With only 1 month left in India, and potentially a lot of bureaucracy ahead, it was time for Travis and me to sit down and hash out our plan.
We pulled up a seat on our hotel’s patio and over a beer and great views of the Taj Mahal and the sunset, we worked. We researched more about visas. We tried every flight combo possible. We discussed different routes while looking at our map. We looked up info about border crossings.
We started with our four options: the Stans, the Caspian, Nepal and Eastern Europe. The first elimination went to the Caspian: I just wasn’t feeling it. As much as I read about it, I just couldn’t get excited. Next to be eliminated was our fafourite option, the Stans. In the end it came down to the cost of flights: as we would have to fly in and out, we would have to pay nearly $2000 just to get in and out of the country. It was way out of our budget, especially considering that we had to add an additional $200+ in visa and fees just to get there. Last to be eliminated was Nepal. While we are right there, and could cross overland, it went off the list because our final option, Eastern Europe, had one of Travis’s top dream destinations, while Nepal had none.
So, our plan is to fly to Kiev, Ukraine in mid-April via Moscow (we are currently working on a 72-hour transit visa) and spend a month traveling south until we reach Istanbul, Turkey where we will be meeting my mom. It will be a bit cold, but traveling on the off season should be nice. We are both really excited, now that we have actual, concrete plans! It will be more expensive than what we are used to, but we are saving on flights and visa fees.
Ex iron curtain, here we come!