In this chapter of My World Travel Guides, we look at planning a trip around the world. The world is a big place, and there is more than one way to go around it. Going around the world is a dream for many, but it is often put aside as too lofty to be materialized.
In fact, it is within reach, particular of most people in the developed world, as well as a growing number in the developing world. On this page, we examine practical aspects such as at how much time you would need, how much you have to spend, what places to go, and so on. We look into the planning expected before and after the trip, as well as your expectation during the trip itself.
How much time do you need?
The world is 40,000 kilometers in circumference. If your idea of going around the world is simply to hop from one major airport to another, without ever stepping out into the city, you can go around the world and back in just three days flat. On the other hand, if you intend to explore every country, every city, every town, every village and every sight, one life time might not be enough to see everything. So when we speak of "going around the world," we are referring to something in between those above two.
Where should you go?
This is one of the many-ways-to-skin-a-cat questions. It's entirely up to you how to create your itinerary. You can go to exotic places, where people don't speak English, or to entirely familiar places, such as the biggest cities of the world; you can visit world-famous tourist attractions, including the World Heritage Sites or world greatest sites that are regarded as the Wonders of the World, or you can simply visit all your penpals and people you got to know in Facebook.
When should you go?
If you are planning to get away for a full year, then you are likely to be somewhere away from home across all four seasons. You should plan to be in each of your destinations when it looks best. This means, you should check when it rains, when the temperature is searing hot, and avoid these times for more pleasant weather. On this website, as far as possible, I try to provide you information on when to expect the maximum and minimum temperature, as well as the wettest month.
How much should you spend?
A trip around the world on a shoestring budget will likely set you back US$10,000. On the other end of the scale, the sky's the limit. If you intend to cocoon yourself in luxury, have a personal guide to show you around, and dine in fine restaurants, the total price tag for a round-the-world trip can be US$100,000 and possibly more, depending on the number of destinations you visit.
What should you see/do?
This depends on your interest. Some people prioritize on historical sights, so they visit all the ancient monuments and pay special interest to cover the World Heritage Sites. Some people love culture. They want to see how the people of far, far away live their lives, the clothes or costumes worn over there, the food even, and so on. Some people want their holidays to be eventful; they want to go where specific festivals are being staged. Then there are people who don't care much for foreign culture or heritage, they go for their recreation, to simply laze on a serene beach, with the foot caressed by the gentle waves, and a bright blue cloudless sky hanging over them. And then there are those who want their journey to be full of activities; they want to go rock climbing, whitewater rafting, hang gliding, skiing and all other things ending with -ing.