Authored By Brian
We sat down this past weekend to hammer out our itinerary and came up with the following plan:
SF – New Zealand – Overland to Australia – Vietnam – Overland to Laos – Overland to Cambodia – Overland to Thailand – India – UAE – Tanzania – Overland to Kenya – Brazil – Peru – Costa Rica – SF
Seoul. Flying from Thailand to India, practically neighbors, involves taking a KLM flight some 4000 miles through Amsterdam. Oh.
There are two ways to look at this; either a) we are going to be sitting on a plane A LOT or b) we now have some layover opportunities we didn’t have before. I’ve never been to Amsterdam despite my time in Europe and the Africa-South America leg can route through Milan, Rome or Paris meaning we could visit my cousin in Rome before setting off to Brazil.
On the Delta award ticket, we probably don’t have enough flights to cover the places we want to see, regardless of how much we’re willing to sit on a plane. I’m not sure we have enough money to stay in Dubai either. We decided to pare back on the UAE stop and go from India to Africa.
I tried using AirTreks.com flight planner to see what an alternative source could book for us. Their flight planner tool is really great. They spit out the following (more specific) route:
San Francisco – Auckland – Overland to Melbourne – Hanoi – Overland to Saigon / Ho Chi Minh – Overland to Phnom Penh – Overland to Angkor Wat (Siem Reap) – Overland to Phuket – Overland to Bangkok – Delhi – Overland to Bombay / Mumbai – Dar Es Salaam – Overland to Kilimanjaro – Overland to Nairobi – Rio de Janeiro – Lima – Overland to Cusco – Overland to Lima – San Jose – San Francisco (Pricing started around $5k)
But they offered a “more for your money” option:
San Francisco – Los Angeles – Papeete (Tahiti) – Auckland – Overland to – Melbourne – Hanoi – Overland to – Saigon / Ho Chi Minh – Overland to – Phnom Penh – Overland to – Angkor Wat (Siem Reap) – Overland to – Phuket – Overland to – Bangkok – Delhi – Overland to – Bombay / Mumbai – Dar Es Salaam – Overland to – Kilimanjaro – Overland to – Nairobi – Dubai – Cairo – Madrid – Rio de Janeiro – Sao Paulo – Lima – Overland to – Cusco – Overland to – Lima – San Jose – Guatemala City – San Francisco (US$ 5272 to US$ 6590)
I’m thinking we’re probably biting off more than we can chew in about 6 months. Perhaps we should spend more time in SE Asia and perhaps skip Brazil to give more time in Peru and Costa Rica? Something like so:
- NZ – 3 weeks
- AU – 3 weeks
- Vietnam – Thailand – 6 weeks
- India – 3 weeks
- Tanzania – Kenya – 3 weeks (counts ~5 days for a Mt. Kili climb and remaining time for a Safari)
- Peru – 3 weeks (counts ~5 days for a Machu Picchu hike)
- Costa Rica – 3 weeks
That seems more reasonable… I don’t want to try and see any countries in a week; it’s too hard to get a feel for what’s going on. I also like to have some downtime on the road to lay on a beach or take it easy and recover from constant travelling.
Thoughts? Is this too much? Just right? Anything obvious we’re missing?