Let’s just face it: it has been a while since I made an appearance on my blog!
It has been a busy 12 months since I opened my first business and life certainly has a way of getting away from you when reality kicks in (or perhaps more accurately, takes over!)
The real world has been fun for sure, but its time to hit the road again. I’m restless.
This past week I’ve been skimming the internet for ideas on where to go next – somewhere new, exciting, challenging and out of the ordinary. And yet I keep finding myself circling back to places I loved so much that I want to go back. These are places I feel I didn’t spend enough time and places I often think back to and mentally plan a trip there.
So its time to put these plans into reality with the 20 places I loved so much I want to go back (and am in the process of booking a ticket to one of them!!!)
From the minute I stepped out of the black cab in the city of Edinburgh I knew this was going to be a special place for me. You know those places that capture you with a feeling you can’t quite put your finger on? This was one of them. Journeying through the Scottish Highlands is hands down one of the most memorable trips I have taken and I loved it so much that I swore to return before I was even half way through my trip!
Read more: The Top 10 Places to Visit in Scotland
Right next door but with its own distinct personality is my second most favourite place to return to – Ireland. The day I arrived in Dublin it was raining sporadically, which I would soon learn to appreciate as the norm here in one of the greenest places on earth. If you enjoy castles, mystique and mystery, then you will love Ireland. A self-drive itinerary is undeniably the best way to explore the country, combined with coastal hikes, bike rides through the countryside and exploring small towns on foot.
My time in Argentina was short, to say the least. After just two days in Buenos Aires, I made my way to Iguassu Falls on the border between Argentina and Brazil, quickly passing through the country with not nearly enough time to enjoy the colourful Latin culture. If you fancy dancing, great wine and friendly locals, then this is just the beginning of your Argentinian experience. I look forward to returning with a few weeks to explore the country at great length, especially for a visit to the Argentinian side of Patagonia!
4. The French Countryside
Exploring the French Countryside and its many little villages would have to be my idea of heaven. Last year I ticked another region of my never-ending French bucketlist; Alsace, located on the border of France and Germany. The Alsace region is the epitome of quintessential French countryside; complete with vineyards, villages, and bike routes to travel between them.
Still to go on my list: Dinan (Brittany), Perouges (Lyon), Lourmarin (Aix-en-Provence) and the South of France.
Read more: The Prettiest Town in France
5. South Australia
If you were to ask me where my top 5 favourite trips took place, South Australia would be one of them. Home to the untouched beauty of Kangaroo Island and the rolling hills of the Barossa Valley, this region of Australia is home to some of the most beautiful photo opportunities you will ever experience (and boy did I pinch myself a few times!) You’ll need at least a week to explore, though if you prefer to take it slow give yourself a week on the mainland and a week on Kangaroo Island (oh yes and for my foreign friends, there are kangaroos galore!)
You might have noticed by now that I love the countryside landscapes of the United Kingdom for its untouched beauty, raw coastlines and the pub culture in small towns that makes you feel at home anywhere. Wales is the perfect excuse for a road trip and this is undoubtedly the best way to see the country as the places worth visiting are often remote. Next time I’ll be heading further North, welcoming bad weather as it adds to the mystique!
Read more: Visiting the South of Wales
Its no secret that I love the East of Europe and I have found over the years that the further East I venture, the more memorable the adventure. Sure, the inconvenience of delayed trains and ever-changing travel plans is a bit painful at times, but this just adds to the great stories you take with you long after you’ve left!
Read more: 8 Places You Must Visit in Romania
8. St Petersburg, Russia
Speaking of Eastern adventures – you can’t go past a trip to Russia! After studying Russian History at Univeristy I became (slightly) obsessed with the history and evolution of Russia. On my first visit to the country I was limited on time, visiting only Moscow and St Petersburg. On my next visit I’d love to visit smaller cities and villages between the two cities, and spend more time in both the capital and former capital.
Read more: A Quick Guide to St Petersburg, Russia
9. Arizona, USA
My adventures in the United States have never failed me, but none impressed me more than the Southwest state of Arizona. For our weeklong adventure we travelled from Phoenix to the tip of the state, even venturing briefly in to Utah before making our way back toward Los Angeles to complete our trip. Some of the highlights included Sedona, the Grand Canyon and the incredible landscapes in the North (pictured: Horseshoe Bend). I look forward to returning with more time to enjoy hiking and climbing, particularly in the town and surrounds of Sedona, one of the prettiest landscapes I have ever encountered.
Read more: 10 Reasons to Visit Arizona
10. Tanzania, East Africa
Hold all your travel plans and put a visit to East Africa at the top of your list – I truly believe there is nothing that compares to a safari experience! One of the things I loved most about Tanzania was experiencing the Great Migration – an experience you would be forgiven for thinking only happens on National Geographic.
Read More: Glamping in Tanzania
11. Bosnia & Herzegovina
A country that I never imagined I would visit and only did so after pointing it out on a map turned out to be one of my favourite adventures yet. Bosnia & Herzegovina isn’t usually the top on a traveller’s list for European adventures, but I promise you these are the types of trips I have often enjoyed most. I spent 7 days exploring Bosnia and it wasn’t nearly enough!
Read More: 10 Reasons to Visit Bosnia & Herzegovina
For a really long time I wanted to visit Norway, but everyone I spoke to about it said the same thing that scared me more than anything: “it is SO expensive”. I knew there had to be a way to experience Norway without spending my entire travel fund, so I booked a fjords cruise that would allow me to experience coastal towns without the expense of a $40 burger for lunch (the pros of a cruise ship – unlimited buffets!) However all this trip did was make me crave more – so I look forward to returning to Norway and experiencing the hiking landscapes that I inevitably missed out on by skimming the surface with a cruise!
Read More: My First Time Cruising Norway
13. Tahiti, French Polynesia
My visit to Tahiti earlier this year was overcast by quite the shadow: a storm that prevented the sun from breaking through for the whole week I visited. Although I made the most of my trip and still enjoyed French Polynesia at great length, I can’t help but to wonder how more enjoyable paradise would be in the daylight – ha! One aspect of Tahiti that was unspoiled by the weather was the incredible French cuisine – some of it even more memorable than France!
14. Sri Lanka
I can hardly say I have visited Sri Lanka after a one-day stopover en route to the Maldives, but it was a memorable day that gave me a taste of what is on offer. With such a rapidly growing tourism market I’d like to visit sooner rather than later, so I’ll have Sri Lanka at the top of my list for 2018 (and you should too!)
Read More: Where to Honeymoon in 2016
15. New Zealand
There’s absolutely no way I won’t be back to New Zealand in 2018, a promise of which I have already made to myself before the new year has even arrived! The South Island captured my heart on my short 4-day visit last year and it has since been at the top of my list to return. On my next visit (June of 2018) I plan to spend 7 days exploring in a combi van, followed by 7 days skiing… the dream!
Read More: Postcards from New Zealand
16. Paris, France
Did you really think I would write a list of places I love most without including my annual escape to Paris!? With an undying love for this city and French pastries, I do not think I will ever stop travelling to Paris. The dream would be to rent an apartment for a few months, nestle myself on my balcony and stuff myself with croissants on the daily. A girl can dream, right!?
Read More: Paris in the Spring
Until I arrived in Slovenia I had absolutely no idea of what I had been missing out on. This began with my stopover in Ljubljana (the capital) and lasted long into the foothills of some of the most impressive scenery in all of Europe. When I return I plan to hike, bike, climb and adventure my way around the scenery in any way I can.
18. Norfolk Island, Australia
I’ve said it from the get go: Norfolk Island is the best kept secret in Australia. So much so, that I never knew it existed until I arrived, despite being an Aussie myself!
Read More: Australia’s Best Kept Secret: Norfolk Island
I’m no more impartial to a European summer than the rest of us and no place has impressed me more than Malta. This island country between the coast of Sicily and Northern Africa offers sun, clear waters, and so much history to sink your teeth into that you’ll never be short of an activity or two.
Read More: Cruising with Seabourn
20. Positano, Italy
A self-confessed hopeless romantic, it was love at first sight when I stepped off the bus in Positano and saw the postcard-worthy view for the first time. As one of the most iconic locations in Italy (though to be fair isn’t everywhere iconic in Italy!?), the Amalfi Coast is a once-in-a-lifetime location to visit, though if I had it my way I’d visit at least twice!
Read More: A Quick Guide to Positano