Who says an incredible gap year has to last a year? Not us, that’s for sure! You can squeeze so much into 60 days it’s (almost) unreal.
To prove it, I’ve enlisted the help of 5 well travelled STA Travel staffers, and we’ve each described our own version of the perfect 60 day gap year, or ‘snap year’ if you will. Now remember; this may be our own ideas of what constitutes a perfect trip, but the glory of a gap year, is that it can include pretty much, anything you like.
So, maybe you like one of our ideas, or maybe you like a little bit of a few of them, or maybe you think none of them are for you and you have your own, much better trip, already planned in your head.
Either way have a read and let us know what you think in the comments box below. In fact, leave your own version of the perfect 60 day gap year – maybe you’ll inspire someone…
Where Would Our STA Travel Staffers Go On Their Own 60 Day Gap Year?
Emma – STA Travel Blogger
If I had 60 days to play with, I’d head Down Under to the classic Gap Year destination, Australia. I’ve never been to Oz and have always, always wanted to go. It’s not the cheapest of destinations, so I’d take 6 weeks exploring the east coast before spending a couple of weeks relaxing on the islands of the South Pacific. Australia isn’t the cheapest of destinations, so I reckon 6 weeks is the perfect amount of time to stay without blowing my budget.
I’d grab a flight to Adelaide, drive the Great Ocean Road across to Melbourne, grab an internal flight to Sydney then hire a campervan and work my way up to Cairns. I got my PADI Open Water license in Thailand a couple of years ago, so I’d dust that off and explore the underwater depths of the Great Barrier Reef, something I’ve wanted to do ever since I learned to dive. I’d round off my mini Gap Year with a couple of weeks exploring the South Pacific islands and relaxing on Fiji – I’m gonna need a holiday after all that Aussie adventuring, right?
How does some quality Great Barrier Reef time sound?
Saxon – Marketing Exec and Travel Expert
My 60 day adventure would have to be a trip of epic proportions right across Europe and Asia, from London right through to the bright lights of Tokyo – all without getting on a single plane.
So, to start I’d take the Eurostar to Paris and spend a few days there, then I’d head over to Estonia on Interrail making sure I spent a good 10 days there, travelling around, soaking up the culture and drinking loads of Eastern European beer! Then I’d catch the bus to St Petersburg in Russia and spend a night roaming the city.
From there, I’d jump aboard the Vodkatrain and spend the next 3 weeks cruising across town and country, on my way through Russia and Mongolia until I reached China. After departing the Vodkatrain in Beijing I’d take another train down to Shanghai, and spend some time there before jumping on a ferry over to Osaka in Japan and spending my last 2 weeks exploring the amazing country than is Japan.
Maybe exploring the bright lights of Tokyo is more your thing? Image courtesy of JNTO & Y Shimizu - Shinjuku, Tokyo
Ant – STA Travel Blog Editor
Not one to pamper a hangover on white sand beaches, I’d head for the highest culture in the world, and journey through the Himalaya. I’d begin by flying into Beijing, explore the Forbidden City and the neighbouring highlights of Xi’an, before travelling southwest, to the lush teascapes of Yunnan. Once satisfied, I’d drift into Sichuan province for some spicy eats, then head west, to the mystical realms of Tibet. After a week in Lhasa, dipping in and out of monasteries, I’d travel overland to the mighty ridges of the Himalaya, and the incredible Mount Everest Base Camp, where I’d sleep beneath the stars in a cosy tent.
Next up I’d trickle south into Nepal, exploring the fascinating history of Kathmandu, and learning from the generous nature of the Nepalese people. I’d mix in some adventures on the rafting rivers around Pokhara, perhaps hurl myself off a cliff to soar with the hawks, before looping south to Buddha’s birthplace in Lumbini — perhaps stopping a while in the Chitwan National Park to search for tigers and rhino. Finally, I’d cross the border into North India, to take on a string of masterful highlights, including Agra’s Taj Mahal, the Golden Palace in Amritsar and the unforgettable ghats of Varanasi. That would make an epic snap year: filled with culture, delicious food, and amazing people.
The sublime Taj Mahal is potentially one of the most awesome things you will ever see
Alison – Product Exec and Travel Expert
For me, travel is about seeing amazing places and doing what you love best (not ticking off a list of other people’s “must sees”) so if I had 60 days I’d spend it relaxing on the world’s best beaches and partying in the best cities. The natural place to start this trip then would be the ultimate of all party hot spots (just ask Harry!) Las Vegas. Pool parties in sunshine by day and clubs and casinos all night.
Then after a little road trip to LA via the beaches of the beautiful West Coast I’d fly down to Brazil to take in the samba capitals of the world Salvador and Rio – travelling down between the two stopping off in the hottest surf spots (Itacare, Trancoso, Caraiva) and arguably the world’s most beautiful beach Lopes Mendes on the idyllic Isla Grande. After 3 weeks of Caipirinhas and Capoeira it would be time to fly across the pacific to the stunning Cape Town – home to table mountain and the world’s best seafood.
After 2 weeks road tripping along the stunning coastline of the garden route, this would leave a week at the end for absolute R&R on Zanzibar before jetting back tanned, refreshed and with a thousand stories to tell.
Lisa – STA Travel Blogger
I’d head to Southeast Asia starting with Thailand, then Laos, Vietnam and finally Cambodia.
First stop would definitely have to be Bangkok for a couple of nights to explore the floating markets and the famous traveler hub of Koh San Road. Then I’d take the over night train southwards and spend 2 weeks hoping between the beautiful beaches of the south, stopping in Koh Phangan for a full moon party obvs! From there it’s up to Chiang Mai for a trek through the jungle and a weeks volunteering at their awesome Elephant sanctuary then it’d be on to the character filled town of Pai for a couple more days.
Then, after I’d waved farewell to Thailand, I’d head for some tubing fun in the legendary traveller, filled town of Vang Vieng, Laos before a drive north around the winding, mountain roads towards Luang Prabang to shop at one of the best street markets in Southeast Asia. From here, I’d skip over to Vietnam for a couple of weeks and start my Vietnamese adventure in the city of Hanoi and a couple of days on a boat trip around the impossibly beautiful, Halong Bay.
The lantern lit streets of Hoi An are absolutely unmissble (as is their specialty dish of Cao Lau noodles) so id spend a couple of days here filling my belly before, shooting down to the biggest party town in Vietnam, Nha Trang. From here it would be a quick stop in Ho Chi Minh and then a hop over the border into Cambodia. I’d easily spend 2 weeks here, soaking up bustling atmosphere of Phnom Phen and the sun soaked beaches of Sihanoukville before my last stop exploring the amazing culture and history of every inch of Siem Reap and the stunning Angkor Wat.
Mingle with the locals in Vietnam