Welcome back to the travel section of my blog.
Back in January of this year I decided to set myself a travel challenge for the year ahead. 2016 was a great year for travel… I went on 12 flights, visited 4 countries and 61 different towns/cities. Some of the fantastic places I visited were Paris, the Lake District, Budapest, Edinburgh and of course my big travelling adventure to Australia and New Zealand. I love seeing new places so I set myself a target for 2017… every month for 12 months I’m attempting to explore somewhere new, whether that be a country, county, city, town or even village that I’ve never been to before.
June has been and gone which means I’ve just passed the halfway mark (how are we halfway through 2017 already?!), so I thought I’d do a post detailing how I’m getting on with the challenge and where I have visited so far.
The first visit of my challenge was over my birthday weekend. We visited Berwick-upon-Tweed in Northumberland. We stayed in Spittal (that’s Spittal beach pictured above) which lies opposite the Tweed from Berwick and is about a 25 min walk into town.
During our visit we explored the towns of Berwick and Spittal, including some time in the amusements on Spittal beach (got to love 2p slot machines!) and we also did a lovely long walk from Seahouses to Bamburgh. As you can see below, Bamburgh Castle is beautiful!
February was a road trip a bit closer to home exploring Masham on the outskirts of Nidderdale and coming across Druid’s Temple (pictured above) which is Yorkshire’s very own Stonehenge!
Grassington was the destination for March. Grassington is a really cute town nestled in the Yorkshire Dales. My favourite thing about the town is the architecture, it has so many beautiful houses and streets like those pictured above.
It was time to go further away from home again. In April I visited Bristol in the southwest for the first time. Cat and I went to stay with our friend, Harriet for the weekend.
We fit a lot into the weekend… we explored the city, Banksy’s famous work, the suspension bridge (pictured above), had a day trip to Bath and obviously tried out a few of Bristol’s bars! #dinnerdate
May saw me travel to North Wales for a few days to see my pal, Catherine. We visited lots of places I’d never been to before. We started off exploring Conwy (pictured above) and we also went to Llandudno (pictured below). It was lovely to be back by the sea again!
We did a day trip to Portmeirion which is a tourist village designed in the 1900s in the style of an Italian village. The architecture is so beautiful and it definitely had me thinking I was in Italy, especially with the sun and blue skies!
Whilst there we walked out to the beach which we had to ourselves…
On another day we went for a nice long walk in Snowdonia National Park (see first picture below). There were barely any people around, it was so peaceful. We also stopped off in Betws-y-coed for a wander around (see photo below).
In June I visited Northumberland for the second time this year. We went to a different area for the weekend, staying near Alnwick.
We went on a boat trip to the Farne Islands which was like nothing I’d ever seen before. There were hundreds and hundreds of different types of birds (see above) and we also saw some seals. I felt like I was watching something out of a David Attenborough documentary!
I learnt that puffins shed their orange beak in winter after the breeding season and that once they’re paired with their partner they stay with them for life. Till death do them part… how cute!
We visited Alnmouth (beach pictured above) which I hadn’t been to before and also Alnwick Castle. You can’t be in Alnwick without going to look at the famous castle, it’s very grand inside and out! The Downton Abbey 2014, 2015 and 2016 Christmas special was filmed at Alnwick Castle and it featured as Hogwarts in the first two Harry Potter films. Harry learnt to fly broomsticks in the grounds!
We even bumped into Harry, Dumbledore and Hedwig whilst we were there…
So that’s where my travel challenge has taken me so far!
I haven’t yet got all my destinations sorted for the remaining months. I’ve recently got back from a holiday which saw me explore a new country. Check out my Instagram to see where I went!
If you’re into travel like I am, I thoroughly recommend setting yourself a challenge like this. You can be as ambitious as you like with it and it really encourages you to get out there and explore. We have so many beautiful areas here in the UK so you really don’t need to go far.
I hope you enjoyed this post. I’ll definitely do another one at the end of the year showing where I went from July to December.
Thanks for reading!