Arizona Family Sets Out to Visit Every LDS Temple in the World in Two Years

Travel Plans

Currently, the Alcantars are in what they like to call Phase 1 of their trip, which includes visiting the temples in the 50 states and Canada. They plan to be done by October 2018, allowing for a few runs back home for Christmas, Zander’s baptism, and other pre-planned events.

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The Alcantars planned route for "Phase 1" of their temple trip

Next fall their oldest son, Dokken, now living on his own and working, will join them for Phase 2, in which the family will begin visiting temples in Europe and elsewhere.  They hope to make it to the dedication of the Rome Italy Temple, which is on schedule to be dedicated sometime next year.

The Alcantars aim to be back home in Arizona after two years of traveling, in time for Drezen to start Jr. High. They realize they might not make it to every temple in that time, but plan to hit “a lot [of temples] in Europe and then at least visit every continent before we come home,” Sal said.

Frequently Asked Questions

“How do you pay for it?”

Sal and Ange are very ready to admit that they have been blessed financially. Because of Sal’s multiple businesses, they have an income even while they travel.

However, they’ve met other young families on the road with various financial situations, and they believe that if it’s something you want to do, you can figure out how to make it work.

According to the Alcantars, some families lease or sell their homes or use savings to fund their travels. They also point out that some expenses remain the same or swap out. “You’re going to be spending money at home on food and groceries, and you can spend that on the road. . . . In some ways we’re saving because we’re not doing athletic things or piano lessons or various bills you have at home,” Ange said.

“What about school?”

The Alcantar kids are enrolled in an LDS-based homeschool program called Life School, which allows the family the flexibility they need, and both Ange and Sal feel that visiting historical sites in person is better than reading about them in a textbook or online. Their not-so-routine daily studies include a mix of scripture study, physical activity (one son is training for a half-marathon), reading, vocabulary, math, and of course, sightseeing.

“Tonight, in a couple of hours, we’re going to jump on a bus and we’re going to go take a night tour of Washington D.C.,” Sal said at the time of the interview. “We’re going to go see the U.S. Capitol, the Whitehouse, the Lincoln Memorial, the Vietnam Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial . . . we look at that as a school field trip day.”

“How can you stand to be around your family so much?”

It’s true—the Alcantars are with each other all day, every day. Except for one date, when the kids were able to stay with some friends in Ohio, the only time Sal and Ange are away from the kids is when they each take turns in the temple. “That’s kind of abnormal for Ange and I because . . . we were religious about going on weekly dates,” Sal said.

Ange added that sometimes they try to take the kids on individual outings for more one-on-one time. Other than that, they’re “all together. Always.”

They’ve had people tell them, “That’s insane. I could never be around my family that much.”

Sal’s response? “I get it. I understand it. But we are going to be with our families through the eternities. And if I can’t spend two years with my family in an RV, how can I expect to be with my family throughout the eternities?”

What Makes it All Worth It

Ange and Sal hope that all in all, this trip teaches their kids that family is the most important thing, and that the temple is precious to both of them. They hope they can also take away a deeper understanding of the world and of “our brothers and sisters who are out there.”

“And then, not only that, but just the service. And the missionary opportunities. And the memories that are being built. That’s really the biggest thing. We want to let other people know that those things are extremely possible, and important.”

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