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If you could return to any five cities, where would you go?

This was the question put to me by Aggy from Dream Explore Wander as part of the Booked.netTop Destinations to Go There challenge.

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As someone who falls in love so easily with cities, I jumped at the chance of this. I’ve spent the last week revisiting holiday memories with friends, scouring through my (extensive) photo collection, and trying to put into words just how and why I fell in love with the cities I did.

Without further ado, here are my top 5:

5. Reykjavik

I was in Reykjavik for around 5 days last June and, while I felt this was a good amount of time to see what the city has to offer, I still felt like I only scratched the surface of what else is available around the country. Reykjavik Excursions offer a shed load of day excursions and there are still so many I’d like to go on. Not only that, but the Blue Lagoon is still one of the best places I’ve ever visited – and my mum fell in love with the spa bits I brought back from there. If that’s not a good reason to return, I don’t know what is.

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4. Venice

Excuse the image not taken by me – despite having been to Venice twice when I was younger, I still have no photographic evidence of ever actually stepping foot in the city. However, this isn’t the reason why I want to return again (although the idea of spending a few days putting my photography skills to the test around the city does rather excite me). Venice is a European city that throws you into the past. The maze of streets keep you occupied for days, and there’s nothing more satisfying than just wandering – with no set plan – and stumbling across beautiful Venetian shops, cobbled bridges and yummy eateries.

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3. Barcelona

Barcelona – the city that kick-started my love of travel all those years ago. The gorgeous weather, the excitement of seeing sights I’d only read about in magazines, and the freedom to just do whatever I wanted had me wishing I was constantly travelling. It spurred me on to save money and see much more of the world. On top of this, Barcelona is one city I will always recommend people travel to. With its city sights and beach location, it’s a great holiday for everyone, no matter what your interests are.

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 2. Hong Kong

Hong Kong is one of those cities where a week is just never enough – especially when you go in typhoon season and everything’s really humid and foggy. My friend and I had a whistle-stop tour of all the main sights (even squeezing in a day trip to Macau somehow and, ooh it rhymes), but with such an overwhelming city you really do need a lot of time to soak up the culture, take trips out to the nearby areas and really go under the touristy surface. I’d love to return again for a little bit longer.

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1. New York

Oh, New York. To quote one of my favourite movies: “You had me from hello.”

I am nothing if not predictable. I make no secret of the fact I completely and utterly fell head over heels with New York when I visited a few years ago. The moment I stepped off the plane onto the tarmac, I could sense that this was a city I could happily return to again and again. The grand buildings, the confidence of the people, and the never-ending supply of sights to see had me bowled over.

Two years on, I am constantly thinking of how to get back (other than the obvious, y’know, plane ride). I’ve toyed with the idea of jacking everything in and heading straight out there to house sit for my maximum of 90 days allowed on a visa. I’ve considered heading out there for a long weekend over Christmas. I’ve even looked at jobs over there (as well as information on pet passports for my ginger cat).

One thing’s for certain – New York, hang tight. I’ll be back soon.

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20120823_105034Now I need to nominate five people to write about the places they fell in love with!

1. Lauren of Tea and Post

2. Chris of Guild of British Travellers

3. Jodie of The Little Backpacker

4. Bev of Pack Your Passport

5. Monica of The Travel Hack

I can’t wait to hear what you all write about! What do you think of my top 5?