The last two months? Eventful. Life changing even.

So I thought I’d write a little catch up post and tell you aaallll about it.

Basically I just wanted something fun to write while I drink G+Ts and watch Bad Moms on my flight to Malawi, so I felt like I was working and not wasting the 11 hours.

My crib

Anyway, so, at the start of October I moved into my house. I’ve painted, washed, cleaned, ripped up carpets, shaved off roof ceiling tiles, pulled up carpet grippers, moved furniture and spent an absolute ruddy fortune in the process.

I had to scale back my plans from all the Pinterest boards and tear outs from magazines, to scouring the charity shops. And I found some brilliant treasures. My house is looking amazing. I’m so happy with it. I just want to wait until I’ve made the finishing touches before I show it off to you, so this lovely pic of me masking up the ceilings will do.

#houseproud

Luuuurrrvvvee it.

I was super anxious about leaving it for a week yesterday. Had to keep telling myself it’d be ok as I went to get the train. As soon as the carpets were laid upstairs it felt like home and it’s so warm and cosy when I get back from Malawi I’m going to get those Christmas decorations up.

Also, get the Baileys in, the mulled wine on and the friends round – having a fake Christmas lunch to celebrate life.

Current location: Malawi

So yeah, having said all that, I was totally ready to go to Malawi. We’ve got an incredible week planned, thanks to South Africa Airways. I’m on the trip with writers for National Geographic and Travel Africa magazines – feels kinda cool to be considered in the same category as such well-respected publications.

So the next week will be kayaking on Lake Malawi, staying in amazing lodges, going on safari, sailing, boat safaris, night drives and village visits.

Excited.

Check out my Instagram Stories – if the Wi-Fi works.

[update: I’ve already seen elephants!]

Travel blogging news

Seems a long time ago now but seeing as this post covers October and November…

I won third place in the Travel Blogger of the Year Awards at AITO! Went up on stage, picked up my award, all good fun. And then at World Travel Market (big travel conference), the team I went to St Kitts with last year and I won third place in ‘Social Media Campaign of the Year’. Got a certificate for that too :).

And in other super exciting news, I’m going to be on Sky News, at some point. I was interviewed about my thoughts on tech in hotel rooms over Skype, in anticipation of the winner of the Marriott Award for Innovation. It was fun and I’ll let you know when it’s on the TV, although, I don’t actually have Sky News so I’ll have to rely on them to tell me.

The annual pilgrimage to World Travel Market in London was fun – caught up with loads of travel blogger friends, stayed in a house with a bunch of them and went to a party where they’d named a cocktail after me. You could get the ‘VickyFlipFlop cocktail’ – gin with grapefruit and orange. Honestly, I was touched.

Also, saw my friends on the Saturday who bought me a ticket to the West End show Dream Girls and took me out for my dinner for my birthday. Love them. And the weekend before, it was my parents 40th Wedding Anniversary. Love them too.

I’ve had SUCH a good few months, seriously. Think I’m finally managing to balance this whole work / home / travel thing well.

October / November blog posts


I’ve been writing about Papua New Guinea – even made a video – and started my solo travel series too.

19 Safety Tips for Solo Travellers

7 Eating Tips for Solo Travellers

I’ve also revealed my top recommendations for where to go next year, and put together a few tips for if you fancy creating a travel blog in 2018 too.

Next month

I’ve got a weekend planned in Oxford with a ‘special friend’. I know. Probably wouldn’t normally tell you but I’ve had more than a few G+Ts at this point. We’re staying at the super fancy Manor Weston Country House Hotel for a lovely Christmassy weekend of food and drink. Big chance to introduce him to my life of travel. Quite fancy going to Blenheim Palace on the Sunday seeing as it’s so close but we’ll see – seen some lovely Insta Stories on Taylor Hearts Travel’s account…

And apart from that I’m basically just gonna be chilling in my house, getting some work done and just enjoying having a home. UNTIL…

Tenerife

Yay, Canary Islands for Christmas. Sun on Jesus’ birthday – whoda thought? Tapas during the Queen’s speech – well I never?! Turkey on the beach – yes puh-lease!

And that’s that. Caught up.

Oh, and by the way, Malawi so far – yesssahhh!

More on stuff

How to Successfully Create a Travel Blog in 2018

How to Successfully Create a Travel Blog in 2018

Showering With Elephants at Mvuu Lodge, Malawi
How to Successfully Create a Travel Blog in 2018