A friend and I are currently considering a career gap year and travelling around the world. We are looking to depart on our voyage in Sept '11.
Would anyone please be able to answer the following questions;
1. We were thinking that although we would like to do the 'usual' backpacking destinations (Thailand, Australia) we would also like to go off the beaten track and go to places which are a bit unusual, but amazing. Would anyone have any ideas or recommendations (e.g. Costa Rica, etc.)? We want to be able to look back on our lives in 40 years and think 'we saw the best places on earth'.
2. As an asthmatic would it affect me if we were to go to Peru (Machu Picchu)?
3. What is the best method of booking flights around the world - websites or in the actual country?
4. Depending on where we were to go how would I find out if visas were needed?
5. Our backpacking trip would not just be based on travelling, we would expect to work to earn our keep. As I am currently an English teacher - How would we go about working? (Is it best to sort work out before we went?)
I am interested in the responses to no. 3!
2) The world is a vast place and I'm sure there would be millions of 'best places on earth'
From my own limited experience, Borneo is incredible and surpsingly easy to get around with English widely spoken (in Malaysian Borneo anyway). Fky into Kota Kinabalu, climb the mountain, fly to Sandakan and from there get inland into Orang Utan country. I stayed at Kinabantang Lodge, I thinks it's a bit more developed now since I was there & years ago though. Either way there's many other places off the beaten track there especially if you have a bit more time. Also try Lesotho if you're in Southern Africa
3) RTW tickets is the cheapest way to get around the world and come with either miles or number of destinations. If you want to spend time travelling overland that is fine, just fly into eg Bangkok and out of Kuala Lumpur. A quick search online will give you dozens of operators. I've used Flight Centre before and found them to be the cheapest but you have to speak to them in person or over the phone or email a request for price etc so if you have time to do that you can tailor make your own flight schedule. Also, if in SE Asia, Air Asia offer really cheaps flights connecting KL to Taiwan, HK, Kota Kinabalu, Ho Chi Mi, Bangkok and dozens more etc so an open jaw ticket into SE Asia is a great option.
Hope this helps
1) There are many amazing and unusual places, morroco, mongolia, madagascar and thats just the m's. Grab an atlas from the school library and have a browse! (or you can just google world map!) I would start by looking at a continent then decide which countrys I am interested in.
2) Check http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294318-i3352-k1322027-Hiking_the_Inca_Trail_with_asthma-Machu_Picchu_Sacred_Valley.html
3) Use websites to research flights in most countrys then compare to a local agent. websites are generally more competitive. Flight centre will beat a price if you can prove that you can buy cheaper elsewhere which I have done before.
4) Just google it. eg; Peru embassy uk
5) Are you serious? english teaching jobs are in demand all around the world, again google it. You can find all of this online. I imagine that you would get a work visa easily in mosts countrys.
1) I would say Patagonia or Chile if you like incredible mountains, amazing landscapes.
In the East Asia area I would recommend Laos or Burma (Myanmar) instead of the very touristic Thailand.
3. Flightcentre do good deals but you have to prebook all yoour flights so then your restricted to you schedule
4. I agree just google that countrys embassy and you will find out if a visa is needed
5. Far east are in urgent need of english teachers you will defo get some work
As for 1. best ask your doctor or look up any type of allergens that can affect you asthma
1) "Touristy countries" are only touristy as long as you go to the touristy places. There are lots of awesome places in Thailand though lots of tourists go there. And lots of the touristy places deserve to be. That being said, getting off the tourist route is not necessarily about branching far off into different countries, but can be about going a few kilometers off the road. If you take your time and are adventurous, even a trip that takes you to the normal places, can end up abnormal, in a good way...
2) No idea.
3) It's cheap to book flights in SE Asia when you get here.
4) You can ask here (Thai, no visa needed, 15 days allowed for arrival over land, 30 by plane), Laos (visa on arrival), Cambodia (visa on arrival), Vietnam (visa needed in advance, easy to get in neighboring countries) etc...
5) Figure out work when you arrive somewhere you want to work.