I will be going on a rtw trip starting in the beginning october for about a year and I'm not sure whether to go east to west or west into east when starting in Paris for optimal climate (I prefer warm weather).

My destinations are very flexible but some of the spots I do not want to miss are: Ethiopia, Iran, Vietnam, Thailand, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, USA.

Some destinations that are optional are Papua-New-Guinea, India, Kyrgyzstan, South Korea)

Starting in October I was gonna go east from paris, maybe Eastern Europe, down to Turkey, down to Ethiopia, and then Oman, Iran, and off to South East Asia where I would be in around February (maybe meet some friends in Thailand and Indonesia)… after a few months in SE asia, head to to South America and go up north.

Is this direction logical in terms of climate, or is the opposite (starting in Latin America first) a better idea?

  • 1
    Isn't "climate" more northern vs southern hemisphere, rather than east-west vs west-east?
    – CGCampbell
    Aug 20, 2015 at 18:52

3 Answers 3


If you want to experience perpetual summer, starting in Paris in October and then going to eastern Europe is not the best of ideas. And, depending on where in Turkey you plan to go, winters can get quite cold.

Parts of Ethiopia have perpetual cold nights, any time of the year.

Northern Iran can be very cold in winter.

Furthermore, based on your description, you seem to plan on getting to South America in the middle of the year, which is the southern hemisphere's winter. South American winter ain't comparable to, say, central Asia's, but particularly the south (of South America) can get very cold. And plenty of the beach resorts on the continent's west coast won't be open for swimming.

If, on the other hand, your only option is to go to the US from Paris, you'd head into North American winter, which can also be pretty harsh.

So, if you are flexible in your journey, but not in your dates, and assuming you will be traveling for about a year, I'd say your best bet would be something like...

Paris - South America - North America (at the start of spring) - Asia - Middle East (at the start of autumn) - Europe.


Considering your trip will span both hemispheres, there isn't a particularly wrong way to do it since it will always be winter/almost winter somewhere. I think what you have planned seems pretty good weather wise. Especially as someone from the US, you really don't want to be here in Winter since most major cities will get fairly cold and/or see snow. The same is true of Europe, so better to do it when you start out than to do it over a winter. SE Asia, India, and other countries near the equator stay relatively warm all-year round. SE Asia near the Indian Ocean in particular is always fairly nice, though you do have to be careful not to go in the rainy season.


Climate in Colombia is almost entirely a function of altitude, not time of year. Cartagena is always hot and humid. Bogotá is always cool.

The one big exception is hurricane season if you are visiting the Caribbean coast (Cartagena, Barranquilla, Santa Marta), where it will be hot and humid with occasional very heavy rain when a hurricane passes by. Hurricanes don't usually hit the coast, but even one a couple of hundred miles north will bring a downpour to the area.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .