Travel Destinations

Monday, January 6, 2014

Traveling the World in 2014

A new year is upon us.  A new year means new plans, new dreams, new resolutions.  Travel the World will be turning a year old in just a few months and in order to feed both my travel bug and this travel blog, I have started planning my 2014 travels.  The following is what I have planned so far for 2014, and I am looking forward to sharing it with you and hope you will come along for the ride. 

Walking in the Winter Wonderland of Madison, Wisconsin

Madison Wisconsin
Madison, Wisconsin
Photo Courtesy Steven Grams
I met Steven Grams of virtually through Twitter many months ago and we have since become friends.  Steve is a native Wisconsinite with an almost unnatural love for his city of Madison, which I mean in the nicest of ways. On a recent visit he tweeted a beautiful picture of Madison’s capitol building which peaked my interest in this city of which I had no knowledge.  When he later described Madison’s unique downtown area picturesquely situated on an isthmus between two large lakes and said the small farmers are craftsmen of cheese I was sold. I mean, c’mon, cheese!

We later hatched a plan to meet in person and Romeo and I agreed to meet Steve and his wife in Madison, Wisconsin.  Now you might expect this visit would occur in the spring or autumn, but it won’t.  That is because Steve also has an unnatural love for freezing temperatures.  (I’ll let you know after the trip if I mean this in the nicest of ways or not.)  Since I have lived my entire life in San Diego, where temperatures rarely fluctuate outside of a 30 degree range, and have never spent more than 24 hours in the snow, we came up with what I fear may be a crazy plan of visiting Madison in the dead of winter so I can experience a long weekend of real winter.  I am sure to experience a number of winter activities which may include snowshoeing, ice skating, sledding, curling, and watching a Wisconsin Badgers hockey game.  Madison is also quietly becoming a foodie destination to rival the likes of New York, San Francisco, and Portland, so we will be sampling the local farm-to-table fare as well as experiencing Madison’s craft beer scene.  And there will be cheese curds. 

Driving Through Dazzling Denmark

"Nyhavn - a canal in Copenhagen" By Scythian (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons
After having recently traveled to Thailand and China, I am ready to return to Europe.  We have never been to Scandinavia, so I was on board when I heard of Norwegian Airlines’ fare sale to introduce their new nonstop flights, including one from Los Angeles to Copenhagen. 

I just booked our flights for a two week trip, so I am excited to start planning what we will do in Denmark.  Our trip will begin and end in Copenhagen, the home of Hans Christian Andersen, and we will explore the rest of the country, most likely by car, so we can visit towns and castles and islands of the archipelago.  Who knows, maybe we’ll even spend the night in a castle!  If we can squeeze it in, we may also add a detour to Hamburg, Germany or to Sweden. 

We will be in Denmark for my birthday, so a visit to Tivoli Gardens, the second oldest amusement park in the world, will be in order.  We will sample the Nordic cuisine of Denmark, including smørrebrød, traditional open sandwiches with pickled herring, meat, and cheese.

Caravanning Through Kerala India

Tea Plantations Kerala India
Tea Plantations in Kerala, India
Photo Courtesy Kerala Tourism
This is more a wish than an actual travel plan.  If you follow Travel the World on Facebook or Twitter, you may already know about my hopes of visiting Kerala, India in 2014.  And if you have already voted for me, thank you. 

India’s Kerala Tourism Board is hosting a group of 25 travel bloggers to join the Kerala Blog Express, a two-week road trip exploring the state of Kerala from north to south.  Kerala is on the southwestern coast of India and offers beaches, waterfalls, tea plantations, and paddy fields.

I have never been to India and am longing to experience India’s culture and landscape.  Need I mention the food?  I submitted an application which was approved.  The 25 bloggers will be chosen based on votes and a review by the judging panel.  

I am excited for the travels that lie ahead in 2014 and I hope you will follow along as I explore destinations completely new to me. 

Where will 2014 take you?  Have you been to any of my planned destinations?  If so I would love to hear your experiences and suggestions in the comments. 

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Katherine Belarmino and Romeo Belarmino are the authors of Travel the World, a travel blog for the everyday working stiff. They work full-time in non-travel related jobs, but take every opportunity they can to travel the world during their limited vacation time.