A look back at 2011

I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was just a little bit relieved to see 2011 come to an end. I’m ready for some new challenges and it’s time to start planning my next adventures. Before going in to all of the things I’d like to see and do in the future, I thought I’d write a post on some of my best travel memories, plus a few home town experiences, from the last year. It’s often easy to lose sight of the amazing places I’ve seen and the things I’ve done. I thought this would be a good opportunity to look back at 2011 and remind myself of how lucky I’ve been.

  • Listening to Fado music with locals in Lisbon. This was definitely an all time travel highlight and Portugal was probably my favourite trip of 2011. We had the chance to visit a tiny Fado House (found in an old chapel) that few travellers ever discover.

    Lisbon – my favourite European city

  • Staying at L’AND Vineyards Resort in Alentejo, Portugal. Staying at this resort was an absolute treat. Lounging by the infinity pool, drinking Portuguese wine and nibbling on cheese – it doesn’t get much better. Did I mention we were completely surrounded by vineyards?

    The perfect spot to soak up the sun

    Vineyards surrounding L’AND – I could wake up to this any day!

  • Strolling down Grenada’s famed Grand Anse Beach. This beach is considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean and rightfully so!

    The beautiful Grand Anse Beach

  • Hanging off the edge of Toronto’s CN Tower during the EdgeWalk experience. Dangling off the side of one of the world’s tallest buildings was heart stopping. This past September I tried the EdgeWalk at the world famous CN Tower. This is the very best view you’ll ever get of Toronto!

    Hanging off Toronto’s CN Tower

  • Tree top trekking just north of Toronto. Who doesn’t love zip-lining through the forest?!  We also got to try the OGO (same thing as Zorbing, which is popular in New Zealand), while we were here. Basically, you get pushed down a big hill in a giant plastic ball (picture a hamster ball) full of ice cold water… It only lasted 30 seconds, but it was a 30 seconds I won’t forget any time soon!

    Playing in the trees!

  • Playing Toronto tour guide. This summer I was lucky enough to have friends stay with me from Austria, Germany and Australia. Having international visitors is like being on vacation in your own city.

    Showing my Germany friend Lenny around Toronto

  • Poutine in Old Montreal. Nothing hits the spot like poutine and a cold beer on a sunny afternoon. What’s not to love about french fries smothered in gravy and cheese curds? This isn’t the type of thing you can eat often, but when in Montreal…  It’s a dish you have to try at least once, one that’s often most enjoyed after a night at the bar.
  • Pub crawl in Prague. This was definitely a memorable evening in Prague’s Old Town.  I crawled into bed around 5 a.m., but not before trying a shot of absinthe along the way.  If I was going to try it anywhere, this seemed like the place to do it!

    Absinthe anyone?

  • A visit to Stonehenge on a grey and gloomy day. The weather didn’t really cooperate during my visit – but it’s one of those things you can’t control. I actually thought the weather was kind of fitting. I’ve heard many people say that Stonehenge is overrated, but I’m glad I had the opportunity to see it.

    Grey and gloomy day at Stonehenge

  • Catching up with a childhood friend in London. When I went to visit London in June 2011, I had the chance to see an old friend, whom I hadn’t seen since I was about 13 years old.  My parents had sent me to visit her in London when I was 10 and I had seen her once more in Toronto a few years later. Talk about blast from the past!
  • Completing my PADI certification. Last January I received my PADI scuba diving certification while I was in Bocas del Toro, Panama. Although the diving conditions were pretty bad (there was no visibility) and I had a bit of a cold at the time (a big diving no-no), I was thrilled to get this.

    Bocas del Toro, Panama

  • Seeing sloths in Costa Rica. Have the chance to see the sloths up close and personal was something I won’t forget any time soon. They are strange but oddly cute looking animals and I just wanted to pick them up and have a good cuddle. We saw the sloths at the Jaguar Rescue Center in Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. There aren’t actually any jaguars here, but the centre is well worth a visit.

    Three toed sloth – how cute is this face?!

    The lazy two-toed sloth


What are your most memorable moments from this past year?

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About AdventuressAbroad

adventure seeker.traveling fanatic.food lover.occasional blabbermouth.travel-based PR professional.

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2 Comments on “A look back at 2011”

  1. akiwiinlondon Says:

    Sounds like an amazing year of travel and memories. I miss travelling – spent two years in a position to travel most weekends – and now that I am no longer in that position I miss it terribly.


    • AdventuressAbroad Says:

      It was definitely a great year and I’m excited to see what 2012 will hold! As I’m working a 9-5 job, I try to make the most of every single day off. I totally understand how you feel about missing travelling on a regular basis. Hope that 2012 is off to a great start for you!


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