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Our Journey

We are currently in Auckland, New Zealand (Stop 12(e) below)
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Stop 12:  29 January until 26 April, 2023:  New Zealand

12(a) On 30 January we flew from Melbourne to Auckland, NZ.  We stayed with friends in Hamilton NZ (North Island) until 16 February.  On 16 February, we took the Northern Explorer scenic train from Hamilton to Wellington.

12(b) From February 1-23 and March 1-30 we've booked a place in central Wellington. 

12(c) We've booked a flight to Christchurch where we will stay in a hotel for 6 nights.  We'll take the TranzAlpine scenic train on a day trip across the NZ Alps to Greymouth and back on one day and visit in Christchurch the other days. On 1 March we will take the Coastal Pacific scenic train from Christchurch to Picton, then the ferry across the Cook Straits to Wellington.

12(d) We'll resume our time in Wellington until the end of the month.

12(e) On March 29 we travel to Auckland where we've booked an apartment in central Auckland.

Stop 13: 26 April to 30 June: Suva, Fiji

We've booked a place near the center of Suva from 26 April to 30 June.  We really liked the Pacific islands we visited on the cruise, but Suva was the only city large enough  to have a good variety of restaurants, a walkable CBD and public transit.  Our flat is two bedrooms and about a five minute walk to a beach used by locals.    

After Fiji: Not yet booked

We're thinking we might go to George Town, Panang, Malaysia for two months then three months in Japan.  We'll probably head back to home base in December for the 2023 holidays.

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Stop 11:  15 November, 2022 to 29 January, 2023:  Melbourne, VIC, Australia.

Early Tuesday morning we will took a train from Sydney to Melbourne, where we will live for 2 1/2 months.  Our apartment is in the near suburb Carlton, which is walking distance to the Central Business District, Victoria Market, and Flinders Street Station.  From the CBD, we can travel easily in the Melbourne area.  


Stop 10:  8 November to 15 November, 2022:  Sydney, NSW, Australia.

We arrived in Sydney, Australia on 7 November, 2022.  We officially disembarked the ship on 8 November, 2022 and checked into our apartment located in Leichhardt, an inner suburb known for its many restaurants and cafes.  We are staying here one week.

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Stop 9:  Pacific Cruise
On October 2, we embarked on a one-way repositioning cruise from Seattle to Sydney, Australia, on the Holland America ship Westerdam.  The stops are shown below, and the dates:

(Note: there were a few changes en route.  Below is the updated schedule)
Mon Oct 3 At Sea
Tue Oct 4 At Sea
Wed Oct 5 At Sea
Thu Oct 6 At Sea
Fri Oct 7 At Sea
Sat Oct 8 HONOLULU, HAWAII, US 8:00am 11:59pm
Mon Oct 10 NAWILIWILI, KAUAI, HAWAII, US 8:00am 5:00pm
Tue Oct 11 KONA, HAWAII, US 8:00am 5:00pm
Wed Oct 12 At Sea
Thu Oct 13 At Sea
Sun Oct 16 At Sea
Mon Oct 17 At Sea
Tue Oct 18 APIA, UPOLO, SAMOA 8:00am 5:00pm
Wed Oct 19 At Sea
Thu Oct 20 SUVA, VITI LEVU, FIJI ISLANDS 8:00am overnight
Fri Oct 21 SUVA, VITI LEVU, FIJI ISLANDS  leave 5:00pm
Sat Oct 22 DRAVUNI ISLAND, FIJI 8:00am 5:00pm
Sun Oct 23 LAUTOKA, FIJI 8:00am 5:00pm
Mon Oct 24 At Sea
Tue Oct 25 At Sea
Fri Oct 28 At Sea (Coral Sea)
Sat Oct 29 At Sea (Solomon Sea)
Sun Oct 30 ALOTAU, PAPUA NEW GUINEA 10:00am 8:00pm
Mon Oct 31 At Sea
NEW GUINEA 6:00am 5:00pm
Wed Nov 2 At Sea (Coral Sea)
Thu Nov 3 CAIRNS, AUSTRALIA 8:00am 5:00pm
Sat Nov 5 At Sea
Sun Nov 6 MORETON ISLAND, QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA (couldn't land due to weather - at sea)
Mon Nov 7 Sydney, Australia
Tue Nov 8 SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA 7:00am

We started our journey in January, 2022.  We traveled in Europe until May, then we were in the U.S. from June-September.  Below were our first 8 stops (January-September, 2022)

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Stop #1:  Lisboa, Portugal

Our first stop is Lisboa, Portugal (Lisbon).  We chose Lisbon because we had heard so many good things about it, but have never been.  This is a place many U.S. retirees visit and live.  We wanted to know what all the buzz was about!  We are not disappointed.  This is an 8-week visit.

Stop #2:  London, U.K.

Second stop is London, U.K.  We chose London because we have never been to the U.K, so London seems like a logical place to start.  We needed to spend about 6 weeks outside the Schengen Zone so that we could visit Helsinki for a month and not overstay our Schengen Zone 90/180 time frame. We figure London is so big there will be a lot of things to explore.  It is still a little cold, so we thought we could find a place to stay closer to our budget at this time.

Stop #3:  Paris, France

Third stop, Paris, France.  This is an unusual short stay.  We have family visiting Paris so we decided to stop and spend a few days with them.  We'll just be there five days.

Stop #4:  Helsinki, Finland  

Our fourth stop is Helsinki, Finland.  We chose Helsinki because we had an exchange student from there live with us for a year in 2003-2004 in Michigan.  We've wanted to visit her and meet her family and friends since she went back.  We'll be in Helsinki for the rest of May.

Stop #5:  Lansing, Michigan

Lansing is our domicile and where our daughter and her partner live.  We'll be visiting family and friends, exchanging items from our storage unit, and getting medical check-ups. Paul will get his motorcycle ready to ride to Alaska from Michigan, something he's wanted to do for a long time. Kim will visit family and friends, then fly to Louisville, Kentucky, then on to Seattle.

Stop #6: Prudhoe Bay, Alaska (Paul)  Louisville, Kentucky (Kim)

Paul will bike to Alaska via Wisconsin and Canada; Kim will travel to Louisville, Kentucky to meet up with family.  Then both will meet in Seattle.  Update: Paul had to have bike repairs in Calgary, twice.  Instead of driving to Alaska, he is now planning to drive back into the US, then West to Seattle.

Stop #7: Seattle, Washington

We'll be in Seattle for 8 weeks.  We've visited the Pacific Northwest and wanted to visit a little longer.  We booked a cruise to Japan but it got cancelled, so we're not yet sure where, or how, we'll go next.

Although Japan announced opening to tourists, it is still limited to a small number of tour groups, which is not something we want to do.  We'll make a decision in late summer/early fall about where we are going next.

Stop #8: Wisconsin Rapids, WI

Our Seattle trip was cut short when Paul's dad became ill.  Paul flew to Wisconsin Rapids, and a week later, I flew out.  Sadly, Paul's dad passed away on August 11, 2022.  I flew back to Seattle, collected all our stuff, then took the train from Seattle to Wisconsin Rapids.  We'll stay here as long as it takes to organize his things, settle his affairs, and sell the house.  

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