Hello all, I could use some opinions on a trip I'm currently planning. In August I will be finishing three years teaching and living in South Korea. Before heading back to the US I want to travel for 6-8 months. I will have about 10,000 usd saved. I'm currently toying with two different routes.
The first would be to fly to Istanbul and travel for about 45 days in Eastern Europe. I'm thinking of including Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, And Ukraine. Then I would head to Moscow and catch the Trans Siberian to Mongolia. Then onward to China and eventually SE Asia ending in Singapore. The plan would be to do this all overland. Now my biggest concern is the weather. I now Russia, Mongolia, and China won't be too warm in October-January. I know it would make more sense to start in Asia, but then I would be in Mongolia and Russia in Jan/Feb which doesn't sound like fun!
My second is to start in Mongolia and then make my way down to Australia going through China, SE Asia and maybe Papua New Guinea.
I'd love to heard any opinions on these two trips. Pros? Cons? Anything you think could help me make a decision.
Thanks in Advance
#1 lb_19_89 has been a member since 19/2/2014. Posts: 2
If you want to do the Europe-Russia-Mongolia-China route then it's very easy to do most if not all by train.
We travelled from the UK to Saigon by train, with stop-offs at some key locations. If you haven't visited it already, www.seat61.com is a fabulous resource for all things trains. As you have plenty of time, you can save about 30% of the train fares by not booking in advance but buying tickets as you go.
Irkutsk is a great stop off in Siberia, close to Lake Baikal, the largest freshwater lake in the world. Frozen or thawed it offers interesting things to do. Just avoid the few weeks when it's freezing/defrosting as you can't take a boat or a car on it at those times!
Why not start in SE Asia and work your way backwards to Europe? Get a flight from S Korea to Saigon or Hanoi and then go north? That way you could avoid most of the really cold spell in China/Mongolia/Russia.
$10,000 for more than 5 mths might be a stretch. 5 mths gives you $65 a day. You wouldn't want less than that. Room $30, food and drinks $20 leaving you $15 for transport and other things. Sharing a room would help but if solo you'd want at least that amount.
AbigailatPenhandInk: seat61.com is a great site. I use it all the time. As for starting in SE Asia, if I did that I would want to start in Singapore. I think either way I go I will have to deal with the cold. But thanks for you insight.
LeonardCohen1: I have done quite a few calculations and it should be enough I think. I defiantly won't be spending $30 for a room. I am planning on mostly staying in dorms and from what I've seen they are at the most $25 and mostly under $15-18. Either way thanks for you comments.
#6 lb_19_89 has been a member since 19/2/2014. Posts: 2