Category ‘2009’

December 30th
2009
written by Alonna

I’m so excited to share our upcoming travel plans for 2010! While the first half of our year of traveling was a whirlwind of many places within a relatively small amount of space and time (3 months in Europe), the second half of our trip will be fewer places but spread around the world for 5 months. And I mean that literally, Ben and I will be traveling completely around the circumference of the world using a RTW (Round-The-World) flight ticket. In RTW-terminology, we’re purchasing a 5-continent OneWorld Explorer ticket (“LONE5”) starting in February from Ecuador. The ticket is pricey, around $5k per person after all of the taxes and a couple additional flights. And it’s not easy to plan it either, I’ve probably spent a good 40-hour week figuring this out (good thing I’m not working!)

But back to the fun part, here’s our itinerary:


View RTW 2010 in a larger map
 

  • Quito, Ecuador (3 weeks) – Alonna will be studying Spanish while Ben remains in Boise
  • Galapagos Islands, Ecuador (10 days) – Ben arrives in Ecuador we head out for an 8 day cruise
  • Patagonia, Argentina & Chile (3 weeks) – Hiking, biking, and enjoying the outdoors
  • Buenos Aires, Argentina (4 days) – A little time in the city before leaving South America
  • Istanbul, Turkey (6 days) – We missed Istanbul on our Europe tour, so we’re going back!
  • Egypt (9 days) – Traveling further back in history from where we left off in Ancient Greece and Rome
  • South Africa (9 days) – We’ll base in Johannesburg and go on an African Safari
  • New Zealand (1 month) – Focusing on the South Island and all the adventures we can manage in a month
  • Australia (3 weeks) – Three weeks somewhere in Australia
  • Hawaii (1 week) – Bonus! Our RTW ticket lets us stop in Hawaii on our way home

All of this starts January 8th when Alonna leaves for Ecuador – only 1 week away! Our dates are flexible, but we plan to be back to Boise by the end of May.

Please share this trip with us! We are extremely interested and open to having YOU travel with us at any point of this trip. If you were thinking of going to New Zealand, Egypt, Hawaii or somewhere else listed above this spring, let us know because we’d love to meet up. Also please share if you know anyone in any of these areas that would be interested in meeting or hosting us. The more the merrier!

December 28th
2009
written by Alonna

It’s been really nice to be back in the US for the holidays. We’ve been able to see both of our families, catch up with friends, relax, and plan the next phase of our trip. For Christmas we spent 12 days traveling to both Virginia and Minnesota to visit family, and the common theme for the entire trip was SNOW! Between the huge East Coast snow storm and then the Midwest snow storm, we got our share of snow this holiday season. And for the most part, we loved it!

snow09_01 Snowed-in (more…)

December 14th
2009
written by Alonna

Many people asks what our favorite place was during our recently completed 3 month trip to Europe. Even though we’ve settled on a generic (but honest) answer of “all of Italy and Greece”, of course there’s a lot more of our trip to share. Here’s a few favorites…
 

Favorite Scenery: Chamonix, France

Alonna & Ben on top of Aiguille du Midi, France Ben hiking in Chamonix, France Alonna resting with a great view, Chamonix Ben with a great view of Mont Blanc (more…)

December 10th
2009
written by Alonna

A while back, Ben created a program to create photo collages and mosaics.  If you’ve seen one of our poster-size prints, then you know how cool it is to stand far away to see the main image and then get up close to see all of the little photos that make it up.  If not, then you can zoom in and out one of these for a similar effect.  Here’s a few that I created using only our photos from Europe. Click on the image to see the full size.
 

Photo of our shadow on a small medieval street in Southern France:

Original Collage Mosaic
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December 3rd
2009
written by Alonna

One of our favorite experiences in all of Europe was visiting the ancient ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Ben already shared some of our interesting discoveries at these sites (see his Pompeii and Herculaneum post), and here’s a few more photos…
 

Pompeii

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November 30th
2009
written by Alonna

Now that we’ve been home for a couple weeks, I’ve had a chance to sort through our photos. It has been fun to re-live our trip through the photos (all 8,000+ of them!). I found some good ones that never made it on the site during our trip, so I will post some of them here and there. But before that, here’s a little more on our time in Rome…
 
Rome at night


Pantheon

We’ve seen some amazing churches, but you gotta love the simplicity and ancient grandeur of this Roman “church” (more…)

November 16th
2009
written by Alonna

Just a quick note to say that we made it home to Boise, about 22 hours after leaving our apartment in Rome. All of the flights went well, but we’re exhausted. It feels nice to be at home, and to be in the US where everything just seems normal and comfortable. And I was amazed when I got home to look through my drawers and closet to see how much clothing I own. And to think I used to complain about having nothing to wear!

We’ll probably keep updating the website now and then, with some general observations from Europe, maybe some details on what we packed and how our budget turned out, and of course, stay tuned as we plan the next stage of our adventure.

November 14th
2009
written by Alonna
Rome: 150 B.C. to 2009 A. D. and everything in between

Rome: 150 B.C. to 2009 A. D. and everything in between

Ben and I definitely saved the best for last on this Europe trip. We’ve fallen in love with both Italy and Greece, where we’ve spent our entire last month. And our very last stop, Rome, is a culmination of everything we’ve seen up to this point. With ancient ruins everywhere, impressive churches on every corner, museums with great Renaissance art, and a slightly chaotic modern city, Rome really packs a lot into one place. Although we’re a little tired of sightseeing, Rome has made it pretty easy to continue to be amazed.

We’ve seen Roman ruins throughout our trip, but nothing compares to what is here in Rome. There’s a Roman amphitheater in Nimes, France? It’s tiny compared to the Colosseum. You’ve seen Roman statues in a museum in Vienna? The Vatican museum and Borghese Gallery will blow you away. Frescoes and mosaics buried by a volcano at Pompeii and preserved for 2000 years? We were surprised to find that the National Museum of Rome had an almost more impressive collection. I’m not trying to degrade these or any other places, but Rome is really “it”. (more…)

November 12th
2009
written by Alonna

After two days in Athens, Ben and I picked up a rental car and headed out to the country.  Before this trip, I hadn’t heard much about Greece outside of Athens or the Greek Islands.  It turns out there’s A LOT more of the country to explore, and we barely even scratched the surface.
 
Our rental car in Greece Driving in Greece
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November 9th
2009
written by Alonna

Ben and I are fascinated by ancient history and have enjoyed seeing Roman ruins in Europe. We took a step even further back in time by traveling to Greece for a week, and we love it! We spent 2 full days in Athens, the birthplace of modern civilization. The Ancient Greeks made huge leaps in government, philosophy, science, and art.  It’s been amazing to see ruins and artifacts from this era and imagine all of this happening over 2000 years ago.

Athens is a huge sprawling city, but all of the tourist sites are concentrated near the Acropolis (a big rock in the center of the city with the Parthenon and other ancient temples). This area of Athens is really nice (more…)

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