Chris and I have been traveling together for more than 6 years and have seen five different continents and countless countries. One might think that the fun and glamor of travel would have worn off by now. Not the case. I literally found myself in spontaneous tears at the thought that we’ll be boarding a plane bound for some of our favorite destinations in less than a week.
You’re probably thinking, “How can you do a RTW trip in just six weeks?” Well, while we might not be visiting a TON of countries, we’re still quite literally traveling around the world. What started as a quick visit to Greece for a conference has splendidly spiraled into an adventure that will take us across Europe and Asia.
October 21-27. Athens, Greece.
On Tuesday we’ll be jumping on a plane bound for Athens for the annual European Travel Blogger’s Exchange conference (TBEX). This conference is geared towards new media people in travel. We’ve attended TBEX before, once in Keystone and once in Toronto, and loved meeting with fellow travel bloggers in the industry. It’s a great chance to network with travel-minded companies and to make new friends who understand the craziness of the biz.
This TBEX will be a little different as it’s the first time we’re attending in Europe. We’re also giving the Saturday Keynote. To say that we’re thrilled would be an understatement. Our session will focus on how travel blogging has shifted over the years and the future of travel videos. If you’re attending TBEX Athens, be sure to stop by and say hi!
October 27-31. Cruise to Greek islands and Turkey.
Immediately following TBEX we’re setting off on an ICONIC Aegean 4-day cruise with Louis Cruises. We’ll be cruising to the islands of Mykonos, then to Kusadasi in Ephesus, Turkey. From there, we’ll sail to Patmos, where Saint John wrote the book of Revelation and then on to Rhodes, Crete, and Santorini. Epic doesn’t even fully describe this cruise. We’re so grateful that we get the chance to see more of Greece and visit part of Turkey for the first time.
October 31-November 2. Eurail train ride to Croatia.
One of our favorite ways to explore Europe is by train. On our previous European adventures we used Eurail passes to get us to France, Austria, Hungary, and Italy. It’s both a scenic and comfortable way to travel. Plus, the Eurail Global Pass allows riders up to ten travel days to explore as many countries as they want.
Originally, we planned on stopping in Sofia, Bulgaria or Belgrade, Serbia on our way to Croatia. Unfortunately, it looks like we won’t have enough time to stop in either. We decided that we’d rather fully explore each destination than spend just a few hours in each. It looks like we’re just have to plan a trip back in the future. There are no losers here.
As soon as we’re back on land from our cruise, we’ll hop on a train to Thessaloniki. From there, we’re left with the task of figuring out how to get to Croatia. All of our internet research has left us more confused than before. Our main issue is that our Eurail passes won’t work through Serbia. We’ll be sure to keep you posted on this train adventure. Here’s hoping we make it to Zagreb by November 3rd!
November 3-November 8. Croatia.
We purposefully planned our trip to Croatia to coincide with my birthday. Croatia is one of my favorite countries and there’s nowhere else I’d rather ring in my 29th year.
The plan is to spend the first couple of days in Zagreb before we pick up our rental car and make our way to Opatija. On the way, we’ll be sure to spend some time taking in the beauty of Plitvice National Park. After a few days spent exploring and relaxing in Opatija, we’ll head to Istria to stuff ourselves silly with truffles. The best part is a friend that we haven’t seen in years will be meeting up with us for part of the journey. It’s going to be one epic road trip!
November 8-November 10. Slovenia.
Slovenia is a new country for both Chris and me. We’ll have a few short days to explore as much as Ljubljana as we can. The best part? We’ve schedule a fun photo shoot with Flytographer. This is a great new way to take back souvenirs from a trip. Not only will we have new pictures to frame when we get home, but our photographer is local and will be able to show us all of the best kept secrets in the area.
November 11-November 13. Rome, Italy.
We’re putting our Eurail tickets to good use by hopping on a train bound for Rome after our time in Slovenia. We’ll have less than 48 hours in the city but I plan on spending most of those hours smothering things in truffle oil and then eating them. OK, maybe I’ll stick to lasagna and other forms of pasta. Either way, it won’t be a success until I’m at least 2 pound heavier. Don’t worry, I plan on a little run or two through the city before we leave.
November 13-19. Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka is another new country for us. We’re headed there as guests for the first TBC Asia Travel Blogger’s Conference. We’re going to spend four days exploring the country and learning how to improve this here blog. We were thrilled to be chosen by the sponsors, Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts and SriLankan Airlines and can’t wait to share our experiences in this new destination.
November 19-27. Thailand.
This will be our third time in Thailand and we couldn’t be more stoked. The first few days will be spent exploring Bangkok and visiting the Chatuchak weekend market. We’ll then hop on a plane bound for Chiang Mai where we’ll eat all the pad thai and tom kha gai. All of it. The best part of our trip to Thailand? A day spent at Chiang Mai’s Elephant Nature Park. We don’t have a lot of regrets when it comes to travel, but one of the few is not better educating ourselves on responsible animal tourism. We don’t want our readers to make the same mistake and are excited to share our experiences at ENP.
While in Thailand, we’ll also be meeting up with our friend May, who we’ve seen in various places around the world. I first met May in her home country of Bahrain. We saw her again in South Korea, then France, and the last time we saw her was in the States for our wedding. I actually don’t think we’ve ever seen her in the same country twice. It will be fun to show her our favorite spots in Thailand.
November 27-29. Hong Kong.
This is another country that Chris has been to before but will be a first for me. We only have a few days in Hong Kong (it’s more of like an extended layover) but I’m excited to explore and, you guessed it, eat. We know that there are currently pro-democracy protests happening right now but we’ve promised our families that we would be extra vigilant. We also have a few friends that live in or around Hong Kong. Here’s to hoping we’ll be able to meet up with at least a few of them!
November 29. HOME.
There it is. After our whirlwind RTW adventure, we’ll find ourselves back home… just a few days after my favorite holiday. Luckily for us, our families are accustomed to us missing holidays and we’ll have another Thanksgiving once we’re acclimated to the time change. I can assure you that as soon as we’re back home, we’ll immediately begin stocking our apartment with all things Christmas (read: it’s already started). Gingerbread houses will be built, stockings hung with care, and a fresh Christmas tree will take its place front and center in our living room.
So what do you think? Is this fast-paced trip your style or would you rather spend more time exploring and really getting to know a destination? Let us know in the comment section below.