January – Kick off a wanderful year in Seoul
I’d just come back from Saigon and Da Lat. The original plan was to fly to Boracay for New Year’s Eve, but shit happened. But anyhow, what mattered most was the fact that I finally made it to Seoul! It was also the first Airbnb experience, the first time seeing melted snow, the first time getting frozen under the cold weather (was -18 Celcius).
February – Pre Lunar New Year trip to Koh Samui Island
It was Lunar New Year month. For the third year in a row, I was away from my family during the reunion time, a part of me still couldn’t push through. I booked a flight to Koh Samui (Thailand) instead. Although it didn’t help much with my homesickness, my soul was at rest. The month passed by so quickly and almost brutally boring.
March – Summer came early in Perhentian Island
As soon as the monsoon season was over, I made another beach-cation to Perhentian Island. And I fell in love with Perhentian at the first sight! Its pristine water and vibrant tropical vibes were everything that I had been longing for.
April – The next career move
I made my second career move this month. It was tough at first because I’ve made so many good friends where I left, what a tremendous experience I’ve gained under a startup’s roof. Thank God that I finally had my career passion figured out!
May – Taipei and a good ol’ friend
Back in September or October last year, I learned that one of my best friends was going to study in Taiwan. So without a plan, I immediately booked a flight to Taipei. I came to fall in love with the country as fast as I fell in love with travelling.
June – A quick getaway in Port Dickson
This was a spontaneous one. I was waiting for my Europe visa application results so why not chilling somewhere less stressful?
July – The European dream
Here we go, the trip that I dreamt about for as long as I could remember. A year-long saving and planning to finally make it happen! Even when I arrived in Paris, it still felt so surreal. I wanted to visit Europe, particularly at this time in order to experience the festive season of the Euro Cup. I spent the 7 days in Paris alone to embrace the city of my deepest desire.
It was indeed a dream come true.
Throughout the course of 3 weeks, I travelled from Paris to Brussels, Amsterdam, Berlin, Bratislava (where I reunited with my dear Slovak friend and her family), Terchová, Vienna and Budapest. I would definitely go back to explore individual country one by one, primarily France and Germany.
August – The journey through the temples of Angkor in Siem Reap
I guess it is impossible for me to not travel after all that amount of time spent on the road. I realised that being able to afford travelling on my own brings the highest level of satisfaction, beyond any kind of success. It’s taught me so much about financial planning, self-discipline and determination.
September – Welcoming the life of a freelancer, quick trips to Singapore and Saigon
This month, I took a leap of faith and quit my full-time job to pursue a freelance writing career. I had a lot of doubts, of course, but it’d been a great journey and I’d learned so much. For the first time after 3 years of blogging, I finally saw my name grandiosely mentioned within the media industry. Nothing can beat the feeling of being able to do what you love, right?
During this first month of working from home, I decided to re-visit Singapore! The last trip I had to the Lion city was 2 years ago and surprisingly it felt so brand new all over again.
October – Back to Taipei on a solo adventure
During Air Asia’s flash sale, I managed to grab a jaw-dropping deal to fly to Taipei. Unfortunately, I only found out that my friend had just gone back to Vietnam a few weeks before my departure schedule. So I ended up exploring the city by myself (which was awesome!).
November – Casino time in Genting Highlands and Saigon again!
Having stayed here for 3 years long, I never felt the urge to go to Genting.
This month, I came back to the 9-5 job. For one, it is super difficult for me to apply for any visa without an employment letter, hence freelancing is not possible at the moment. Secondly, being alone at home all day long really bored the hell out of me.
December – Nippon bound, Christmas in Tokyo and Osaka
This Japan trip was another total spontaneous plan, just because I found cheap flights for the Holidays. I went back to Saigon for a quick transit before heading to Tokyo. It was super exciting because it was during Christmas (the best time of the year!) in one of the greatest metropolitans in the world!
There might not be a lot going on next year as we want to really save up. Nonetheless, I am overjoyed that I have fulfilled my resolutions for this year. I’ve achieved some of my biggest dreams, seeing the N Seoul Tower, Eiffel Tower and Tokyo Tower, experienced solo travelling across Europe, had my writing published, and most importantly, found my dream job!
Here’s to a brighter year ahead!
I wish you all the best for 2017