It’s now coming up to that time of year where I’m starting to think of trips to take in 2013. There’s so many places I still want to see, and I’m so impatient I don’t know where to go first! I was flicking through all the Instagram images I’ve accumulated over the last few months and realised that this summer, I’ve actually achieved quite a lot and seen some amazing places. I think it’s always good to pause and think over what you’ve actually accomplished, as sometimes it feels like you’re constantly treading water until the next thing comes along.

From the top, here are some of my stand out Instagram images from Summer 2012!:

Oslo, June: My first encounter with Scandinavia. I only stayed for a few days, but I loved the wide streets and the quirky buildings. Definitely an area I need to re-visit!

Cuddling a dolphin in Hong Kong: here’s me proudly holding my dolphin Esther! A fab moment and something I’ve always wanted to do. 

MY FIRST PASSPORT STAMP! Once I had arrived in Hong Kong and contained my excitement long enough for the immigration authorities to stamp my passport, I triumphantly instagramed this! I’ve since collected a few more (from Macau and New York), but I still get way too excited.

Waiting for the train at Frankfurt, it suddenly dawned on me that this was my first time travelling abroad on my own.

Sacre Coeur: My boyfriend and I took to the streets of Paris for a day trip back in July. Although it was exhausting, we had a pretty fun day, seeing most of the main tourist sights and relaxing under the Eiffel Tower. What was so great is that we left behind a wet, depressing London and were met with sunshine in Paris!

New York, August. I love New York. I’d dreamed of visiting it for so long that, on the journey to the hotel, I actually CRIED when I saw the Empire State Building. And then I cried again when I saw the Statue of Liberty. This picture sums up for me what New York was all about: bright, alert and colourful. Ah, I want to go back!

We didn’t spend too much time in Central Park, but that only gives me more incentive for a return trip! I love the juxtaposition of nature and the city in this picture. It’s a city of never ending surprises. 

In case you didn’t know (…) the Olympics were held this year in London! Living just down the road from the stadium, I couldn’t resist popping along to the Paralympics to see what all the fuss was about. I’m not one for sport, but the sight of people overcoming their adversities to do something they’re so passionate about blew me away.

September: My little Jim arrives! This is the newest addition to our family – Jim (now 7 months) was found abandoned in a car park, riddled with fleas. Thankfully, the Cats Protection League found him in time, and now he’s got a new home with us! He’s so soppy, he’ll cuddle up to me and kiss me on the nose (MASSIVE SQUEE.)