What it’s like to travel to every country in the world

What it’s like to travel to every country in the world

(CNN) — After decades of touring, both equally separately and jointly, Rachel Davey and Martina Sebova had each individual frequented over 100 of the 195 UN-recognized countries and territories on the world.

The pair, who met through an overland tour of Europe back again in 2008, had been getting coffee with each other in Melbourne, Australia, when they initially talked about the prospect of viewing the 88 or so remaining international locations on their lists.

They rapidly resolved to expend the upcoming two many years undertaking just that collectively.

Whilst the considered of traveling to so quite a few new places in a rather brief room of time was to some degree daunting, Sebova notes that getting over half of the nations around the world in the environment already ticked off designed factors a whole lot simpler.

“I imagine it would terrify me if I had to get started traveling to each nation and I might been to like 10,” the journey blogger tells CNN Travel. “I really don’t definitely feel that that’s even practical. You will need to be perfectly traveled [before doing something like this].”

The enthusiastic pair then began planning for their large journey, preserving as a great deal cash as they could in purchase to fund the journey, with the intention of shelling out all around five to 7 days in each and every region.

Vacation quest

Rachel Davey and Martina Sebova, pictured in Baalbek, Lebanon, bonded through their passion for travel.

Rachel Davey and Martina Sebova, pictured in Baalbek, Lebanon, bonded by their enthusiasm for travel.

Rachel Davey/Quite Hungry Nomads

Ahead of location off in 2018, Davey and Sebova, who had been jointly for around a ten years by this position, determined that they would not expose that they were a pair, and simply just journey as pals.

“It was extremely natural,” claims Sebova, explaining that they have been applying for visas in some conservative international locations didn’t want to possibility currently being denied entry.

“We had been traveling to a ton of nations exactly where even the thought of a similar-sex few isn’t going to exist,” she provides. “And we didn’t definitely want to place our private protection at threat at any stage.”

Davey and Sebova say that acting as however they have been only best friends “was not seriously considerably of a alter” and people today generally assumed that they were sisters.

“It was never a big difficulty,” provides Davey. “We hardly ever attempted to address it. We just failed to [tell anyone].”

The pair, who document their travels on their web page, Really Hungry Nomads, tried to take a look at the remaining countries in geographical purchase in which feasible and opted to vacation overland as a great deal as they could.

The to start with new state they visited was North Korea and the pair went on to journey to Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Bhutan and Pakistan.

In 2019, they put in 6 months touring across Central Africa and say that the grueling bus journeys took a toll on them just after a while.

“We did like 38 several hours on buses, at times just transforming autos, hoping to get from A to B,” describes Sebova.

Nomadic life style

During a visit to the town of Lalibela in the Amhara region of northern Ethiopia.

Through a check out to the city of Lalibela in the Amhara region of northern Ethiopia.

Rachel Davey/Incredibly Hungry Nomads

The pair say that some of their best activities were being in places that they have been a lot more wary of prior to browsing.

“The men and women in Sudan and Iran have been some of the friendliest men and women that we have encountered,” adds Sebova. “And most people would assume those people nations around the world are really unsafe primarily based on the graphic [we see].”

Eritrea, a little state based in East Africa, and the Caribbean island of Dominica ended up among the other stand out nations around the world they frequented.

In accordance to Sebova, the fact that they were being women of all ages in their late 30s who had been not married with children proved to be considerably controversial in some of the nations they frequented.

“There are cultural distinctions with just being a lady and traveling devoid of a gentleman,” she explains. “We were denied a few of visas just primarily based on that.”

Though many of their good friends experienced picked out to put their financial savings into home loans and/or firms in excess of the yrs, Davey and Sebova, who describe them selves as nomads, say they are “delighted to expend it on travel and be concerned about that later.”

Davey retains an Australian passport, whilst Sebova has a Slovakian passport, which often induced issues when it came to making use of for visas.

“From time to time it was like, ‘you can get 1 below, [but I can’t] which threw a spanner in there,” explains Davey. “But it labored out.”

Immediately after a long time of traveling together, the pair are well conscious of their strengths and weaknesses, and just about every get duty for diverse responsibilities throughout the journey.

They demonstrate that Sebova is extra in a natural way structured and focuses on making confident their working day operates as effortlessly as doable, although Davey is “much more flippant,” and much less skilled when it comes to navigation.

“Rach gets dropped in the lodge,” jokes Sebova, who also performs as a tour guidebook. “I constantly say it is a miracle that she manufactured it by way of each region. We make a excellent workforce.”

Pandemic hold off

They traveled around Australia in a campervan while the country's borders were closed to international travel.

They traveled all over Australia in a campervan whilst the country’s borders ended up shut to intercontinental travel.

Rachel Davey/Extremely Hungry Nomads

They had been on the street for around two several years, and were being just 10 international locations away from achieving their goal when the pandemic hit.

The pair, who had been in London at the time, selected to fly to Australia, and were inevitably pressured to place the remainder of the trip on keep due to the border constraints in spot at the time.

Even so, they ongoing to vacation, opting to get a camper van and travel all over the country jointly “with the borders of Australia closing guiding us.”

“We ended up executing the large lap of Australia in 18 months and invested a good deal of time in Queensland and Western Australia, which was remarkable, for the reason that we couldn’t leave the place,” claims Davey. “We lived in our camper van and it was heaps of fun.”

When vacation limits ended up lifted for Australians in 2022, they were being forced to hold out until the borders reopened in the remaining sites on the listing, which provided some of the Pacific Islands.

This proved to be especially aggravating, notably as quite a few of their friends were traveling extensively now that the entire world had reopened, even though they were patiently waiting for a couple nations to elevate limitations.

“We started out this journey thinking that we would complete this enormous quest in our 30s,” points out Sebova.

“Then we tipped into our 40s through the pandemic and we have been sitting down in a van, not owning something, nonetheless waiting around.”

They were equipped to journey to the North African region of Libya the place border constraints had also lifted, but experienced to hold out substantially extended for their closing places, Kiribati and Samoa, both positioned in the Pacific Islands, to reopen.

Kiribati at last lifted restrictions for global tourists in August 2022, and the pair flew in a handful of months afterwards.

Problem accomplished

They achieved Samoa, the final place on their checklist, on November 19, 2022 and say it took a whilst for it to sink in that they’d last but not least accomplished their aim.

“It [Samoa] was just the fantastic destination to finish,” says Sebova. “I experienced this minute when I was standing in front of a map of the entire world and thinking oh my god, we have been to each individual country on this map.”

The pair celebrated the enormous milestone with a buddy, who’d flown out to the very small island state, situated halfway in between Hawaii and New Zealand, to fulfill them.

When they returned to Australia in late 2022 obtaining frequented every single place in the world, they began receiving bigger media curiosity and persons setting up to inquire issues about their connection.

“They seemed at our feed and normally observed a pair, a little something that other folks just you should not see,” provides Sebova, describing that they have been joyful to affirm that they had been in a romance at the time they’d attained their focus on.

They began their extensive trip with a visit to North Korea back in spring 2018.

They started their intensive trip with a stop by to North Korea back again in spring 2018.

Rachel Davey/Extremely Hungry Nomads

“We had followers on social media who had been like, ‘oh my god, I always imagined that you were a pair, but you by no means explained nearly anything.'”

Davey and Sebova worry that, aside from the issue of safety, they wished to retain the discussion all over their journey targeted on the truth that they were being two gals getting on such a substantial challenge, noting that they when they initially appeared into the couple of hundred vacationers who’d been to just about every state in the entire world, the list was rather male-dominated.

“You see so number of women in this section of vacation, which is additional adventurous,” adds Sebova. “So we were trying to transform that, as very well as inspire other gals by exhibiting that it [the world] is not these kinds of a scary area.”

Now that they have at last attained their aim, Davey and Sebova say they have no programs to settle down and will continue to are living a nomadic life-style for as prolonged as doable.

They’re at present organizing a excursion to Thailand and hope to visit Indonesia later on in the yr.

“We’ve often lived in the minute,” suggests Davey. “That [being on the move] makes us both equally content now. So that is what we’ll do. I do not approach too far forward. We by no means have.”