If you follow me on instagram you may be under the impression that I’m constantly travelling. Indeed I try and visit somewhere new every weekend, but more often than not, that is somewhere on my doorstep. Some place new that we can drive to for the day and return home in an evening. In fact, I haven’t left England in three whole years. Instead I have had many the long weekend away, visiting the likes of the rolling hills of the Cotswolds, the rugged landscape of the Peak District or the coastline of North Yorkshire. I’ve had a couple weeks away this year exploring the counties of Wiltshire, Somerset, Gloucestershire and Cornwall. Would I have liked to have been travelling abroad? Absolutely. Do I feel like I missed out on travelling or experiencing somewhere new? Absolutely not. I have wholeheartedly developed a love for staycations and microadventures. To me, they still feel like travelling. After all, the joy of travelling is to explore some place new. to make new memories. I do not feel like this has to be in another country in order to experience. Here is how and why I make time to travel, be it at home or abroad.
The primary reason we haven’t ventured abroad in so long is because of the birth of our daughter. I know this in itself isn’t an excuse for not travelling abroad, however the extra stress of long haul flights with a newborn and the extra cost is. But in a way, I am glad that we haven’t as it has opened up my eyes to exploring closer to home and to how much there is to discover in your own backyard. This also makes my kind of travelling a lot more affordable!
I feel like I have done the whole travel thing backwards. Moving to Saudi when I was three and living there until my late teens, I was used to venturing to those far flung destinations that are being thrust in front of your eyes on a daily basis. My youth was spent holidaying on the beaches of Thailand or exploring Sri Lanka in the days before tourism had even hit it. These days my travel is spent on a road trip to quaint, picturesque villages in the British countryside or venturing to the farthest reaches of Cornwall. Exploring close to home doesn’t make it any less rewarding. In fact, I find it more so. This is the kind of travel that I can achieve on a monthly basis. And this is how I do it.
Since having Heidi I only work three days a week. I spend many a day and evening blogging, photographing, editing, writing and planning content but my schedule is ultimately what I make it and completely changeable. I know not everybody has this luxury. That being said, my other half works all week long and only has weekends to spare. With that in mind, I plan as many visits to cities, castles, country houses etc for day trips at the weekends as I can. If we want to venture a little further afield then Peter will book off one day before or after the weekend in order that we can escape for 2 days and get a long weekend away.
The way we see it, it is important not only for us, but to Heidi that we make time to travel. I think it is incredibly important to expand the mind and see other areas, countries and ways of life. As much as I have enjoyed showing Heidi around the country we get to call home, I would also like her to show her the world. Hence why we are off to Southern Italy in a few weeks time. I want Heidi to experience different places, cultures and cuisines.
I have grown up seeing the benefits of widening your perspective on life and I desperately want to pass that on to her. This I believe, can first be nurtured at home. From a couple of weeks old we have been taking Heidi on days out all over England and I only feel like she has benefited from this. We are so lucky to have a vast amount of culture and history on our doorsteps, that it is a little easier to find ideas for day trips. However I think that no matter where you are in the world there is so much beauty waiting to be discovered.
We are also lucky to have Europe so close and with that comes plenty of short, affordable flights. We are only just getting back into taking advantage of this. I know we have waited a long time before venturing abroad again but this trip to Italy has been a year and a half in the planning. I always like to give myself something to look forward to and a holiday abroad will always lift my spirits! And whether it be at home in the UK or on the continent, I am constantly looking for inspiration on places to travel to. Those unexplored places which you won’t find on anybody else’s list. The hidden gems. I spend many an evening researching destinations. Places I’ve never heard of, places off the beaten path. All to keep that wanderlust burning!
What drives you to travel? Is it something of importance in your life? Let me know how you fit travel into your year and if you have any tips or tricks. I would love to hear them!
Photos taken at the gorgeous Felley Priory in Nottinghamshire