My Epic Solo Adventure – October Update

October update

It was just over a month ago that I first filled you in on my Next Epic Solo Adventure but so much has happened since.  So here’s my October update!

Last month I thought, ‘oh, ya, I’ve got eight months to plan and ready myself,’ but now it’s down to seven and I need to kick it up a notch.  Life, work, writing and blogging make time fly so I’ve committed to get stuff done and to stay on track I’ll be updating you every month as to how I’m doing, what I’ve accomplished and I’m sure an endless play on ever changing plans.

Last month I narrowed down where I want to go and approximately how long I want to spend in each city.  With this I sadly had to scratch off a few places that were high on my must see list like Turkey and Croatia.  Why?  Simply because there is far too much I want to do, with limited time (I know you’re probably thinking 3 months is a limited time!?).  Turkey has been high on my list for the past few years but when I started adding up all the places I wanted to go and things I wanted to see and do, it wasn’t feasible and I’d probably need at least a week or two just in Turkey, and so that’s going to have to be another adventure.  As for Croatia, I was also surprised by all the cities I wanted to visit and though it’s still on the ‘if I can fit it in, by chance’ list, I’m probably also going to have to save that for yet another adventure.  Seems the adventures keep piling up!

With that said, here are the cities that made the cutting block…

In England – London, York, Bristol, Bath, Canterbury, Gloucester, Uxbridge (visiting family)

In Europe – Paris & Lyon, France / Lisbon, Portugal (with possible day trips north) / Brussels, Belgium (with day trips to Ghent & Antwerp) / Malta / Venice & Cinque Terre, Italy / Prague, Czech Republic / Athens & Meteora, Greece / Bucharest, Romania / Jersey, Channel Islands

I’ve already started looking into places to stay, from private rooms in hostels to nice but budget friendly hotels.  I’ve also been looking at tours like free walking tours and tours to cities or sights outside of my main destinations.  One thing that is set is my flight! Yes, I’m excited to say it’s booked!  I had been watching the prices on a few different sites and when I checked Air Canada last Sunday I saw that a direct flight from Toronto to London’s Heathrow had gone down almost $50, and so I thought ‘no time like the present’, and jumped on it.  I leave the end of April 2015!  Just going to show you that all it takes is to say ‘Yes to adventure!‘ I was thrilled, still am, as it means it’s finally real, I’m going!  A dear friend of mine once told me that he doesn’t get excited, as it’s not real, until the flight is booked!  It’s real!

travel quote

What else have I been doing to prepare, financially, physically and mentally?

I’ve almost completely paid off my line of credit (almost because of the flight), and have cut out as much non-essential spending as I can, by indulging in free activities like hiking and reading.  As for the upcoming budget-breaking Christmas season – well, I’m not one to indulge in gift buying as I like to keep things simple and about being together opposed to fancy new ‘things’, so this year I’ve decided to either make my gifts or simply give the gift of time and love with dinners, games and laughter.

As for the physical front, I always like to try and get back into shape and be as healthy as I can before departing on a trip and sadly have not been on track thus far with this, other than some hiking and such, this is definitely something I’ll be working on in the coming months!

travel quote

How do you prepare mentally for an adventure like this, you’re probably wondering?  For me, this is my first long-term solo adventure overseas.  It’s one thing to head off for solo travel to places that speak your language or have similar customs, but it’s a different ball game when it’s a different language spoken and varied cultures and customs.  So to prepare mentally for this adventure I’ll be delving into books and blogs about the countries I’ll be visiting and will look into learning some of the basic language to help me along.  I also just finished reading a book that I totally recommend when setting out on a new adventure, it’s called The Art of Pilgrimage – The Seeker’s Guide to Making Travel Sacred by Phil Cousineau.  It really helps you get into the mind set of making sure you have the most memorable travel experience you can and has tips and guides to creating lasting memories on your travels.

And so, with time ticking, I must:

  • make my to do/to buy/to get lists
  • renew my passport!
  • read, read, read

and SAVE, SAVE, SAVE!

Have you been to any of the places I’m visiting? If so, I’d love to hear your tips, must sees, accommodation recommendations and if you’re a fellow travel blogger – “Let’s do coffee!”

 

Stephanie

I’m a Canadian gal with a passion for wildlife, the great outdoors and travel and hope to inspire others to feel the same way! Travelling mostly solo I love to explore Ontario Gems in my own backyard as well as exotic cities around the world.

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8 Responses

  1. I always think one of the most exciting parts of a trip is the planning. You’ve got a wonderful experience to organise and ‘m looking forward to following you. I’ve done all the places in England you mention (apart from Uxbridge), Paris, Venice & Jersey. Looking forward to following you and would love to ‘do coffee’ but somehow I think you’re on the other side of the world 🙂

    • Thanks so much! And you’re so right, the excitement of travel begins before you even leave your front door with all the planning. I’d love to hear any tips you have! And as for coffee, next time! 🙂

  2. Anda says:

    A very impressive plan, Stephanie. I agree though that Turkey and Croatia deserve a special trip rather than just passing by. You are very brave though for taking this trip by yourself.

  3. mytraveljournalnl says:

    Really cool that you’re going to Europe! I’ve been to Paris, Lisbon, Brussels and Prague. Paris is really amazing! I’ve been there a few times and I really love it. You can easily spent some time there. If you’re in Lisbon, I would also recommend Sintra.

    I really understand your excitement. In January I’m going to Asia for six months, also my first long-term solo trip. When I decided to go there I also had eight months for preparations and there are just three months left now… Wow, time flies but I love to read everything about it and to prepare.

    And don’t worry too much about the different languages. Although it’s good and fun to speak a little bit of all those different languages, a lot of people in Europe speak English.

    Have fun!!

  4. Hannah says:

    So excited for you!

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