Looking back over the last year while going through our “Good Stuff Jar” on New Years Eve (wondering what I’m talking about? click here!), Dan and I found that the majority of our best memories of 2015 came from the great amount of travel we were fortunate to do in the last 12 months. Seeing the world has always been my dream and I’m grateful for the generous adventures 2015 brought!
March//San Sebastian, Spain
Gorging to excess on pintxos and txakoli, a young white wine grown in the Basque Country, followed by some of the fanciest served up whiskey sours at the Museo del Whiskey and the best siesta. Check out my how-to blurb on the sometimes intimidating-to-newbies process of ordering pintxos.
Joining Marcos from We Hate Tourism Tours (how cheeky!) for a food, sightseeing, and fado filled night on the Eat Dinner With Us or Starve Tour (again, how cheeky!). One of the highlights of our time in Lisbon!
Joining thousands of Dutch citizens and visitors gathered in Dam Square on May 4th to watch the national remembrance ceremony and observe the nationwide two minutes of silence at 8pm in honor of all civilians and members of the armed forces who have been killed or murdered in the Kingdom of the Netherlands or anywhere else in the world in war situations or peacekeeping missions since the outbreak of World War II. It was beyond moving to see so many people put down their phones and cameras, bow their heads, and hear nothing but the wind rustling in this busy city for 120 seconds.
Going over the Swiss Alps on the panoramic Bernina Express and ‘ooohing’ and ‘aaahing’ every five seconds at the spectacular scenery whizzing by us as we made our way from Switzerland to northern Italy on the highest rail crossing of the Alps. Truly breathtaking! The Bernina Express and its sister route the Glacier Express are constantly making the list of best rail journeys in the world.
Learning the art of slow travel and enjoying quiet, peaceful moments in the Italian Lakes.
Taking in the relaxing scent of row after row of lavender in the fields of Provence and lamely paddle boating our way through Les Gorges du Verdon. Not to mention our scenic drive through the vineyards of the Dentelles and the abundance of the wonderfully delicious and inexpensive Côtes du Rhône wine produced in the region!
August//Lake District, UK
White knuckle driving over the Hardknott Pass in our little Ford Fiesta. There were a few moments I thought we would just have to pathetically and harrowingly slide back down the one-lane-with-no-guard-rail road to the bottom. Said to be the steepest road in England with a maximum 33% gradient the drive is an adventure in itself, never mind the fantastic views and the well preserved 1st century Roman fort located at the top of the pass.
Taking our dog Scooter on his first glamping trip (he loved it!) and watching the most beautiful sunset off the Welsh coast of Llŷn Peninsula. He also enjoyed exploring ancient castle and abbey ruins.
Watching the romantic Alhambra Palace glow amber in the sunset from the unforgettable San Nicolás viewpoint high up in the winding, historic Albayzin Moorish quarter and enjoying upon one of many street performances of flamenco dancers and the raspy voiced wails of the flamenco singers said to have duende or soul. ¡Me encanta esta ciudad!
Climbing or rather riding to new heights to the top the 8,284 feet high peak of Le Brévent in Chamonix at the base of Mont Blanc, the highest summit in the Alps. My family, along with Dan’s parents, all came together for a week long holiday in nearby Lyon, France and we drank our weight in wine and cheese.
Watching our youngest niece Grace toddle through the leaves of Paris attempting to pick up almost every one she came across. Her parents have decided her Native American Indian name would be “Rejects No Leaves”.
Spending the “Thanksgiving” holiday weekend in Berlin experiencing the magic of the city’s Christmas markets. Dan and I discovered that we do in fact enjoy glühwein and fought over bites of the most amazing doner kebab of our lives at Mustafa’s Gemüse Kebab. In hindsight, we should have just got two. Or three. Or four.
What were your favorite travel memories from 2015? I’d love to know!