We’ve been living in China for 7 months now and we’ve started getting The Travel Itch. We need to get going again. We need to get on the road and experience new things. There are people in the world who can live their lives, working all year and taking short 2 week vacations. Some people even think 2 weeks is too long! But for us, we have a hard time sitting still for more than a couple of months. The planet is always out there, begging us to start exploring again. This time we’re planning an epic trip that is completely off the beaten path! Surely things will change in the next 5 months before our next journey begins, but we’d like to give you a run down of what our plan is thus far.
On July, 22, we will finish our contract Teaching English In Yangzhou, China. We’ll spend a couple of days packing up and shipping stuff home. Then we will head up to Beijing. From Beijing we will take the Trans-Mongolian Railway to Ulaanbaatar. From Ulaanbaatar we will take a quick 3-5 day trip into the Gobi Desert. Then we want to head to Tsetserleg where we will mount a true Mongolian expedition. We want to trek for about 10 days following 185 km of the Chuluut river up to Terkhiin Tsagaan Nuur (White Lake), fishing and camping along the way. This is not a journey frequented by foreigners so we look forward to being alone, blazing our own trail! We will probably pick up a GPS unit to avoid getting lost, although the river is hard to stray from. From there we want to head to Mongolia’s premier attraction: Khövsgöl Nuur, where we will start another journey on horseback, following the shoreline of this stunning lake.
After spending a week or so around the lake, we plan on heading through Siberia on the Trans-Siberian Railway to the old Russian towns of Omsk, Tomsk and Tobolsk. We will only spend about a week in Russia because we will be making our way through “The Stan Countries” of Central Asia.
After Russia, we will enter Kazakhstan where we will do some more trekking and visiting the new modern capital of Astana. Then we will head into Kyrgyzstan where we plan to so some more epic, off the beaten path hikes and treks, both on foot and on horseback. I’ve pre-ordered a fly rod, reel and the works here in China, so I’m really looking forward to doing some fishing in these countries and catch a fish like the Taimen in the photo below!
From Kyrgyzstan we want to head over a 4000 meter high pass into Tajikistan, where we plan to do some long, alpine treks around the famous Pamir mountains. After Tajikistan we will fly to Uzbekistan to see some of the intricate central Asian architecture in three of the most intriguing cities in this region, Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva.
We always like to find our way off the beaten path, and this trip will include some of the least touristic places on our planet! We’re extremely excited about it and we invite our followers to come along for the journey. On the way we will be posting our blogs and videos, as well as tips and information on how you can do the same trip on a budget! This is sure to be an epic, independent, outdoor adventure and we can’t wait to share the experience with YOU!