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Three weeks to spend anywhere in the world..


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  • Added on: April 28th, 2011
I wouldn't recommend Tibet/Nepal that time of year because it's in the middle of monsoon season (and, curiously, the most popular time for people to travel to Tibet). Sitting in Nepal now and it's already starting to get monsoon-like, which is very unusual! (Plus, um, it's a several day journey straight to Lhasa from Beijing- prolly not best to fly due to altitude- and there's a good amount of interesting things you'd be skipping over.)

Also I actually rather liked China and think you can cover a decent amount of ground in 20 days. Spent a week in Beijing and it didn't feel like too much at all, you must must must see Xi'an for the terracotta army (there's also a neat Muslim quarter with amazing street food), then Chengdu if you're still interested in Tibet/Nepal, plus pandas. Else I actually think 20 days going from Beijing to Hong Kong would be a good trip- first Beijing a few days, then Xi'an, Shanghai, Guilin/Yangshao area, then wrap up with a few days in Hong Kong (though I hear it can get very hot in summer that far south). Overnight trains pretty much everywhere, and the occasional cheap flight can help minimize travel times on the particularly long ones.

That's my two cents on China at least. :)

Kate and Dan

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Holds PhD in Packing
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Joined: October 7th, 2008
Location: Toronto, Ontario

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  • Added on: April 29th, 2011
I don't think you can go wrong with any of these choices. I can attest to China/Tibet and to Peru/Bolivia as I've been to both areas. And three weeks is a nice amount of time to spend anywhere. That being said, I might consider Peru — only because it's in the same time zone as you — and, because it's closer, you lose less time to travel and jet lag.

In Peru, in three weeks you could get from the Amazon to the Andes and explore thoroughly. It's an awesome contrast.

In China, I followed the trail from Beijing Inner Mongolia to Kunming via Xi'an. The train is quick and convenient — and you can overnight on it.


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  • Added on: April 29th, 2011
Peru in 3 weeks is doable. Leave at least four days for the total Machu Pichu experience, including time to get acclimated to the altitude in Cuzco. This might include a 4 day hike to the site, difficult but definitely gorgeous, adventurous, and never to be forgotten. See my other posts on this particular trip. That leaves about two weeks to see a few different places.

Paracas is really cool, and so are the mountain towns. Then you could fly to Iquitos from Lima or other cities, and fly back. I don't recommend trying to get there by land in 2 weeks, though you COULD make your way to Iquitos by ferry boat as i did. its 3+ days, by the way. officially it was only 2 plus days, but then they stayed in port another day to load up on cattle and other such things.

If you do take a ferry, get yourself one of those cabins and put your stuff, and maybe your bodies, in there. On top its a massive party zone with not so good sleeping. You might like it at that.

In any case, you will want to fly BACK from Iquitos to save time, as I did. The ferry is fun once, but twice would be a lot more annoying and time consuming.

Iquitos, by the way, is one of the nicest cities I have been in for a long time, for a lot of reasons. From there, or from a stop just before Iquitos on the ferry, you can get a jungle lodge adventure that is just marvelous. I INSISTED on a two day trip due to time constraints, and I got a reasonable price. Usually they only did 3 day trips. I spent the last day in Iquitos just hanging around, and it was FUN. They have a sports bar called the Rose of Texas that is to die for, and I don't like sports.

Mexico city and points south, no question would be fun, and a lot easier.

It would look a little like this

Mexico City-Taxco
The Pyramids

Stick to the mountains in Mexico, though how you could miss the Pyramids, hot or no, I really don't know.

Or- mexico- bus to the guatemalan border through San Cristobal, a fun town if I ever have seen one,
and then to the highlands of Guatemala- more fun times there too, but not in Guat city. Save your funning for Antiqua.

The roads are open to you.

Also, you CAN have a great time in 3 weeks in Venezuela. There is La Sabana, the jungle, and all sorts of adventures to be found. Caracas? Not so much, though I found things to do there for a week. I'd make it 3-4 days next time I went. Oh, and 4 hours from Caracas is a really cool small beach area, with this perfect little lagoon and palm trees. They call it Choroni, I forget the real name, but its full up of middle class caracas people on the weekends, and quiet on the weekdays.
It's just great!

Bolivia, lots of fun I hear.

For me, just being in the high mountains with good people is wonderful.

San Cristobal


Holds PhD in Packing
Posts: 267
Joined: September 26th, 2007
Location: San Cristobal Mexico currently

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  • Added on: April 30th, 2011
Having just returned to San Cristobal after being gone since January let me just say it's wonderful to be back in this beautiful, colorful, active little city.There is definitely a reason it's one of my favorite places!
Traveling through Mexico and Central America starting in January '09. Hit me up if you want to meet!


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Holds PhD in Packing
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Joined: April 10th, 2008

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  • Added on: April 30th, 2011
yanks26dmb wrote:
Good food, interacting with the culture/people, viewing famous sites, and partying. Probably in that order.

The only place I'd currently consider in Europe is Italy...everything else I'm going to wait to hit when I have more time on my RTW.

There a lot of places in Europe that would tick those boxes that would you would be unlikely to visit even on a RTW. Eastern Europe is fast developing as a destination, Czech Republic, Ukraine (now the center of Europe's dance festivals). What about Iceland? Amazing country, cheap after they messed up the economy, great party scene. Or Portugal.........etc

Don't forget your history
Know your destiny
In the abundance of water
The fool is thirsty

"Rat race" - Bob Marley


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Guidebook Dependent
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Joined: March 28th, 2011

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  • Added on: May 3rd, 2011
I would say Nepal as a backpacking trip.


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  • Added on: May 3rd, 2011
Now- come to think of it-

Portugal is a good choice, though it is summer there and could be terribly hot unless you stay in the mountains. Porto is a joy to behold, even in summer. Theres even a nice beach if you want some shore breeze. Of all the countries in Europe, Portugal has become one of my favorites. Besides, they're broke and need your money.

Hungary is further north, so is Czech republic, good for 3 weeks.

Then there is Hungary-Romania, always a good combination for the more adventurous. Go to Romania before the Euro-people double the prices on you and do not double the fun.

So many places-


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