Hi everyone! As we begin 2018, I can’t help but get excited to plan the trips I’ll be taking this year. As you know from my previous posts, 2018 is the year that I hope to become fully remote and take my job on the road with me so I can adventure FULL TIME 🙂
I’m taking the first half of the year off from traveling so that I can really work on myself and my skills, before hopefully setting off in July / early August. I’ll have more details on what I’m doing in a later post, but below is the list of places I definitely want to hit this year!
Unless otherwise noted, all photos are either my own or from the creative commons.
I snapped this gem during an 8-hour layover in Miami on our way back from Havana in 2014. Of course, instead of sitting in the airport all day, we went to the beach!
If you’ve been following my Instagram, you know that I LOVE Miami. I used to go almost every winter with family when we lived in Chicago (because Chicago is horrible in the winter – why would anyone live somewhere where the normal winter temperature is -8 degrees Fahrenheit?). In my previous trips, I’ve stuck to the South Beach area, but I hope to go for longer and explore more of the city.
Images from Grenada’s Tourism Board website – check it out here!
2018 marks the year of my 5-year friendiversary with my Favorite Smol T! For each major friendiversary, we’ve decided to go on a cool adventure together, and this year we’ve decided to hit up Carnival in Grenada. It’s going to be an awesome trip with my favorite human of all time (yay!)
High key one of my fave photos ever – part of the ongoing #smoltstarfish series from our 2016 Boston adventure.
My Favorite Smol T is moving to Boston this year so of course I’m going to visit once I have a location-independent job. That’s like a no brainer.
4. Lisbon, Portugal
This dreamy photo makes Lisbon look like a fairytale.
When I went on my first Euro trip in 2016, I didn’t make it out this far west. Portugal is my #1 country that I want to visit this year, and I can’t wait to spend a month exploring. Lisbon will be my first stop, and then I plan to explore the whole coastline.
5. Lagos, Portugal
Photo from my hero Nomadic Matt’s Lagos Travel Guide – check it out here!
This photo should speak for itself, but in case it doesn’t, I love beaches and the ocean and beautiful places. I’ve had a photo of Algarve as my desktop background at work for months (and the other is a photo of Krabi, Thailand <3). I can’t wait to go!
6. Porto, Portugal
This photo is also from my hero Nomadic Matt – check out his Porto Travel Guide here!
I absolutely adore historic cities like Porto, and it’s high on my list for 2018. Don’t you just want to spend weeks exploring its winding streets and beautiful surrounding countryside?
7. Seville, Spain
Lonely Planet ranked Seville as one of the #1 cities to visit in 2018 – read more here.
I’ve never been to Spain, but it’ll be great to brush up on my Spanish for a month or so. Seville is at the top of my list. I mean, look how beautiful this city is? How could you skip it?
8. Madrid, Spain
This gorgeous photo from Madrid’s Tourism Bureau makes me want to just hop on a plane right now and never come back.
I’ve had so many friends pass through Madrid, either for study abroad or as part of their travels, and I’ve heard so many incredible things about this city. I can’t wait to check it out for myself in 2018.
9. Barcelona, Spain
Of course, La Sagrada Familia.
In high school, my school’s foreign language department voted me student of the year for my progress in Spanish and German (neither of which I can still speak well, lol) and gave me a coffee table book on Gaudi architecture as a congratulations. His beautiful style has captivated me for years, and I’d love to explore his works in person.
10. Ibiza, Spain
This gorgeous beach photo doesn’t even come close to capturing the awe of this place.
Ibiza is a major bucket list item for me, and has been for a long time. I can’t wait to see all my favorite DJs play and dance all night! While working, of course, since that’s how I’m supporting myself while exploring the world.
This gorgeous photo captures almost the entire country.
I’m going to stick out like a sore thumb in Monte Carlo, the playground for the rich and famous, but I want to visit one of the world’s smallest countries and add it to my list. Since I’ll already be so close, why not go?
I mean seriously, just look at the beauty of this place.
Back in the day when I used to plan travel for other people, my boss took a trip to Malta and I spent probably two weeks obsessing over photos of this beautiful little island and begging him to take me along. It’s one of the places I absolutely cannot miss this time around.
13. Piran, Slovenia
How adorable is this place?
In case it wasn’t already obvious, I love old seaside towns. I have actually been to Slovenia before, but failed to allocate enough time to spend exploring what it has to offer (so much!) I can’t wait to go back!
14. Lake Bled, Slovenia
I really hope things work out so that I’m in this region in the fall. Just look at those beautiful leaves!
Skipping Lake Bled was one of my biggest regrets from my first European adventure. I spent 36 hours in Slovenia because I missed my train out of Croatia (which is a story in itself), and then got food poisoning, so I was unable to spend as much time exploring as I wanted to. This time around, Slovenia will be my primary destination rather than a pass-through country, and I absolutely can’t wait!
15. Plitvice Lakes, Croatia
I took this photo when I visited Plitvice Lakes in the summer, but just imagine this same place in the fall when all the leaves have changed!
I wasn’t originally planning to go to Plitvice on my first European adventure (which was dumb, obviously, because this place is incredible), and a spontaneous decision brought me to one of the most breathtaking places I have ever been. I’ve been seeing a ton of pictures of Plitvice in the fall on my Instagram feed lately, and WOW. Hopefully I’ll be able to make it out there this fall.
16. Dubrovnik, Croatia
Just look at how beautiful this place is.
I skipped over Dubrovnik during my first month in Croatia, but it’s definitely one I want to hit this time around. Fall won’t be the ideal time to go, but I’m not sure when I’ll be back to this part of the world so of course I’m going to stop by and check it out.
17. Kotor, Montenegro
Is this or is this not the most adorable little town you’ve ever seen?
Kotor first caught my attention when World Nate (one of my greatest inspirations) stayed there for a month in late 2017. I love little towns right on the water, and this fits the bill perfectly. It should be far enough off the beaten track that it’ll be a quiet place to wind down the year, before heading to my last stop in 2018.
18. Island hopping in Greece
Seriously, just look at this sunset. How could I skip over the Greek islands?
I really hate going places that are super touristy, but of course I’m going to stop in Santorini. However, I’d much rather just hop around the Greek islands for a month or so before heading back to the US for a break from traveling around the holidays. Or maybe, I’ll convince my family to spend the holidays in Greece with me, because once I’m there I’m sure I won’t want to come back.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my 2018 Wanderlist! If you have any blog posts or recommendations for any of the places on this list, I’d love to hear them! Travel planning is what will keep me sane for the next few months of sitting in one place learning how to code and make myself employable.
Hanna (Bubu Backpacks)
P.S. To follow my adventures in real time, follow me on Instagram and Twitter @bubu_backpacks!