15 flights, 26,524 kilometres, 5 trips, 6 countries, 24 days spent travelling, 7 new World Heritage Sites visited. That was the statistics for 2014.
Readers of this blog can read stories from (with intro text to the first article):
Hardanger, Norway in May: Read about two and a half days on the road in picturesque Hardanger, Norway. It is spring, the fruit trees are in blossom, the snow has still not melted on the mountain tops, and the sun is shining.
Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan in June: This article is written and published shortly before I embark on a fourteen days road trip in the Central Asian republics of Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. The objective is to present my itinerary. It is a Classic – Marco Polo was here before me.
Cyprus in August: For a large number of visitors to Ayia Napa only one thing counts: “Living la vida loca”.
Budapest in September: The famous monumental sights of Budapest are easy to find. For a change, join me for a walk to the nice little gardens and courtyards.
Stockholm in December: The old city of Stockholm (Gamla Stan) draws many visitors to the capital of Sweden. Deservedly so. However, there is more to see and this article will highlight more attractions.
As shown on @Sandalgram (Instagram): My travels in 2014 included clockwise from top right #budapest #stockholm #kyrgyzstan #cyprus #hardanger
In June I launched a Norwegian language page called Sandalsand på norsk, featuring travels and things to see and do in Norway. I was busy rest of the year giving it a proper content, and I am very content. Unfortunately the effort has been at the expense of the English language Sandalsand website and the YouTube video channel.
Still, I released 13 new travel videos on my YouTube channel, but there should have been more. The collection of 186 videos have now been watched more than 190,000 times, and there are 204 subscribers to Sandalfilm.
The publications on Sandalsand were not really bad, in numbers. In fact, 185 articles were published on Sandalsand in 2014, 156 on the new Norwegian sub-domain.
In late 2013 I opened accounts at Twitter and Instagram and they have been growing steadily all through 2014, in content and in followers. As the fireworks went up across the world I had typed 461 tweets and instagrammed 67 images. The Sandalgram account has 200 followers and Sandaltweet has reached 3,041.
What about 2015? No plans are fixed. My bucket list is long, my dreams are many, and some of them will be accomplished.
Happy New Year!
Bucket list (future trips)
Preferred destinations, unprioritised sequence. It is very like my 2013 round-up, except that some bullet points have been ticked off.
- USA from New York to San Francisco (or only a weekend trip to New York). Flights between 3-4 places and perhaps a train journey across the plains just to sense the distances (2-4 weeks). The US has always been on the bucket list, but has always been postponed. Perhaps when I retire?
- South Asia (India, Nepal and Bhutan), preferably each country on different trips. Bhutan is the oldest of my dreams and is now opening up to tourism. I should go there before it’s too late, like I’ve done to Tibet, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and Cuba. (2-4 weeks)
- The old Norse settlements in the West: Shetland, Orkneys, Faroes, Iceland and Greenland (or only the two latter). (1-2 weeks).
- East Africa south of Sahara, with safari as part of the trip (2-3 weeks).
- West Africa from Senegal to Nigeria. It would have been nice with a road trip through half a dozen countries, but presumably quite difficult. The outbreak of Ebola has made this an even more difficult trip. (3-4 weeks plus).
- Namibia. I really want to see that desert, those sand dunes and the abandoned towns.
- Morocco. All those towns on the coast and in the mountains.
- Vietnam. I have visited most of SE Asia, but not Vietnam yet.
- Pacific island hopping on a RTW-ticket to make the journey cheaper (3-4 weeks).
- Caribbean island hopping, in particular the southern part and the Antilles. Perhaps even on a cruise, which is another of my taboos. Visiting multiple islands is not easy to accomplish apart from with airplanes, and prices are not favourable (2-4 weeks).
- Greece, to Athens and the Pelopponese on a road trip to eight World Heritage Sites. This may be limited to three days, plus a day or more in the capital, hence a long weekend, preferably in spring.
- Israel: Been here before, long time ago, but I spent too little time. Round trip in the country for a week, perhaps inclusive of a beach holiday with the family by the Mediterranean or Red Sea. (1-2 weeks)
- Georgia (country): Their food and wine is good, the Black Sea coast is fine for sun bathing and the interior has some nice cities and villages in the Caucasus.
- Saint Petersburg: Extreme treasures and immense museums, as well as a fascinating history in every respect.
If you can dream it, you can achieve it. (Zig Ziglar)
February Update: A week in New York City is coming up in April, and two weeks are planned for Bhutan and Nepal in September.