My blog is officially a year old today! I began working on ‘She Walks the World’ on the first day of 2015– it was my new year’s resolution. Fast forward 365 days later, and it has been a wonderful year of sharing my travel experiences, writing about my passion and from time to time, reading and reminiscing the adventures.
I believe this post is needed for my 2015 travel reflections, and also to list down my aspirations for the coming year. In 2015, I visited 3 new countries, and revisited 6. I learned to dive. I saw the northern lights. I rubbed shoulders with the koalas, kangaroos, huskies and tarsiers. Looking back, it has been one hell of a year!
This is my top 10 countdown of my favourite travel moments of 2015– I want to always remember them, and I want to share them with you.
10) Solo Travel in Phuket
This was the only solo trip I made this year, and it was for a diving adventure in Phuket. I spent a week visiting the popular spots on the island, diving in its beautiful waters, enjoying the Thai hospitality and just soaking up the crazy Phuket atmosphere. To more solo travels in 2016!
9) Spending Valentines’ in Bohol
This is a special memory because it was the first time I spent Valentines’ in a romantic location, and I chose the beautiful island of Bohol in the Philippines. We had a wonderful weekend waking up to the sound of the waves every morning, and spending time on the beach the entire day. Just me… and him.
8) Meeting the Koalas and Kangaroos in Melbourne
I’ve been to Australia a couple of times, and the one animal I’ve never gotten the opportunity to see is the koala. Don’t ask me why, but it’s always a missed chance. So on my trip to Melbourne in 2015, I made it a point to see a koala– and I even got to get up close and personal with them for a photograph. I fed the kangaroos too!
Read about my encounter with the koalas here: My Day in Ballarat, Australia: Of Gold and Koalas
7) Staycations at Pool Villas
I’ve been blessed to have spent many getaways this year in beautiful pool villas. Some of these retreats were places I have always wanted to stay at; and for some, I was lucky enough to be invited as a guest. Pool villas always excite me– after all, there is no better luxurious way to waste time than to lie by the pool all day long. So here’s hoping for more villa stays in 2016.
Read my resort reviews here: Hotels and Resorts
6) Learning to Dive in Pulau Redang
This has to be one of the most significant events for me in 2015, or even my life– it has partially shaped how I travel. From being afraid of the underwater, to loving the bubbles– travel trips have now included dive trips. There’s been a lot of those this year, and I intend on making it more in 2016.
Read about my first dive experience here: My Passport to the Underwater World
5) Getting Lost at Sea in Pulau Weh
Of all the dive experiences I had this year– this one stands out the most. No, it’s not spotting a huge sea creature. No, it’s not an encounter with a shark. It was getting lost at sea in Pulau Weh. I aborted a dive, and upon resurfacing, the currents pushed me out further and further away from the shore. My buddy and I were bobbing around for 45 minutes before they found us. Thankfully, we were saved, and safe.
The dives were great though, read about it here: Diving in Pulau Weh, Indonesia
4) Getting to Know Penang
This is an important travel moment for me because I finally decided to explore my very own backyard. Penang is a state in Malaysia, and only a 5-hour drive from the capital city of Kuala Lumpur where I live. Yet, in all these years, I have never taken the time to actually explore the city. In 2015, I did… and I fell in love with Penang. In 2016, I plan to visit more local places.
Read about my local discoveries here: Mynn’s Top 10 Historical Buildings to Visit in Georgetown, Penang
3) Walking Through Fallen Leaves in Hokkaido
I have always wanted to go to Japan– and thanks to AirAsia X, I finally had the chance to. And what better way to experience the beauty of Japan, than in Hokkaido… during autumn. I had the most amazing time admiring the ‘koyo’ fall foliage, taking pictures of the vibrant colors around me and eating the delicious fresh seafood.
Read about my Japanese autumn here:
Autumn Colors in Sounkyo at the Daisetsuzan National Park
Video: She Walks the World in Hokkaido, Japan
2) Sledding with the Huskies
Who would have thought that I’d be sledding through the snow somewhere in the Arctic circle, pulled by a whole team of champion huskies? This has got to be one of the most exciting things I’ve done in 2015, and one that I won’t forget. The one-hour husky ride was bumpy and cold… but oh so exhilarating.
Read about the fun time I had with the huskies here: Tromso, Norway: My Husky Sledding Experience
1) Witnessing the Northern Lights
Aurora Borealis takes the top spot of my most memorable travel moment of 2015. There is nothing like standing in minus degree temperatures, staring up at a sky full of stars, and watching a myriad of colors dancing in front of you. The long journey to the edge of the Arctic circle just to see this natural wonder was worth it; and I thank the heavens above for giving me clear skies and the opportunity to witness it in all its beauty.
Read about the beauty of the northern lights here: Tromso, Norway: Chasing the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights)
Thank you for joining me on my travel adventures and for dropping by my humble blog. Here are some stats for the year 2015:
Number of posts: 74
Most views per day: 323
Most visitors from: Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, USA
Most popular blog post: Mynn’s Top 10 Places to Visit in Busan
And in 2016, I want to travel with a little less planning, a whole lot more spontaneity.
HAPPY 2016 TRAVELS!