Представлено сочинение на английском языке Мои неудачные каникулы/ My Bad Holidays с переводом на русский язык.
|My Bad Holidays||Мои неудачные каникулы|
|If someone told me that holidays can be bad, I wouldn’t have believed. Since I’ve experienced it myself, I know they can. Each year we go somewhere hot for a week or two. My mum thinks that seaside is the necessary component for a good family holiday. That’s why we choose to visit southern regions or countries.||Если бы кто-то сказал мне, что каникулы могут быть неудачными, я бы не поверила. Но так как я испытала это на себе, то знаю, что могут. Каждый год мы ездим в какие-нибудь теплые места на неделю или две. Моя мама считает, что морское побережье — это просто неизменный атрибут хорошего семейного отдыха. Вот почему мы ездим в южные регионы или страны.|
|Last year we went to Egypt. In the description for the hotel I read that this place is the best for snorkeling. We were excited to see the colorful and bright underwater world. None of the travel agents told us about the danger that some Red Sea representatives can cause.||В прошлом году мы побывали в Египте. В описании отеля я прочла, что это место самое лучшее для ныряния с маской. Мы были рады посмотреть на красочный и яркий подводный мир. Ни один из турагентов не сказал нам об опасности, которую несут некоторые представители Красного моря.|
|The first day when we went to the seaside I’ve noticed that everyone was wearing some weird rubber shoes. Despite the fact that one of the guests warned us to wear the same footwear, me and my dad fearlessly went to swim. Imagine my reaction when I heard my father scream and call for help. What happened is that he stepped on a sea urchin, which is believed to be dangerous. The rescue team was rather quick. They carried my father to the first aid station, where doctors applied some medicine to his wound. That day he even had fever. Fortunately, he foot got better, but we then learned that there are lots of sea creatures in the Red Sea that can be rather dangerous and even deadly. So, that’s why it’s safer to wear rubber shoes.||В первый же день, когда мы пошли к морю, я заметила, что все были одеты в какую-то странную резиновую обувь. Несмотря на предупреждения одного из постояльцев о том, что эта обувь является обязательной, мы с папой бесстрашно отправились плавать. Представьте мою реакцию, когда я услышала, как мой отец кричит и зовет на помощь. Так получилось, что он наступил на морского ежа, который предположительно опасен. Спасательная команда отреагировала довольно быстро. Они отвели отца в медпункт, где врачи приложили какое-то лекарство на рану. В тот день у него даже был жар. К счастью, его нога стала заживать, но мы поняли, что в Красном море много морских обитателей, которые могут быть весьма опасны и даже смертельны. Вот поэтому надежнее надевать резиновую обувь.|
|Other than that, during this holiday I got some food poisoning. We were offered to try one fruit with peculiar smell, which later caused me nausea. After that I’m rather careful with new and unknown products. Of course, there were some memorable and funny moments of our stay, but on the whole it was a bad holiday.||Кроме того, во время этих каникул у меня было пищевое отравление. Нам предложили попробовать один фрукт со специфическим запахом, от которого меня впоследствии стошнило. После этого я довольно осторожно отношусь к новым и неизведанным продуктам. Были, конечно же, и некоторые памятные и веселые моменты нашего пребывания, но в целом каникулы не удались.|
Кто из нас не любит путешествовать? Была бы моя воля, я бы отправлялась в поездки по миру каждый месяц… У современных детей к окончанию школы так же накапливается богатый опыт путешествий с родителями, а может, даже и самостоятельных поездок.
Как отдельный топик, Travelling входит в число тем ОГЭ и ЕГЭ по английскому. Но готовить словарный запас по этой теме рекомендуется намного раньше. В современных учебниках тексты и задания про путешествия встречаются аж с 6 класса.
Ниже вы найдете словарь и примеры рассказов по теме для средней школы и ВУЗа.
Словарь по теме Travelling
- make a journey, trip — совершить путешествие
- travelling broadens mind — путешествия расширяют сознание
- to become a usual thing — стать привычным / обычным делом
- а gap year — пропущенный год, когда школьники пропускают год перед университетом, чтобы поехать заграницу и найти себя
- to go to the travel agency — идти в туристическое агентство
- to organize the trip by oneself — организовать путешествие самому
- to book the flight / to book the hotel — забронировать билет на самолет / забронировать гостиницу
- to prefer organized voyages — предпочитать организованные путешествия
- buy a package tour — купить туристическую путевку
- a low-cost travelling — бюджетное путешествие
- to go to different places — ездить в разные места
- to visit historical places — посещать исторические места
- to hike (hiking trip) — пешеходный поход, экскурсия
- to hitch-hike — путешествовать, пользуясь попутным транспортом
- date of arrival, departure — дата приезда, отъезда
- to arrive in/ at — прибыть в (большой/ небольшой) город
- to stay in a hotel — остановиться в отеле
- destination — место назначения (конечная цель)
- single (return) ticket — билет в один конец (туда-обратно)
- to book tickets — заказать билеты
Travelling. Вариант 1
We live in times when it’s rather easy to travel to any point of the planet. So no wonder travelling becomes more popular. What is more, our modern life is impossible without travelling. And there are many reasons for this.
A few decades ago it couldn’t be imagined that we would be able to travel almost everywhere. Now we can travel by different means of transport: by plane, by ship, by train, by car and even on foot. Some people like to travel by plane, because it is the best way to get to a foreign country fast. But others prefer traveling by train. They say that this method is more convenient and cheaper. Anyway, we have got something to choose from. And the way of travelling depends only on our opportunities and preferences.
Another good thing is that travelling helps us live and enjoy life. When we get tired of our daily routine, we need to change the surroundings. And travelling is one of the best way to break the monotony of our life. We travel, see new countries and cities, visit historical places, meet new people and taste different dishes. It brings us new impressions and makes life brighter. And that’s why millions of people all around the world adore travelling.
And finally, it is commonly known that travelling is a very nice activity. It’s the time for relaxation and thinking. Nothing can give us a great deal positive emotions and memories as travelling. It is often said that travelling broadens mind. And personally I believe that it is an undeniable truth.
Мы живем во времена, когда можно довольно легко добраться в любую точку планеты. Поэтому нет ничего удивительно в том, что путешествия все больше становятся популярными. Более того, нашу современную жизнь уже невозможно представить без путешествий. И для этого есть множество причин.
Еще несколько десятилетий назад невозможно было себе представить, что нам станет под силу путешествовать почти повсюду. Теперь мы можем перемещаться с помощью различных видов транспорта: самолетов, кораблей, поездов, автомобилей и даже собственных ног, т.е. пешком. Одни люди предпочитают путешествовать самолетом, поскольку это лучший способ быстро добраться до любой зарубежной страны. Но другие предпочитают ездить на поездах. Они говорят, что этот способ более комфортный и дешевый. В любом случае, нам есть из чего выбирать. И метод путешествия зависит только от наших возможностей и предпочтений.
Другой положительный момент скрыт в том, что путешествия помогают нам жить и радоваться жизни. Когда мы устаем от повседневной рутины, мы нуждаемся в перемене обстановки. И путешествия – один из лучших способов разрушить монотонность нашей жизни. Мы путешествуем, видим новые страны и города, посещаем исторические места, встречаем новых людей и пробуем различные блюда. Это приносит нам новые впечатления и делает жизнь ярче. Вот почему миллионы людей по всему миру обожают путешествовать.
И, наконец, общеизвестно, что путешествия – очень приятный вид деятельности. Это время для отдыха и размышлений. Ничто не дает нам так много положительных эмоций и памятных моментов, как путешествия. Часто говорят, что путешествия расширяют кругозор. И лично мне кажется, что это неоспоримая истина.
Travelling. Вариант 2
The best way to break the monotony of our life and learn a lot about different places and cultures in the world is travelling. I think that our modern life is impossible without travelling. People get tired of their daily routine, they need to change the surroundings. So they go to a travel agency, buy tickets to some nice place, pack their suitcases and set off on a journey.
Travelling has a great educational value because it is a chance to meet new people, visit museums and ancient sights, discover different ways of life, taste national cuisines and practice foreign languages. It makes us more appreciative of other cultures. The best way to study geography is to go to distant countries and cities.
We can travel by different means of transport: by plane, by ship, by train, by car and even on foot. It depends on our plans and preferences. Plane is the fastest but the most expensive means of transport. Travelling in a modern train can be very comfortable and enjoyable. We can admire picturesque landscapes from the window and communicate with our companions. When we travel by car we don’t have to buy any tickets or book a hotel, we can stop wherever we want and stay there as long as we like. Travelling on foot (or hiking) is quite popular among young people. It’s really exciting to walk in the countryside enjoying the beauty of hills and valleys, lakes and forests.
My parents spend their holidays travelling too. I was only 4 years old when they first took me to Turkey. That was an unforgettable holiday by the sea. We swam and sunbathed, went sailing and fishing. And we took plenty of beautiful pictures there.
Travelling is great! It can give you a great deal of pleasant emotions and memories. It’s the time for relaxation and thinking. People often return home with a fresh outlook on life and a fantastic zeal to do something good. And they usually say: “East or West – home is best.”
Лучший способ разрушить монотонность нашей жизни и узнать многое о разных местах и культурах мира – это путешествие. Думаю, что наша современная жизнь невозможна без путешествий. Люди устают от ежедневной рутины, им нужна смена обстановки. Поэтому они идут в турагентство, покупают билеты в какое-нибудь милое местечко, пакуют чемоданы и отправляются в путь.
Путешествие имеет огромную образовательную ценность, так как это возможность знакомиться с новыми людьми, посещать музеи и древние достопримечательности, открывать для себя различные образы жизни, пробовать национальную кухню и практиковаться в иностранных языках. Оно делает нас более восприимчивыми к другим культурам. Лучший способ изучить географию – это поездка в дальние страны и города.
Мы можем путешествовать разными видами транспорта: на самолете, корабле, поезде, автомобиле или даже пешком. Все зависит от наших планов и предпочтений. Самолет – самый быстрый, но самый дорогой вид транспорта. Путешествие в современном поезде может быть очень комфортным и приятным. Мы можем восхищаться живописными пейзажами из окна и общаться с попутчиками. Если мы путешествуем на машине, то нам не нужно приобретать билеты или бронировать отель, мы можем делать остановки, где захотим и оставаться там, сколько угодно. Путешествие пешком (или поход) довольно популярно среди молодежи. Очень увлекательно идти по сельской местности и наслаждаться красотой холмов и долин, озер и лесов.
Мои родители тоже проводят свои отпуска, путешествуя. Мне было всего 4 года, когда они впервые взяли меня в Турцию. Это был незабываемый отдых у моря. Мы плавали и загорали, плавали на лодках и ходили на рыбалку. И сделали много красивых фотографий.
Travelling. Вариант 3
Travelling becomes more and more popular nowadays. Even ten years ago we couldn’t expect that we would be able to travel almost everywhere. Millions of tourists go to different places during the year.
It is said that travelling broadens your mind and it is absolutely true. Even a short trip where you get to know different people and different cultures may change you completely. It has become a usual thing, for example, for American graduates from school to have so called “gap year” when they don’t go to the university but spend the whole year travelling.
Travelling has become much cheaper now. Thousands of people now decide not to go to the travel agency but to organize the trip by themselves. They book the flight and the hotel, organize the entertainment part and enjoy it. While there are still people who prefer organized expensive voyages, there are people that prefer low-cost travelling. It is the type of travelling when you find the cheapest tickets on the plane, travel with your backpack, stay at the host family and have someone from the local people show you their culture.
For many people travelling becomes the way of living. They spend months and years travelling without coming home and seeing their family. They work, travel and enjoy their lives. And in my opinion it is the most important thing — live and enjoy your life.
В наши дни путешествия становятся все более и более популярными. Еще десять лет назад мы не могли ожидать, что сможем путешествовать практически везде. Миллионы туристов приезжают в различные места в течение года.
Говорят, что путешествия расширяют твой ум и это абсолютно верно. Даже короткое путешествие, где вы знакомитесь с разными людьми и разными культурами, может полностью изменить вас. Это уже стало обычным делом, например, для американских выпускников из школы устраивать так называемый “пропущенный год”, когда они не идут в университет, а проводят целый год в путешествиях.
Сейчас путешествовать стало намного дешевле. Тысячи людей решают не идти в туристическую фирму, а организовать поездку самостоятельно. Они бронируют самолет и отель, организуют развлекательную часть и наслаждаются ею. Есть люди, которые предпочитают организованные дорогие морские путешествия, а есть те, кто предпочитает бюджетные путешествия. Это вид путешествий, когда вы находите самые дешевые билеты на самолет, путешествуете с рюкзаком, останавливаетесь в принимающей семье, и кто-то из местных жителей показывает вам свою культуру.
Для многих туризм становится образом жизни. Они тратят месяцы и годы путешествуя, не приезжая домой, и не видя свои семьи. Они работают, путешествуют и наслаждаются жизнью. И, на мой взгляд, это самое главное — жить и наслаждаться жизнью.
You ask me about air travelling. So, I’ve travelled by plane many times. Everytime it was excellent and nothing has ever gone wrong. To my mind, travel anxiety is a useless thing. I’ve never been afraid of flying. In my opinion, you should tell your parents about your fear. I’m completely sure they will help you calm down.
It’s nice that your sister’s boyfriend is coming to your family dinner. Do you think he’s a friendly guy? Has your sister ever told you about him? Is he older than her? However, bad marks which pupils get sometimes on the other lessons can reduce their potential and confidence in their abilities.
Taking everything into account, we can see that each opinion has its pros and cons.
Although we are not able to choose subjects for studying yet we have a full right to pay attention to the most necessary ones that can help you to succeed in the future.
Write back soon.
Вы спрашиваете меня о путешествии по воздуху. Итак, я много раз путешествовал на самолете. Каждый раз это было отлично, и ничто никогда не ошибалось. На мой взгляд, беспокойство в путешествиях — бесполезная вещь. Я никогда не боялся летать. На мой взгляд, вы должны рассказать своим родителям о своем страхе. Я абсолютно уверен, что они помогут вам успокоиться.
Приятно, что друг вашей сестры подходит к вашему семейному ужину. Как вы думаете, он дружелюбный парень? Ваша сестра когда-либо рассказывала вам о нем? Он старше ее? Однако плохие оценки, которые ученики иногда получают на других уроках, могут снизить их потенциал и уверенность в своих способностях.
Принимая во внимание все это, мы видим, что каждое мнение имеет свои плюсы и минусы. Хотя мы не можем выбирать темы для изучения, но у нас есть полное право обратить внимание на наиболее необходимые, которые помогут вам добиться успеха в будущем.
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Some people believe that travel broadens the mind. Other consider that you can learn about everything from TV, books and the internet. Who is right?
In my opinion traveling to other countries definitely broadens your mind because when you travel you can meet lots of people which talk on different language, so you can learn language and get a better communicative experience. More than that you can learn about inhabitants of a certain country and their culture and customs. In addition you can learn such different facts about different buildings.
Some people, however, believe that the best way to expand the mind is reading books, newspapers and watching TV or listening radio.
Firstly, you can do this at the same time with other important things. Secondly, people can spend less time and money on it.
I do not agree with that opposing opinion because I’m sure that live communication with people can give you a charge of emotions and develop your communication skills. Furthermore, so you can see all the sights of the city or country live!
In conclusion, I strongly believe that traveling is one of the best and most pleasant things we have ever experienced. It is also a great way to learn about people what we can not do this through watching TV or listening radio. Nevertheless, so many people, so many minds.
Некоторые люди считают, что путешествия расширяют твое мировоззрение. Другие считают, что вы можете узнать обо всем из телевидения, книг и интернета. Поступаете в 2019 году? Наша команда поможет с экономить Ваше время и нервы: подберем направления и вузы (по Вашим предпочтениям и рекомендациям экспертов);оформим заявления (Вам останется только подписать);подадим заявления в вузы России (онлайн, электронной почтой, курьером);мониторим конкурсные списки (автоматизируем отслеживание и анализ Ваших позиций);подскажем когда и куда подать оригинал (оценим шансы и определим оптимальный вариант).Доверьте рутину профессионалам – подробнее.
По-моему, путешествие в другие страны определенно расширяет ваш разум, потому что, когда вы путешествуете, вы можете встретить много людей, которые говорят на разных языках, таким образом вы можете выучить язык и получить хороший коммуникативный опыт. Более того, вы можете узнать о жителях определенной страны, их культуре и обычаях. Также, вы можете узнать некоторые факты о различных строениях или памятниках.
Однако другие считают, что наилучший путь расширить мировоззрение-это смотреть телевизор или слушать радио. Во-первых, вы можете делать это одновременно с другими важными вещами. Во-вторых, люди могут тратить на это меньше времени и денег.
Я не согласна с этим противоположным мнением, потому что я уверена, что живое общение с людьми может дать вам заряд эмоций и развить ваши коммуникативные навыки. Кроме того, вы можете увидеть все достопримечательности города или страны своими глазами!
В заключение хочу сказать, что я верю, что путешествие — одно из лучших и приятных вещей, которые мы когда-либо испытывали. Это также отличный способ узнать о людях, чего мы не можем сделать, посмотрев телевизор или прослушав радио. Тем не менее, сколько людей, столько мнений.
Лето в самом разгаре. Многие отправляются в путешествие. Обычно отпуск проходит нормально. Но иногда все же случаются досадные ситуации. О них и пойдет речь.
AT THE AIRPORT
My flight was overbooked , and I got bumped to a later one.
— На рейс было продано больше билетов, чем имелось мест. И мне пришлось ждать другой более поздний рейс.
THE HOTEL AND THE SURROUNDING AREA
My hotel was in a seedy area . — Мой отель находился в социально неблагополучном районе / в районе с ветхим жильем и слабой инфраструктурой.
WEATHER AND CLIMATE
The weather was miserable . The rain did not let up for a minute. — Погода была ужасной, шел дождь и было холодно. Дождь шел постоянно, беспрерывно.
INSECTS AND MOSQUITOES
We forgot to bring bug spray and got completely bitten up . — Мы забыли взять с собой средство, отпугивающее насекомых, и были почти полностью в укусах насекомых.
I bought a T-shirt, but it was a total rip-off . — Я купил футболку, но цена была слишком накручена.
A bottle of water costs $2 in the pharmacy, but costs $6 inside the baseball stadium. В этой ситуации мы можем сказать – it ’ s a rip — off (неоправданно высокая цена).
I ended up with huge blisters after our walking tour of the city. — Пешая экскурсия по городу была настолько утомительной, что я натер себе ноги (стер ноги до мозолей).
Something I ate did not agree with me and I got the runs . — Я съел что-то, от чего мне стало плохо. И у меня появилась диарея.
Возможно, после приема такой пищи была рвота – I threw up .
I was mugged while walking in the city centre – in broad daylight . — Меня ограбили, когда я гулял по центру города. Средь бела дня.
- У туриста украли ценные вещи — деньги, телефон, ювелирные драгоценности – wasmugged .
- Ограбление произошло, когда на улице были люди, возможно, были свидетели – inbroaddaylight .
- Если при ограблении было использовано оружие, тогда говорят – muggedatknifepoint(gunpoint).
Мы надеемся, что вам не придется использовать словарь этой статьи, а если что-то подобное случится, то крайне редко. Но на всякий случай нужно вооружиться и такой лексикой.
- Бабка ганя была одинокая егэ сочинение
- Сочинение исторический портрет александра невского
- Сочинение на 5 ру огэ
- Профессия путеец жд сочинение
- Сочинение описание трудового процесса художника
Do you ever read about my travel experiences and think, “Blimey, his trips are so smooth and straightforward. How does he do it?”
Let me tell you a something: All my trips are FAR from perfect!
And that applies to almost every other travel blogger out there too. We write about how incredibly wonderful our experiences are. And the truth is, yes – they ARE amazing, but as with all great things in life, there is plenty of struggle behind the scenes too.
In all of my personal blogposts documenting my experiences abroad, I try to be honest and write about the shitty stuff that happens as well as the awesome. This is because I want you to understand the reality of travelling from my perspective as a 30-something year-old deaf guy. It helps to tell my story, and makes it unique.
And most importantly, I want you to avoid making the same mistakes that I did, to ensure you make the BEST of your travels.
And despite all my bad experiences (including some near-death ones), I wouldn’t change ANYTHING. The good always outweighs the bad, and I have 8 years-worth of the most amazing memories I could ever wish for!
In this post, I have compiled a selection, in no particular order, of some of the worst travel experiences I have ever experienced so far, in just six years of travelling.
Disclaimer: This post in no way criticises the places these incidents happened. Some of these incidents are common – for example, the bag snatch in Vietnam – incidents like these occur all over the world, including London and New York City. Falling ill in India was my own mistake and could happen in any developing country. And that mosquito bite? I was simply unlucky.
Scroll on to read: My Top 9 Worst Travel Experiences
Table of Contents
Some of the links below are affiliate links. I will earn a small commission if you use these links.
My Top 9 WORST Travel Experiences
#1. Missing my Flight Home
In 2014 after a visit to Schweinfurt in Germany, I was at Nuremberg Airport, awaiting my flight back home to Birmingham early one morning. However, I was sitting in a cafe and completely lost track of the time.
The boarding gate was making its final call and the staff had called my name out across the tannoy system requesting I make my way to the gate immediately, but unfortunately I couldn’t hear this due to being deaf.
So by the time I got to the gate, it was too late – everyone had already boarded the plane and to my despair I saw the doors close on the plane, which meant nobody else could board the plane.
I was shocked and annoyed that I’d missed a flight for the first time. I had to book a new flight, which costed around €200 and it wasn’t scheduled until the next day, so I had to stay in Nuremberg for a night.
At least I took the opportunity to spend a day in the quaint city of Nuremberg. And since this incident, I started making use of Special Assistance for most of my future travels.
I wrote this useful guide on tips and advice for deaf and disabled people thinking about travelling abroad.
#2. Missing my Connecting Flight to India, Twice! (and Lost my Baggage)
I missed another flight in December 2014 when I travelled to India with a stopover in Istanbul Airport. But incredibly, not only did I miss my second leg flight, I was rebooked with a new flight departing 24 hours later and I MISSED THAT FLIGHT too!
Firstly, the flight from Birmingham to Istanbul was delayed by over an hour, which meant I was almost certainly going to miss the connecting flight in Istanbul. So I informed staff at Birmingham in advance, and they assured me that someone will take care of me as soon as I land in Istanbul, to ensure I get a new flight ticket.
So, as predicted, my second flight took off soon upon arrival, and so I was issued with a new ticket. But the next flight wasn’t due until 24 hours later, so they booked me into a hotel for the night. The only problem is, the hotel was quite some distance away, so I had to obtain a visa to leave the airport to get to this hotel.
The following day, the airport bus arrived at my hotel late, and worse still – the traffic was dreadful. It was total gridlock on the roads, and by the time I arrived at the airport, my flight was already taking off!
I had to explain this situation to staff once again and none of us could believe this just happened.
So, once again, they issued me with ANOTHER new flight ticket, and put me in ANOTHER hotel for the night – but this time, the hotel was right beside the airport. So I was DEFINITELY on time for my flight next day.
That wasn’t the end of my troubles though.
When I finally made it to India – my luggage wasn’t even there. I spent ages waiting at the carousel area while everyone else collected their bags and there was nothing left on the belt, so I had to report to staff that I’d lost my luggage.
It turns out, my luggage arrived a day earlier than I did. I had to identify my bags in the huge lost property room, and was relieved when I was finally reunited with my stuff!
You can read all about my first ever trip to India here.
#3. Scooter Crash in Goa
On that same trip to India in December 2014 I was in Goa to see in the New Year. Whilst there, my friends and I hired scooters to travel around.
We were riding about an hour north to Anjuna beach, and were slowing down towards one of the crowded roundabouts on the route.
As soon as I stopped, another rider came up too fast behind me on his scooter, and crashed into the back right-side of my bike. The impact caused me to tumble over on the left side, as the scooter is a bit heavy, and the crash took me by surprise.
Luckily though, I walked away from this crash with just a graze on my foot, as I was wearing flip flops (*reminder to self:* I should probably get a tetanus jab).
Did you know: there is a spa just for elephants in India! For more crazy and interesting facts about India, click here.
#4. I once got Electrocuted in Mexico
In the summer of 2014 I had a literal NEAR-DEATH experience whilst staying in a hostel in Cancun, Mexico.
I went to take a shower one night and it was dark and I was touching the wall trying to find the light switch. Suddenly, there was a bright flash and I felt a burning pain sear from my finger up to my elbow.
After the initial shock I saw the wall and realised I’d just been electrocuted. The switch panel was broken and there were loose cables sticking out everywhere!
I reported this to reception and when the receptionist came to have a look, all he did was hastily place some gaffer tape over the loose switches!
I had a lucky escape and I guess it was a good thing Mexico’s electricity grid output is weak (I doubt I’d live to tell the tale if this happened back home from 240 volt sockets!).
Edit: I forgot the name of the hostel, so luckily for them I have saved them the embarrassment of being named and shamed.
Top Advice: Get Travel Insurance
You could say this near-death experience was a wake up call for me to ALWAYS take out travel insurance wherever I travel now.
You might be thinking, it was just a freak accident what happened to me..
What’s the worst that could happen to you?
Well, you could suffer appendicitis and require emergency surgery. You could easily have your bag or camera stolen (this happened to me). A family relative could fall seriously ill or pass away, and you wouldn’t be able to afford the urgent flight back home.
For my travel cover I always use World Nomads. They are one of, if not, the BEST insurance providers out there.
World Nomads Travel insurance: simple & flexible
You can buy and claim online, even after you’ve left home. Travel insurance from WorldNomads.com is available to people from over 130 countries. It’s designed for adventurous travelers with cover for overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities.
Planning a vacation in the Yucatan? Despite my accident, I had some of the most amazing adventure experiences there. Here’s my 2 Week Yucatan Itinerary Guide.
#5. Delhi Belly In Dehradun
During my second trip to India in January 2015, I came down with the dreaded ‘Delhi Belly’ – an illness that befalls many, but not all, who visit India.
Considering that India is one of the most challenging places a traveller can visit, and, bearing in mind I was living here for six months, a few days in January was the only time I EVER became ill in all my time in India.
It happened after I ate a plate of boiled eggs from a street vendor outside the gym. One evening after a workout with a mate, he suggested we have some chicken broth and eggs to top up on protein. I made the mistake of eating the yolk of five eggs – whereas my mate only ate the egg-whites. Lesson learned.
So that evening at my host’s home, I suddenly began to feel unwell, and got hit with a severe case of diarrhoea. Yuk!
Luckily, my host’s wife looked after me while I was sick – giving me natural remedies which made me throw up. And two days later, I was feeling much better.
#6. Robbed by a Biker Thief
In January 2018 my partner and I were travelling in south Vietnam, having just seen in the New Year in Ho Chi Minh City. On our last night in the city, my partner’s bag was snatched by a thief on a motorbike.
These incidents happen everywhere unfortunately, not only in Vietnam. In fact, there are notorious biker thieves that prowl around central London in and rob passers by as they ride on the sidewalks in broad daylight.
Over in Ho Chi Minh City, it was dark when the incident happened, at around 7pm, and it happened very suddenly, right in the middle of the road as we were crossing it. We were completely taken by surprise, and were overcome with dread when we realised what happened, yet it was too late to do anything as the biker and the thief sped away into the darkness.
Naturally, my partner was very upset, as the contents of her bag included her iPhone 7 Plus, some cash, and some ID cards, though thankfully, NOT her passport.
We immediately reported the incident to the police whom took a statement, but we realised soon enough, that there is absolutely nothing they could do about incidents like this, in a large city of over 9 million people.
Moreover, my partner’s bag was quite thin and light, with loose leather straps which made it vulnerable to rip and therefore a very easy target. So we learned our lesson that night: if we have to bring our belongings with us, always keep them in a secure and strong, tightly-fitting bum bags that can’t be ripped from us.
Security Tip: When travelling in Vietnam, or anywhere else for that matter, I always wear my Zero Grid Travel Security Belt – a hidden money pouch that’s incredibly useful for stashing away my cash so even the smartest pickpockets don’t stand a chance.It comes with an adjustable, non-metal buckle too. Purchase yours from Amazon
#7. Missed my Flight (Again!) to Hong Kong
(Why do I keep missing my flights..?! To be fair, this incident was beyond my control.)
In December 2017 I embarked on a flight to Hong Kong via Paris, from Birmingham. The weather at the time was very cold and was quite icy outside, this had impacted the public travel systems all over the UK and as a result, my train to the airport was delayed and I was pretty late arriving at the airport.
This was the least of my worries though, because I soon found that my first-leg flight to Paris was delayed by two hours.
By the time I arrived in Paris around midnight, my connecting flight to Hong Kong had already left, much to the anger and frustration of my fellow flight passengers.
I have been in this situation before (when I missed flights to India) – so I was quite calm and knew that patience was key.
However, I was rather surprised by how angry the other passengers were. These were grown-ups, literally shouting at airport staff, and scrambling to jump in front of everyone else in the queues for new tickets at Paris Charles De Gaulle airport.
I just stood back and watched them make fools of themselves. It was unbelievable. Sometimes, shit happens. Just be PATIENT and relax! Our flight WILL go ahead. We will be put into a hotel for the night. None of this will cost us an extra penny.
There is really no need to take it out on airport staff who aren’t responsible for the actions of mother nature.
Related post: Top 10 Things To Do in Birmingham, UK (by a Local)
#8. My Arm BLEW UP From a Mosquito Bite
During my second visit to the Yucatan in Mexico, I received numerous Mosquito bites, but that’s nothing new, I got bitten a million times from my first Mexico trip, and actually – almost every tropical place I’ve been to – whether it’s Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, I’ve been bitten by Mosquitos (I mean, who hasn’t?)
Except during this trip, I had ONE bite on my elbow, which at first, was no different from the other bites, but it turned from a red swollen lump, into a small white sac.
When I arrived back in the UK, it was still there – a month later. And then, I decided to pop it. The fluid in the sac leaked out, so I casually wiped it. I never thought anything of it, may be because I didn’t realise it was an old Mosquito bite.
But then, the area around the mark, on my elbow, started to go red again, and it began to swell. And it swelled really fast. I applied some brandy to the area to try and disinfect it, and it was seeping, so I was squeezing more fluid out.
But it got worse. The stinging from the brandy was nothing compared to what came next. The swelling became gradually more painful. In fact, it was so painful I could not even sleep at night – I literally woke up clutching my arm, writhing around on the floor, and clenching my teeth so hard to stop myself from screaming in pain.
The small lump had expanded so much that my entire forearm frickin’ BLEW UP, so it looked like Popeye’s arm!
I sought medical help soon after and was able to clear up the infection on a round of antibiotics. The doctor told me I was VERY lucky the infection wasn’t higher up my arm, it could’ve been critical, instead, it spread downwards due to swinging my arms from walking, hence the Popeye forearm.
Click here to read how I easily saved over $1000 in just ONE month for my travel funds
#9. I Received the WRONG Visa Stamp
I was due to fly back home from my first trip to India in 2014 as I entered the immigration checkpoint at Delhi airport, something odd happened.
The border guard was looking at my passport visa with suspicion, and then asked me what date I arrived in India. I explained that I was only here for a week, but still, he was checking my passport photo and visa, with suspicion.
He then called up another guard who arrived and they were talking about my visa (I couldn’t make out what they were saying or what even was wrong). And the they pointed the the stamp in my passport, that I received on arrival in India a week earlier.
I didn’t understand what the problem was. But then I saw the date on the stamp. It says 2013. Shit.
Why on earth did I receive a visa stamp with 2013 on it, when my visit was in July 2014? I was just as perplexed as the Indian border guards were.
Yet surprisingly, they ushered me through immigration without another word.
It turns out, they made a mistake by stamping a year-old old visa stamp in my passport when I first arrived!
I was slightly relieved, and was able to board my flight, except I was due to arrive in Moscow for a transfer flight to London. I was seriously hoping this visa doesn’t get brought up by the Russian guards in Moscow, as I was really beginning to worry they’d throw me into a gulag.
And yep, you guessed it – the Russian immigration guard not only noticed something dodgy with my passport, he actually whipped out his monocular and was eyeing my visa for quite a LONG time!
Several moments passed, my heart was racing, and I could feel the stare of people behind me in the queue.
And, AT LAST, I was handed back my passport without a word said. Thank goodness!
So, those are my worst travel experiences so far! I hope this post doesn’t put you off travelling! Have you had any bad experiences abroad?
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Book Your Trip: Budget Tips & Tricks
Flights: As always, I source the cheapest flights on the web from Skyscanner and Kiwi.com. They are considered the top flight search engines for the best deals.
Accommodation: I use Booking for the best hotel deals and HostelWorld for the cheapest stays. If you’re considering Airbnb, be sure to check Vrbo to find cheaper vacation stays.
SIM cards: DrimSim is a universal SIM card that isn’t tied to an operator and works in any country/region.
Travel Insurance: Stay protected from theft, injury, illness, and cancellations. A safety net in case anything goes wrong, I never leave without it. World Nomads is my favourite agent for total peace of mind.
Tours & Excursions: I book all my fave activities and guided tours on Get Your Guide & Viator – they do superb deals whilst offering excellent customer support.
Renting a car? I always use DiscoverCars, make sure you book your car hire in advance. For airport transfers, I use KiwiTaxi for the best deals.
Need to store your luggage in a locker? Use Radical Storage to store your stuff in a locker in any city for just $5 per day.
Head over to my Travel Tools page for all my best travel tips & advice and everything you need for your trip.
Thank you for reading My Top 9 WORST Travel Experiences
Now you know what to do to avoid these awful situations on your next trip, ensuring it goes smoothly!
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Last Updated on October 29, 2022
Traveling Sucks Sometimes: My Worst Travel Stories
Traveling sucks sometimes, it’s a fact.
Life on the road has the tendency to unravel and spiral out of control when we least expect it. The best-laid plans can fall apart at a moment’s notice, and there’s nothing any of us travelers can do about it.
I’ve watched helplessly as my backpacking trips have turned to chaos. I’ve run out of money and become stranded hundreds of miles from home. I’ve been whisked into an alley and offered dog meat from a grinning stranger.
I’ve endured more maddening, humiliating, and miserable travel moments than I can begin to write about.
But none of these experiences will keep me from traveling, and they shouldn’t discourage you either.
Because each bad travel experience brings about a chance to learn, an opportunity to grow. When we travel, we sign up for uncertainty, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
The following 12 travel mishaps are minor compared to the problems many people face on a daily basis in places I’m simply passing through. I’ll never forget how fortunate I am to travel, even when I’m crashing and burning and everything sucks.
Make Travel Suck Less: My Best Travel Resources
Travel disasters can be damaging and costly, so it’s best to go on your next adventure prepared. Use the following resources to keep bad travel experiences from ruining your trip.
Travel Resources – Here’s a list of the very best travel resources I use on a daily basis. Use this page to plan, book, and maximize time on your next trip.
Travel Insurance – Injuries, theft, sickness – any number of things can go wrong during travel. Protect yourself and your belongings by utilizing travel insurance for your next adventure.
Cyber Security – Using unsecured WiFi networks can compromise your online identity. Use a VPN while traveling to keep your passwords, bank accounts, and other valuable information safe.
Stranded and Broke in a Greyhound Bus Station
Riley + Noel at 18 years old: The recipe for bad travel stories
I was 18 years old and chomping at the bit to escape the doldrums of my boring suburban hometown. After some naive brainstorming with my childhood friend, Riley, we decided it was time to go on our first cross-country adventure. No parents. No itinerary. No rules.
What could possibly go wrong?
So, we packed our bags and hopped aboard a crowded Greyhound bus from Denver to San Francisco. The ensuing week was a reckless and intense blur of questionable decision-making, just the trip we’d been dreaming of. The journey had opened our eyes to the wonders of travel, and we’ve been seeking out adventure ever since.
But our trip back home didn’t exactly go as planned.
A snowstorm between Utah and Colorado had shut down eastbound bus traffic, and we were left stranded in Salt Lake City’s decrepit Greyhound bus station. We were exhausted, hungry, and entirely out of money.
I hobbled to a nearby payphone and placed a collect call to my mom. My voice squeaked and cracked as I explained that Riley and I were completely broke and stranded. Nearby, a man with a tangled mess of a beard and a torn flannel shirt stared at me in silence.
My worried mother promptly wired us $100 and assured us that we’d be okay as long as we left the bus station immediately. We escaped to a nearby budget hotel and nervously giggled off our poor decisions from the safety of our dimly lit room.
The next morning, we joined a cramped busload of weary travelers and anxiously counted down the minutes until we arrived back home. Adulthood: 1. Noel and Riley: 0.
Lesson Learned: Travel with more money than you think you’ll need.
Inhaling a Cuban Cigar on a Class Trip to Mexico
It was the summer of 2004, and I was in the thick of a chaotic and life-changing class trip to explore Mexico with seven classmates and our young-at-heart Spanish teacher. One fateful evening, my friend, David, and I decided it was time to take our experience up a notch. We strutted to a nearby street vendor and to buy a couple of ‘authentic’ Cuban cigars.
It’s worth noting that I’d never smoked a cigar in my life.
We nodded at each other confidently as we took deep drags of our hearty, robust cigars. We coughed and chuckled as we blew the black smoke off the balcony of our hotel room. “This must be what it feels like to be a Cuban,” I thought to myself. David and I felt invincible. We were unstoppable.
Then, in a flash, it all came crashing down.
My hands began to sweat and I started feeling nauseous. I stood up out of my chair and nearly lost my balance. Staggering, I made my way to the bathroom sink and splashed water onto my face in a hurried attempt to balance my body’s chemistry. I glanced up at my pale, miserable reflection in the mirror. I was a shell of my former self.
I desperately lurched onto the ground. I flipped open the lid to the toilet, clutched its cold porcelain sides, and vomited violently until I had emptied my entire stomach. My body was drenched in cold sweat, and I’d never felt so sick in my life.
Grimacing, I retreated to my bed and curled up into the fetal position. With tears in my eyes, I trembled helplessly and prayed for a quick recovery.
“Wait, you didn’t inhale that cigar, did you?” David asked.
Lesson Learned: Don’t inhale cigar smoke.
Getting My Credit Card Information Stolen in Guatemala
It was a sunny spring day in Panajachel, Guatemala, a bustling and noisy village near the picturesque Lake Atitlan. I’d just arrived in town and was exhausted from a bumpy four-hour van ride from Antigua. Out of cash, I made my way to the nearest ATM and attempted a withdrawal. Transaction declined, no dice.
Slightly confused, I regrouped at a nearby restaurant and decided to do a little investigating. My checking account had plenty of cash to cover my attempted withdrawal, and I’d set up a travel notice with my bank, Chase, just a few days prior. I connected to Skype and called my Chase’s customer service line to get answers.
“Everything looks good on our end. You should be okay to make a withdrawal. Maybe you can try another ATM,” the customer service agent told me.
Stumped, I turned back up the road and made my way to the next ATM. This time, the withdrawal went through. I grabbed my money, hopped aboard a water taxi, and arrived off at my hostel across the lake. I spent the next several days relaxing in the sun, reading books, and generally not worrying about anything. That is until I checked my bank account.
Most of my money had disappeared. Poof. Gone.
Terrified, I squinted at my online bank statement as my heart began to pound through my shirt. 80% of my funds had been withdrawn in a series of ATM transactions in Florida over a period of a few days.
Florida? What. The. &#@$.
I scrambled to my cell phone and dialed up Chase as my hands began to shake. Travel meltdown mode was beginning to take over.
I frantically told my story to a calm and helpful customer service agent, and Chase eventually refunded all the money that had been taken from my account and canceled my debit card. I heaved out a big sigh of relief and put my head in my hands.
Turns out, my debit card information had been skimmed from my first attempted withdrawal and then used to create a phony debit card in Florida. Someone then took that fake card to an ATM and started emptying my account. Bastards.
What exactly is credit card skimming, you ask?
In short, a skimmer is an electronic device that is placed over a card reader at an ATM, which then stores the information of any credit card that is inserted. Thieves then obtain PIN numbers for these cards by placing a small camera somewhere in the ATM or by putting a fake PIN pad over the actual keyboard.
Though I got all my money refunded and my situation was but a minor annoyance, I was still completely incensed by the whole ordeal. Some criminal out there was strolling around with my hard-earned money and was probably going to rip off countless other innocent people.
That’s just how life goes sometimes, I guess.
For more information on credit card skimming, and how to avoid it, check out this extremely helpful post on the subject.
Lesson Learned: Inspect every ATM before inserting your debit card.
No Home, No Job, No Money: Using Resumes to Start a Campfire
Travel can be tough, even on the North Shore of Hawaii
In terms of ‘worst travel stories’, this one’s a bit of a hard sell, so stay with me.
In September of 2011, my friend, Danny, and I quit our restaurant jobs, sold our belongings, and bought one-way tickets to Honolulu, the capital city of Hawaii. We didn’t have much money and hadn’t lined up jobs or an apartment, but we weren’t worried. Everything was going to fall neatly into place, and we’d enjoy a stress-free existence living in an island paradise. That’s what we told ourselves, at least.
Fast forward a month, and we’d blown through nearly all of our savings. Neither of us had found a job or an apartment, and we’d been cruising the island since we’d arrived in a white 1996 Volvo named Mildred. We’d learned the hard way how incredibly difficult it is to find employment or housing in Hawaii without any local references.
Our nights alternated between sleeping on a friend’s apartment floor and setting up camp on Oahu’s picturesque North Shore. We were essentially homeless and unemployed, and hopelessness was beginning to set in.
Then, during a fateful night at Malaekahana Beach Campgrounds, a pivotal string of events unfolded. Danny and I had been trying unsuccessfully to start a campfire with a mound of damp kindling we’d gathered near the beach. Demoralized by our inability to find jobs or an apartment, we weren’t about to fail ourselves on camping’s most basic level. We didn’t want a campfire, we needed one. Badly.
So, we scoured through our car in search of paper, cardboard, anything to help get our fire started. Having already burned through everything flammable on previous excursions, we were left with two choices:
1. Burn our resumes.
2. Spend the rest of our evening without a campfire, in a dark depression.
Without hesitation, we decided to torch the rest of our resumes and stared quietly at our crackling campfire. No jobs. No home. No money. No resumes.
As we gazed blankly into the campfire, we realized that we were left with two tough choices:
1. Use what little money we had left to fly back to Colorado, and move back in with our parents.
2. Drive straight to Kinkos in the morning, print off some more resumes, and make it work.
We chose option number two and, as fate would have it, we found a couple of restaurant jobs and moved into a humble Hawaiian apartment the very next week.
Lesson Learned: Never give up.
Hungover Food Poisoning: My 30th Birthday Present to Myself
As you read through my stories, you might be realizing that many of my worst travel experiences are self-inflicted. Sure, traveling sucks on occasion, but my own poor decisions are largely to blame much of the time.
That said, here’s the story of my 30th birthday.
To celebrate three semi-successful decades on earth, I traveled with my girlfriend, Keri, and my friend, Nate, to Sayulita, Mexico – a bustling party town on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. I’d fallen in love with Sayulita as a 20-year-old studying abroad in Guadalajara, so it felt fitting to the decade as it had begun – by drinking tequila, eating tacos, and swimming in the ocean.
The night of my 30th birthday played out as predicted, and I drank copious amounts of tequila and wandered the streets in search of food. Nate stayed home sick and Keri was recovering from a bout of food poisoning, so I was essentially a one-man crew of self-destruction.
Keri stuck by my side as I blabbered in slurred Spanish at taco stand workers into the wee hours of the morning. The tequila eventually rendered me useless and Keri gripped my hand tightly as I staggered back down the dusty dirt road towards our Airbnb. It was 3:00 a.m. and I was in rare form.
The following morning, we made our way to a nearby beach to enjoy a lazy day soaking in the sun. As we lay our towels down and settled in, a small wedding began 50 feet away from us. It was then my hangover began to take hold. A sharp headache crept in and my mouth was parched and chalky. All I could taste was tequila.
Then, the food poisoning hit. My stomach grumbled as I twitched and groaned in the sand. My headache grew stronger. I stared hopelessly at the wedding taking place in the distance. The bride kissed the groom as I staggered to the bushes to vomit. The wedding-goers cheered in delight. I deserved every bit of pain I was experiencing.
The rest of the day was filled with stomach-twisting and head-pounding regret, and I began to realize that I’d gotten my 30s off on the entirely wrong foot.
Lesson Learned: Don’t act like you’re 20 when you’re 30.
Nearly Eating Dog Meat in Vietnam
Before I ever visited Vietnam in the winter of 2018, I’d heard all the rumors.
Everyone eats dog in Vietnam! They capture strays and cook them for dinner! You’ll never truly know what meat they’re actually serving you in your pho!
I love dogs. I’ve shared a home with dogs nearly my whole life. Dogs have brought me endless comfort, joy, and loyal companionship. I have zero desire to eat dog meat, and I wasn’t about to start because I was traveling to Vietnam.
That said, I do understand that many countries around the world choose to eat dog meat. I can handle that because it’s a cultural thing. No dog meat for me, though. I’m good.
But, on a motorbike trip around Northern Vietnam, my friend, Cris, and I let our guard down and came awfully close to eating the forbidden meat.
We’d just left the tourist-packed town of Ha Long and had been navigating the bumpy country roads back towards Hanoi. It was the final day of our eventful 10-day, 1,700-kilometer journey. A few hours of riding later, we’d become famished. We’d skipped breakfast that morning and finding food was our top priority.
So, when a grinning man in a dusty and dilapidated town flagged us down and whisked us into an alley to eat, we were more than willing to indulge. Big mistake.
He motioned for us to have a seat and began to prepare our meals. Cris, a lifelong chef, glanced over his shoulder to observe what the man was putting together.
“I think that’s dog meat,” Cris exclaimed worriedly. “Those look like dog paws.”
I stood up and looked over the man’s shoulder. Cris was right. The man was about to cook us dog meat. I frantically got out my phone, opened the Google translate app, and asked the man what he was about to cook.
“I am the owner of dog meat,” was his translated response.
We immediately started shaking our heads and motioned for him to stop preparing the meal. I explained to the man that we don’t eat dogs where we’re from and asked him if he had any chicken or beef he could prepare for us. Nope, dog was the only thing on the menu that day.
Mortified, we got out of our seats and apologized to the man profusely. We attempted to pay him for his troubles, but he laughed and motioned us back towards the street.
We shook our heads in disbelief, hopped back on our bikes, and sped out of town as fast as we could. It would be an hour until we found another restaurant, which was fine with me. I didn’t have much of an appetite anyway.
Lesson Learned: Always ask before you order mysterious food in a foreign country.
Insane Weather Derailing My Icelandic Trek
Iceland is as unforgiving as it is beautiful
Back in 2014, I flew across the world to embark on Iceland’s daunting Laugavegur Trail. This particular trek is known for its harsh, treeless terrain, frequent rain, and fierce winds. Only experienced backpackers are recommended to attempt this trek.
I should probably mention that I’d only been on one overnight backpacking trip in my life at the time.
When I showed up at the trailhead, it’s safe to say that I was overwhelmingly unprepared.
My backpack was overstuffed and bulging at the seams with 50 pounds of bulky gear. I didn’t pack a map, and for some reason, I hadn’t trained at all. I was by no means an experienced trekker, but I was fearless. That had to count for something, right?
I felt blissful for the first few hours of my hike as I soaked in some of the most incredible landscapes I’d ever seen. I trudged past my planned camp spot for the evening and kept hiking. I decided I was going to take advantage of Iceland’s midnight sun and shave a day off my itinerary. Nothing could stop me, or so I thought.
Hours later, I arrived at the next camp completely exhausted and began to set up my tent. It was then, things started to get interesting.
Howling Icelandic torrents of wind shook nearby tents. Dumping rain pelted me from every direction. My heart rate started to rise as I struggled against the brutal weather to set up my tent.
My tent poles began to flex and bend as the wind caved in my shelter repeatedly. Water began slowly seeping in through the sides and soaked all of my belongings. My gear was failing me and I was paying the price.
In a panic, I jogged to a nearby sleeping hut and asked the staff if there was any room for me to sleep on the floor. There wasn’t, but they suggested I pack up shop and hike two more miles down the trail if I wanted to sleep under a roof. No way in hell was I packing up all my belongings and hiking in that weather.
I returned to my tent as the weather started to worsen. I tucked into my sopping sleeping bag and started shaking. I was chilled to the bone.
Suddenly, a hut warden ran to my tent and started screaming for me to evacuate. My inflatable camping pillow got swept up in a gust of wind and disappeared into the night as we frantically jammed my tent and other gear into my backpack. I lugged my belongings into the hut and collapsed, joining dozens of other weary trekkers, similarly assaulted by Laugevegur’s weather.
I ended up getting a much-needed night of sleep on the floor of the hut before a bus arrived to take me, my waterlogged belongings, and my bruised ego back to Reykjavik.
Lesson Learned: I learned seven lessons, actually. You can read about them all here.
Embarking on the Trek of My Dreams, Injuring My Knee
In the summer of 2017, three years after my disastrous Laugavegurin Trail debacle, I decided to hike the Colorado Trail. In the years following Iceland, I had been on dozens of backpacking trips and trimmed my ultralight backpacking setup to under 10 pounds. No longer an amateur backpacker, I was ready to take on the trek of my dreams.
To prepare for the 486-mile Colorado Trail I meticulously studied maps, waffled over gear choices, and meal prepped for the entire journey. I prepared multiple boxes of food and supplies and shipped myself care packages to pickups along the trail. Nasty weather was the least of my worries, as I had gear that could handle it.
My first five days on the trail were blissful. I was breezing through the wide-open trails and averaging about 16 miles a day – keeping pace with my personal goal. The weather was exceptional and the landscape was becoming more beautiful by the day. I listened to my favorite hiking music, reveled in my solitude, and shed occasional tears of joy.
Then, on the sixth day of my trip, the physical exertion caught up to me. Dull pain began to ache on the outside of my right knee on ascents and descents, which slowed down my pace considerably. I took plenty of Advil, stretched constantly, and adjusted my hiking posture in an effort to keep the pain at bay. It was working, more or less.
Then, 13 miles into my sixth day, I came across a perfect campsite. I pondered setting up camp for the day to rest my knee but eventually decided to keep moving. I wanted to cover my 16 miles, and figured I’d find a suitable site a few miles up the trail. I’d be fine, I told myself.
The next three miles of the trail offered zero realistic opportunities to camp, and my knee began to ache more and more as I limped onwards. Just before nightfall, I decided to set up camp at a less-than-ideal site and tucked into bed – cursing myself for pushing on when I should have stopped.
On day seven, I took a few more Advil, stretched, and got back on the trail. My knee felt solid for my first hour of hiking until, on a steep downhill stretch, searing pain suddenly hit the outside of my knee. I took a contemplative break, stretched, then attempted to push onwards. The pain got worse. I could only put weight on one leg, and the next road was 30 miles further up the trail.
The harsh reality of the situation caught up to me as my eyes welled up with tears. I had to turn back.
I limped three miles back to the nearest road, took a deep breath, and stuck my thumb out at the cars passing by. I hitchhiked into the nearby town of Fairplay, walked into a bar, and called a friend who agreed to pick me up. Slowly sipping a beer, I stared blankly at the dusty liquor bottles behind the bartender. I sunk into my seat as I realized my dream was over, for the time being at least.
I visited the doctor the next day and was diagnosed with iliotibial band friction syndrome, which although very painful, healed up without surgery. Discouraged and depressed, I spent the next few weeks lamenting my poor decision to push myself too hard.
Lesson Learned: Train properly and listen to your body.
Accidentally Van Dwelling in Skid Row
In the fall of 2017, Keri and I learned that we prefer to travel solo during a cramped 67-day road trip around the western U.S. in my converted Chevy Astrovan. Aside from realizing that me-time is absolutely vital to keep our relationship healthy, we learned many other meaningful lessons about travel, love, and van life.
Like this one: Don’t park your camper van in Skid Row with the intention of staying the night.
Skid Row, for those of you who haven’t heard of it, is an infamous neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles known for its open drug use, rampant crime, and abnormally high homeless population. While I don’t judge or look down on anyone who spends their days in Skid Row, there are other places I’d rather park and try for a restful night of sleep.
During our few days in L.A., Keri and I had learned that it’s really difficult to find cheap and legal overnight parking within its chaotic confines. So, when I came across a flat (and free!) spot near downtown, I backed in and humbly celebrated my van life prowess. It was still daytime when we’d arrived, so Keri and I left for a few hours to have dinner in Little Tokyo.
After a few hours of exploring, we returned to the van just after nightfall. The parked cars on the crowded street had thinned out drastically while we’d been strolling the town. Keri and I, exhausted from a busy day in the city, brushed our teeth and tucked into bed.
After spending a good amount of time tossing and turning, a cacophony of riff-raff slowly began outside the van. Loud music and shouting echoed down the street from a car parked nearby. Various car alarms blared in the distance. My heartbeat began to pick up. I crawled to the front seat and peeked out the window to see that zero cars remained parked on the street around us. Dark figures in the distance lurched down the sidewalk under fluttering street lights.
I nervously got on my phone to study exactly where the hell I had parked for the night. It didn’t take long to realize that I’d parked on the outskirts of one of the most notorious neighborhoods in the U.S. We’d parked our van in Skid Row and were attempting to sleep for the night. Ha.
Consumed by anxiety, I frantically awoke Keri (who can sleep through anything) and got her up to speed on our situation. She was barely conscious and couldn’t be bothered, so I made the executive decision to get us the hell out of there immediately.
I drove us to Hollywood, a slightly less seedy neighborhood, and pulled into a quiet parking space. Keri slept like a rock as I tossed and turned the night away.
Lesson Learned: When van living, park in a safe place every night. No exceptions.
Hiking a Volcano, Enduring the Most Uncomfortable Sleeping Situation of My Life
Volcano Fuego at sunrise: worth a miserable night of no sleep?
As you may know by reading my blog, I’m big into the hiking and backpacking scene. I’m an ultralight gear junkie and I’m always planning my next big trip.
So, when I was presented with the chance to join on an overnight backpacking trip to Acatenango — a massive volcano near Antigua, Guatemala — I was all over it. On this particular hike, I would have the chance to witness the nearby Volcano Fuego violently erupt and spew lava into the black night sky. Sign me up immediately, please.
I’d embarked on my adventure as part of an organized group of about 15 other giddy travelers, and we spent the entire first day huffing and puffing up the side of Acatenango for an ass-kicking 5 miles and 4,000 feet of elevation gain.
Relieved and exhausted, we finally arrived at base camp just before nightfall. We spent our evening observing the adjacent Volcano Fuego for eruptions, sipping mysterious Guatemalan booze, and huddling around a campfire that was far too small to keep anyone warm. The sky was overcast and the volcano was inactive, so the night was rather uneventful.
We made our way towards our tents to get some rest before we hiked the last 1,000 feet of elevation gain to Acatenango’s summit for sunrise. I endured the worst night of sleep of my entire life inside a crowded tent full of weary travelers.
Chilling rain and intense wind began to pick up just as we entered the tent and began to prep for bed. The weathered and worn shelter flapped around like a windsock in a hurricane, as our ancient sleeping bags offered little protection from the plummeting temperatures. As I closed my eyes and attempted to sleep, ice-cold water began to dribble on my forehead.
The four of us tossed, turned, shivered, and grumbled for five straight hours as the awful weather continued to run its course. None of us caught a wink of sleep. At 4:00 a.m., our tour guide shouted for everyone to wake up. It was now time to hike straight uphill to the summit of the volcano in the dead of the night.
We staggered like zombies through the howling wind of a pitch-black night and wondered out loud just what the hell we’d gotten ourselves into.
Lesson Learned: Choose your tours carefully, and always check the forecast.
Winning $1,200 in Las Vegas then Promptly Losing it All on My Birthday
If you know me well, you’re probably aware that I enjoy a good gambling binge from time to time. Las Vegas is one of my favorite travel destinations, and blackjack is my biggest weakness while I’m visiting.
Let’s rewind back to March 8th of 2015, the day before my 28th birthday. I’d flown out to Sin City with a couple of friends, and it was our full intention to ravage Vegas’ world-class food scene, soak in sun by the pool, and gamble for hours on end. We hit the ground running as soon as our plane landed.
My first round at the blackjack tables went swimmingly. For hours, a flurry of cards, cocktails, and casino chips overwhelmed my existence. My friends and I shouted as I connected with big bet after big bet. When it was all said and done I was $1,200 richer. I felt unstoppable. Days like this are why I love Vegas.
The next morning, we all emerged from our hotel rooms in sky-high spirits. Elated from my recent victory, I treated my friends and a couple of strangers to an all-you-can-eat buffet at the MGM Grand. My pockets were full, and it was my birthday. Life was good.
And after breakfast, I promptly began to redistribute my winnings back into the casinos.
The blackjack dealers, once a lovely sight, began to deal me a terribly cold run of cards. My once-formidable chip stack evaporated throughout the course of the afternoon until it dwindled into nothing. Apparently, Las Vegas didn’t care if it was my birthday.
By returning to the tables I’d tempted fate, and given Vegas the opportunity to settle the score. And in their twisted, addictive, and heart-pounding universe, the blackjack gods had made everything right again.
Lesson Learned: Don’t get greedy when gambling. Learn to walk away as a winner. (Or simply don’t gamble in the first place).
Nearly Crapping My Pants, Missing an International Flight, Sleeping in an Airport
This story and all its harrowing details are fresh in my memory. It was on this fateful day, June 5th, 2019, that I completely failed at traveling. As I look back on this disaster just a few months later, I reflect on it in utter shame and regret. Can I have a do-over, please?
My whole sad saga began on the morning of a flight I’d booked from Chengdu, China to San Francisco. From there, I would fly to Denver to visit my friends and family for a couple of months. I was intensely eager to get back home and see everyone.
That fateful morning, I awoke bright and early, gathered my backpacking gear and travel bag, and bid Keri adieu. I ordered a Didi (China’s equivalent to Uber) and walked out the door towards the front gates of my apartment complex. The Didi promptly canceled on me.
I spent the next 15 minutes scrambling about the sidewalks of early morning Chengdu, searching for any glimpse of WiFi to connect to my phone, which didn’t have data at the time. Finally, I found a weak connection and called a new Didi. I began to get quite nervous, as I hadn’t given myself much time for delays.
A visibly exhausted driver picked me up, sighed deeply, and pulled into a thick swarm of bumper-to-bumper rush hour traffic. I grimaced in uncertainty as I silently tried to reassure myself. You’ll be fine, Noel. Traffic will clear up. You won’t miss your flight. Don’t panic.
In addition to stressing about my timeframe, I desperately needed to go to the bathroom, in more ways than one. My bladder was slowly expanding and my guts began to twist and turn as they growled and I squirmed in my seat. Life was becoming more and more unbearable by the second.
It was at that moment when I started to panic.
I might crap my pants, piss myself, and miss my international flight – all within the same hour. Dear God, please no.
Thankfully, I didn’t end up soiling myself in the backseat of that taxi, but I came about as close as humanly possible for an hour straight.
Once my Didi driver finally arrived at the airport, I scrambled to the check-in counter, with only 58 minutes before my flight was set to depart. A sign sat in front of the counter to inform me that check-in had closed just two minutes prior. For a pathetic moment, I attempted to find a customer service agent that could help, but I quickly scampered to the bathroom after minimal effort.
The sweet joyous relief from my bathroom trip quickly faded as the realization sunk in that I’d most likely missed my flight. I went back to the check-in counter and couldn’t find anyone to help. My flight was already boarding and I hadn’t even gone through security. I was completely screwed.
As a result, my entire round-trip ticket to the U.S. was canceled, and I wouldn’t be receiving a refund. I threw my head in my hands and wallowed in self-pity. I was so incredibly upset with myself.
I eventually booked a new and very expensive flight back to the U.S. which was set to take off later that evening. It got delayed multiple times over a six-hour period until it was finally canceled at 4:00 a.m. The airline then drove me to a hotel, where I showered and slept for 20 minutes before they started banging on my door and hurried me back to the airport in a haze of confusion.
Embarrassed and demoralized, I eventually arrived back in Colorado a full 48 hours later than planned. I had forfeited a substantial amount of money booking my new trip back home and was running on very little sleep. I was a complete emotional disaster.
Lesson Learned: Give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport.
When Traveling Sucks, You Grow
Travel is an unpredictable beast
It’s not every day that I get the chance to bear my most embarrassing and disastrous travel moments to the world. The entire experience, the sharing of these stories, was a bit cathartic and quite fun. I hope you enjoyed yourself as well.
Keep in mind that I have plenty more stories just as miserable and humiliating as the ones you’ve just read, but I’m going to spare you the details. Some of my stories are best left untold, jammed deep down into the recesses of my memory.
I’m well aware that my future travels will bring about even more of these ill-fated and cringeworthy adventures. I can’t say that I’m looking forward to them per se, but I’m ready. I’m waiting for them.
Oddly, I hold these disastrous travel stories closer than most of the happy and cheerful memories I’ve made along the way. These tales — the ones brimming with failure and misadventure — remind me that the world owes me no magical moments or storybook endings. Life on the road is chaotic, cruel, and comical at times, so I’d best find some lessons to take with me along the way.
Traveling sucks sometimes, but I just can’t seem to get enough of it.
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What are some of your very worst travel stories? Have you had any similar bad travel experiences to me? Let me know by leaving feedback in the comments below!
After my feel good top ten travel moments of 2013 post and my ten amazing experiences while travelling the world, I thought I would head over to the dark side of travel for this Flashback Friday and go through some of my worst travel experiences.
Travel is not always fun, in fact sometimes it’s bloody horrible. It’s easy to focus on the good because, thankfully, mostly travel is awesome. There are some experiences I never want to live again though. My tag line for this site states that I will share the good, the bad and the ugly of travel – here is the ugly! Here are my top ten worst travel experiences in chronological order…
- 1 1. Fainting on my flight to Europe on my second international trip
- 2 2. Getting gassed in Quito, Ecuador
- 3 3. Being sexually assaulted in Turkey
- 4 4. Visiting the Egyptian Pyramids
- 5 5. Mexico/US border dramas
- 6 6. My travelling companion having a sudden seizure on a Grand Canyon tour.
- 7 7. Nearly being robbed in Sofia
- 8 8. Being in Bangkok during a Thai military coup
- 9 9. Being kicked off a chicken bus in Guatemala
- 10 10. KL accommodation mix up
1. Fainting on my flight to Europe on my second international trip
I have posted about this one before, so you can read the whole story. Basically, I started to feel sick just before I flew to Europe and became very sick on my third and final flight from Singapore to London. I actually ended up fainting!
The crew were horrible to me. I was told I was lucky to be given water and that it was my own fault for drinking too much – even though I hadn’t had any alcohol. I was also criticised for travelling alone. On arrival at Heathrow airport, I was actually taken off the plane in a wheel chair by paramedics!
It was all very dramatic and not a recommended way to start a holiday, particularly my first backpacking trip alone at 21.
2. Getting gassed in Quito, Ecuador
I have no idea exactly what happened, but it was not good!
In bad travel experience #2, we were walking around Quito, checking out a market when suddenly we were coughing. Everyone around us was coughing too and starting to pass out on the ground!
We thankfully reacted quickly and started running as fast as we could. Once we left the area, we were ok and stopped coughing.
3. Being sexually assaulted in Turkey
I loved Turkey, but I struggled being a solo female traveller in Turkey.
Men were constantly trying to pick me up. I covered up – despite being very hot, I wore ankle length skirts or trousers, and t shirts that covered me up. I wore the fake wedding band, did everything I could basically, but it was relentless. I would end up back at my room upset as I felt I had to start being very rude to everyone who tried to talk to me, as no matter how innocent their conversation started, it always lead to them asking me to come to their home. I do not recommend young females travel to Turkey alone – the only place I have been where I would say that.
Anyway, on my final day in Istanbul, I went for a long walk to an airline office. It was all on main busy roads, and I would have thought I was perfectly safe. On the way back, I soon realised that someone was following me. I dodged around and thought I had lost him. Then, when I was walking behind a bus that was parked at the side of the road – blocking the cars going past from seeing me, he appeared out of nowhere and grabbed me around my waist and between my legs, rubbing my girl bits.
I screamed and yelled as loud as I could, and he thankfully jumped back and started screaming at me. He actually looked shocked. Do some men really think women want to be treated this way? I ran onto the road and when I reached the median strip, I broke down on the ground and cried for quite awhile in the middle of a main road.
It was lucky I was flying out that night anyway, as I couldn’t stay in Turkey a second longer after that. The whole incident still makes me want to cry today. I have rarely told anyone this story, as I hate thinking about it. It is without a doubt my worst travel experience.
4. Visiting the Egyptian Pyramids
My Flashback Friday post on why I hated my visit to the Egyptian Pyramids is actually one of my most popular posts. Basically, there were so many touts hassling us in Egypt and at the Giza Pyramids, that it was impossible to enjoy them. My whole three days in Egypt were horrible and this is definitely one of my worst travel experiences.
5. Mexico/US border dramas
I had some dramas crossing from Mexico to the US by land in 2006. It started when the Mexican Army tried to take us away from a bus we were travelling in, saying that we had to leave the country immediately. It didn’t improve from there!
We made our way immediately to a US border crossing, only to have them not allow us to get an exit stamp from Mexico, not believe us that Australians don’t need a visa and to give us the third degree.
It was all made worse by the fact that we had to travel back over the next day to get our Mexican exit stamp and repeat the whole drama again.
This is just a summary. It was a stressful 24 hours and a bad travel experience that I never wish to repeat. You can read the whole drama in the links above!
6. My travelling companion having a sudden seizure on a Grand Canyon tour.
I was riding along on a bus, when bam, my then boyfriend had a seizure. He had never had one before, and I had never seen one before. It was very scary.
The tour guide rung 911 and soon there were paramedics and police there. We ended up spending a night in hospital and changing our plans to remain in the US while he had tests. We had 7 months of our trip still to go and we nearly had to cancel it all. Thankfully, he ended up being ok and we continued our trip. It was a horrible couple of days though.
7. Nearly being robbed in Sofia
I was walking along the main road in Sofia when I heard a zipper sound… I started to turn around and there was someone’s hand in my backpack!!
I looked around and I realised I had been surrounded by young women, and my travelling companion was a few steps ahead of me. I screamed at the girl, and she pulled her hand out. The group then encircled her and they slowly walked away, while I screamed out to my friend and at the girls.
I tried to check if they had taken anything while my friend tried to get to the girl who had had her hand in the bag to see if she had something. My bag was full and it was hard to tell. My friend couldn’t get to the girl thanks to the circle surrounding her. He told me later that one of them had stood in front of him, so he had to walk around her and that is how they separated us.
While this was going on, an old local woman was screaming at us in Bulgarian. It seemed like she was telling us to leave them alone. Everyone else just watched or walked on. I’m not sure what was worse, someone trying to rob me or all the people that were complicit in it. It seemed like the old woman was part of it too. I would have thought it someone tried to rob you, they would at least run off! Even if she had taken something valuable, I’m not sure I would have been able to get it back.
Luckily the zips on my bag were loud and not that easy to open so I had been on to her straight away. My bag had also just been stuffed full with bakery products on top, so she hadn’t been able to get to my wallet at the bottom. When we got back to our hostel, we saw a sign on the wall that said to be weary of groups of well dressed, young women and described exactly what had happened to us!
We had loved our time in Bulgaria, so it was a shame it had to end on such a sour note with one of my worst travel experiences. In saying that, I think things like this from time to time can be good reminders to be on our guard. I have always been aware since then to not let people get in between me and other people I am travelling with like that again.
8. Being in Bangkok during a Thai military coup
Waking up in the morning to hear the news that the country I was in had just had a military coup is a very strange experience. It is hard not to think of violence when hearing the words “military coup”, and it was quite scary. It turned out to not be that big a deal, but we did not know that at the time. In fact, we knew very little as all the news stations were turned off. Many people have told me they are jealous that I was there for such a big occasion, but I wonder if they would have been if it had turned out to not be peaceful. It was definitely a bad travel experience.
9. Being kicked off a chicken bus in Guatemala
I had loved loved loved Guatemala on my numerous trips there until our last one.
It felt like everyone was trying to rip us off constantly and it was very trying. The final straw was the last day we were in the country on our way to the Mexico border. Yet again, the chicken bus guy tried to overcharge us and yet again we had to argue to try to pay the right fare. In the end, he refused to lower the price and we refused to pay, so they stopped the bus until we hopped off! It was all quite dramatic and a little bit upsetting that no one stood up for us.
We ended up getting on the next bus that came through and having to pay the fare again. Needless to say, we were happy when we made it into Mexico!
10. KL accommodation mix up
This was the most recent bad travel experience. Some of you will remember that we flew Bangkok – KL – Manila last year and I accidentally booked our night round KL airport for the wrong night – so we turned up and not only did we not have a room but the hotel was fully booked and we had a hard time finding somewhere else that wasn’t booked.
This may not seem like a huge deal but after a long day with a baby and a two year old, driving round in a taxi in the dark to yet another hotel that was full was hugely stressful. It was not one of my finest moments as a travel planner and not one I am likely to forget any time soon. I check any booking x 1000 now (compared to the x 100 I did before this happened!). It was right up there with the other silly mistake I have made – when I booked two seats on a pricey plane trip from French Guiana to Brazil – both in my name instead of one in J’s name!
There you have it – my top ten worst travel experiences. They were all bad and a couple were downright terrifying, but really, given just how much I have travelled, there is really not that much that has gone terribly wrong. I have done a fair bit of travel as a solo young female too. Perhaps something to consider if you are someone who is a bit scared to get out there and see the world 🙂
You can also read some other travel bloggers worst travel experiences.
What was your worst travel experience?