In six weeks time we’re off on our biggest adventure yet – 8 months galavanting around the world with our kids!

Lots of people have asked what we’re doing and where we’re going, so I’ve dusted off and freshened up our travel blog which is where we will document our adventures for family and friends to keep up with what we’re up to.

To start with, here’s a map of where we’re going and the details that we’ve planned so far.

 

The trip starts on the 15th of January when we fly out of Auckland and the adventure begins:

  • Australia – a couple of nights in Sydney to visit family. The kids really want to visit Taronga Zoo 🙂
  • MalaysiaKuala Lumpur is going to be our SE Asia hub, as we’re doing a bunch of AirAsia flights to get around the region. On our various visits we plan to visit:
    • the Petronas Towers which supposedly has a fantastic kids’ playground and park plus fountain light show.
    • the Petrosains Discovery Centre which is a kids’ science museum
    • Batu Caves Hindu temple complex
    • KL bird park
    • Kidzania – our kids are beside themselves about going to Kidzania, where kids get to dress up and perform adult jobs. It looks amazing. Despite our encouragement against gender stereotypical roles, Sophie wants to be a waitress and flight attendant and Jack a pilot and fireman.
    • eat our way around KL sampling lots of different Indian, Chinese and Malay food.
  • Cambodia – we fly into Siem Reap and have 3 weeks in Cambodia. We plan on visiting:
    • the ancient temples of Angkor Wat
    • the white sand beaches of the southern coast on the island of Ko Rong Samloem,  staying right by the water for a week in these amazing looking beach bungalows.
    • Kep, a seaside town which is famous for it’s crab markets and Kampot down the road where the famous pepper comes from.
    • the capital Phnom Penh to visit the royal palace and Mike and I will have turns at visiting the museum which documents the horrific genocide of the Cambodian people in the 1970’s (not one for the kids). Then it’s back up to Siem Reap and flying back to Kuala Lumpur.
  • Vietnam – Flying out of KL we have just over 2 weeks in Vietnam:
    • we plan on spending most of that time in Hoi An, with its UNESCO World Heritage old town and nearby beaches. We may also go to Halong Bay depending on time.
    • we will take the overnight train to Hanoi where we have 4 nights before flying back to KL.
  • Philippines – from KL we fly to the tropical white-sand beaches of Boracay in the Philippines, which was awarded the world’s best island destination by Travel + Leisure magazine a few years ago. We’re spending 2 weeks here mostly chilling out as there isn’t much to do other than beaching it 🙂
  • Thailand – we’re in Thailand for nearly a month:
    • first we fly into Krabi in Southern Thailand where we are spending a few nights at Ao Nang
    • we’re then catching a ferry to the island of Ko Lanta for 2 weeks
    • then we fly up to Bangkok where we’re renting an apartment for 10 nights to explore the city and re-visit some of the places we’ve been to before like the Grand Palace, and reclining Buddha, plus experience new places as well. We hope to make it to Kanchanaburi to visit an elephant sanctuary. There’s lots to do for kids in Bangkok, including aquariums, playlands, iceskating and ‘snowtown’, a children’s discovery centre and another Kidzania! We’ll also be there during the Songkran festival – which by all accounts is a 3 day long national water-fight, which should be interesting!
  • Indonesia – from Bangkok we fly to Bali where we figure we’ll feel like staying put for a while after all that travelling around. We’ve booked a lovely looking traditional style house in Canggu for a month and will potter around doing daytrips in between schoolwork and beach/pool time! Then it’s back to KL one last time before we fly to…..
  • France – we’re spending nearly 3 months in France, our happy place 🙂
    • we start with 3 nights in mid-May in Paris before picking up a car
    • we’re driving down to the Loire valley where we are Eurocamp glamping again for a week in the same type of tents we did in 2014
    • we then drive down to the Dordogne region and to our home for 10 weeks ‘Le Pigeonnier‘, a restored pigeon loft 10 minutes from Bergerac. We hope to immerse ourselves in local life as much as possible, and have found some great opportunities for the kids to attend a local school for bi-lingual education and performing arts classes once a week. We plan on spending a *lot* of time at the local markets and doing lots of cooking!
    • we’re also planning a short trip to the Pyrenees in July to watch some of the Tour de France cycle race
    • In early August it’s time to hit the road again, with a quick stop in Lyon on our way east.

 

  • Switzerland – this will be a country in a day, lunch in Geneva as we drive through the alps from France to Italy via the Mont Blanc tunnel.
  • Italy – a fleeting transit visit through Northern Italy as we drive to Croatia. We’re visiting Venice for a couple of nights, but it will be pretty manic given it’s peak season in August.
  • Croatia – we’re staying for 3 weeks in Orebić, a peninsula in Dalmatia in a stone cottage that’s 20 seconds from the Adriatic Sea 🙂 It’s a handy location for the 2.5km ferry ride to beautiful Korčula island and daytrips to Dubrovnik. On the way back up we want to visit the Plitvice Lakes National Park, another UNESCO world heritage site that we never made it to last time we visited Croatia.
  • Slovenia – a quick journey through Slovenia on our way north, we’d like to visit Lake Bled.
  • Austria – it’s time to introduce the kids to the Sound of Music, and we’ll hopefully call into Salzburg, maybe even a cheesy Sound of Music tour if time allows
  • Germany – the final country in our European leg, we’ll drop the car off and are flying out of Munich after chowing down on prezels, sausage and beer.
  • United Arab Emirates – a four night stopover in Dubai on our way back to Auckland.
  • Home! – we arrive home in mid-September

We’ve thought long and hard about doing this trip – after all it’s a bit left field when you pack up your lives, throw in your stable jobs, rent out your house and take your 3 and 5 year old along for the ride through some developing countries! Anyway I’ll write a bit more soon about why we’re doing this trip and our ‘pros vs cons’ list, how we’re doing it and some of the other questions people have been asking us….

While we’re away we’ll be updating this blog with all our adventures, including a section just for the kids, and we’d love you to bookmark it so you can follow along as well 🙂 We’ve also set up a Facebook page and will be posting lots of pics on Instagram, so please come and ‘follow’ us!

 

 

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