Travel Tuesday: 2011 in review

As we’re reaching the end of 2011 and the new year quickly approaches, I thought it would be a good time to look back over the past year and appreciate all that I have been able to do and see. I’ve realised, after taking the time to reflect on 2011, how full this year has been. I have been lucky enough to visit some incredible places, eat some outstanding cuisine, meet wonderful people, attend fashionable events and experience new and thrilling things. It’s been a great year and so much has happened that there’s no way I can fit it all in one post; but I will try to sum it up. So without further ado (but with an apology for a long and picture-heavy post), here’s a snapshot of the highlights of my 2011:

January:

January 2011: Cambridge

We started the year with a trip to one of England’s prettiest towns; Cambridge. I have fallen in love with this picturesque and history-rich university town and am hoping to go back in 2012.

January 2011: Maze. Source: online.wsj.com

Brendan and I were lucky enough to eat at Gordon Ramsay’s Michelin-star restaurant Maze in London, thanks to a Toptable deal. I tried pigeon for the first time (I don’t think I’d order it again in a hurry) and we enjoyed some great food and wine together.

February:

February 2011: Jack the Ripper Tour

We learned some creepy London history when we took a Jack the Ripper walking tour through the streets of London’s East End. It was chilling to walk where the notorious serial killer walked and imagine what life was like back then for London’s residents.

February 2011: meeting Alexander Wang

Thanks to twitter, I attended an event at Liberty London and met the talented young American designer, Alexander Wang, who was friendly and down-to-earth.

March:

March 2011: blog birthday!

In March [a bird in the hand] celebrated it’s 1st birthday! I celebrated with a pink cupcake and a walk along London’s South Bank!

March 2011: Yellowcard at Brixton Academy

Brendan and I went to an iconic London music venue, Brixton Academy, to see Yellowcard play. They were fantastic – here’s hoping they’ll come back to London next year!

April:

April 2011: Wardrobe Challenge

I decided it was time for another wardrobe challenge, and this time was joined by some friends around the world! London experienced an early summer when I was in the middle of the challenge so I got to break out my summer wardrobe…yay!

April 2011: Royal Wedding

The UK went wedding mad, as Prince William and Kate Middleton celebrated their wedding. We sat in Hyde Park with thousands of other revellers, and we all gasped and cheered in unison as THAT Alexander McQueen dress was unveiled!

May:

May 2011: Pinterest. Source: christineclemmensen.blogspot.com

In May I discovered the wonderful world of Pinterest. If you’re not signed up to this inspiring site, contact me for an invitation. And don’t forget to follow me here.

May 2011: Vintage Fair

I visited the funky retro Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes for the Vintage Fair, and picked up a fabulous dress!

June:

June 2011: Oxford

After visiting some friends in Birmingham, we stopped in Oxford for a few hours to check out the pretty university town (I still prefer Cambridge though).

June 2011: Kensington Roof Gardens

I celebrated the beginning of summer at The Roof Gardens in Kensington. Our experience at the restaurant, Babylon, was poor, but spending time outside in the beautifully manicured gardens amongst the pink flamingos was wonderful!

July:

July 2011: Tour de France

We spent an unforgettable two weeks in July travelling around France watching the Tour de France, eating amazing food and seeing some stunning sights (oh, and we also made a stop in Pamplona for some running with the bulls!).

July 2011: Interview with Christine Wada. Source: thefilmpilgrim.com

After seeing Bridesmaids twice at the cinema and loving every minute of it, I interviewed the film’s costume designer, Christine Wada about working on the fabulous outfits featured in the movie.

August:

August 2011: Paris

I went on a girly weekend to Paris with my friend Shannon and we spent the two days eating amazing food, shopping, visiting Versailles and riding on the back of a Parisian’s scooter. Awesome.

August 2011: iFabbo London Launch

iFabbo, an organisation whose aim is to bring bloggers and brands together, launched in London with an event at The Powder Room in Soho. Cocktails, cupcakes, makeup and goodie-bags were the highlights of the night!

September:

September 2011: Prague

We met some friends in Prague for a weekend in the breathtakingly beautiful city. I could not stop taking photos of the spectacular scenery, and the city quickly skyrocketed towards the top of my list of favourite cities (it’s in third place, beneath New York and Paris).

September 2011: London Fashion Week

London Fashion Week was upon us once again, and this time I was given a ticket to the Ashley Isham show. It was an incredible experience!

September 2011: Run to the Beat

I did it! I actually ran a half marathon! I think it was the hardest thing I have ever done. I swore I’d never do it again, but here I am 3 months later writing ‘run a half marathon’ in my 2012 new year’s resolutions!!

October:

October 2011: Switzerland

My Dad visited from Australia and took Brendan and I to Mürren, a beautiful town in the Swiss Alps. As well as eating delicious fondue, visiting a James Bond set and marvelling at the majestic scenery, I tried something new and scary: paragliding! Despite my initial terror, it was a fabulous experience.

October 2011: Madrid

We spent a weekend visiting some of my relatives in Madrid. Despite never really loving Spain, I was surprised by how much I loved my time in the country’s capital city. We experienced the real Spanish way of life (complete with dinner after midnight), had some delicious tapas and saw the ancient city of Segovia.

November:

November 2011: Fashion Foie Gras for Coach Event

November was a month saturated by blogger events! I went to the Fashion Foie Gras for Coach launch, the Motel Rocks blogger party and the London Blogger Christmas Meetup. Fun. So much fun!

November 2011: eating out. Source: mueslilover.com

We did a lot of very cool things in and around London in November. We ate my favourite ever brunch at Kopapa, watched The Lion King, saw Incubus at Ally Pally and devoured some authentic Spanish tapas at Dehesa.

December:

December 2011: Riga

I spent a weekend with friends in the Latvian city of Riga. I didn’t really have any expectations before the trip, but after 48 hours of great food & drinks, wonderful restaurants and bars, Christmas markets and a lot of incredible architecture, I was besotted!

December 2011: truths about the London Underground. Source: tfl.gov.uk

Don’t come to London unprepared! As part of my new ‘Travel Tuesday’ series, I shared ten pearls of wisdom about the famous London tube and how to survive it!

And that’s my 2011 in a nutshell! I can’t believe I did all of this in one year, and I’m excited to see what 2012 holds for me. I hope there is much travel, mouthwatering food and some fabulous fashion!

What was your highlight of 2011, and what are you hoping for in 2012?

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