|Elephants leaving water hole in Etosha National Park, Namibia|
As a new year arrives and we start planning travel
adventures for 2019, it’s a good time to look back over the past year at the
places and activities we experienced. There was a good mixture of domestic and
international travel and even a little time off between trips. This is what 2018
looked like for Larry and me.
We arrived in Nepal after spending two weeks,
including Christmas and New Year’s Eve in India. As many of you know Larry
became ill and spent eight days in a hospital in Kathmandu, but before that
happened, we traveled to the beautiful resort town of Pokhara.
|View of Fishtail Mountain from our resort in Pokhara, Nepal|
|Walk trails beside water and through these lovely gardens in|
San Antonio, Texas.
was a month for recovery, but later we took a few days to visit San Antonio, a
favorite city of ours that (fortunately) is just a little more than an hour
away. Early spring blooms added color to the Chinese Garden near the San Antonio Zoo.
Spring Break we took a grandson to several notable sights in Central Texas
including Enchanted Rock near Fredericksburg and scenic Pedernales State Park
where rocks and water combine for a perfectly scenic romp.
|Climbing Enchanted Rock|
spent a glorious week in Carmel, California exploring beaches, parks, and
forests of Big Sur along Highway One. This is one of America’s most spectacular
road trips, with plenty of trails to hike and new sights to see around every
bend of the coastline.
|Limestone formations along the Pedernales River|
finished that driving trip in San Francisco with adventures including a round
of golf, wine tasting at a vineyard, climbing the tiled steps on 16th
Avenue, and wandering around Golden Gate Park.
|Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur can be hard to find, but it's totally worth a visit|
|Spring blooms at Golden Gate State Park in California|
may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s certainly fun when treating a
granddaughter to the experience. If you go early enough in the summer before it
gets too hot and crowded, you’ll come to understand the Disney magic that makes
this place so well liked.
|Night time in Epcot just prior to the fireworks show.|
July: It was time for a trip to a less-traveled destination. We headed to the exotic country of Namibia, where we would not only see many species of African wildlife but would also have the opportunity to witness—and climb--the world's highest sand dunes, the red dunes of Sossusviel.
|Climbing the magnificent red sand dunes in Namibia|
African journey continued into Botswana, a growing destination for incredible
wildlife safaris. We stayed in multiple remote camps and were able to observe activities
aimed to conserve Africa’s resources and preserve wildlife species like lions,
elephants, and leopards.
we had been to Ireland and London, England several times, we wanted to see more
of the United Kingdom, so we booked a cruise that sailed around the UK and
Ireland. Despite the hurricane that interrupted our trip in Scotland, it was a
pleasant journey that ended with a day in Bath and the Cotswolds.
|We watched this leopard stalking prey in Botswana.|
|Incredible Giant's Causeway in Ireland|
had booked a cruise on the magnificent Rhine River that started in Basel, Switzerland.
Since we had five days between cruises, we spent that interlude in Geneva and
went paragliding off a mountain in the Alps of France. Then we enjoyed the
towns, castles, and vineyards as the ship sailed to Amsterdam.
of the month was spent visiting children and grandchildren in various stateside
locations, but one excellent Texas day trip we recommend is to Lost Maples
State Natural Area. Fall colors made hiking on trails in the park an event to
|All along the Rhine River are picturesque vineyards and castles|
|Autumn leaves are especially beautiful in this rare Texas stand of maples.|
in Central Texas, we celebrated the holiday season with an evening drive to
Johnson City for its Festival of Lights. We also walked down Austin’s iconic 37th
Street and reminisced about visiting to the famous Trail of Lights at Zilker
Park. This annual event never ceases to amaze as it grows better every year.