Planes, trains and automobiles. Traveling requires some mode of transportation, even if it’s just your feet. For 21 months we transported ourselves around the world. Let’s just say we became intimately aquainted with the semi-cama buses in South America, the back seat of a Land Rover throughout Africa and the upper bunk of trains in Asia. I can honestly say I love riding the rails, there’s nothing better than falling asleep, comfortably in your own bunk and waking up in your destination. It’s a bit like magic. Although I’m used to them at this point, buses are my least favorite. A great cultural experience, but a slow, dusty and often frustrating way to go. The few boats we were able to take were often a welcome relief. There’s just something about being out on the water that puts you in a good mood.
How do you prefer to travel?
After surviving the worst bus ride ever, we booked a flight back from the Amazon jungles near Rurrenabanque, Bolivia. When this little thing landed on the grass runway I wasn’t even phased, just thankful we weren’t getting back on a bus.
Now this is what I call a sleeper bus. We took a bus from Almaty, Kazakhstan to Urumqi, China to avoid an epic train journey. Our bus was filled with Kazak women heading to China for some sort of tax free holiday shopping spree. We were thankfully taken under the wing of two sisters who helped us order food at the rest stops and navigate the border. This was the first bus we had ever seen with bunk beds- it even came with heavy blankets. We slept like babies that night, despite the pot holes!
Heading to the Amazon our transport looked like it would barely survive the journey to the boat dock. I think we stopped twice to refill the radiator with dirty water from a stream. Surprisingly we made it to the boat. Shocking.
There’s no better way to see SE Asia than from the back of a motor bike. We enjoyed our three day journey around Laos so much that we’re considering getting one of these bikes now that we’re home. Of course the journey came with the requisite mud vs. bike obstacle course, but despite spinning out of control a few times, we were good to go.
There aren’t very many transportation options crossing into Ethiopia from Kenya. Basically it’s this cattle truck you see below.
That wasn’t happening, no matter how hearty we thought we were. Thankfully, our friends allowed us to join them in the back of their Land Rover, Kaspuuurrr.
Tuk-Tuks! I love these little rickshaws. Besides the motorbike, these are my favorite way of getting around Asia. The one pictured below is from Wadi Halfa, Sudan – if you look closely you can see the driver hiding out inside for shade. Welcome to the Sahara Desert!