Well, it’s already been a busy start to the year… but as promised I’m trying to post more in 2018! I’m succeeding so far… if only barely 🙂
I generally plan trips well in advance because there are so many good deals and I just want to take advantage of them all! As it stands, 2018 is pretty much fully planned already. That doesn’t necessarily mean that everything is actually booked or even that dates are set in stone, but the general outline for the year is already in place.
January was a pretty relaxing month. I spent most of the month in Colorado just hanging out and doing a bit of skiing – unfortunately, we don’t have a ton of snow yet this winter. I traveled to New York for the New York Times Travel Show, like I have for the last four years, and I’m writing this from my first international destination for the year: Belize!
Belize has been wonderful so far, but that’s a whole other post!
One of my goals this year is to bounce around a little less. I want to spend longer in at least a few places and a little less time on planes (but that might not actually happen due to a pretty awesome mistake/sale fare some friends and I got in on).
Here are the major trips I’m planning for 2018:
1. Russia and the Trans-Siberian
The first major trip in 2018 will take me to Russia and South Korea. Two friends (who I met in Russia almost three years ago!) and I will be taking the Trans-Siberian from Moscow to Vladivostok and then spending a few days in Seoul. During the Trans-Siberian we’re planning to stop off in quite a few cities. The entire journey is planned to take us just under three weeks. We’re booking our train tickets over the weekend and I’m pretty excited for it!
2. Cuba and El Salvador
As part of the last class for my MBA, I’m going to Cuba to consult with clients there. The Cuba part of the class actually happens after graduation, but we will be working with local businesses there all term. It’s going to be a great opportunity to apply my travel knowledge and business knowledge at the same time.
My boyfriend and I will then be spending a couple of weeks in El Salvador. We wanted to visit a new country that is: close by, Spanish-speaking, and relatively inexpensive. El Salvador fit the bill nicely. We have absolutely nothing planned so far, so your tips are welcome!
3. The Awesome Fare
A couple of my friends and I got in on a great fare from Vancouver to Milan via LA and Dubai in Emirates First Class a few months back. This trip is a pretty short one in comparison to the rest of the trips in 2018, but it’s going to be so awesome to fly in style, take showers on the planes, and spend 10 days with some of my travel hacking friends in the Balkans and Oman (on our stop-over in Dubai).
4. France, Germany, Spain, and Algeria
Last year Brendan and I fell in love with Chamonix, France, so we decided to go for a full month in 2018! We rented a cute Airbnb and are super excited for all of the climbing and hiking opportunities that await us.
Following our month in Chamonix, we are heading to southern Germany for some more climbing and hiking adventures and then to Spain for a friend’s wedding and some time with our moms!
Shortly thereafter, I’m going back to Algeria on my own for two to three weeks so I can visit outside of Algiers. I absolutely loved Algeria when I was there last year and there were so many more places I wanted to visit! I’m glad I have the chance while my visa is still good.
5. Hawaii, Fiji, and Australia
We will wrap the year up with a trip to Australia with stops in Hawaii and Fiji on the way. Brendan’s friend is living in Sydney, so we are going to hang out around there for a couple of weeks and then visit Uluru and Melbourne before flying home for the holidays.
I won’t be visiting as many new countries in 2018 as I have the past few years, but I’m looking forward to spending longer in many destinations and getting to know places better. I’ve also been working on learning a bit of French for my trips to France and Algeria and some Russian to use on the Trans-Siberian!
What are some of the trips you’re looking forward to in 2018?
Wow…..You are in Belize. That’s a place I want to visit someday. It’s interesting to have El Salvador on your list. I was looking at that a few days ago and came across this from the Canadian gov’t. website..Last updated: February 1, 2018 08:39 ET Violent crime—including homicide, armed robbery, carjacking, rape and kidnapping—is a serious problem throughout El Salvador and is escalating dramatically. A contributing factor to this increase in crime is the presence of organized criminal gangs. Gang culture has spread throughout much of the country; however, the problem is most critical in urban centres, especially in greater San Salvador. Typical crimes carried out by violent, organized street gangs (maras) include extortion, mugging, highway assault, home invasion and car theft.
While gang violence is rarely targeted at foreigners, incidents of violent assault against tourists have taken place. Maintain a high level of vigilance and personal security awareness at all times. Be discreet and avoid travelling alone, especially if you are a woman. Sexual assault is a serious concern. Assume many Salvadorans are armed. Public shootouts are common.
El Salvador has one of the highest murder rates in the world. Homicides frequently occur on public buses, on roads, in soccer fields and on farms and in private residences. The departments of La Libertad, La Paz, La Unión, Santa Ana, San Miguel, San Salvador, San Vicente, and Sonsonate have the highest homicide rates in El Salvador.
But I suppose Colorado is not safe either at least if you are a police officer. Three murdered in the first 35 days of this year.
Belize is great! I hope you have the chance to make it someday. While we’re in El Salvador we won’t be staying in San Salvador proper. Undecided exactly what the plans are as of now, but will likely head over to the coast and do some surfing.
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