Hong Kong became our starting point of our Southeast Asia trip, and it became one of our most favorite travel destinations. It’s a blend of East and West and is the perfect way to get into the vibe of East Asia. Hong Kong doesn’t need to be expensive, you can camp for free on a secluded beach, eat in the the cheapest Michelin starred restaurant, do some lovely hikes and even win money at the horse races! There are a thousand things to do in Hong Kong, so here are our 15 coolest things to do in the city that won’t break your budget!
A few weeks ago, there were some problems at the Mongolian border. Because a lot of teams from the previous years have left their broken cars somewhere in Mongolia, all the Mongol Rally teams now had to pay a $6000 deposit upon entering Mongolia. This deposit was for the Mongol Rally teams only. The authorities managed to suspend this rule just a week before we entered, but the organization warned us that we needed to be very friendly and patient because they would otherwise reintroduce the rule.
Entering Kyrgyzstan went pretty easy. Most European nationalities don’t need a visa if they intend to stay less than two months. The border guards of Kyrgyzstan were super friendly. They stamped our passport, we paid for the car insurance and gave them a sticker to put on their locker. They checked the car very briefly and wished us good luck for the rest of the Mongol Rally.
After finishing the Mongol Rally, we decided to drive the car back to Belgium. This way, we had the time to explore more cities. One of these was Moscow. We’ve heard a lot of Moscow, about how big and magnificent the city is, so we were pretty stoked to see it with our own eyes. We must say, it’s well worth a visit. Unfortunately, our visa’s were going to expire in a few days, so we just had the time to visit the city in a little more than 24 hours. Our day was well-filled. If you’re like us and don’t have a lot of time to visit the city, you can follow our one-day itinerary or get some ideas on what to do.
It’s freezing outside and it’s already after dark. There is nothing to see in the far distance. We are literally in the middle of nowhere. If there’s one place where we never wanted to get stuck, then it would be this place. The car just died on a small road, away from the main road, at the height of 4000m. Now we’re facing a really cold night in the car. Luckily, we can laugh about our own stupidities. The Pamir Highway is really testing our car to the max.
It is not so easy to visit a country like Turkmenistan. You better not apply for a tourist visa unless you want to book an expensive guide for your whole visit. It’s much better (and easier) to get a transit visa. However, the problem is that this visa is issued for only 5 days. So you don’t have much time to explore the country, especially when you’re backpacking or cycling across Turkmenistan. The country is very different from anything else. The government is in control of everything and they make sure that you don’t do things they don’t want you to do. Random police checks can happen everywhere, and in Ashgabat, the military is on every street corner to watch every step you take. That’s why Turkmenistan is the seventh least visited country in the world, receiving only 7,000 visitors per year. And we were one of them!