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Hesitating between S-America, India and Asia

Travel Forums General Talk Hesitating between S-America, India and Asia

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11. Posted by Degolasse (Travel Guru 823 posts) 7y

Quoting BelgianBoy

Wow thats great!!!

So you think it's worth it? I mean, a long trip versus two weeks holidays ? It's a huge step for me thats why Im asking.

I think this is a funny questions. Asking members of a travel forum if traveling is worth it is a bit like a choir if they like music. Don't think anyone on here is going to tell you to stay home. I think we'll agree that a two week vacation is just a two week vacation, whereas a 6 month jaunt through Asia or South America is a experience and a great opportunity to see the world. So don't hesitate, get out there and do it.
I would say that South East Asia is the place to go first. It's cheap and that much money will go for many months if not a year. There's loads to see, beaches, history, culture, great food, and loads of other people to meet. You'll have a hard time avoiding touristy places, but if you want to get off the beaten track, there are places.
India is also great. You're money will go further, the food is just as good, there is an even greater range of things to see, and there are more chances to get off the beaten path. I think it's a bit challenging for a first time solo trip, but if you are up for it, it's an ever greater experience than South East Asia.
South America is also a good choice. It's not quite as cheap as Asia, though your money can go pretty far in Bolivia and Peru, and I think even Argentina. There's loads to see and it's pretty easy to get around. So it's also great for a first time trip.
So really, all three are good options. What it comes down to is which place is most interesting to you. Only you can make that decision.

12. Posted by pigeonhole (Budding Member 9 posts) 7y

"Bangkok to Brussels on public transport" ...wow! through Afghanistan, Iran and other "pleasant " countries...provided there are public buses all along the way, which I strongly doubt...
I'd probably give it a try if someone paid me, but he should have to fork off at least
half a million $§

13. Posted by loubylou (Travel Guru 664 posts) 7y

Quoting pigeonhole

"Bangkok to Brussels on public transport" ...wow! through Afghanistan, Iran and other "pleasant " countries...provided there are public buses all along the way, which I strongly doubt...
I'd probably give it a try if someone paid me, but he should have to fork off at least
half a million $§

The other way overland would be from Bangkok thorugh Cambodia, into Vietnam and through China with the Trans-siberian/mongolian train to Moscow and then overland back to Brussels.

If I were you, Belgianboy I would make a list of what was important to see on this trip. What sort of culture are you interested in? If you like European culture then South America is fascinating for the European/Spanish influence, if you want something totally different then Asia is the place. If beaches don't come up top then go to South America, there is a lot to see there too. If you wanted to do something like the Inca Trail though, this would take about $300 of your budget but it was well worth it!

As a couple we spent around US$40 a day for room/food/drink/transport/trips in South America and spend about US$30-40 in Asia, depending on the country.

14. Posted by Danielsw25 (Budding Member 50 posts) 7y

Quoting BelgianBoy

Wow thats great!!!

So you think it's worth it? I mean, a long trip versus two weeks holidays ? It's a huge step for me thats why Im asking.

BelgianBoy, just wanted to offer my opinion here. Sometimes, things seem much greater than they are, and what appeals to some might not to others. Before I had ever gone traveling, the year long trips people took seemed exciting and amazing to me. I wanted to go on one, but I didn't have the money, so I took the first available opportunity I had to travel. It ended up being a two week trip to Spain. I was on a very tight budget and didn't get to do a lot of different things, but I learned a great deal about my preferences when it comes to traveling. I also got to see what staying in hostels was like and being completely alone except for people I would chance to meet in hostels or elsewhere. Even if you are the type that has few friends at home (like me), it is significantly different having NO friends (until you meet people).

I will be soon trying out a longer trip, four months in South America. I am really looking forward to this trip, but I think I am much more realistic about it because I have that other experience to base off of.

So, to the point I would like to make. Try and give yourself some options. Maybe a flexible ticket would be to your liking; something that can be cheaply changed if you need to. It would be pretty unfortunate to plan an elaborate trip only to find out that being on the road for a year isn't for you.

Don't let this kill your buzz for that epic trip though. There are plenty of people who have gone off on a long trip for their first experience and loved it. But because you are asking, I would say you should try a "practice trip" if you can. Maybe head to Greece or Turkey for two weeks and see how you like it. If you find yourself wanting more, then you have your answer. However, you might also discover that those two week holidays are perfect for you, and there is nothing wrong with that.

Best of luck.

[ Edit: Edited on 20-Jan-2009, at 14:33 by Danielsw25 ]

15. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 7y

Quoting pigeonhole

"Bangkok to Brussels on public transport" ...wow! through Afghanistan, Iran and other "pleasant " countries...provided there are public buses all along the way, which I strongly doubt...
I'd probably give it a try if someone paid me, but he should have to fork off at least
half a million $§

Lol, that is how tastes differ. If somebody gave me half a million I would probably spent a chunk of it on exactly this trip.

Heck, I would be willing to spend a very large chunk of it on a trip to Afghanistan, provided somebody could guarantee me that I would come out without a scratch.

FYI, public transport does go all the way - or I would not have suggested it. The easiest way is the mentioned SE Asia-China-Russia(Transsib)-Europe method, but there are others.

The only countries you got to circle around are Myanmar and Afghanistan. Myanmar for visa reasons and border issues and Afghanistan for security reasons. The first part of the trip, Bangkok through Cambodia, into Vietnam and to China stays the same no matter what route you take. From China you can then proceed to Kazakhstan and on to Central Asia, from which you go to either Iran, Aserbaidjan or Russia. Or you cross from China into India and proceed to Pakistan and Iran. In Iran you then get the choice of hitting Central Asia and Russia or going via Turkey to Greece.

And contrary to rumours: Iran is very safe to travel in.

16. Posted by pigeonhole (Budding Member 9 posts) 7y

And contrary to rumours: Iran is very safe to travel in.

Certainly, but women must wear a scarf, which I find outrageous (and I'm a guy)

And I maintain that you have to travel through dangerous places, not only Afghanistan, but the Ouigour
region in China, Kashmir, parts of the Asian central republics, and even southern Russian (the Caucasian Republics).
And the health and safety standards in parts of these countries are nothing close to what we are used of in the West.
It's a real adventure though, but I'm just not tempted.

17. Posted by BelgianBoy (Budding Member 8 posts) 7y

Maybe a flexible ticket would be to your liking; something that can be cheaply changed if you need to. It would be pretty unfortunate to plan an elaborate trip only to find out that being on the road for a year isn't for you.

I think that's a great advice Danielsw25!

If I were you, Belgianboy I would make a list of what was important to see on this trip. What sort of culture are you interested in? If you like European culture then South America is fascinating for the European/Spanish influence, if you want something totally different then Asia is the place. If beaches don't come up top then go to South America

And thanks for the small but very helpful summary loubylou.

And I think Ill put Iran, Afghanistan and Kazakhstan on hold for the moment, even though it sound tempting :) (i'm jewish by the way :))

Thanks for the advice. You guys made it easy for me.

Now , how to break the news to the GF is a different story :)

All the best my friends! I'll give you an update!Thanks a million

18. Posted by BelgianBoy (Budding Member 8 posts) 7y

Guys just to give you an update. 1 month ago I almost signed a 3 year cotract to rent an appartment here in Belgium.

Now, my flight is booked and I'm leaving the 5th of March for 3-4 months to SA.

La vie est trop courte....

Thanks for the help!!

19. Posted by cindyjoe (Inactive 23 posts) 7y

I would agree with SE Asia or South America. You can also spend very little money in places like Argentina and Chile. Not Brazil though, that is much more expensive.

20. Posted by tleb (Full Member 117 posts) 7y

India has my vote. India will steal a piece of you and never let go. I am scared to go back. I fear I will never leave.

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