I know I am late with this New Year’s post, but we are still in January so it’s not that bad! I haven’t been here recently, and I get scared when I see when my last post was published… However, it is never too late to go back to an old habit, so I hope that in this second half of my blog’s first year I will be more consistent!
Now, let’s dive in to the real topic of this post: the year 2019 that has just gone by. Even though I have mixed feelings about it in terms of professional and personal life, I have to say that travel-wise, it was INCREDIBLE. And that is what I will talk about in this post.
I feel like 2019 was really the year of longer and more meaningful trips. I learned so much and thanks to my job as a freelancer, I was able to travel and work at the same time, which allowed me to stay away for longer.
This is why I will do here some sort of recap of the trips I went to this year, focusing mainly on the “big four”, the ones that were longer or further away than I’m usually used to. However, I also love my shorter, weekend-like trips, so I will briefly mention them at the end, mainly as a way for me to keep track of everything. So let’s get going!
Brazil – Christmas and New Year on the beach
One highlight: the beach of Morro Branco
This 2018-2019 trip was definitely a great start for 2019, as I started it on the beach (and not freezing). It put me in such an amazing mood and allowed me to recharge my batteries right in the middle of a very cold Austrian winter.
Starting my days with fresh fruit by the beach is to this day one of the most amazing memories that I have and I feel so incredibly lucky for this relaxing and – at the same time – exciting trip!
Canada – Maple syrup and snow
One highlight: the view on top of the Mont Royal
Another wonderful thing I did is visiting my lovely sister in her new city in Canada. She had moved there a few months before and I really wanted to go and visit her, as well as discover the amazing Montreal. I went there in March, and I was actually quite lucky with the weather as it wasn’t that cold. The great thing about that time of the year is that it is also maple syrup season, so on top of eating out in delicious places almost every day, we went to a sugar shack for a traditional Canadian meal – and lots of maple syrup!
I had such a great time there, visiting my first northern-American country and letting my sister show me around her adoptive city!
Russia – learning in full immersion
One highlight: seeing The Swan Lake ballet at the Mariinsky theater
I have already talked a lot about my trip to Russia, so I’ll keep this paragraph quite short. For those who haven’t read my other posts, I went to St Petersburg for a month to learn Russian. It was an incredible experience and even though it felt quite scary at the beginning, I learned so much about the language and the culture. It gave me the boost I needed in my language-learning and provided some lifetime memories.
St Petersburg is a gorgeous city and I have very fond memories of my “Russian family”. I hope I’ll be able to go back one day!
Spain – “a city I could live in”
One highlight: azulejos everywhere!
Finally, my month-long trip to sunny Seville. It is one of the main things I recently talked about on this blog (here and here) as it really impacted me a lot. Everything about that city and the people that live there is incredible, and it is definitely a destination I would recommend to absolutely everyone. I know for sure that I will go back there, and I hope it will be soon!
Other trips worth mentioning:
In 2019 I also got lucky enough to live in three different places, so I started the year living in Austria, the I moved back to the South of France for some time, and I finished the year in Brussels. This led to many different local adventures and amazing experiences that I will list down here. I hope that I’ll be able to do blog posts on all of them one day, but for now, I’ll keep it as a list!
- Road trip with friends around Salzburg, the Austrian lake district and Southern Germany
- Many local adventures in the South East of France
- Other amazing place in the South of France: Roussillon, Fontaine-de-Vaucluse, the Gorges du Verdon, Avignon
- Meeting new family members in the South West of France and a day in the Spanish Basque country
- A few days in lovely Rome
- August in Salento, Italy
- Interview, and starting a new job in Brussels
- A weekend in Luxembourg
- A weekend in Lille, France
- Christmas market in Cologne, Germany
- Post-Christmas break in Catalonia, Spain
So here you have it, my recap of the trips I went to in 2019! When looking at this I have to say that I feel so very lucky to have had the opportunity, the time and the finances to be able to experience all of this. For this new year to come, I won’t have as much time to travel for so long, so I just hope that my next trips will be intense and meaningful, and that this will motivate me to go on even more local adventures!
Where did you go in the past year? Are you planning anything for 2020?