A spirited 1950s travelogue that takes the reader around the world during a time when two independent young women travelling alone was considered almost revolutionary.
Renate Belczyk was born in Dresden, Germany, in 1932. When she was three years old her family moved to Berlin, where they settled into a small apartment building on the outskirts of the city. It was in this building that she met another adventurous girl, Sigrid, with whom she would travel around the world as young women after the Second World War.
Having spent most of their childhood and teenage years climbing trees, swimming, cycling, hiking, and adventuring around Germany the two young women attended a talk by the German writer Heinrich Böll. During his presentation the renowned author suggested to the crowd that they all travel to different countries and make friends with the locals whenever they could, as this would help prevent another war. Renate and Sigrid took this advice to heart, and from that point their adventures together took flight.
Starting in 1955 and travelling for three years to England, France, Spain, Portugal, Mexico, Canada, Japan, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Egypt, Turkey, Macedonia, and Greece, their adventures together culminated with their joint return to Germany in 1958. In 1959 Renate returned to the Canadian Rockies to work in the backcountry, and in 1960 she married mountaineer Felix Belczyk and settled in Castlegar, BC, where they raised three children.
Our Trip Around the World is an endearing snapshot of the postwar era when adventure travel – mountaineering, hiking, hitchhiking, and cycling – was enticing those with adventurous spirits to experience the world like never before.