I’ve declared it already: 2016 was the best year ever. Since 2011, I’ve summarized my travel-filled years (see my posts from 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015), but no year has ever come close to 2016 in terms of the amount of travel I’ve been able to fit in. Brace yourselves: this may be a long one!
Here’s a fact I bet you didn’t know about me: I’m a published Los Angeles Times writer. Big deal, right? Uhhh, perhaps let me explain first. In fourth grade, my teacher asked the class to write a blurb about our most memorable vacations. She submitted our assignments to the L.A. Times, and I got my first brush with fame when mine was published in the children’s section. So, okay, perhaps I can’t exactly include this feat on my resume, but, hey, it’s technically true!
The topic of my paragraph? A series of trips that even today hold a very special place in my heart. For several summers in a row, when I was aged roughly nine through twelve, my extended family cruised the Hawaiian islands with American Hawaii Cruises on the S.S. Independence.
Living overseas, one of the things I miss most about living in my hometown of Los Angeles is the buzz of the entertainment industry. Over the years, I’ve attended talk show tapings, been a seat filler at major award shows, wandered down from my UCLA dorm room to spot celebrities at red carpet movie premieres, and stopped to watch film sets I’ve accidentally stumbled across.
Another year in the books already! Just a few days into 2016, I’m going to make a bold prediction: this will be one of the best years of my life, on account of a big travel announcement I’ll save for an upcoming post. That said, 2015 was also quite the year. Though it didn’t take me to as many destinations as other years have (see my recaps of 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014), I marked my second anniversary of moving to Australia and continued exploring the country and beyond. Here are my travel highlights from 2015.
November is already here, believe it or not, which means that NaNoWriMo is under way, and I’m challenging myself to draft a post per day for my NaNoWriMo Travel Blogging Challenge. I look forward to reminiscing about past trips and finessing my blogging skills, and stay tuned as those posts are published over the next few months. But before I get deep into the challenge, I’m taking a look back on my trip home last month as well as sharing a very exciting announcement about where I’m headed next.
I’ve been a bit quiet lately, as I just returned from a trip home to California – more on that later! So while I’m getting caught up, today I feature a guest post from Tim Aoki, one of my very best friends from college whom I met on the first day of freshman year when he lived down the hall. I am an absolute Disneyland fanatic and former Annual Passholder (before I moved infinity and beyond miles away), but Tim puts my Disneyland appreciation to shame by visiting on a weekly basis. If there’s anyone who knows the ins and outs of the park, it’s him.
Disneyland is the happiest place on earth, but it’s also the busiest place on earth, depending on when you go. Being an experienced Annual Passholder, I’ve accumulated a number of tips and tricks that will greatly enhance your experience at the park. These tips will hopefully help you get the most out of your time spent in Walt Disney’s original Magic Kingdom!
I’ve been to some truly exotic locations across six continents, fallen in love with cities thousands of miles from home, and found myself fascinated by foreign cultures few get to experience first-hand. But, at the end of the day, if you were to ask me which travel destination has meant the most to me over the years, I’d have to tell you that it’s a lackluster town of 3000 people a mere four-hour drive from home.