I love checking Google Analytics to see where my readers are coming from. It feels like I’m not only visiting the world, but the world is visiting me, which is especially special when I’m not on the road.
So when I saw Waegook Tom’s #ReaderLove Challenge on Twitter, I had to write something. I’m so appreciative to anyone who has clicked to my blog for even seconds. Being able to share my experiences is amazing to me, but to see people respond is extraordinary.
So thank you to my readers all over the world. Here are the top ten countries you all come from and what I like about those places.
Ich bin ein Berliner!
I visited the country for a few weeks almost five years ago now. After all the years and all the new destinations, Berlin remains one of my favorite cities in the world.
It seemed like what I imagine Paris was like when modern art was just starting out. Berlin is a very edgy city. Between it’s dark past, represented by remnants of the Berlin Wall, and it’s colorful future, represented by its art scene and graffiti.
My favorite find on the trip was Tacheles, an abandoned mall that artists took over in the 90s. People can walk though the artists residency, view work and meet the creators. The spot also has a bar on the ground floor with a rocket ship for people to sit in. Only in Berlin.
Photo of Tacheles by Joe Dunckley on Flikr
I almost visited you on my recent trip to SE Asia, but didn’t because I heard it was quite expensive and my bank account was already pretty low.
I have to admit that I was a bit weary about visiting Singapore after hearing from someone that they give you a book of rules upon arrival, that includes things like ‘No chewing gum!’. Later my Uncle told me it was the cleanest place he’d ever been and a gorgeous city, so my apprehensions disappeared.
I now constantly hear what an amazing city Singapore is and hope to visit one day soon. I’d like to swim in the infinity pool at Marina Bay Sands.
I, and I think all backpackers, can’t say enough good things about Thailand. What an absolutely amazing place!
For starters-Bangkok was not what I expected. I have to admit I thought it would be exactly like the seedy city constantly portrayed in the movies. But not even choosing to stay away from anything seedy, I saw nothing of the sort. However, I did see Wat Pho, the Grand Palace and Khao San Road. All of which were special in their own ways.
I spent six weeks traveling the country, island-hopping, partying, swimming and eating…a lot!
Since I’ve seen quite a bit of the country, I’ll mention Koh Lanta, a place I didn’t have time to visit, but would like to on my next visit to the country, and trust me, there will be a next visit.
Photo of Bamboo Island near Ko Phi Phi by Bobbi Lee Hitchon
Growing up I knew so many people from the Philippines, but never thought of visiting. Then I met a dive instructor in Australia who said, “You MUST go!”
He wasn’t kidding.
I was only suppose to visit the country for two weeks or so, but ended up staying for over two months. I saw whalesharks in Donsol, made family in Cebu City and earned my divemaster on Malapascua.
There are plenty of more places I wanted to visit, but didn’t. On the top of the list is Palawan, completely untouched and completely gorgeous. I will be back and I’ll even eat balut again.
Photo of Malapascua by Bobbi Lee Hitchon
My dream destination. A close friend and I have been talking about visiting India for years and have set 2013 as our year to go.
Why is India the number one country I want to visit?
The food, the culture, the colors, the yoga, the Taj Mahal, the Goa!
Why have I not been there yet?
I wasn’t ready and still don’t think I am.
Anyone I’ve talked to who has ever been, either loved it or hated it. Regardless, it changed them. I think India is as distant a culture to me as there is and that’s why I love it and want to go. But I want to love it. So I’ve decided to build my view of the world up before. But trust me I will get there.
Most people have told me to spend at least three months visiting. So during those three months, I hope to see it all then retreat to an Ashram in Rajasthan.
5. New Zealand
My new homeland. I have to admit that I never actually thought of visiting your country. After seeing the changing landscapes on my drive from Queenstown to Blenheim, I have no idea why.
I’ll be bold and say that New Zealand IS the most beautiful country I’ve ever been too, hands down. I’ve seen some lookers, but never in my life have I said, “Wow, look at the scenery,” more times and in New Zealand.
Now living in Wellington, I can also say that New Zealand has my favorite city in the world. As small as Wellington is, it packs so much culture. The city has so much art, sport, coffee and MUSIC! There must be a possibility of at least ten gigs in the city per night.
I live close to and work on Cuba Street, which has the most amazing vibe I’ve ever felt in any city. The kindness of the people living here will make you feel like you’re in a small town, but everything the city has to offer is that of a world-class city.
I love this country more each day and can’t wait to travel around it.
Waking up to snow in Queenstown, NZ. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon
I never really thought much into Canada until I started traveling. I hate to admit it, but amongst the world, they are easily the cooler ones in North America. People love Canadians and so do I. Every Canadian I’ve met has been laid back and great to party with.
I love you all, even though most of you get offended when you’re mistaken for Americans.
After meeting so many Canadians and learning about the country, I’m started to plan a long-term visit for after New Zealand. My first stop is Vancouver.
3. United Kingdom
I’m assuming most of my readers from here are because of Ric, a true Bollingtonian. But I want to send as personal thank you to the first country I lived in outside the United States and all it has to offer.
I became obsessed with London when I studied there in 2007. The city is so classy, so beautiful and so magical. Whenever I thought I had the whole city figured out, I’d find a new alley full of restaurants or get off at the wrong tube stop and be completely lost in a new place all over again.
I spent many nights tramping around London with Uni friends and had some of the best nights of my life, which usually ended in eating multiple hot dogs from illegal vendors.
I saw one side of the country living there and a completely different side living with people from the UK in Australia. For starters, not everyone sounds like Hugh Grant. I can’t believe how many accents you have going on there. Given I’ve fallen in love with a Northerner, the Manchester accent is my favorite but I also can’t get enough skowser, especially when spoken by Stevey G.
I’ve only spent a short amount of time visiting Ireland and Scotland, but the time was packed with some amazing experiences and breathtaking sights.
So cheers to the UK for reading, all you have to offer, but most importantly for creating my Ric!
For starters, the country is stunning. You have rainforest, amazing beaches, great cities, great diving and so much more.
Past the beauty, what an amazing place to live. I’m pretty sure it has a lot to do with the fact that you still have all your natural resources to provide money and jobs, but your lifestyle is the best in the world.
It seems that most people live comfortably in Australia. School is free, even university until students make a certain amount of earnings, the healthcare system is fantastic and wages are ridiculously high. Sure the cost of living is a bit high, but it all works out in the people’s favor I think.
Melbourne won most livable city in the world this year and I understand why.
I spent one of the best years of my life in Oz and am so thankful for the work holiday visa. I saw some incredible things and met even more incredible people.
I love Australia.
My favorite stop on my journey around the country is Port Douglas. But I missed the entire West Coast, which I regret and really hope to see one day.
1. United States
I’d say half my visitors from here are family and close friends. I very special thanks to you guys for still loving me when I’m a million miles away. Another thank you to my fellow citizens who follow this blog.
Living 22 years in the States, it’s obviously the one I know most, but is actually one I’ve traveled least. My favorite place in the USA will always be Florida. Despite all the state’s voting problems, it was the first place I ever vacationed to, which I think started my love of travel. St. Augustine, Key West, Miami, South Beach-you’re all beautiful.
I never really wanted to travel the States, because I take the country for granted, which I think a lot of people do with their homeland. But the more time I spend talking with people who have traveled around my country, the more I like the idea of buying a winnebago and hitting each state, especially Montana. This may sound weird, but I want to breath your air.
Take the #readerlove challenge and give your readers a big shout out on your blog. Write about the top ten countries where your readers come from and reason to visit that place. Leave the link on Waegook Tom’s reader love post then post the story on Twitter with the hashtag #readerlove.
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