Here's the 2nd part of my Reminiscing Ships blog entry.
** ADVENTURES / MY FAVORITE PLACES **40+ countries in 3 yrs- hallelujia (if just for this, I know I am very blessed), so it's quite a challenge to pick only the BEST. I guess that's why this follow up entry took so long to finish. Not every place is outstanding, but unique in its own way & unforgettable. I will try to explain in caption why I have chosen certain places and why they hold a special place in my heart.
Also, please remember that I come from Manila, a big city, so I'm already sick of malls. I am also grateful for meeting people who changed my perspective about traveling just in the beginning of my contract. They had influenced me to see places smartly by walking a lot, riding a bike & riding the public transport, by speaking to locals and eating local food (not from touristic areas).
I was not very much impressed by the US for example, only because there was nothing special to see there but malls, highways & fast food. I love Miami though and I love that I have met friends in the US because my work took me to where they are. Certain places did not make it in my personal favorites either because they were too touristic/busy & rude to tourists.
|So here goes my list...|
|Spending the New Year 2009 w/ my relatives in Melbourne. What an opportunity. Good times! I've seen cousins I've never seen in 20+ yrs.|
|At a synagogue where Jesus washed the disciples' feet with water.|
SANTORINI, GRCKA, 2010. No contest, the BEST among the BEST! I feel like less words, more meaning.
|Our unforgettable Mykonos adventures consist of motorbiking (where we had a minor accident-ouch!), biking, ATV-ing, swimming at the nearby hotel, and eating gyros by the bay in the night. This is probably the place where I got burnt by the sun the most! Greece is highly-recommended on my side to all my friends wanting to come and see Europe.|
THE VATICAN CITY, 2010. This city has centuries worth of traditions and a visit here is worth your penny. During our visit, it wasn't chaotic though summertime. With its long history of religious culture, there's so much to marvel about Rome & The Vatican. My visit here was quite an experience, very fun, breezy, and personal. I always caught myself twirling while walking from getting too excited being surrounded by so much history. Just like a kid. Hihi. :)
|ROMA, ITALIA, 2010. Only 1 day, that's all I had :( Not enough to explore much. Like they said, so much history, so little time. "Rome, I'd really love to see you again"|
|NICE/EZE, FRANZIA, 2010. France has its own vibe, atmosphere close to Italy, but not really. France is France. Just hearing French people talk is like music to my ears. Their food is superb. And the landscapes (Nice, Eze, Monte Carlo) are over the top! I still have a personal debate if Australia or France is my most favorite country.|
|So posh without trying. Even a stand-alone ice cream corner or bread stall looks posh! One day, I hope to visit Cannes, Monte Carlo and Paris. Bucket list!|
3 places more I wanted to include but they are bottom favorites :)
San Juan, Puerto Rico, St. Maarten & Cozumel, Mexico
Phew!! Such a long entry...
But that's not all, as I have a special favorite PLACES to SEE that includes just Asian countries >> that will go on my next blog entry. I feel that maybe just maybe I can elaborate on what I enjoyed the most in Asia if I make a separate blog just for that. One of the perks of being with Ivan was the privilege to cruise with him as a guest. He was on Azamara Quest that traveled Asia in 2009, so while on a long holiday in Manila, he invited me to cruise with him for a month & I got lucky to see places in Asia I have never been before. I saw a few countries as a guest, meaning I had the luxury of time to really enjoy every port of call. I miss Asia, I miss home, and it would be great to write about it since it's the closest to my heart.
Thanks to all my 4 ships: Celebrity Millennium, Celebrity Equinox, Celebrity Solstice and Voyager of the Seas -- my second home for 3 years from September 2008 - June 2011. I was lucky to have been sent to all 3 flagship ships.
My bedroom no longer sways in the night, as we always say... but sometimes oddly enough, I miss you. Thank you for making me a permanent nomad, for teaching me to be always hungry for adventures, for those years of feeling like I was a superstar with all my travel fantasies coming true, for allowing me to see the world in so little time and realize that it's not impossible. I value all my travels, but more importantly I value all the experiences.
I share w/ all of you now the last documentary I've seen about a man from New York City who quit his job to travel for 1 year in 26 countries.
Note to everyone: NOW is the time to travel, not next year, not in 5 years or not when your kids are old enough.
I will not say my opinion about this docu, as I respect every person's style of traveling. But my tip is for everyone to travel smartly.
“When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable.” – Clifton Fadiman
“To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.” – Aldous Huxley
Wherever you guys are headed on your next destination, I wish you all Safe Travels! Ciao!