Live to travel – the start of an adventure to the Arctic Circle

Train from Almaty, Kazakstan to Moscow, Russia

Reflecting on the past months Trans-Siberian, Trans-Mongolian, Trans-Kazakhstan train trip I realized that it was only the first leg of an epic adventure.

My Trans-Siberian adventure started in Beijing with two good friends and a preliminary plan to go by land all the way to St. Petersburg. Not only, that but we decided that Kazakhstan was going to be an important detour along the way. On April 30th the adventure came to an end as we arrived in St. Petersburg.

The last leg of the trip was a special adventure as we embarked on a four day Trans-Kazakhstan train ride from the old Kazak capital of Almaty to Moscow. As usual the ride was filled with adventure but we also found certain homeliness with the mother like women who shared our section of the third class train. Lovingly, they covered us with blankets during the mornings when the three of us were shivering with only a thin bed sheet covering us.

Me and Stevo posing with our host moms on the train from Almaty, Kazakhstan to Moscow, Russia

The mishaps started when a drunken Russian man replaced them and tried to climb into bed with my friend Stevo then proceeded to fight him. Finally, there were the two sisters who worked on our train car cleaning and making sure everything was in order. They were extremely friendly and shared their knowledge of Kazakhstan with us while ridding our area of people who tried to steal our seats.

Yes, the train was an adventure, but one that was soon to end. Our final leg by train took us overnight to St. Petersburg. This was the most uneventful trip of our journey, and since we had spent the previous night out our group of four fell instantly asleep until our early morning arrival. It seemed surreal when it was all over, our several thousand mile train trip spanning four countries, a continent and close to a third of the world.

The train from Almaty, Kazakhstan to Moscow, Russia

For most people St. Petersburg would be the end of the road, but for my friends and I it was the end of one adventure and the beginning of another. This is because during our hours on the train we came up with a plan to go all the way to the arctic circle. Why not, we were already on our way to Finland and what would another few hours be to a group who had just spent the better part of a month travelling across Russia by train.

So here I am, in a bright red Renault-Palveleut rental car, cruising at a comfy 115km per hour with two good friends on the way to the Arctic Circle, a planned stop off at a cottage in Roveniemi, Lapland, the home of Santa Clause, on the next leg of our epic trip.

The “red dragon” our transportation to the arctic circle

As the lakes passed us by and the landscape around us became snowier I realized how lucky I am to be able to have these experiences. It’s not often you can meet fellow travelers to spend months on the road visiting foreign lands, experiencing foreign cultures and learning about the world. But as we continued driving I realized that anyone can do this because these experiences are what travelling is all about.

I’ve wanted to travel the world and make a living while doing it for years and so I began with teaching abroad. After several years of working in education both in Canada and overseas I decided that I wanted to fulfill my dreams of travelling more fully and so I left it all behind and started a new chapter of my life. On the way of what was originally to be a three month trip I met my friend Johnny from onestep4ward who encouraged me to follow my dreams of living to travel by starting a travel blog.

Now I’m on my way to the Arctic circle with few plans to end the trip. Alongside me are Johnny and the Shameless Traveler Stevo, the three of us living our dreams of travelling and sharing our experiences with the world. If you’ve always wanted to travel but find yourself making excuse stop, book a flight, and try something new. But if you want to make it your life style start blogging, and like us you can turn travelling into a full time income.

Ian Yacobucci

Traveling the Trans-Siberian, mountaineering the Himalayas, or teaching in Tokyo, I'm always trying something new. As a someone who's worked, studied, and traveled to 40+ countries around the world, I'm here to share my experiences so you can do the same.

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