The year 2015 is coming to an end. It passed so quickly and, looking back, I feel free to conclude that it was a really good year, full of beautiful, memorable trips and experiences, things big and small that made me happy and thankful, that changed the way I see the world and people around me for the better.
The biggest trips I took in 2015 included a visit to a tiny, yet fascinating island of Malta, and a visit to a majestic Spanish region Andalucia. These travels I have yet to write about. Visiting Malta taught me how wonderful it can be to embark on a journey without specific expectations and plans and give yourself the chance to be shocked, impressed and inspired with unexpected beauties and experiences. On the other hand, Andalucia is a part of Europe that I wanted to see for the longest time. Discovering small, hidden villages and large cosmopolitan towns of southern Spain, soaking up the romantic, historic, temperamental atmosphere, the region fulfilled all my long-forming expectations and made me feel, at times, practically overwhelmed with beauty.
2015 was also a year in which I “escaped”, as much as I could, to small, familiar places in my country and abroad, in weekend getaways and short breaks. These trips reminded me, again and again, that you don’t have to travel far to see, enjoy and learn new things, to be excited and enchanted by the expected and the unexpected. It was also a year I discovered more things about my hometown, Rijeka – my closest and one of my favorite escapes – a town that never ceases to surprise and inspire me. A town that I adore.
Places I saw and experiences I had in 2015 filled me with wonderful, lasting memories and made me better, more educated, more sensitive, more flexible, more excited and more peaceful. My escapes in 2015 helped me grow as a person.
Approaching of the new year is, naturally, a perfect time for new travel plans. In 2016, I plan to go back to some of my favorite European destinations, knowing that they will offer me new wonders, and also to see some new, yet undiscovered places. I hope – no, I plan – to take every chance I get to go on a trip. And although the world is maybe a more dangerous place today and there is the inevitable shudder of fear in every travelling plan we all may make, this cannot stop us. And it will not stop us. I wish to all of you a happy, blessed, wonderful 2016 and the safe and satisfying fulfillment of all your travel plans and dreams. May all your hopes and wishes come true!