I’ve been lucky enough to travel to a few different countries over the years but times are tough at the moment so I don’t think I’m going to be feeding my hunger for travel anytime soon, so instead I thought I’d write a blog post on some of the places I’ve visited over the years and try and imagine myself being back there instead of being holed up in my room.
Gran Canaria & Tenerife
Gran Canaria is one of the Spanish Canary Islands based just off the coast of North Africa, it was the first foreign country I ever visited and as a family we actually visited it about 3/4 times, its a beautiful country, covered in palm tress and exotic flowers, with sand dune beaches and clear blue water.One of our favourite places to visit there was Palmitos Park, an animal park with a stunning aquarium and lots of free roaming exotic birds and parrots, I have a vivid memory of being chased through the park by some soft of Spanish turkey. It’s definitely a country I’d love to return to.
Tenerife is also a Canary Island, I visited Tenerife in 2010 with my mum and my sister, I was actually responsible for booking the holiday so I was a bit nervous whether everything would go to plan but it turned out to be the nicest hotel I’ve ever stayed in, the swimming pool was actually on the roof of our hotel room, unfortunately we didn’t realise this until we had walked around the complex for 30 minutes looking for it before eventually asking a staff member who pointed the stairwell to us which was opposite our door.
One of the most unique features of Tenerife are its Black sand beaches, yeah you heard me right, the beaches are black due to the many volcanoes they have on the island. Now, as beautiful as they look they have one very big downfall, the sand is absolutely scorching hot. All you see is people running for their lives down towards the sea so they can cool off their burning feet. However, the beach that was situated by our hotel also had another problem, the sea was very rough, so rough that it broke off parts of the cliff every time a wave hit and big boulders would come smashing into unsuspecting visitors, I myself got a lucky escape when a boulder smashed into my leg only coming away with cuts and bruises. The lifeguards actually had to keep running up and down the beach with wheelbarrows collecting rocks out of the sea, let’s just say they definitely couldn’t relax and enjoy the scenery for one second!
I’ve been to Disneyland Paris quite a few times but I’ve only ever been to Paris once, I went with my school when I was 12 years old, it took us 12 hours to get there by coach and the hotel we stayed in was absolutely dire, when we arrived at check in we were told there’d been a power cut so we had to lug are suitcases up the stairs in pitch black, it just so happened that they were painting the walls at the time so we also had to make sure we didn’t touch anything, I’m sure are teachers were relieved when we made it to our rooms without a fatality! However the rooms were just as bad, I remember my friend and I were woken up at 5 every morning because somebody had cut holes in our curtains and the sun would stream through, there was also an entire packet of digestive biscuits smashed up and poured over the whole entire top bunk bed, we were one of the lucky ones though, another room had bloody hand prints on the bathroom walls and one found their missing toilet seat in their bed. However, even though the hotel was like something out of a horror movie, Paris itself was like something out of a dream.
We did all the touristy stuff, visited Notre Dame, went to the top of the Eiffel Tower, which by the way is terrifying if you have a phobia of lifts. One of the most incredible experiences though was taking a boat trip down the river Seine, they time it perfectly so just as you go past the Eiffel Tower it lights up, covered in thousands of sparkling lights.
Unfortunately I don’t have many pictures to reminisce as when I got my photos developed 80% were covered by my finger on the lens, never trust a 12 year old with a disposable camera! Oddly enough the only picture I have of myself in Paris is me with my head in a stock!
My holiday to Florida was definitely a once in a lifetime experience and something I will always look back on with fond memories. I’d always dreamed of going there and still to this day I can’t believe I’ve actually been! Everything in America was bigger and better than anything I’d ever experienced, from theme parks, to food, to the personalities of the people we met! It was everything I’d dreamed of and more, my favourite part of the holiday was definitely visiting Universal Studios, most notably Harry Potter World.
I’ve always been a huge Harry Potter fan so it was an incredible place to visit, it really felt like you had stepped into the Wizarding World, well except for the American accents and 30c temperature. There was one thing that I’d been waiting to do during the holiday and that was ride the Forbidden Journey ride, now let me tell you the que for this ride is worth doing even if you don’t ride the ride at the end of it, walking around a life sized Hogwarts with holograms of the characters and real talking pictures were unbelievable and even though we were queing for an hour, I don’t even remember feeling like we had to wait at all because there was so much to do and see. Now when we got to the front of the que I remember the adrenaline running through me, this is what I’d been waiting for. Well the feeling was short lived because the ride itself is absolutely terrifying. I suddenly had this huge animatronic dragon breathing smoke into my face and then the spiders, oh god the bloody spiders, I’d been scared enough watching the film scene with them, it was another thing having them inches from my face so at that point I squeezed my eyes shut and didn’t open them again until the ride was over. It was still awesome though.
Anyway that’s a couple of my favourite holiday destinations that I’ve been lucky enough to visit, if you’re planning a holiday then I’d definitely recommend visiting one of the places, fingers crossed I’ll be able to travel some more one day but for now I’ve just got to try and enjoy the glimpses of summer here in the UK!