Luckily for once we can announce no total failure! Just lots of changes. Read On:
It’s nice to have some down time to plan things out. With such a busy travel schedule all summer there wasn’t a lot of extra time to do planning ahead of where we’re going to next. So now with a nice break in travel and generous relatives letting us stay at their place until we can easily figured out where to go next. With a strong and free Internet connection, access to a fantastic espresso machine and fresh groceries in the fridge, it was the perfect time to sit down and figure things out.
We had a general route figured out earlier to go through Turkey, Egypt, India and then on to Thailand and the rest of Asia. But we didn’t know the costs of travel and accommodation so it took some time to decide what we’d do next. One thing was we spent more money than expected in Europe, with the Euro to Canadian exchange rate being poor and sticker prices being the same or more as back home. Sandwiches in Ireland were €9, beers were often €5-€7 and so on. Basically, we paid the same money as we do back home on things as we did in Europe, which with anyone’s vacation plans that is not what you expect. One tends to travel to places that are cheaper then home. It wasn’t something that we had prepared for, I thought things would just be a bit cheaper. Apparently I was wrong.
We very much wanted to visit Istanbul and see the open-air markets. And go to the Valley of the Kings and view the inscriptions. See the Taj Mahjal and experience the crazy city of Mumbai. But we had to ask ourselves where we really wanted to go, and SE Asia was an area that we just couldn’t miss since it’s an area of the world we have been dreaming about for years. With a clear direction we could start making a plan of where to go and ensure the costs while traveling. With the great exchange rate the Canadian dollar gets in Asia it was looking to be a very easy place to go to on a now very tight budget.
Dee once again used her magic and managed one awesome surprise. While we were looking for the cheapest airline tickets to Bangkok she somehow found some random site we never used before with her amazing Google search skills and low and behold there was an Egypt Air flight out of Frankfurt that had a layover in Cairo that was cheaper then any other flight option on the net. After some investigation we managed to turn that layover into a 6 day stop over in Cairo! The one thing I had really wanted to see this trip was the Pyramids (especially after I saw the movie Zeitgeist), and when it was scratched off our list due to funds I was quietly disappointed. But now after seeing the chance to stay in Cairo and see the Pyramids we booked the flights right away, with the great bonus of it being the cheapest way for us to get to Bangkok!
I really don’t think we would have found this flight unless we had the time to wind down and do some searching while resting. I’m glad that Dee managed to do some good searching on the net and found it! So now our Itinerary looks something like this:
Cairo – 6 nights
Thailand – 60 – 90 days
Cambodia – 15 – 20 days
Vietnam – 20 – 30 days
Laos – 15 – 30 days
Europe has been great, but really it’s similar to life back home. I’m excited to explore something new in Asia, where both language and cultures are extremely different.