A RTW Itinerary That Doesn’t Include Thailand

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Where are you going?

With a little more than a week until my RTW I pretend that I know the answer.

I usually rattle off a well versed: Starting in Mexico, traveling through Central and South America. Some friends actually want to know the specific countries so I try to rhyme off my best geographical knowledge although I often forget El Salvador.

The truth is that I really don’t know.

While my job and life often require me scheduling everything down to my Saturday afternoon naps, I didn’t want to schedule this trip.

It would be a colossal task that would be completely unrealistic.

In previous holidays I harboured intense jealousy for long-term travellers who had no itinerary and just took it day-by-day whereas I had my 2 week trip planned out by the hour.

Now it’s my turn.

I do have a general idea but it’s open to change.  There are three instances where wonderful people are coming to meet up with me for a short time so I’ve committed to those dates, but otherwise I have an unplanned route:

I fly with a one-way ticket from Toronto to Cancun. I’ll spend a few days there to get settled with the massive anxiety that I’m actually doing this.

I have no idea where I’m going after Cancun. I know I’d like to see Oaxaca, Belize and Guatemala for Spanish lessons. But they’re all so close I’m not sure of the best route. My plan is to find out while I’m there.

From there I’m tentatively thinking:

• El Salvador
• Honduras at the end of May as Curious George and his owner are coming to visit and scuba dive
• Nicaragua
• Costa Rica
• Panama
• Colombia
• Ecuador at the end of August to see my wonderful Sister and brave Mother
• Bolivia
• Paraguay
• Uruguay
• Peru in October as Curious George and his owner return to tackle Machu Picchu
• Chile
• Argentina

After that I’m really not so sure. It should be around December. I’d like to go to Africa but I heard it will break the bank.

I’d also really like to do yoga in India. And my biggest wish is to see Mongolia.

But that is all so far away.

You notice I don’t have the backpacking haven of South East Asia. Ten years ago I lived in the Philippines and two years ago I visited Thailand/Cambodia/Vietnam.

They were amazing and I’d love to go back, but as with any RTW trip you have to make sacrifices and this time Thailand doesn’t make the cut.

Join the Conversation

  1. Chris - The Aussie Nomad says:

    Like your plan Ayngelina. Everybody seems to start in Thailand lately so will be good to see a blog about something different. Have fun I’m not far behind you.

  2. Great stuff – South America should be a great adventure. Looks like you’re hitting quite a bit of it.

    It’s so exciting that you’re so close!!

  3. Not planning too much is definitely the way to go. You’ll figure it out as you go. I would really recommend India (and Sri Lanka & Nepal) after South America though. It’s an incredible place.

    We are heading North from Buenos Aires in May so we may bump into you along the way. Have fun!

  4. I’m glad to see South America getting some love, especially places like Bolivia and Paraguay, that are often neglected by travelers.

  5. Ayngelina Author says:

    @TheAussieNomad – I love posts about Thailand, the stories always make me laugh.

    @Joel – Thanks! I am so close that it doesn’t feel real. I’m still in a bit of denial.

    @Erin – I’m really looking forward to your posts. Your apartment in BA looks amazing!

    @Kelsey – Bolivia and Paraguay are a bit out of the way but I think because of that they may provide the most interesting experiences.

  6. ann wellwood says:

    I’m excited to follow your journey , and even though I would never do it I can see it through your eyes!I wish you the very best of times and hope your trip will be all that you expect it to be and much more!!

  7. Very cool start to your trip. You’re sure to have some deep travel experiences with all of the time you’re spending Central America.

  8. Mongolia is my dream as well! Probably not going to make it this time around but I would love to go at some point.

    Your itinerary looks neat. I can’t believe you are starting so soon!

  9. This is actually my dream trip. I hope you make it to Costa Rica while I’m still here!

  10. You can write a book on South America when you’re done. You’ve pretty much done it all at that point.

    South Africa has a great exchange rate. Food is inexpensive. Egypt is magnificent. Ethiopia has some very interesting historical sites. Morocco has the wonderful souks and culture.

    Don’t skip Africa bc you think it is expensive. Like all things you can find your way around it and get the bargains.

  11. Cornelius Aesop says:

    Are you nervous/curious at what Chile may bring since the earthquake? As for Peru I only spent two weeks there and didn’t even make it to Machu Pichu, don’t forget about all the other great sites to see. Plus there is a whole other large country just a little further west your skipping over, if you want to try your luck with a different language.

  12. woot woot one week left. Tres exciting. can’t believe you’re about to take off.

    just something to consider in your itinerary, if you want to fly to africa it’s best to end in BA but if you want to fly to Asia end in Santiago to save a bit on air fare. or you can fly Malaysia Air from Ba to Cape Town and then Cape Town to Malaysia.

    Africa is definitely more expensive than Latin America but glad to report that Uganda is our cheapest country by far at about $65 per day for both of us.Either we’ve gotten used to the prices on this side or smarter or neither and it’s actually getting cheaper. I’m told Ethiopia will be another cheapie.

  13. Nomadic Chick says:

    The anxiety is probably like you said, your current life is so planned, and now you will have all this time to breathe. It could be gratifying for you. The entire week I was off – never felt so content to fiddle with my site, nap, read, write…

    And Thailand is cool, but there’s nothing wrong with starting anywhere else. 🙂

  14. Sofia - As We Travel says:

    Yeeah, that’s the way to go!! 😉 I like it that you don’t plan too much in advance like so many others, a little space for uncertainty is always refreshing, and much more exciting!

  15. Awesome itinerary! My first draft started in South America, but now I’ll be ending there instead. India/Nepal are big on my list as it stands now. But flexibility is key!

  16. Kirsty - No Place To Be says:

    This sounds like a great itinerary, and I definitely subscribe to not planning every detail. Our trip is going to include Thailand although not until around 6 months in so plenty of other stories will come first!

    I bet you can’t wait now less than a week to go!

  17. Dave and Deb says:

    Have a great time on your RTW trip. We tend to be very loose with our itineraries as well. We did the same thing when we toured Central America, but we did encounter one problem. We ended up backtracking a few times and crossing the border of Belize 3 times! We were terrible planners and it cost us money because we kept having to pay (it was like $20 at the time) a fee at the border with each crossing. We have learned the hard way that a little planning helps, but we still like to go with the flow just like you:-) Looking forward to hearing all about your travels! South America is a plan for us in the near future, so I will be checking you out regularly for advice and info! Cheers.

  18. Dian Emery says:

    Sounds like an exciting trip, Belize is definitely a must-see place. Be careful in Guatemala, my sister-in-law works there as an archeologist each summer but decided not to go this year because of the rising crime rate.

  19. Johnny Vagabond says:

    wow, sounds like an awesome route. I should be over in that area around the first of the year. first beer is on me 😉

  20. Looks like a great itinerary. I can’t wait to read about your adventures in South America!

  21. agree with brian above-don’t count africa out!! i just returned from tanzania and it was fairly inexpensive. probably not as cheap as you are going to find guatemala, nicaragua, etc, but still cheap! go go go to africa! i just found your blog today. looks like you are leaving this week? perhaps you have already left. good luck and keep posting! it will be amazing.

  22. Africa wasn’t too expensive but I haven’t been anywhere but North Africa in a decade or more. One good thing about East Africa, I always found good people and stayed with a lot of families rather than in hotels but I was in pretty remote places. If hostels seem expensive try schools and universities, back in the day you could stay in empty dorms or even sports halls relatively cheaply.

    India is my favourite place on earth, a must-see!

  23. Anastasia says:

    Ah! I’m so glad I found your blog. I’m planning my own RTW trip and haven’t decided anything past Mexico/CA/SA so it’s wonderful to see someone else going through the same thing I am, lol. And I’m really looking forward to your posts because I haven’t read all that much about the places I want to go to– everyone mostly seems to skip Latin America or they’ll only go to Machu Picchu. 🙁

    Anyway, yeah. Glad to have found you!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Thanks Anastasia, if you have any questions feel free to ask!

  24. ayngelina. what an amazing trip you are having. loved seeing you in photo with the friend that you met up with again. The colors are beautiful. Out with your Mum today getting a little color ourselves, nails and toes that is. Love looking at your sight and seeing places that I may never see. Take care
    ayn

  25. We have been reading your blog, and enjoy reading all your articles! We to are planning a RTW trip departing in under 8 months! Would love any feedback about our route and any other advice you may have! Since you lived in the Phillipines any must do info would be great!

    Thanks

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I just had a look, see my comments and go slower!

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