Podcast #17: How we traveled the world for a year with four kids

When we planned our “big trip” a few years back, we didn’t quite know what a topic of conversation or interest it would be. Every once in a while we mention it casually, how we traveled for a year around the world with our four kids, forgetting that we’re dropping a bit of a bomb on the unsuspecting listener.

kepler and jo in cambodia

Kepler and Johanna pause and pose amidst the ancient temples of Cambodia.

Although in many ways it feels sort of normal to us now, our trip of a lifetime was anything but normal.

In reality, spending 54 weeks on the road, backpacking literally around the globe, touching down in 32 countries, with four kids aged 8 and under is pretty phenomenal. We’re frequently reminded what a genuine gift our travels have been and we’re so grateful for this experience that we were able to share as a family.

deep in thought on europe train

Riding through Switzerland’s mountains by train.

It’s difficult to boil down such a momentous year to a 50 minute podcast, though we did our darnedest.

At the very least, we hope this podcast gives you a solid overview of what it was we did and why, as well as answer some of your questions about how we made it happen, especially financially (that’s always the biggie, right?).

eating ice cream in cambodia

Hiking through jungles and up ruins requires a whole lot of ice cream.

And if you have more specific questions about how we travel, tips for particular challenges, or anything else you can think of, let us know in the comments. We’d love to try to answer them in future posts or podcasts!

kids sitting in cool structure in jaipur india

Our cutie pies in Jodphur, India (while Abbie wears the remnants of Rwandan braids in her hair).

In this episode you’ll hear:

  • How we decided to travel the world with our four kids in 2012-2013.
  • The WHY onion. (“Sometimes it tastes good and sometimes it makes you cry.”)
  • All the countries we visited — Argentina! France! Turkey! Rwanda! Cambodia! Australia! and on and on … (32 total!!)
  • Why traveling is the best education.
  • How we balanced work with cultural experiences and sight-seeing.
  • How we were able to afford the trip without a secret inheritance! (Hint: It wasn’t a vacation. Another hint: It wasn’t fancy.)
beer in cesky krumlov with family from train

Sharing a beer with a family we met while riding the train to Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic.

  • That amazing, serendipitous moments HAPPEN when you travel.
  • About a few of the challenges, including constant culture shock and transportation woes. (i.e. getting ripped off.)
  • Our favorite and most memorable parts of our trip. Plus our favorite food — so good that it was one of our 1-year-old’s first words!
  • That sometimes, it was the best thing ever, but by the end, we really were happy to return home.
  • The many, many ways that travel changed us … “Total. Complete. Deconstruction.” (But in a good way.)
  • People are beautiful.
ry and kids with uganda school kids

Hanging out with school kids in Kampala, Uganda.

Resources from this podcast:

We’re going around the world. Literally. 

How our family traveled around the world for a year

25 reasons we’re taking our kids around the world

12 things my children learned while worldschooling this year 

abbie and I going snorkeling

Preparing to get back in the water while snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

Our site Entre Family Travels, which documents parts of our around-the-world journey (not all, we only blogged part of it), as well as shares a bit from our recent 3 months in Europe, and plenty of tips for traveling smart as a family.

Airbnb — How we found places to stay that usually felt like “home.”

backyard in nazareth where kids played while we planned second bundle

The backyard of the apartment we rented while living for a month in Nazareth, Israel.

Adjusting to life on the road (a podcast with Tsh of The Art of Simple)

Podcast #3: When work and life blur together and around-the-world with 3 kids – with Tsh and Kyle Oxenreider

Podcast #9: Tips for traveling with kids and loving it – with Kyle and Tsh Oxenreider

Our closed Facebook group — connect with us!

As well as our ever-growing page of resources.

caden pretending to lift something heavy

Caden proves both how strong and multi-talented he is by lifting broken stones from the temples in Cambodia while eating corn on the cob with the other hand. Astounding, I know.

Quotable:

“Despite the fact that we’ve had a lot of challenges, it has not dampened our desire to keep going and to see more of the world and to get back out there again.” – Stephanie Langford

another kids in kunming airport

Our kids show off our family’s worldly possessions for the entire year in the airport at Kunming, China.

Go ahead and listen by clicking on the play button right here at the top of the post.

Or, listen directly through iTunes or Stitcher!

Thanks for joining us for today’s podcast!

Do you have questions we can answer? Are you considering a big trip too? Please leave us a question in the comments or via SpeakPipe below!

Top images: Left, a gorgeous tower in the quaint town of Cesky Krumlov, Croatia. Right, at a temple complex in Kyoto, Japan.

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