I published my first post in April 2010. Back then, although I had already been living in Switzerland for 7 months, it was the first time I really felt lonely. It was probably when I moved from the honeymoon to frustration in the 4 phases of culture shock. Hoping to escape from this feeling of not belonging in Switzerland, I traveled as often as time (and money) would allow.
One year later, I’m now in the stage of Understanding the country, its culture and traditions. I’m learning french and enjoy my quality time at the lake or in the mountains.
For this occasion, I’ve gathered together my favorite 12 photos of 12 places I’ve visited in the last 12 months. I hope you enjoy the ride!
Mid-May las year, I flew over to the other side of the World. My first stop was Sydney. Although I only stayed for 5 days, the city immediately hit my heart.
Having free champagne and sushi when visiting a small art auction, walking along the coast side watching business people changing their work suits for wetsuits and running off to the beach (and secretly hoping that could someday be me) and feeding kangaroos at Featherdale Wildlife Park are only some of my favorite memories of that short period of time. In less than a week, the city won my heart and obtained the second position in my Top 5 City Ranking (right after Buenos Aires).
New Zealand – North Island
Right after Sydney, we flew over to Auckland. 2 intensive weeks of road tripping from the north to the south were just ahead us! I was fascinated by the country’s geothermal activity, discovered I had the physical health of a couch potato and spent most of my extra cash in Wellington’s thrift shops.
New Zealand – South Island
On an early morning, we took the ferry from Wellington to Picton and then slowly drove down to Queenstown. We stopped in Franz Joseph hoping to do a helicopter ride over the glacier, but our adventurous spirit pulled us towards the 3 and a half hours glacier hike. I never thought I’d enjoy ice this much and would do it all over again!
Annecy is a little Venice in France, not far away from the swiss border. Besides for being quite crowded during summer time, it’s a beautiful place to walk, eat crêpes and drink french cider.
Lavaux Region, Switzerland
I was just celebrating my one year in Switzerland when I discovered the beautiful region of Lavaux and haven’t stopped dreaming of it ever since. Good wine, some cheese, the Alps and the lake – could there be any better combination to spend a warm summer night?
La Habana, Cuba
In October, my job took me to the timeless city of La Habana. During those two weeks, when I wasn’t working, I walked along its colorful streets, danced to the rhythm of casino (the real cuban salsa) and ate far too many fried banana chips. I love my job.
London is my safe haven – Whenever I feel lonely or just need a change, I know that this city won’t fail. I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve been to London in the last year, but I do know that, the more I walk through its streets admiring its Victorian mansions, the more I fall in love with it.
Lanzarote, Canary Islands (Spain)
I spent Christmas on a neighbor island – Lanzarote, particularly known for its volcanic scenery and good wine.
Paris and me. A Love-Hate Story. On a sunny friday afternoon, as I was on my way to the train station and return to Switzerland for the weekend, I finally decided to put my resentment aside and give the city of love a second chance. And then I fell in love again.
New York, USA
January 2010, I won the best prize I could ever receive at my company’s Christmas party: 2 tickets to New York! I invited one of my best friends and we had a great time – despite the big freeze.
Edinburgh was one of those impulsive ticket purchases on a really low price (for swiss standards, that is) – and I’m so glad I did! It did rain all the time, but this didn’t stop me of walking its small and enchanted alleys. This is where I discovered that rainy days make out for great pictures!
Tenerife, Canary Islands (Spain)
Home Sweet Home. I just returned from a relaxing week in what still is one of my favorite places worldwide – How couldn’t it? Its black sand beaches and breathtaking mountain scenery, its fresh fish and good wine, my family and two cats. My one week vacation was just too short…