The beauty of travel is that there are a thousand different ways to do it.  Some people are weekend warriors while others float away on

Pyramid at the Mayan ruins of Tikal, Guatemala

cruise ships.  To some of the brave, however, a trip all the way around the world is the mode of travel.  It takes the ’round the world traveler’s a lot of courage to drop everything they have to travel.  And the growth gained through this kind of travel seems worth the risk.  Today we look at RTW travel.  This is Michael Hodson and this is why he travels:

Why I traveled the World

Frankly the reason I planned a round-the-world (RTW) trip was to force myself to take a long trip.  Here is how this worked for me.  I have always loved travel, but started solo travel later in life than most of those I have met on the road (my mid 30s).  In December and January of 2007-08, I took a trip to Nicaragua by myself for a month, just in order to see if I could handle a longer period of time on my own.  I loved it and when I got back I was convinced that I wanted to take a longer trip at the end of the year — after I had the time to shut down my legal practice.

But I also knew that it was easy to get out there on the road and chicken out.  Get sick.  Get robbed.  Have a bad month.  For whatever reason it would be, come up with some reason to just give up and come home.  So I did what I had to do to motivate myself to overcome whatever obstacle came my way and travel for about a year — I told everyone I knew that I was going to go all the way around the world, without flying.  I also started a blog about my trip, so that everyone could track my trip.  Failure would be public and somewhat humiliating.  So for me, failure was eliminated as an option.  The last thing I wanted to do was to come home after six months and have to deal with all my friends harassing me for years and years about failing or chickening out.  Not an option I was willing to even consider.

With that in mind, I bore down and made it.  Sixteen months (instead of the originally planned twelve).  Forty-four countries.  Six continents.  Hundreds of hours on buses.  Fifty three days on freighters in four ocean crossings.  Southernmost and northernmost city in the world.  Manchu Pichu.  Angkor Wat.  Top of Kilimanjaro.  Uluru.  Trans-Mongolian railroad.  Victoria Falls.  Copan ruins.  Best time of my life — can’t wait to get back out there and do more.


Author Bio:

Michael Hodson was a lawyer in Arkansas, USA that shut down his practice and went around the world, without ever taking an airplane.  You can read his blog at

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