We are Sarah (aged 44) and Steve (aged 53) a married couple from the UK. We met almost 20 years ago and married 3 years later. We have already done a significant amount of travel, visiting over 50 countries. Due to work restrictions these have always been on trips of between 1 and 4 weeks. Over the years we realised that when the time came to return home we were never quite ready and always wanted more time to explore.
From the start of our relationship travel has always been a big factor. Steve is a keen triathlete and has competed in more than 250 triathlons including 28 Ironman competitions on 5 continents including twice at the World Championships in Hawai’i. Sarah is an even keener supporter and can always be relied upon to update Steve as to the quality of the local ice cream as he runs by! She is also great at picking up the pieces as he emerges from the medical tent at the end of a long day.
Our previous travel has been varied. We are quite happy laying on a beach but we enjoy being active even more. We have hiked in the Rockies, jumped out of a plane in New Zealand, surfed in India and Costa Rica, been diving on the Great Barrier Reef and had a close encounter with a rhino in South Africa, to name a few.
Like many people we speak with, we always knew we wanted to work less and travel more. So 15 years ago we put into place a plan to finish work as early as we could, whilst still allowing opportunities to travel in the mean time. We have made some sacrifices and taken a few risks (some didn’t pay off but most did).
Now we have arrived at the point where we feel it is the right time to go. We are giving up our jobs. We have sold our home and all of our possessions (with the exception of our car) and we are flying to Santiago de Chile in late December 2018.
Our plan (which no doubt will change over time … more than once … or twice!) is to make 3 trips a year, each between 2 and 4 months for a 5 year period. We intend to visit over 80 countries on 6 continents. There is a window in the plan, which, if finance allows, will open up an opportunity to visit Antarctica, but we’ll see how that one develops…..
The trips will be varied in style. These will include long distance cycling (Canada to Mexico and Athens to the UK for starters). We also plan to travel from Australia to the UK without using a plane! We will travel through India and into Nepal, before trekking to Everest Base Camp. Europe will also feature and we will attempt to visit every country on the continent. We have never travelled as part of a group before but fancy giving it a go. We will be doing this in South America, where we intend to make 2 visits, and also in Africa.
We have used most types of accommodation in the past from camping in our little tent to hostels and budget hotels, through to rooms in plush 5-star establishments. I’m sure we will continue to do the same, although I think the bias will be heavily skewed towards the tent situation and 5-star hotels might be reserved for birthdays and anniversaries or when morale is particularly low !!
We will return to the UK between each trip, this will be for a few weeks in order to catch up with family and friends. This is also the reason why we are writing this blog. It is something we had never considered until recently. The plan had been to write a diary but more and more people suggested the blog idea in order that they could see where in the World we were and what we were getting up to. Neither of us are I.T. experts so we apologise in advance but we’ll do our best and fumble through.
Why are we doing it? Our answer to this question is “why not?”. During the long hours of planning for this we have always looked for reasons TO do it rather than reasons NOT TO do it. Yes sometimes it’s going to be hard, but so is getting out of bed at 5am in mid January to go to work and we have had enough of that!
When we look back on our lives we have had some great times and we have some great memories and a lot of these have come from exploring the World. There is so much more to see and so many adventures to have.
During the planning we have asked ourselves many questions; will we be able to finance the 5 years? how will we cope with being together 24/7? and how will we deal with missing family and friends back home? to mention just a few.
We don’t know the answers to these questions, but what we say is “let’s go and find out !”