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Our RTW Itinerary: Middle East and Asia

Railay, Thailand

After traveling through North and South America, Africa and Europe, we’ll have a short stay in the Middle East, before capping off the final leg of our journey in Asia.

We put some thought into skipping the Middle East entirely, but it actually makes sense to stop in on the RTW ticket, plus the Bear has many friends from that neck of the woods. We’ve already got free accommodation sorted out in Jordan, not to mention that it’s the 200th anniversary of Petra’s discovery (who knew?)

Istanbul – Amman – Cairo
Overland: Amman –  Dead Sea – Petra – Lebanon – Israel – Amman (not necessarily in that order)
Overland: Cairo – Alexandria – Giza – Sharm el Sheik – Cairo

After traveling overland through Europe for 4 or 5 months, we’ll resume using our RTW ticket by flying from Istanbul to Amman to Cairo. We’d initially thought to book these as one way tickets separate from our RTW ticket. Distances are small, so it should be affordable, right? Wrong. Three one way tickets priced out at about $550 each! Adding it to the RTW ticket? just $100 each. This was definitely one situation where it paid off to be super psychotically anal-retentive about research. $900 worth!!

We’ll basically just be flying through Istanbul, having already covered Turkey on our initial transit into Europe from Africa. From Amman, the current plan is to check out Israel (briefly because it’s expensive), and perhaps Lebanon. I’d also love to go to Syria, but we’ll have to assess the political situation when the time comes.

From there, we’ll head to Egypt, and hope that the crowds are still a little timid and fearful from last year’s riots. Nothing beats traveling in tourist hotspots when they’re a little less busy.

Cairo – Mumbai
Overland – Train, Bus: Northern India

We’re planning on spending at least 6 weeks exploring the northern part of India. There’s so much to see AND it’s super cheap. The last time I traveled India, I only spent about $20/day, and this was without really watching my budget too much. Given that it’s almost a year away, this part of our itinerary is, as of yet totally unplanned. We’ll just go with the flow – a necessity for retaining sanity while traveling in India anyways!

Mumbai – Bangkok
Flight: Bangkok – Bali/Jakarta
Overland/sea: Indonesia
Flight: Indonesia – Koh Samui
Flight: Koh Samui – Bangkok

We chose to add just one Asian destination to our RTW ticket, because discount airlines in Asia are amazing. We’ll definitely be able to fly for very cheap on Air Asia or something similar. And since Thailand is our last destination before heading back to Seoul, it made sense to use Bangkok as a base for our Asia travels.

We’ve traveled through most of Southeast Asia already, but still need to tick Indonesia and Myanmar/Burma off our list…so that’s what we’ll be doing with the last few months of our trip.

Our very last stop is in Koh Samui (where we got married!), only this time, the plan is to do a cleanse at someplace like the Spa Resorts. Gotta get rid of whatever we picked up on our travels!

Bangkok – Seoul

And we’re home…one year later.

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