2018 Travel Highlights

2018 has been an amazing year of travelling for me. I was no longer a poor student, or saving up for a house – so I went a bit nuts when it came to booking holidays.

David groans when I tell him another place I’m adding to the list, but in my defence, my job is quite literally to research holidays for people all day, every day, so booking a few of my own is just an occupational hazard.

I’ve been so lucky this year travelling to Mexico, Saint Lucia, Flanders, Germany, Prague and New York but I do want to slow down my travel habits for 2019 as this year was quite full on. I only have two booked so far (Poland in a couple of weeks and Skiathos in June), but we will see how long that lasts for!

For now, here is a list of my 2018 travel highlights – enjoy!

Mexico

Back in the spring, I was very fortunate enough to be invited to a friend’s wedding – IN MEXICO. What a dream. We stayed in Mexico for 11 nights at the luxurious Azul Fives resort in Playa Del Carman.

We drank far too many cocktails, relaxed on the beach, ate our bodyweight in guacamole, explored ancient cenotes, drove 4x4s in the jungle, swam with tropical fish and visited a beautiful paradise island. It was jam packed, adventurous and ever so luxurious.

For everything that you need to know about visiting Mexico read here.

Saint Lucia

As a travel agent, I was very lucky to travel to Saint Lucia as part of work. Tourism boards host agents, showing off the best parts of their country in order for us agents to sell it better to our clients. They are known as FAM trips or ‘educationals’ and my goodness landing Saint Lucia for my first FAM was an absolute dream.

We visited out of season (June), so it did rain most days, but as it was a work trip we didn’t get the chance to do a lot of sunbathing anyway. Our days mainly consisted of hotel visits but in the afternoon and then fun excursions in the afternoon which included a Segway Tour, Rainforest Canopy Ride, Sea Helmet Trek and Sunset Catamaran Cruise.

The whole experience was incredible and I am so lucky to have been given the opportunity to visit Saint Lucia on a *paid* work trip. Its a country with such breathtaking natural beauty and I’d go back on my own holiday in a heartbeat!

Read my guide to Saint Lucia here.

Flanders

In September, we hopped on the Eurostar for a short-break to Flanders, basing ourselves in Lille and visiting Brussels for the day.

In my guide to Flanders, I spoke about how it wasn’t my favourite city break I’ve ever been on, finding Lille a bit small to spend a full three days in. In hindsight, we should have got the Eurostar to Brussels and based ourselves there and gone to Lille for the day instead.

Nevertheless, Flanders itself was absolutely beautiful, the architecture and dessert (oh the dessert!) being the highlights for me.

Read all about my weekend in Flanders here.

The Black Forest

Back in 2017, we road tripped in Bavaria and it was breathtakingly beautiful. I was desperate to visit more of Germany, so after a recommendation, we opted to visit The Black Forest for a weekend in early October.

October was such a wonderful month to visit The Black Forest, with is still being lovely and warm but the trees turning the most magnificent shades of reds, oranges and yellows. We stayed in a lovely little wooden chalet in the countryside and hired a car to explore the surrounding areas. We visited the fairy-tale villages of Colmar and Eguisheim which is located in Alsace (a Germanic region of France) and also explored Freiburg, Lake Titisee and Schauinsland. 

For my recommendations of where you should visit in The Black Forest read here. 

Prague

Desperate to squeeze in one more city break before the end of the year, I did a last minute booking to Prague for November. We went mid-week, in part because I wanted to avoid the crowds of the weekend and also because the flights were far cheaper. I’ve heard Prague can get soooo busy over the weekend so a mid-week break may be a better option.

Prague is one of the most beautiful European cities I have visited and due to us travelling in November, it was bloody freezing too! After a couple of city breaks in a short time, we took Prague at our own pace which was wonderful. We didn’t rush around the tick off all the touristy things, instead, we took strolls around the old town, stopped off in restaurants to people watch and marvelled at the views from new town.

Prague is a city that I think suits everyone – it’s beautiful, has an interesting history, lots of landmarks and museums and best of all very affordable to visit!

Read all about my mid-week Prague getaway here.

New York 

Woah. What a way to end a fantastic year; the city at the top of my travel wishlist. At the beginning of December, me and my mum visited New York, a trip that had been planned for over a year and a half. And New York certainly didn’t disappoint.

Visiting New York at Christmas seemed like the best time to capture the magic of our first visit and it was such an incredibly festive experience; Rockafella tree, Saks Christmas display, Byrant Park and The Rockettes at Radio City all got us in the Christmassy mood.

We crammed so much into our first visit; One World Observatory, 9/11 Memorial, Top of the Rock, Central Park, Brooklyn Bridge, but I am desperate to return as there was so much that we just didn’t have time for. I want to explore beyond Manhatten, go to a sports game and have more time in trendy neighbourhoods such as Soho and Chelsea. I’m trying to convince David to go (he hates cities), but I think I’ll be able to persuade him – New York is fabulous. 

Read my New York Travel Diary here.

2018 has been an incredible year of travel highlights and I feel so lucky to be able to have made so many amazing memories. Tell me what are your travel highlights from the past year? Have you been to any of the same places on my list?

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