Summer

a year of travels: 2014

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you know those facebook “year in review” things where it shows you your year as if it knows you? (and how well can a social media website know you, anyway?) when i clicked on mine, a photo from 2013 popped up as the centerpiece and then a load of random photos: reggie watts (?!), a landscape shot of hel, poland, a still from big brother 16. just pathetic, facebook.
sometimes, if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. in that spirit, here’s my travel year in review of only my favorite travel memories… and it’s been a heck of a year and i’m feeling really thankful about now to have had the opportunity.

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january in prague with mom: showing my mom around a most beloved city of mine was a great deal of fun: playing tour guide and planning the ultimate packed two days in prague. a visit to my favorite pivovar, night walks on charles bridge, cruising around the still open christmas markets… i had such a blast and was sad to return home after the weekend for many reasons. but it was a great start to the year!

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berlinale in february! for one time in my life, a week-long break from work coincided magically with the berlinale (berlin international film festival) that i had dreamed of attending for years. and aside from seeing so many fantastic films that i could never forget, it was so refreshing to be in the city in the winter. i barely know it in the summertime, so berlin in the cold winter temps where everyone’s dressed in their black and grey coats feels just right and quite at home for me. the almost week-long trip happened to fall around valentines’ day too… a perfect way to celebrate (city) love

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celebrating the beginning of spring in the czech republic with my dad coming to visit! i actually went to see him the previous month when he was on business in brno, but this time he was able to spend three days in south bohemia with us. loads of traditional czech food, the ever-enchanting český krumlov, and a tea party in my living room.

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our easter trip to šumava (bohemian national forest) in april was like nothing else. miles upon miles of hiking a day until our feet ached, staying in near empty pension during the off-season and watching 1980’s czechoslovak music videos over a breakfast of toasties and klobasa, and seeing the beauty of lipno lake for the first time. there was some kind of easter magic surrounding my first big czech trip since karlovy vary the year before.

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leipzig in may for my birthday? warum nicht, especially if one of my favorite bands is playing at conne island on my actual birthday, preceded by an incredible dinner at zest and wandering around leipzig’s connewitz district, which honestly i enjoyed much more than the city center. one lesson learned: i don’t think i’m ever going to plan eight hours of travel on my birthday ever again!

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slovenia in june has to be one of my all-time favorite and best-designed trips i have ever taken (or planned, for that matter). we lingered in ljubjlana and i danced to the folk buskers while eating ice cream. going to the sun-drenched adriatic sea for the first time after ten months of NO OCEAN was a near-religious experience for this land-locked lady. caves, camping, alp tours, and thunderstorms– oh my! slovenia is a small enough country that i felt like i saw so much in one week while not really rushing around. it was a most perfectly paced trip.

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…and what to say about a three-week whirlwind backpacking trip through poland for most of august? it was an idea borne from a dream… a dream that i talked about so much that i was sort of forced to actually try to turn it into a reality! what a daunting task that was, and i have to tell you i was a bit nervous before embarking on such a long backpacking trip. however, there would be no other good way to really get to know this country that is so important to me, so forge onward we did to a neighbor of the czech republic that is so different from the other countries that surround it and so worth really getting to know. and once we were on the road, all hesitation melted away and i settled into the travel groove. favorite moments: coming soon!

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just days ago, i returned from a christmas holiday spent at the delightful wolfgangsee, austria. i suspected that our neighbor to the south would know how to put on a good, proper christmas and i suspected correctly. and as if because of a christmas miracle, it snowed christmas night into the next day turning austria (and much of central europe) into a winter wunderland. mountain scaling, christmas market going, glühwein drinking, and village by night wandering.

so, what’s next for 2015? it’s definitely going to be a year unlike any other i’ve ever had as i prepare and plan for my wedding in late spring back in good ol’ washington state. I’M GETTING MARRIED! after that, a bit of a travel whirlwind may take place and who knows where we’ll land? all i can do is see how things unfold. i wish you a happy & healthy new year and i hope you dream big with your travels in the coming year!

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and happy last travel tuesday of 2014! each week, us co-hosts spotlight our favorite post from the week before, and last week i was simply swooning over sara’s favorite paris photos from the year that was. if you want to stare at some fabulous parisian scenes from every season, i highly recommend taking a look.

if you’re a blogger, now’s the time to link up your travel post with us & meet some new travelers like yourself! here’s how it works: share a post about travel, link back to co-hosts bonnie, courtney, yalanda, & myself (cynthia) using the button below. add your link & hop around.

this week is a themed prompt week: favorite travel memories of 2014. i shared mine, and i am really looking forward to reading yours! (note: you don’t have to participate in the prompt if you’re not feeling it this time)

{TIPS} one post per person (save others for future tuesdays!). share the love on social media with the #traveltuesday hashtag. only properly linked posts will be featured! the last tuesday of the month will be an (optional) themed prompt.

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