An overview and introduction to my travels including world maps, extent of my travels and list of trips and holidays.
The extent of my travels
Hello again, I assume you have read the overview. On this page I want to give you an insight into the extent of my travels in the context of the whole of the world.
Despite all of the improvements in mobility and ease of travel, the world we live in is still a huge place. Travel for pleasure used to be the preserve of the rich and famous. However, with continual reduction in the cost of flights to the far flung paces of the world, it has become ever more accessible. Add to that the impact of television, travel, wildlife, documentaries, and dramas that bounce around the World as if catching a bus. In fact there was recently a programme on the BBC called Planet Earth Live which made a point of jumping around the world, in different time zones, to show us wildlife, night and day, all by the wonders of satellite technology.
The end impression is that the world is getting smaller and we have access to it all. Now to a point this is true. However, if you look at the vast expanses of some of the less populated areas, and realize how difficult it is to cross them, as opposed to fly over them, then just maybe it is not quite so small.
I used to spend some time in Dereham, in Norfolk. After our first trip to Nepal Pete got a job in the area, and his parents had bought a house near Holt, ready for their retirement. Before they moved in Pete house sat for them. The house was called The White House and was atop a small dimple in the landscape. In Norfolk terms, a hill. The first weekend I stayed I drove up from London late on Friday night, met at the George in Dereham, and then on to Holt. Slowly drifting awake in the morning, (possibly early afternoon) I was rudely awaked by the roar of jet engines. And before I found Pete, again. Being the highest place in the area, and painted white, the supposedly uninhabited house made an ideal target for bombing practice for the local USAF base. So they would come in low, unheard, and then climb steeply right over the house, on full after burners. Pete knew this of course from pervious weekends, but chose not to warn me. What fun. That was not the story I intended to tell regarding Dereham. In the pub one evening we were talking to a local. As part of the conversation he said "I have never been to London, I have never needed to. I have been to Norwich though, three times. Never going again." (remember to read in a heavy country / Norfolk accent). Whilst the perception is of a smaller world, to a proportion of the community, which I suspect is a larger proportion than the media and advertisers would have us believe, the 17miles between Dereham and Norwich, the county town of Norfolk, is absolutely as far as one would ever need to travel. Not just the one gentleman in Dereham, but similar stories and distances, around the world. There are plenty of rural communities were it is rare to leave the village. Many people have never been to their capital city, or seen the sea, or seen a mountain. There is a map of part of Norfolk below, together with two maps of the world to help illustrate the extent of the difference.
View Norfolk bolt hole in a larger map
I however, have never felt the limitation to stay in the village. Now, I say limitation, but I don't feel that it is wrong to stay in one place, within a community, within an extended family. It can be very rewarding and lead to a high level of contentment, and happiness. I, on the other hand have been fortunate enough to be able to travel and have done so extensively.
The early years of travelling have obviously made a significant contribution to the extent shown on the world maps below. It did not stop there though. I have been further west and north on holidays since. However, whilst the statistics of how far east and west, and north and south are interesting, and maybe even, slightly impressive, the 'area' view still leaves a lot to be explored.
I did at one time, after my first trip to Asia, consider going on one of the around the world flights. Around the world flights were just becoming available, in either eastbound or westbound direction, in the mid 1970's. Still very expensive though. If I recall, the eastbound was favoured, possibly slightly cheaper. I don't have any records or evidence but I think a multi-stop, eastbound ticket valid for up to one year, was about £6000. That would be about £35,000 in 2012. Also, a quick look on the internet in 2012 found many different routes and carriers for as little £900. The main reason for choosing not to go on a round the world like that at that time was the perceived limited contact with the communities travelled through. It was a bit of a tourist thing, rather than traveller. Overland was the only way to properly get into it. I no longer think that, but did at the time.
It is not really about the statistics though, it is about the experiences. That, I hope, is what this travelogue is all about.
There are two world maps powered by Google. One is earth 3D view and the other is a flat projection. The main routes are shown as an indication only. They are very approximate. The Google maps zoom in in the same way as it does on Google Maps. There is a limitation on the amount of detail that can be included in a single Google map page which means that I have not been able to make the routes fully scalable in the way that the underlying map is.
The advantage of this is that there are many more maps throughout this travelogue, becoming more and more focused on specific locations as appropriate.
Seven continents and seven seas. The World is just too big to consider just as a whole, with no subdivision. One of my other interests is codification and organization. This goes back as far as my school days with an interest in animal classification andLinnaeus work. I have recently become a member of Chelsea Physic Garden (follow the links to find how they are intertwined). I was also interested in tectonic plates theory while at school. This was in the early days of the theory's development. Joining both together I received a school prize in 1965, a book called Animal Geography by Wilma George (Published in 1962 by Heinemann Educational Books Ltd). It discusses classifications, families, animal maps, and continental drift. With this background it seemed logical to arrange this travelogue by Continents and Oceans, with the addition of Great Britain, it is home after all.
So on to the extent of my travels. In terms of continents, I have visited;
which leaves three continents not yet visited;
- Australasia and
- South America.
A lot still to do!
In terms of Oceans, I have visited;
which again leaves three.
- South Atlantic
- South Pacific and
- Southern (also known as Antarctic Ocean)
I have not circumnavigated the world yet but would still like to try, but not all in one go. Nor have I done a pole to pole in Michael Palin stile. Until that time, below are the maximum latitudes and longitudes that I have achieved up to 2012. (Flight routes are not included)
|At Sea off
|71° 10' 16" N
|29° 2' 13" S
|88° 25' 46" E
|150° 15' 11" W
|A North South arc of
|A East West arc of
|100° 15' 16"
|238° 40' 57"
|51° 31' 11" N
|0° 7' 40" W