2016 was a year of opportunities. As the year draws to an end I wanted to reflect on my year of travel and what that means for me in the new year to come. I do so by taking part of the Travel Whispers Challenge.
I have learned that traveling solo doesn’t mean you’re alone. It means you appreciate “your” time and feel a close bond those that share the same travel manifesto as you do. By doing so, I found myself amidst genuinely beautiful people that inspire my wanderlust everyday. My bucket list is ever changing and by sharing stories and chatting with my new found family of travelers I realized how much of the world I have yet to see.
Everyone knows what the Whisper Challenge is, so anther traveler, Stephanie, started this lovely spin on the popular challenge. I share Stephanie’s optimism for starting 2017 with this:
The Travel Whispers Blogger Challenge
These questions are designed to be a lot more inspiring than starting a conversation with small talk and intended to involve more than just one person.
Each Travel Whispers post can be found by clicking the link through to the next blogger at the bottom of the post, and so on, so take the time to read through a few – you might find some exciting new bloggers to follow and some great travel ideas for the future! You can also find them across Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #TravelWhispers.
1.) If you had to move to a country that you’ve NEVER been to, and live there for ten years, where would you go?
Right off the bat this is a difficult question for me to answer. I like to be challenged and for that reason I would choose Japan. I think I have proved to myself that I can move to a country I have never been to and learn the language, meet people, and be successful at my job in a year and half. Asia brings the same kind of challenge even for a traveller but in a different way. I believe by finding myself in such positions I am forced to either accept the circumstances or make an effort to thrive in it. Japan…I challenge you to challenge me!
2.) If you had to live in a hotel for the rest of your life, which hotel would you choose and why?
Titanic Chaussee in Berlin. The service is grand, the rooms are luxuriously comfortable, the bar is a popular hangout for all ages and located in Berlin Mitte and a stones throw away from the major parts of the city.
3. If you could only eat the cuisine of one nationality forever more, which would you choose?
Chinese! Honestly, I was a bit worried when I went to China what the cuisine situation would be like with me being a celiac. I was worried for no reason. I choose Chinese not just for the food itself but for the entire act of sharing a meal. The Chinese culture embraces meal times as an important part of ones day. As a guest I was treated by such open, friendly and generous hosts that it felt familial already. In China, sharing is caring and they bring the best.
4. Who has given you ‘holiday envy’ this year, and how?
I was first inspired by a pair of gentleman that travel around the world. Their humor, candid attitude, and friendly demeanor have inspired me to travel to uncharted territory and thanks to them I found I like to take the road less traveled and stray away from the beaten path. Thanks to these gentleman I have cultivated my own travel manifesto and what I want to do.
5. If you had to look at the same sunrise or the same sunset every day, where in the world would you never get bored of seeing? Please don’t say sitting outside Cafe Mambo in Ibiza.
I haven’t been lucky enough to see many sunsets in my life because I just hadn’t planned to. But I do love some lighting storms. I used to love sitting on the roof of my apartment in Brooklyn, New York and watch the lightning roll into the city behind a screen of clouds across the Manhattan skyline.
6. If you were taking a ‘staycation’ in your home town, where would it be and what would you recommend others to do?
Denver, Colorado, U.S.A. As a proud Coloradan I love the history of my home state. It’s seeded with cowboys, the gold rush, ghost stories, and Native Americans. Colorado also has an active outdoor culture and is ideal for people seeking an adventure in rock climbing, skiing, white water rafting, trekking, and hiking 14’ers. For those who aren’t outdoor-sports inclined, I take them on micro-brewery tours. Colorado has developed and growing it’s food scene. Most places adapted a farm to table concept and renowned chefs are making their marks here. Another incredible experience to have in Colorado is to experience the music scene. Red Rocks amphitheater is perhaps one of the best concert venues there are.
7. Describe your perfect travel day of the year?
In April 2015 I went back to the city of my dreams, Paris. The best day of that trip was slowly sipping my cafe au lait outside in the Marais district feeling like a million bucks. Time just stopped still for those few minutes and I thought that this is what life should be, uncrushed and moments to be appreciated no matter how big or small. Another favorite day was discovering the Louvre in Paris on the same trip.
8. What have you ticked off your bucket list in 2016?
Actually doing and finishing a 12 Trip Challenge!!
9. What is top of your travel bucket list for 2017?
ICELAND! I’ve been pining to visit Iceland in the winter. Some would say that I’m crazy to go in the dead of winter but it’s exactly the reason I want to go. My travel isn’t dictated or planned around conformity and what everyone else is doing because I want a different perspective on things. I’ve also fallen in love with Italy (who hasn’t?) and I plan on eating my way through Italy in 2017. Cuba is also an itch that has begun to get bigger too.
10. Share your favourite Instagram photo of 2016?
Sometimes I covet my favorite photos. They become more special to me that way. However, I did share my favorite photo from my trip to Ireland and it hasn’t lost it’s value to me yet!
Check out Stephanie Fox’s Challenge here, she has some great travel ideas!
Annette at XLush has a down-to-earth approach to life and has some great experiences in Thailand.
If you want to get involved (you might end up planning your next trip) join the Facebook group!