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I have 2 weeks in September to go anywhere in the world

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
So I've been interning with a CPA firm, and recently found out they're keeping me on full-time starting October 1st. Meanwhile I'm being paid a nice hourly rate and have a few $ saved up. I have two weeks off in September, what should I do? I've never traveled internationally, and I may be by myself on this trip. Ideally I'm looking for an adventure in a unforgettable location but that isn't too intimidating. I prefer water to mountains and want to avoid Africa, Mexico, and places where English is not the primary language. I'm athletic and would be interested in snorkeling, riding bikes, hiking, swimming, shopping or volunteering. I've seen most of the US except New York. I'm down to go there and stay in a hostel assuming I have some activities to do besides just walking around. People watching is fun but that's all I do on vacations, this time I'm looking for some more adventure. Overall I want some perspective on the world, so I don't want to go anywhere that's too similar to the US (San Diego that is) Thanks!
post #2 of 24
cross the pacific, spend a few days in 2 or 3 countries in asia.
post #3 of 24
If you dont want to go anywhere English isnt the primary language it dramatically shrinks down your choices. The Caribbean comes to mind. It fits with your interest in water sports but doesnt really give you much of a 'perspective on the world" unless you went to an appalling dump like Haiti to get a perspective on the third world and anyway they speak French.
post #4 of 24
[Obligatory Patriotic Plug for Grand Old England Goes Here]

But other than my obvious suggestion, I agree with the Caribbean idea, but I would most highly recommend either South Africa (which my future father-in-law has told me is his favorite foreign country) or New Zealand, which is probably the pinnacle of beautiful English-speaking nations, and in September will have great weather. Definitely go for the north of NZ, and near the coast. Christchurch and Wellington are both coastal, and are absolutely beautiful.
post #5 of 24
India.
Jaipur, Nilgiri Hills, Malabar coast.
Definitely unforgettable, and should be little problem finding an English speaker when you need one.
post #6 of 24
with the amount of time you have, I'd say it's enough to waste a little travelling to go see somewhere a little further than the states. don't waste 2 weeks hanging out in NYC. Some ideas: Australia / New Zealand sounds like what you'd want. English speakers, nice weather and scenery, hot women, etc. What you won't get is any sort of history or culture... I don't know San Diago that well, but I don't know how different aussi will be from what you've got back home in terms of weather and scenery. Then there's london. Terrible weather, ugly people, and no natural sights, but amazing human history and 2 weeks is enough to scrath the surface. As for culture, well it's a fairly safe starting point so you won't get a shock. something like Scotland could be an interesting detour to add in. Cape Town (south africa) is pretty amazing (I can PM you a list of things to do/see there). It has mountains, ocean, not that historical sights, but plenty of farmlands, amazing cheap food and booze, english speaking, but is a little dangerous. Culturally, lots of blacks / coloreds and I think it'll be a nice cultural change without being too extreme. I suspect something like asia will be too much of a culture shock and hard to do alone. I'd still consider doing something like Italy or France or even Greece since it's pretty english friendly and there is sooo much to see that 2 weeks is good for even just one of those countries.
post #7 of 24
This spring I had an unforgettable vacation on New Zealand's South Island. To give you an idea of what it looks like, the Lord of the Rings movies were filmed there. I suggest doing one of the New Zealand government's "Great Walks". You can book them in advanced and stay in these great lodges they have set up along the routes. Only problem I can think of is that NZ's south island may be cold in september (reversed seasons in Southern hemisphere).

Costa Rica also pretty sweet. I stayed at this place called the Rafiki travel lodge there. It was this great place in the jungle where guests got to stay in authentic luxury safari tents. The people who run it are great. They'll take you white water rafting, horse riding, whatever. One of the best vacations of my life.
post #8 of 24
Thailand - HK - Shanghai.

Quote:
boo hoo hoo they don't speak english there

OK, don't ask me; ask your mommy.
post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheAssman View Post
This spring I had an unforgettable vacation on New Zealand's South Island. To give you an idea of what it looks like, the Lord of the Rings movies were filmed there. I suggest doing one of the New Zealand government's "Great Walks". You can book them in advanced and stay in these great lodges they have set up along the routes. Only problem I can think of is that NZ's south island may be cold in september (reversed seasons in Southern hemisphere).

Costa Rica also pretty sweet. I stayed at this place called the Rafiki travel lodge there. It was this great place in the jungle where guests got to stay in authentic luxury safari tents. The people who run it are great. They'll take you white water rafting, horse riding, whatever. One of the best vacations of my life.

This one's looking good. I like how they have activity packages you can do, I'd be a little lost by myself. Is there anything like this, but maybe with MORE activities? I know there's something similar in Patagonia, maybe mountain biking or something?
post #10 of 24
Go to Rusland spend a view days there and when you're done with it take the train to China.
post #11 of 24
singapore - its asia lite, you get to see something different, eat some good food, and it isn't intimidating and everybody speaks english
post #12 of 24
+1 for Singapore if you want to go to an 'asian' country. Very easy to get by there. Singaporians are really nice people too. Aus and NZ are beautiful, but it's winter there now, so not really beach weather. For a huge culture shock but english speakers, India is an idea, but it wouldn't be my first choice for a first trip overseas. Japan is pretty awesome, but no english speakers, or at least very small amount of people willing to speak english to gaijin in Tokyo.
post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by musicguy View Post
+1 for Singapore if you want to go to an 'asian' country. Very easy to get by there. Singaporians are really nice people too.

What kind of activities can I expect? I've heard it's a great, clean city and very modern...but I'd still like to do more than just walk, shop, and eat. Any outdoorsy stuff going on there?
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by longskate88 View Post
What kind of activities can I expect? I've heard it's a great, clean city and very modern...but I'd still like to do more than just walk, shop, and eat. Any outdoorsy stuff going on there?

Singapore is just a city, so no.

SE Asia is great to get a feeling for different cultures. Most people don't speak English very well, but good enough to communicate with - especially in the touristy places, so that shouldn't be a problem for you. Moreover, there are plenty of young travelers from all over the world visiting and loads of them travel alone or in duos so everyone's basically looking to meet new people. Especially if you've never been abroad, I think this is an opportunity to see a different culture you shouldn't pass up on. And it's not just boozing and hooking up - sure, there's plenty of that: while Vang Viang is famous for its bars, you could also go kayaking and visit the limestone caves, same for Ton Sai beach and rock climbing.
post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by longskate88 View Post
What kind of activities can I expect? I've heard it's a great, clean city and very modern...but I'd still like to do more than just walk, shop, and eat. Any outdoorsy stuff going on there?

what type of "outdoorsy" activities? there are beaches, sailing, fishing, some relativly easy hiking. if you want a two week trek, less.


here is the perfect trip for two weeks - hit sing for 5 days, get a little aclimated to asia, then ake the train to malaysia, hit penang and KL, and you could probably do some diving and some other "outsdoorsy" stuff, then hit thailand for a few days, maybe a beach and bangkok. you could cut out malaysia if you wanted - just do sing and bangkok. easy, clean, safe.
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