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Last Updated: Monday, 20 August 2007, 20:55 GMT 21:55 UK
Globetrotting family return home
Joe and Rachel Pritchard with children Jenna, Rhys and Rowan
The Pritchards arrived home in Llandovery on Monday
A globetrotting family are spending the first night in their own beds after an "amazing year" travelling the world.

Joe and Rachel Pritchard put their marketing company on hold to take their children Rowan, nine, Rhys, seven, and Jenna, five, on an epic adventure.

Since leaving home in Llandovery in Carmarthenshire last August they have visited 29 countries.

The couple say they wanted to give their children the chance to learn more about the world at first hand.

The Pritchards circumnavigated the globe by plane, train, boat and camper van.

They started off by crossing the Atlantic and visiting New York.

After seeing the sights in the USA and Canada they headed to south America.

Jenna at Machu-Picchu in South America
The Pritchards visited 29 countries
They took 36 flights, 47 boat journeys and 21 by train
They travelled 14,000 miles by car
They arrived home a year and a day after setting out

It was then on to Australasia, Asia and finally back through Europe.

Mrs Pritchard said: "We feel it's an excellent way to teach the children about geography, history and cultural anthropology - we wanted to teach our kids about the world by showing it to them.

"It was just great fun - people think it is quite hard to entertain children but when you have amazing things to show them all around the world its very easy.

Her husband explained: "We travelled to New York to break the children in gently with a first world country and we then travelled in camper van from one side of Canada to the other.

"We went to Costa Rica after that which was our first exotic location and it really was a truly fantastic country."

On their travels they encountered all sorts of monkeys, kangaroos, crocodiles and tarantulas and also ate all manner of dishes including donkey stew and guinea pig lasagne.

Joe, Rowan, Rhys and Jenna in Beijing
It was just great fun
Rachel Pritchard

"In Borneo we were walking through the jungle and I had been carrying Jenna - she managed fall asleep on me and as I shifted her weight to make her more comfortable she screamed out loud.

"I found that she was covered in leeches all across her stomach and her thighs and it was one of the points in the journey when we thought 'what are we doing to our poor children?'"

Fortunately such dramas proved rare.

Now safely back home friends and family visited Llandovery to greet them on Tuesday.

After unpacking Mr Pritchard said they would take a few days to settle down although needed to prepare the children for a return to school in two weeks.

He said during their travels they had thought about their future careers and may look at using the experience in a new venture.

Hear the Pritchards talk about their experiences

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