This was a fun post to write! I saw this idea on https://tracystravelsintime.com/ and decided to try it too. I enjoyed reminiscing over my years of travel even though it was really tricky to pick one favourite for some of these questions. Here are my travel ABCs.
A – Age of first international trip:
My first ever trip abroad was when I was 18 months old and it was to Switzerland visiting family. My mum always tells the story of the plane journey where I cried the whole way home while my grandparents pretended they didn’t know us!
B – Best Beach you’ve been to:
The best beach I’ve been to was probably in Penang, Malaysia (though I’m sure this will change after Sri Lanka this year). After hiking through Penang National Park we arrived at a beautiful white, sandy beach which was completely deserted.
C -Favorite Cuisine:
I’ve eaten so many wonderful dishes around the world (read my post about it here) that it’s hard to decide on just one cuisine! Italian might be my favourite as I love pasta and pizza. though I’m debating whether the street food in Asia would top this; my favourite being mango and sticky rise.
D – Favorite Destination:
I’ve fallen in love with many places that I have visited. My favourite place overall (at the moment) is Indonesia. I love the volcanic islands, especially Flores, and the beautiful landscapes. A close second would be Switzerland, though I’m biased as I have family from there.
E – Experience that made you say wow:
Beautiful landscapes and seeing various animals in the wild. One of my most ‘wow’ moments was watching little penguins waddle out of the ocean and up the beach in Australia (read about it here). Another ‘wow’ experience was seeing Lagoa Do Fogo in the Azores, the beauty blew me away.
F -Favourite mode of transportation:
My favourite mode of transportation is probably by boat. I love seeing different views from the sea and I saw the best sunset I have ever seen in Kotor on a cruise ship.
G – Greatest feeling while traveling:
For me, nothing beats the feeling of seeing an animal act naturally in its natural habitat and almost being immersed in their world for just one moment.
H – Hottest place you’ve ever traveled:
China. It was over 30 degrees and I’ve never experienced humidity like it. I guess that’s what I get for travelling there in August!
I – Incredible service you’ve experienced:
Riad Miski in Marrakesh. The French couple who owned this riad were extremely attentive and helpful. The man even walked us to the main square, Jemaa el-Fna, and helped us to change up our money.
J- Journey that took the longest:
Apart from long distance plane journeys, my longest journey would probably be one of the sleeper trains in China. I remember one took around 13 hours and we didn’t have any air conditioning. I didn’t mind though, I loved being on the sleeper trains and playing cards with friends.
K – Keepsake from your travels:
Photographs and my diaries. I’m extremely snap-happy while travelling; I just want to photograph everything so I’ll never forget it. I often look back on the photos I have taken on a trip and like printing some to make collages or scrap books with.
L – Least favourite destination:
This would probably be George Town in Malaysia. I wasn’t a fan of the open sewers and the rats scuttling around the streets. In hindsight, I wish we’d stayed somewhere else in Penang.
M – Moment when you fell in love with travel:
20. Although I loved all my trips before this age, I think 20 is the time when I truly fell in love with travel and decided I wanted to make it a priority. This was when I went on 3 month trip backpacking around Asia and Australia.
N- Nicest hotel you’ve stayed at:
Although I’m usually used to budget hostels, when going away with my family we tend to stay in nicer places. The nicest place I’ve ever stayed is Hotel Eden in Montreux, Switzerland. This was my Grandma and Grandpa’s favourite hotel so we always stayed there when visiting Montreux. Walking into the reception area and seeing the mountains across the lake through the large windows always took my breath away. I loved sitting on my balcony and soaking up the scenary.
O – Obsession (what you take pictures of the most while traveling):
Beautiful lakes. Some of my favourite travel pictures are those of the turquoise lakes of Plitvice National Parks in Croatia and the stunning lakes in the Azores. I’m a sucker for a beautiful landscape with lakes and mountains.
P – Passport stamps (how many and where from)?
21 from various places including South Africa, Thailand, Hong Kong, Australia, America, Malaysia and my China visa. I wish every country would stamp my passport on entry!
Q – Quirkiest attraction you’ve visited:
The White Temple in Thailand. There were hands coming out of the ground which represented hell. You needed to walk through hell in order to get to heaven, the temple. The inside of the temple was completely unique too, with paintings of things like superheroes and Harry Potter!
R – Really frightening (a place you have felt insecure/uneasy):
Flying from Bali to Flores, Indonesia. The plane shook the whole way and I was convinced it was the end. I don’t like flying at the best of times but this was the worst journey I’d ever had.
S – Splurge (something you have no problem spending money on while traveling)
Experiences. When I’m in a wonderful part of the world I’m happy to spend a little more money than I usually would on variety day trips and other experiences. I’ll still try to get around as cheap as possible but I don’t like turning an experience down because of the cost (within reason), I’m only there once after all.
T – Most Touristy thing you’ve done:
The Empire State Building in New York. I often do touristy things abroad (there’s a reason why they’re so popular!) but I like finding places that are lesser known too.
U – Most Unforgettable travel memory:
The feeling of seeing a lion in the wild (nearly) on a game reserve I was volunteering at in South Africa. I didn’t see them for the whole first part of my trip and I had given up hope. Then on a dawn drive on my final day I finally saw two majestic male lions. It was magnificent.
W – Best Waterfall:
Krka National Park, Croatia. I was overwhelmed by the beauty of the waterfall and we could climb up right by the side of it too. I loved the sound of the water crashing down to the water below.
X – eXcellent view:
Rochers De Naye, Switzerland. Walking around the top of the mountain and admiring the various views felt so peaceful and blissful.
Y -Years spent traveling:
I started at 18 months, so 24 years.
Z – Most Zealous sports fans:
The only live sport I’ve been to is rugby so it would have to be rugby fans!