Some of my lovely friends gave me a fabulous photo frame for my birthday and as I decided to make it travel related it gave me a great opportunity to go rummaging through photos on my laptop and even a few in old packets.

One of the reasons I started my blog was to create a lasting memory of some of the amazing trips I’ve been lucky enough to take and offer ideas and suggestions to others who share my love for new places and experiences.

Here’s what’s in my frame. What would be in yours?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANew York with my Dad. My friend Miriam and I took him there for a week the year after my mum passed away. Even though he has dementia now he remembers what a great time we had living like locals in an apartment near Bloomingdales. This shot was taken on Roosevelt Island, probably not an obvious stop on the tourist trail but offers great views of the East side of the Manhattan skyline. I’ve been to the Big Apple a fair few times, but if you’re a first time visitor my post New York for Starters has some tips on what not to miss.

Cambodia 039Angkor Wat at sunrise.  I was so pleased to capture the colour of the sky here. It was a magical experience and a lot less frenetic than sunset when the crowds gather early to get a good spot. Cambodia was one of those places that makes me feel a bit humble. The people went through so much and as result a whole generation is all but missing, but they were some of the happiest, smiliest people I’ve ever met.

IMG_1522Champagne cocktails at Amber in Barcelona. After a 10 year gap in girls weekends this was a wonderful one to celebrate a significant birthday with the friends who bought me the photo frame. It was so good I wrote two posts – one with highlights of what to see and do and the other all about the great places to eat and drink in my favourite Spanish city.

IMG_1127Room with a fabulous view of Lake Atitlan. I could literally look at this photo all day – and sometimes do as its my iPad home screen. Lying in a hammock with a good book and this view is one of my best memories of my visit to Guatemala. Read more about it here.

Sydney Opera HouseSydney in the sunshine. A blue sky is one of my favourite things in the world and it makes Australia’s most stunning building look even more fabulous. The best thing about the Opera House is getting up close and realising its not all joined up and there are lots of different buildings. The ultimate optical illusion.

Lindos June 2009 052Lindos, on the Greek Island of Rhodes, is one of the few places I’ve been to multiple times. The first time I went I was 21 and my most recent trip was 5 years ago when I was pleased to see very little had changed. There are more hotels outside the village now, but inside its narrow streets are still traffic free and perfect for shopping, eating in rooftop tavernas and invariably lots of drinking!

CIMG1781I think anyone would recognise this as being Havana as these classic cars are synonymous with the Cuban capital. It really adds to the colour and vibrancy of the city which throbs with music coming from every shop, bar, restaurant and home. If you’re thinking of going then do add more to the itinerary than Havana and the beach, there’s lots more to see in Cuba. Posts with ideas coming soon!

MPGetting to Machu Picchu in Peru from London took a really long time but it was so worth it. This is a landscape version of the photo in the frame and I think gives a good feel for the scale of the famous Inca site which is nearly 8,000 ft above sea level. It could have taken longer but I took the train rather than hike the trail.  Partly because I didn’t have long to acclimatise for it, but also because I wanted to be back in Cusco for the Inti Raymi winter solstice festival, an amazing time to be in the city.

The other photos in the frame are portrait which don’t work as well as landscape in a post, so I’ll drop them into a gallery below with captions. Just click on one of the photos to scroll through the gallery. Hope my happy travel memories inspire the creation of new ones for you.