Ever Imagine quitting your job and travelling the world? Well, Dylan and Shannon Ward did just that! Back from their extended honeymoon, Shannon follows on from last month’s interview, and tells us a little about the second half of their trip through Canada, Iceland, the UK, and Europe …
Where did you head off to for the next adventure?
After the United States we headed North into Canada for a few weeks. One of Dyl’s best mates lives in Kelowna, so we headed there first for some mountain biking, hiking and food culture. We were so lucky to arrive during the Canadian autumn; the colours and overall vibe was so warming to the soul.
From Canada we went to Iceland for thirteen days. By the time we arrived it was bloody cold, but absolutely stunning! We hired a car and did a ten-day road trip on the famous “Ring Road,” with a few diversions to stay at picturesque inns and cuddle with the fuzziest horses in the world.
From Iceland we jumped the pond to the UK were we met up with some of Dyl’s Welsh family and proceeded to road trip mainland UK in the quaintest VW campervan, named Bongo. Bongo was our home for three weeks during the beginning of winter.
What an experience – a cold, wet and memorable adventure! The amount of castles we visited in those three weeks was unreal! This was my first time ever visiting the UK and seeing anything older than a couple of hundred years …my heart warms, thinking back to those stoic stone towers on the hills.
After road tripping and visiting more family and friends in the UK, we made our way to Europe via the underwater Eurostar train, where the final leg of our journey began.
How did you balance accommodation and expenses for the trip? Did you have a budget?
Our mission from the beginning was to keep our accommodation expenses to an absolute minimum. Depending where we were in the world determined our accommodation strategy. We did a TON of camping, sixteen bed hostel dorms and many friends and family visits.
Our budget was more of a, “find the cheapest option available and go from there” budget. For each country we worked out what we thought a daily livable amount would be, factoring in: accommodation, food and transportation costs. From there, any extra money could be used for experiences like a walking tour, bike hire, or a cheeky drink out.
I’m very proud of our budgeting; we returned home with $500!
What was the destination highlight?
There were SO MANY, but for our readers’ sake, I’ll give you the top five.
• Seeing the Northern Lights in Iceland.
• Spending a snowy weekend in a tiny Austrian town named, Scharnitz with one of our best mates, Mel.
• Visiting the Lakes District in England and doing a hike that took us along the tops of mountains and the valleys below, with a ridiculous amount of wintery colours surrounding us.
• Prague. Hands down the most underrated place we visited in Europe.
• Spending Christmas in Innsbruck with three of our mates and getting to hit the slopes on Christmas Day in the most perfect conditions imaginable.
Was there anywhere you want to go back to and spend more time?
One hundred per cent would go back to Austria. We were so lucky we had the opportunity to visit three very different places in Austria, each of which had their own unique charm and feel.
Where to next for you both?
Oh gosh, we have so many places we still want to travel to: Madagascar, Africa, French Polynesia, Spain, Croatia …
I think next up will be somewhere on our side of the globe, where we can do a live-aboard scuba diving trip. If anyone has any recommendations, we’d love to hear them!