We’re delighted to be able to bring you a second #rtwsoon interview for the month of April. This interview is with Sarah Robertson of Footprints of a Backpacker, who is departing for Asia with her partner Alan in just over a week’s time!
I was born in London and have lived here pretty much my entire life, aside from a brief (3 year) spell in Wales for Uni. I have a love-hate relationship with this city, one which tends to veer closer to hate the longer I stay here. I started my travels early, completing my first RTW at the age of 18, before University and going on to complete a second at the age of 22, after University. The first trip was definitely one of finding my feet as I stuck to the straight forward travel destinations of Australia, New Zealand and the US. The second trip allowed me to branch out a little more and add Bali, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand to my ‘been there’ list. This was also the first opportunity for my partner, Alan, and I to travel together.
Aside from the big trips, living in London is excellent for indulging in what I call ‘proximity travel’. I’ve taken short (and cheap) trips to various parts of Italy, Greece, Cyprus and France. We nearly made it to Morocco last year but the Spanish ATC strike put a stop to that one!
Where are you going on your RTW?
This trip isn’t strictly a RTW route as we’ve booked ourselves three separate itineraries. The reasons for this come down to price, certain immovable dates we need to be in the UK and personal preference. So, for the first part of our trip we’re spending two months in South East Asia, hoping to see the countries we didn’t really get to explore last time. Specifically: Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia. Our second trip takes us to Peru for some volunteering and hiking the Inca Trail, then through Bolivia and down to the southern-most tip of Argentina. The final stage of the trip that we’ve planned so far takes us to New Zealand, via four days in Tokyo, on a one-way ticket. We’ve got ourselves the working holiday visas which we’re hoping to use to live in New Zealand for at least one year, if not two.
When are you leaving?
We leave for Asia on the 2nd May (not long now!), South America on the 23rd August and Tokyo on the 5th December.
Why did you decide to go on this trip?
Travel has always been what drives me. It is my passion, one which I have no interest in suppressing. I’ve always known that I wanted to travel long-term and it’s really just been a matter of getting the money and the plans together to finally make this trip happen. The three parts of this trip cover a wide variety of the world, introduce us to new countries and cultures and hopefully will take us outside our comfort zone.
We decided to go on this trip because not going would mean not following our dreams. I firmly believe that, if you are lucky enough to have the opportunity to fulfill your dreams, that you should go for it.
What will you be doing to pass the time before your travels?
Up until this point we’ve been working hard at our jobs here in London and trying to avoid the many opportunities to spend money. We’ve also been fitting in as much ‘proximity travel’ as we can manage. Although I’m so very excited to be getting away, I’ve made a conscious effort to try to enjoy the time we’ve spent at home. You can’t put a value on the chance to spend quality time with family and friends.
I’m particularly excited about the time we’ll spend at home in between returning from South East Asia and flying out to Peru. We’re coming back to celebrate my grandmother’s 80th Birthday (whom we are very close with – we live with her currently), But in that six weeks we also have various family visiting from abroad and we’ve booked a 9 night sailing qualification course.
If you could give just one piece of advice to a fellow #rtwsoon traveler, what would it be?
It would have to be make the most of the planning stages. As unbearable as the wait to leave can sometimes be, the time really does rush by. Enjoy the time you get to spend with friends and family. Relish the opportunity to make the most of seeing your home-town before you leave. And enjoy the unique challenges that planning a round the world adventure can bring. The adventure starts the moment you decide to travel.
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If you’re heading around-the-world in the next 12 months and would like to be featured here, please contact us.