First off, Happy New Year! Secondly, this has gone live on the first day back to work for most people, including myself – HIDEOUS!!!! In work terms it’s probably the worst day of the year so lets pray it’s swift and painless and out of the way pretty bloody quickly. As soon as Christmas and New Year are over my thoughts immediately go to holidays, and making a travel bucket list for the year.
I’ve got no time for January, very little time for February and I can barely tolerate March. I’m definitely trying to plan fun stuff as I do way better at life in general when I have something to look forward to, and even if that is just putting a deposit down for a big trip that’s fine by me. Even just talking about it calms my nerves. My 2017 travel bucket list has grown steadily over the past few weeks as I’ve seen nearly all the blogs I follow share their highlights of 2016 featuring some amazing looking places. I did pretty well at ticking off most places I wanted to go last year, here’s my own highlights of 2016, but the ones I didn’t have rolled over to this year as well as a few new ones.
It was this time last year that I discovered the Take 12 Trips blogger challenge, where you basically challenge yourself to take 12 trips throughout the year, ideally one a month but doesn’t have to be. They can be day trips, weekend trips, full blown holidays, anything at all and I didn’t think I’d be able to afford/find time for twelve but when I look back now I did way more. I’m not going to actually do the challenge, but I have actually come up with 12 places I want to go to or already have planned.
In a completely dramatic turn of events just before Christmas my sister announced she’s moving to the US for two years. She will be based in Philadelphia but have access to the office in NYC, so obviously I will need to visit her at some point. I’d love to go to both cities, as I’ve never been to Philadelphia before, and I want to go to New York with Kieran because, well New York. I’ve never yet seen the Rockefeller Christmas tree, so that is definitely on the bucket list, and it was so nice to go to Paris in December that I think a Christmas city break should basically be a tradition from now on.
This one is already planned in at least twice. Every time I go for work I always think I wish I had more time there, so when Virgin Trains Black Friday deal of £10 tickets from Newcastle came out I booked a weekend for us at the end of January. We are going back to being tourists and doing all the sights, as well as Sushi Samba (FINALLY got booked in there!). I have another trip planned for my cousins 30th in May too.
Another trip for some friends 30ths in March, a day making our way round the bars of Edinburgh. We are staying over so I will definitely be after some shopping time on George Street as well.
Italy – definitely Florence, ideally Rome, possibly the Amalfi Coast
I already have Florence booked for the start of September, and really looking forward to it. I’ve never been to Italy and I’d really like to go more than once this year, but it will depend on other plans and bastard budgets. In Florence I want to go to the original Gucci, chosen my target bag already, and a pizza place that serves heart shaped pizzas!
I’ve wanted to go to Rome for a long time now, and I have a hotel voucher to use so I think I might put it towards a trip to the Italian capital. I just think I’d love it – for the carbs partly (mainly) but also for the beautiful sights and the fountain. It’s one of those places I think there will be so much to see and do I really hope we get there.
A friend of mine did the Amalfi Coast last year, and it looked absolutely gorgeous. Dramatic cliffs and pretty colourful fishing villages, all under bright sun literally is my ideal summer trip. This may get sacked off in favour of a bigger trip I’m not sure yet.
A Spa break
I already have one booked in to Headlam Hall in February, when my sister is home, but there’s a new one I want to try, details soon hopefully, and I wouldn’t turn down a return trip to the divine Rockliffe Hall again either.
A long haul trip – Cuba, Jamaica, Bali – not fussy!
After Mexico I would really love to do another long haul somewhere exotic and beautiful again that isn’t America. Somewhere that would be a culture shock but gorgeous. We looked at Jamaica last year as an option, and now it’s easier to get to Cuba I’m definitely keen to go soon before it becomes commercialised. Havana looks really cool, but then I’d want to come out of the city and stay along the coast after. Bali always looks incredible, but I think that might be just out of reach this year. To be honest I don’t mind at all where out of all of the above, I told Kieran he can choose.
I’ve never been to Northern Ireland before, but in May we are heading over there for a family wedding and staying in the centre. I doubt we will see much of it but I’m looking forward to it regardless and can’t wait to see those two get married! There’s a hen do before then as well somewhere near Durham.
I’ve no idea when I will fit this in but I’ve wanted to go for a while now. I really want to try the thermal baths, sit in an old ruin bar, and see the buildings lit up at night. I’m told it’s pretty cheap so maybe a last minute weekend will turn into a Budapest trip.
Another place I absolutely have to go to one day, and again another that I looked at last year but we couldn’t book up straight away and missed out on the deal I saw. From what I’ve read it would be good for a four day break, and not necessarily in the summer either. Marrakech and Fez are where I want to go, but if anyone has any recommendations send them my way! Just take a look how pretty it is!
Obviously if I could jet off every week the list would be a lot longer, but I’m trying to be realistic. I’m on a life mission this year and have big plans so need to try and be a bit more sensible than last year. If the first day back at work after Christmas isn’t motivation to plan fun shit for the year then I don’t know what is!