538km by sea and 6,680 on foot.

4. We visited 6 of the 7 continents (Europe, Africa, Asia, North America, South America & Oceania) and swam in or sailed upon 4 of the 5 oceans (Pacific, Atlantic, Indian & Arctic). The only thing missing was Antarctica and the Southern Ocean that surrounds it.

5. Our farthest point north was about 82 Degrees North (Latitude). Looking for Polar Bears in pack ice off the northern coast of Svalbard, Norway. Our farthest point south 46 Degrees South (Latitude). About the most southernly point on New Zealand’s South Island.

6. The most remote location we visited would have to be Easter Island. Although it is not the least populated, sitting far out in the Pacific Ocean, it is the furthest from any major landmass. The island of Svalbard, up in the high arctic, was a strong contender for this title but its proximity to Europe ruled it out.

7. On our journey in to Atacama Andes we reached a point of 5000m above sea level (almost equalling this height in the Nepalese Himalaya) and in Mauritius we dived in a submarine to a depth of 35m below sea level. Our highest elevation in a manmade structure was 452m above sea level on the 125th floor of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.

8. The most populated city on our travels is Mexico City where over 20 million people live. At the other end of the scale, the least populated city visited is Wells in the county of Somerset, England. Wells has a population of just 12,000.

9. The wettest weather we encountered was in Milford Sound, New Zealand and the driest in the Atacama Desert, Chile where it hadn’t properly rained for years.

10. The noisiest place we visited has to be the streets of Katmandu, Nepal, where every form of transport competes for limited space in the narrow streets of the capital. By contrast our star gazing evening in the Andean Mountains of Chile has to be the most peaceful place, although when the boat was stationary it was pretty quiet up in the high Arctic.

11. Our scariest moment on our travels have two contenders. The first was disturbing a Cape Cobra which reared up and hissed, no more than a meter from us. Fortunately, it decided to escape rather than attack.
The second was an encounter with two African Elephants whilst out on a night drive. Both bulls and both in musth (a periodic condition that causes a state high aggression). We found ourselves between the two of them and although in a vehicle with a National Park a guide, we felt very unsafe. With a steep cliff in front of us and one of the Elephants getting closer and closer behind us, we had not route out. Fortunately the guide was able to call for help and eventually the elephants were persuaded to leave us alone and go play somewhere else.

12. We have often been asked what we missed most whilst travelling. For me it's not being able to watch rugby or go to any heavy metal gigs and for Anne it was the lack of comfortable pillows, vital for a good nights sleep. But having said that, these are small sacrifices compared to the amazing adventure we have just had.

13. Finally, we are often asked what was our favourite place or moment. Sometimes we offer an answer, but in truth it is impossible to choose as the whole trip was amazing and it would be wrong to single out one place or occasion.

A selection of our travel photos

Ice & Water Canmore

Ice & Water Canmore

Breathing on White Island can be difficult

Breathing on White Island can be difficult

Muddy walk (the nice part and only for a very short time)

Muddy walk (the nice part and only for a very short time)

Caution Kiwi (Okarito)

Caution Kiwi (Okarito)

Black Bear

Black Bear

Peyto Lake

Peyto Lake

Slov 036

Slov 036

Slov 057

Slov 057

Wales 061

Wales 061

Norway 124

Norway 124

Norway 155

Norway 155

Norway 192

Norway 192

Norway 273

Norway 273

Norway 245

Norway 245

Canada 093

Canada 093

Canada 088

Canada 088

Slim river and Kluane Lake

Slim river and Kluane Lake

our flight

our flight

Kaskawaslh Glacier

Kaskawaslh Glacier

Views of the Kananaskis from Highway

Views of the Kananaskis from Highway

Eagle Owl

Eagle Owl

Fish River Canyon upper rim

Fish River Canyon upper rim

Quiver Tree Forest

Quiver Tree Forest

The climb up the dune

The climb up the dune

Deadvlei

Deadvlei

Cheetah with lunch

Cheetah with lunch

Baby Elephant

Baby Elephant

Bushman in search of food

Bushman in search of food

Namibian road

Namibian road

Spitzkop

Spitzkop

Namaqualand Flowers

Namaqualand Flowers

Augrabies Falls

Augrabies Falls

Peak District

Peak District

Peak District scenery

Peak District scenery

Moon, from Elqui Valley Observatory

Moon, from Elqui Valley Observatory

Parque Nacional Pan de Azúcar

Parque Nacional Pan de Azúcar

Flamingo flight path

Flamingo flight path

Volcano Licancabur

Volcano Licancabur

Lago Pucon

Lago Pucon

One of many UNESCO church's on Chiloe

One of many UNESCO church's on Chiloe

Iguazu Falls

Iguazu Falls

Coati

Coati

Uitkyk Trail Mt Rochelle Nature Reserve

Uitkyk Trail Mt Rochelle Nature Reserve


Early View of Franschhoek Valley from Mt Rochelle

Early View of Franschhoek Valley from Mt Rochelle

King (or Giant Protea) the South Africa official Flower

King (or Giant Protea) the South Africa official Flower

Plamiet River Trail in Kogelberg Nature Reserve

Plamiet River Trail in Kogelberg Nature Reserve

Holguin

Holguin

Trinidad

Trinidad

Old American car in Trinidad

Old American car in Trinidad

Vinales countryside

Vinales countryside

Coffee making the old way

Coffee making the old way

Chacma Baboon feeding on shellfish at Olifantsbos Bay

Chacma Baboon feeding on shellfish at Olifantsbos Bay

View from the Table Mountain plateau

View from the Table Mountain plateau

View from the Table Mountain plateau

View from the Table Mountain plateau

Golf Trees in Gardens by the Bay at night

Golf Trees in Gardens by the Bay at night

Marina Bay Sands by Night

Marina Bay Sands by Night

Nong Khiaw

Nong Khiaw

Spinning the silk for the weaving

Spinning the silk for the weaving

Digging for Gold on the Nam Ou

Digging for Gold on the Nam Ou

Khamu Village

Khamu Village

No age restriction to pipe smoking in a Katu Village

No age restriction to pipe smoking in a Katu Village

Road side restaurant

Road side restaurant

Watching TV is more interesting than watching weird tourists

Watching TV is more interesting than watching weird tourists

Sculpture of clusters bombies

Sculpture of clusters bombies

KL

KL

Reflection in Taiping Lake

Reflection in Taiping Lake

Dusky Leaf Monkey

Dusky Leaf Monkey

Oriental Pied Hornbill

Oriental Pied Hornbill

Petronas Twin Towers

Petronas Twin Towers

Krka NP

Krka NP

Colourful Zagreb

Colourful Zagreb

Plitvice Lakes National Park

Plitvice Lakes National Park

Viru Bog in Lahemaa National Park

Viru Bog in Lahemaa National Park

View from le Morne

View from le Morne

Great BIG Hindu God at Grand Bassin

Great BIG Hindu God at Grand Bassin

View towards Pas de Bellecombe

View towards Pas de Bellecombe

St-Michael Mount, Cornwall

St-Michael Mount, Cornwall

Gallox Bridge, a medieval packhorse bridge across the River Avill (circa 15th Century). Gallox refers to the execution gallows on Gallox Hill.

Gallox Bridge, a medieval packhorse bridge across the River Avill (circa 15th Century). Gallox refers to the execution gallows on Gallox Hill.

Chartreuse Mountains

Chartreuse Mountains

Quinta da Regaleira

Quinta da Regaleira

Miradouro Santo Justa

Miradouro Santo Justa

Tram in Lisbon

Tram in Lisbon

Christ the Redeemer

Christ the Redeemer

Hand in the sand

Hand in the sand

Tongariki

Tongariki

Rano Raraku in morning sunlight before opening time

Rano Raraku in morning sunlight before opening time

Orongo crater

Orongo crater

Slippery conditions on the road to Tierriadentro

Slippery conditions on the road to Tierriadentro

Looking back over the Segovia Archaeological site

Looking back over the Segovia Archaeological site

One of the most well preserved underground tomb at Segovia site

One of the most well preserved underground tomb at Segovia site

Starting our descent from El Aguacate

Starting our descent from El Aguacate

Andean scenery

Andean scenery

Steep street of Comuna 13

Steep street of Comuna 13

View of the escalators (orange framed structure) in Comuna 13

View of the escalators (orange framed structure) in Comuna 13

Cockpit of sunken plane

Cockpit of sunken plane

Diver

Diver

Statues

Statues

Life size bronze statue in the centre of Bratislava

Life size bronze statue in the centre of Bratislava

Čičmany house

Čičmany house

Glacier lake at Skalnaté Pleso (1751m)

Glacier lake at Skalnaté Pleso (1751m)

Approach to Spis Castle

Approach to Spis Castle

Forth Bridge

Forth Bridge

Scotish Terrier Hamish kindly posed on top of Ben Aa'n

Scotish Terrier Hamish kindly posed on top of Ben Aa'n

Kelpies

Kelpies

Hippo taking to the water

Hippo taking to the water

Painted Dog in iMfolozi

Painted Dog in iMfolozi

Sleeping White Rhino

Sleeping White Rhino

View over Hluhluwe

View over Hluhluwe

Elephant in our "back garden"

Elephant in our "back garden"

Hike in the Drakensberg

Hike in the Drakensberg

The Amphitheatre

The Amphitheatre

Production of swazi candles

Production of swazi candles

Nile Crocodile in Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary

Nile Crocodile in Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary

Rhinos in the mist

Rhinos in the mist

Fully fed and chilling out

Fully fed and chilling out

Leopard

Leopard

Water play

Water play

Lilac Breasted Roller in flight

Lilac Breasted Roller in flight

The man at the mirador Del Roc del Quer

The man at the mirador Del Roc del Quer

Bardenas Reales, La Blanca Baja area

Bardenas Reales, La Blanca Baja area

Crossing the river in Bardia National Park

Crossing the river in Bardia National Park

Dashain Festival procession

Dashain Festival procession

From Jomsom to Chele

From Jomsom to Chele

Street view in Lo Manthang

Street view in Lo Manthang

Spinning Changra wool in Lo Manthang

Spinning Changra wool in Lo Manthang

Making yogurt

Making yogurt

Leaving Lo Manthang after yesterday snow fall on the mountains

Leaving Lo Manthang after yesterday snow fall on the mountains

Flight arriving into Jomsom airport

Flight arriving into Jomsom airport

Flying from Kathmandu to Pokhara

Flying from Kathmandu to Pokhara

Himalaya mountains view from the plane

Himalaya mountains view from the plane

A decoration in front of a house during Diwali Festival

A decoration in front of a house during Diwali Festival

Durbar Square, Patan

Durbar Square, Patan

Grand Palace

Grand Palace

Top of Sigiriya Rock

Top of Sigiriya Rock

Cave temple of Dambulla

Cave temple of Dambulla

Nine Arch Railway Bridge

Nine Arch Railway Bridge

Elephant attempting to enter reception

Elephant attempting to enter reception

What a view

What a view

Stilt fishing

Stilt fishing

Butterflies resting on a tree trunk

Butterflies resting on a tree trunk

View over the ancient mesoamerican city of Teotihuacán

View over the ancient mesoamerican city of Teotihuacán

Mercardo 77

Mercardo 77

Field of  blue agave

Field of blue agave

Geared up, ready for the Zip-line

Geared up, ready for the Zip-line

Ready to jump Zip-line

Ready to jump Zip-line

Malcolm on the Zip-line

Malcolm on the Zip-line

Road side shrine in Baja Concepcion

Road side shrine in Baja Concepcion

Loch Broom Reflection

Loch Broom Reflection

Red Deer Stag outside our bedroom window at night, very noisy rut call

Red Deer Stag outside our bedroom window at night, very noisy rut call

Smoo Cave with fresh water coming in waterfall and sea water at cave mouth

Smoo Cave with fresh water coming in waterfall and sea water at cave mouth

It's raining but still beautiful autumn colours

It's raining but still beautiful autumn colours

Glencoe, next time I may try to stay in this cottage!

Glencoe, next time I may try to stay in this cottage!

It's not only for pedestrian but cars and motorbike also use the same street

It's not only for pedestrian but cars and motorbike also use the same street

Posted by MAd4travel 14:30 Comments (1)

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