Our first year around the world

Today is one year from the day we got on our first plane to start our travels around the world! I cannot believe that time has gone by so fast!

It feels like yesterday that we were selling all our stuff, packing our storage space and selling our home. It feels like yesterday that we were trying to deal with worries and wonders of what to expect from this big adventure. Now all those thoughts have been overcome brilliantly!

During this year we have visited 17 countries, touched 5 continents, moved between places on: boats, buses, camper vans, car (driven over 20000 km) and planes (over 40 planes). We have experienced many different cultures, many different lifestyles, beliefs and religions. We have visited some historical sites that we had only dreamed of visiting! We made the world our home!

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Our dilemmas before leaving

Seems like yesterday that we kept on wondering what our kids reactions were going to be. How were we going to feel being nomads? Were we going to able get through the whole year or were we going to be overwhelmed and ready to go home after a few months? How were our kids going to react to the constant changes? Were we going to able to adapt to every place?

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Our answers….

Some of our questions still haven’t got a real response, but what we have lived through this year has been truly amazing! We have experienced so many things that a blog post wouldn’t be enough to talk about all of them. We are 5 family members, each one lived through this time in different ways and although we are growing together this experience has touched us in different ways, lets see what each one of us has to say about it…..

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Our personal interviews:

Emma

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How did you feel before leaving?

I was excited, but a bit sad because I was leaving my friends and all my toys (wild laugh ahahahahaha). 

How do you feel now that a year went by?

I’m so surprised that we did it. It was fun traveling this year, I loved going to see all the places. But I did miss our home a bit…..

Which place did you like the most?

Bali or actually every country where I got to go in the water!

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Which country did you enjoy less and why?

Maybe India because the food was really spicy, the Pizza too! 

Which activity did you really like doing?

Snorkling wherever it was possible and visiting the elephants at the Knysna Elephant Park in South Africa.

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Do you think something changed inside of you this year?

I think I am different now. I learned to be more funny. I’m very patenient at taking care of my little brother. I take things less seriously. I love drawing every time I have a chance! 

What is a place we didn’t visit yet, that you want to absolutely see?

Bahamas or anywhere with sand, beach and water!

Is there something new you are passionate about thanks to this experience?

Horses and dolphins!

Do you think traveling is a good experience?

Yes! It is a good experience for families because you get to see and learn about new places and you can spend more time with your family. You never know what is going to happen next!

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What is one of the things we did that you will never forget?

Going horse back riding at the Giza Pyramids in Egypt and walking on the beach side by side with the dolphins at Monkey Mia in Australia!

Cosimo

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How did you feel before leaving?

I felt ok about getting out of school. I was sure it was going to be fun and I was very excited 

How do you feel now that a year went by?

I’m happy of all the places we have seen and things we have done, I cannot believe the year went by so fast!

Which place did you like the most?

Perth in Australia, because it was very family oriented, I loved their public transportation! Dubai, I loved the Burj Kalifa!!!! Bhutan because of the temples and the buddhas.

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Which country did you enjoy less and why?

Singapore because there were too many people and they didn’t care about families.

Which activity did you really like doing?

Swimming with the whale shark in Exmouth Australia.

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Do you think something changed inside of you this year?

I read a lot now. I eat lots more vegetables and I’m always willing to try something new. I’m curious to try to do new things. I have so many questions about everything!!! 

What is a place we didn’t visit yet, that you want to absolutely see?

Tibet, because I want to climb all those mountains. 

Is there something new you are passionate about thanks to this experience?

Books and rocks.

Do you think traveling is a good experience?

Yes! because it makes you more open to trying new things. I ate a very hot pepper in Thailand and caterpillar in Zambia. I don’t think I would have tried it if I hadn’t been traveling and more open to new experiences

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What is one of the things we did that you will never forget?

There are so many……bathing with the elephant in Thailand. Driving the golf cart in Belize. Driving a scooter in Thailand!

Luca

This interview is a collaboration of the four of us based on what we have observed in the past year, since Luca still doesn’t give us the straight answers we are looking for ……..

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How did you feel before leaving?

I had no idea what was going on, although I did notice many of my big toys disappearing…..you guys confused me a lot!

How do you feel now that a year went by?

Just fine, I get to go on planes all the time, and go on trains and boats too! I also get walk barefoot very often!

Which place did you like the most?

Any place where there is a house and a bed, but most of all a beach! I really liked going up a temple in Thailand, it had 1260 steps and I did them all on my daddy’s shoulders…..he is so strong!

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Which country did you enjoy less and why?

I didn’t see a big difference. I guess I didn’t really eat much in India so probably there, although everyone was so nice to me and always wanted to take pictures…..

Which activity did you really like doing?

I liked to drive the bus…..and seeing the snow!!!

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Do you think something changed inside of you this year?

I improved my yelling techniques and I can yell in many languages now! I also know many more words, although I’m not sure in which language I’m saying them, but hey I’m talking!

What is a place we didn’t visit yet, that you want to absolutely see?

Disney cruise, I love all those characters and boats!

Is there something new you are passionate about thanks to this experience?

Horses, cars, planes, trains…..everything that moves and takes me somewhere…..

Do you think traveling is a good experience?

Yes! Because I get to go on planes very often. When I’m tired I have 4 family members that carry me and I get to meet a lot of new people, animals and sometimes toys!

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What is one of the things we did that you will never forget?

Turning 3 at the Giza Pyramids was pretty memorable, luckily mommy takes pictures so I will never forget that moment! I also really liked to go on the horse, they let me pick between horse or camel and I said “I want horse, horse, horse!”.

Massy

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How did you feel before leaving?

I was nervous because we were going to places we had never been before and this time I didn’t have to take care only of myself but of 3 little kids. 

How do you feel now that a year went by?

I’m very surprised and very impressed of all the places that we have been to and how we adapt so well to the new environment and to each other.

Which place did you like the most?

I loved every place we went to, because each one of them left something special in my heart. It reminded me how we grew together.

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Which country did you enjoy less and why?

I agree with Cosimo, Singapore because it wasn’t family friendly.  

Which activity did you really like doing?

I loved swimming with the whale sharks in Australia, it was a very intense experience being in the water with this huge animal. Flying on the beach in South Africa was amazing as well! 

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Do you think something changed inside of you this year?

Yes of course! Through the help of my family I really learned a lot about myself. 

What is a place we didn’t visit yet, that you want to absolutely see?

Canada, because I think it is very natural environment. Since I really enjoyed all the natural places that we went to, I would like to visit more with similar characteristics.  

Is there something new you are passionate about thanks to this experience?

I rediscovered my true passione for paragliding.

Do you think traveling is a good experience for families?

Definitely yes! Because you really learn to work with your family and around your family so you are really able to smooth your angles. It is really amazing how you can appreciate everybody even in a difficult situation when you don’t know the language, the culture, the land and the food!

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What is one of the things we did that you will never forget?

When I landed on the beach while I was paragliding and my kids came running up to me cheering and my amazing wife took a picture to seize the moment. Priceless! From that picture you can feel the emotion through everybody’s face.

Sarah

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How did you feel before leaving?

I was nervous because I didn’t know what to expect and I was worried that we didn’t organize everything as we should. I felt also very overwhelmed from all the things we had to do before leaving (selling house, putting everything in deposit….).

How do you feel now that a year went by?

I feel like my life is so much more simplified now, no worries or stress like last year! I’m proud of us as a family for everything we did this year, it is truly amazing to see how well we have worked together through everything!

Which place did you like the most?

Every place has been amazing because we have learned so much. But a couple in particular have a special place in my heart. Bhutan, I was in awe of the beauty y of the country but most of all the spirituality that is so present in everyday life. Morocco it was so unexpected and just beautiful  everywhere we went!

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Which country did you enjoy less and why?

Singapore, it was tough with the kids, specially for young ones, we found much less tolerance towards them.  

Which activity did you really like doing?

Swimming with the sea turtle was my “wow” moment on the Gilli Island, I also got a tattoo with the turtle! I also loved our self driving safaris, we have plenty of adventurous stories to tell!

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Do you think something changed inside of you this year?

Yes of course! I learned to simplify my life, everything we need is in a suitcase…..we all used to have vert full closets! I learned to really understand what I need and what is just extra. I also stopped planning as much as I used to but rather go more with the flow. We always found a place to sleep anyway!

What is a place we didn’t visit yet, that you want to absolutely see?

Philippnes, just like Emma I love beaches and water! But I would also like to find more hidden gems around the world, not as populated with tourists. 

Is there something new you are passionate about thanks to this experience?

I’m becoming an expert in booking and finding best deals for our transfers and I’m very proud of this because we are making ourselves more and more independent!

Do you think traveling is a good experience for families?

Absolutely! It is such an amazing learning experience for all of us in so many different ways! We get to spend time together, learn to help each other, to get out of our comfort zone and put ourselves out there to get or find what we need. All of this happens in a new place, that is going to gift us with beautiful memories with the people we love…….

What is one of the things we did that you will never forget?

Hiking up to the Tiger’s Nest in Bhutan. Mass and I hiked up all the way, while the kids got to ride part of the way. For me in was a moment to myself to think while trying to overcome the struggle. Once we arrived to the top and saw the Monastery clinging to the rock, it was a moment of pure bliss.

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What comes next for the 5 World Explorers…..

Just like we explained in our post Our Nomad Life Continues…. after a few months of travels we realized that this new lifestyle feels good for us. Our 1 year anniversary isn’t the end of our travels but rather the new beginning! More places to explore, more cultures to learn about, more international friends to make, the world is still our home until our kids will want to continue this lifestyle.

We hope to keep on inspiring families to travel more together for a weekend, for a month or for years like us. It isn’t important where and how long, it is important to understand that you can and should share this moment with all of your family. It can be difficult at times, tiring, but at the end of the day, these are the lovely souls you are sharing your life with, so why not enjoy it at the most?! Happy travels to everyone and hope to find you somewhere around the world!

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