Hitchhiking in Turkey - Journal of Nomads

Why we hitchhike and sail across the whole world

We have both been living on the road for several years, loving the unusual, inspiring, unconventional nomadic lifestyle. When we met each other during the grape season in France in September 2014, we shared the same dream – going on a unique adventure across the world. We want to travel off the beaten path, explore known and unknown destinations and connect with people all over the world, experience how they live and what they can teach us.


Hitchhiking - Journal of Nomads
We often meet other world travelers randomly on the side of the road


Turkish market - Journal of Nomads

It doesn’t matter where you’re from, what you do and how old you are, we are all connected!

Our planet has evolved into a world where everything is becoming ‘quick and easy’. We can barely imagine a place where there is no technology to make our daily lives more comfortable, no internet where we connect with what is outside our homes, no airplanes that take us to the other side of the world in less than a day. We want to see the real world, connect with real people, learn what books can’t teach us and feel the true size of the planet we live on. We want to do the things that scare us the most and the things that we’ve dreamed of since we were little. Isn’t this the reason we are here? To follow our heart, to feel fully alive and to make the impossible possible?


It might sound cliché but it is so important to follow our dreams and be passionate about what we do. When we feel good, the people around us will feel good and everything we do will feel good. There will always be times where things seem hard and impossible, where the day doesn’t go the way we want it. That is life. It is like a roller coaster going up and down but the most important part is that we enjoy the ride. There aren’t really problems, only situations and challenges that invite us to grow and to become a better and stronger person. We shouldn’t worry too much about what will happen tomorrow but live spontaneously in the now and appreciate what we have in this moment.


Hitchhiking - Journal of Nomads
How can one feel more connected with life and nature than standing naked on a mountain!


We want to experience how it is to travel around the whole globe without flying and see if there are still places left unexplored. Can we go on expeditions like the explorers did hundreds of years ago? The best way to find out is to do it and mainly by hitchhiking. We both hitchhiked before and really liked it. It’s an adventurous way of traveling and it allows us to meet interesting people from all over the world. The tent is our new home so we sleep under the stars or stay with local people to see through their eyes how they live on a daily basis.


Hitchhiking in Turkey - Journal of Nomads
With our Turkish family


To prepare for this journey we spent eleven months in Ireland where we first lived in a small caravan and later in a tree house in the middle of the Irish woods without electricity. It was a great experience to see if we could constantly be in each other’s space without wanting to kill the other. It was also a great preparation to live back to basics without electricity or running water.


We worked hard to fund our trip. Cynthia worked in a hotel and Niko was landscaping and working in construction. We are aware that this money won’t take us around the whole world but traveling on a tight budget without having a monthly secured income is a conscious choice we made. We work hard whenever and wherever we can (see how we earn money while traveling) to support ourselves. We are creative and are finding ways on how to survive with very little money. It forces us to step out of our comfort zone.


Ask and it is given - An uncommon Love story - Journal of Nomads


We hit the road in the fall of 2015 and we just finished the first part of our journey: we started hitchhiking in Ireland and traveled 5500 km across Europe to Turkey. We crossed the Irish and Aegean sea by boat, traveled through 8 different countries and already made tons of new friends. Now we’re about to discover the beautiful historical places and rich culture of Turkey and travel off the beaten trail in Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan China,… towards India and the rest of the world. We take our route step by step. We are not in a hurry and it is hard to plan a world trip like this ahead of time. Only when we finish one chapter, we start with planning the next one. We also have to be flexible and see along the way how the journey develops itself. A lot depends on visas and finding boats. But if plan A doesn’t work, there are still 25 more letters in the alphabet!


Why we will hitchhike and sail across the world


We share our stories on the website and publish regularly a video on our You Tube channel. We want to document the known and unknown places we discover, the lives of the people we meet, the lessons we learn and the experience of an everyday life on the road by sharing articles, photos and videos.


We hope you will join us on this unique adventure! Join our monthly newsletter, stalk us on YouTube , Facebook, Instagram and/ or Pinterest and be a part of every step of the (long) way.


Hitchhiking in Turkey - Journal of Nomads



A hitchhiking journey around the world - Journal of Nomads
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34 thoughts on “Why we hitchhike and sail across the whole world”

  1. It seems that we are on a similar quest 🙂 Me and my husband started hitchhiking in September 2016 in Italy, crossed Albania and Greece and now we are in Turkey, heading to the east and north of the country and then on to Georgia hopefully! Our more or less plan is to hitchhike to India and then back to Cambodia where we met years ago…so it seems we are going in the same direction, maybe we will eventually meet somewhere at the side of the road 🙂 Good luck in your travels! Btw., I love traveling with the tent, it gives us a lot more freedom and security, as we always have a roof to sleep under. Although sometimes it is also possible to sleep in the mosques or prayer rooms at gas stations, at least here in Turkey as a friend told us – we have yet to try that, once we asked in a mosque if we can pitch our tent under their roof but the Imam took us home with him instead.

    1. That is so great to hear! Are you planning to reach India without taking airplanes? And how are you enjoying Turkey? We loved hitchhiking there, the people were so great! Although I have to say that hitchhiking in Georgia is also very easy and fun (but be aware of the huge amount of wine and chacha they offer 😉 ). I love sleeping in a tent, it makes me feel so alive! And it doesn’t surprise me that the Imam invited you to his house, that’s how the Turks are – very hospitable!! It would be great to meet your husband and you! Any idea when you’ll be in Georgia? Maybe we’ll catch you before we continue our journey towards Central Asia!

      1. That imam was actually in Albania 🙂 Recently we asked an imam near Adana, but he didn´t let us camp on th mosque terrace so we slept in the fortification wall instead. But here in Hatay, half of the rides we got people invited us to their house for the night, they are amazing. Also I am impressed to see how well they are dealing with the refugee crisis, especially the doctors (we met many medical students) are working very hard.
        Yeah, I am really looking forward to Georgia although a little sad that I won´t be able to speak the language – again! We will cross in june, that´s when our residency permit runs out…we want to get to India by land, hitchhiking, because we don´t really know anything about the cultures that lie in between and want to meet the people and see the places…after India, maybe we will continue to Cambodia where we met and started hitching togethr, or maybe we´ll look to go up to China…I really don´t know! Not sure how or where we´ll go after, maybe back to Colombia – I wouldn´t mind at all, I miss my friends over there 🙂 What are your plans later on, if you have any?

        1. Great plan!! Come and see us in Georgia 🙂 We’ll be there until end of June. We keep pushing our stay here as it’s super convenient with the visa and perfect place to live and work online before doing the big trip to South East Asia. Which route are you planning to take to India? Across Iran and Pakistan? We had to change our route a few times, visa and border issues so our latest plan is to leave Georgia in the end of June, hitchhike to Azerbaijan, the stans and Mongolia and from there into Russia and take a boat to Japan or South Korea. We can’t apply for the Chinese visa anymore in the Caucasus region and Central Asia, visa policies have changed again 🙂 So we’ll be making a detour :D. There is always a way 😉

  2. Hello, guys! It is amazing adventure! Mb u can give advice about how to find the boat? I ve never travelled on it) Hichhike- yes) But boat even cant imagine!)

    1. Hi Serafima!
      To find a ride on a (sail) boat, you have to go to marina’s and talk with the captains of the ship or make a little advert where you present yourself and what you can do in exchange for a ride. Most captains are looking for extra crew members who can help them out during the trip. Would you like to try it? From where to where would you like to catch a boat?

  3. Wow, hitchhiking around the world! How adventurous! You both are definitely very brave. Good luck in your travels!

  4. You are so brave by hitchhiking around the world by yourselves. I wouldn’t have the courage but then again, I always travel alone. I do agree that meeting local people is the best way to get to know a country and to open your mind towards how beautiful this world really is.

    1. Journal of Nomads

      I, Cynthia, used to travel alone too. I also hitchhiked by myself in the countries where it felt safe. This time I’m happy to have a (male) travel partner as it would be indeed more risky to hitchhike alone as a woman in certain countries that are on our list (it’s not fair though 🙂 ). Meeting the local people equals really getting to understand the culture of a country. And thanks to hitchhiking we’ve met already many beautiful and interesting people who really opened our mind!!

  5. Your journey is so inspiring and it really takes guts to live life the way you do, not everyone can do that. You are really enjoying the beautiful world in the real sense.

  6. Ah, so this is the back story. I’ve been following your journey for a couple of months now, but never got the full story of how you started and what you hope to achieve. I think your goal to experience the world through its people and cultures is very beautiful and pure. And brave! It was fate the two of you met.

  7. Y’all are very brave. I’m afraid I could never muster up enough courage to hitchhike. The prospect sounds far too scary for me. But I am so inspired by your story to start doing more adventurous things 🙂

    1. Journal of Nomads

      A lot of people wonder or think that hitchhiking is dangerous. So far we haven’t been in any dangerous situation and only met great people. We’re happy to have inspired you 🙂 What kind of things are you thinking of?

  8. Christine Krzyszton

    Inspired to read about your adventure. Good for you for taking this step and enjoying the world. What an incredible experience no matter what the future holds for you. Look forward to your journals.

    1. Journal of Nomads

      Thank you Christine! It has already been a very enriching experience and we’ve only crossed one continent (in our opinion the easiest one 🙂 ). We’re very curious where this road will take us, who will come across our paths and what the future has in store for us!

  9. So inspiring! I’m currently working on doing a similar thing, though not quite as extreme. Much respect for people who are not only willing to work for what they want, but are willing to navigate getting along and working with another person through it all!

    1. Journal of Nomads

      Thank you Jamie! It’s indeed not just about packing our bags and go. This journey will ask dedication, courage, creativity, overcoming problems and focusing on solutions, working with each other and with the people we meet,… It will not only be a unique adventure but also an intense inner journey. But we’re up for it and so far we’ve been loving it!! What are your current plans? Are you also planning a world journey?

  10. Woaw, I am planning to hit the road on 2017. I am planning to start at Bali, Indonesia going up to Vietnam. Oh i wish i could do it!

    1. Hi Joan! Ooh, you will love Bali! I was there 5 years ago and really loved the island! I would recommend you to go to the Gili Islands too! Maybe we’ll still be in SE Asia by then and we could meet? Are you planning to travel overland too?

  11. Love everything about your journal. The pics are great, the videos are my favourite but the written words are amazing. Can’t wait for you guys to be back in Canada so that you can come and share your story with my students inNicholas’ former high school! Safe travel.

    1. Hi Christine, oooh thanks so much! We’re very happy to hear that! And yes, it would be a pleasure to share our stories with your students!! And I’m very curious to see the high school of Niko 🙂 We’re looking forward to it!

    1. Hi Rob, that would be so great!! North America is the last continent on our adventure so it still will take a while but when we’re there, you’ll hear from us! 🙂

  12. What you guys are doing is really incredibly brave. I hope others tell you that all the time. To be so vulnerable really takes courage. That should be applauded. Kudos 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! This journey means really stepping out of our comfort zones and being faces with our uncertainties and fears. It doesn’t only feel like a big journey on the outside, it’s also a big inner journey but a very interesting one!

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