I’m Back! + 2019 Travel Plans

During one of my regular check-ins with a good friend of mine, we were asking each other how one another’s vacations were over Christmas and New Year. Although neither of us went anywhere, opting for staycations, we both shared this similar feeling of having enjoyed the time off because we were able to focus on ourselves for once.  

I spent my vacation visiting museums, sitting in coffee shops in the afternoon, reading good books, going to the gym, sleeping in late and planning for 2019. And you know what? It felt GOOD! It’s incredible how you don’t realize how much work bleeds into (and robs you of) your personal time until it’s taken off your plate. Once it is, you see all the time you have to do other things, things you actually enjoy because the truth of the matter is, we all aren’t fortunate enough to be doing the things we love for a living.  

During my break as I thought about 2019 I realized how much I missed I’m Taking Off. Not only was this space intended to inspire others to find a balance between work and travel, but it was also an outlet for me; a place where I was reminded I am more than my job and a nudge to always travel somewhere new and have new experiences. 

So of course, I spent my staycation thinking about all the places hope to travel in 2019. Some trips I already have on the books, others I’m planning, and others a girl could only hope for, but I’m going to give it all I’ve got! I didn’t travel much in 2018, and I didn’t feel good about that so here is to never feeling that way again. So without further ado, here is my 2019 travel wish list!  

(1) Portland, Oregon – Every year The Association of Writers & Writing Programs hosts a conference that allows writers, editors, publishers, teachers, students and all-around lovers of the written word (like me!) to come together and network, learn, and engage with one another.  Every year the conference takes place in a different city and this year’s location is Portland, Oregon, a city I’ve long wanted to visit. When my love of books, reading, and travel collide, I’m happy!    

(2) Washington D.C. – D.C. is honestly one of my favorite cities, and I’m eager to get back. I had lunch with a girlfriend towards the end of 2018, and she expressed interested in the two of us taking a trip there, and of course, I was onboard. I HAVE to see Oprah’s Watching Oprah exhibition at the NMAAHC before it closes in June so this is a time-sensitive trip, but I look forward to it.  

(3) Europe – My one international trip in 2018 was to Colombia (I owe you a blog post about that trip!) so for the first time since 2015 I didn’t travel to Europe. This isn’t a bad thing, but that meant I didn’t get to visit my beloved Paris either. However, my plan for 2019 isn’t to go back to Paris but to explore other parts of France and visit a couple of new countries while I’m at it. Ideally, I’d like to start my travels in the southern coast of France then continue to Spain, capping off the trip in Lisbon, a city I’ve wanted to visit ever since the travel bug bit me. Sounds nice, right?  

(4) Tulum, Mexico – I decided for my birthday in December this year I want to have a girls trip to Tulum. I visited for the first time back in 2016 and LOVED it, and I’ve been itching to get back ever since, and it would be a bonus to be able to share this happy place with some of my favorite people.  

(5) Accra, Ghana – Last but not least, if 2019 REALLY wants to show out, by its end, I will be able to say I visited Accra, Ghana. This is a trip I’ve been mulling over for the past year or so, and I’m ready to make it happen. Although I usually take travel planning into my own hands, I wanted a little help with this trip because I want to get it right and I want it to be an experience of a lifetime. So, when I saw Tastemakers Africa was hosting a trip there this December I thought, “IT’S GO TIME!” only to find that it’s sold out *insert sad face*. So, I can either hope a spot opens up OR I can get to planning on my own, either way, I REALLY want this trip to happen so send good travel energy my way!  

So there you have it, my top travel goals this year although I’m open to catching a few more flight and collecting a few more stamps. Be sure to let me know in the comments below where you plan to travel this year or if you have any tips for any of the destinations above, share those with me too!  

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