Celiacs have no limits

Celiac Globetrotter got the first round the world trip and continues traveling

 

From May 2013 to March 2015 I travelled non-stop to complete the first gluten free round the world trip. I was on the road for 112.000 kilometers crossing 19 countries in 656 days of gluten free travel.

Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Philippines, New Zealand, Australia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina and Uruguay. I might be the first celiac on a round the world trip, so if I did it, hopefully I won’t be the last one. I have asked for 1.956 gluten free meals in countries where there’s no shared language, making the path wider for the upcoming celiac travelers.

When I was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2008 it was both the best and worst thing in my life. At the beginning, I thought I would be stuck in my country forever, since the first months were hard when the disease wasn’t that known in Spain, and I was working in a good job while many people in my country were unemployed.

But just five years later, my dream came true. I broke the established system, the gluten chains and jumped to the world. My partner, Mar, had the same dream about travel the world with no limits. We found a cheap flight to Singapore and it was then or never.

chiang.rai

I have been in places where it was impossible to order gluten free meals and even less likely to find gluten free stuff in the groceries. We were 10 months in Asia, where no one knew what gluten is and they don’t speak enough English to ask for special orders or change ingredients in my meals. It had no sense to explain the cross-contamination so I developed a set of rules to follow, especially when it comes to how the meals are being prepared. I didn’t hesitate to go into the kitchen and show what I can and cannot eat.

I could write many posts about how I avoid gluten in every situation and country, to sum up; I choose the simplest recipes, have no expectations and think I am enjoying everything in the world, but the food. As we travel on a budget, local cuisine is a must and a complication. However, I never go hungry, since fats, carbs, proteins, fruits and vegs are easy to find anywhere.

Completed the first round the world, we stopped in Spain for 5 weeks and were back to the road in April 2015. This time we’ve started where we left, in Peru. Then, continued to the South, crossing the Chilean and Argentinean border a few times to get Ushuaia (the southernmost city in the world) by January 2016. Meanwhile we’re visiting the most important spots in both countries, and slow traveling while the winter passes to travel the Patagonia.

Our trip schedule has no end. After Chile and Argentina we’ll spend some months in Brazil, will visit the Guianas, and a long time in Central America and United States. Let’s not get ahead of events; it will be in 2016-2017. 

saigon

Follow Juan Ayala's gluten free trip

Facebook: fb.com/unceliacoporelmundo

Twitter: @celiacomundo

Web: celiacglobetrotter.com (soon in English)

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