This was a damn tough list to compile! Me and the other half had some different ideas on what should make the cut and I have some great memories from Travelling with Mother so there was a lot to choose from. Nonetheless, we’ve whittled it down, ready to share with you now. Here goes…
10. Being lost for words in Diagon Alley at Harry Potter World, Universal Orlando. If you love theme parks and haven’t yet been to Universal, you’re in for a real treat. The level of detail is staggering, there’s so much to look at and you can really feel the magic!
9. Sailing around the Caribbean island of St Lucia on a pirate ship. We were celebrating our first anniversary and decided to join an excursion to Soufriere with its drive-thru volcano and botanical gardens. I was glad we chose the kid’s excursion with the crew dressed as swashbuckling pirates swinging from the ropes and play fighting with the kids. It made the day so much fun and light hearted.
8. Flying in a helicopter to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. As the aircraft banked to the right and the ground below us disappeared, my breath was taken away by the sheer size of the chasm.
7. Having a private tour of Concorde at the Intrepid Museum, New York City. We were in town for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the other half wanted to see the space shuttle Enterprise exhibit and the #Avgeek inside me couldn’t resist the tour of Concorde. Pokey inside, but I was in awe at everything the aircraft achieved. What I would have given to have flown on her.
6. Traversing the Atlantic Ridge in a snow storm whilst Travelling with Mother; Iceland Edition. I was wearing completely the wrong clothes, but the raw power of the weather was awesome and I cant wait to do it again (in different clothes next time!).
5. Watching the Northern Lights when Travelling with Mother; Iceland Edition. It took a while for them to come out, but when they did – WOW – and it was great to share the experience with mum.
4. Getting upgraded from economy to Upper Class FOR FREE when flying from Manchester to Orlando with Virgin Atlantic. Having never flown business class before, this was beyond exciting and I was like a kid at Christmas waiting to board. The other half played it way cooler! Upgrades are really rare but to go from the back of the plane to the front is almost unheard of. Thanks again, Virgin!
3. Seeing the Northern Lights from a luxury heated glass igloo perched on a hilltop in Finnish Lapland. The Northern Lights were the sole reason for choosing Lapland as our honeymoon destination and to see them on the 1 night we’d booked the igloo was spectacular. I cried, honestly!
2. Scoring 3 business class seats to Tokyo on Qatar Airways for less than £600pp. Seriously, I felt like I’d won the lottery; I couldn’t stop shaking! Flights to Japan are usually expensive, business class flights even more so, so this really was a moment to treasure.
1. Surprising mum with an Upper Class upgrade on the flight from Las Vegas to Manchester at the end of our epic 2 week air trip across America. The look on her little face when we walked up to the Upper Class check-in desk was priceless, the free WiFi in the lounge certainly made her happy and seeing how small she looked in the giant seat cemented the notion that only the best will do for my mother.