A man who journeyed to nine countries on four continents in less than a week has set a new Guinness World Record for the fastest time to visit the new Seven Wonders of the World, according to travel technology company Travelport.
British traveler, author and motivational speaker Jamie McDonald set the new record, by using only public transport to visit the new Seven Wonders of the World in six days, 16 hours and 14 minutes, according to the company, which planned the itinerary and said that it was confirmed by Guinness World Records.
McDonald, who’s known as “Adventureman,” equipped with just a backpack on his shoulders, “set off on the journey of a lifetime” to visit the Great Wall of China, the Taj Mahal, the ancient city of Petra, the Colosseum in Rome, Rio de Janeiro’s Christ the Redeemer, Machu Picchu and Chichén Itzá.
The “New Seven Wonders of the World” was a private initiative launched in 2000 by Bernard Weber to “encourage citizens around the world to select seven new wonders of the world by popular vote,” according to the World Heritage Convention. There is no link between sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List and Weber’s campaign. Since antiquity, lists declaring different “wonders of the world” have been compiled to highlight breathtaking sites.
A pizza in Rome was McDonald’s only chance to eat non-plane food while traveling. Overall, he took 13 flights, 16 taxi rides, nine buses, four trains, and one toboggan, covering a total of 22,856 miles.
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Travelport wanted to explore whether its “modern retail platform” could make “the world’s most complex trip simple.” Once the trip began, Travelport said Guinness World Records rules bar the company from assisting if any of McDonald’s connections were missed.
The achievement was more “remarkable” because he had been diagnosed as a child with a “rare” spinal condition that doctors thought would cause him to need a wheelchair for most of his adult life.
“Until the age of nine, Jamie was in and out of hospital with a rare spinal condition called syringomyelia, but with the help of doctors and nurses his symptoms began to ease,” Travelport’s statement said. The clock begins the moment the challenger leaves the first wonder site and it does not stop for any reason until the challenger sets foot in the final site.
To get the Guinness World Records to sign off on the trip, McDonald had to adhere to a number of other rules.
- Use only scheduled public transportation, with licensed taxi rides unable to exceed 31 miles per hour.
- keep a logbook with evidence that proves travel
- Obtain receipts and tickets everywhere available
- Use accurate professional GPS equipment
- Take videos and photos showing the applicant, the location and the date at each site visited
- Get a written or recorded statement from an official member of staff, local dignitary and/or police officer at each site.
Want to follow in Adventureman’s footsteps?
Travelbag, a travel agency partner of Travelport, has packages available to visit all seven wonders of the world starting at about $38,000.
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