Getting the balance between discovering new destinations and going back to old favourites can be a tricky one as a travel writer – or even just a regular travel enthusiast. You want to tick countries off that #30before30 (yep, I didn’t make that one), but at the same time, there’s a sense of warmth and homeliness in destinations you’ve made happy memories in already.
I’m favouring a balance of the two. For many of the destinations I’ve already visited, I do feel like I could head back and have a completely different experience in them. These are four cities I’d be keen to make some new travel memories in…
As a somewhat serial new destination addict, the fact that I’ve been to New Orleans twice in the past two years and I’m still itching to return really says something about the city.
And even more weirdly – the first time I checked out NOLA…I didn’t warm to it that much. It was my second visit, in May last year, that opened my eyes to how many wonderful things there are to fall in love with here. My first visit barely went beyond a walk around Bourbon Street and a quiet night out – my second, longer experience in the city took me to the Garden District, Frenchmen Street…and even Mardi Gras World. Which is ridiculous, but majorly fun.
Read More: 10 Free Things To Do In New Orleans | Four places for four meals in New Orleans | Lafayette Cemetery No.1, New Orleans | Exploring New Orleans
It seems like Barcelona’s a bit of a Marmite destination among my friends and fellow travel bloggers. Some rave about it, and some weren’t fans at all. I’m with the former camp. Staying in the Gothic Quarter was perfect for me, with architecture and art and, of course, food.
As well as the happy memories I have of being here, I’m also keen to return as a more seasoned traveller now. When I visited, I had no real experience of planning city breaks, researching or discovering hidden gems. It feels like there are a lot of those to be found in Barcelona, and I’d love to re-visit with more of a ‘traveller’ head on to find them.
This one’s not necessarily out of overwhelming love – more the fact that I visited the Big Apple 14 years ago, and my memories of being there are pretty faded. I was also 16 at the time, so couldn’t sample any of the cool bars the city has to offer – and on a college trip, so the itinerary was pretty jam-packed and rigid.
I’m super keen to go again as an adult, basically, and explore on my own terms. Because one thing I DO remember is the butterflies in my stomach when I stepped out onto Times Square for the first time, that a place could be this BIG. And I think it’s nearly time to feel that again.
I warmed to Berlin very quickly indeed. Perhaps it was the street art, the relaxed atmosphere, drinking in the park or the currywurst, but it felt like the kinda place I could fit comfortably in.
I only had two days but felt like I covered a fair amount of ground, from Brandenburg Gate and the Holocaust Memorial to the alternative vibes of Friedrichshain and the fascinating DDR Museum – but there’s definitely still a lot more I’d like to see.