Travel plans for 2014, plus a recap of 2013

What a year it’s been! I thought in addition to highlighting my best travel moments of 2013, it would be fun to do a quick recap of the year, and also share my tentative travel plans for 2014.

Winter 2013

I found amazing airfare to Denver, Colorado where we spent two nights at the amazing Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, an easy drive that took under a couple hours. Even despite being winter in Colorado, the weather was quite pleasant and actually made for a lovely morning of ice skating (on a real frozen lake!) and snowshoeing through the Rocky Mountain National Park. On the way back to the airport on Sunday, we made a pitstop at the Red Rocks Amphitheater.

I also visited Norway in the winter. A lot of people prefer Norway in the summer, and I can see why. It’s gloomy and cold (but really, that’s how I pictured Norway), and some of the popular hikes and roads are closed off. But I went for an entirely different type of trip. This trip consisted of an ice hotel, dog sledding, and most notably, seeing the northern lights.

Spring 2013

I was finishing up at FAU and preparing for my move from Miami to Philadelphia, so I didn’t do a lot of traveling outside of the state in the beginning of spring. I did revisit some old favorites, though, while they were still quick and easy to get to. This included Disney World, the Bahamas, and Key West.

I also went to the Everglades and to St. Augustine for a couple days – two places in Florida that I kept meaning to get to, but just never got around to it.

Towards the end of spring and shortly before my move came the South Africa trip. This may have been one my best trips of all time. I visited Cape Town, Johannesburg, and Kruger National Park.

Summer 2013

I arrived in Philadelphia at the beginning of the summer and in addition to exploring various parts of the city (even now, I still feel like a tourist every weekend) there was (and still is) so much to see and do nearby. I visited Lancaster, Bethlehem, and local vineyards, just to name a few. I made several visits to Atlantic City and New York City, and explored the Jersey Shore beaches for the first time, too. Between the two I visited (Ocean City and Wildwood), I’d say Wildwood is my favorite. I also visited family in Miami, where once again, I felt like a tourist – even though I had lived there for 28 years.

Towards the end of summer, I visited Cape Cod, MA for a few days.

Fall 2013

I didn’t do much outside of the northeast region for the majority of last fall, but that’s okay – I was loving the foliage. Towards the end of the season, though, I visited French Polynesia: one of my dream trips. I visited Tahiti, Moorea, and Bora Bora. It certainly did not disappoint.

2014 plans

I’m wasting no time by visiting the Poconos this weekend. We have a big snowstorm coming to this region, so it’s going to be the perfect time for some snowboarding and tubing. Next week, I return to Miami yet again, and I know there will be several more of those trips throughout the year.

After that, the next big trip that is currently on the docket is India in early May. I say currently because you just never know when the opportunity for a spontaneous trip will come up before then.

In the summer, I am planning a three-week visit to Europe, which will include a recap of some places, in addition to new areas. The plan currently includes revisiting London, Paris, and Rome, but also visiting Spain, Malta, other parts of France, Corsica, Turkey, and the Amalfi Coast in Southern Italy.

I’d also like to visit Central America and/or South America again; I’m thinking Mexico, Costa Rica, Easter Island, Chile, or the Galapagos Islands.

A possibility for the end of the year includes a southeast Asia trip, with recap visits to parts of Thailand, exploring new Thailand beaches and islands, and Vietnam.

Throughout the year, I look forward to visiting more nearby (and semi-nearby) areas: West Virginia, Washington D.C., Vermont, Maine, Cape May, other parts of Pennsylvania, etc.

We’ll just see what happens. What do YOU have planned for 2014?