Where I’m Going in 2015

 

Lincoln Memorial

It is almost overwhelming how my travel plans are shaping up for this year. It is still only February and I have already been to Washington, D.C., San Diego and Los Angeles in 2015 – and I’m heading to San Francisco this weekend. I spent the first weekend in January in D.C. to speak at a conference for work, but I also was able to attend a college basketball game in Maryland and meet up with some old law school friends while I was in town. My trip to southern California was similar – it was primarily for work, but I at least managed to catch up with several friends over drinks.
 

San Francisco

 
This weekend in San Francisco will be mostly for fun! I have never really spent time in the city and it was one of the the places I listed last month that I wanted to get to this year. On Friday, I’ll be meeting with my fellow board members for Passports with Purpose and then Saturday and Sunday I’ll be doing a ton of exploring! Any recommendations for me? Share in the comments!
 

New York

 
Next up will be New York City the weekend of April 17-19. I have visited the Big Apple countless times and always love it. This time I will be going to speak at the New York Travel Fest as part of a workshop on taking a career break to travel. It’s a topic I love to speak about and I love meeting others who are thinking of traveling long-term, so I’m really excited for this!
 

Kalamazoo

 
After a return trip to D.C. (for work again), I will head to Kalamazoo, Michigan the first weekend in May! It is just a short train ride away from Chicago and I will be visiting fellow blogger Sally Thelen, better known as Unbrave Girl. We’re going wine tasting at a haunted castle and running a 5K (because those two things go perfectly together, right?) and who knows what else?
 

London

 
This was not really in the cards at the beginning of the year, but I recently got offered a ticket for Wimbledon that was too good to pass up! I’ll be going for the first Monday of the second week, which is one of the best days of the tournament, with all of the remaining men and women in action. My plan is to arrive on Friday, July 3 so I may queue for a grounds pass on July 4 as I did when I went five years ago. Something tells me I likely won’t be watching the longest match in tennis history as I did the last time I went, but it should still be amazing!
 

The Balkans

 
From London, I will set out on my “big” trip for the year – going somewhere in the Balkans. Right now, I’m kind of obsessed with the idea of hiking a relatively new hiking route called the Peaks of the Balkans, which goes through Kosovo, Montenegro and Albania. If things work out as I hope, I’ll fly in and out of Pristina, Kosovo and spend 8-9 days hiking and a couple days checking out the rest of the very small country of Kosovo.

If things don’t pan out to do the trek, I’ll likely divide my time between Kosovo and either Macedonia or Albania. Stay tuned for more!

Peaks of the Balkans map
Map courtesy of mapsofbalkan.com.

 

New York (again)

I’ll spend either Labor Day weekend or the following weekend in New York again for one of my favorite sporting events – the US Open!
 

Ethiopia

 
Yes, I’m heading back to Africa! I normally don’t make travel plans quite so far in advance, but I stumbled upon killer airfare to Addis Ababa for the week of Thanksgiving and just couldn’t pass it up (in case you’re wondering, Chicago-Addis on Qatar Airways for under $700 RT!!). I first got excited about visiting this country when I looked into it as an alternative to my Mali trip last fall and I have heard so many good things, I can’t wait to see it for myself. The hardest thing will be narrowing down what to see and do in just nine days!

Lalibela
Lalibela, Ethiopia. Photo courtesy of A.Davey via Flickr.

 

Where else?

 
I’ll likely head back to Minnesota to see my family over the holidays and there is probably another trip to D.C. in the cards (I’m hoping to run the Marine Corps Marathon in October!). I’d also like to go somewhere for a long weekend over Memorial Day weekend but haven’t decided where yet. I’m thinking perhaps a short hiking trip somewhere…
 

Do you have any recommendations for any of my 2015 destinations?

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14 thoughts on “Where I’m Going in 2015”

  1. Hello Katie,
    My name is Biniam(Travel Manager of Addis Tour), a company based in Ethiopia. Glad to hear that Ethiopia is in your list for 2015 trip.
    If you need any travel recommendation or inquiry about Ethiopia,

    Please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Hospitality regards,

  2. Wow, I envy your list of destinations for 2015! I travel a lot too but apart from a great trip to Bali and Hong Kong in August, I haven’t booked the smaller ones yet. Isn’t it great to know ahead of time all the great places you’ll visit this year? I love to have an overview of the next 4-5 places, it just helps you daydream when work at the office is too challenging! I can’t wait to hear about all these new adventures!

    1. It’s funny – it’s exciting to have things planned out, but a bit of a letdown too. I’m using every single drop of vacation time so I don’t have room to add more besides weekend trips. So it takes a bit of the fun out of dreaming of all different places!

      1. I am usually the same way and have every hour of PTO accounted for when the year starts – this year, I am going to try to be more spontaneous and leave some days set aside for “last minute” travel so I can take advantage of good deals. It’s really, hard, though!

        1. The best deal I took advantage of was 9 months away! 🙂 Can’t imagine finding better airfare to Ethiopia than I did.

  3. Sounds like a great year! You’re going to 3 of my favorite places – NYC, San Francisco, and London.

    In San Francisco, I’d go to the Haight-Ashbury district. Not a whole lot left from “The Summer of Love,” but there are still interesting places, including one of the largest / best records stores in the world – Amoeba Records. Golden Gate Park is close by too. The Japanese Tea Garden (http://japaneseteagardensf.com/) there is nice. If you like the artist Roger Dean, I can tell you where to find part of his permanent collection.

    BTW, if you have an extra ticket for Wimbledon, I’d be happy to go with you. 🙂 Completing my own person Grand Slam is on my personal bucket list. I’ve been to the US Open 5 times and the Australian Open once. (My current favorite tournament is the Western and Southern Open in Cincinatti. I was there the entire week last year and am doing so again this year. Can’t wait!)

    1. Thanks Roy!

      My Wimbledon ticket was offered to me by a friend, so unfortunately I don’t have any extras.

      I have queued for Wimbledon tickets in the past, though, and it’s a fun experience and if you don’t mind getting out there at 5 a.m. to wait in line for a few hours, it is a great way to get cheap tickets during the early rounds!

      1. Well… you can’t blame me for trying! I would definitely consider queuing for Wimbledon tickets, but if I’m going to make a trip like that, I would have to be CERTAIN that I’d be able to get in to see some matches (and not just on the big screens).

        I remember an older post from you about the Wimbledon lottery that happens each Fall, so I have entered that every year. Maybe I’ll get lucky one of these years!

        I hope that you enjoy both Grand Slam tournaments this year!

  4. I’m also using every drop of my annual leave for travelling this year. I don’t usually book it all in one go but I’ve done more or less just that already!

    Heading to Oslo in April. Interrailing through Europe in June, taking in Italy, Switzerland, Slovenia, Austria, Skovakia and Poland. And then off to Thailand for Christmas & New Year!

  5. these are some exciting plans Katie and I’m looking forward to reading more about your future travels! I’m especially excited about Balkans, I was in Albania+Macedonia+Kosovo just in November and it was pretty amazing! You’re gonna love it there for sure!!

  6. I’m registering for the Marine Corps Marathon, too. I hope we get in and can maybe meet up. I have a group of girls from all over the world that will come in if we all get it. good luck!

    I’m going to Atlanta for the first time ever to see a friend and just chill out. I’m also planning my honeymoon later this year to Santiago and Patagonia, Chile. Alaska was on the plate for September, but I may be getting married that month. Oh well.

  7. Ethiopia is a must visit Destinations.
    Ethiopia is the biggest the secret of Africa. The charming & friendly people with ancient history more than 3,000 Years dating back to Queen of Sheba, home of the Ark of Covenant, the oldest Christian nation in Africa.

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