8 Wildcard ways to see the world

2017-12-17 05:00
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(Jacques Pienaar)

First, people travelled on foot, then horseback, then they took month-long journeys on sea in the 1800s and 1900s. Then they made tracks by train, by car and finally, by plane.

Free-spirited travellers have become weary of the fast pace travelling has taken on since we started moving around the globe. Ironically, people are now looking for more time-consuming ways to get around.

Travellers who are drawn to this type of travelling literally enjoy the journey more than the destination.

It is in the light of this wonderful new phenomenon in travelling that we've put together the ultimate wildcard’s guide to getting around. You don’t need to have all the money in the world, the only requirement is wanderlust.

The ways of transport listed below are all in celebration of ‘the way you get there’, and not necessarily the importance of getting there.  It’s also a lucky coincidence that these ways of travelling are more often than not cheaper and exponentially more rewarding than the 'normal' way of travelling.

Truck up Africa

An unique company called Nomad tours specializes in taking travellers to the nooks and crannies of the African continent in a truck.

Their mode of transport might be rough, but their travel offering has been refined over the years and is expanding to many more countries purely because their idea is an ingenious one.

Trucks take up to 24 travellers per tour, and whether you fill up the truck with friends, or just jump in with a few strangers, the experience is bound to be an unforgettable one.

Buy a bike in South East Asia

Forget Contiki tours and other forms of structured travelling. Forget busses and cars. The best way to experience the beauty and secrets of countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia is on your own behind the handle bars of a small old motor bike or scooter. You can buy or rent one relatively easily, and then sell it just as easily when your travels there have come to an end.

SEE: Girl fools all with a 'virtual' tour of south-east Asia 

Cycle the Netherlands

Everyone cycles in the Netherlands, and when you’re travelling there, you should too. There is something magical about the 'zzz' of the bicycle chain below your feet as you stride down the small cobbled roads alongside fellow cyclists.

The most mind-boggling thing about cycling in the Netherlands, is the beautiful bicycle etiquette practiced by (most) bicyclers. Plus, each bicycle has its own little unique bell, which cyclists use to warn, greet or acknowledge one another.

This small symphony sung by the bells is a travel experience in itself. 

SEE: Amsterdam bars in pictures 

Take a train through South Africa (yes, even if you’re a South African)

European, and many other first world countries are quick to brag about their high speed, high fashion trains that take you from one big capitol to the next in under .02 seconds.

Oh well. They’ve lost something that the South African railway has unknowingly preserved – the old Transkaroo with its old world charm, 6-o-clock set menu dinner and night gong at 9. South Africa’s Shosholoza Meyl is a gem, and every true traveller should experience a Transkaroo two-day trip at least once.   

SEE: The world's 12 most amazing train journeys

Hike SA’s wild coast

The only way that you'll ever experience the best hospitality in the WORLD is by backpacking through the Wild Coast in SA. The incredible and peace-loving people that live here have been untouched by social inequality and cruelty and poverty.

These mostly Xhosa speaking folk are not rich or extravagant, but their sincerity and willingness to host you in their homes would exceed your highest standards and leave you humbled for life. Contact a hiking guide, like Jimmy from Wild Coast Hikes, and ask him to help you organize a hike through the true heart of the country.

SEE: Wild Coast: The ultimate 5-day hiking guide

Surf your way through the world

The biggest expense whilst travelling is either transport or accommodation, with the latter seeming like a complete waste since you’re not even after a ‘destination’ per se.

Fortunately the dilemma of your sought-after journey has been overcome by Couchsurfing. Now people can combine their stay-overs with getting to know the culture of their place of travel first hand, as close as it gets, around the proverbial and literal dinner table of their hosts.  

SEE: Inexpensive Gap Year ideas for South Africans in SA

European or Asian B-BA-NANA? Ha ha #coachsurfing

A photo posted by Nadya Christina (@nadchrist) on

Buy a vehicle in North America

This might seem a little extravagant, but once you do a little SWOT analysis of the idea you’ll realize the sense behind it. Gas in America is cheaper than what it is in SA, and if you buy a vehicle that can double as a house, you’re sorted for accommodation too.

Plus, your wheels are a certain guarantee of a plane ticket home once you’ve sold it in the last city you visit. We’re not blind to the cons here, but they can certainly be outweighed by the pros and experiences gained. 

SEE: How Far From Home couple share what it's like to travel to the moon

Work on a Yacht 

Want to see the world, travel all 7 seas and still make bucket-loads of cash whilst doing it? This is it. Cruise ships are cool too, but there you’ll work too hard. Rather opt for the more larney yacht option and travel in style.

You’ll have to do a course first, however, which might cost you quite a couple of Randelas. But see it as an investment in your all-inclusive luxury travel ticket around the world. 

6:30am Here we go again ?? #charter #yachtcrew #fishing #lululemon

A photo posted by Jodie Ward (@jodiejodhpurs) on

READ MORE: Then and now - Travelling in the olden days compared to the modern world

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