It is hard to believe that in a few hours 2015 will be over. Even though I think this year was the fastest in my life so far, at the same time so much has happened too. In 2015 Packing my Suitcase turned 1 year, I visited 8 countries – one of them for the first time – over 15 cities in 3 different continents and took 16 flights.
I love looking back in time, and as last year, I thought it would be great to look into Packing my Suitcase’s best moments of 2015. Shall we?
After a calm New Year’s Eve at home and lots of snow, I headed to Brazil for 2 weeks and spent some quality time with family and friends. I also enjoyed the time to get some vitamin D to survive the next cold and dark months in Germany. I showed you a little bit of my hometown, Fortaleza, and suggested 11 things to do there.
February was a very cold and dark month here in Munich, but W, Enzzo and I escaped for a weekend to the stunning Bayerischer Wald and stayed at the amazing Landromantik Hotel Oswald. There we had a very relaxing weekend with delicious food.
Also in February, I introduced here on the blog my monthly reviews, which are published every last Friday of the month. Among them are restaurants and accommodations, some paid by myself, others sponsored, but nonetheless with my honest opinion.
March was one of the few months that I spent entirely at home, but when I posted one of the most read posts of the blog: 9 reasons why I hated living in Geneva. Who knew? Apparently I’ve been helping a lot of people with this one, but also making some of them mad at me, sorry, it was just my experience.
The first week of the month was Easter and I finally made it to one of the places on the top of my bucket list: Copenhagen. Denmark was my country number 30, it was also when I had my first Airbnb experience, and I couldn’t help but compare Hotels x Airbnb.
Many of you might have noticed that exactly during my trip to Copenhagen Packing my Suitcase was migrated from WordPress to self hosting, it was a big and very important step for me and the blog. Speaking of the blog, on 21st of April Packing my Suitcase had its first anniversary, and on the celebration post I got so many positive feedback from you, it really made me happy and gave me motivation to continue.
On the first days of May, W and I went on a diving trip to Sharm-El-Sheikh, in Egypt. It was an unforgettable trip in many ways, not only because it’s where I celebrated my birthday, but also because I went diving on 2 of the most famous dive sites in the world, the stunning Yolanda Reef and the famous shipwreck Thistlegorm. It was also when I did my dive number 50!
Yes, May was a very special month, and after Egypt, we had a weekend getaway in Tuscany, and I tell you, I completely fell in love with this stunning Italian region, especially with San Gimignano. It was a short weekend, but it left us craving for more, so we really hope to come back sometime.
June was mostly spent at home, but in one of its weekends I went to Austria especially for the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Spielberg. It was amazing and it certainly is one of the best circuits I have been so far. It is only a few hours away from Munich, the ticket prices are great for Europea standards and I really hope to go back one of these years.
The first days of the month took me to Paris, after almost 2 years since my last visit to the French capital. There I celebrated 3 years of being married to a German and had a very special photo shoot with the lovely and talented Minh Ha Nguyen, photos which are now the official ones you see on my profile here on the blog.
After this trip I gave you some tips to save money while in Paris, suggested 8 amazing spots to view the city from above and 20 things worth doing there, and reviewed the lovely restaurant Le Coupe-chou.
I spent August enjoying one of the hottest summer ever registered here in Munich. Sitting by the Isar river, having breakfast on a terrace, trying to keep Enzzo cool, trying out new restaurants and cafes, and drinking some Spritz to refresh.
September & October
At the end of September I went once again to my home country, Brazil, for 3 weeks. This time I went to one of my favourite cities, São Paulo – yeah, call me crazy – then I went to Fortaleza, explored some beaches around and then went to Natal, all to spend some time with my family and friends. During this time my traveling dog stayed once again at the lovely dog hotel Hundepension Maier.
On my way back to Germany I had one of the longest traveling times in my life, a total of 36 hours, which included 2 connections, 3 flights and I got to spend 10 hours in Madrid. When I finally arrived at home, I was very happy to see how Munich looked amazing during this autumn, and it inspired me to show you in pictures the 4 seasons of the year in Munich.
Exactly one week after returning from Brazil – yeah, call me crazy again – I went to London to attend the World Travel Market, and of course, to explore the city a little bit. Last time I was in town I was 18 years old, so it was great to return after almost 10 years, I guess it was about time!
While in London I got to stay in one of the apartments of Marlin Apartments, which had a stunning view to the Shard, and at the Blakemore Hyde Park Hotel in the lovely Bayswater neighborhood. I also managed to go up the London Eye and not cry – instead I focused on the champagne.
It was great to catch my breath and recover my body – I was very sick while in London – before December and the Christmas Markets season here in Munich. I had enough time to feel better and travel once again, this time I went hiking in Austria, in a mountain near Innsbruck. The place was stunning and we got to stay at a mountain cabin – a first time for Enzzo and I. We had great fun, but 2 days were not enough, though all the hiking left us really tired.
Also in December, I finally made it to Nuremberg’s Christmas Markets, one of the oldest and largest in Germany, and got to enjoy a traditional Bavarian breakfast in partnership with With Locals, a very cool way to get in touch with the local culture.
The year is still not over – even though it’s already the 30th – so while this post is being published, I’m flying on a plane to Egypt once again. This time we are going to Hamata, south of Marsa Alam for another diving trip. This place is still secluded and it’s supposed to be a dream for divers, with very rich marine life. Will I finally see a dolphin while diving?
There will be another first in this trip, I will finally visit a big Egyptian city – so far I only went to coastal towns – and together with Memphis Tours, W and I will take a day trip to Luxor. Anyone has been there before?
And as I was writing this post, great news came up: Packing my Suitcase was recommended by Checkin, Trivago’s blog, as one of the top 16 travel blogs to watch in 2016. What an honour to be mentioned among such amazing people!
Friends along the way
It was no doubt an unforgettable year and I have met some wonderful people along the way. I had the opportunity to meet a few bloggers in person after knowing each other only online, and I would love to give them a shout:
- Rosemary from Le Chic on Rose – in Munich
- Anna from Go Home and Away – in Munich
- Lolo from California Globetrotter – in Regensburg
- Candice from My Seasoned Travels – in Munich
- Virginia Duran – in Madrid
- Ting from My Travel Monkey – in London
- Ayla from Mrs Ayla’s Adventures – in London
- Shikha from Why Waste Annual Leave – in London
- Lucy from On the Luce – in London
- Camilian from Destino Munique – in Munich
- Patricia from Um casal na Alemanha – in Munich
- Van from Snow in Tromso – in Munich
It was a pleasure meeting you all in person, and I hope that in 2016 I will meet many more of the bloggers I only know online.
As 2016 knocks on our doors, we need to be ready when it enters, which means, it’s time to think ahead and make some plans to put in practice. In order to do that, I need the help of each one of you who follows the blog and you who is occasionally stopping by.
How? Let me know below which topics you expect to read more here on the blog in 2016, you can either pick up to 2 of the described below or suggest one yourself, also if you like to specify something, feel free to do it. Don’t worry; the voting is anonymous so I won’t know who suggested what. Your opinion really matters to me, and I promise to try to make your wishes come true:
Thank you all for the support and a Happy New Year!