Last weekend I took a trip to Bath. Was it to have a look at the beautiful Roman baths in the city? To discover more about Jane Austen? To partake of scones in a vintage tea room?
No. I went to Bath to run 21.1km, or 13.1 miles for those of you playing in Imperial measurements. Am I crazy? It’s quite possible, although I’m certainly not the only one. 13,000 of us completed the 2015 Bath Half Marathon, and although I’m sure a good proportion of these runners were local, plenty of us travelled from far and wide to be there.
It’s not enough to do a half marathon in one’s own city these days. My first attempt was in Greenwich, London, but after that I was off to Wales for half marathon number two. I then finished a second race in Greenwich and yet another in the Royal Parks of London (a truly spectacular course), but it was the lure of a new city that had me signing up to run around Bath for a few hours on a rainy March morning.
As a travel blogger, I think I sometimes have a tendency to pretend that we all live in a fantasy world where we can travel wherever we want, whenever we want. But of course, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Sometimes, no matter how severe a dose of wanderlust we’re suffering from, travel just isn’t possible for the foreseeable future.
Instead of feeling sad about this fact of life, I try to think of the gaps between trips as opportunities to be inspired by destinations I would love to visit or to spend time appreciating the amazing trips I’ve done in the past.
If you’ve got itchy feet that can’t currently be scratched, here are some ideas to help you feel like you’re travelling (even when you’re not):
There’s something about reaching a milestone age that makes you reflect on your life and wonder whether you’ve achieved what you thought you should have by now.
I’m turning 30 in a little over a month, and my feelings as the date draws closer and closer have been a bit mixed. The other day I had a flashback to some Chinese lanterns and patterned robes and I realised that I remember my Mum’s 30th birthday party. Yikes. When she was my age she had three kids, two of whom were old enough to remember the event. And when I was younger, I thought I’d be at that stage of my life by now, too.
I suppose I should begin by claiming my portion of responsibility in this situation too. If I’m really honest it would be more accurate to say that air travel sucks…and it’s all our fault.
I have spent hours poring over vintage photos of travel, longing for the ‘good old days’, when flight was a glamorous affair. Look at any pictures depicting flights in the 50s or 60s and you’ll notice more leg room, pristine flight attendants, real food and passengers who have dressed like their flight is an occasion worth celebrating.
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So what happened?
It can be hard to find time to read in my day-to-day life. I know I should make time, and it’s something I’m trying to prioritise, but in the end travelling is the best time for me to catch up on all of the reading I’ve been meaning to do. On my reading list this year is Still Alice, Brave New World and any crime fiction I can get my hands on, but there are also some old classics I like to re-read while I’m flying or relaxing in my hotel. In case you’re looking for some new reading material, here are some books to add to your 2015 travel reading list:
Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful destinations I’ve ever visited. I spent a few days there last winter and skied my way around the picturesque lake, checking out some of the biggest and most famous resorts that are dotted around this gem on the border of California and Nevada. A few days was by no means long enough, and I have every intention of returning one day to see it in its glorious summertime state. No matter which season you visit in though, you’re guaranteed to fall in love with this magical destination. To help you make the most out of your visit, here’s your essential guide to Lake Tahoe:
Packing for a holiday in summer is no real challenge. Usually I end up throwing some extra shoes into my luggage just because I feel like my suitcase should be full, but packing for a winter holiday is another story entirely.
“I’m not a tourist, I’m a traveller.”
How many times have you heard someone make that statement?
I have listened to it more times than I can attempt to count, but no matter whose mouth it comes from I always have the same reaction: frustration served with a dash of anger.
I don’t know when it happened, but all of a sudden it seems that tourist is a four-letter word. Travelling is apparently no longer considered to be really travelling unless you completely ignore all of the iconic buildings and neighbourhoods in a destination, scoff at guided tours, refuse to pick up a map and can fluently speak the local language.
Posted in travel
Tagged opinion, travel
I don’t mind the occasional museum visit but in general, I don’t plan a trip around stops at museums and galleries. Perhaps I’m uncultured, or maybe I’ve just been spoiled by living in a city that has so many free museums to check out. Those reasons are possible, but in truth I’m just more interested in the food that a new destination has to offer. More often than not, I’m too busy eating to fit museums into my schedule. However, there are a number of stylish museums around the world that could make me put down my cutlery to spend some time perusing their exhibitions. Here are my top 10:
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and the good news is that this year the day of romance falls on a Saturday. If ever there was an excuse for a couples mini-break, now is the time to book. You don’t have to travel far to find a hotel with a difference, either. From learning a new skill together to getting some couples pampering, here are 5 of the best European hotels to book for Valentine’s Day.