Part of the beauty of this trip is that there is no agenda. No defined itinerary. No checklist of things to see. And nothing stopping us from staying somewhere we want to explore for as long as we want and only moving on when we’re good and ready.

That said, we still felt we needed a rough idea of the path we would be taking (especially to pick a starting point).  So we created this rough (or pseudo) itinerary.

We tried to take into account the location and timing of events in our bucket list, our desire to travel slowly, weather conditions, and visa rules.  Our hope was that the result would give us the ability to answer the oft asked question, “Where are you going and when will you be back?”

Our little exercise produced an itinerary stretching out to the summer of 2014.  At the start, we had no idea that we would be planning out this far.  We also had no idea that we wouldn’t fit in half of the places we wanted to visit.

Although neither of us are willing to put an end date on our trip, we decided to quit planning once we hit the summer of 2014 for a couple of reasons.  First, three years seems like a long time from now.  As neither of us are committed to following this itinerary, there’s not much point in going further.  More than likely the whole thing will need a major revision after the first month.  Second, no matter how we look at it we’re going to be broke in three years unless we stop to work, an act that would screw up our itinerary and force another major revision.

We probably would have stopped planning way sooner, but 2014 was the earliest we could sensibly fit in horseback riding through Mongolia.  Mike refused to accept any form of an itinerary that didn’t include Mongolia.  He’s a bit obsessed.

Without further ado, we present our Rough Itinerary laid out in chronological order by ROYGBIV (Why the colours of the rainbow?  Ashley’s a teacher.  She’s a bit obsessed too. Enough said.):

Rough Itinerary

Rough Itinerary Map - Click for larger image

The “Plan?”

It’s probably worth noting that the countries listed below are not a checklist, nor a limiting factor – we tried to define various regions that we would be spending time in, not necessarily the specific countries.

1. Mexico, Belize, Guatemala (July – August 2011)
2. Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia (August – November 2011)
3. Chile, Argentina (December 2011 – March 2012)
4. England, France, Switzerland, Italy (April 2012 – June 2012)
5. The Balkans [Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, Hungary, Roumania, Bulgaria, Moldavia,Macedonia, Albania], Ukraine, Turkey (July 2012 – August 2012)
6. Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon (September 2012 – October 2012)
7. Africa [Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, South Africa, Madagascar, Botswana, Namibia, Angola] (November 2012 – June 2013)
8. Spain, Portugal, Morocco (July 2013 – August 2013)
9. Nepal, India (September 2013-December 2013)
10. Burma, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pupa New Guinea, Philippines (December 2013 – May 2014)
11. Mongolia (June 2014)

Possible extension:

There are still plenty of countries we’d like to visit that we couldn’t seem to fit into this tight three year timeline.  We listed many of them here.  This list is not complete, we have in no way decided not to travel to a country because it did not make this list.

12. Korea
13. Russia
14. China
15. Bhutan
16. Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, England, Ireland, Scotland
17. Norway, Finland, Sweden,
18. Greenland, Iceland

9 Responses to “Rough Itinerary”

  1. Amy says:

    The sounds like a great itinerary. You know what you would like to see, but it’s not set in stone, so you can change your route after you get going. Flexibility is a great thing to have- especially on a long trip like yours! Have a great time!!! 🙂

  2. Leanne says:

    I highly recommend Vienna, Austria if you do decide to go around there 😉

    And if you’re in the UK, Belfast (Northern Ireland) is super interesting 🙂

    • Mike Lenzen says:

      Thanks for the advice. We don’t have a lot of Western Europe on our itinerary, aside from our walk. I think we’ll need to look into some sort of long stay visa so we can see a bit more of Europe at some point.

  3. Bryan says:

    Sounds like an awesome plan guys! I hope you do end up making it to Mongolia, even though it seems like it will take you a long time to get there. You should also consider more countries in West Africa, but not at the expense of cutting anything else out. Maybe you should just make it even longer!

    • Mike Lenzen says:

      Hmm, maybe we’ll have to look into West Africa a bit more. Any places in particular that you suggest?

      As for making the trip longer, It’s already happening. We’re only 3 months in, and already 2 months behind. By the looks of it this schedule needs a serious re-work, as I doubt we’ll get out of South America much before the spring of 2013 at this rate.

  4. anjanagaba says:

    Hi guys ,

    interesting is the style of your living. The time you come to India and need any help or information you can write into me

  5. jen says:

    I’m so happy you added the Camino to your plans! Most difficult, yet most rewarding journey I’ve undertaken so far in my life! The friends and memories you make will last a lifetime!

    • Mike Lenzen says:

      The camino has been pretty amazing so far.

      It’s kind of embarrassing looking back at this list of where we “planned” on going. So far we’ve been quite good at adding new things, and quite poor at doing what we said we were going to.

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