When it comes to home, London is the city I love. It stays with me through the highs and lows. It earns my loyalty and companionship. It tires but never bores. I nurture and cherish it. Perhaps one day, I will feel an urge to depart but it’s been thirteen years and so far, no sign.
When it comes to travel though, an alter ego arises – one always on a voyage to discover new lands, hear new languages, see new cultures. It is almost a taboo to admit you just want to go back to somewhere you love so when the friendly folk at Booked.net asked me to select five locations that I would love to rediscover as part of their Booked.net – Top Destinations to Go There campaign, it forced me to think about which destinations have had that magnetic pull on me. (It felt almost brutal making the cut and I could have easily doubled this list!)
New York City, USA
Hands down, this was the easiest answer to any travel question I’ve ever been asked. I first met with this electric city at the tender age of 3 and fantasised about it for the rest of my days. I’ve been twice in the last six years, re-visiting many of the same sites as well as seeing new ones and my crystal ball is hoping for a return trip within the next year or two (one can hope!)
I’ll be truthful and confess that when we were planning our honeymoon, this was one destination that we didn’t even consider. I love beaches and islands but I had so many reservations about somewhere so hyped up. It was only when we were headed to Sri Lanka anyway that Pumpkin astutely pointed out how nearby it was. As soon as we arrived in The Maldives, we realised just how wrong we had been.The islands of The Maldives are spectacular with the most glorious beaches I’ve ever seen. We were so awestruck that we didn’t need to do anything other than snorkel in the warm water, gaze at the incredible marine life and nestle our feet in the soft sand. It has only been a year and we’re already hatching a cunning plan to return….maybe even in a water villa (I’m hoping Pumpkin is reading this and digging deep in his pockets).
I think you always have a soft spot for the place you honeymoon, at least if the honeymoon overall went smoothly. For me, there was the added magic of it being my first experience on African soil and my first safari. The wonderful wildlife, habitat and animals were mesmerising but what really made the trip for us was the warmth, sincerity and kindness of the Tanzanian people. We both dream of returning one day and seeing more of this incredible country.Florence, Italy
For a long time, I proclaimed Florence was my favourite European city after I went there on a Mum- daughter trip a few years ago. I am now torn between Florence and Ljubljana but there is no doubt that the charm, magic and intimacy I felt towards Florence has left me wanting to return there to experience it all again and to take Pumpkin with me this time. Memories of the indoor food market, the ornate, century-old pharmacy, the abundance of irresistible gelaterias and open piazzas hold a fond place in my heart.Buenos Aires, Argentina
I finally headed to South America earlier this year and felt an instant affinity with Argentina’s glamorous capital city. I can’t even say that I would consider it one of the more beautiful cities I have visited aesthetically it but I felt as if it was a place I could live in (if my Spanish were a little better that is!)In some ways, it very much reminded me of London with numerous parks, markets, eclectic bars and restaurants, fashionable but not pretentious and yet it had the benefit of the obvious continental European influence with open squares, cafe culture and creamy gelato (are you spotting a theme?) If I returned to Buenos Aires, it wouldn’t even be to see the sights but rather to have more time to walk around and soak up the atmosphere of this buzzing city.
You’ve heard my choices. Now I’d love to hear yours so feel free to leave a comment and let me know where you dream of revisiting!
And as the final part of the challenge, I nominate these fabulous travel bloggers to write about their 5 chosen destinations to return to – looking forward to reading your responses!
Disclaimer: All bloggers participating in this campaign have the opportunity to win a brand spanking new iphone 6.