Happy new year everybody! I think it’s going to be a good one. In fact, I can’t remember starting any other year feeling as excited as I do about 2015. This might have something to do with the little fact that I’M GETTING MARRIED THIS YEAR!!!…(ahem)…but it’s also because it’s going to be a year of expanding my horizons and meeting many longterm goals that I’ve set myself.
One of these goals is to get out and explore the world a bit more, and what better time to do this than in the course of a year which includes my honeymoon, mine and Rich’s 30th birthdays and a second, more settled year of living in my adopted country of Qatar which sits right in the centre of some of the most wanderlust-satisfying regions of the world.
Without further ado, here are the top 6 places that I hope to explore in 2015.
1. Muscat, Oman
Image courtesy of www.layoverguide.com
This beautiful Middle Eastern city is just an hour and a half’s flight from Doha, but in many ways it couldn’t be more different. Its volcanic geography, rugged terrain and interesting history has led to the development of a settlement which is punctuated by stunning landscapes and notable landmarks. And when it’s this close to home, it would be ludicrous not to make the trip over there for a long weekend sometime soon.
2. The Maldives
Image courtesy of www.mkalty.org
Again, the gem that is the island nation of The Maldives is so nearby that it has been tempting me with its tranquil turquoise seas since I very first landed in Qatar. A short 4 hour flight, and we could be basking in the sun on those infamous beaches, sleeping in water bungalows and hopping into boats to nip between the idyllic islands that make up this heaven-like Archipelago in the Indian Ocean.
Image courtesy of www.craveoline.com
Working for a World Cup committee means that I have been lucky enough to have been given the opportunity to travel to some fantastic locations with my job. Last year, it was Sao Paulo, Brazil for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Next on the agenda is a potential trip to Canada for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, although I am not getting my hopes up in case this doesn’t come about or I have to stay behind! However, if it does, I would love nothing more than to explore one of the host cities of Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottowa, Montreal or Montcon while watching some inspirational women play a traditionally “male sport” to a world class standard.
Image courtesy of Pinterest
We will be starting our honeymoon in July in style, with a suite in The Ushuaia Beach Hotel in Ibiza, while some of the world’s best DJs play in the open air club by the pool below our balcony. What do you think? Not very traditional huh?! This was Rich’s idea as he has so many good memories from this little party island. We both love our dance music and I have never been, so it seems like a great opportunity to start off married life with a bang!
5. The Amalfi Coast, Italy
Image courtesy of Pinterest
After partying our little socks off in Ibiza, we will be seeking a slower pace of life for a bit of rest and relaxation. And where better to do this than the Amalfi Coast? The Hotel Santa Catarina (pictured) would be the perfect place to start off with some chill-time by the pool which is overhung by the spectacular cliffs that make up the dramatic coastline, before exploring some of the islands such as Capri while sipping on a Limoncello or two. Mmmm…
6. Dubrovnik, Croatia
Image courtesy of www.villasigurata.com
Last but not least, our friends Sarah and Mike are getting married in the stunning city of Dubrovnik in September and they have organised a truly unique wedding near to the pretty views of the boats of the Old Harbour. I really hope that we will get the chance to celebrate with them, and who knows, we may even get the opportunity to travel a little further afield and explore the beautiful Dalmation Coast while we are there…
A girl can dream.
What will you do more of in 2015 to make you happy?