The 33-year-old adventurer from Liverpool used buses, taxis, trains and his own two feet to travel 160,000 miles or 2,56,000 km in 1,426 days - all on a shoestring budget of just $100 a week.
He spent four days "crossing open ocean in a leaky boat" to reach Cape Verde, was jailed for a week in the Congo for being a "spy", was arrested trying to "sneak into" Russia and had to be "rescued from Muslim fundamentalists by a Filipino ladyboy called Jenn".
And on Monday Hughes ended the epic four-year journey by crossing into Juba, the capital of South Sudan, which did not even exist when he set off from his hometown of Liverpool on New Year's Day 2009.
"I love travel, and I guess my reason for doing it was I wanted to see if this could be done, by one person travelling on a shoestring," he told the Christian Science Monitor.
"I think I also wanted to show that the world is not some big, scary place, but in fact is full of people who want to help you even if you are a stranger."