While most people slow down for the festive season, our merry band of bloggers, photographers and videographers have been going on even more epic adventures. December sees us basking in the natural beauty of Norway and the Maldives, taking a stroll round London’s twinkly Christmas markets and exploring quirky ways of getting under the surface of cities like Florence and Dublin.
Best of the blogs
More signs of a solitary traveller – Bobbi Fisher
Why we like it: In a world where bloggers venture to increasingly intrepid locales and undertake ever more extreme activities to stand out, there is something wonderfully refreshing about Bobbi’s simple article showcasing a selection of quirky signs she’s spotted while wandering the streets of Florence, Italy. Bobbi’s amusing observations, from flood markings to warnings that ‘David (the statue) is not here’, highlights the joy that can be garnered from everyday surroundings.
Bobbi has been travelling solo for 20 years, her blog is an ode to a lifelong longing for silence, solitude and simplicity. Find out more at acottagebythesea.net.
Guinness’s goodness to Dublin: discover the Guinness legacy – Christophe Gaillard
Why we like it: Most travellers associate Guiness with the city of Dublin, home to its original factory where tours run daily. But few travellers will be aware of the extent to which the Guiness family shaped the city. In this article Chris hunts down the lasting legacy of the Guiness family, from the cathedral they helped save to the famous public park they created. The result is an entertaining and insightful post that will leave readers with a deeper appreciation for the distinctive black tipple and those who created it.
Chris is a Dublin-based blogger who endeavours to inspire travellers to visit the Celtic regions of the world. Discover more of Chris’s travels at celticwanderlust.com.
Top Instagram shots
Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives – Vicki Garside
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Why we like it: If ever there were a more drool-worthy, idyllic scene captured on camera, we’ve yet to see it. Vicki’s snap of this deliciously shimmering pool on the shores of a Maldivian beach is not just a treat for the eyes due to its subject matter – the image is split perfectly into thirds, with the reflective depths of the water in the foreground, the lounger-lined beach and ocean in the centre, and the sun-kissed clouds unfurling into the distance. The delicate fringes of palm tree at either edge of the shot frame it expertly, and complete a totally dreamy palette of colours.
Vicki is a lawyer from the UK who walked away from her corporate wage to inspire others to see the world. Follow her on Instagram @maketimetoseetheworld.
Lofoten Islands, Norway – Michael Petrick
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Why we like it: The Northern Lights will never stop being a captivating subject to capture on camera, but Michael’s shot of those iconic, neon-green bands snaking across a night sky stands out from similar frames due to its setting amongst the rooftops of Svolvær, Norway. The contrast in light sources within the image, from the porch lights of the houses below to the emerald ribbons above is truly striking – this is a skilfully captured snap of one of nature’s most impressive phenomena.
Michael is a travel and photography enthusiast based in Dallas, Texas. Follow him on Instagram @michaelpetrick91.
Our favourite footage
Best things to do in London at Christmas – Sven Koster
Why we like it: The Christmas season may well be done and dusted, but we enjoyed taking a look back at how Londoners celebrated with Svenywhere. From seeing the twinkling lights on Carnaby Street to strolling the festive Southbank markets, there are some lovely shots of London’s attractions dressed up for Christmas throughout this video. We also particularly enjoyed the location markers and graphics which pop up throughout the video which give the viewer a sense of location and help them better plan their upcoming trip.
Sven is addicted to travelling and loves to experience destinations by getting to know the locals. Check out more of his videos on his YouTube channel Svenywhere.
Find out what else the Lonely Planet Pathfinders are up to by checking out the Pathfinders forum on Thorn Tree.