Childhood travel adventures (part 1)
31st May 2016
When I write about travel here on my blog I always write about recent adventures, but I was travelling the world long before I was writing a blog, and I feel like there are many stories to share.
So, for a change, I’ve decided to write about the holidays I went on when I was a child, and I will be sharing these over a couple of posts as there is quite a lot to share. These posts will include lots of photos from when I was a child so if you love 90s/early 00s fashion then you’d better stick around!
I went abroad for the first time when I was 3 years old and we went to Menorca (see top picture). For my dad, my brothers and I it was our first experience of flying (my mum had been to Spain when she was younger) and so it was quite an adventure. The holiday was clearly a success as every year therefore after we went abroad.
Some of my earliest memories are of this holiday. For some reason I remember going to a Burger King on the island and getting one of those paper crowns they used to give out. I mean, trust me to remember something food related.
For the next two years we went to Spain. The five of us went along with another family of five that we were good friends with. And because we decided to do these holidays as cheaply as possible, we didn’t fly to Spain, like most normal people would. No, we went by bus.
Yes, I just said bus. It took us over 30 hours to get from Shropshire to Spain, and it was an absolute nightmare. I mean, who even does that?! I certainly don’t recommend it!
Regardless of the journey, I have fond memories of these two holidays. I vividly remember going to Barcelona and hoping on the tour bus to see the sights. Here I am looking enthusiastic at the Nou Camp. My enthusiasm for football has definitely grown over the years.
After two years of holidaying with another family, we decided to go it alone and return to the more favourable method of transport for long distances (aeroplane). We went to Majorca and to the eastern side of the island.
I’ve visited Majorca many times since our first trip in 2001; mainly to hop on a cruise ship. But there were a couple of times when we stayed to Palma Nova and I have fond memories of visiting this amazing crazy golf place. Years later I went on to have golf lessons and I can’t help but think this is where it all began…
In the same year we went to Majorca for the first time (2001) my parents took me to Disneyland Paris. Just like when we went to Spain, we went via a bus (why??!!). I’ve never really been much of a Disney fan but I think everyone loves Disneyland. My favourite rides were Big Thunder Mountain, Star Tours and It’s A Small World, but I’m dying to go back now that I’m tall enough to ride Space Mountain.
I insisted on buying and wearing that hat for the entire trip, because Disney isn’t Disney without silly hats, am I right?
The year after we went to Portugal and it ended up being just the three of us. I remember getting quite upset about the fact my brothers weren’t there but I remember having a fantastic time on that holiday.
We spent a lot of time exploring the Algarve, and little did I know at the time I would I return to this particular part of the country 10 times after this initial trip. I still love Portugal very much; I just need a break from going there for a while!
When browsing though my old photographs I found this one of me in the town of Lagos, sitting by the fort…
And then I found this one taken 8 years later in the same location…
That first visit to Portugal had a real impact on my life. I saw dolphins (in captivity) for the first time and I was instantly drawn to these beautiful creatures. It was on this trip that I decided to that I wanted to dedicate my life to dolphins. Of course, I then decided I wanted a different career path when I was 17, but still, it dominated my life for almost 10 years.
We’ll talk more about that in my next post!
In my next Childhood travel adventure post I’m going to talk about Cyprus, Egypt, Portugal (again!), Rhodes and my first real cruise experience.
Do you have any fond memories of holidays/travel adventures you had when you were a child?