Despite juggling a full-time job and a part-time one, 2016 was another great year of traveling for me. Surprisingly, it was a year of many firsts!
New continents! New countries! New cities!
Yeah, I admit.. I keep track of those little details since I’m OC like that. But those weren’t the only things that made 2016 pretty darn epic. What made the year even more special were the new experiences, challenges and opportunities that came my way.
So if you’re curious about all the major travel novelties I experienced this year, here’s a quick recap:
Earlier this year, I took my sister with me to Vietnam for our first ever overnight luxury cruise. It was a cruise along Halong Bay, which had been on our bucket list for quite some time now, so it was exciting. I’m glad we went with Paradise Cruises because they took really good care of us. Simply put, we were unbelievably spoiled by the crew! Our accommodation, food and activities were all amazing! It was definitely hard to say goodbye and disembark after our wonderful experience onboard.
This year, I was sent to Singapore again by my employer for training. But this time, I wasn’t based in the CBD. I stayed in Changi Business Park. It was my first time in the area and I thought I wouldn’t like it there because it was far, far away from the city but I actually did. The peace and quiet was kind of refreshing! Plus, there’s a shopping mall called Changi City Point in the vicinity and it houses the factory outlet stores of Nike, Adidas and Lacoste! Score!
The highlight of my year was my 2-week trip to the UK in May. It was my first time in the country and in Europe so everything just seemed like a dream come true. The most surreal parts were my visits to the filming locations/studios of the Harry Potter movies and The Game of Thrones series.
Negros Occidental, Philippines
Bacolod, the capital city of Negros Occidental, was my first real trip with my boyfriend. It was a test for us — to see if we could travel together without biting each other’s heads off. And I’m happy to announce that we passed this relationship experiment — with flying colors! Thus, after our domestic trip, we decided to go on an international one..
Yes, our first international trip was Myanmar! Since we both like exotic places with a lot of history and interesting architecture, this country was perfect for us! I’ll never forget our experience there — eating cheap but good food, exploring the ancient town of Bagan on an e-bike, climbing temples barefoot and shopping for authentic souvenirs. It was truly one for the books! The only hiccup was our cancelled hot air balloon flight because the weather conditions weren’t right during our visit. Oh well.. I guess that just gives us a reason to go back!
My family trip to Hong Kong capped off my year. I’ve been to Hong Kong countless of times but this trip was special because my dad came along! He doesn’t like traveling as much as the rest of us (me, my mom, my brother and my sister) so we haven’t traveled as a family in a while. Truly, this trip was a miracle! So since we were happy to be complete, we just had to go to the happiest place on earth.. Disneyland! Hong Kong Disneyland, that is.. It was my dad’s first time in a Disneyland resort and we were so relieved he had fun. Thank God, no complaints from him at all!
What about you? How did your 2016 go?