For my final post of the year 2018, I’m summing up my trips this year, some of which I’m still yet to write an individual post about (keep an eye out in 2019). I’m trying to make a point to explore more of England and I think I’ve managed pretty well this year. I love reflecting back on my travels and remembering the wonderful experiences I’ve had. I do this by looking through my photos and reading my diaries and blog posts.
Below I’m sharing a brief summary of my 12 trips including 8 countries.
My first trip of 2018 was a hop over to the Cotswolds with my boyfriend, Mike. We visited for Valentine’s Day and stayed in an adorable cottage in the prettiest village in England, Castle Combe. We visited other villages in the Cotswolds too including Bradford on Avon and Bibury. Each village seemed completely postcard-perfect; I would love to return in the summer for lots of hiking.
Up next in 2018 was a quick weekend break to Wales. We actually stayed in Liverpool with some friends but took a day trip to Snowdonia National Park. We climbed the gorgeous Cwm Idwal with views which made me feel like I was part of the Lord of the Rings set. We firstly walked to the lake which was only around 20 minutes. We then walked up and around the lake for more wonderful scenery.
Chefchaouen and Fez, Morocco
This was my mum and I’s second trip to Morocco and we loved it even more than the first time. The blue city, Chefchaouen was so fun and colourful (mainly one colour…) to wander around. We stayed in the blue pearl for five days which meant that we could wake up early each day and beat the crowds. Because of this, we virtually had the streets to ourselves most mornings. We then headed over to Fez for a couple of nights and were transported back in time in the Old Medina.
Amalfi Coast, Italy
This was the ultimate family trip with my boyfriend’s family for his Grandad’s 90th birthday. He hired a huge villa on the Amalfi Coast overlooking Mount Vesuvius which was the definition of luxury. Not only did we consume unbelievably delicious food there but we also went on various day trips including a stunning hike and a trip to Pompeii. One of the highlights of this holiday was a boat trip around Capri. The colour of the water was mesmerising.
Another epic family trip, but with my family this time, to the stunning mountainous Switzerland. We stayed in Interlaken and each day was filled with hiking and glorious views. Words cannot express how much of a fairytale Lauterbrunnen felt like. There were certainly no shortage of photo spots. Each view point and waterfall around Interlaken seemed more stunning than the last. On the final day I went paragliding which was INCREDIBLE. I actually preferred it to skydiving.
This was my first solo, SOLO trip. I’ve been away on my own before but I’ve always joined a volunteer group or tour. This time, it was just me and I loved my first solo experience, despite my lack of direction. This was my second visit to Singapore so I knew I would feel safe there and I stayed in a nice hotel to treat myself. I spent my first day wandering through the orchid gardens and in the evening I went to the famous super tree light show- the Garden Rhapsody.
I can’t believe I haven’t posted a blog about Borneo yet! I went in the summer and 2018 is nearly over now. It was such a fantastic with trip and I have so much to share with you including volunteering with orangutans, spending 5 days in the rainforest and bamboo rafting through the jungle. Another highlight of Borneo was staying in Bako National Park where we saw wild proboscis monkeys (the ones with the big noses). Here we also went on a night walk where we saw countless spiders, frogs and even two flying lemurs.
Peak District, England, Take 1
When I got back from Borneo, Mike and I wanted some time away together so we booked a last minute trip to the Peak District. Here, we hiked Mam Tor, got lost on the way back but found some amazing views because of it. On our second day we visited Chatsworth House which was glorious inside but unfortunately, due to the terrible weather, we didn’t get to see much of the gardens.
My yearly trip with my bestie, Lani (check out her Youtube). We stayed near the mountain town, Fussen. Our apartment was a short walk up the mountain from Lake Hopfensee which we sauntered the whole perimeter of one morning. My favourite thing we did in Germany, and the main reason we booked the trip, was to visit to Neuschwanstein Castle. This was the castle which Cinderlla’s castle was based on. It was slightly disappointing from the front due to the amount of construction being completed but when we walked around to the viewpoint above I was breathtaken. St Mary’s Bridge was closed but we still managed to find some gorgeous views of the castle. Read my post about it here.
Peak District, England, Take 2
We visited Peak District again for my boyfriend’s mum’s birthday. We stayed in Bakewell, home of the bakewell tart and saw the Remembrance Day parade there. We got a chance to visit Chatsworth House again and this time the house was decorated for Christmas. The theme this year was, wait for it, Disney! (Watch my Youtube of the event here). We also got a chance to explore the gardens which were far bigger than I expected. The colours of autumn made the gardens appear so colourful and beautiful.
Donna Nook, England
Each year, my boyfriend and I head up to Donna Nook to see the seals. Late November is the best time to visit because that’s when thousands of seals give birth to pups. We were there for three days this time and went to see the seals each day. We also visited Mablethorpe Seal Sanctuary to see where some rescued seals had been taken. On our final day visiting the seals, we saw the most heartbreaking but magical thing, a seal being rescued. I will write a post about this soon so stay posted! We visited some National Trust properties on the way back including Tattershall Castle and Belton House where we saw wild deer.
For Mike’s birthday, I surprised him with a trip away to Winchester to visit the Christmas markets. We stayed in the most beautiful b&b called Hannah’s. The first day we were gifted once again with terrible weather. We managed to push our way through the wind and the rain around the Christmas markets briefly and then headed to the mill where we were welcomed with mulled wine and mince pies. Our second day was much kinder to us; it was dry and sunny the whole day. We went back to the Christmas markets and got a chance to shop properly.
Loch Lomond, Scotland
As I am finishing this post, I’m currently in Scotland. For the rest of the trip we’ll complete more hiking, hopefully visit some casltes and will also be spending Hogmany (2018 New Year’s Eve) here. Keep an eye on my Instagram for updates!
I’m not sure if I’ll be able to fit in as many trips as 2018 but I’m certainly going to try! First of all I have the rest of my Scotland trip and then on the way back we’ll be stopping in the Yorkshire Dales. In April, my mum and I have booked a yoga and meditation retreat. I’ve never done anything like this before so I’m intrigued! Another trip I have booked for next year is Namibia. I’m hoping to see lots of wild animals so fingers crossed!
Tell me in the comments about your travels in 2018 and what are your plans for next year?