The biggest thing that being in Australia has taught me is: how close Europe is. Not only that but how I really have not taken the time to explore the countries which are right on my doorstep. So as I plan my return to the UK and to living there for the foreseeable, it has got me thinking about the trips I can take from London or other cities to Europe. I know within months of being back in the UK I will be itching to travel again so I have put together a list of the countries I most want to visit.
France – I have visited Normandy and the surrounding areas including Mont Saint-Michel, although I would love to go back there and take photos. I have never visited Paris or the south of France and these are the areas on my list. Taking a trip up the Eiffel Tower and experiencing this city of romance, be it winter or summer is something I’m desperate to do. Now that it is so easy to drive to France I would love to spend a week or two driving around the south coast during the summer months.
Italy – There is so much of Italy to see: Venice, Milan, Rome and the Amalfi Coast just to name a few. The colourful houses, the blue Mediterranean sea and the Italian food is enough to tempt me. There are so many different cities to spend time in: Milan for fashion, Rome for art and history, Venice for canals and romance. It is somewhere I certainly need to visit more than once to see everything.
Ireland – So close yet so far, it is beyond me why I have not found a cheap flight and explored Dublin for the weekend before now. It isn’t just Dublin which appeals to me; the rural south with its beauty and the west coast with its wild landscapes would be worth a visit too.
Scotland – I lived in Edinburgh for four months but the whole time I was there I never ventured out of the city. There is so much of Northern Scotland I would like to explore, it is one of the most beautiful places in the UK and so accessible, I have no excuse not to head up. Having never experienced Edinburgh in the summer I would love to go back during the Fringe Festival. Aside from that, the coast, the highlands, the islands and travelling by train are high up on my ‘to do’ list.
Portugal – Even as a little kid I wanted to go to Portugal, I once saw a photo of my parents at a water park and ever since then I have wanted to go to that water park. The Algarve region and Lisbon are two areas I would love to head. Maybe by the time I head here I will have learnt enough phrases of Portuguese to have a conversation in their language.
Greece – I couldn’t pick one place in Greece I want to visit because, well I want to visit them all. High up on my bucket list because of all those tranquil photos I see splashed over magazines. The white buildings, the grey cobbled paths and blue rooftops have become part of such a strong image in my head for what I imagine Greece will be like. I cannot wait to turn that image in to a reality.
Iceland – The more I’m writing this list the more I’m realising that I want to do EVERYTHING on this list like now. But seriously, apart from Paris a trip to Iceland is probably highest on the list. With hot springs, lagoons, volcanos and those gorgeous northern lights it would be very different to any place I have visited before.
Spain – Everyone who is anyone seems to have been on a holiday to Spain with their family at some point but no, not me. With cities such as Madrid and Barcelona you could easily fly here for a long weekend. I would love to explore he Mediterranean coast area too although I’m not sure about hitting up those cheap and boozy holiday islands.
Croatia – Or more specifically the Plitvice Lakes National Park – This national park has been on my bucket list for a while, as someone who loves waterfalls and lakes why wouldn’t it be? I once saw a photograph of this place in the snow and despite some of the water being frozen it looked like the most magical place ever. Needless to say I would love to visit in both seasons. Aside from this national park I know very little about Croatia but would certainly like to find out and discover more.
Monaco – What is there not to love about Monaco just from looking at the pictures of this beautiful seaside principality? Bordered by France and the ocean, it is one of the smallest countries ever with a very dense population and not to mention the booming economy. It is full of history, sunshine and the rich and famous. As well as that it is once a year being home to one of the most iconic F1 races – something I would love to get the chance to experience.
I honestly couldn’t tell you where I want to go first because as I’ve written that list I’ve realised how much of Europe there is that I want to see.