There’s no doubt it has been a great year for travel in my world, and it has seemed a very long year – the Egypt trip in January 2011 seems an age away. I’ve also moved base from London to Melbourne in Australia for awhile so it has been a busy 2011!
The Egypt trip was certainly an amazing way to start 2011. In fact visiting the Red Sea, Cairo and Luxor to get a glimpse of this incredible country was probably a highlight of my travel life. This photo is of the magnificent temple of Karnak near Luxor. We were fortunate to go to Egypt only a few weeks before the revolution started on January 25th and it makes me sad to think what the Egyptian people are still going through, and to think that it may be many years before it is safe to travel there again.
Skiing in Switzerland was next on the agenda in February, we were based in Nendaz and explored the many, many wonderful trails in the mountains here. This photo was taken from the top of Mont Fort, from where you can see Mont Blanc and the tip of the Matterhorn.
Carmona is an unspoilt and beautiful little town about 20 minutes drive from Seville’s airport. One of those Andalusian towns that benefited from Spain’s golden age and is still full of charm.
February also saw me hopping across to Romania to see both the city of Bucharest and the countryside blanketed with snow. It was deeply cold but wintry Transylvania and Bran Castle were mysterious and beautiful.
After a sad farewell to London in March it was off to the southern hemisphere for some sunshine and warm weather. We caught the tail end of the summer 2011 here at a beach on the east coast of New Zealand’s north island.
While it was winter in Melbourne we journeyed to the iconic Uluru or Ayers Rock. Here I loved the richness and variety of wildflowers, surrounding Uluru and also in the (dare I say it, even more beautiful) Kata Tjuta or Olgas.
Spring in the southern hemisphere and its time to start exploring the state of Victoria. There are have been a few visits to Daylesford, the quaint little spa town west of Melbourne. Horse riding, cafes, vineyards, lavender farms and the ubiquitous hot springs – delightful.
In the Wimmera we went rock climbing at Mount Arapiles and enjoyed Australia’s beautiful bush and wildlife as well as the outstanding climbing opportunities.
A visit to the Yarra Valley to enjoy the Healesville Sanctuary and just a few of the many boutique vineyards near Melbourne was certainly inspiring. This is Australia’s oldest wine region and I think I will need a few more visits in 2012 before I’m ready to share my views on the delights of the Yarra Valley.
The Great Ocean Road is an iconic Australian road trip and a big one to tick off the Australian bucket list in 2011. Sunset at the 12 Apostles near Port Campbell did not disappoint.
So I’m feeling very thankful for yet another brilliant year of travel in 2011 and looking forward to more adventures in 2012!
By Natasha von Geldern