Wow. What an incredible trip and adventure! I can’t believe how quickly it went by. I arrived back home yesterday (and am impressed that I have this blog post completed!) with a whirlwind of emotions and so many memories.
I have never taken a trip like this before and certainly pushed myself outside of my comfort zone at times (directions are not my forte). But this past month showed me so much of this amazing world – and so much about myself. After saving up to take this trip for years, I am extremely grateful and happy (and exhausted).
I’m not going to recap every detail of my travels but I did want to answer some planning and packing questions as well as share some highlights: pictures, fitness and food.
Over the next few weeks I’ll be posting about my international CrossFit and workout experiences as well as a “What I Ate” post for each city/country. I’ll typically stick to my Monday “schedule” but will likely post on some Wednesdays too.
First, let’s talk planning – because coordinating and organizing a multi-country and city trip with flights, trains, accommodation, tours etc is not always simple. If you’ve been reading for awhile, you know that I’m a type-A planner. So having a plan was important to me but being flexible in that plan was important in general. First, I needed to come up with my general trip idea. I knew I wanted to (and could) go away for a month. I figured out where I wanted to go; what made sense geographically; and what fit in my budget. I had to make many versions of an itinerary to figure out what worked and made sense (once I checked flights, accommodation, etc) so I really had to be patient.
This wasn’t so easy at first but I am so glad that I took the time to allow things to fall into place. I organized everything in an Excel document with 3 tabs: my calendar (see below), my notes for each city (language, time, currency, things to see/do, food, CrossFit, etc) and my booking statuses (transportation, accommodation, tours – what has been paid for, how much, etc.) The excel document (thanks Donna!) was so amazing.
So here’s where I went: (sorry the image quality from Excel isn’t great)
My sister has been living in London this year so I used London as my “base” for the first half of the trip and had my round-trip air fare out of London as well. I set out to do most of this trip solo but actually ended up picking up some people along the way and I quickly learned that solo travel is never actual solo… you meet so many people!
I think I planned this trip pretty well (I could have done Bergen better) but was not so stellar at packing (even though I made a billion lists). I was determined to take a backpack (this one) because I thought rolling something would be so annoying. I filled my pack to the brim with clothes, shoes and toiletries. I am really happy with my backpack decision – it worked out great.
For my clothes, I took too many sweatshirts, jeans, jackets, etc – other than in Bergen, it was so hot!
I also packed a bunch of snacks – Larabars, EPIC bars, Kit’s bars, Made in Nature Fruit Fusion packs, Vega electrolyte packs for easy snacking and for on the go breakfasts when I was in a pinch.
I had a small “day” backpack (similar one) and a fanny pack (this one) as well. The fanny pack was so perfect and useful. As I said, my transportation for the first half of my trip was generally out of London so I had the luxury of leaving my large backpack at my sister’s flat and only taking what I needed (in a backpack I borrowed from her) for that leg of the journey. I was also able to do laundry at her flat twice, which was so necessary.
And I owe a big thank you to Mama Honey Bee because I swapped some clothes I didn’t need for ones I did when she came to London/Prague.
I thought sharing a few photos from everywhere would be an ideal way to detail my trip. I would be happy to answer any questions as best as I can so just comment below. And I’ll certainly be sharing more details re: food and fitness but until then, hope you enjoy some pics!