Looking back at 2014, I realized that, holy crap, I traveled around 11 different countries over the course of a year! I cannot believe that 2014 is over, it was the best year of my life, as well as the quickest!
Here are the highlights from 11 countries in 12 months!
Living in Vermont makes it pretty easy to jet across the border into Canada on a regular basis. On a whim one cold January day, Chris and I decided to pack a bag and head to Montreal for the weekend. I quickly booked a hotel and in a matter of an hour we had decided to go to Montreal, packed some bags and were en route.
We didn’t totally think it through though. The North East was in the midst of a Polar Vortex and we found ourselves darting in and out of heated buildings to escape the extremely low temperatures. Even with the weather, it was an excellent little spontaneous trip, that started out our year of travel.
Highlights from traveling Montreal
- Checking out churches and learning about the history of the city
- Eating Katz’ famous corned beef
- Battling the extreme cold, but still enjoying ourselves
The first country on our backpacking trip through Central America, and my favorite in all of Central America! We explored the country from West to East, studying Spanish, hiking volcanoes, kayaking in rivers and marveling at ruins.
Highlights from traveling Guatemala
- Discovering the natural pools of Semuc Champey
- Hiking active Pacaya Volcano
- Kayaking on the blue-green waters of the Rio Dulce
From Guatemala, we headed into Belize ready to relax on the beach and check out the sea life in the beautiful Caribbean country. My family met us on Ambergris Caye for a very fun family vacation. My time in Belize was a little skewed though; I had to say Goodbye to my family and the luxurious villa we rented, and due to the unexpectedly high cost of everything in Belize we didn’t do as much exploring as I would have liked.
Highlights from traveling Belize
- Snorkeling with sharks at Shark Alley
- Hanging out with my family
- Experiencing Carnival on Ambergris Caye
Honduras is a big country with so many different areas: Caribbean Beaches, jungles and ruins are just a few of the things you can find. We only spent 6 nights in Copan, just a little corner of the country. We checked out ancient ruins, went horseback riding and met some really great people.
Highlights from traveling Honduras
- Seeing Copan Ruinas
- Horseback riding through the hills of Honduras
- Eating. Seriously, the food was fantastic!
El Salvador was the country that surprised me the most this year. Everything about it was totally unexpected, from the people to the beautiful beaches. We worked our way down the Pacific Coast stopping in different beachside towns. We discovered La Tortuga Verde in El Cuco, an eco-resort we ended up staying at for an extra five days because it was so great!
Highlights from traveling El Salvador
My second favorite country in Central America; Nicaragua was extremely cheap and filled with so many adventures. We hiked volcanoes and went sledding down them, explored jungles, motorbiked around an island and stayed inside a volcano!
Highlights from traveling Nicaragua
Due to our money supply dwindling, we were in and out of Costa Rica in a week. Sadly, we didn’t get to see very much of this extremely beautiful country, but we did enjoy what we did see. There were definitely a lot of tourists in Costa Rica, though we opted to stay in towns that were not as well know, like Tilaran and Cahuita.
Highlights from traveling Costa Rica
- Hiking to 5 waterfalls in Tilaran
- Finding a secret swimming hole in La Fortuna
- Walking through the jungle beaches of Cahuita National Park
I returned to Panama at the end of our backpacking trip, almost exactly three years after my first visit to the country. Our plan was to spend a few days in Bocas del Toro then work our way down through the country eventually getting to Panama City where we would head home. However, Bocas del Toro proved to be such an amazing place that we kept putting off leaving! Getting down to the wire on our flight home, we booked an overnight bus and went straight from Bocas to Panama City.
Highlights from traveling Panama
- Biking to all of the Beaches of Bocas del Toro
- Drinking some quality beer at Bocas Brewery
- Exploring Panama City in 12 hours
I returned home to the US in May and spent the next four months doing quite a bit of traveling in my own country. With a base in Boston, I made many trips back to Vermont as well as all over the Northeast. Every weekend I was somewhere different: Maine, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania- it was great! At the end of the summer, my whole family flew out to California and spent a weeklong vacation in Pebble Beach.
Highlights from my USA Travel
- Spending quality time with friends and family in my favorite city: NYC
- Driving down Highway 1 in California
- Getting paid to go Surfing in New Hampshire
In September, Chris and I moved to Korea to begin a year long teaching contract and a whole new adventure. Getting off the plane in Korea was my first time stepping foot on Asian soil, and after 3 months of being here I have nothing but good things to say. I love everything about this country: the food, the people, and the way of life. We have done quite a lot in the last three months, but have so much more to explore!
Highlights from traveling South Korea (so far)
- Hiking in Bukhansan National Park
- Eating live octopus at the Noryangjin Fish Market
- Teaching adorable children and getting to hear all the funny things they say
Right now Chris and I are spending our week vacation on Palawan Island in the Philippines. Crystal Clear water and white sand beaches make El Nido an extremely beautiful place to visit. I will write more about our time in the Philippines when I return!