When it comes to travel, I usually prefer to visit new destinations, especially because I love being able to experience a new place and learn about a new culture. There are so many places I haven’t been, and I often find it hard
revisiting past travel destinations, because well, I’ve already been there. However, I do find that if I haven’t been to that destination in a while, it’s fun to see how it and I have both changed since my last visit. It’s also interesting to see what I remember and hold on to, as well as what I forget. I’ve experienced this quite often with London, as it’s a city I’ve revisited many times throughout the years, even if it’s just a quick trip.
A few weeks ago, I revisited Miami and the Dominican Republic, and in the next few weeks, I’ll be revisiting Amsterdam and Paris. As excited as I am about new destinations, like Portugal in the beginning of June, it’s also fun to visit a place I’ve been to, especially if I visited it years ago. Travel changes us, and that’s even more clear as we travel back to a place we’ve already been.
Since I’ve been to Miami several times in the last few years, I didn’t feel a difference with that trip, but I did with the Dominican Republic. My first time there was my senior year of college during spring break, and it was my first romantic getaway, with my college boyfriend. We hadn’t been dating all that long, but we decided it would be fun to head to a tropical island for a few days. It was also my first experience traveling with a significant other, aside from traveling with family in tow, and it taught me a lot about myself and our relationship.
We were very different people, and travel emphasized this, which is why I think traveling with a significant other is so important. Since it was so early in our relationship, I didn’t really see these differences as being deal breakers, but years later, when we lived together, I saw them clear as day. Either way, the trip to the Dominican Republic was fine except we didn’t really get to experience the island, instead we spent our days on the beach, at the pool bar, and maybe on one or two excursions off our all-inclusive resort. It was far from the way I have traveled since then.
Which is why, I was so excited to see what the Dominican Republic was all about on my trip with Fathom. The area was different and so was my experience, which I feel like makes all the difference. Prior to traveling on this recent trip, Dominican Republic wasn’t a place I planned on traveling to again, but now I’d easily head back to the island, as there’s still so much I didn’t have time to see or experience.
Because this trip to the Dominican Republic was so wonderful, it got me even more excited for my upcoming trip, where I’ll revisit two destinations from the past. The first one is less than a week away, and I visited during a different time of year, in very different circumstances. While my mom and I have both been to Amsterdam separately, I’m looking forward to sharing our trip back together
My first and only time in Amsterdam was back in 2009 to ring in 2010. To be honest, that entire trip was a bit of a blur, as my friend, Lara, and I raced around from Ireland to Brussels and then up to Amsterdam. We had a few days in town and we spent it with a canal river cruise and visiting the Anne Frank Museum. We also wandered around the Red Light District and visited one of the best coffee shops in town, maybe that’s why the trip was a bit of a blur. Either way, I remember loving the city more than I expected to and finding it quite livable.
I’ve traveled a lot since that trip and definitely think I’ve grown in many ways, which is why I am excited to revisit the city for a day before heading to France. To make the trip even more exciting, we’ll be meeting up with Jade, who was my tent-mate in Africa, and her mom, who is in town with her. It’s been years since we have seen each other, even though we planned on volunteering together in India until my trip was cancelled on me. While it’s not nearly enough time to rediscover the city, I’m still interested to see how I’ll feel during my time there. I am also excited to experience it at the end of spring instead of in the middle of winter.
From Amsterdam, my mom and I head to Avignon to spend nine days together on a Viking River Cruise to Lyon. I am beyond excited, not just because this is an area of France I’ve never been to and have always wanted to, but because I get to spend the trip with my mom. In the past year, she has been so supportive of my decision to leave my job and pursue my dreams, so this is my thank you to her. After our time together, I am going to stay in Paris for a few days before heading to Portugal to meet up with friends I met on my Fathom trip.
I haven’t been back to the city since I first visited in 2007 after graduating from college. As a graduation gift, my Uncle Kevin took me on a trip to Paris and Madrid, two places I had always wanted to visit. While I had high expectations for Paris, I actually fell more in love with Madrid and was more disappointed with Paris. I had expected to love it so much more than I did, but I was jet lagged and far from the traveler I am today, so I think that has something to do with it. I have always dreamed of going back and experiencing the city again, and I am thrilled I’ll get to do it at this time, as I’ve always wanted to visit Paris in the spring. As someone who’s traveled a bit more, I am looking forward to see how we’ve both changed in the nine years since my last visit, and I can’t wait to share that with all of you.
This year, I seem to be revisiting more places than usual, especially as the year continues on. I already have plans to travel back to Ireland to visit family and head back to India because I just miss it so much already. It’ll be interesting to see how those trips go, as well as these two listed above. Either way, I am looking forward to seeing how the places I’ve already traveled to have changed and to seeing them in a whole new light.
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