Thanks heaps PTPanthera Tigris said:I love that way of travelling. Pretty flexible too. Can be as cheap or expensive as you like. For example, my wife and I have done it before. My wife likes creature comforts more than I. So often when we backpacked it was budget hotels or private rooms in hostels/guesthouses, instead of the absolute budget option of a dorm room (plus braking it up with stopping in and staying at friends places).
I like the freedom of only having a rough plan of where I'll be and hopping gradually across a region from location to location using trains, buses or even cheap hire car to fill in gaps here and there. I like getting to know public transit networks within cities too. All the stuff that lets you get into the fabric of a place and get a feel for how it works on a day to day basis. I'm a keen runner too, so if it seems safe, one of the first things I'll do in a new city/town is go for a run. I manage to cover a fair amount of ground just seeing every day life and what makes the place tick.
Back in December 2004 we backpacked around the north east of the US. Flew into NYC, had some time staying at a YMCA budget hotel in NYC, then we traveled by train and stayed with friends in Connecticut. Saw the Rhode Island/Massachusetts coasts, into Boston. Bused up to Montreal, explored Montreal, Quebec City and other parts of Quebec. Traveled back to Connecticut with a bit of time in Vermont (the New England region really is a beautiful, underrated part of the world) on the way. From there we ended up heading down to Philadelphia by train for a bit, before going back to NYC to fly out. Trains, buses, even advance purchase flights between major hubs are all pretty reasonably priced in the US.
We essentially backpacked in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore with out 3 1/2 YO daughter nearly four years ago too. She's now 7YO and we have a little one only 2YO. But once he's 4-5 (and his sister 9-10YO), we'd do that style of holiday again. When we're paying for four, got to try a form of holiday that will get our money the furthest, while showing the kids how other parts of the world tick.
Done a bit in my younger days , couldnt do the dorm thing now ,Mr Brightside said:Thinking of backpacking from Texas to Boston in Xmas 2020, I’ve never back packed before , anyone got any tips ? I figure it should be the cheapest way to travel
I’ll definitely be doin the private roomskiwitiger said:Done a bit in my younger days , couldnt do the dorm thing now ,
but if that doesnt bother you , you can certainly save a lot of money , and if you are alone its a great way to meet like minded people from all over the world on a similar journey.
Seems more backpacking places do offer private rooms these days as well
My wife and I stayed in the Vanderbilt YMCA in Midtown East. Small private room with shared bathrooms. Was really good value. There was another YMCA in the upper west side that was more popular (as apparently it's nicer for much the same price), but we couldn't get in. Bare in mind this was 14 years ago now though.Mr Brightside said:Doin a bit of research , finding you can get hostel rooms for between 30 an $40 a night, even staying in the lower east side for 10 nights would cost about 5-600 compared to staying in a 3 star in Time Square for about 5k
Kyoto is always a must. It's the Tokyo of old. Christmas will be cold so skiing is an option. See if you can get to an Onsen (thermal baths) but make sure it's a tourist friendly one. At that time of year get around via the Shinkansen. I think there's a month pass or something you can get.tigertim said:Just booked flights to Japan for Christmas, mainly for my daughter who is learning it.
Who’s been that can offer advice? Do’s, dont’s, where to go, where not to go, etc.
Japanese as a whole really don't speak much English. In the cities street signs are in English as well so that's easier. A lot of sign language and pointing. Japanese are helpful to a fault. I've had a local walk me to my destination. I thought it was on his way but after we got to the place he turned and walked back from where he came from.tigertim said:How did you all go with translation in language (assuming none of you are proficient in Japanese) ?
it helped me get by in Russia last year.Baloo said:Google translate has a voice recognition feature. You speak it, it will translate into Japanese for the local to hear. Not great but it will work (assuming you have a decent data connection)
If you aren't there already.... Only been there once 20 years ago but that's not a knock ..thought it was fantastic...easy to get around ... bought a lot of food in places where you ie everyone orders from a push button board, put your money in, get the ticket, give it to the counter staff, walk to the other end of the counter and a few minutes later a tray with your order is handed over..tigertim said:Good stuff, thanks again gents.