That Time I Wondered “Where Next?”

With the year over half way gone already, I’m feeling like I haven’t hit the road as much as I would have hoped so far in 2013…

I've been researching hard though!

I’ve been researching hard though!

After all, hitting only one country since I started this site back in October last year definitely wasn’t the intention! (That long already?! Jeez…)

Of course, that one country was the one BIG trip thus far this year – an amazing week in the number one destination on my hitlist: Japan. And I’ve got some European fun coming up very shortly now, with a long weekend in Amsterdam promising to be eventful, followed by a week long escape to my spiritual home of Barcelona a month later. But those latter two are repeat visits.

That’s not intended to be a moan in anyway of course, as I’m very very grateful to be in the position to head out on such adventures, particularly considering how different things were just a few years ago. Although I must add I am working damn hard for it!

The fact remains though that this is a travel site, and I want to be seeing some new shores as soon as possible and sharing those experiences. I also want to be working on my photography, and nothing excites me more than getting to snap plenty of new sights.

And thankfully I still have almost two weeks of annual leave left for this calendar year – Hooray! So the question is “where next?”.

I’ve been mulling over various ideas recently, but with so many places appealing to me it’s a toughie! So here’s the ideas high on the hitlist at the mo…

Sweden

Looks purdy at Christmas (Image Credit: ILGA2012.org)

It looks purdy at Christmas (Image Credit: ILGA2012.org)

One country that’s always been high on my list is the largest of the Nordic countries. Stylish Stockholm has always appealed, although the fact that it’s not easily reached from any of the airports in my area of the UK has made it feel like a lot of effort for now. And that’s before I’ve even considered Sweden’s expensive reputation…

However I do have a tie to Sweden that would make it a very interesting destination – an uncle living there! And he’s situated in scenic Småland in the forest filled South. Meaning the chance is there to experience a very different part of Sweden to many visitors. The only difficulty really is, again, getting there.

But a nice decision to ponder that’s for sure!

Ireland

Top o' the mornin' and all that... (Image Credit: Conde Nast Traveller)

Top o’ the mornin’ and all that… (Image Credit: Conde Nast Traveller)

Our nearest neighbour overseas has only recently appealed to me as a destination. Having made several trips to London already this year – and being as usual, sick of the sight of it – checking out the capital of Ireland seems like a fun and easily accessible alternative. And with my girlfriend also bringing it up in conversation it’s certainly looking like a potential winner.

Simply soaking up the atmosphere in the city would do me fine for a fun weekend, along with being a typical tourist and enjoying the craic in the Temple Bar area. Having said that I wouldn’t mind venturing out of the city and checking out the rugged cliffs at Howth for a short taste of rural Ireland as well.

Germany

Will "ich liebe dich" Munich? (Image Credit: OrangeSmile.org)

Will “ich liebe dich” Munich? (Image Credit: OrangeSmile.org)

I’ve always planned to check out Germany at some point in the future, particularly as I’ve covered a lot of Mediterranean Europe now, and it seems like the logical starting point for exploring Central Europe.

Checking out cultural Munich and cosmopolitan Berlin are obvious draws, although I’d also love to catch a football match in Dortmund’s Signal Iduna Park.

The added twist that could make a visit to Germany interesting? My Mum wants to go! She’s definitely caught the travel bug after her jaunt to Edinburgh, and having always been a fan of all things German she’s well up for being my Deutschland travel buddy! And that could actually be a lot of fun. So I’m seriously tempted!

Austria/Switzerland

This'll be easy, obviously. (Image Credit: Telegraph.co.uk)

This’ll be easy, obviously. (Image Credit: Telegraph.co.uk)

These two both feature for the simple reason of a certain upcoming season – Ski season!

I’ve actually never been skiing or snowboarding before, and I’m desperate to break that duck – particularly snowboarding, being something I’ve always wanted to try. But due to my lack of experience I have no idea how to go about booking a ski trip, and I’m not sure how feasible that is on my own either.

Nevertheless the amount of ski resorts I already know of in these countries make them appealing. And with Interlaken, Flims, Mayrhofen and Bad Gastein all being rated as suitable for beginners I’m über keen to head out and hit the slopes. Any takers?

Iceland

The view from the top of Húsavíkurfjall

Look – Ice!

It’s always been on the list, but having my good buddy Ben share his awesome experience of Iceland on the site has brought the country firmly back to the forefront of my thinking again.

And it goes without saying that a trip over later in the year comes with a massive dangling carrot – the chance to see the Northern Lights.

That’s an item that’s always been on my (theoretical) bucket list, and I believe on the girlfriend’s too… So it’s an extremely tempting option!

USA

Sing it to me Alicia! (Image Credit: IB Times)

Sing it to me Alicia! (Image Credit: IB Times)

The one major new temptation is to splurge and head stateside for a flying visit to New York. I wouldn’t claim to go there for anything other than completely touristy reasons, but I’ve always been keen to head over the pond and check out the big apple, and it could make for some exciting Christmas shopping…

There’s one not so new place – among the many – that I’m super keen to return to however, and I’m absolutely itching to go ASAP. But surprisingly it’s not the land of the rising sun (yet)…

Hong Kong

After the endless smog, this was epic...

I need those vistas again. But at night!

I already explained before how I felt I didn’t get to see the best of Hong Kong on my first trip, what with me dealing with the effects of my first long-haul flight and first experience outside of Europe. And I’m seriously desperate to get back and rectify that!

Probably the only aspects that have stopped me so far is knowing that HK doesn’t have a great hostel scene, meaning it may be hard to meet people, and the fact that it’s another long long flight for what will probably be a 5 day visit at best.

Despite that though, I do desperately want to experience Hong Kong properly (and preferably with less humidity!), and if I can find a direct flight for under £600 I could well be sold…

So those are the possible destinations high on my hit-list for the near future. Where do you think I should head?

Any personal tips or recommendations about these ideas? Or any different destinations you would recommend?

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21 responses to “That Time I Wondered “Where Next?”

  1. Don’t book a ski trip, do a ski season! It is the only way to learn and actually get any vague skill without being one of those lucky kids who was strapped into skis from the moment they could stand up. I did one last year and fell in love with it, learnt to board and ski, made great friends and am heading out to another resort for the coming winter!

    • Hey Jess! Your comment got wrongly marked as spam, so I’ve only just found it. I would love to do a ski season – I actually applied a few years back, but it was quite late so I missed out. Sadly I can’t really leave my current job so soon after starting, as I didn’t exactly stay long at my last one haha! So it may be something that I don’t get round to doing unfortunately… 😦

      Where are you heading off to this year?

      • Hello there! That is quite alright, I guess that I do ramble and talk rather a lot of rubbish… Oh no! Well never say never to anything and you are never to old for a season… As far as I am aware, I am headed to Val Thorens so I have the whole of the Three Valleys to play with!

        • Ha not at all, it was full of top advice 😀 Yeah should circumstances change I’d love to do one… We shall see!

          Nice, one of my best friends did a season in that area too, so I’m very jealous! Hope you have an awesome time (again!), and I’ll look forward to reading about it 🙂

          • Well I had a total flash of inspiration…. You and your special lady should book a holiday to come and stay in my ski chalet! We need a crew of bloggers and to have a, hmmm reunion isn’t the right work but I think just about conveys what I mean!

  2. Currently in Austria and LOVING IT. It is summer here now, so that might affect my opinion of it but still. this really is a great country.
    We are currently staying in Wagrain, a quirky little town known for it’s great skiing. They are building new cablecarts and are already preparing for the winter. So yes, I would definitely recommend going here. The food is also pretty great by the way.
    I’m also a Germany fan, Cologne is one of my favorite cities in the world. I like Berlin, but only in the summer. I think it get too grey in the winter.
    Whatever you choose to do, it will be a great adventure for sure.

    • Thanks Angela 🙂 My next door neighbours gave Austria a glowing recommendation too! They love it there and would like to live there. I just have no idea how to go about sorting a ski/snowboard trip like I say.

      Oh cheers for the recommendation, I’ll have to look into Cologne! Can’t wait to make some decisions thats for sure!

  3. What about the Baltics? They are quite cheap to visit and not so big, so you could do a Baltic trip for less than 100€!!

    • My best friend wants to do that next summer! I’m potentially up for it, but no way I can plan so far ahead – I’m just incapable of being THAT organised haha! 😀

  4. You should head back to Hong Kong and we can meet up – I can show you some good spots and introduce you to some cool locals!

    Although I have to say….Moscow and Budapest should be on your list!

    • I really do want to! Damn Cathay Pacific being so expensive – even if they are worth it!

      Would be good to see more of Hong Kong’s hidden cool spots that’s for sure. Are you heading back there for a bit?

    • Haha I mentioned elsewhere on here that me and friend have actually talked about a short Belgian road-trip for years. And that’s making it sound a lot more tempting again 😀

    • Taiwan fascinates me, mostly I think because I don’t actually know a lot about it!

      I’d certainly be keen to visit if I was in the part of the world and got the chance to 🙂

  5. Pingback: That Time I Added Ireland to My Itinerary | That Time In·

  6. I know what you mean- I’ve been travel blogging for almost a year now and haven’t even left the country once since then! But hopefully it all works out. While I think your destinations sound great I’d really consider the weather. Iceland, Sweden, and Germany are amazing but beyond the summer months, it’s brutally cold which really does affect the trip. Unless you’re going to do a snow sport (such as with Austria or Switzerland) I feel like the cold is not worth it.

    • Hey Aryn. Yeah the cold weather is probably the main reason I’ve not made a firm decision on any of those places in particular. I actually like the cold, but Iceland and Sweden would be rather colder than my norm for sure. So it’s a toughie…

      Hope you do make it abroad soon for some more adventures 🙂

  7. Pingback: That Time I Was Headed Back to Hong Kong | That Time In·

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