Adventure Countdown: 12 Days

15 cities. 5 countries. 5 weeks.

I can’t believe my boyfriend and I will be leaving for our 5 week backpacking trip through Europe in LESS. THAN. TWO. WEEKS! I can hardly contain my excitement. I get more and more eager each day I cross off my calendar. I know it’ll be a very fast paced 5 weeks but I’m ready for a new adventure. We’ll be traveling through the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain and ending in London.

Adventure Countdown: 12 Days

These next 12 days until we leave will be extremely hectic. I’ll be finishing my last semester as an undergraduate and walking across that stage to receive my diploma. After graduation, I’ll have just 3 days to pack and get everything together for our big adventure. Being the engineer that I am, I love the planning phase of a trip almost as much as I love the actual trip, but of course the trip is always better. We’ve been anticipating and planning this trip for months and it’s finally just days away. It felt like our departure day would never arrive and I’m so excited for all the adventures, misadventures and funny stories that I’m sure will come out of our trip.

Do you have any tips for the few days before leaving on a trip? Do you have any upcoming trips planned? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

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16 thoughts on “Adventure Countdown: 12 Days

  1. I feel your excitement! I leave for a week’s vacation in Cape Coral, Florida in 8 days, and in 29 days I leave for a month study abroad program in Segovia, Spain! I’ve still got four finals to get through, but I’m SO excited.

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    • Sometimes winging it is the best way to go! We will be visiting Barcelona, Zaragoza, Madrid (I studied abroad here two years ago), Córdoba and Seville! I can’t wait to be back in Spain, I’ve missed it so much! Do you have any suggestions for the places we’re going?

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      • Unfortunately, not my part of Spain nor any of the parts I know best (País Vasco, Cantabria, Burgos, La Rioja, Navarra), but I can suggest some things. I’ve heard of food tours in both Barcelona & Madrid that look incredible (and apparently there’s one in Sevilla now too! http://devourspain.com/). I’ve already recently heard of a bike tour in Sevilla that looks really reasonably priced (http://atdspain.com/). For Madrid, my favourite spot is Mamá Framboise, try to avoid it on a Sunday morning if you can, or be willing to wait (http://www.mamaframboise.com/)!

        I’m actually heading to Barcelona (again) and Zaragoza this coming weekend!

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      • Thanks for the suggestions, Ashley! We will definitely be trying Mamá Framboise in Madrid and those food tours look wonderful. Anything involving food peaks my interest. Have a great time in Barcelona and Zaragoza! I’m so excited to explore those two cities 🙂

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  2. I did the same thing when I finished graduate school — took off to the United Kingdom and Ireland for a month with everything on my back. I now facilitate travel journal writing workshops.

    Consider journaling at least one of the following exercises BEFORE you leave to better prepare you for what may or may not happen and to make you a more thoughtful and alert traveler.

    1) Answer the following questions: a) Write what you will take with you? (Beyond what’s in your bags, what attitudes, assumptions, expectations do you take with you? Will you take gifts for those you want to thanks along the way?); b) What will leave there? (What acts of kindness, gifts, new perspectives you have shared with others, clothes for others will you leave behind?); c) What will you bring home with you? (Think of new perspectives or outlooks, new interests and curiosities, memoirs, photos, writing pieces, essays, etc.)

    2) Consider what kind of traveler you are, will be, or hope to be. Consider and write what each of these mean to you? Tourist, pilgrim, researcher, adventurer, explorer, sociologist, cultural anthropologist, thrill-seeker?

    3) Shake, rattle and roll. a) What make you shake (tremble, good or bad)? b) What rattles or upsets you? c) What calms you down, so you can roll with the punches.

    Have fun with any or all of these. Travel Blessings! Rhonda

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    • These are awesome questions, Rhonda!! I normally journal during my trips but I never thought of journaling before I go about my expectations and what not. I will definitely be trying this out, thank you so much for the suggestions! I’m sure it will make my trip even better. & a month around the UK and Ireland sounds amazing. I hope to get to Ireland soon 🙂 So much to explore and not enough time. Thanks so much for reading, Rhonda!

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      • I would be quite interested AFTER your return if you found journal writing before made a difference in your experience while there. It should, but I I would enjoy your ‘true confession’ either way, Kate.
        Rhonda

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      • I will be sure to try this out and let you know! I’m sure it’ll definitely have a positive impact on my trip and a fun exercise as well! 🙂

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    • Thank you so much! I’m so excited to graduate and move on to a new chapter in my life starting with this trip. It’ll be interesting to go on a trip with more of a blogger mindset. I’m excited to write all about it. Thanks for reading 🙂

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  3. Have fun on your trip!! My boyfriend and I just came back from a month long trip to Thailand, Japan, and Hawaii and it was amazing. Our first trip together and we learned so much about each other, ourselves, and our relationship in general. I’m like you, I love the planning stages of a new adventure almost as much as the trip itself. Safe travels!

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    • Wow, a month in Thailand, Japan and Hawaii sounds wonderful! Thailand is at the very tip top of my bucket list. This will be my boyfriend and mine’s first extended trip together and I’m sure we will learn a lot about each other and our relationship as well. Traveling as a couple is definitely a learning experience but can be so rewarding! Thanks so much for reading, Kristie!

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  4. Woooow this is so exciting!!! Planning is awesome but also give yourself the opportunity to wing it! Also pack as lightly as you can (reuse those shirts girl!), you’ll be glad when you’re carrying your bags across cities

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