In 2017, my boyfriend Guil and I embarked on a 10-month trip around the world, visiting 22 countries across Europe, South America and Southeast Asia. I’ve never actually shared our ultimate around the world itinerary with anyone, and I thought it would make for a fun blog post—especially for those looking to do a similar trip around the world.
Here’s a quick overview of the trip: We started off in Paris in September 2017 and spent the following two and a half months in Europe. From there, we flew to South America to spend the holidays with our families in Brazil. Four months later, we actually returned to the U.S. for a month before going to Asia. Then in April 2018, we left to Hong Kong, the final leg of our trip. We spent three months traveling in Southeast Asia before returning home on July 9, 2018.
This was our journey.
Our Ultimate Around The World Itinerary
It was an incredible feat to visit over 20 countries and countless cities across three different continents. This trip was the singular most rewarding experience of my life, and there’s little to nothing I would change in our adventurous nearly yearlong stint around the world.
First Stop: Europe
We spent two and a half months traveling through Europe, hitting mostly big capital cities since it was only my second time traveling there. The goal here was certainly to visit as many countries as possible—so we planned the route by each picking the major cities we wanted to see the most, and then combining our lists and narrowing it down to a two-month timeline.
We traveled mostly by land, via bus, and found it to be a remarkably affordable way to travel within Europe.
Second Stop: South America
South America was a different animal. Getting around proved much more difficult (and expensive) than in Europe. We took our time here, spending a total of four months slowly making our way around the massive continent. This gave us time to visit several cities within each country — which allowed us to truly experience each individual culture, more so than in Europe, when we were hopping from country to country every few days.
Because flights are so expensive in South America, we also traveled mostly by land here. Though bus travel in many of the countries we visited isn’t as efficient as it is in Europe, it was usually the cheapest method of transportation, though sometimes flying was the only option. The longest bus ride we endured was 23 hours through the Chilean desert (and this was after a five-hour flight followed by a nine-hour layover).
Backpacking through South America definitely tests even the most experienced of travelers, but I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything in the world, that bus ride included.
Rio de Janeiro
Viña del Mar
San Pedro de Atacama
Final Stop: Southeast Asia
The final leg of our around the world trip was my absolutely favorite: Three months in Southeast Asia, including plenty of island hopping. Our time here was marked by incredible food, waterfall chasing, jungle hikes, endless beach days, surfing, scuba diving, and the most beautiful natural landscapes I’ve ever laid eyes on.
It was incredibly easy to get around in Southeast Asia, more so than in South America I’d say. The tourism industry is very much a fundamental part of the region’s economy and has been growing exponentially over the years, and the infrastructure in place for tourists clearly represents that. We traveled mostly by plane, train or boat, all at very affordable prices.
Ha Long Bay
Have I convinced you to plan your own trip? Reach out with any questions you may have — I’m here to help!
If you found this post helpful, you may also enjoy:
- The True Cost of Backpacking Around The World
- How To Plan A Trip Around The World
- How To Pack For A Backpacking Trip Around The World
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