Several years ago, David and I decided to make experiences a priority in our annuals goals. So, every year, I look forward to taking this time to reflect on where we’ve been, what we’ve experienced, and how it has offered us a new perspective and view. This year was an amazing year of those travel experiences and I am humbled with the next two trips that I have planned in January. As I started working on this post, I was thrilled to see the mix of North Carolina experiences with those in various cities around the United States. If you live in North Carolina, you don’t have to travel far to see some of the unique parts of our state. So, grab a cup of coffee, and check out a year of travel.
2019 Review: a Year of Travel
For my birthday, I took a little trip to the Yadkin Valley Wine Trail to try North Carolina wines. I had a huge misconception that North Carolina wines would be sweet because of our famous muscadine grape that many eastern NC vineyards use. I was pleasantly surprised at how delicious the wines were that we sampled on our tour. Check out my original post here with all the details including where to stay, what driver service to use, and where to eat!
David and I did a staycation at the Carolina Inn, which had been on my bucket list for years, dating back to undergrad. It is such a lovely place and you don’t even have to leave the Inn during your stay. However, if you want to venture out on the town, here is a travel guide to the best that Chapel Hill has to offer.
Photo by Glory Roze Photography
David and I made a couple of trips down to Wilmington this year. We went at the end of winter and during fall, and both are lovely times to visit. I always enjoy visiting the beach during off months because it’s quiet and usually still warm enough to head out on the beach. When we went at the end of October, it was 80 degrees and we got to spend some time on the beach and on a boat ride. Check out the Hotel Ballast for a great place to stay with awesome amenities or Front Street Inn, if you prefer small, quaint boutique hotels.
David and I made a trip up to Baltimore to go to an Orioles v. Yankees game. I had never been to the city before, but wow is it a lot of fun! We had a great time exploring the city and I really loved the food scene there. We stayed at the Kimpton Monaco, and it’s worth noting that I very much love a Kimpton hotel.
I went up to Chicago for a weekend to celebrate my friend, Kayd’s, 30th birthday. It was a chilly weekend in May, but nonetheless, an amazing visit. I love Chicago and had yet another great trip to the city. See one of my favorite trips for The Blog Societies Conference here.
My two girlfriends and I decided to take a long weekend trip to St. Augustine to get away, relax, and enjoy each other’s company. I cannot recommend St. Augustine enough for this type of trip. We relaxed on the beach during the day and wandered around historic St. Augustine in the evenings. It was such a beautiful town with great restaurants, quiet serene beaches, and ease of getting around.
I made another trip back to Louisville for work in June and it was a beautiful week. I am a big fan of Louisville for their food, the city’s vibe, and the views of the river. It is such a fun city and a quick flight from Raleigh. I highly recommend checking it out for a weekend getaway!
David and I finally had the opportunity to stop in Belhaven and spend the night before making our way to Ocracoke. We stayed at Between Water and Main Bed & Breakfast and cannot recommend a stay here enough. Belhaven is the perfect spot for a weekend getaway! I’m hoping we can make this an annual tradition.
I had the opportunity to stay at the O.Henry Hotel this year after experiencing its sister hotel, Proximity, several times before. I very much enjoy Greensboro, and this hotel is quite charming. I highly recommend a stay at either one of these properties for a lovely experience.
To end summer, David and I made a little getaway to Pinehurst for a weekend. It was such a lovely time away, and we both especially loved the spa. It’s a great place to walk around and window shop, eat, and enjoy the scenes. It’s not just for golfers!
I had the best time visiting Goldsboro and seeing all that this small town in Eastern North Carolina has to offer! The BBQ is delicious, there are awesome hiking trails, shopping, and their downtown is undergoing an awesome revitalization. I cannot recommend this quaint town for either a day trip or an overnight trip.
David and I love a good date night out in Durham, and our recent one to hear Devin Dawson and Kip Moore at the Carolina Theatre did not disappoint! We love the 21c Museum Hotel and Durham has some of the best restaurants in the area! We cannot recommend a night there enough!
After our flight was cancelled to Montreal over the summer, we decided to wait and celebrate our anniversary in NYC for the holidays. It’s been on our bucket list for several years now and we finally got to do it. I wrote a detailed post about all the places we went while there, and we truly enjoyed our time exploring the city during this magical time. I highly recommend a trip during the holidays if you’ve never been!
We are so fortunate to have the time together we had and I feel equally lucky to have spent time with friends on trips this year. I think nothing is more important than traveling and learning about new places and experiencing new things, so this was a wonderful year for that!
You can see all our travels here, plus my North Carolina Bucket List, 10 Unique Hotels in North Carolina, and 5 Eastern North Carolina Destination Restaurants.
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