Graham Hughes, a 33 year old adventurer, from Liverpool has created a new record in his name by becoming the first person in the world to visit all the existing 201 countries without using a plane. He traveled by buses, boats, taxis, trains and his own two feet and logged a total of 160,000 miles over 1,426 days. It was not luxury travel as he did it on a shoestring budget of barely $100 a week. There was a bit of a controversy initially as the judges from Guinness World Records rejected his application as he had crossed over to Russia wading through a river which made his trip illegal. However, he immediately took a bus to Poland and entered Russia officially again with a valid visa.
Hughes Proved that the Journey Could be Done on a Shoestring
He had embarked on his ambitious tour way back in 2009 on the 1st of January and completed it recently after crossing over to Juba, the capital of South Sudan which did not even exist when he set off on his journey. In an interview to Christian Science Monitor Graham said that he loves to travel but the motivation for taking up such a daunting task was to test if it could be done by one person on a shoestring. He also wanted to break the myth that the world is one big scary place. He wants to show the world that it is full of people who want to help you even if you are a stranger.
He Has Filmed the Epic Journey for a Documentary
The tour was truly adventurous. He spent four days ‘crossing open ocean in a leaky boat’ to reach Cape Verde, was jailed for a week in the Congo for being a ‘spy’, was arrested trying to ‘sneak into’ Russia and had to be ‘rescued from Muslim fundamentalists by a Filipino ladyboy called Jenn’. He also traveled to North Korea, Iraq and Afghanistan which are considered tough for tourists but he not face any difficulty. He had to break journey in the middle once when he lost his sister to cancer but he went back and continued from where he had left it. Hughes has also filmed the expedition for a documentary and raised money for charity WaterAid.