Slackpackers

Vince n Suz

Slackpackers



Had been 4.5 years since landing back on aussie soil after our 6 months of travel around europe in a kombi. Inspired by others blogs and with the travel bug biting us hard once again we decided it was about time to start planning another vagabonding experience.

The last 4.5 years had been jam packed with buying a house and solidifying our positions on the corporate ladder. But with the biological clock ticking and with us both just turning the big three-0, the road is calling once again!

We have just set out for 12 months on the road from March 2nd 2014. The last trip was planned to the tee (thanks to my anal retentive Virgo coming out in me). So this time around things will be a little different, no rules, no plans, just keep going til the money runs out. Okay maybe a little planning....

I have been reading all of your great blogs and jotting down some of the great places and experiences you have all been having. So we have hatched a very rough plan from that.

Leg 1 will cover 6 months with extended periods in SE Asia, likely including:

Nepal
Thailand
Laos
Vietnam
Cambodia
Malaysia
Indonesia

Leg 2 will also cover 6 months and will likely see us flying into Argentina and making our way North through South and Central America all the way up to Mexico.

Thanks for following, and please enjoy following along with us for a trip of a lifetime!



Asia » Vietnam » Red River Delta » Hanoi May 29th 2014

Cruising on our contemporary junk boat through the random jumble of ever changing limestone crags and karsts was by far one of the top 5 natural wondrous landscapes we have laid eyes on. We were literally in awe as the uninhabited islands continued to be laid out in front of us at every turn. We had certainly been looking forward to Vietnam’s Halong Bay since initial ideas of a trip through SE Asia came to us a few years back, and we weren’t disappointed by any stretch of the imagination. But before our dreams and prior visions of sucking back a few fruity cocktails whilst lounging back on the sun deck of a traditional junk boat whilst gazing at the inspirational craggy peaks jutting out from the South China Sea were realised, we first had 4 ... read more
so many rice varieties... who knew!?
magical sunset 2
very cool run down wall

Asia » Vietnam » South Central Coast » Da Nang May 21st 2014

As we wandered aimlessly and lost ourselves amongst the beautiful weathered french style yellow buildings, lanterns adorning every street and taking in the quaint river through the centre of town, we knew we were going to love Hoi An. Adding to the picture perfect town Hoi An is superbly positioned with vast countryside (namely rice fields) and a glorious sandy beach all within a 6km radius. Anyone looking to retire who is arguing with their spouse about whether to choose a country/beach/town retirement need look no further - you can have it all here! Hoi An old town is a strictly walking and cycling area, and the elimination of crazy vietnamese cars and scooters zipping about everywhere certainly adds to the romance and charm of the place. We arrived in Hoi An to the not so ... read more
Fisherman live in action
Super kool old skool
Rough charm of the town

Asia » Vietnam » Mekong River Delta » Can Tho May 4th 2014

Laying on the open aired top deck of our small but luxurious private wooden boat, cruising down the backwaters of the mighty Mekong River system, carries a contradictory feeling of intimacy together as a couple but also a sense of belonging to the surrounding river dwelling local community. It becomes exponentially harder to wipe the joyous smiles off our faces as we journey our way deeper and deeper into the curiosities of the way in which these Vietnamese locals spend their days. Our senses are going into overload at the fascinating sight of bicycle riding ladies wearing their signature conical hats (con las), carrying fresh greens in their handle bar baskets. Flailing Vietnamese flags adorn the facades of almost every front fence. Families lather up with soap as they bathe on the waters edge, whilst their ... read more
kids playing in the Mekong
sunset over the palms
con la wearing rowing women

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh April 29th 2014

Phnom Penh…..best pronounced by stifling a sneeze, mumbling the consonants and aspirating heavily out of the nose, or at least that’s how we like to pronounce it! PP, otherwise known (or previously known) as the Pearl of Asia, it was once considered a significant beauty in Cambodia due to its gorgeous and historical French inspired architecture. That is until it was sadly ravaged by war and the hideous Khmer Rouge regime. Exchange Rate $1USD = 4000 Cambodian Riel After 8 hours of bumping along highways in a bus, snoozing and listening to tunes, we arrived in PP to the usual horde of tuk tuk drivers hanging off us like leaches asking us “where you stay, where you go?”. Once again with google maps as our saviour, our trusty iPhones told that us our hotel was a ... read more
S-21
Memorial offerings at the Killing Fields
Cooling off at Cafe Naturae

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap April 25th 2014

The MRT stopped at the Suvarnabhumi airport with only 75 minutes to spare until our flight to Siem Reap, Cambodia was due to depart. We eagerly awaited at the closed doors of the train, ready to bolt for the check in desk, probably resembling greyhounds frothing at the mouth in the gates in anticipation of chasing that mechanical rabbit around the track. We certainly still had some ground to cover and we knew it was going to be tight. Bangkok airport is massive! We felt like we had been running on an endless loop of conveyer belts and escalators when we finally reached the departure screens to find the right desk. The flight was nowhere to be seen on the screen so we high tailed it to the airports info counter, by this time dripping with ... read more
beng melae bicycle
follow the light....
the typical tomb raider shoot

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Ko Samui April 20th 2014

Exchange Rate $1AUD = 29.6Baht As the spicy Samui sun begins to retreat and no longer stings our skin, there is not a ripple in the ocean and the sky turns into a beautiful oil painting with soft pink, red and orange hues. A sense of calm and relaxation washes over us both as we lay back on the powdery white sand to enjoy what has to be our favourite time of the day. As the day slowly escapes us and evening falls, the twinkling lights peek out from the palm trees and fences along the beach and Koh Paengyan lights up on the horizon. Whether it be losing ourselves in our books, taking a dip in the lukewarm unspoilt ocean or watching the world go by, sunset on the beaches in Koh Samui has to ... read more
I see you - looking into the beautiful big eye of a local Samui elephant
Koh Taen beach
Mangrove walk on our half day tour

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok April 7th 2014

Exchange Rate $1AUD = 29.6Baht We inhaled the pungent steaming air and the moisture stuck to our dry bodies the moment we started down the Thai Airlines stairs, having landed in ….and of course the answer to the title’s riddle…. Bangkok! We had been dreaming of this moment since shivering our brass balls off in Dragnag, Nepal, all those weeks ago. Yes the air was thick, it was hard to breathe, sweat was dripping from every pore in our bodies, but we loved every minute of it. During the couple of evening hours after landing we spent our time venturing to our one night transit hostel, Link Corner, and a quick jaunt to get dinner at the local corner Thai restaurant. Once settled and ready to eat we devoured delicious pad thai and sipped refreshing young ... read more
Lone Monk in the Grand Palace grounds
Biggest gold buddha in the world - Wat Traimit
Chinatown street view

Asia » Nepal » Pokhara March 29th 2014

23-29 March, Pokhara Exchange Rate $1AUD = 86NRP (slightly less than Kathmandu) The trip from Kathmandu to Pokhara is only around 200km, however it took 8 hours for the bus to negotiate the winding bumpy “highway". We rode with Mountain Overland for $14USD one way per person. The bus was comfortable and clean, and was only around 40% full. We stopped about 4 times for toilet and tea/lunch breaks. The trip takes around 1 hour to get out of Kathmandu and then hugs the mountainside, winding its way gradually downhill and then uphill again, all the way to Pokhara. The roads are quite shocking in some places. Even with a seatbelt you find yourself flinging out of your seat as the bus rocks frantically from side to side. You need to hang on for dear life ... read more
Phewa Lake
world peace pagoda
sunrise sarangkot

Asia » Nepal » Lukla March 19th 2014

(**Photos are our favourites from the entire trip, so most have probably already been previously posted**) Nothing can really prepare you for the mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional challenge of trekking at high altitude in the Himalayas. I think possibly like most people who make the decision to trek to Everest Base Camp, or anywhere above 3,000m for that matter, we were in hindsight perhaps a little naive and uneducated. Our research and mental preparation, although it felt thorough at the time, was limited to reading about other people’s experiences through their online blogs. Our physical preparation was gained through regular cardio sessions and some bushwalking around the Brisbane hinterland. However this was all completed at a maximum elevation of perhaps 300m above sea level. Spiritually and emotionally, we went through no real preparation at all. ... read more
Namche Bazaar
cute cottage
stunning colours

Asia » Nepal » Namche March 19th 2014

15-19 March Days 11-15 Dragnag(4700m) to Phortse Thanga(3680m) to Namche Bazaar(3440m) to Pakding(2610m) to Lukla(2840m) to Kathmandu Today, the 15th of March, of all days, was our 6th wedding anniversary. We are due to be dropping 1000m in vertical elevation during around a 7 hour hike. We would pass through both Machhermo and Dhole, towns we had previously spent the night. Physically and mentally we were not in the greatest mood to be trekking, exhausting the last of our energy, in the frigid temperatures. But up here, you really have no choice. It’s either walk out of here for days on end, or pay probably around $6k a head to be choppered out to Kathmandu. On a 12 month slackpacking budget, we rightfully chose the former. We noticed that over the course of the past week ... read more
donkey train on the suspension bridge
Ama Dablam views
last view point of Ama Dablam




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