Posted in Personal Travels on March 1, 2013
There have been a lot of things happening for me this year as a travel blogger and with my future travel plans. With that in mind I thought it would be nice to do a little ‘update post’ to let you know what’s been going on…
Blogmanay – Reaching 80 Million Twitter Impressions
I took part in a unique blog trip at the beginning of this year titled ‘Blogmanay’. The trip involved 20 travel bloggers and I spending New Year’s Eve (or Hogmanay as we call it in Scotland) in the Scottish capital city, Edinburgh. Aside from being just an all round fantastic trip that lasted right up until 9th of January, collectively we managed to reach 80 million twitter impressions, 1.2 million Instagram impressions, and create many blog posts all about the event. The trip was a huge success for all the bloggers involved, event sponsors, and for Scottish tourism. It made for a great start to the year to be part of such a successful campaign, but also just to see a bit of my own country for a change too. As a direct result of this trip I’ve made it a long term priority of mine to see more of my home country in future months and years to come – which I plan to mix in with lots of international travel in years to come!
Speaking at TBU Conference in Rotterdam
I’m pleased to announce that in May I will be speaking at TBU (Travel Bloggers Unite) conference in Rotterdam this year. I’ve attended TBU a few times now in Porto and Umbria, so to come back as a speaker this time in Rotterdam is a great honour. I’ve always had a keen interest in helping other bloggers and helping the travel & blogging industries progress, so to be able to share my knowledge at the conference and meet up once again with all my travel blogging buddies is something I’m really looking forward to.
I’m off to Berlin next week for ITB, a major travel trade show event. The plan is to do a lot of networking and take part in scheduled meetings with the view of creating more travel & blogging opportunities for myself and this blog. However, with Berlin being one of my favourite cities in Europe, I’d be lying if I said a big appeal of this event wasn’t simply hanging out in Berlin for a week with some of my friends! If it wasn’t for the lack of sunshine and my near-addict like need to visit new places, I’d move to Berlin in a heartbeat! If you’re looking for a cool (and cheap) place in Europe to base an online start up there is not better place. As always I’ll be staying with the folks at PLUS Hostel Berlin.
Denmark & My First New Country of the Year
It’s unusual for me to get to March these days and have not yet visited a new country, i.e. a country I have not visited yet before. Since the Blogmanay campaign finished I’ve had to put a focus on work lately, and have been at home doing that and spending some quality time with my family. However, with my itchy travel feet in full mode at the minute I couldn’t resist making plans to visit a few friends in Copenhagen at the end of the month. I have never been to Denmark. I was supposed to go for a conference there a few years ago and had to pull out last minute due to illness so it’s with much delight to finally get there and make it my first new country of the year!
Argentina & Beyond!
I booked tickets spur of the moment to Argentina recently, with departure set for September. South America as a whole is a continent I have been wanting to visit for quite a few years now. As some of you who read this blog will know however, it is only in the last year that I have actually started taking flights again (I have a fear of flying) and for a good few years my travels were focused on Europe & North Africa as a result. It was much easier to travel to those destinations without getting on a plane from my home country of Scotland. Crossing an ocean however is another matter.
In the end I decided that if I wanted to go the only feasible and affordable option was going to be getting on that flight, and so for the last year or so I’ve been building myself up to taking another long-haul flight once again by taking shorter flying journeys. In doing so I’ve discovered that the anticipation and memory of flying is actually a lot worse than the real thing! I am still indeed shitting my pants about it, but not quite to the same extent that I once was, and I’ve decided I no longer want to be a pussy!
However, giving myself until September for departure is going to prove challenging in other ways too. Patience has never been my strong point, and when it comes to travel I have always worked best when booking last minute and arriving in a destination with no plans. Unfortunately it was not quite possible to do that with this trip so it will be interesting to see how I get on and what happens between now and September without me literally going crazy and trying to lie low in some European country somewhere until the time comes.
With a long stint in South America ahead I’ve been getting the Spanish books out once again, or the Spanish apps rather, and trying desperately to cram in as much knowledge of the Spanish language as I can ahead of time! I previously lived in Seville for a summer so there are many who would think I should be speaking fluent Spanish by now. The truth is I lived in a bubble of international travellers for too long while I was there and probably didn’t learn as much Spanish as I could have. The good thing is though I understand a decent amount of Spanish and can understand most Spanish accents (as the Sevilla accent is possibly the hardest to understand in the whole of Spain) so hopefully with a lot of practice my speaking will catch up considerably soon! Either way I’m enjoying the learning of it, despite the fact that languages has never been my strong point.
So that’s what’s been going on with me lately and my future travel plans. What’s yours?