Most people are ready to pretend like 2016 never happened. To that I say ‘pish and posh’, because 2016 helped me add six incredible countries to my postcard collection – all thanks to bagging the best job in the world as a Topdeck Trip Leader.
This year, instead of making New Year resolutions to nab myself a gym membership or find a boyfriend, I’ve complied a list of the places that I want to go and that YOU NEED to see across the world in 2017 – along with the ultimate list of things to do, as told by someone who has seen it all (well, almost!).
1. Visit the Museum of Alchemist and magicians in Prague.
Prague has some really awesome connections to alchemy and magic, and even though I’ve been incorporating this strange and mystical history into my Prague walking tour, (just ask my groups about the crazy house painting!) I want to investigate even more in 2017.
2. Feel teeny tiny in the Blue Mosque, Istanbul.
Over the last few weeks I’ve been torn about visiting Istanbul but at the end of the day, if we stop travelling to places we love, then what happens to the world? So I’m off to Istanbul to ogle at the Blue Mosque, cross the Bosporus and get to grips with the history of the Ottomans and Constantinople.
3. Ride a camel.
I love camels. Like, a lot and want to visit them in the Middle East. Those perma-pouts, the little bum wiggles and those goofy eyes – they’re just so damn silly and beautiful. I know they kind of stink, but so did my ex boyfriend…
4. Feel poor in Europe’s largest collection of Royal treasures at The Green Vault, Dresden.
All my past passengers will attest to the fact that I am obsessed with all things Royal – so when I learnt last month that Dresden is home to the biggest Royal treasure collection in Europe, I lost it. Need. To. Go. Now.
5. Take a tour of the Sewer Museum in Paris.
How many times can you say you’ve taken a tour of an old sewer? Exactly.
6. Visit Copenhagen for Lego and the Lidkoeb Crime theme bar.
Copenhagen has been on my radar for a while but I’ve never gotten round to going. Well, 2017 will sort that little problem out. I want to make my own mini-me out of Lego and drink cocktails while solving detective type problems and all that jazz.
7. Hangout with monkeys in Berlin.
SO many Trip Leaders are in deep and lustful relationships with Berlin but I’m yet to be won over by the German capital. I’m hoping that sharing a Diet Coke with a monkey in Berlin Zoo might help.
8. Discover the prohibition style bars in Rome.
Due to the nature of my job, I don’t always get time to explore Rome’s nightlife, but rumour has it, there is a brilliant collection of prohibition style bars (like The Jerry Thomas Project) scattered across Rome.
9. Climb St. Peters Basilica Dome in Rome.
My knowledge of how to get fat in Italy is extensive and I should’ve gotten around to this essential climb, but, erm, well I’m just too lazy to have bovverd’ until now.
10. See the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
I’ve been itching to get into the Uffizi but just haven’t had the chance. This year I WILL get my art-appreciation face on.
11. Watch the sunset from Cinque Terre.
Are you picking up on my Italian theme yet? I LOVE Italy and even though it’s super touristy, I want to watch the sun rise AND set over Cinque Terre to see those gorgeous houses glow.
12. Experience the ancient city of Petra, Jordan.
By the end of February I’ll have crossed this bad boy off my life bucket list, and you should too! I’m SO excited to get my inner-Indiana Jones ooooon!
13. Get to grips with Egyptian history.
It’s taken a good year and half get to grips with basic European history so I want to learn all about Egypt and the Middle East to see how it fits into the craziness that is ‘world history’.
14. Visit Bethlehem.
Admittedly, I’m not religious at all. I am, however, fascinated by the whole concept of it so a trip to Bethlehem is definitely on the cards.
15. See the sunrise from Mount Sinai
Fact: every picture of Mount Sinai looks like something from an epic film set. This year, I want to get amongst it and Instagram until my phone dies.
16. Rock ALLLL the kasbahs in Morocco.
My week in Instagrammable Marrakech was exotic, inspiring and I loved (almost) every minute of it. Already, I can’t wait to go back for more.
17. Find the BEST macaron in Paris.
My passengers know of my love of French pastry and the ability to bang on about desserts for upwards of 20 minutes – so if you ever want to know the history of the madeline or the macaron, I’m your girl. I actually have a list of the Top 20 French Patisseries and I plan to slowly but surely tick them all off. Maybe I should go for that gym membership after all…
Ready. Set. JET.
Step into an unforgettable 2017 HERE.