Oh the places you will go! And trust me, in 2017 I went and kept going. In the month of July alone I spent 3 weekends away from home and loved every minute of it! Travel is one way I keep myself rejuvenated and happy. It gives me the chance to escape stress, clear my mind, and experience new things.

If you don’t travel often I encourage you to do so in 2018. There are plenty of opportunities for you to travel if you search for them. And trust me, I’m quick to find a reason to get up and go! Trips for work, birthdays and even to reunite with friends and family. Going by plane, car or even train. To places I’ve been before and places I’ve never seen. As 2017 comes to an end, I thought it may be nice to do a round up of the places I went this year. Hopefully, it will encourage you to visit somewhere new or revisit an old favorite in 2018.

Related: How to Prepare for a Road Trip

South Beach, Miami

Starting your year off with a trip is very refreshing! You get to unwind after the holidays and escape the cold if you’re headed somewhere warm. For my best friend’s birthday in January, we went down to Miami for a girl’s trip. I’ve been to Florida plenty of times but always with family and never with friends so I was super excited about this trip. My favorite part: the food! We ate at somewhere different everyday and there was nothing that I didn’t like. I tried Thai food for the first time, munched on some conch fritters, and went to The Sugar Factory. We explored the beach, went shopping, and partied it up at our hotel’s hookah bar. Miami is always a great quick getaway when you just need some fun in the sun.

Related: Exploring South Beach

Brooklyn, New York

Where Brooklyn at?! *inserts Milly Rock* While Miami might be a quick plane ride away….New York is a short drive from DC. It’s also one of my favorite places to visit. There is so much to do and so much to see. There are so many events and pop-ups that happen in the city that you’re bond to experience something new. This trip to New York was for Curlfest, an annual natural beauty festival. Curlies and Naturalistas alike come from all over to show up and show out! There’s nothing like being around people who have the same interest as you. From the hairstyles to the freebies, it was definitely a great time! The trip was very quick but still fun nonetheless. Quick trips are the best when you need to clear your mind.

Disney World, Florida

The big kid in me has always loved Disney World. So when I got the chance to go this year with my boyfriend + his family I definitely couldn’t pass it up. I was in high school the last time I went and this time I was pushing 25 but the excitement was still the same. The drive down to Florida was the most intense part. Almost 24 hours in the car because we stopped to visit family along the way but it was definitely worth it. I was grateful that my boyfriend and I chose to fly back though (don’t think I would have survived more time in the car). Disney is one of those places where they have something for everyone. From the adults to the kiddos. The Pandora World of Avatar was my favorite part of all the parks. The lines for it were long of course but so were all the other lines. I definitely recommend planning your days out in advance though. 1 park can take up your whole day so we didn’t even get a chance to hit the pool.

Mall of America, Minnesota

The one great thing about having a full-time job: paid travel! In July, I also got to head to the University of Minnesota for a work conference. I won’t lie….when I originally found out where we were going I WAS NOT excited. What’s in Minnesota? Why not California? But then it hit me that I could visit the largest mall in the US. And the one thing I love besides food is shopping! The only downside about work trips is you have to schedule everything around your schedule. And with an intense conference schedule I was able to visit Mall of America twice but only on short time periods so I didn’t get to see all of it. But it was definitely everything I imagined. All of my favorite stores + some I have never heard of. An amusement park + aquarium if you aren’t really into shopping (pshhh). And a bunch of restaurants. Minnesota definitely wasn’t what I expected. It was pretty cold for July *inserts Lil Yatchy lyrics.* And the transit system is definitely nothing like the one in DC. But I enjoyed myself.

Made in America, Philly

Up until recently I was not a fan of big festivals because of crowds. It all goes back to when I was in college and Chris Brown came to the local mall. Talk about hundreds of screaming girls! It just made me uneasy and uncomfortable so I’ve avoided crowds at all costs. But I could not pass up the chance to go to Made in America, Jay-Z  2-day music festival. It’s held the first weekend in September which is my birthday month; even more reason for me to go! And I’m definitely glad I went. The girls and I had so much fun eating cheesesteaks, having Henny for Breakfast, and people watching at Fat Tuesday’s. Not to mention the lineup was pretty good; it included Cardi B, Migos, 21Savage, J.Cole and Jay-Z himself. We also booked our hotel before tickets even dropped so we were able to stay walking distance from the venue.

Las Vegas, Nevada

If you checked out my post about my trip to Nevada you know I wasn’t there to gamble and party. I actually went for a baby shower. And while the reason was unconventional, I still got to do some of the things Vegas is known for. I won’t say much about this trip in case you have already read about it. But I will say it was a great close out to 2017.

Have you planned any trips for 2018? Let me know in the comments!