This is a declaration. of a will, of a need to live, to travel, to see the things in the world that will start these new chapters in our lives.
This early June, we start in Istanbul . . .
and then find ourselves among one of the 7 natural wonders of the world among the moonscape and underground cave cities of Cappadocia. . . .
We then head to the #1 party capital in the world, the cosmopolitan city of Beirut, Lebanon. . .
where we can take a day trip to see one of the 7 wonders of the ancient world: the temples of Jupiter and Bacchus at Baalbek . . .
We then take a bus to explore the souks of Damascus, the oldest city on Earth . . .
. . . before watching the sunrise over the ruins of Palmyra
We then make my way to Amman, Jordan . . .
before looking for Indiana Jones’ Holy Grail at the Treasury of Petra . . .
We hop on a plane to Kathmandu, Nepal . . .
and make a trek to Pokahara:
We continue the journey through Jomsom . . .
. . . where we visit the 2nd highest body of water in the world at Tilicho Lake . . . .
We then cross the border into Tibet to visit the former home of His Holiness the Dalai Lama at Lhasa . . .
Somewhere in between we’ll board the famous Darjeeling Unlimited to finally sip Darjeeling chai at the source . .
. . . or greet the sun-kissed peaks of Tiger Hill . . .
. . . where afterwards we can then sip on some chai by Dal Lake in Srinagar. . . .
. . . before hiking further into Kashmir, where we visit the mountainous city of Leh. . . .
After enough altitude sickness, we descend back upon sea level to see the world’s largest sundial at the Jantar Mantar . . .
. . . where we then use Jaipur as a jump off point to see the honey colored fort and its havelis at Jaisalmer . . .
. . . before going on a 2 day safari in the Rajasthani Desert . . .
. . . and before arriving at what I feel has become my second home in Mumbai. . . .
After a few days rest we continue onwards into the grand Dravidian temples of Madurai . . .
. . . and relax among the French-Indian town of Pondicherry . . .
. . . or afterwards at the Galle Face Green Promenade of Colombo, Sri Lanka. . . .
We then visit Sri Lanka’a cultural capital at Kandy . . .
. . . and bus it to the underground Buddhist temples at Dambulla . . .
. . . before finally arriving at Sri Lanka’s natural wonder of Sigirya. . . .
We finally finish Sri Lanka with a visit each to its holy sites of Polonnaruwa . . .
. . . and Anuradhapura. . . .
Then we visit the grand stupa of Yangon in Myanmar . . .
. . . and see how the local row with their feet along the eerie sereneness of Lake Inle. . . .
. . . before making my way to the “Manhattan” of temples in Bagan . . .
. . . or upwards to recite Ruyard Kipling’s epononymous poem at Mandalay . . .
. . . or to witness the enigmatic “Golden Rock” of Kyaitiyo . . .
I finally do the impossible and visit Pyongyang in North Korea . . .
. . . and climb up the mountains of Myohyang . . .
. . . then to visit the industrial city of Kaesong . . .
. . . and to see the DMZ from the North Korean side . . .
. . . before entering the largest stadium in the world to see the biggest show on Earth: the Airang Mass Games. . . .
We then make one more stop to visit friends in Singapore . . .
before finally heading home to NYC 62 days later. . . .