Welcome to Journal of Nomads!
We are Cynthia (Belgium) and Niko (Canada) and we're the creators of this Journal.
What is this Journal about?
Our project is to hitchhike from Ireland to Alaska, across 6 continents, with no time limit and all of that WITHOUT taking any airplanes. We want to show that hitchhiking is not dead! It's a very adventurous and fun way of traveling and absolutely NOT as dangerous as people might think. We get to see the world through the eyes of the local people and by sharing stories with them, we learn more about the culture and traditions than if we would take a bus or a train.
With this journal, we document our stories about the beautiful places we see, the remarkable people we meet, the cultures we discover and the lessons we learn. We also share our tips and experiences on how to hitchhike, how to travel on a small budget, how to financially sustain a nomadic lifestyle and how to travel around the whole world without taking one single airplane.
Why from Ireland to Alaska?
We both had been traveling around the world for years before meeting each other. Niko left his home at the age of 17 to hitchhike from Canada to Alaska and never stopped traveling ever since. In the following 8 years he hitchhiked from Canada to Guatemala, lived in Mexico and Morocco and hitchhiked around Europe. Cynthia lived a rather 'normal' life until she turned 25, then left her job and home behind to travel. She spent two years in Australia and New Zealand, traveled in Asia and hitchhiked and lived in many European countries.
At some point we were both dreaming of making an overland journey across the world to experience the vastness of this planet, witness how the land and culture change while crossing many borders and learn from the world and its many inhabitants through firsthand experiences. The power of our intentions must have been very strong, because briefly after we had set our own individual goals, we met each other in a very special way in 2014! This was the start of Journal of Nomads!
Our journey so far
After we decided we would hitchhike the world together, we traveled to Ireland to work and save money in preparation for our travels. We first lived in a tiny caravan on the property of friends, whom we helped creating a beautiful retreat center in the midst of the Irish woods. Later we moved to a tree house,where we lived for almost two months without electricity and running water. Our time in Ireland wasn't only a financial preparation, we also got a mental, emotional and spiritual boot camp!
We hitchhiked roughly 12000 kilometers across 13 countries over the past 2,5 years. We hitched our first ride in September 2015 in Sneem, a small village in Ireland. We hitchhiked across Central and Eastern Europe, spent one month in Crete, took a boat to Turkey and traveled for 9 months in Turkey before crossing the border into Georgia in August 2016.
We took it very easy in Georgia , where we lived for one year to explore the country and work as online teachers to save up for the next leg of our journey. In August 2017 we resumed our journey by hitchhiking across Azerbaijan where we took a cargo ship to Kazakhstan. After spending almost 2 months in Kazakhstan, we entered Kyrgyzstan where we immediately fell in love with the beauty of this country. That's when we decided to spend the winter here, while also taking the time to explore Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Next summer we're continuing our travels towards Mongolia, Russia, South Korea, Japan, China and South-East Asia.
We travel very slowly so we can spend enough time in the countries we visit to get a real feel of the place. We don't travel just to see beautiful places. We want to immerse ourselves into the cultures and learn more about the people and their daily life. This map shows you the distance we've made so far.
We also want to share HOW we travel the world. We don't take airplanes, so we travel from country to country mainly by hitchhiking and whenever we come across an ocean or a sea, we take a boat. Every country has its challenges, whether it's about hitchhiking, crossing borders, applying for visas, finding cheap accommodation ,...
We also share our secrets on how we make money while we travel the world full-time. As our journey advances, we aim to write as many articles as possible to help you with your own (overland and/or hitchhiking) travels around the world.
If you like what we do and you want to join us in this hitchhiking adventure across the world, make sure to visit our website regularly and sign up for our monthly newsletter! Come and say hello to us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter and subscribe to our YouTube Channel.
We love connecting with people from all over the world! Are we heading your way and you'd like to teach us more about your country and culture? Are you traveling in the same area as us? Contact us because we would love to meet you!
Are you interested in a collaboration? Check out our Work with us page!
We hope you'll join us in our travels, virtually and/or physically! Thank you and keep those thumbs up!
Lots of love and happy travels,
Cynthia and Niko