Back in 2015 I created one of my first posts on this blog about the things friends from home would say/ask me while living in Europe and it caught some attention. Mostly good attention, but there was some negative feedback from people calling me selfish and ungrateful. This post could very well do the same but I'm not the kind of person to lie about what's going on in my life.
I decided to write this post because I know so many people who can relate but also in hopes that for us folks stationed overseas, we could have our friends and family back home understand how they can be supportive towards us (if they want to).
We all make mistakes, right? I know I have and I wish sometimes I could go back to redo some things in life. Particularly, I wish I could go back in time and had done some more research on my travels to either save more money or just be a more happy and successful traveler.
I'm sharing with you all the top 5 travel mistakes I've made that I just learned within the last year:
Switzerland has always been the country I said I would visit one time and one time only because it was so expensive. With that being said, it's one of my favorite countries in Europe.
Recently, I returned home from my 7th trip to Switzerland and I think I may take another trip or two before the end of this year. Switzerland is just one of those countries you can't leave alone, no matter how expensive it gets. As you can tell, I'm hooked!
Travel Goals for 2019
New year, new me? Nah, more like new year, new travel plans for me at least! My first post of 2019 is sharing with you all my travel goals for this entire upcoming year. Since this will be the last full year my husband and I will be living in Germany, we plan on making the most of our time left here. Who knows, this may just be the very last tour in Germany but I truly hope that's not the case!
I'm sharing my travel plans in hopes that I actually make it to the locations I have listed, not only to keep myself accountable (I still need to recalculate my leave) but because I really hope I won't get left stranded behind at the airport like I did on our trip to Croatia last October! Side note: I really do need to make a post about that, what do you think? Anyway, instead of getting off topic, here are my last and final major trips before moving back Stateside next year:
What's not to love about mulled wine, delicious street food, homemade trinkets, and cookies that taste like Christmas (Lebkuchen)? Of course, there are so many more things that go on at a typical Christmas market (Weihnachtsmarkt or Christkindlesmarket) that will keep you wanting to come back for more! Christmas markets are a huge deal in Germany as they encourage just about everyone to get in the spirit when Christmas time rolls around.
A flight diversion, loads of pierogis, delicious craft beers, and education/remembrance of the Holocaust is what my weekend mostly consisted of. I'm talking about Kraków, Poland as my husband and I embarked on another short weekend adventure.
Prior to moving to Germany, I was never excited to see castles, it just wasn't something that was on the top of my list when thinking about traveling in Germany. All I was focused on doing was traveling outside of the country and taking advantage of cheap flights. Once I arrived to this awesome country, I realized my thoughts about living in Germany were super ignorant. I learned that Germany had and still has so much to offer that checking out castles turned out to be one of my favorite things to do when traveling around the country.
Going to the Black Forest seemed to be buzzing and for years I would make the presumption that going to the Black Forest would be a waste of time and that I could see other places in Germany instead. Boy, was I wrong! I finally decided to make a trip to Triberg for a short weekend trip and I'm so glad I did!
You don't have to be a "city" person to understand how to take the train around Germany. Actually, I would say anywhere in Germany would be the best place to learn how to utilize public transportation because the Deutsche Bahn (DB) is efficient, reliable, and punctual. Some countries don't have it nearly as good as the Germans have it when it comes to public transportation.
Although I have lived in cities most of my life, it wasn't until I moved to Germany that I learned how to take the train, the bus, and other means of public transportation. I'm here to explain and to guide you through your next planned trip by train in Germany.
Giving Solo Travel a Second Chance
You may notice that I enjoy traveling mostly alone while my husband is away for work, but it wasn't always that way. My first solo trip was not all that I expected it to be. While it was overall a great and rewarding experience, I was not entirely comfortable traveling alone in countries far away from home (Denmark, Sweden, and partly Norway).
Most of the 5 day trip, I was nervous, anxious to get it over with, and couldn't think clearly. My mind felt fuzzy and unsure. One morning in a hostel in Denmark, I almost didn't get out of the bed because I didn't want to push myself to leave that day. Nothing outside of my own mind was influencing me to feel that way. It was me the entire time causing a ruckus in my own head.
Let's be honest, being alone without any familiar resources, can be quite scary. But after some reevaluations and having the urge to travel alone again, I broke through the intimidating phase and now, for most trips, I don't hesitate to plan it solo. Although sometimes it still does seem a bit scary to travel alone, I never regret it in the end.
Currently in Germany, temperatures are unreasonably high so all I could think of doing this weekend was to cool down at Lake Constance (Bodensee). As confusing as it may sound, it seems to me that Lake Constance either doesn't belong to any country or it belongs to Switzerland, Austria and Germany all at the same time. No country can agree on what parts of the water define the international border lines between the 3 countries! What's neat is that you can start your morning with coffee and cake in Germany, cycle or hike over to Austria for lunch in Bregenz then end the evening watching the sunset while enjoying some local wine in Switzerland. Although just a day trip, Lake Constance was a great way to beat the heat this weekend. Here's a look at what I did while I was there:
Photos used under Creative Commons from cody_der_fotomeister, alex_tiger87, mypubliclands, crosathorian, Quad Dimensional Pictures, Piero Annoni - Fotografo, Michael Panse, jyl4032, fcam, rileyroxx, We have moved! Please visit /highwaysengland, eggerbraeu, Tony Webster, Allie_Caulfield, -JvL-, Allie_Caulfield, andreasgaenger, Allie_Caulfield, Jeff Bernhard, andreasgaenger, BLMOregon, andreasgaenger, Lorenzo Blangiardi, andreasgaenger, Jack_IOM, David Holt London, danichro, donchili, CucombreLibre, Rodrigo Soldon 2, BLMOregon, frans16611