Wowza. It’s hard to believe that this blog turned two years old this month! It’s been a crazy, busy, frustrating and lovely ride. In honor of my second “blogiversary” (which is a “real” word according to urbandictionary.com), here’s a look back at the past year for Flirting with the Globe:
Year two has been my year of road-tripping! I strongly believe that the best way to explore a country is by renting a car. Driving allows you considerable freedom and the opportunity to veer off schedule or take a detour whenever the mood strikes you. This past year I’ve explored the following locations via road-tripping: Ireland, the south island of New Zealand, and a bit of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula (Tulum and Playa del Carmen). I also went on an epic road trip throughout the country of Slovenia with Auto Europe.
Other than these road trips, I also explored a few other international cities. I got acquainted with the picturesque city of Sydney, Australia and had the opportunity to get reacquainted with historic Athens, Greece, a city I fell in love with for the first time in 2009. To round out my last year of international travel, I also took a super quick trip back to one of my favorite cities in the world, Istanbul, Turkey, and headed to Bristol, England to see one of my good friends get hitched. Unfortunately, my time in both of these cities was extremely quick – less than 24 hours. (!)
Within the good ‘ole U.S.A, I visited Savannah & St. Simons Island, Georgia; Seattle & San Juan Island, Washington; New Orleans, Louisiana; Charlotte, North Carolina; Gatlinburg, Tennessee; Tucson, Arizona; my hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Orlando, St. Petersburg, Fort Lauderdale & Miami within the state of Florida.
There’s plenty more posts coming on these destinations, so be sure to keep an eye out. 🙂
This Year’s Top Posts
My top posts from year two of blogging were The Ultimate Ireland Road Trip, Galway: Gateway to Ireland’s West Coast, Why I Was Wrong About Warsaw (Warsaw City Guide), 11 Things You Must Do in Riga, Latvia and 5 Reasons to Love Tallinn, Estonia.
My Favorite Post
My personal favorite post from the last year was Why You Need to go to a Dude Ranch (Even if You’re Not a “Horse Person”). This is likely for selfish reasons since when I read this post I imagine myself transported back to Tucson, Arizona and upon my darling horse, Jeeves. I love to reminisce about this trip since I found it such a surprisingly wonderful getaway where I was uncharacteristically relaxed.
Top Photo on Instagram
Here’s this year’s top pic on Instagram:
Welp… making my debut in the New York Times (!!!) in year one set a pretty lofty (read: impossible) standard to exceed, but this year I was stoked to be featured by The Huffington Post and Matador Network as a “Top Female Travel Blogger Totally on the Rise.” I was also thrilled to have my Instagram account featured in an article on Matador Network, since I had recently set the goal of focusing a bit more on Instagram, a social media outlet I had largely neglected in year one. To round out the past year, my post on climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge with a terrible fear of heights was recently chosen as one of last month’s top travel blog posts by Lonely Planet’s Pathfinders.
I’ve had a lot of frustrations pertaining to the tech-side of my blog this year (which is by far my least favorite part of blogging). Unfortunately, the time and money spent on these issues have set back the other tweaks and changes I’ve been wanting to make on the site… but, hopefully these will be coming soon!
I attended TBEX North America in Fort Lauderdale last October. As much as I enjoyed the experience, I also found it overwhelming (i.e. the harsh realization of how much work I have cut out for me as it relates to this site). I found the conference motivating, but exhausting, so I haven’t attended any other conferences since TBEX, but I plan to try and hit one up in 2017.
Organized Press Trips
I typically don’t express a ton of interest in organized blogger or press trips. I assume that if you’re reading this blog it’s likely because you’re interested in my personal travel style and perspective. Press trips are usually scheduled and organized by a tourism board or brand, meaning the blogger is seeing and doing what the brand wants them to and may not necessarily be partaking in the activities that they would have chose had they traveled to the destination on their own. This said, although they aren’t my go-to for travel, I’m always open to trips that interest me and which I think would be a good fit for my readers.
I recently accepted such a trip and traveled to Athens, Greece with the City of Athens and their “This is Athens” campaign in June. I visited Athens in 2009 and had fallen hard… so I was THRILLED to have the opportunity to head back and explore more of the city and its surrounding areas. The best part was that the tourism bureau planned my solo itinerary based on my interests and I was given free time to squeeze in anything else I wanted to do and see. Luckily, my second trip to Athens was just as magical as my first. You can read the posts from my Athens trip here: The Ultimate Guide to Outdoor Athens and 5 Must-Try Culinary Experiences in Athens, Greece.
THANK YOU! You guys are the best! I’m truly appreciative of each and every time you read a post, send it on to a friend or share it on social media. If there’s something you’d like to see more (or less) of on here, please drop me a line or comment and let me know!
I’m not sure what year three has in store for me, but I can’t wait to find out!
Related Post: Flirting with the Globe Turns 1 Year Old
Was there a post you particularly enjoyed this past year? Any recommendations for where FWTG should travel in year 3?
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