At the end of every year, I like to do a balance of how my year went: the lessons I have learned, the people I have met, the goals I have achieved and the ones I didn’t.
To reflect, repent and then renew, is a task that I find crucial as it certainly helps me understand what went well and what can be improved.
I have several annual travel goals, from crossing a certain number of items of my bucket list to how many counties I want to explore in a year.
Even tho I didn’t fully achieve my travel goals for 2018, I had a positive outcome and I am proud regardless.
The truth is, trips and experiences are always the highlights of my year. It was an exciting year as I end up setting my foot in 9 countries, 2 of them brand new plus even live in more than one location.
I started the year with my old tradition of traveling somewhere in Europe with 2 of my best friends: Jason and Ivan, and we went to a brand new country: Iceland. It was the first time for the 3 of us in this incredible Scandinavian fairy tale country. It was stunning and even cross a couple of items of my bucket list.
Shortly (1 day after in fact) after my insanely freezing cold trip to Iceland I end up moving back and living – once again, at one of my favorite destinations: Bali in Indonesia. For 5 months, I had the pleasure to revisit some of my fav spots in the island but also get to explore new locations which I fell in love with. The highlight was to spend quality time with good old friends and make a bunch of new ones and of course, get back my sun-kissed golden color during European Winter – ahhhh the joy.
While in Asia, I had the chance to revisit some of my fav countries in the continent, such Malaysia where end up going a couple of times in 2018, Singapore, where I had a blast as per usual, and even managed to get a couple of weeks holiday with my good friend Sol at one of my old time favourites: Thailand, where we managed to explore new destinations such Krabi and still enjoy the hustle and bustle from Bangkok, a city I have visited dozens of times.
I couldn’t leave Asia without visiting at least one new country and the chosen one was Nepal. Has such a wonderful time visiting this incredible country and the highlight was by far doing a Buddhism retreat in the middle of Kathmandu mountains at Kopan monastery. So highly recommend it.
Once back in Europe, obviously I divided my time between England and Portugal as I often do, and managed to visit home a few times this year.
On top of that, I managed to win an incredible trip to a mystery destination (which end up being Italy) for me and my friends that was definitely a highlight (thank you WizzAir and Instagram). Was fun because only when we landed we realized where we were. Now that was a fun and unexpected holiday.
Only nonpositive experience was that had a work trip arranged to Orlando in the USA , and for the first time, I was rejected to get in a country. After my ESTA (online visa) wasn’t approved, I shockingly discovered that according to the new terrorism act under Trump Administration, if you ever visited Iran, you no longer welcome in the USA.
Well, Iran is one of my favorite countries in the World I still strongly recommend to visit.
So this is it, a summary of my 2018 traveling journey.
My travel goals are:
- To explore a minimum of 7 countries per year
- (I visited 9 YAY: Iceland, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Nepal, England, Italy & Portugal)
- To visit a minimum of 3 brand new countries per year
- (only managed 2: Nepal and Iceland)
- To travel to at least 2 continents per year
- (Traveled in Europe and Asia)
- To cross a minimum of 5 Travel Bucket list items
- (I crossed 5: To see the Northern Lights; to swim at the Blue Lagoon; to swim with manta rays in the wild, to visit the 3 Nusas, to do a Buddhist retreat).
What about you? Have you decided what your travel goals are for 2019?
I always recommend doing this exercise so you make yourself accountable for your goals and hopefully you also get the inspiration needed to keep working hard and smart to achieve them.
As for me, 2019 will is already promising to be one of the best years yet and I cannot I cannot wait to share it all with you.
Much love and travels,