I said to myself at the end of 2017, that next year would be a year of big changes for me. The life I have loved for the last three years has been an incredible gift but I feel like I’ve moved into a different phase of my life and I’m ready to try something new. I mentioned this in a post I wrote back in January, but after a lot of questions about my travel plans for the year – I thought it was time for an update. Those of you who follow me on social media (follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) will know that I arrived back in the UK at the end of December for my first Christmas in the UK in over three years. I was ecstatic at the thought of coming home and catching up with friends and family, finally getting to enjoy all the festive traditions I had missed so much while traveling. Everyone asked how long I would be back and for the first time in a long time, I was actually able to say “I’ll be around for a while.”

So why did I come back?

Well for the first time in my whole time travelling, I was actually feeling a bit homesick and after hearing the news from one of my best friends that she was expecting a baby, I really just wanted to be at home. I knew I didn’t want to stop traveling, but there comes a time when you just need to be surrounded by the people who know you best. When you just need to re-center yourself before heading on another adventure. I had spent a whole three years away from home having the most amazing experiences, but with that had come some sacrifices – missing birthdays, big life events, achievements, new jobs and all the troubles in the lives of my friends and family. It takes it’s toll after a while and can give you a real sense of FOMO.

What’s happening now?

It’s been a busy few months of catching up with everyone and organising my life. I’ve actually taken on freelance work at the newspaper I worked at prior to my travels, so it’s been lovely to be back in an office and to get back to newspaper writing for a while. Plus it’s fantastic because the work fits perfectly around my life and my own schedule, so I have more opportunities to meet up with friends and even attend blogging events. I’ve really enjoyed being able to actually be a part of the blogging community and to meet people in person instead of always online. I actually attended an amazing event with Visit Qatar last month and had the opportunity to meet some of my fave bloggers in person which was really lovely. I’m using this time to save my money and to really snap up as many blogging opportunities as possible while I’m in the UK. I’m also making the most of time with family and friends by organising lots of fun things like afternoon teas, baby showers, shows, uni reunions etc.

And what’s happening next?

I’ll be honest and say that as much as I love being at home, I am facing the same old struggle of being desperate to jump on a plane. It’s a double-edged sword when you love being at home and surrounded by friends and family, but your soul feels the need to escape and explore somewhere new. So my next travel plans are very much combining the two. I’ve actually spent this weekend visiting my boyfriend in Hamburg, and getting to explore the city which will be my new home! That’s right, I’m moving to Germany! My boyfriend and I both fancied staying a bit closer to home after spending the last few years on the other side of the world, and we decided to settle in his home city of Hamburg. I loved the idea of still setting up a new home in a brand new city, but also remaining close by so I can visit family and friends, especially with my friend’s new baby arriving in the next few months.

We are apartment-hunting and saving a bit of money now, but the plan is that I will move over there in May and finally we will be living together again. Our plan is to stay based in Hamburg for the next year to save money, with later plans to travel South America, and to travel more of Europe while we are over here. Part of the reason for us choosing to live in Germany was the short distance and the easy accessibility for exploring other countries and we even have plans to convert the boyfriend’s work van into a camper suitable for road trips. I’m really excited for the year ahead, and so, so excited to move over to Germany in May, it’s been a pretty rubbish time being separated from the boyfriend after so long living/travelling together. But I know the wait will be worth it when we have our own place and can really start enjoying the year.

Have you been to Hamburg – what did you love about the city? Have you ever moved abroad – any tips? What are your travel plans for the year?