A beautiful Christmas tree in front of Bruges' town hall, in Burg.
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Our favourite travel moments of 2014

We’ve found it really interesting to look back over the year at all the places we’ve visited. As all the contributors at Ladies what…travel work full-time we’re unable to jet off at the drop of a hat, but we do manage to squeeze in as many trips as we can – both close to home or a long-haul flight away.

Sometimes we forget how much we get to do and how lucky we are! Thankful for all the experiences we’ve had through our blog, here are a few of our favourite travel moments from 2014…

A stream close to the Artist's Valley.
A stream close to the Artist’s Valley.

Falling in love with Wales

March 2014 saw a weekend away at Ynyshir Hall, mid-Wales. Spring had truly sprung, and three days of fresh country air and sun on my face left us feeling really invigorated!

We’d not really ventured into the welsh countryside before, having stuck to the M4 and Cardiff, but really fell in love with its rolling hills and untouched beauty. Driving up the tight country roads to the Artist’s Valley was amazing, as was our visit to RSPB Yyns-hir Nature Reserve, with hares bounding across our path and discovering carpets of bluebells.

It didn’t hurt that we were staying in luxury in a suite at Ynyshir Hall and were treated to a full-on 11 course tasting dinner in its renowned restaurant – people actually fly by helicopter to come there for dinner!

Nighttime light in Markt, Bruges.
Nighttime light in Markt, Bruges.

In Bruges

Yes, we did watched the movie before zipping over the Channel to visit Bruges! This was our first real trip to Belgium, our only other experience having been a service station stop-off on our way to Germany for the school foreign exchange trip. And we weren’t disappointed.

Bruges really is like a “fucking fairytale” as Ken from the film might say. And coming over to see it in all its Christmas glory really adds to the experience. We rented a little apartment in the centre of the city for a couple of days and from there used it as a base to explore its cobbled streets and beautiful building as well as eat way too many waffles.

Although the Christmas markets themselves were pretty disappointing, the city itself was a joy, and we’re eager to return to see more of Bruges as a few days was just not enough to fit all the sights in. We also need to get our hot chocolate fix!

Read about our trip to Bruges

Experiencing green Spain in Cantabria

Belgium wasn’t our only trip over to mainland Europe this year. We also visited the Cantabria region of Spain as part of #CantabriaBlogTrip, organised by Spain in the UK and Cantabria Infinita.

It was one of those trips where everything seemed to align – the weather was glorious, the food was amazing and the other attendees were all great travelling companions for our quick trip around the region.

Altamira artwork

We were treated to a fantastic range of activities – from a sailing lesson on the Bay of Santander to a visit to the beautiful village of Santillana del Mar.

The highlights were a trip to the amazing UNESCO caves at Altamira and getting to spend a morning with the keepers of Cabárceno Nature Park, where we fed the elephants and giraffes and got to fly the park’s amazing birds of prey.

Cabarceno nature park giraffes

Glamping at Somerset Yurts

Closer to home, we spent a fantastically relaxing few days at Somerset Yurts in Devon. Again, blessed with great weather for the time of year, we explored the local area before heading back to our cosy Mongolian Yurt.

somerset yurts

You can read more about our stay here!

 

By day Co-Editor Keri is a freelance journalist and copywriter, but spends most of her free time either travelling or planning her next trip!  A complete travel fanatic, she has a love of tropical climates, wildlife and afternoon tea (hence the creation of her Global Afternoon Tea Challenge!)

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