It’s fair to say that 2018 was one of the most eventful years of my life! I had a major 6 hour surgery for endometriosis, got married to the love of my life and got a new dog!
Our beautiful wedding took place in June at Hope Street Hotel. Many thanks to all our wonderful friends and family who attended and supported us. Special thanks go to my Mom and Sy’s Dad for their support. My sister Hayley and two cousins, Anna and Freya, were such amazing bridesmaids, and I’m sure that you will agree they look stunning.
Extra special thanks also must go to our friend Alex for bringing our favourite pooch friends – Jasper and Titch! They really made it look like a celebrity wedding! I loved their co-ordinated bow-ties!!!
What – you’re still Travelling Solo as a Married Woman?!
I’d like to add that I’m so lucky to have a husband who is extremely supportive of my travels – often solo. I can’t bear the archaic views of people who ask things like – ‘so now you’re married, you’re going to calm down a bit?’ and ‘Oh, so I bet you won’t be travelling solo anymore then?!’. Or, even worse ‘Will he let you?!’ I’m still me! I’m still Templeseeker! I’m still intending on doing at least 4-6 trips per year for Templeseeker. Many of those will be solo, although of course, I hope my lovely hubby will join me for some!
And what about the Dog?!
Blake, our new dog has really helped me with my winter depression, and he keeps me exercising, which helps to control my endometriosis. I’m sure that coming home is never gonna seem so bad again with that cute face looking up at me!
Blake will stay at home with my hubby during my solo trips. Depending on the Brexit outcome (Brex-shit), we hope that our new pooch Blake will get a doggy passport to join us for some European adventures. He’s got his coat ready!
Travel Highlights of 2018
2019 was the year of some of my BEST TRIPS ever! As soon as I recovered from my surgery (recovery took a full month by the way!) Sy took me for a lovely all inclusive holiday in Malta. April and May were spent in Thailand, making the most of my 30 Day visa. Summer was spent in Czech Republic, where I attended TBEX. The final travel highlight of 2018 was our November honeymoon in Mauritius.
March 2018 – Malta
I thought I would enjoy the island of Malta, but I totally underestimated the extent of Malta’s history and religious architecture. Due to the island’s position in the Mediterranean, it has been on the receiving end of many invasions, which have contributed to the cultural and historical influences that exist on the Island of Malta today. From the stone-age temples to the Islamic architecture and the Roman Catholic Churches, it is Malta is any Templeseeker’s dream!
During my stay in March, I visited Hagar Qim temple. Between 3600 BC and 700 BC, a series of prehistoric temples were built in the form of megalithic (large stone) constructions. These temples are approximately 1000 years older than the pyramids of Egypt. This stone-age civilisation kept building more and more temples, and traces of 43 different temples can be found on the island.
We then headed to the capital city to see the stunning Co-Cathedral of Valetta.
Malta is certainly a place I would re-visit, and I would love to go to the island of Gozo.
April 2018 – Thailand
How I got into my 30’s as Templeseeker, without getting Thailand, I will now never understand! I took a Bangkok layover and then headed North to Chiang Rai, where I felt so at home immediately. Within hours of landing, I’d already visited the Blue Temple and the 9 story Pagoda of Wat Huai Pla Kang.
Taking more time in Chiang Rai than most, I was also able to explore some of the lesser known temples including Wat Doi Tong, Wat Ming Muang and Wat Si Sai Mun. Special thanks go to Connect Hostel for helping my with this part of the trip – the best hostel in Chiang Rai!
For my ancient temple fix, I visited both Sukhothai Historical Park and Ayutthaya, the two previous capitals of Siam. Sukhothai was literally one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen.
One of the most amazing parts of my Thailand trip was when my Mom met me in the last week in Bangkok and we explored the Bangkok Temples together.
Thailand – my spiritual home….I will be back!
August 2018 – Czech Republic
Prague is one of the most amazing cities of Europe and it’s one that I never tire of. I fitted in a few days in Prague before travelling to some of the lesser known cities of the Czech Republic including Ostrava and Opava with TBEX.
TBEX 2018 was a chance for me to connect with some of my favourite travel bloggers and also to meet new ones!
November 2018 – Our Honeymoon in Mauritius
The final highlight of 2018 was our wonderful honeymoon in Mauritius. The island is an eclectic mix – Geographically Mauritius is Africa, but it’s French speaking with Indian influences of food and Hinduism.
Mauritius offered us the perfect balance of sightseeing and relaxation. Cultural and historical highlights were the Fort of Port Louis and the fabulous colourful Tamil temples.
What does 2019 Bring?
I don’t yet have concrete plans for 2019, but there are a few ideas in the Pipeline! One of my goals of 2019 that wasn’t realised was a trip to South America – it’s riddled with Zika, so that may or may not feature next year. I do hope that 2019 will include a trip to Georgia or Armenia – watch this space!