Is it to late to reminisce? Am I still allowed to talk about 2017 even though Februari is already coming to an end?
In my defence: untill now I actually skipped the ‘another year over’ part and just woke up in a brand new 2018. After celebrating New Years Eve like every kick-ass 23 year old is supposed to do: partying with grandma. I slept around 12:30 – woke up around 8:00.
However, all stories about New Years Eve aside (since it actually really is too late to still be talking about that), I AM going to talk about 2017 in this article.
It’s been busy guys, not gonna lie. You probably noticed, seeing that the last article I posted was somewhere around October.
It’s funny actually, that I took this unintended break from blogging. I actually wrote about how nice it was to be offline and to relax and return back to the real world all zen in one of my ‘last’ articles last year. I wrote about that in this article, after returning from an eye-opening week of surf and yoga in Portugal. I know, hipster as I am. However, even though I wrote I was ready to get back in the ‘real world’ – I guess I never did.
I really wanted to get back to blogging. I promise. However, right after returning from my vacation (or, no – from probably the most active trip I ever took), I got a promotion – which ment work, work, work. In between work, work, work, I found a new flat and moved houses, cursed over Ikea furniture and too narrow staircases, and patted myself on the back for finally understanding Ikea manuals.
In between all the hectic days, I did found the time to travel a bit though. I actually managed to travel quite a lot – in 2017. Countries like the States, Iceland, Portugal, Luxembourg, France, Germany and the States again. I actually loved all my travels from 2017 – but of course, there are always a couple ones that stand out.. so let’s cut to the chase: here are my (delayed) travel favorites from 2017.
Surfing in Cascais
Hell yes – this trip definitely won. During the summer of 2017 I visited Cascais in Portugal (close to Lisbon which – surprise – I also visited) to join a surf and yoga retreat. Mornings at the beach and listening to the waves while breathing iiiin and ooouuut defined my waking up scenario. Driving up to the beach, struggling to get into a wetsuit, and running into the water trying to catch every wave that I could defined my mornings. Walking around in the lovely village of Cascais, laughing with my hipster yoga buddies, doing some more yoga defined my afternoons and trying out the restaurant we’ve heard about explained my nights.
This trip was one of my favorite travels ever. I’ve learned to love surfing, I’ve learned to love the surroundings of Cascais, but most importantly: I learned to live in the moment. Only enjoying the company and the atmosphere around me.
Driving through Iceland
I can’t even remember how many years Iceland was #1 on top of my bucket list. Iceland looked like a dream – it didn’t disappoint in real life. With the help of WOW Air and SADcars my trip to Iceland changed into a perfect one. In the six days that we visited the country of snow, waterfalls and ponies we drove around the Ring Road visiting every corner of the island, chasing landscapes, viewpoints and breathtaking moments.
I spotted whales, watched over endless miles of land, drove through snow, slept in middle of nowhere and laughed. Iceland; you were pretty great.
L’amour en France
Only a four hour car drive removed from me, and I still never visited it before. Even though Strasbourg, Colmar and the entire Alsace region had been on my must-visit-list for quite some time, I never got the chance to visit. It seems like the gems closest to home are the easiest ones to forget. Right after Summer I dragged my boyfriend to the Alsace region. Funny actually, since I told him we would go to Berlin, and surprised him by navigating southwards. WHO knew I could be spontaneous.
Yeah, I’m fun like that.
For the course of a long weekend we drove around the Alsace region, meaning we saw a lot of vineyards, mountain views (or.. hills), cute villages with even more cute houses, and beautiful local gems. We ate, laughed, tasted the wine and strolled around the fairytale-like sceneries. A perfect weekend I would relive in an instant – only now I want to visit during Christmas.. that would be magical!
Visiting Dusseldorf seems like ages ago now – however if I remember correctly; that was almost one year ago. At the beginning of last year I joined a presstrip to Dusseldorf together with a couple of other bloggers to attend the official ‘start’ of the countdown to the Tour The France AND Nacht der Museen. Next to the fact that I actually had a lot of fun on this presstrip and met a great pair of new travelbloggers, Dusseldorf actually really surprised me.
Fact: Dusseldorf is about an hour drive away from me, as I live quite close to the German border. However I never actually thought about visiting Dusseldorf for another reason than for the airport – to get the hell out. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why I liked the city so much: because it positively surprised me in more ways than I could imagine. Dusseldorf is a German city as you’d expect it to be though: it has an old city center with a lot of pubs and bars – with many, many types of beer. Surrounding the old city you’ll find a modern, high-tech center with big multinationals and great architecture. This, together with the unique, artsy, international vibe that lingers around Dusseldorf will make for a weekend you’ll always remember. Or, perhaps, you won’t. Depending on whether you like the beer or not.
Returning to the urban jungle of the world
Inside I’m crying when trying to remember which year I visited New York for the first time. I know I’m not one to complain, but I feel really old when realizing that my roadtrip around the West Coast of the USA is over 5 years ago. I remember it like yesterday though – let’s hold on to that thought then.
At the beginning of last year, after thinking that I deserved an expensive airfare, I decided I wanted to go to New York. When telling my plans to a friend of mine she decided she wanted to come along and BOOM in the course of two days we booked a trip to the Big Apple.
6 months later we flew to New York for eight days (returning only a day before my 23rd birthday)!
Saying hello to the city that I fell in love with when I was a teen felt good. Gosh how I missed strolling through Central Park, shopping on Fifth and greeting all the tall skyscrapers that I will never in a million years see in my hometown. While it was cold, it was a perfect trip to this crazy, hectic, urban jungle.
Now I want to go back again!