2019 roundup!

by Charlie - Where Charlie Wanders
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2019 roundup!

This 2019 roundup post might be slightly late in coming out, but it has been a slightly mad few weeks and 2019 was such a great year of travel for me, I couldn’t not write one. Even though I am aware how few people actually read these posts – I still love to write them.

I started 2019 with very few vague travel plans, and thought I would be travelling a lot for work. Those plans quickly changed, but it meant I got to see some of the most amazing places in the world! So without any more delay – here is my 2019 roundup: the year of travel.

January

I spent the very first day of 2019 in Iceland. New Year’s Eve was passed standing on a rooftop being amazed by the riot of fireworks that were exploding over Reykjavik. I spent a chilled day with my best friend, before catching my first flight of the year. Home.

10 days later I headed to Marrakech for work, while I didn’t get to see much of the city – it did remind me how much I enjoy this place. A return is definitely needed! I had an evening in the souks, and ate in one of my favourite restaurants, Nomad.

image of the souks in Marrakech


Surviving the souks in Marrakech, Morocco


February

February was a much more chilled month. I had actually booked some flights to Poland, but as I knew I had a hectic March ahead of me, I made the decision not to go for financial reasons. Instead I visited my friend in the Cotswolds and hung out in Norfolk. It was a very lovely month!

March

March – what a month! This is where the 2019 roundup gets interesting.

Due to some circumstances with work, I was offered flights to Chile. They had previously booked these for me, but I was no longer required on the event. So they asked if I wanted to use them. Answer? Hell, yes! So with about 10 days notice, I headed off to Chile for a week.

It was a whirlwind trip, and with the limited time I had there it meant I didn’t get to visit Patagonia or Atacama but instead forced me to visit some slightly less common Chilean locations. Fantastic! I explored Santiago and discovered it is definitely a city worth spending some time in. Then I headed to Valparaiso which I now rate as one of my favourite places in the world! I also spent a night at Matzanas on the coast, and stopped off a Vina del Mar.

It was an epic week, and if you’re interesting make sure you check out my post on a 1 week Chile itinerary!

image of Valparaiso in Chile part of the 2019 roundup

After being back home for a week, I then headed off skiing to Les Gets in the French Alps to celebrate my 30th birthday with my family. It was a pretty great way to mark the turning of a decade! I love skiing and go every year. There is nothing like the feeling of flying down a slope, with the beautiful alpine scenery surrounding!

Finally, I visited Porto – my first trip to Portugal! It was a weekend break with a friend, to further continue the birthday celebrations. Such a great city, and I highly recommend for a weekend away!

image of Douro river in Porto, part of the 2019 roundup

 


14 things to do in Porto


April & May

These months marked some of the biggest bucket list ticks of my travel life! In April I flew to Egypt to start a 2 and a half week trip through Egypt and Jordan. I had had this trip booked and planned for a while, so it was so exciting for it to finally be happening!

image of the Pyramids of Giza a 2019 roundup highlight

The trip started with a visit to the Pyramids, and I honestly couldn’t believe I was there! The next few days were the most amazing, with visit to temples and a trip down the Nile on a felucca. Egypt totally exceeded my expectations and I completely fell in love. Now it is definitely ranked as one of my favourite countries I have visited.


For plenty of Egypt posts take a look here: EGYPT


Following on from Egypt, I flew to Jordan. A country I had longed to visit for ever. Amman was a surprise – I really enjoyed the city. Petra and Wadi Rum were two of the best days of my life. But, I have to be honest here, I didn’t feel I connected with the country as I thought I would. Maybe it was visiting having just fallen in love with Egypt. I am not sure. I can’t put my finger on it – I just didn’t fall in love. However, Petra and Wadi Rum are still two of the most incredible places.

Image of Petra in Jordan

June

In June I headed to Northern Italy, for my very first Traverse conference. Traverse is a conference created for travel bloggers and it was so lovely to be surrounded by people from this community.

I headed to Italy a little early, and spent a night in Verona and then a night at Lake Garda. Then headed to Trento, the location of the conference. Verona was a delight, the Lake beautiful and Trento a really undiscovered part of Italy which I now highly recommend!

image of streets of Verona part of 2019 roundup

It was lovely to be back in Italy after so many years, and I really want to visit more of the country. Italian food is some of my absolute favourite!

July

July marked the annual family holiday to North Norfolk. Such a great part of the year. A few days of pubs, walks, the sea, family, friends and fish and chips. It is the relaxing summer recharge that is always needed. While it seems crazy to go on holiday where I live, I cannot recommend enough!

image of Blakeney in North Norfolk


The Ultimate Staycation- North Norfolk


August

August, I headed back to Menorca for a few days to stay at our house. This little island has a place in my heart, and it is so nice to return here time and time again. It will never get old! Lots of tapas, paella, wine and sun. I took my friend along this time, and it was lovely to show her the island.

image of Es Castell in Menorca, Spain

September

I had to visit Scotland for work, and decided take day off when I was there to visit the Glenfinnan Viaduct – Harry Potter fan over here! While the scenery was spectacular, I did not get to see the train as it broke down! Absolutely devastating. Still it was lovely to spend some time in the Highlands.

image of the Glenfinnan Viaduct, Scotland

This month marked another trip I had been dying to take for such a long time. A trip to New England, USA in the fall. It was completely picturesque, fall, hallmark heaven and everything I had hoped.

Image of fall foliage in Stowe, Vermont

Over the week we visited Massachusetts, Vermont and Maine. Drank apple cider, had the most yummy food, went to the beach, explored Salem, beautiful scenery, quaint hotels and the all important covered bridges! And the fall foliage came early this year, so we were treated to absolutely beautiful autumn scenes. Autumn is my favourite season so all the leaves and pumpkins were my ideal.

If you are interested in taking a week I have written a itinerary: One Week New England Roadtrip

October

I was made redundant in October, which slightly put a halt on the travel plans. But I spent some time in London, and with family and friends in Norfolk. I did get the chance to go on a press trip to Margate. So lovely to  have the opportunity to visit and new part of the UK, and I had the chance to take part in a beach clean!

image of a beach clean during a microgap to Margate

It was an odd month but one I did actually enjoy! It culminated in being offered a new job.

November

I started the month with my first visit to WTM, the crazy World Travel Market in London’s Excel. It was quite an intense few days! I then headed back to Norfolk to start my new job.

On day 3 of the new job, I was on a work trip to San Jose. I spent a day in San Francisco. While I didn’t get to see too much of the city, it reminded me how much I enjoy the States! A very short and sweet trip to California, only having 3 nights in the state. The jet lag was fun to deal with!

image of street in San Francisco

December

Again, the month started with another trip to California for work! It was a similar pattern to before, with no real chance to explore and a lot of jet lag. I came back and then visited the Warner Bro Studios for the 3rd time – but this time I saw Hogwarts in the snow. This was pretty magical, and such a good day trip out from London.

image of Hogwarts in the Snow

After Christmas I had a trip booked to Cuba. Because flights from the UK were stupidly expensive at this time of year, I caught the Eurostar to Paris and had a day in Paris. There wasn’t a huge amount of time to do much, but we walked to the Eiffel Tower, then to Montmarte and had some Vietnamese food.

image of the Eiffel Tower in Paris

Then – to Cuba! Landed in Havana was a dream come true. I fell in love with this historic, colourful and vibrant city. Plus it felt really safe. Post Havana, we headed to Vinales where I saw the year end drinking rum cocktails at a street party. Could not think of a better way to end the year!

image of the streets of Havana, Cuba

2019 roundup thoughts

As I mentioned, this year of travel was a pretty epic one! I am convinced I will not be able to top this year in the future. But I am forever grateful for the things I have experienced. 5 new countries, 5 continents and so many memories.

My 2019 roundup done!

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3 comments

Latitude Adjustment: A Tale of Two Wanderers January 12, 2020 - 5:53 pm

Great photos and post. Cheers to your 2020 adventures!

Reply
Charlie - Where Charlie Wanders January 12, 2020 - 6:16 pm

Thank you! Yes, bring on 2020!

Reply
jasonlikestotravel February 21, 2020 - 10:56 pm

One hell of a year! Excited to see what 2020 has in store for you!

Reply

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