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Trip Report Welltraveledbrit's Round-the-World, Turkemistan, Uzbekistan, India, The Maldives & Kunming

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I think I must have lost my mind...who does a six week round-the-world trip combining places like Turkmenistan and the Maldives? I planned it for my birthday so I have no one to blame but myself!

There's a reason people don't do this, it's a logistical nightmare. It seems like we've been applying for visas forever... in the case of Turkmenistan you have to get a "Letter of Invitation" from the travel agent before you can apply the visa! But now everything is in order, thank goodness the Maldives doesn't require a visa!

However, despite all the hassle including;
The Chinese Consulate in San Francisco turning down my visa application and saying I have to apply in Bangkok, and

Uzbekistan Airlines changing the date and time of our Tashkent to Delhi flight, throwing the entire itinerary out by two days, which meant I had to change all the hotel reservations and all the award flights I had booked...

we are on our way leaving on Wednesday! Yeah.

We're burning United miles and will mainly be flying on award tickets with Lufthansa and Singapore. I've combined a round trip to Europe, Turkmenistan counts as Europe (SFO-ASB, ATH-SFO) and a roundtrip to Asia (BKK-SFO-NYC-BKK) to make two round the world flights, this one and one at the end of the year when we'll combine the returns SFO-NYC-BKK, ATH-SFO, I still have to but a ticket between Bangkok and Athens.

Our route will be SFO-Ashgabat (ASB) overland through Uzbekistan for two weeks, fly to Delhi, a quick 10 day in India for some luxury, revisiting Udaipur, Ranthambore and seeing the Taj. A week in the Maldives relaxing, flying Delhi-Singapore-Male a fews days in Bangkok to sort out my Chinese visa and finally a week in Kunming visiting a friend, my first visit to China.

Looking forward to the combination of luxury in some places and adventure in others. We've wanted to see Bhukara and Samarkand for years. I'm so looking forward to looking at rugs in the market in Ashgabat, hopefully seeing a tiger in India and snorkelling in the Maldives.

If this is the reward it doesn't seem like turning 40 is too bad!

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