2017 was a year of new experiences and surprises. I visited 10 countries (seven of which were in Asia and almost all new to me). I started off in Ecuador “doing shaman things”, and ended up house-sitting in Japan, chilling in Bali, going crazy in India, and 10 countries later, finishing up in Thailand.
I first visited China long before travel blogs existed, in 1993, when I toured with a ballet, believe it or not!
Then, I swung through again in 2011 as part of the Ultimate Train Challenge, arriving to Beijing on the Trans-Siberian from Moscow, then taking the world's fastest train to Beijing, then a whole series of (much slower) trains through China and eventually on to Vietnam.
In 2017 I visited Hong Kong and Macau, both known as SARs (Special Administrative Regions) of China. Hong Kong in particular surprised me with its culture, food, and nature.
From food to feng shui, Hong Kong captured my imagination. Then it captured my wallet with the cost of living and other downsides. Here’s the good and bad!
Here’s what brought me to Hong Kong, why I loved it (to my own surprise), and why I need to return. Short and sweet Hong Kong mashup video included.
Here are 18 of the world’s fastest, highest, longest, deepest, happiest, smelliest, most dangerous – and more – things I’ve done:
With some of the most dramatic and beautiful footage yet, please enjoy Part 3 of the Ultimate Train Challenge video trilogy.
Imagine a week solid on a train from Moscow to Beijing, in small quarters with no showers and two people you’ve just met. Welcome to the Trans-Manchurian train!
3 of our 6 nights from Beijing to Saigon are on trains, so I have time to see Asian travel culture, make friends, and bide time. Here are some random experiences.
Guilin is a beautiful city with a thriving river culture, from morning meditations to touristy Li River cruises. Oh yeah – and rice noodles. Yum!
Visiting Beijing and the Great Wall of China is an amazing “full circle” experience for me; China was my 1st overseas trip – 18 years ago. Here’s my experience.
The Trans-Manchurian is 8,986km (5,623 miles), and involves 145 hours and 37 minutes of straight train travel. Give or take. Here is my account of the trip.