WHY THE BEST HOLIDAYS AREN'T ALWAYS THE MOST LUXURIOUS.

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

It's normal that every year certain places around the world become popular as tourist destinations and because of the power of social media, influencers and word of mouth, everyone makes it their number 1 priority to visit Thailand, Dubai, Iceland or go to Glastonbury before these places are seen like 'old news'. For me, some of my favourite and most memorable trips have been an hour away from where I live or the first time I stayed in a youth hostel in Amsterdam (maybe for the wrong reasons).  I mean I wouldn't say no to staying in a 5 star resort in Barbados, as long as I was in good company and with good food. The great thing about travelling is that you don't need to earn a 6 figure pay check to do it, because at the end of the day you could grab five of your best friends and get on a plane to Bratislava and have a whale of a time. I decided to take a walk down memory lane to reminisce on what some of my most memorable trips have been.

kerala

India, 2017

Around this time last year I spent 16 days travelling around Kerala with 29 other bloggers on a trip of a lifetime and for me it was my first time in the Asian continent so it was a trip of many firsts. I slept on an overnight train, ate without cutlery from a banana leaf (I wasn't the neatest, glad I wasn't on a date), spent nights dancing with the locals around a bonfire, and got to experience this with a complete group of strangers who then became friends and who provided me with laughs, great stories and in some cases, a future place to stay! I'd like to dedicate this post to Evelyn, an amazing woman who was always willing to share her snacks with me and always had a smile on her face, no matter the situation. rest in peace my love.

kerala

New York, 2015

Now I know New York isn't on the cheap side, but compared to other states the flights here aren't too bad. I mean I was flying from Orlando at the time so my flight and airbnb was a grand total of £150 for 4 nights in April. Like most people, I'd been dreaming of visiting New York since watching, every movie based in New York basically. I must admit before visiting I thought it was going to be majorly overrated, but then I got there and got why it was so popular. I'd been binge watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S for the first time EVER before going and so of course we went to visit the block, ate cheesecake at Junior's, felt like I'd been transported back to 1950's Hollywood when walking through Chelsea, and fell in love with Coney Island. I sometimes day dream about owning a micro apartment here and blogging by the window whilst people watching. 

Royal Caribbean Cruise, 2011

This is the first and only cruise I've ever gone on, and it was SO MUCH FUN. I was 16 at the time so I was in my element in the teen club. I remember we barely saw my dad as we spent 70% of our time hanging out with the friends me and my sister had made on the cruise. Admittedly the travel aspect wasn't the best as cruise stops are always a bit rushed and you're just tired, sweaty and power walking everywhere most of the time. Although it's still one of my holiday highlights because of all the hilarious things that happened and the people we met. 

royal caribbean

Disneyland Paris, 2003

This was actually the second time I had visited the park but all I remember from 4 year old me going is that Snow White was a rude cow. I went here for my 9th birthday with my mum and my sister and everything that could have gone wrong the first day went wrong. Our flight was delayed so we missed the last coach transfer to the hotels in the park, they double booked our room so we had to stay in another one overnight AND they added pickles to my McDonalds burger when I specifically said no pickles. Because of this, the hotel gave us unlimited fast passes, breakfast in the park and lunch with the characters for my birthday - so 9 year old Giana left very happy. 



On a final note, if you are visiting Thailand, Dubai, Iceland or going to Glastonbury I'm sure you are going to have a great time, please bring me a postcard for my wall and tell me about something that made you laugh on your trip. No matter if you're a budget or luxury traveller, the best trips are always those filled with fun experiences, doing it like the locals and when in good company. If this post has sparked your wanderlust it's still not too late to book your summer holiday, it might be worth taking a look at these last minute deals from Holiday Gems


Do you remember your most memorable holiday? and remember guys, memorable doesn't always have to mean greatest! I'd love to hear some holidays gone wrong in the comments too!

G


* this post was written as part of a campaign with Holiday Gems but all words are my own *


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14 comments

  1. Love this post! For me, I think holidays are what you make them rather than where you're going (like you, I wouldn't be complaining at a 5* Barbados though!). I love the fact you remember snow white was a rude cow, that made me giggle so much however I'm glad they offered you a lunch with the characters on your second trip! We've had a good couple of holidays go wrong - One time we flew to Orlando and my dad forgot his driving licence so it took hours for someone to send it over to their email from the UK and then when we went to go pick up keys (same holiday, same day) for our house my dad had booked for June not July, so we had nowhere to stay and had to book another one! Then just a few years back, we were touring America so we were on a tight schedule, we missed our flight to San Francisco as we arrived at the airport 5 minutes before the plane was due to leave so only ended up having 1 day there before we had to drive on! I guess that's what makes holidays memorable though, it always gives us a good giggle when we think back!

    Sarah | http://www.sazsinclair.com xx

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    1. omg what a mess! I remember when we got to Orlando my step-dad couldn't make sense of the satnav and we were legit going round in circles for 40 minutes and didn't get to our room until like 2am - what a mess aha! x

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  2. I love this post, I totally agree with you that a holiday is made by the company you spend it with! Saying that I have to admit I am a bit of a luxury holiday snob and go for 5* rated hotels purely because I've heard so many horror stories about bad hotels! Looks like you've had some wonderful travel experiences - https://sophiehearts.net x

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  3. Aw this is such a lovely post! I agree 100% with everything you said. One of my best trips was going to Japan with my best friend. It was kind of a spontaneous trip to see our other friend living there, and we were basically living the backpacking life. But it was so much fun even if we were living in dodgy airbnbs and eating street food. I think the best trips are the unplanned ones. That being said, I do love a good 5* resort with a nice view! Haha xx

    amerzwithlove.com

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    1. ahhh I'm so jealous - I'd love to go to Japan next year! x

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  4. I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Evelyn, I clicked her blog to check it out and she seems like a wonderful soul. You look lovely in all the photos, please share your hair secrets, it's gorgeous!

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    1. she was indeed! thank you lovely - to be honest I don't do much to it all all, I think it's always a frizzy mess haha!

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  5. When I was 8 years old or something, we went to Turkey as we always did every summer and I think, the total temperature change made me sick. I was like throwing up all the time and being feverish. After that was gone too, like in one to two weeks or so, I managed to squish my finger in the door when I was just finished with showering and wanted to close the door to my bedroom. Not such a good trip haha
    But except that I remember all of my holiday trips being as beautiful as they could be! Mostyle, they contained backpacking and roadtrips on a small budget, sleeping in not the best hostels but having a wonderful and unforgettable time!
    But since I started University and will be studying abroad for one semester starting in September, it could be a little difficult to book a flight for holidays. Well, hopefully your plans for this summer are better than mine!
    xx Hilal | Peonycrescent.com

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    1. oh no! I was throwing up my first night when I got to Budapest and was dreading that I wasn't going to be able to enjoy the rest of the trip, but luckily I got better! x

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  6. I loved this so much Gi, I definitely agree you don't have to spend all the money in the world to have a fabulous holiday. I'm glad your trip to Disneyland Paris ending up making Gi very happy, the trades for all the things that went wrong kindof make it sound all worth while. How you described the cruise is exactly how I imagine it too, but it sounds like you had a fabulous time anyway. All of these holidays sound incredible,. xx

    Kristy | https://www.thevioletblonde.com/

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  7. Um girl, you do know it's my absolute dream to have my own apartment in New York one day, right?! I think we should definitely make this happen one day, even if only for a few months haha! xx
    www.imjustagirl16.co.uk

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  8. I definitely agree that you don't have to have luxury to have a brilliant time on holiday! One of the best places that I've ever visited, Delphi in Greece, was one of the most budget trips I made! We stayed in a very budget yet still charming little hotel on the main street and had a wonderful 2 days exploring all of the archaeological sites and taking in the breathtaking scenery- I wouldn't change those memories for the world!

    Abbey xx http://www.abbeylouisarose.co.uk

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  9. Totally agree with this post! You can have a fab time without living luxe. One of my favourite trips was Majorca, we invited the whole family which ended up being around 20 of us, so had to keep it as budget friendly as possible! x

    Terri // TerriTalks

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  10. I’m one of these people that loves a 5* hotel but I’ve grown to love hostel and staying within my means! Like you said you don’t have to spend so much!!! New York can be cheap if you make it! :)
    Great post!
    www.emmalanglands.co.uk

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