Something I have come to love about telling people I am going traveling is the moment when they get reminded of an adventure they had on their own trips away. Travelling is almost like a right of passage in my family and it is something that we all share and love together. Therefore I thought I would get my nearest and dearest to tell some of their favourite travelling stories…
My Dads trip to Venezuela
For my 50th birthday we made a very special trip to remote Venezuela to see the Angel Falls – named after a US pilot whose plane crash landed in the mist close by. It took four flights to get there in decreasingly sized planes – there’s no access by road. The falls drop a staggering 1km from top to bottom from a table top outcrop often shrouded in cloud. The best way to see them is in a small plane or otherwise a traditional long boat up the river to the base. The air is so clean the waters magnificent – it felt almost spiritual to be among it all. If you’ve never seen pictures of it you might have caught the Pixar movie “Up” which kinda does its best to recreate the beauty and wonder. A trip to treasure forever.
My brother Ben’s trip to Guatemala
One of my most memorable travelling experiences took place in small jungle village in Guatemala. After a rickety ride in the back of a pickup truck you arrive at Semuc Champey, a wondrous scene of natural pools and caves. The first adventure is a trip through the caves. Using only a hand held candle for light in caves with waist deep water, the darkness hits you quick! However so much fun is had when you weave, dive, jump and swim your way through the cave series, guided by some crazy locals. Once you emerge you come across a giant swing which propels you into the fast flowing river. After a couple of bridge jumps and sheltering from a freak storm you arrive at the pools, and from there it’s just exploring the beauty. It was an incredible day that I will remember forever, and would recommend a visit to anyone!
Vietnam- Kayaking in Ha Long Bay
My favourite travelling memory is from the north-to-south tour of Vietnam I went on this summer. It was day two of the trip and having settled into our cabin aboard a traditional junk boat in Ha Long Bay, my boyfriend and I went to spend time on one of the hundreds of islands. After a relaxing swim and a hike to the top of a viewpoint, we boarded a tender and were taken to a kayak centre, away from what appeared to be the hub of tourist activity. This was an optional activity on our tour, and my goodness I’m so glad we chose to do it. When we arrived, we were given a two-person kayak. As we were pushed into quite literally a sea of tranquility, in that moment I forgot that the rest of the world even existed and I truly got lost in the moment. We shouted and heard our voices echo, you could hear a pin drop. We weaved in and out of caves and paddled around rocks, finding mini hidden beaches. The water was so still and as the sun began to set and I felt so lucky to experience this in such a beautiful setting!