As we’re coming close to the end of another year (and a decade, o my god!), it’s time to draw up the balance. From fresh snow on top of the Alps to countless palm trees on the beach, from long-haul flights to roadtrips, this is my year in travel.
January – March
The year started off with a lovely active, family holiday. We drove down to the Alps for a week of skiing. More specifically, we stayed in Saalbach-Hinterglemm, a well-known ski resort in Austria. Imagine endless slopes, loads of fresh snow and cozy ski huts. In the evening there is also enough entertainment in town, such as snow tubing, sledding and apres-ski at the Goaßstall. Hinterglemm is a great winter sports destination for young and old.
April – June
In April, we planned our next family visit to Ireland. During this trip we decided to climb Croagh Patrick – Ireland’s holy mountain, known for its yearly pilgrimage on the last Sunday in July. It was a lovely, sunny day when we started our hike to the top of the 764 meter mountain. While it is a heavy hike, the views along the way and on the top are totally worth it. Make sure to wear good hiking shoes (as the last bit of the climb is rocky and quite steep) and don’t forget to bring water and snacks.
In May, we went on our first all-inclusive holiday with destination Mexico. We were a little hesitant for this type of holiday at first, but we just wanted a holiday where we didn’t need to plan or think too much – which is how we ended up on a beautiful resort in Playa del Carmen. Whereas we absolutely loved doing nothing (n-o-t-h-i-n-g) at all for the first few days, we also realized we wanted to go out and explore Mexico. We took the ferry to Isla Cozumel and rented a scooter to go around the island – a tropical paradise in the Caribbean Sea.
July – September
While I went on a birthday trip to Valencia last year, I ended up going back to this Spanish city on a very special Saturday morning in August. It wasn’t like any other trip I had done so far; I was invited to join the pilots in the cockpit of a Boeing 737-800 (wow!). After being all set up for the flight – including my own headset to follow air traffic control communication, it was time for take-off. From fuel calculations to air navigation, from witnessing automatic pilot to manual touch down. It was a once in a lifetime experience and I enjoyed every single minute of it.
As we are making it a tradition to go somewhere for my birthday each year, 2019 had to follow as well. For my 25th birthday this year we went to the Algarve. This region in the south of Portugal is famous for its golden beaches and sensational cliffs. Plus, it has about 300 days of sunshine and little rainfall a year, making it the perfect destination to get that last bit of European summer. We stayed in and around Lagos during our trip and had a great time. From catching waves on a surfboard to setting foot at Europe’s most south-western point; there is something for everybody in the Algarve.
October – December
In November, we went on a trip a little closer to home – to Bruges, Belgium. Belgium is known for its chocolate, waffles, fries and beer; which also summarizes our trip to Bruges in November. We went to many (many!) chocolate stores, had THE best waffle in town, went to see the famous Beer Wall and finished the day with some fries before heading back home. If I have the recommend one thing not to miss out on in Bruges, it is the House of Waffles. I dare you to try their savoury waffles!
As like the last couple of years, we also end 2019 in Ireland. This time for a very special occasion; as I will attend my first Irish wedding. But Ireland is a great destination for everyone to spend their New Year’s Eve. While you should not expect any fireworks (it is not allowed), you will find loads of people ready to party all night. Head to one of the many pubs and enjoy the live music on this special evening. Make sure to spend a few extra days in Ireland to visit the Guiness Storehouse or Jameson distillery in Dublin, experience the beautiful city of Galway and see the impressive Cliffs of Moher.
This concludes my year in travel. Cheers to another year (and decade) of life changing and amazing travels. Happy 2020!