Read the full post!
While we were doing a Help Exchange with a family in the Central Coast of Australia, we kept eyeing a bay in the distance. One day, we decided to walk there.
Read the full post!
We spent a few days with a lovely retired couple (the parents of another HelpX host) helping out with their family farm around the corner from their new home, which neighbors the bay and Bouddi National Park. Read the full post here.
Or watch this silly video of us trying to put a curtain rod back up in the tool shed.
One of the most common questions we get from people regarding our traveling lifestyle: How did you afford it?
Travel certainly can be a strain on the wallet, but it doesn’t have to be. To us, travel is not a vacation. On a vacation, people may splurge and pamper because that one week might be the only time to spend money on traveling for the year. This is perfectly valid. Go for it! However, since we choose to travel long-term, we cannot afford --nor are we interested in -- resorts or all-inclusive packages.
MORE FOR LESS
Spending little does not equate to experiencing less. In fact, some of the most memorable activities cost little or are entirely free: Couchsurfing, riding a scooter, hiking to a magnificent waterfall, fishing with a Thai family in the mountains, taking a public ferry shared with high school students through the Kerala backwaters, for example. Still, some of the higher cost sights are well worth the price tag. For instance, Angkor Wat and the Battambang circus in Siem Reap, Cambodia cost more than our usual activities, but are totally justified.
Time slipped through our hands and this website has taken to the backburner. Even without promoting the site, however, there has been some interest as people subscribed after Lianne’s guest post on Intentional Travelers about CouchSurfing.
So, let’s start with a recap!
In early March, we departed ways (temporarily) after the 10-day Vipassana meditation course. Adam visited his family in San Diego while Lianne hopped over to Bangkok to squeeze an extra week of travel while doing a help exchange at her now-favorite hostel. She then went back to see friends in Chicago and Atlanta before spending some much-needed time with her family in New Jersey.
Read Lianne’s post - an overview of six months backpacking SE Asia on $15 per day.
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Perhaps Ho Chi Minh City, formerly known as Saigon, wouldn't rank high on our list if it hadn’t been for CouchSurfing. The city is chaotic, noisy, and overwhelming.
But staying with Phuoc and his family for four nights made our stay in HCMC memorable. We got along well and spent a lot of time together touring the city, eating local delights, playing card games, cooking together, practicing English, and even doing exercise videos! We wish we lived in the same city as Phuoc because we loved spending time with him.
Shortly after readjusting to the city life back in Chiang Mai after staying on the farm, we were off to our next endeavor. About twenty minutes out of the city is a non-profit organization, Care for Dogs, which was founded in 2006. The foundation’s objectives are numerous. Since there is an abundance of stray dogs on the streets, Care for Dogs aims to reduce this number by providing vaccinations and sterilizations, rescue dogs and provide new homes, improving the health of street dogs, fighting the dog meat trade, and educating the public about animal welfare. We saw some ill dogs in poor condition, but they were in good hands and were healing slowly, but surely. However, most of the dogs were quite happy and active. They all just needed a home and some love. Currently, about 200 dogs live the shelter either healing or awaiting adoption.
When planning our grand post-Korea travels, we knew we wanted to do some volunteering along the way. Jumping from site to site and constantly being on the go will exhaust us quickly. Being just a tourist isn’t appealing either — to better understand the environment, we wanted to immerse ourselves in it by connecting with locals and making a contribution, as much as possible and where appropriate.
Volunteering can do more harm than good sometimes, and we did a lot of reading on this topic. One quick read we recommend is the The Volunteer Traveler’s Handbook. So we try to keep all this in mind when seeking opportunities to donate our time.
That being said, we recently volunteered on an organic farm in the mountains of northern Thailand.
Welcome to AdamAndLianne.com
We're backpacking Asia frugally ($15 per day each) and showing you how you can too.