From the Fens to the rest of the world - former Neale Wade student plans to write a travel book

Daniel Doughty with his map and cycle tool kit that he took on the 8000 mile cycle ride across Japan

Daniel Doughty with his map and cycle tool kit that he took on the 8000 mile cycle ride across Japan. Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

A March man, whose itchy feet have kept him travelling the world since leaving university nearly ten years ago, has set his sights on writing a book about his experiences.

Daniel Doughty that cycled around Asia.

Daniel Doughty that cycled around Asia. - Credit: Archant

Among his travels, former Neale Wade student Daniel Doughty, 31, has lived with a Japanese family while working on their farm, been involved in conservation projects in the Outer Hebrides and worked on a dairy farm in Australia.

His latest expedition saw him cycle more than 7,000 miles in eight months through every county - known as prefectures - in Japan. Sometimes camping, sometimes in hostels and at other times sofa surfing - a popular form of cheap accommodation in Japan similar to bed and breakfast.

A decade of travelling has resulted in tales of friendship, learning and insights into other cultures with the breathtaking repertoire of communities experienced proving a far cry from the Fens where he grew up.

Mr Doughty said: “I’ve made some of the best friends I’m perhaps ever likely to encounter, countless times I would be touched by the kindness of a people of whom I am barely able to communicate with, being the stranger at the dinner table was a frequent occurrence, but I was treated as if I were one of their own, like one of the family.”

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With everything he needed strapped to his bike he would often find himself pedalling in bizarre conditions of gale force winds, tropical storms, typhoons, snow and freezing conditions.

“At times a bullet to the shin would have seemed far more appetizing than cycling through the likes of the Japanese Alps,” he said.

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He saw communities torn apart by the tsunami and saw communities whose strength and spirit pulled them through to rebuild the carnage of their villages.

He plans to put his experiences into a book of blogs and photographs but in the meantime has temporarily landed back in March where he is working with his father, electrician Ray Doughty, of Highfield Road, March.

His mother Sally said: “he wont be here long. The travelling bug will hit him again and he will be off! He studied IT for three years and has a degree in geography but it goes to show that sometimes qualifications are not the be all and end all.”

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