For my final post of the year, I like to round up all of my travels from the last 12 months. It’s a great way to remember and appreciate everything I have seen and done. I love seeing how these posts turn out as at the start of the year I had no idea I would get to visit some of the destinations in this list. There is always an element of unknown with travel blogging, which keeps things exciting!
This post will give an overview of the 15 trips and 10 countries I have been lucky enough to visit this year. If you want to read more about any of the destinations I have visited this year then click the links in the paragraphs and you’ll go straight to the relevant blog posts. I hope you enjoy my 2017 travel round up…
1. Amsterdam, Netherlands
My first trip of 2017 was a quick hop over to Amsterdam to review the wonderfully stylish Pulitzer Amsterdam. I would go as far as saying this hotel has the most beautiful interiors I have ever seen and I definitely came back with some serious style inspiration for my own home. I felt like this was the trip that I really got to grips with Amsterdam as a city. We spend most of our time in the beautiful Negen Straatjes area, which is incredibly photogenic!
2. Athens, Greece
Next up was a 3-night city break to Athens with Discover Greece. I was able to bring my younger sister along with me on this trip, who loves travel just as much as me. We had the most fabulous 3 days exploring the Acropolis and getting to grips with Athens’ incredible foodie scene and rooftop culture. The weather was perfect and it was definitely the first real bit of sunshine I felt in 2017. Athens is such an underrated European city break and I would love to go back.
Read: The Ultimate City Guide to Athens or check out my article in The Evening Standard; Why Athens is Europe’s Coolest New City Break Destination
3. Montgenevre, France
My third trip of the year was a ski trip to Montgenevre with Inghams. Montgenevre is definitely a smaller and lesser-known ski resort in France but what makes it unique is that it sits on the French / Italian border, meaning you can ski between both countries in one day. This trip was especially fun as I got to experience it with two of my favourite travel blogging ladies; Sabrina from Clutch and Carry On and Carlie from Carlie Tasker. Ski trips are always more fun when you’re laughing, right?
4. Milan, Italy
My trip to Milan was actually for my best friend’s hen party, so it wasn’t anything to do with the blog. As bridesmaid, I had planned the entire trip from booking the flights and finding the Air BNB to choosing our activities. Milan was a bit of a rogue choice for a hen do but it ended up being an incredible trip and most importantly, the bride-to-be loved it.
5. Puglia, Italy
I make no secrets that Italy has a special place in my heart and this trip to Puglia made me fall even more in love with the country. This trip was a campaign with Classic Collection, who I visited Madeira with in 2016. My friend Katie and I hired a car and explored the whole region from the coastal town of Monopoli to the quaint whitewashed villages of Alberobello and Ostuni. The scenery is spectacular, the food is out-of-this-world. I have such fond memories of this trip and I would love to go back to Puglia with Scott.
6. Bandol, South of France
My trip to the South of France was with Princess Cruises to step on-board a cruise ship for the first time, and to experience wine tasting in Bandol. I loved this trip as I got to travel with the wonderful Claire and Laura from Twins that Travel, as well as sip beautiful rose in a French vineyard. Our tour around the Royal Princess was fascinating and we got to step ‘behind the scenes’ and see what went on in the huge galley kitchen. This trip definitely made me consider doing a cruise in the future, if it was to the right destinations.
7. Rudding Park, Harrogate UK
Our stay at Rudding Park was much closer to home than usual, infact, I didn’t even have to leave Yorkshire. I got to enjoy this pre-birthday press stay with my boyfriend Scott so we made it into a bit of a celebration and spa weekend. The new spa at Rudding Park is incredible and the food at Horto’s restaurant is definitely at Michelin star level. I am so glad to have incredible hotels like Rudding Park on my doorstep. I will definitely be back!
8. Graz, Salzburg & Innsbruck, Austria
This trip was a big turning point for me as it was my first solo trip. Not only was I travelling solo, I had to make my way though 3 different Austrian cities by train, so it definitely felt like a challenge and a mini adventure. I pushed myself to try solo travel and in the end it turned out to be one of my favourite trips of the year. My trip to Austria was part of the #UncoverAustria campaign, in which other UK bloggers were sent to experience different routes around the country at different times. Thank you Visit Austria for pushing me to try solo travel!
9. Bilbao, Spain
I also took part in the #SpainCities campaign in June with Visit Spain which was a really exciting project to be involved in. Visit Spain sent 10 UK influencers to 10 lesser-known Spainish cities all on the same weekend. Although we were all travelling solo, we were all following each other’s weekends on social and so you didn’t really feel alone at all. I went on an incredible food tour around Bilbao’s old town where I got to try the Basque Countries’ answer to tapas; Pintxos.
10. Antigua, Caribbean
In August I flew to the Caribbean island of Antigua with the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority. I got the chance to dance in the carnival parade and it was probably the most alive and elated I have felt all year. The atmosphere was electric and I felt so lucky to be a part of such a huge cultural event. It’s definitely an experience I will never forget. I think this photo sums up how I was feeling at the time.
11. Bern, Switzerland
Also in August I took my second solo trip to the medieval city of Bern in Switzerland. Few people know that Bern is actually the capital of Switzerland and plays a big part in the country’s economic and political infrastructure. Nestled within the horseshoe bend of the River Aare, Bern’s historical old town is compact and incredibly charming. I spent 3 days exploring this beautiful European city and stayed at the famous Bellevue Palace.
12. Almunecar, Spain
Almunecar is located on the Southern coast of Spain about 1 hour away from Malaga. My parent’s own a villa out there so it’s somewhere I am becoming quite familiar with. Almuencar is the one place I feel like I can totally switch off and relax, so this is where I spent my 1 official holiday of the year. Although I took time off whilst I was there, I did find time to blog about a beautiful hillside village we discovered called Frigiliana
13. Edinburgh, Scotland
Scott and I jumped on a train to head up to Edinburgh for a 2-night stay at the Apex Waterloo Place hotel. This was part of their #HitSnooze campaign, which involved a hotel review and a hotel break giveaway to my readers (thanks to everyone who entered!). My Dad grew up in Edinburgh and my Grandma still lives there, so it’s a place I am familiar with and have a great love for. It’s one of the few places in the world I could actually see myself living one day.
14. New York, USA
Without a doubt, New York was my highlight trip of the year. It’s somewhere I have dreamt of visiting for years and this year I made it happen. I planned the whole trip and partnered with Norwegian Air and Preferred Hotels. This was a girly trip with my friend Harriet so there was lots of brunching, shopping and cocktails involved, as well as seeing all of the big sights. I totally fell in love with New York and can’t wait to return.
15. Verbier, Switzerland
My final trip of the year was to the well-known ski resort of Verbier in Switzerland. The main focus of the trip was to an individual campaign with hotel Cordee des Alpes, a beautiful boutique hotel in the heart of Verbier town. I also faced my fears and tried paragliding for the first time, for which I had to ski down a mountain to take flight in tandem. It was one of the most terrifying and exhilarating things I have ever done and I will be blogging all about it in the New Year.
This is my last post of 2017 so I want to wish you all a very healthy, happy and successful New Year. Thank you for all the support you’ve shown me in 2017.
What did you think of my 2017 travel round up? Are there any destinations here that you’d love to visit? If you enjoyed this post please leave me a comment in the box below x