Traveling in Asia – Lessons and experiences

 

Well, i actually made it!

After an ecstatic year full of memories, experiences and lessons throughout the Asian continent, I finally landed myself in North America. What happened though, in the previous 12 months? Let’s see together below…

At first, i will just mention the simple statistic facts of the journey. It started on the 13th of May 2015, from Heraklion of Crete and I landed in Montreal, on the 24th of May 2016. This makes, 377 days of continuous traveling, throughout 12 countries. These were Greece, Turkey, Georgia, Armenia, Iran, Nepal, India, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Japan and South Korea. You can also see how many days I spent in each one of them, on the graphic below. 

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The distance I covered, can’t be accurately measured for various reasons. A rough estimate that can be given, is that the total was around 23.000 km. Those were made by bicycle, cars, motorbikes, buses, trains, boats and airplanes!

To make it through those wonderful countries, I needed money on the road. All the expenses of the project in Asia, are described on this chart below.

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So I spent a total of 2.804€, in 377 days, visiting 12 countries. I am pretty sure, that you spent more money than me, in this period of time… There are lot’s of people (if not the majority), who keep saying that – “I love traveling, but it’s very expensive”, “I would really like to go around the world, but i don’t have so much money”. So I am here, to prove this wrong! All you need is determination, organization, your best smile and be ready to dance 😀  I will make a post at some point, that i will mention tips for cheap or even free traveling… Yes, it’s possible to travel, even with zero money in your pocket!

Countries, kilometers, money… Do they really matter? Yes they do, is my answer. But what matters the most for me, were the people i met and carried me literally and metaphorically, through this incredible journey. All kinds of people. Young people, old people, poor, rich, funny, boring, brave, generous, fat, thin, black, white, yellow, green, red, stressed, relaxed, angry, sweet, average, beautiful people! They were the ones who helped in all kinds of situations, taught me the culture of their places, cooked for me, played with me, shared their houses, loved me and many more. They are so many, that i could write names here for at least a week… There is no way i can properly thank all those amazing human beings, for their support and love. You all know who you are. You have a special place in my heart and I will always love you. A big hug to each one of you. I hope we meet again at the crossroads of life!

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As for the experiences now. I honestly don’t know where to start, or either how to end this one… So i will try to visualize it a bit for you.

 

Cycling on my bike for more than 10.000 km, from Greece to IndiaIMG_20150612_100541

 

Exploring the magical landscapes of Kapadokya 15000001

 

Accidentally finding a pool, at the top of a hill, on a random walk…11655428_10153388948989299_120358248_n

Resting at the Black Sea, waterfalls next to the road14010001

 

Sleeping outside of police stations…07250004

Cycling in Armenias “hidden” paradises12144668_790888974353971_9078134813630875387_n

 

Admiring Iran’s unbelievable architecture

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Loosing myself in the amazing jungles of NepalUnknown

 

Feeding a bunch of cute, little monkeys828_1454773199271

 

Camping alone, in the middle of Thar desert 16330001

 

Hitchhiking rides everywhere00130002

 

Tasting the super-delicious Thai cuisine16

 

Exploring the miracle of Angkor WatPhoto Mar 05 1 14 45 PM Photo Mar 05 9 50 34 AM Photo Mar 05 11 52 09 AM

 

Travel the world with my girlfriend23410001

Volunteering to build a school12938116_196351594089876_515203908441160812_n

 

Being in Japan828_1461061125628 21070007 22150001

And those are just a tiny fraction, of the much more daily adventures i had. Like when my backpack was stolen and I was so lucky to find the thief and take back, all of my stuff(my favorite!). Or when I almost die, twice… When cycling the roads of Nepal and India. 

Inevitably, all these experiences are being transformed into life lessons. All you have to do, is blink an eye back at life and say thanks  😉   Sometimes these lessons are given to you for free, while sometimes you have to pay a ransom for it. And the ransom occasionally, can be really expensive… But the more expensive it gets, the more valuable it is. It’s not only about money. It is actually about loosing valuable things for you. That’s the biggest lesson I’ve learned so far. The art of loosing valuable things, falling down and getting back up again, stronger than before.

Life on the road isn’t always easy and carefree. You’re a leaf, that is being carried by the wind. And the wind won’t ask you when it changes. There will be times that you will experience the absolute hell and times that you will enjoy the infinite paradise! After every uphill, there is a downhill and vice versa. Does it worth it? The answer is hiding in that face…

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I know it will sound a bit of a cliche, but at this point i have to say a huge thank you, to some special people. First my mother, that even though we don’t communicate so much(she’s not into the new technology…), I know she is thinking and being worried about me. So mom don’t worry, I am just fine! Also to my father, who is trying hard to support me anyhow he can, every time I ask for something. And my brother, who was there for me, every time I needed him to save my ass… Thanks bro!

Planetsim, my one and only sponsor, who was the only one to believe in me! Providing me with great communication tools, in order to connect and communicate around the world. Thanks a million guys  😀  

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Last but no least, a person who supported me from the very beginning, and keeps supporting me until now, is Manolis from Livetrips. I owe him a lot and I will try to repay, by keeping my promise to him. I love you all, Livetrip people! Keep up the good work.

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All these lessons, experiences and numbers, are very interesting in order to understand the scale of the project, but in the end of the day, they’re just a bunch of words… The things(which are not things) who really matters, that will stay forever inside me, develop my personality and carve my future, cannot be measured in numbers, words or letters. Cause these are all the moments that i experienced. The most important and powerful thing in the universe! And there were all kinds of moments on this journey. Good moments, bad moments, funny, painful, random, hilarious, loving, terrible, magical, clear, life changing, boring, exciting, disappointing, surrealistic, struggling, friendly and many more. I am eternally blessed and grateful, for each one of these moments I lived, that made me the man who I am right now.

I continue with a huge curiosity, for the moments to come. One Love  😀 

 

 

To Be Continued…