I've made no secret of my love of travelling on this space of mine over the last 4+ years (I probably talk about it too much actually...). Travel is just something I need to do, and I haven't done nearly enough of it yet! This past year wasn't the best year for me when it comes to travelling and exploring new places, but I don't know if anything will ever top Vegas/NYC/Mexico all within the same year.
2016 was the first time in 8 years that I didn't make it to Vegas (gasp!). I haven't even been on a plane in over a year and a half since I last went to Vegas to celebrate my sisters Dirty Thirty in July 2015. I did, however, get to cross a new state off my list when MN and I took a day trip to Wisconsin, I was introduced to the gorgeous Duluth, MN area, I travelled to the Twin Cities 7 different times, and I even got to take in some bird watching in Kansas City, Missouri. Okay, now that I have it all written out there I guess 2016 wasn't so bad when it comes to travel!
My biggest 'problem', when it comes to travelling, as I've mentioned before, is that I tend to fall in love with each new place I travel to and then all I want to do is revisit the same places over and over and over again because one trip is just never enough.
I've been lucky enough in my almost 30 years of existence to get to travel to some really awesome places. Today I'm sharing a little bit about some of my favourite destinations
Ten Places I've Travelled...
San Antonio, Texas
The River Walk is one of my favourite places that I've ever been - there's just so much to see/do! Having a beer and eating peanuts and throwing the shells on the floor at Durty Nelly's is a must and so is touring The Alamo. I've also been to New Braunfels (where my aunt and uncle live and most time in Texas is spent) and to Corpus Christi where I put my feet in the Gulf of Mexico for the first time. Collecting sand dollars on the beach is one of my best memories from my first trip to Texas - I still have some of them! Floating down the Guadulupe River is also one of my favourite memories ever. I've road tripped to Texas three times now but I'm hoping for many more trips that way. I was supposed to go last August but my brother and sister found out they were expecting so that trip was cancelled and instead my sister and I road tripped to Kansas City, Missouri at the very last minute to take in some bird watching. I will make it back to Texas one day though - my favourite restaurant of all time is there after all!
Kansas City, Missouri
My sister and I spent less than 24 hours actually in Kansas City last August but we accomplished exactly what we went there for - to do some bird watching at Kauffman Stadium. We took in two games of the Royals vs Blue Jays series (my sister's first ever MLB games) and I got to cross Kauffman Stadium off my list of stadiums to visit. We also got to buy liquour in Target (a first for us) and had Chick-fil-A for the first (but not last!) time - some highlights of our whirlwind road trip aside from the baseball games. Sleeping in my SUV in a Wal Mart parking lot in Fargo, ND is up there too...
When I was 15 and in Grade 10 I went on an EF Tour that took me through Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Italy. Venice was probably my favourite of all of the places we visited. There were so many different shops and alleyways, I got lost for hours with my friends but every turn we took there was something new and exciting to see. I ate gelato every single chance I got but with all the walking I did it was justified! A gondola ride in Venice should be on everybody's bucket list and watching a glass blowing demonstration was pretty neat. I'm not a huge fan of birds but standing in the middle of St Marks Square and feeding pigeons as they perched on my shoulder and in the palm of my hand was such an awesome experience. I also spent time in Verona and visited Juliet's balcony, which was pretty interesting for this small town girl. Italy was also the place where my friends and I were chased down the beach by men pretending to shoot at us but all the fun that was had and the memories made outweighs that one negative thing.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Vegas is my favourite 'fun' destination - its perfect for a girls weekend, stag/stagette, celebrating a birthday, etc. Plus its relatively inexpensive to travel to so its the perfect long weekend getaway. I've pretty much lost count of how many times I've been to Vegas now but I don't think I will ever get sick of it. A few years back I wrote my own Guide to Sin City and though a lot of it has changed now there's still quite a few of my favourite things included in there. I'm going back this Summer to celebrate my own Dirty Thirty and I'm already dreaming about Amaretto Pineapples from Fat Tuesdays and Volcano Nachos from Margaritaville. Mmmmmm...
My friend Scooby and I flew to Harrisburg, PA in August 2012 to visit Mri, Scooby's friend that was doing her medical residency at a hospital in Harrisburg. We were gone for 10 days but three of those days were spent in NYC (Scooby and I took the Amtrak train from Harrisburg to NYC - Mri had to work so she got left behind). Most of our days in Harrisburg were spent inside Mri's apartment in the air conditioning - I didn't realize how humid it would be until we were there! We also spent a night out for Mri's birthday with a bunch of her PA friends - we had supper at Benihanas' (my first time!) and then went out to a club afterwards, where guns were pulled out during a fight on the main floor while we were on the top floor of the club - something this small town girl never expected! We also took a day trip to Hershey and toured Hershey's Chocolate World and went to Hersheypark (not recommended when you're hungover af...). Tons of shopping was done both in Harrisburg and at the outlets in Hershey and it was also the trip where Scooby got her nickname!
New York City, New York
I spent through glorious days in NYC in August 2012 and I completely fell in LOVE with the city. I was actually only in NYC for two nights and less than 72 hours but my friend and I fit in as much tourist-y things as possible. We went to the top of the Empire State Building, spent time in Central Park exploring the zoo, had breakfast at outside Tiffany's, enjoyed a delicious muffin from Magnolia Bakery, ate a hot dog on the steps of the Met, took a ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, and saw Chicago on Broadway - just to name a few things. It was definitely a trip to remember and I cannot wait until the day I make it back to NYC
Ixtapa and Zihuatenejo, Mexico
One of my oldest friends got married in Ixtapa at the Las Brisas Resort in December 2012. Every room has an ocean view, the resort has its own private beach, and the staff were SO friendly - I will definitely be making it back to this resort one day. This trip had many firsts - I went snorkelling for the first time, swam in the ocean for the first time ever, and even tried duck for the first - and only- time (not good, y'all. Not good). I was also mistaken for a local many, many times during our time in town - considering I don't speak a lick of Spanish it was pretty comical.
My cousin got married in Jasper in 2007 at the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge. I was in college in Medicine Hat at the time so my parents, along with my brother and future SIL (my sister stayed behind because the day of the wedding was Rae's 1st birthday), picked me up on the way. The scenery on the way to Jasper is just breathtaking - if you ever plan on visiting Canada then Jasper is a great destination! We didn't have much time to explore Jasper because of the wedding festivities but what we did see was just ah-mazing. I absolutely need to make it back there one day. Most of my family rode up the Canadian Rockies in the Jasper Skytram (even my Granny!) the day after the wedding which was an awesome experience (though I'd recommend doing it when you're not extremely hungover... haha). My family stayed at the cutest little cabins while we were there - they had a full kitchen area so would be perfect for a longer stay! On the way home we went towards Banff and Lake Louise instead of heading back through Edmonton - the views were so gorgeous! This area is an absolute must see
Rothenburg is a town straight out of a fairytale and was the first destination of my Europe Trip after my flight landed in Frankfurt. There's a wall that surrounds the whole town and everything about it is so medieval - I felt like I was transported back into the olden days. The town was a little confusing to navigate, even though its pretty tiny, and our tour guide had given us a strict time to be back at the bus... that time came and went and a group of kids plus one of the chaperones were still missing. I think we waited almost an hour for them to find their way out of the town and to our bus (thank goodness it wasn't me because I would've had an anxiety attack thinking our bus left without me on it). I can't believe I even remember that considering its almost been 15(!) years. I need to make it back to Europe asap... if only to upgrade all my pictures since all of mine were taken on disposable cameras and are terrible quality
Switzerland was absolutely breathtaking - every single part of it that I saw was so beautiful. Everything about it was just so different from SK. We took a boat tour around the Lucerne area and the town was another area where I felt like I had been transported back in time. We also made a stop at Rhine Falls, Europe's largest waterfall. I'm sure almost 30 year old me would be so much more appreciative of the beauty of all these things than 15 year old me was!
I didn't include much of Canada, besides Jasper, since I live here and don't really think of it as 'travel' and also didn't include the Twin Cities since I'm there all.the.time. now. Each year I just want this list to keep growing and growing - there's so much more I want to see!
"I haven't been everywhere, but it's on my list" - Susan Sontag
Make sure to stop back next Tuesday to see the next 10 places I want to visit!