Around the World via All Capital Cities in a DC-6

Welcome everyone to my latest round the world adventure on MSFS 2020!

Introduction

In this thread, I will chronical my adventures as I attempt to fly to every capital city in the world in as efficient a way as possible. In this post you’ll find details of how I’m going about it, the route I’m taking and how I’ve worked that out. In the posts that follow, I’ll be recording my adventures - mostly so I can capture it all, but also so that you can follow along and see the sights as I find them.

Any and all comments are, of course welcome, and I hope you enjoy the journey.

Background

Not long ago, I completed my first round the world trip in MSFS - a journey I started just a couple of days after MSFS was launched in August 2020. This was a long, winding and somewhat random wander around the world, sightseeing as I went. I started out from my home town of Edinburgh and pretty much headed wherever I fancied. I did this in the TBM 930 (maybe a lucky choice as it seems to be one of the better default aircraft). I should say that I started out a total noobie at flight simming, and by the time I finished, nearly a year later, I’ve learned a LOT about flight simming and the TBM - a plane I now know very well indeed.

If you want to read more about that journey, I captured it all here (all 5,014 screenshots too…)

While I was trundling along in the cruise on the many flights on that trip, I started to think about what would be next. That’s when I started to look at Neofly and other similar “mission based” software to go with MSFS. I think I might turn to these later, but for now, they didn’t really inspire me much - nothing against any of those by the way.

One of the things I found both good and bad about they way I was going about the trip was that each leg I had to think about where to go and which direction to fly. On the one hand, quite liberating, on the other I found it difficult to find the right challenge sometimes. So I thought about what were the options to do somethign where the route is more defined.

That’s where the idea of capital cities occurred to me. So I hatched a bit of a plan and an intellectual challenge!

The challenge

Well, my challenge was to fly around the world, going directly from capital city to capital city. But, to make it more interesting and challenging, I decided that I would try to find the most efficient route. So that became something of a mission in itself - how to find the capitals, how to work out the shortest route, just how far is it etc.

So the challenge (rules of sorts) is as follows:

  • Visit all capital cities in the world once - returning to the original starting city
  • Visit means land at the main airport serving each capital city
  • Routes must be direct - no stop overs
  • Do it in the shortest “great circle” distance - great circle, because SIDs, STARs etc will mean each flight won’t be exactly the same as the GC distance, but I needed a consistent measurement between capitals to work out the shortest route

So how did I go about finding the route…

Finding the route

First off, credit to Great Circle Mapper http://www.gcmap.com/ This great website enables you to find the shortest distance between any two airports, which is the great circle distance, and - even more helpfully, has all the latitude/longitude for every airport in an easily accessible format.

The short version:
I found all the capital airports, put them into Great Circle Mapper, copied all the latitude/longitude information into Excel - did some serious number crunching - and out popped the shortest route (that I can readily find).

The long version:

This problem is a large version of the “Travelling Salesman Problem”. There are 227 capital cities that I’m visiting, so this is akin to a travelling salesman who needs to visit 227 cities and wants to do this in the shortest distance possible. This sort of thing can be solved by free online tools…if there are less than 20 “nodes” or cities. Excel can do it to for about 15 or 20 nodes. Even professional software won’t do 227 nodes - that’s super computer territory.

However, there are ways to tackle this computationally. The way I came up with is not perfect, but has provided a good answer, but it won’t be the shortest. However, i was starting to find very quickly diminishing returns the more I ran the processes on the data, which makes me think I;m getting to a practically acceptable answer.

Here’s the approach:

  1. Get the list of capitals - I got this online, and landed on a list of 227 capital cities

  2. Using ICAO code look ups, I found all the ICAO codes for airports that serve those capital cities

  3. I plugged all those capitals into Great Circle Mapper and copied all the longitude and latitude information for each capital city airport into Excel

  4. I then got hold of the formula to calculate the great circle distance between any two lat/long coordinates (Calculate distance and bearing between two Latitude/Longitude points using haversine formula in JavaScript)

  5. I used that formula in Excel to create a matrix calculating the distance between every airport and every other airport on this list. This formed the raw data for what I needed. For every capital city airport, I now know how far away every other capital city airport is

  6. The easiest and simplest starting “solution” for the Travelling Salesman Problem is very simple. Pick a starting airport, and go from there to the nearest airport. From there go to the nearest airport…and so on until the list runs out and then you return to the starting airport

  7. If you think about it, this will never be a perfect answer - firstly because it could be shorter overall to go to a further away airport and then to the others that were closer because the airports are not in a straight line - they obviously zig zag around. Secondly, you need to think about the return leg at the end - it seems highly improbable that you’ll end up at an airport second to last that will be close to the starting point. Also having thought about it, I realised that the starting airport will make a difference. The closest airport might change depending on where you’ve come from and whether you’ve already been to that closest airport. So the order of the trip and the starting point will change the outcome

  8. So, using some VBA in Excel, I got Excel to come up with the length of the trip based on starting at all 227 airports, and picking the next airport as the closest one not yet visited. This gave a fairly wide range of outcomes, and a basis for further refinement

  9. The next step was to see what happens if I swapped the order of pairs of airports at each stage - would that make the journey shorter? Start with a route that goes A>B>C on the basis that B is closest to A, C closest to B. What happens if, instead of going A>B>C, I swap B and C around, so we go A>C>B? perhaps the distance A>C>B is less than A>B>C?

  10. So I ran a process of swapping every pair - but not just adjacent pairs. I systematically swapped every airport with every other airport to see what that would do to all the combinations - so we tray ABCD then ADCB etc.

  11. That reduced the distance a fair bit - maybe about 10% shorter

  12. I then took this a step further and tested swapping groups of 3 airports around. This took a LONG time in Excel - hundreds of thousands of permutations, and all x 227 as we need to test it with every capital as the starting point. By the time this finished (took about 3 days continuous running in Excel), I’d shaved a further 1% or so off the distance

Going further and swapping 4 cities at a time would be exponentially longer…time to take this as the answer and move on!

So I have my route. 227 cities, 94,868Nm, starting and finishing in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

The Route

ICAO codes

UTDD-UTTT-UCFM-UACC-UTAA-OIII-UBBB-UGTB-UDYZ-ORBI-OKBK-OBBI-OOMS-OMAA-OTHH-OERK-OJAI-LLJR-OSDI-OLBA-LCEN-LTAC-LRBS-LBSF-LWSK-BKPR-LATI-LYPG-LQSA-LYBE-LHBP-LZIB-LOWW-LDZA-LJLJ-LIPR-LIRE-LMML-HLLT-DTTA-DAAG-LESU-LEMD-LXGB-GMME-LPPT-EGJB-EGLL-EHAM-EBBR-LFPG-ELLX-LSZB-LSZE-LKPR-EDDB-EKCH-ENGM-ESSA-EFHK-EETN-EVRA-EPWA-EYVI-UMMS-UUEE-UKBB-LUKK-LGAV-HECA-HSSS-HHAS-HDAM-HAAB-HSSJ-HUEN-HRYR-HBBA-HTDO-HKJK-HCMM-FSIA-FMCH-FMCZ-FIMP-FMEE-FMMI-FQMA-FDMS-FXMM-FAWB-FVHA-FWKI-FLKK-FBSK-FYWH-FNLU-FZAA-FCBB-FEFF-FKYS-FGSL-FOOL-FPST-DBBB-DXXX-DGAA-DIYO-GLRB-GFLL-GUCY-GGOV-GBYD-GOOY-GVNP-GQNO-GABS-DFFD-DRRN-DNAA-FTTJ-EIDW-EKVG-BIKF-BGGH-LFVP-CYOW-KIAD-TXKF-MBPV-MTPP-MDSD-TJSJ-TIST-TUPJ-TQPF-TNCM-TKPK-TAPA-TRPG-TFFB-TDCF-TFFF-TLPC-TVSA-TBPB-TGPY-TTPP-SOCA-SMJP-SYCJ-SVMI-TNCC-TNCA-MKJP-MYNN-MUHA-MWCR-MZBZ-MGGT-MSLP-MHTG-MNMG-MROC-MPMG-SKBO-SEQM-SPJC-SLLP-SCEL-SFAL-SUMU-SAEZ-SGAS-SBBR-MMMX-NTAA-NCRG-NIUE-NSTU-NSFA-NFTF-NFNA-NGFU-NGTA-PKMJ-ANYN-AGGH-NVVV-NWWW-YSNF-NZWN-YSCB-AYPY-PTPN-PGSN-PGUM-PTRO-RPLL-VHHH-VMMC-VVNB-VLVT-VTBS-VDPP-WMKK-WSSS-YPCC-WIII-WPDL-WBSB-RCTP-RJTT-RKSI-ZKPY-ZBAA-ZMUB-ZULS-VQPR-VGHS-VYYY-VCBI-VRMM-VNKT-VIDP-OPIS-OAKB-UTDD

Leg List (with links)

Leg 1: Dushanbe (UTDD), Tajikistan to Tashkent (UTTT), Uzbekistan
Leg 2: Tashkent (UTTT), Uzbekistan to Bishkek (UCFM), Kyrgyzstan
Leg 3: Bishkek (UCFM), Kyrgystan to Nur-Sultan/Astana (UACC), Kazakhstan
Leg 4: Nur-Sultan/Astana (UACC), Kazakhstan to Ashgabat (UTAA), Turkmenistan
Leg 5: Ashgabat (UTAA), Turkmenistan to Tehran (OIII), Iran
Leg 6: Tehran (OIII), Iran to Baku (UBBB), Azerbaijan
Leg 7: Baku (UBBB), Azerbaijan to T’bilisi (UGTB), Georgia
Leg 8: T’bilisi (UGTB), Georgia to Yerevan (UDYZ), Armenia
Leg 9: Yerevan (UDYZ), Armenia to Baghdad (ORBI), Iraq
Leg 10: Baghdad (ORBI), Iraq to Kuwait (OKBK), Kuwait
Leg 11: Kuwait (OKBK), Kuwait to Manama (OBBI), Bahrain
Leg 12: Manama (OBBI), Bahrain to Muscat (OOMS), Oman
Leg 13: Muscat (OOMS), Oman to Abu Dhabi (OMAA), United Arab Emirates
Leg 14: Abu Dhabi (OMAA), United Arab Emirates to Doha (OTHH), Qatar
Leg 15: Doha (OTHH), Qatar to Riyadh (OERK), Saudi Arabia
Leg 16: Riyadh (OERK), Saudi Arabia to Amman (OJAI), Jordan
Leg 17: Amman (OJAI), Jordan to Jerusalem (LLJR), Israel
Leg 18: Jerusalem (LLJR), Israel to Damascus (OSDI), Syrian Arab Republic
Leg 19: Damascus (OSDI), Syrian Arab Republic to Beirut (OLBA), Lebanon
Leg 20: Beirut (OLBA), Lebanon to Nicosia (LCEN), Cyprus
Leg 21: Nicosia (LCEN), Cyprus to Ankara (LTAC), Turkey
Leg 22: Ankara (LTAC), Turkey to Bucuresti (LRBS), Romania
Leg 23: Bucuresti (LRBS), Romania to Sofia (LBSF), Bulgaria
Leg 24: Sofia (LBSF), Bulgaria to Skopje (LWSK), Macedonia
Leg 25: Skopje (LWSK), Macedonia to Pristina (BKPR), Kosovo
Leg 26: Pristina (BKPR), Kosovo to Tirane (LATI), Albania
Leg 27: Tirane (LATI), Albania to Podgorica (LYPG), Montenegro
Leg 28: Podgorica (LYPG), Montenegro to Sarajevo (LQSA), Bosnia and Herzegovina
Leg 29: Sarajevo (LQSA), Bosnia and Herzegovina to Belgrade (LYBE), Serbia
Leg 30: Belgrade (LYBE), Serbia to Budapest (LHBP), Hungary
Leg 31: Budapest (LHBP), Hungary to Bratislava (LZIB), Slovakia
Leg 32: Bratislava (LZIB), Slovakia to Vienna (LOWW), Austria
Leg 33: Vienna (LOWW), Austria to Zagreb (LDZA), Croatia
Leg 34: Zagreb (LDZA), Croatia to Ljubljana (LJLJ), Slovenia
Leg 35: Ljubljana (LJLJ), Slovenia to San Marino (LIPR), San Marino
Leg 36: San Marino (LIPR), San Marino to Rome (LIRE), Italy
Leg 37: Rome (LIRE), Italy to Valletta (LMML), Malta
Leg 38: Valletta (LMML), Malta to Tripoli (HLLT), Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
Leg 39: Tripoli (HLLT), Libyan Arab Jamahiriya to Tunis (DTTA), Tunisia
Leg 40: Tunis (DTTA), Tunisia to Algiers (DAAG), Algeria
Leg 41: Algiers (DAAG), Algeria to Andorra la Vella (LESU), Andorra
Leg 42: Andorra la Vella (LESU), Andorra to Madrid (LEMD), Spain
Leg 43: Madrid (LEMD), Spain to Gibralter (LXGB), Gibraltar
Leg 44: Gibralter (LXGB), Gibraltar to Rabat (GMME), Morocco
Leg 45: Rabat (GMME), Morocco to Lisbon (LPPT), Portugal
Leg 46: Lisbon (LPPT), Portugal to St. Peter Port (EGJB), Guernsey
Leg 47: St. Peter Port (EGJB), Guernsey to London (EGLL), United Kingdom
Leg 48: London (EGLL), United Kingdom to Amsterdam (EHAM), Netherlands
Leg 49: Amsterdam (EHAM), Netherlands to Brussels (EBBR), Belgium
Leg 50: Brussels (EBBR), Belgium to Paris (LFPG), France
Leg 51: Paris (LFPG), France to Luxembourg (ELLX), Luxembourg
Leg 52: Luxembourg (ELLX), Luxembourg to Bern (LSZB), Switzerland
Leg 53: Bern (LSZB), Switzerland to Vaduz (LSZE), Liechtenstein
Leg 54: Vaduz (LSZE), Liechtenstein to Prague (LKPR), Czech Republic
Leg 55: Prague (LKPR), Czech Republic to Berlin (EDDB), Germany
Leg 56: Berlin (EDDB), Germany to Copenhagen (EKCH), Denmark
Leg 57: Copenhagen (EKCH), Denmark to Oslo (ENGM), Norway
Leg 58: Oslo (ENGM), Norway to Stockholm (ESSA), Sweden
Leg 59: Stockholm (ESSA), Sweden to Helsinki (EFHK), Finland
Leg 60: Helsinki (EFHK), Finland to Tallinn (EETN), Estonia
Leg 61: Tallinn (EETN), Estonia to Riga (EVRA), Latvia
Leg 62: Riga (EVRA), Latvia to Warsaw (EPWA), Poland
Leg 63: Warsaw (EPWA), Poland to Vilnius (EYVI), Lithuania
Leg 64: Vilnius (EYVI), Lithuania to Minsk (UMMS), Belarus
Leg 65: Minsk (UMMS), Belarus to Moscow (UUEE), Russian Federation
Leg 66: Moscow (UUEE), Russian Federation to Kiev (UKBB), Ukraine
Leg 67: Kiev (UKBB), Ukraine to Chisinau (LUKK), Moldova
Leg 68: Chisinau (LUKK), Moldova to Athens (LGAV), Greece
Leg 69: Athens (LGAV), Greece to Cairo (HECA), Egypt
Leg 70: Cairo (HECA), Egypt to Khartoum (HSSS), Sudan
Leg 71: Khartoum (HSSS), Sudan to Asmara (HHAS), Eritrea
Leg 72: Asmara (HHAS), Eritrea to Djibouti (HDAM), Djibouti
Leg 73: Djibouti (HDAM), Djibouti to Addis Ababa (HAAB), Ethiopia
Leg 74: Addis Ababa (HAAB), Ethiopia to Juba (HSSJ), South Sudan
Leg 75: Juba (HSSJ), South Sudan to Kampala (HUEN), Uganda
Leg 76: Kampala (HUEN), Uganda to Kigali (HRYR), Rawanda
Leg 77: Kigali (HRYR), Rawanda to Bujumbura (HBBA), Burundi
Leg 78: Bujumbura (HBBA), Burundi to Dodoma (HTDO), Tanzania
Leg 79: Dodoma (HTDO), Tanzania to Nairobi (HKJK), Kenya
Leg 80: Nairobi (HKJK), Kenya to Mogadishu (HCMM), Somalia
Leg 81: Mogadishu (HCMM), Somalia to Victoria (FSIA), Seychelles
Leg 82: Victoria (FSIA), Seychelles to Moroni (FMCH), Comros
Leg 83: Moroni (FMCH), Comros to Mamoudzou (FMCZ), Mayotte
Leg 84: Mamoudzou (FMCZ), Mayotte to Port Louis (FIMP), Mauritius
Leg 85: Port Louis (FIMP), Mauritius to Saint-Denis (FMEE), Reunion Island
Leg 86: Saint-Denis (FMEE), Reunion Island to Antananarivo (FMMI), Madagascar
Leg 87: Antananarivo (FMMI), Madagascar to Maputo (FQMA), Mozambique
Leg 88: Maputo (FQMA), Mozambique to Mbabane (FDMS), Swaziland
Leg 89: Mbabane (FDMS), Swaziland to Maseru (FXMM), Lesotho
Leg 90: Maseru (FXMM), Lesotho to Pretoria (FAWB), South Africa
Leg 91: Pretoria (FAWB), South Africa to Harare (FVHA), Zimbabwe
Leg 92: Harare (FVHA), Zimbabwe to Lilongwe (FWKI), Malawi
Leg 93: Lilongwe (FWKI), Malawi to Lusaka (FLKK), Zambia
Leg 94: Lusaka (FLKK), Zambia to Gaborone (FBSK), Botswana
Leg 95: Gaborone (FBSK), Botswana to Windhoek (FYWH), Namibia
Leg 96: Windhoek (FYWH), Namibia to Luanda (FNLU), Angola
Leg 97: Luanda (FNLU), Angola to Kinshasa (FZAA), Democratic Republic of the Congo
Leg 98: Kinshasa (FZAA), Democratic Republic of the Congo to Brazzaville (FCBB), Congo
Leg 99: Brazzaville (FCBB), Congo to Bangui (FEFF), Central African Republic
Leg 100: Bangui (FEFF), Central African Republic to Yaounde (FKYS), Cameroon
Leg 101: Yaounde (FKYS), Cameroon to Malabo (FGSL), Equatorial Guinea
Leg 102: Malabo (FGSL), Equatorial Guinea to Libreville (FOOL), Gabon
Leg 103: Libreville (FOOL), Gabon to Sao Tome (FPST), Sao Tome and Principe
Leg 104: Sao Tome (FPST), Sao Tome and Principe to Cotonou (DBBB), Benin
Leg 105: Cotonou (DBBB), Benin to Lome (DXXX), Togo
Leg 106: Lome (DXXX), Togo to Accra (DGAA), Ghana
Leg 107: Accra (DGAA), Ghana to Yamoussoukro (DIYO), Cote d’Ivoire
Leg 108: Yamoussoukro (DIYO), Cote d’Ivoire to Monrovia (GLRB), Liberia
Leg 109: Monrovia (GLRB), Liberia to Freetown (GFLL), Sierra Leone
Leg 110: Freetown (GFLL), Sierra Leone to Conakry (GUCY), Guinea
Leg 111: Conakry (GUCY), Guinea to Bissau (GGOV), Guinea-Bissau
Leg 112: Bissau (GGOV), Guinea-Bissau to Banjul (GBYD), Gambia
Leg 113: Banjul (GBYD), Gambia to Dakar (GOOY), Senegal
Leg 114: Dakar (GOOY), Senegal to Praia (GVNP), Cape Verde
Leg 115: Praia (GVNP), Cape Verde to Nouakchott (GQNO), Mauritania
Leg 116: Nouakchott (GQNO), Mauritania to Bamako (GABS), Mali
Leg 117: Bamako (GABS), Mali to Ouagadougou (DFFD), Burkina Faso
Leg 118: Ouagadougou (DFFD), Burkina Faso to Niamey (DRRN), Niger
Leg 119: Niamey (DRRN), Niger to Abuja (DNAA), Nigeria
Leg 120: Abuja (DNAA), Nigeria to N’Djamena (FTTJ), Chad
Leg 121: N’Djamena (FTTJ), Chad to Dublin (EIDW), Ireland
Leg 122: Dublin (EIDW), Ireland to Torshavn (EKVG), Faroe Islands
Leg 123: Torshavn (EKVG), Faroe Islands to Reykjavik (BIKF), Iceland
Leg 124: Reykjavik (BIKF), Iceland to Nuuk (BGGH), Greenland
Leg 125: Nuuk (BGGH), Greenland to Saint-Pierre (LFVP), Saint Pierre and Miquelon
Leg 126: Saint-Pierre (LFVP), Saint Pierre and Miquelon to Ottawa (CYOW), Canada
Leg 127: Ottawa (CYOW), Canada to Washington DC (KIAD), United States of America
Leg 128: Washington DC (KIAD), United States of America to Hamilton (TXKF), Bermuda
Leg 129: Hamilton (TXKF), Bermuda to Cockburn Town (MBPV), Turks and Caicos Islands
Leg 130: Cockburn Town (MBPV), Turks and Caicos Islands to Port-au-Prince (MTPP), Haiti
Leg 131: Port-au-Prince (MTPP), Haiti to Santo Domingo (MDSD), Dominica Republic
Leg 132: Santo Domingo (MDSD), Dominica Republic to San Juan (TJSJ), Puerto Rico
Leg 133: San Juan (TJSJ), Puerto Rico to Charlotte Amalie (TIST), United States of Virgin Islands
Leg 134: Charlotte Amalie (TIST), United States of Virgin Islands to Road Town (TUPJ), British Virgin Islands
Leg 135: Road Town (TUPJ), British Virgin Islands to The Valley (TQPF), Anguilla
Leg 136: The Valley (TQPF), Anguilla to Philipsburg (TNCM), Sint Maarten
Leg 137: Philipsburg (TNCM), Sint Maarten to Basseterre (TKPK), Saint Kitts and Nevis
Leg 138: Basseterre (TKPK), Saint Kitts and Nevis to West Indies (TAPA), Antigua and Barbuda
Leg 139: West Indies (TAPA), Antigua and Barbuda to Plymouth (TRPG), Montserrat
Leg 140: Plymouth (TRPG), Montserrat to Basse-Terre (TFFB), Guadeloupe
Leg 141: Basse-Terre (TFFB), Guadeloupe to Roseau (TDCF), Dominica
Leg 142: Roseau (TDCF), Dominica to Fort-de-France (TFFF), Martinique
Leg 143: Fort-de-France (TFFF), Martinique to Castries (TLPC), Saint Lucia
Leg 144: Castries (TLPC), Saint Lucia to Kingstown (TVSA), Saint Vincent and the Greenadines
Leg 145: Kingstown (TVSA), Saint Vincent and the Greenadines to Bridgetown (TBPB), Barbados
Leg 146: Bridgetown (TBPB), Barbados to Saint George’s (TGPY), Grenada
Leg 147: Saint George’s (TGPY), Grenada to Port of Spain (TTPP), Trinidad and Tobago
Leg 148: Port of Spain (TTPP), Trinidad and Tobago to Cayenne (SOCA), French Guiana
Leg 149: Cayenne (SOCA), French Guiana to Paramaribo (SMJP), Suriname
Leg 150: Paramaribo (SMJP), Suriname to Georgetown (SYCJ), Guyana
Leg 151: Georgetown (SYCJ), Guyana to Caracas (SVMI), Venezuela
Leg 152: Caracas (SVMI), Venezuela to Curacao (TNCC), Curacao
Leg 153: Curacao (TNCC), Curacao to Oranjestad (TNCA), Aruba
Leg 154: Oranjestad (TNCA), Aruba to Kingston (MKJP), Jamaica
Leg 155: Kingston (MKJP), Jamaica to Nassau (MYNN), Bahamas
Leg 156: Nassau (MYNN), Bahamas to Havana (MUHA), Cuba
Leg 157: Havana (MUHA), Cuba to George Town (MWCR), Cayman Islands
Leg 158: George Town (MWCR), Cayman Islands to Belmopan (MZBZ), Belize
Leg 159: Belmopan (MZBZ), Belize to Guatemala (MGGT), Guatemala
Leg 160: Guatemala (MGGT), Guatemala to San Salvador (MSLP), El Salvador
Leg 161: San Salvador (MSLP), El Salvador to Tegucigalpa (MHTG), Honduras
Leg 162: Tegucigalpa (MHTG), Honduras to Managua (MNMG), Nicaragua
Leg 163: Managua (MNMG), Nicaragua to San Jose (MROC), Costa Rica
Leg 164: San Jose (MROC), Costa Rica to Panama (MPMG), Panama
Leg 165: Panama (MPMG), Panama to Bogota (SKBO), Colombia
Leg 166: Bogota (SKBO), Colombia to Quito (SEQM), Ecuador
Leg 167: Quito (SEQM), Ecuador to Lima (SPJC), Peru
Leg 168: Lima (SPJC), Peru to La Paz (SLLP), Bolivia
Leg 169: La Paz (SLLP), Bolivia to Santiago (SCEL), Chile
Leg 170: Santiago (SCEL), Chile to Stanley (SFAL), Falkland Islands
Leg 171: Stanley (SFAL), Falkland Islands to Montevideo (SUMU), Uruguay
Leg 172: Montevideo (SUMU), Uruguay to Buenos Aires (SAEZ), Argentina
Leg 173: Buenos Aires (SAEZ), Argentina to Asuncion (SGAS), Paraguay
Leg 174: Asuncion (SGAS), Paraguay to Brasilia (SBBR), Brazil
Leg 175: Brasilia (SBBR), Brazil to Mexico City (MMMX), Mexico
Leg 176: Mexico City (MMMX), Mexico to Papeete (NTAA), French Polynesia
Leg 177: Papeete (NTAA), French Polynesia to Avarua (NCRG), Cook Islands
Leg 178: Avarua (NCRG), Cook Islands to Alofi (NIUE), Niue
Leg 179: Alofi (NIUE), Niue to Pago Pago (NSTU), American Samoa
Leg 180: Pago Pago (NSTU), American Samoa to Apia (NSFA), Samoa
Leg 181: Apia (NSFA), Samoa to Nuku’alofa (NFTF), Tonga
Leg 182: Nuku’alofa (NFTF), Tonga to Suva (NFNA), Fiji
Leg 183: Suva (NFNA), Fiji to Funafuti (NGFU), Tuvalu
Leg 184: Funafuti (NGFU), Tuvalu to Tarawa (NGTA), Kiribati
Leg 185: Tarawa (NGTA), Kiribati to Majuro (PKMJ), Marshall Islands
Leg 186: Majuro (PKMJ), Marshall Islands to Nauru Island (ANYN), Nauru
Leg 187: Nauru Island (ANYN), Nauru to Honiara (AGGH), Solomon Islands
Leg 188: Honiara (AGGH), Solomon Islands to Port-Vila (NVVV), Vanuatu
Leg 189: Port-Vila (NVVV), Vanuatu to Noumea (NWWW), New Caledonia
Leg 190: Noumea (NWWW), New Caledonia to Kingston (YSNF), Norfolk Island
Leg 191: Kingston (YSNF), Norfolk Island to Wellington (NZWN), New Zealand
Leg 192: Wellington (NZWN), New Zealand to Canberra (YSCB), Australia
Leg 193: Canberra (YSCB), Australia to Port Moresby (AYPY), Papua New Guinea
Leg 194: Port Moresby (AYPY), Papua New Guinea to Palikir (PTPN), Micronesia
Leg 195: Palikir (PTPN), Micronesia to Saipan (PGSN), Northern Mariana Islands
Leg 196: Saipan (PGSN), Northern Mariana Islands to Hagatna (PGUM), Guam
Leg 197: Hagatna (PGUM), Guam to Koror (PTRO), Palau
Leg 198: Koror (PTRO), Palau to Manila (RPLL), Philippines
Leg 199: Manila (RPLL), Philippines to Hong Kong (VHHH), Hong Kong
Leg 200: Hong Kong (VHHH), Hong Kong to Macau (VMMC), Macao, China
Leg 201: Macau (VMMC), Macao, China to Hanoi (VVNB), Viet Nam
Leg 202: Hanoi (VVNB), Viet Nam to Vientiane (VLVT), Lao People’s Democratic Republic
Leg 203: Vientiane (VLVT), Lao People’s Democratic Republic to Bangkok (VTBS), Thailand
Leg 204: Bangkok (VTBS), Thailand to Phnom Penh (VDPP), Cambodia
Leg 205: Phnom Penh (VDPP), Cambodia to Kuala Lumpur (WMKK), Malaysia
Leg 206: Kuala Lumpur (WMKK), Malaysia to Singapore (WSSS), Singapore
Leg 207: Singapore (WSSS), Singapore to West Island (YPCC), Cocos (Keeling) Islands
Leg 208: West Island (YPCC), Cocos (Keeling) Islands to Jakarta (WIII), Indonesia
Leg 209: Jakarta (WIII), Indonesia to Dili (WPDL), East Timor
Leg 210: Dili (WPDL), East Timor to Bandar Seri Begawan (WBSB), Brunei Darussalam
Leg 211: Bandar Seri Begawan (WBSB), Brunei Darussalam to Taipei (RCTP), Taiwan (Republic of China)
Leg 212: Taipei (RCTP), Taiwan (Republic of China) to Tokyo (RJTT), Japan
Leg 213: Tokyo (RJTT), Japan to Seoul (RKSI), Republic of Korea
Leg 214: Seoul (RKSI), Republic of Korea to Pyongyang (ZKPY), North Korea
Leg 215: Pyongyang (ZKPY), North Korea to Beijing (ZBAA), China
Leg 216: Beijing (ZBAA), China to Ulaanbaatar (ZMUB), Mongolia
Leg 217: Ulaanbaatar (ZMUB), Mongolia to Lhasa (ZULS), Tibet
Leg 218: Lhasa (ZULS), Tibet to Thimphu (VQPR), Bhutan
Leg 219: Thimphu (VQPR), Bhutan to Dhaka (VGHS), Bangladesh
Leg 220: Dhaka (VGHS), Bangladesh to Yangon (VYYY), Myanmar
Leg 221: Yangon (VYYY), Myanmar to Colombo (VCBI), Sri Lanka
Leg 222: Colombo (VCBI), Sri Lanka to Male (VRMM), Maldives
Leg 223: Male (VRMM), Maldives to Kathmandu (VNKT), Nepal
Leg 224: Kathmandu (VNKT), Nepal to New Delhi (VIDP), India
Leg 225: New Delhi (VIDP), India to Islamabad (OPIS), Pakistan
Leg 226: Islamabad (OPIS), Pakistan to Kabul (OAKB), Afghanistan
Leg 227: Kabul (OAKB), Afghanistan to Dushanbe (UTDD), Tajikistan

The Plane

OK, all good - but what aircraft are we going to do this in?

My first thought was the CJ4 - especially given the excellent Working Title mod. However, the range just isn’t big enough to be able to make some of the longer legs. That got me to think about the Longitude - again with an excellent mod this is a great aircraft.

However, there is one challenge that I couldn’t resist - and that’s the PMDG DC-6. My thinking here is that, a bit like the TBM, I can use this trip as a way to properly learn how to fly the DC-6. I’ve flown it a little so far with the assistance of the AFE. So my plan is to learn to fly the DC-6 without the help of the AFE, learning as we go. I also plan to gradually wean myself off the GPS system and move to more traditional means of navigation

7 Likes

Leg 1: Dushanbe (UTDD), Tajikistan to Tashkent (UTTT), Uzbekistan


Summary

Well what a great start to my journey. Largely clear skies along the way. Tried to keep the cruising altitude low enough to avoid having to use the superchargers (not worked out how to use them yet!). That’s why I headed North West first rather than straight North over the mountains as otherwise I’d have to be getting up to 20,000 feet or higher. A trouble free flight all round and not my worst landing.


Tajikistan

  • Capital: Dushanbe
  • Population 9 million
  • Area 143,100 sq km (55,251 sq miles)
  • Major languages Tajik, Uzbek, Russian
  • Major religion Islam
  • Life expectancy 68 years (men), 74 years (women)
  • Currency Tajik somoni

Uzbekistan

  • Capital: Tashkent
  • Population 32 million
  • Area 447,400 sq km (172,700 sq miles)
  • Major languages Uzbek, Russian, Tajik
  • Major religion Islam
  • Life expectancy 68 years (men), 74 years (women)
  • Currency Uzbek som

Logbook
This Leg Leg 1
Date 22/08/2021
Departure Airport ICAO UTDD
Airport Dushanbe International Airport
Capital City Dushanbe
Country Tajikistan
Runway 27
Arrival Airport ICAO UTTT
Airport Tashkent International Airport
Capital City Tashkent
Country Uzbekistan
Runway 08L
Time (Local) Pushback 12:14
Take Off 12:20
Touchdown 13:27
Arrival 13:30
Air time 01:16
Total Time 01:07
Ground Distance (Nm) 316
Air Distance (Nm) 296
Great Circle Distance (Nm) 164
Fuel Start (lbs) 8,000
Fuel End (lbs) 4,525
Fuel Used (lbs) 3,475
SID GETLI7
Route UTDD/27 GETLI7 GETLI DCT BIBON DCT USETU DCT IDSAN A359 ASLOK DCT
DIBAD Z554 DODUR DODUR1Z UTTT/08L
STAR DODUR1Z
Approach ILS 08L
Passengers (000lbs) 0
Cargo (000lbs) 0
Take Off Weight (000lbs) 68.5
Cruising Altitude (feet) 15,000
Cumulative Ground Distance (Nm) 316
Air Distance (Nm) 296
Great Circle Distance (Nm) 164
Total air time 01:16
Total time 01:07
Fuel Used (lbs) 3,475

Flight Plan: Leg 1 - Dushanbe (UTDD) to Yuzhny (UTTT).lnmpln (2.4 KB)

Route Map

Timelapse video

Screenshots:

Take Off






Cruise


















Landing







1 Like

Leg 2: Tashkent (UTTT), Uzbekistan to Bishkek (UCFM), Kyrgyzstan


Summary

Leg 2 sees me going from Uzbekistan to Kyrgyzstan. Not too long a trip this one, and again the weather is with me. Much flatter terrain here as I head further North - although need to take a somewhat circuitous route to avoid the mountains again. Able to keep the cruise nice and low to be fuel efficient. No surprises on route and keeping it nice and straightforward this early into the journey. Some nice colours and patterns in the pretty barren landscape below us for most of the way.


Kyrgyzstan

  • Capital: Bishkek
  • Population 6 million
  • Area 199,900 sq km (77,182 sq miles)
  • Major languages Kyrgyz, Russian
  • Major religions Islam, Christianity
  • Life expectancy 67 years (men), 75 years (women)
  • Currency som

Logbook
This Leg Leg 2
Date 28/08/2021
Departure Airport ICAO UTTT
Airport Tashkent International Airport
Capital City Tashkent
Country Uzbekistan
Runway 08L
Arrival Airport ICAO UCFM
Airport Manas International Airport
Capital City Bishkek
Country Kyrgyzstan
Runway 08
Actual Time (Local) Pushback Time 11:00
Take Off Time 11:03
Touchdown Time 12:56
Arrival Time 13:00
Air time 02:00
Total Time 01:53
Ground Distance (Nm) 377
Air Distance (Nm) 363
Great Circle Distance (Nm) 255
Fuel Start (lbs) 7,524
Fuel End (lbs) 3,262
Fuel Used (lbs) 4,262
SID BAMUT1A
Route UTTT/08L BAMUT1A BAMUT DCT BEDNU Z554 SMK DCT ARBOL DCT TOMGO L147
BASAN KALIN1 UCFM/08
STAR KALIN1
Approach ILS 08
Passengers (000 lbs) 0
Cargo (000 lbs) 0
Take Off Weight (000lbs) 68.5
Cruising Altitude (feet) 7,000
Cumulative Ground Distance (Nm) 693
Air Distance (Nm) 659
Great Circle Distance (Nm) 419
Total air time 03:16
Total time 03:00
Fuel Used (lbs) 7,737

Flightplan: Yuzhny (UTTT) to Manas (UCFM).lnmpln (2.4 KB)

Route Map

Timelapse Video

Screenshots:

Take Off








Cruise


























Landing











1 Like

Leg 3: Bishkek (UCFM), Kyrgyzstan to Nur-Sultan/Astana (UACC), Kazakhstan


Summary

Leg 3 sees me going from Kyrgystan to Kazakhstan. Once again the weather is with me - not sure how long this will last. Properlt flat terrain for this leg as we are well over the flat plains now. Another straightforward leg, without incident, and a decent landing actually. Hard to tell if the wheels are down and sometimes it feels like I;m bouncing on the runway whereas it is actually the suspension travel.


Kazakhstan

  • Republic of Kazakhstan
  • Capital: Nur-Sultan (also known as Astana)
  • Population 18 million (UN, 2012)
  • Area 2.7 million sq km (1 million sq miles)
  • Major languages Kazakh, Russian
  • Major religions Islam, Christianity
  • Life expectancy 68 years (men), 77 years (women) (UN)
  • Currency Tenge

Logbook
This Leg Leg 3
Date 06/09/2021
Departure Airport ICAO UCFM
Airport Manas International Airport
Capital City Bishkek
Country Kyrgyzstan
Runway 08
Arrival Airport ICAO UACC
Airport Nursultan Nazarbayev International Airport
Capital City Nur-Sultan
Country Kazakhstan
Runway 04
Actual Time (Local) Pushback Time 12:03
Take Off Time 12:05
Touchdown Time 14:09
Arrival Time 14:10
Air time 02:04
Total Time 02:07
Ground Distance (Nm) 637
Air Distance (Nm) 638
Great Circle Distance (Nm) 494
Fuel Start (lbs) 9,000
Fuel End (lbs) 1,491
Fuel Used (lbs) 7,509
SID BASAN1
Route UCFM/08 BASAN1 BASAN L147 OBAMA DCT GURPI GURPI1K UACC/04
STAR GURPI1K
Approach ILS 04
Passengers (000 lbs) 0
Cargo (000 lbs) 0
Take Off Weight (000lbs) 69.8
Cruising Altitude (feet) 7,000
Cumulative Ground Distance (Nm) 1,330
Air Distance (Nm) 1,297
Great Circle Distance (Nm) 913
Total air time 05:04
Total time 05:23
Fuel Used (lbs) 15,246

Flightplan: Manas (UCFM) to Nursultan Nazarbayev International Airport (UACC).lnmpln (1.9 KB)

Timelapse Video

Screenshots

Take Off











Cruise






















Landing













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Leg 182: Nuku’alofa (NFTF), Tonga to Suva (NFNA), Fiji

Leg 183: Suva (NFNA), Fiji to Funafuti (NGFU), Tuvalu

Leg 184: Funafuti (NGFU), Tuvalu to Tarawa (NGTA), Kiribati

Leg 185: Tarawa (NGTA), Kiribati to Majuro (PKMJ), Marshall Islands

Leg 186: Majuro (PKMJ), Marshall Islands to Nauru Island (ANYN), Nauru

Leg 187: Nauru Island (ANYN), Nauru to Honiara (AGGH), Solomon Islands

Leg 188: Honiara (AGGH), Solomon Islands to Port-Vila (NVVV), Vanuatu

Leg 189: Port-Vila (NVVV), Vanuatu to Noumea (NWWW), New Caledonia

Leg 190: Noumea (NWWW), New Caledonia to Kingston (YSNF), Norfolk Island

Leg 191: Kingston (YSNF), Norfolk Island to Wellington (NZWN), New Zealand

Leg 192: Wellington (NZWN), New Zealand to Canberra (YSCB), Australia

Leg 193: Canberra (YSCB), Australia to Port Moresby (AYPY), Papua New Guinea

Leg 194: Port Moresby (AYPY), Papua New Guinea to Palikir (PTPN), Micronesia

Leg 195: Palikir (PTPN), Micronesia to Saipan (PGSN), Northern Mariana Islands