The 2016 Travel Highlights
While 2016 has been a rough year all around, with the dark also comes the light. It's been a hard year personally for my husband and me, but looking back, this year holds some incredible memories, especially in the travel field.
Here's a recap of the spaces and places, ups and downs, and the things in-between for Sunshine Wandering.
- Mallorca, Spain. We took a long weekend trip to hike during the offseason in this Spanish island. Read about the adventure here.
- Colmar, France. I loved this trip so much! It was the perfect girl's weekend. Post coming soon!
- At the end of the month, we received some serious news about my husband's job in youth ministry. Our world was turned upside down; all major travel plans had to come to a halt while we processed what our future over the next six months would look like.
- Rüdesheim-am-Rhein, Germany. I visited this picturesque little town along the Rhine river for a friend's wedding. They also serve the coolest coffee--read all about it here.
- This was also the month that the Brussels airport attack happened, which was (literally) too close to home for us. At the time, Josh and I lived about 20 minutes away from the Brussels International Airport, and things got a little tense there for a bit.
- Work month! I volunteer with the youth ministry organization my husband works for, and we were both busy running two different youth camps throughout the month.
- Tuscany Region, Italy. Josh's spring staff conference was held in Tuscany this year, and luckily we were able to go down a few days early to sight-see. We visited Florence, Lucca, Cinque Terre, Livorno, Montespertoli, and San Gimignano.
- We also got to visit our families in the U.S. for Josh's sister's wedding!
- Moving month! Because of some changes with Josh's work, we had to relocate from living in Belgium to Germany. Most of this month was spent dealing with the move, work adjustments, and saying goodbye to our life in Brussels.
- I picked up a part time job during our transition to Germany, which seriously hampered our travel capacity... but hey, we all have to adult sometime, right? ;)
- Frankfurt, Germany. After what felt like ages, we were able to take a short weekend trip up to the nearby city of Frankfurt for my birthday.
- Munich, Germany. Oh yes... OKTOBERFEST. This was a big bucket item list that got checked off with some great friends who invited Josh and me to go with them. And we did get lederhosen and a dirndl just for the occasion. Post coming soon!
- Cannstatter Volksfest, Stuttgart, Germany. There's a rumor that this volksfest is better than Oktoberfest, so we went down to decide for ourselves. Post coming soon!
- Paris, France. This is one of my favorite cities in Europe. Josh's sister came to visit us and we got to take her to Paris for a long weekend. Read about the best things to know before visiting Paris here!
- London, England. Over a year ago, my friends and I bought tickets to see Harry Potter and the Cursed Child on stage in London. It was a dream come true for a huge Harry Potter nerd like me. We also managed to coincide seeing the play over Thanksgiving weekend, since none of us were able to fly back to the U.S. to visit family for the holiday, which created our second overseas "Friendsgiving"!
- Erzgebirge Region, Germany. To start off a very full travel month, I took a weekend road trip with a friend to visit the Christmas markets in the Erzgebirge region of Germany. Read all about it here!
- Next, Josh's parents came to visit, so we took a week-long road trip around southern Germany. Here's all the places we stopped:
- Freiburg, Black Forest, Germany
- Triberg, Black Forest, Germany
- Stein am Rhein, Switzerland
- Meersburg, Lake Konstanz, Germany
- Neuschwanstein Castle, Schwangau, Germany
- Salzburg, Austria
- Dachau, Germany
- Nuremburg, Germany
- Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA. I took a short trip back to visit family, and then...
- Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. To top it all off, Josh and I spent the Christmas holidays with friends in the mountains. It felt SO good to be back on a snowboard!
Overall, 2016 was a really solid adventure year. With the changes with Josh's work, we're not really sure what 2017 will hold for us... but I firmly believe that travel is one of the few things that makes life richer, and no matter what, it's now a staple of our lives for the years to come.