By all standards, 2012 was an amazing year for me, full of travel and adventure; just as I like it! It was my second year of continuous travel. Now that it’s over, I can look back on lessons learned and get some inspiration to make 2013 even better! I’m glad to take part on the initiative Travel Bloggers’ Best Dozen started by Lash from Lash World Tour.
My friend Leyla, the brain behind Women on the Road, nominated me to take part on the project. So without further ado, here are my best 12 posts of 2012!
1. Most Popular Post: Bologna – Street Art
I had some fun going around Bologna, Italy during my stint at BlogVille taking photos of some of the best street art that I’ve found during my journey; so I’m very pleased that this post is the most visited on my site so far. It sure as hell beats the one from 2011, which was about my LASIK surgery!
2. Most Helpful Travel Tip: Avoiding the Crowds at the Pena Palace in Sintra
Sintra is a very popular day trip destination for people visiting Lisbon; so every summer, it is packed with tourists. Really packed. Not surprisingly, people sometimes fail to see its charms. However, there are plenty of places to get lost and scape the crowds. I stayed in Sintra for most of the summer in 2012 and really enjoyed my time there.
3. A Post that was Surprisingly Successful: A Preview of the Festa di Santa Croce
I never thought a post about this peculiar festival in a small Italian village would go that far; but every once in a while I get people commenting about it and I also saw a couple of shares that surprised me. However, it does look like a very unique celebration and I’d love to see when it takes place again in 2015!
4. A Post I Thought was Underrated: British Columbia – Rock Climbing in Skaha
Anyone who knows me a bit, would have heard me at one point or another raving about rock climbing; and Skaha was one of the highlights of my cross Canada road trip adventure. However, this post didn’t get much visits or enough internet loving; but it brings me a lot of nice memories of happy times.
5. Most Controversial: On How to Cook a 10€ Mushroom
There is not really that much controversy around my blog, but I did get quite a few people questioning my mental sanity for paying 10€ for a single mushroom. But, you see, in Italy there are so many tasty and exquisite that I can’t stop myself all the time, sometimes you just have to give in.
6. Most Amusing: Rock Climbing in BC, Canada
Another rock climbing post… When I arrived to Squamish, I had a bit of trouble adapting to the new climbing conditions there. I was very nervous and I did end up breaking down a couple of times; but in the end I managed to conquer my fears and get better at it.
7. The Post I’m Most Proud Of: The Mille Miglia as a Solo Woman
Before going to Italy, I didn’t know anything about the Mille Miglia, a classic cars race that is sometimes refer to as the most beautiful car race in the world. Well, I happened to be in Bologna at the time it was happening and got to stamp the cards from the participants, most specially the one for Silvia Oberti, a remarkable woman.
8. Best Travel Story or Travel Perspective: Traveling Around Colombia on a Motorbike
During my journey, I have learned that the way one travels influences the kind of experience that we have. It was most obvious to me when I traveled around Colombia on a motorbike; we ended up as far away from the beaten track as we could have gone and because we were directly out there, local people had different reactions to us.
9. Best Travel Adventure: Hiking Mission in Anvil Island
Eventhough the summit in Anvil Island is not really that high, getting there is a bit of an adventure. Just finding someone to bring you over and pick you up can be a thrill; so it’s not something most people get to do. Also, the hike is steep and by the time you reach the top you are drenched in sweat. But the view and the pleasure of saying I’ve been there, make it all worth it!
10. Best Cultural Perspective or Insight: Barcelona – Walking Among the Dead at Montjuïc’s Cemetery
During my last visit to Barcelona, I ventured to a place I’d never been before (even after living in the city for 7 years!): the cemetery in Montjuïc. It turns out, they offer a few free guided visits each month and they give you a tour of some of the most spectacular tombs in the city. It’s amazing what one can learn from a city/culture by the way they deal with their dead.
11. Most Beautiful: British Columbia – Hike to Garibaldi Lake
One of the most majestic place that I’ve ever seen is the beautiful province of British Columbia in Canada. There, you get blue skies, snow peaked mountains and amazingly green and thick forests; not to mention the wildlife! And within that context, one of the most beautiful hikes I did was the one to Garibaldi Lake.
12. Best Photo or Photo Gallery: Parma – Cycling to the Castle of Torrechiara
When I travel, I always try to get on a bike wherever I go as it gives me a different perspective of the place and when I can mix that passion with a bit of cultural explorations, I always get the best experiences. Italy offers a perfect setting for that, with a plus for interesting history. Check out my post about the Castle of Torrechiara for a cool story and some nice photos!
Now, to keep the ball rolling I have to nominate another 5 blogs to share their own best dozen for 2012. So I’m passing it on to my buddies: