Best of Our 2011 Travel

December 28, 2011

caribbean coast

As the year of our gap adventure, 2011 was huge for us travel-wise. We’d like to take a moment to make some shout-outs about the things we liked best.

Tongariro Crossing

A stop along the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in New Zealand.

Best adventure activity: Climbing Volcan Villarrica in Chile
Best attraction: Iguazu Falls, Argentina
Best beer: Brain Blasta, Porterhouse Brewing Company (John) and Emerson’s Pilsner (Andrea)

climbing volcan villarrica pucon

Climbing Volcan Villarrica in Pucon, Chile

Best city: London (Andrea) and Berlin (John)
Best country: Germany
Best new country: Colombia
Best food: Jordan

mendoza vineyard

At a vineyard in Mendoza, Argentina

Best people (friendliest): Ireland
Best hike: Tongariro Alpine Crossing, New Zealand
Best hostel: The Albatross Backpacker Inn, Kaikoura
Best hotel or resort: Shangri-La Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi

salar de uyuni Bolivia

At the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia

Best meal: BBQ at our mate Klemen’s place in Ljubljana
Best Museum: Terror Háza, Budapest
Best national park: Parque Nacional Los Glaciares, Argentina

caribbean coast

On the Caribbean Coast in Colombia

Best organized: Switzerland
Best restaurant: Francis, Montevideo
Best tour guide: Raed from Jordan

ireland cliffs of moher

Rain and wind in Ireland at the Cliffs of Moher

Best town: Grindelwald, Switzerland
Best thing we saw that we didn’t know about when planning: Bozcaada, Turkey
Best wine: Chile

London Big Ben

Hanging out in London

grindelwald first switzerland

About to take on the zipline at Grindelwald First in Switzerland.

We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank the following fellow travellers we met or caught up with this year who made our time extra special. Because it’s always more about the people you meet than the places you see:

Abby (The Jungle Princess), Adam (Travels of Adam), Amar and Dipti, Andi and Lucas (My Beautiful Adventures), Andrew (Grounded Traveler), Anna, Adam and Basia in Poland, Ayngelina (Bacon is Magic), Brad (LindVentures), Brendan (Brendan’s Adventures), Cheryl (Cheryl Howard), Christina (Jandal Road), Christy and Kali (Technosyncratic), Claudia and Umit, Dalene and Peter (Hecktic Travels), Dave (Go Backpacking), Eileen (Bear Shaped Sphere), Emily and Rodolfo (Don’t Call Me Gringa), Jasmine (Jasmine Wanders), Jim (Holes in My Soles), Julie (Nueva Americana), Katrina and Dario (Tour Absurd), Kerry-Ann (Audacious Freedom), Kirsten (Aviators and Camera), Klemen, Kyle and Seba (Kyle Hepp Photography), Laura and Roberto (Travel for Love), Lucy and Michael, Marcello (Wandering Trader), Marko, Melvin and Astrid (Traveldudes), Rease (Travelated), Rob and Angelica (South America Me), Robbie and Luke, Stephanie (The Travel Chica) and Tobi.

oktoberfest maas Germany

Enjoying litres of beer at Oktoberfest


Petra, Jordan

What was your favourite travel experience of 2011?

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  • Stephanie – The Travel Chica

    Totally agree about the best national park.  It was great to meet you this past year in BA!

    • Andrea and John

      Isn’t it awesome? So wonderful to meet you too =)

  • http://WWW.SOPHIESWORLD.NET/ Sophie

    You’ve had some fabulous experiences this year. Best of luck with 2012!

    • Andrea and John

      Thanks so much, Sophie! =)

  • Greg Rodgers

    Looks like a great travel year. Happy travels in 2012!

    • Andrea and John

      Cheers, Greg! And to you =)

  • Anonymous

    Congrats on a fantastic 2011 travel year. Thanks for highlighting your favorites.

    • Andrea and John

      Thanks so much! =)

  • Cheryl Howard

    Great re-cap. You guys have had some amazing adventures! So glad that I could meet you this year and in TWO cities … Berlin and Budapest. :)

    • Andrea and John

      We’re so glad too, Cheryl!! Where shall we catch up this year? 😉

  • Marie-Eve Vallieres

    Amazing :-) You guys have seen so many great things, can’t wait to see what’s in store for 2012.

    • Andrea and John

      Thanks, Marie-Eve…all our plans aren’t made yet but will keep you posted =)

  • Andrea

    Great roundup of your travels. I like forward to seeing what you get up to next year :)

    • Andrea and John

      Haha, we do too – plans are very hazy at the moment as we don’t know where John will be working yet =)

  • Jeremy Branham

    Great year and list of adventures!

    • Andrea and John

      Thanks so much, Jeremy! =)

  • Abby

    What a year!! I like that best adventure and best beer were almost together — and top of your list.

    • Andrea and John

      Hahaha, I blame the alphabet for that one but adventure and beer really do go together well =) Was so great to meet you!

  • Cam

    Living the dream! what a year, one I am sure you won’t soon forget! 😉

    • Andrea and John

      No, definitely not! Cheers =)

  • Rob

    You’ve visited some wonderful places this year. Looks like the weather was pretty standard at the Cliffs of Moher :-)

    • Andrea and John

      Haha – would have to be very lucky to get a sunny day!! =)

  • vishnu kumar

    You guys are lucky couple…that’s a long list….everyone landing on this page can’t deny the jealousy within… You rocked…

    • Andrea and John

      Thanks so much, Vishnu!! =) Happy New Year!!

  • Michaela

    You look like you’re having soooo much fun!  And you’ve been to some amazing places.  What a great way to start my morning – wishing that I wasn’t sitting behind this computer screen!  What a push to get moving!  Thx!

    • Andrea and John

      That’s so sweet, Michaela – thanks so much! Let us know if you need help with any of your planning =)

  • Joolsstone

    Lovely set of pics, some great memories I bet. So gutted I missed you when you were here. How did Edinburgh fare anyway?

    • Andrea and John

      Me too – it was so busy for us…we’ll get back to Scotland soon, I’m sure – or catch up somewhere else =) So cold and rainy in E-burgh…not sure how you can stand not having a “real” summer!

  • Randy Kalp

    Fantastic! I’ve really enjoyed following along with you guys this year. Can’t wait to see what 2012 brings!

    • Andrea and John

      Always love your adventures too – hope next year brings even more awesomeness for all of us!! =)

  • Technosyncratic

    It was so great meeting you two in London!  And I think that photo of you two huddled in your raincoats on the coast of Ireland is awesome – very location specific.  😛

    • Andrea and John

      Cheers, guys!! So awesome to meet you too =)

  • Laura

    What a year guys! It was so great to meet you in BsAs! I really hope our paths cross in 2012!

    • Andrea and John

      Me too, Laura – keep in touch!! =)

  • Christy & Scott

    Those are adorable photos of you guys! You guys have had a great year!

    • Andrea and John

      Cheers, guys! Happy New Year =)

  • emilyinchile

    Aww, I was reading this already thinking about saying that it was so great to meet you both in amongst all your adventures, and you beat me to it! I’m so glad we did get to meet, and I look forward to our next get together, wherever that may be.

    • Andrea and John

      I can’t wait to see you again!! Hope it’s soon!!!! Happy New Year =) xx

  • Lara Dunston

    Well you two were certainly busy! I climbed the volcano at Pucon, gulp, around 18 years ago. Was tough-going but absolutely loved it until we reached the top and I sprained my ankle just 15 metres from the top (it was winter and lots of ice). My friend who dragged his snowboard up sped down and got a rescue guy to come get me on a skidoo. Though by the time he reached the guide and I, I’d already slid halfway down the mountain on my butt. Funny what a fast-moving fog and temperature rapidly dropping can do! I drank a lot of pisco that night to numb the pain. Thanks for bringing back some fun memories. I’m sure you’ve got a gazillion great ones from the last year.

    • Andrea and John

      Wow!!! What a story! At least you made it to the top…sliding down was my favourite part, haha =) Thanks for sharing!

  • Anonymous

    wow! what an amazing year!! I can’t wait to trek to some of these places!

    • Andrea and John

      Awesome!! Let us know if you have any questions about any of them =)

    • Andrea and John

      Awesome!! Let us know if you have any questions about any of them =)

  • Laurel

    You guys really have had an amazing year.  So nice to see that Germany was your favorite country!

    • Andrea and John

      John told me I would love it there…and I did! =)

  • Andi Perullo

    Thanks for the shout out darling! 2011 was amazing because I got to meet you!!! Can’t wait to see you again in 2012. Much love and safe travels!!!!!!!!!!

    • Andrea and John

      I can’t wait either!!! Here’s to many fabulous adventures for both of us in 2012!! =)

  • Jesse Pinkman

    Great picture of the donkey in Petra – and I love the scarf, and the pink and white polka dot handbag he’s wearing!

  • Flipnomad

    wow… you’ve been to so many places last 2011… Happy 2012 John and Andrea… wishing you more adventures this year:-)

    • Andrea and John

      Thanks so much – wishing you many wonderful adventures this year as well! =)


    Great shoutout for 2011.  I wish I did a post like this. =)  Love that you found the best food in Jordan. That country is really making its way into my bucket list of travels.

    • Andrea and John

      It’s not too late for you to do one =) Would love to know what you enjoyed the most last year!

  • Andrew

    Thanks for the mention. I’m just now getting through some of my reading backlog. Looks like you guys had a great year. It was great fun visiting and drinking with you two. Glad that Germany made your top country. :)

    • Andrea and John

      So wonderful meeting you, Andrew – thanks for a great time in Freiburg and we hope to see you again. Looking like Europe is a strong possibility for our next stint so hopefully we can meet you and Ali again sometime soon!

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