We’re a bit behind on posts due to the spotty wifi in Cambodia & Vietnam. But we have content that we’ve been working on that we will roll out as we get enough wifi to do so. In the meantime, here is our month 1 recap!
It’s hard to believe that we have been on the road for over 1 month now! November took us to two different continents, 3 countries and countless new cities and experiences. This constant movement is new for both of us and we’ve quickly realized that we prefer to move slowly and really get a feel for a country, rather than try and cram in as much as possible.
After a month, we feel we’ve gotten the constant travel thing down. It still takes us 30+ minutes to pack up our bags and the language barrier is still difficult, but we’ve gotten better at going with the flow.
We much prefer our system here in SEA of picking destinations on the fly– usually based on a random tip or where our friends are going. We don’t usually have a timetable of when we need to be where so we just leave when we’re ready as it is easy to book same day transportation. Traveling like this has given us the opportunity to see some amazing things and meet many wonderful people!
Where We Went in Month 1:
2 days in Galway | Ireland
1 day on the Aran Islands | Ireland
3 days in Cork | Ireland
4 days in Dublin | Ireland
5 days in Bangkok | Thailand
5 Days in Pai | Thailand
6 Days in Chiang Mai | Thailand
2 Days on Slow Boat | Mekong River- Thailand/Laos
Pai, Thailand– Pai was amazing. After almost 3 weeks of cities, the small rural town nestled in the mountains was just what we needed. It was the first destination we visited that we felt we could come back to again and again. The hostel we stayed at had a great vibe and we met people that we still run into all over South East Asia. We loved everything about Pai from adventuring around on our motorbike to exploring waterfalls, canyons and beautiful scenery.
November by the Numbers:
We kept track of a few of our stats for you guys. For instance, in November we slept in 9 different beds and between the two of us drank 32 pints while in Ireland! Check out the rest below:
TukTuks/ Taxis: 15
Spending time with family
It was so nice to spend time with Joe’s family in Ireland. We got to spend time with Joe’s great uncle and his wife in Galway and then again when they took us on an amazing tour of Inis Mor. We also got to spend time with some of Joe’s family friends in Cork. It was nice to start off our trip with so much family and friends around us!
Cliffs of Moher
Seeing the Cliffs of Moher in person was such a surreal experience for both of us. It was the first thing in our travels that truly took our breath away and we’re so grateful that we had a clear day despite it being off season.
Turning 25 in Dublin
Celebrating my 25th birthday in Dublin was awesome. Turning a quarter of a century old wasn’t something I was too excited about but experiencing it in Dublin lessened the sting. We started our celebrations that night with a tour of the Guinness Factory and then bar hopped our way through Temple Bar. It’s definitely a birthday I will always remember!
We LOVE South East Asia
Coming to South East Asia was a bit scary for both of us. Neither of us really knew what we were getting into and we bought into a lot of the stereotypical scare tactics we heard at home about it being filthy and very unsafe. Thankfully we found all of that to be untrue and very quickly fell in love with the region!
The people are amazingly kind, the food is so delicious, and their culture has been so interesting to learn about. We think everyone should come to this part of the world at least once in their life!
Hanging out with Elephants
Getting to spend time with elephants in Chiang Mai was probably the highlight of our trip so far! We took a full day tour through Elephant Jungle Sanctuary, which is known for their humane treatment of their elephants and their no riding policy. We got to spend some time feeding and getting to know the elephants before taking them for a bath. It’s definitely an experience we will never forget!
Celebrating Loy Krathong
Due to a few issues which we’ll detail out below, Chiang Mai wasn’t our favorite place but getting to attend the Loy Krathong festival definitely made it worth it. Seeing thousands of lanterns dot the night sky was breathtaking and we sat there for hours watching them float up, asking each other how we got lucky enough to experience something like this.
We enjoyed the two day slow boat ride from the north of Thailand to Laos. It definitely put us in the mood for the relaxed pace of Laos. We spent the two days enjoying the beautiful scenery, reading books, playing cards, and making friends who we would travel with for the next few weeks!
The Low Points:
Getting Pick-Pocketed in Chiang Mai
There were signs everywhere warning tourists to watch their valuables and we were very careful wearing our backpacks on our fronts but sometimes it just isn’t enough. We were watching the fireworks in a huge crowd of people, and someone managed to steal Joe’s wallet right out of his velcro-ed pocket.
We noticed pretty much right away and were able to cancel all of his cards, so all we lost was some Thai money, the actual wallet and the rest of our evening since we had to go to the Police station to report the theft. We were lucky since many of the other tourist at the police station had lost high-value items or their passports.
We did our best to shrug it off, since these things are bound to happen. We still enjoyed the Loy Krathong festivities and didn’t let it ruin our time. We have however learned from our mistake and no longer keep anything in our pockets if we will be in a large crowd!
Bad Case of Food Poisoning
The same night that we lost the wallet we both went to bed not feeling too well. Unfortunately, we woke up a few hours later with terrible food poisoning. We basically spent the day being sick in bed. It took us two days to be able to eat at all. The sad thing is we are pretty sure that we didn’t get sick from any of the amazing street food we had but a sandwich we ordered in a nice little coffee shop. We haven’t really let this change our eating habits because honestly you never really know what can cause it here and the street food is really too good to miss 🙂
Favorite Posts of November-
In December, we made our way from the north of Laos all the way down to the southern most islands, before heading into Cambodia for some much needed sun and sand! Stay tuned for upcoming posts 🙂