Month 3: Travel Summary and Statistics

the great wall of china

Have I really been travelling for a quarter of a year already?!

I celebrated the occasion by taking a Korean cooking class here in Seoul, where I learned how to cook kimchi and bulgogi — two dishes that I confess to having never tried before.

korean cooking

My third month of travel has had its ups and down, and has been tough on me both mentally and physically.

The first half of the month was spent in Taiwan.

I started in Kaohsiung on the south of the island where I spent my days relaxing on the pretty beaches and hunting down vibrant temples. I then travelled by train along the beautiful east coast where I got to experience some spectacular scenery.

taroko gorge taiwan

At least for this trip, my stay in Taiwan was over and it was time to move on to China. I fell in love with Taiwan and one day I hope to return and live there for a while.

Despite having an extremely challenging time there, I’m so glad I got to experience the insanity of China and getting to visit the Great Wall is one of the major highlights of my trip so far.

However, after just two weeks there I was dying.

the great wall of china

I felt exhausted and drained.

I was fed up with having people staring at me and taking my photo wherever I went. I was scammed, shouted at and pushed around everywhere I went. I’ve never been so sick before in my life. When it got to the point where I realised that was spending every single day sitting inside hostels, sheltering from the chaos, and not bothering to go outside at all, I knew it was time for me to leave.

I spoke to one of my good friends I made in Taiwan, and found out that she had been feeling exactly the same as me and was currently relaxing in Seoul. After finding out that it was full of bars and cafes with free wifi I was sold. I booked my flights as a complete spur of the moment and two days later I left China.

It was just what I needed.

Seoul is the perfect place for me to be right now. I’ve spent the past week sitting in small cafes, working on my site and meeting up with friends for coffee.

dog cafe in seoul

So onto my statistics for the month!


Distance travelled: 4737km.

Countries visited: 3

Taiwan, China, South Korea.

Cities Visited: 7

Kaohsiung, Hualien, Taipei, Shanghai, Beijing, Xi’an, Seoul.

Number of beds slept in: 8

Number of photos taken: 709


Number of buses taken: 1

Number of trains: 3

Number of flights: 3

Money spent:

Taiwan: £121.94 over 9 days = £13.55 a day

China: £360.90 over 17 days = £21.23 a day

South Korea: £119.53 over 6 days = £19.92 a day

Miscellaneous: £216.20 for flights

Total amount: £818.52

Number of earthquakes survived: 1

The next month:

You’ll begin to notice that my future plans are becoming increasingly more vague with every passing month as I no longer become frightened of having an unfilled schedule. At the end of the month I’ll leave Seoul and head to Hong Kong. I have lots of friends living over there so it’ll be great to have a huge catch-up session.

After that, I’ll head for Vietnam and probably spend the rest of the month working my way down through the country.

Looking to follow along with my travels through my monthly summaries? You can read the previous month’s summary here, the next month’s summary here, or head on over to the monthly summary page to read from the very beginning!


  1. Micamyx|Senyorita
    October 18, 2011

    Interesting first three countries. As a Philippine passport holder, those are the three countries wherein we need to be really careful with the immigration. That didn’t stop me from booking a flight to Seoul scheduled next year by April. Goodluck to me when it comes to the visa part hehe. I would like to go to Taiwan too since an uncle of mine worked their years ago. With China, i don’t think i can explore it alone hehe.

    Have plans of going to the Philippines? I’m quite sure you’ll enjoy it here :)

    • October 24, 2011

      I’m sure you’ll be fine getting the visa :-) I’m actually planning on visiting the Philippines this month!

  2. Mike Lenzen | Traveled Earth
    October 19, 2011

    We just had a series of towns in Belize that we couldn’t get into. Between the constant pressure of tour salesmen, beggars, and rain things were not what we had hoped. So we hopped on a bus, headed to the beach, and things are wonderful again.

    • October 24, 2011

      That sounds pretty stressful. Sometimes you just have to give up and move on when a place completely disappoints you and doesn’t meet your expectations.

  3. Jeremy Branham
    October 19, 2011

    Wow, I am really surprised at how little you spent during those 3 months. You’ve had some ups and downs during your trip but that is normal. This is definitely quite an adventure!

    Any time you want some more earthquakes, try New Zealand (I think they have a few) or come visit us here in California! :)

    • October 24, 2011

      Thanks, Jeremy!

      The earthquake was horrible, and it was only a small one too… I don’t know how you manage to live with them all the time in California!

  4. Jarmo @ Arctic Nomad
    October 19, 2011

    I do want to visit Taiwan; all the Taiwanese people I met in China were awesome. China is very interesting, but it can be a bit too much sometimes.

    • October 24, 2011

      China was WAY too much for me… But Taiwan was amazing. Go there now. :-)

  5. Tyler @
    October 19, 2011

    Hahahaha! I love you random stats! 57 photos in 2 weeks. Did you consider getting a t-shirt that said “1 photo for 100 yuan?”

    You really managed to stay on an impressive budget.

    • October 24, 2011

      Thanks, Tyler! This month I really made a conscious effort to try not to spend as much as I have been doing.

  6. Nicole
    October 19, 2011

    Everything you have told me about Seoul has made me want to go more and more, and that dog cafe looks like heaps of fun! Can’t wait to read a post about it. :)

    Glad to hear you’re happier but… an earthquake?! Oh man!

    • October 24, 2011

      Seoul is such a great city, somewhere where I could definitely live one day.

      Yeah, the earthquake was in Taiwan and terrifying! Wasn’t a huge one but waking up to my bed rocking was certainly an experience!

  7. Julia
    October 19, 2011

    OMG the dog cafe! I NEED this cafe in my life. Definitely going to Seoul now, no ifs or buts about it haha. Also, you pretty much confirmed to me what I figured about China – that it’s amazing and diverse but very tough, especially on your own.

    • October 24, 2011

      You’re crazy – the dog cafe was so insane.

  8. Ian [EagerExistence]
    October 22, 2011

    “You’ll begin to notice that my future plans are becoming increasingly more vague with every passing month as I no longer become frightened of having an unfilled schedule.”

    Welcome to the club!

    After 6 months of travel, I’m now doing the expat thing, and learning the language in Madrid, Spain. Everyone I meet asks (in Spanish or English) “How long are you going to stay?” to which I reply “I really don’t know”. “Where are you going next?” is another one… “Not sure of that either. I just need a break from constantly moving and living out of a backpack. RECHARGE. You know? I’m sure I’ll come up with a vague plan soon.”

    Nothing wrong with being incredibly lazy for a while.

    • October 24, 2011

      Ian, that’s awesome! So many people think I’m really weird when I tell them I have no idea where i’m going next and when I’m moving on but I find travel to be a lot more enjoyable when I can be spontaneous.

  9. Lia
    October 23, 2011

    It’s nice that it took you less money per day traveling in Taiwan! xD and the Dog cafe is so cool!

    • October 24, 2011

      Yes! It surprised me that Taiwan was the cheapest!

  10. October 24, 2011

    …I did consider charging people to take my photo… Could have made quite a bit in China!

  11. I Hart Travel
    October 25, 2011

    I know it wasn’t solely on my advice, but I feel bad for steering you to go to China as opposed to S. Korea now. I did not know it was that bad in China. People were spitting at you or just spitting in general?
    I had no idea that it was that bad there. My friend in HK tells me that the mainland Chinese are a lot different than the “islanders” on HK and Macau.
    I’m impressed by how little you spend a day.
    I can’t wait for you to visit Vietnam.

    Dedicated my new blog to you after our convo on Twitter.

    • October 30, 2011

      I was always going to China after Taiwan so I’d have ended up there anyway! People were spitting on the floor not on me. The noise they made was SO disgusting though!

  12. Will - Gap Daemon
    October 28, 2011

    Wow! That’s amazing how many countries you managed to visit on this budget in the space of month. Truly inspirational stuff I say!

    Leads me to think though, why don’t people make themselves accountable for every part of their lives? It certainly seems to have pushed you further and harder than anyone else I’ve seen!

    • October 30, 2011

      Thanks so much, Will! I really worked hard to stay on budget this month.

  13. November 24, 2011

    The worst thing is definitely being sick in a foreign country… Makes me want to book a ticket back to England ASAP haha.

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