Senior Couple Who Backpacked To 40 Countries Reveals How It Helped Them Fall In Love Again

Before setting off on their travels, Zhang did a crash course in English while his wife studied history and geography.

Cover image via 花甲背包客/Weibo

A couple over the age of 60 lived the dream after retirement when they decided to travel around the world together for over three years

According to China Press, 71-year-old Zhang Guangzhu and 68-year-old Wang Zhongjin began travelling in 2008, before finally returning to China in 2011 after visiting over 40 countries.

Zhang recalled that the idea of travelling across the world came to him when he encountered a foreign tourist in Yunnan

He was amazed that a foreigner who could not speak Mandarin at all was willing to go to a remote and unfamiliar place alone.

That was when it hit him: why not he and his wife?

So he went home, told her the idea, and they took out a world map to begin preparing their ultimate adventure together.

Before setting off on their travels, Zhang said he did a crash course in English while his wife concentrated on history and geography

He spent more than half a day every day reading English conversation books to learn the language.

Their first trip abroad was to Europe, where they spent three months of 2008 travelling all over the continent.

However, as soon as they returned home, they knew they were bitten by the travel bug and longed to travel overseas again.

So, in 2009, the two globetrotters set off, this time budget travelling all over the US and Canada.

The couple never travelled with tour groups, and instead chose to carry 65-litre backpacks, carrying only clothes and travel books

Furthermore, although their English was only that of Standard Two students in primary school, Sin Chew Daily reported that this did not affect their determination to explore the world.

In three years, this ordinary couple from Beijing toured dozens of countries in Europe, North America, South America, and many other countries on their own

According to RedChili21, the countries they have been to are:
- 2008: Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Czech Republic, and 16 other European countries;
- 2009: United States, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Nepal, and India;
- 2010: Russia; and
- 2011: 14 countries in South America, including Argentina, Brazil, Peru, as well as New Zealand, and Australia.

They said travelling together has made them fall in love again and strengthened their relationship

While they have currently stopped travelling abroad, they continue to travel within China and often share their experiences on Weibo, under the name "The Happy Backpackers", much to the envy of many netizens.

Every time they talk about their experiences of traveling around the world, it is said that Zhang and Wang would always look happy and consider themselves blessed.

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