Dette er det store billedgalleri for Mettes og min jordomrejse i 2019-20, der her for første gang fremstår samlet. Vi startede i Det Indiske Ocean, hvorefter vi via Indien begav os til Himalaya; Nepal og Bhutan. Via Bangladesh gik det til Malaysia og Indonesien. SÅ fulgte den store Stillehavstur, der bragte os til sjældent besøgte steder som Palau, Mikronesien, Marshalløerne, Nauru, Kiribati, Salomonøerne og Vanuatu. Via Australien var vi også i Papua Ny Guinea på øhop. Turen sluttede i Surinam og Guyana, via Hawaii.
First part of our RTW trip took us to the Indian Ocean. First Comores that could be a paradise but contains the worst from Africa and the Middle East. Next to fabulous Reunion where we joined a cruise to Seychelles, Mauritius and Madagascar. Absolutely splendid and great variation. A nice start of the 100 days trip.
Probably the highlight om the entire trip. We had high expectations of Bhutan and everything was more amazing than imagined, This peaceful Himalayan country has some of the friendliest people along with majestic scenery, all enshrined in a calm, buddhist culture. They stick to traditions in clothes and buildings and seems to be very well balanced. It is a green country with more trees than anywhere else. In fact, trees have rights.
Second stop in Himalaya was Nepal. We had only four days so concentrated on the Kathmandu Valley with UNESCO WH temples , a sprawling city and view to the Himalayas. I definitely want to come back. Much more.
The next part of the Round the World Trip was a revisit to wonderful South East Asia. From Bangladesh we flew to Malaysia and spent some time in Georgetown/Penang, a cultural crossroad with a mix of traditions and wonderful food. The city had developed a lot since my last visit but was still charming. We celebrated 50 years birthday for Claus Andersen from the Travellers Club along with good people from all over the world. This was also my first time to visit Cameron Highlands, a cool and beautiful mountain area that unfortunately has become too touristy and developed. It was nice, however, to see the tea plantations and the calm mountain villages. The next stop was Kuala Lumpur (KL) where Mette's kids joined us. It is still among the most charming cities with excellent food and a mix of traditional and modern. Bukit Bintang is a nice palette of seafood, drinks and partying and is just getting wilder and wilder. From KL we flew to Yogakarta in Indonesia to visit the famous temples of Borobudur (Buddhist) and Prambanan (Hindu), amazing and absolute cultural wonders of the world. We spent New Year at Bali in a nice villa with pool. Ubud itself is very touristy and despite calm spots it is just too much for its own good. I was not a fan. the children departed and Mette and I ended in Timor del Este, one of the newest nations of the world where we toured the small capital of Dili, visited beaches and government buildings. From there we headed out in the blue Pacific.
A large part of the Round the World Trip took part in the Pacific where we both managed to complete our aim of visiting all independent nations in Oceania. The first part in the northern Pacific was formed with the United route from Taiwan through Palau, Guam, Micronesia and the Marshall Islands, before heading south. Palau, although a dull country on the surface has probably the world's best underwater adventures. We were in and below the water most of the time, aboard small boats, taking in the most of the coral reefs, sharks, turtles and a fantastic inland lake with freshwater jellyfishes. Palau was worth all the money (and that was a lot). From here we continued through small atolls, looking like something from Donald Duck, to Micronesia and the island of Pohnpei. It prooved to be a nice surprise with lush rainforest, waterfalls and not at least the stunning stone age-like fortress of Nan Madol, described on my blog, where you could feel like Indiana Jones. As political scientists we also enjoyed to visit the parliament and all the government institutions of the small nation, comprising a federation of four islands. Next stop was Marshall Islands and Majuro Atoll with the capital. The nation is most known for US nuclear tests on Bikini. We visited Majuro, beautiful from above but not much happens here. We, however, met Norwegian Anne Johansen, making the start of a good friendship. And always interesting to visit these nations that just seem too small for independent existence but struggle against all odds.
The second leg of the Pacific part went from Marshall Islands in the north to Nauru, Kiribati and Solomon Islands. Nauru has a reputation as the Australian refugee island but this is some time ago and now refugees are integrated and live in container houses very much like our hotel! The island also has some interesting remains from WW2. It is among the smallest nations in the world and when you arrive you can actually see the whole country from the air! Next was Kiribati and the island of Tarawa. There is a lot of WW2 remains and too pay of the damage the Japanese have built a very nice road along the island, actually the only road. So we took a roadtrip and drove ALL roads on Tarawa. That brought us past white beaches, old canons and small, traditional villages with happy children. You could even drive across the airport through a whole in the fence. This IS the road. The seafood was very fresh and we ate at the same place all the time, actually more or less the only one. Here we also met a WHO representative who for the first time told us about the Corona virus. Well, the rest is history. We then moved on to Solomon with even more WW2 memorials, including the famed Bloody Ridge and Red Beach. We stayed in capital of Honiara and toured the island and the remains of WW2 on horrible muddy roads. The country is very expensive and quite interesting. Well worth to spend some time.
One of the highlights of the entire trip was a visit to Papua New Guinea, often perceived dangerous but also incredibly interesting with a variety in culture and tribes. We sailed from Australia and visited the mainland where we encountered a cultural festival with dancing and tribes dressed up. We also encountered the local chief and his wife. Further on we sailed to Trobriand Islands, famous in anthropology, and visited local villages and people. Finally we landed at Conflict Islands, actually very peaceful! We visited a turtle sanctuary and experienced quite good snorkelling as well. The images testify to the beauty of the country and the smiles of the people. Before continuing to Vanuatu we spent some time in Australia in fancy Brisbane which I know well. We ventured out to Australia Zoo, founded by Steve Irwin, and I also revisited Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. We worked and enjoyed sunny Brisbane and all its life.
This was my second trip to Vanuatu and Mette's first. It was interesting to revisit 20 years after last time. We toured the main island of Efate with Ole from the Travellers Club and his Australian friend before heading to the wild island of Tanna with an active volcano and the famous John Frum cargo cult. Everything on this island is wild, we stayed in a hut 20 meters above the ground and slept to the tones of the rumbling volcano. we visited the volcano that was very active and were invited for lunch in the local village.
The very last part of the trip took us across the Pacific, via Hawaii, Honolulu and Pearl Harbour to Guyana and Surinam, exotic countries at the top of South America. In Hawaii we of course visited Pearl Harbour and toured the main island. After a long tour across the US and lot of troubles with Surinam Airlines (don't ever go with them) we landed in Guyana. The capital og Georgetown was a bit dodgy but we met Christopher who took very good are of us and even took us to visit his family. In Surinam we stayed with Henry and his lovely wife Sonja and we visited the capital of Paramaribo and some of the surrounding land. I guess we were a bit tired and full ox expressions after a long trip but had some good days nevertheless.