As one of my "resolutions" (I hate that word, don't you?) for 2017 is to see more of the world, I thought it would be a good idea to have a little look back on some of the places I managed to get to in 2016. Not as many as I would have liked, but I'm definitely not complaining because there were quite a few little trips - all of which I really enjoyed and were all completely different. I managed to see quite a few places in the UK too, but I'm mainly focusing on the places I went to which were across the sea in this post.
I started off the year by heading off to Paris. I hadn't been to Paris as an adult before - the last time I went flared jeans were still in fashion and my biggest memory of the trip was the fly breaking on those jeans (the only pair I had with me) and being pretty embarrassed about the whole thing for the entire trip. This time around I had some amazing food - there was cafe gourmand, bread, macarons, custard tarts, saucisson, country pate, beef that was practically blue, frites...I could go on. We stayed in a very French hotel and I was fully converted to the beauty that is the Eurostar. You can see my posts here, here and here.
In May, I went off to Portugal with a few friends from Uni. We're all very different, so I'm surprised the trip worked out as well as it did. One of the joys of a holiday like that with so many different people is that you get lots of recommendations from other people and everyone has different ideas as to what to try - things that I never would have tried had I been left to my own devices. We started off in Lisbon, where we stayed for two days in my first ever AirBnb (p.s, I am a complete convert). I fell in love with the tiles of Lisbon and how colourful it was - but I did not fall in love with the amount of hills. Afterwards we caught the bus for two hours to a small place called Peniche to surf for five days and chill by the beach. I learned two things. One - the Portugese version of National Express puts ours to shame. Two - I hate surfing and I will never do it ever again. I took all my photos on a disposable camera, and as a result, I still don't have any photos from the trip or posts about it, because my lazy bum hasn't quite got around to getting them developed.
This was my big holiday of the year! I so badly having just finished working on the EU referendum campaign, I needed a break and ten days away on an island seemed the way to do it. Zante was boiling hot - some days it hit 40 degrees but I managed to get one of the first tans I've ever had and spent most of the day lounging by the pool or on the beach, before drinking cocktails. I'll probably never go back to Zante however, to say that I never fell in love with it would be an understatement. If you're looking for a great place to go in Greece, this wouldn't be it. You can see my post about it here.
I think one of my main aims in life would be to spend as much time in Jersey as I can manage without ever having to live there. I love the break from London, and there really isn't much of a better place to head than the Channel Islands. I love the incredible beaches, the sea food and the fact that the flight there only takes half an hour. You can see my posts here and here.
I so badly wanted to love Iceland, but I'm not sure I did. I'm not sure its Iceland's fault either (apart from maybe how bloody expensive the place is, almost bankrupt worthy). It rained the entire time we were there (proper piss it down rain, not just spitting) and it was very cold. That mean we never got to see the Northern Lights, which was half of the reason for the trip. I couldn't get over the way the hot water smelt like sulphur and I had a miserable cold while I was there. Having said that, it was an entirely different place to visit, I ate some incredible (if slightly odd) food and got to see the 25th Wonder of the World. As you do. My posts are here and here.
This was my last trip of the year, and I was only there for the weekend but I absolutely loved it! We stayed in a lovely little AirBnb and managed to fit in quite a bit of stuff to do. Even though the city is quite expensive, it has such a great atmosphere. We went on walking tours and to Christmas markets and ate some pretty nice food, including visiting an incredible food hall. You can see posts here, here, here and here.
And so the aim for 2017 is to see more and get a little further afield. Maybe get a few of these ticked off?
Anyone else got any travel plans?