It’s the beginning of November and we’ve officially become nomads! Many of our friends and family are now wondering what’s next. It’s a good question, and one we wish we could answer, but the truth is we intentionally haven’t planned much. Part of this journey is about not having an exact route or time frame mapped out; we want the ability to explore, grow and discover places we’ve never heard of. So, while we don’t know a lot of details, I’m happy to share the few plans we have locked down.
The month of November is dedicated to our loved ones. Currently we’re in Louisiana to visit my cousin and their new baby. I’ve only seen photos on social media and am excited to meet the little dude. This is our first time in the state though, so Tom and I decided to make a quick trip to New Orleans before heading north to meet up with everyone. I’ve always been interested in this city and can’t wait to get a taste of it (especially some beignets!). After Louisiana, we head back to Seattle for our official goodbyes before flying to Arizona, our last stopover in the US. Once in Arizona we’ll be catching up with my mother for a couple weeks. We’ve also got some college friends in the area and are hoping to meet up with them if schedules allow.
Come the beginning of December our international journey officially kicks off. We depart Arizona on the 2nd heading to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. We were originally thinking of starting in Europe, but since we’re traveling carry-on only, it’s much easier to pack warm weather clothing making S.E. Asia a better choice. Additionally, the exchange rate is in our favor, meaning any mistakes we make while getting our travel groove on will be much kinder to our budget.
Our visas are only valid for 30 days, and with wanting to embrace a slower travel pace, we decided that it wasn’t feasible to see the entire country in this first visit. While this can be feasible for some when doing a 1-2 week vacation, we know it’ll be unsustainable for the long-haul, so on this visit we’re sticking to the southern half of the country. The destinations we’ve selected are Ho Chi Minh, Da Nang, Hoi An, Da Lat and the Mekong Delta.
New Years & Beyond
At this point we don’t know what comes after Vietnam. We need to be out of the country by January 4th, so our plan is to leave right after new years. Your guess is as good as mine though as to where. Cambodia seems the easiest due to proximity and there being a popular bus route that runs across the border, but there’s so many places in Asia to consider that we could just as easily book a cheap flight elsewhere. For now, we’re content at letting this remain a mystery, but hope to put more solid thought into it over the coming weeks. Since we’ll be traveling around a holiday and high tourist season, I want to lock in the best rate possible for wherever we go.
Later in the year we have two sets of friends getting married, so those are our only planned events thus far. The first will be held in England in June, so eventually we’ll head west to Europe. The second wedding is then back in Washington in September. Assuming we haven’t spent all our savings by then, our hope is to enjoy a few weeks at home visiting with friends and family before jetting off again to continue our travels.