Well, it’s almost the end of the year and it’s that time when we all start reflecting on the year that has passed, the ups and downs, the achievements, the un-achievements (lets not call them failures!).
You may also be inundated with review posts at the moment…so sorry to add to the pile, but here goes mine!
It’s been a fairly eventful year for me, it started off with another fab trip to Australia, somewhere that I always love returning to.
I am extremely lucky that I get to visit this country on an annual basis at the moment and it never gets boring. I always love my (albeit rather jetlagged!) first morning there, waking up and walking down to the beach to be greeted by ocean, space and (hopefully!) blue skies…it never gets old!
Read more: Swansea – Australia that is!
After Australia, I was able to fulfill a travel dream and visit Laos, a country that had been on the radar for a while.
When we arrived in Luang Prabang and were greeted with the most amazing sunset and scenery as soon as we stepped off the plane, I knew it was going to be a good trip!
And oh my word, it was!
It didn’t fail to disappoint, elephants, waterfalls and wats, made this trip one to remember – not to forget the spectacular scenery around Luang Prabang.
Visiting the Elephant Conservation Centre was a definite highlight and an experience I will remember forever. Seeing these rescued elephants and witnessing the lengths that the staff go to to protect and care for them was a privilege.
There is so much more to the country and I can’t wait to return to Laos again one day and explore further.
Read more: An Emotional Sunrise in Laos / Conquering Mount Phousi in Luang Prabang / Cooling Off at Kuang Si Falls / Delicate Negotiations in Laos / Elephant Conservation Centre, Laos / Sunsets Galore in Laos / To Alms Or Not To Alms / To Visit Laos in March? The Burning Question! / World Elephant Day 2018
Back in the UK, I feel like I managed to cover a fair bit of ground this year. Exploring my backyard is something that I definitely need to do more of, there are so many unique and interesting places to visit here.
This year I discovered Wells in Somerset, with its magnificent cathedral as its backdrop, it served as the perfect weekend destination for my mum and I to explore and relax in – the delicious gin and tonics served at our hotel and the glorious weather we experienced also definitely helped!
Then it was on to Lewes in East Sussex, to visit friends. I always love visiting this part of the world, it is just too pretty for words… so take a look instead…
It was a fabulous weekend catching up with friends and exploring a bit more of what the town has to offer. Fish and chips in the car at the seaside was definitely one of my highlights!
We were in need of some sun, sea and sand as the summer here drew to a close, so it was off to Menorca in the Balearic Islands we went! A place that is becoming a bit of a regular haunt of ours now, but for very good reasons.
I always struggle a bit with returning somewhere I have already been, there are so many places in the world to see… but sometimes familiarity is good.
We always try to stay somewhere new if we go to Menorca and explore the island a bit further. I love that there is just so much beauty and culture to have on such a small island!
This year we stayed in Son Bou which gave us a great base to explore the surrounding area. This trip was a bit of a mixed bag though, bad weather and illness plagued, but we finished the trip off with a full day of sightseeing, a great way to end our holidays.
If (when!) we return again, I would actually like to stay in the capital Mahon for a few days, an experience that I think would be quite different from staying at one of the many resorts around the island. Just another thing for the very long wish list I have!
The last trip of the year was a special visit to Blackpool. I say it was special because we went to visit family who we haven’t seen for a long time.
Blackpool holds good memories for me of family who have long since passed. The weekend didn’t disappoint, it was brilliant!! Not only did we catch up with the family, we also managed to be tourists – it couldn’t be missed! A trip up Blackpool Tower, down the lights, eating rock and fish and chips…that’s what it was all about and I loved it!
That was the year that was!
In addition to the travels above, there were other highlights throughout the year. I managed to hit the Wimbledon tennis championships again (twice!), witness the comedy legends that are Chris Rock, Jon Stewart and Dave Chappelle do their thing live and had a few fantastic weekends in fancy London town!
Of course there have been ups and downs, this is life after all and it’s not all glossy like these photos. However, it’s definitely been a fun year overall!
Regarding getting away, I always want to travel much more than I do, but I’m also very lucky and eternally grateful that I am able to travel and see as much as I do.
I have a travel wish list that goes on, and on, and on…! I am slowly working my way through it and I can’t wait to see what next year brings! The only thing on the horizon at the moment is Australia (bring it on!)…and then who knows!
I (always!) have a lot of grand plans, most of which probably won’t actually materialise (yet anyway!) because of money and time restraints but…
…you’ve got to dream big sometimes, right?
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU ALL!