TravelBeet Monthly Recap: January 2017

We brought in the new year with a bang – literally! We celebrated NYE in two locations this year and watched fireworks at both places. See what else we were up to in January!

Destinations Visited

Cook Islands

  • Rarotonga (5 nights)

French Polynesia

  • Tahiti (2 nights)
  • Mo’orea (3 nights)

Easter Island (6 nights)

New Zealand

  • Auckland (3 nights)

Australia

  • Perth (3 nights)
  • Melbourne (4 nights)

Egypt

  • Cairo (3 nights)

Favorite Places

Mo’orea, French Polynesia. This was our second trip to French Polynesia (the first time being Bora Bora) and we weren’t any less excited or impressed. Mo’orea was incredibly beautiful, the people were lovely, and there were lots of activities to do.

Easter Island, Chile. This place was super cool…we just stayed way too long.

Cairo/Giza, Egypt. It was amazing to finally see the pyramids.

Highlights

Celebrating NYE in two different countries. As we mentioned above (and you may have read about), we got the unique experience of celebrating New Year’s Eve twice in one year: in Australia and the Cook Islands.
Getting a free ride in Rarotonga. Post to come!
Touring Easter Island on an ATV searching for Moai. 

Having a guard dog in Easter Island. Our AirBnb had an adorable dog who acted as our guide every time we left the cottage.

Staying with a friend. One of our friends lives in Melbourne and we got to stay with him for a few days!

Watching Roger Federer play live. We happened to be in Melbourne during the Australian Open and Pete got to see Federer play in the quarterfinals before Federer went on to win the whole tournament.

Memorable Moments

Greetings in an elevator in Perth. Normally elevator encounters are super awkward, but for some reason, everyone who entered the elevators in Perth said “Hello” with a big smile.

Hearing a crazy accent in Melbourne. Sitting on the tram, a friendly couple sat across from us, and the man would not shut up about the market. Except he pronounced it “mah-ket.” He hounded the women with questions without pausing for a response: “Have you ever been to a mah-ket? Like, where they sell vegetables? Do you like mah-kets? Melbourne has a beauuuuutiful mah-ket. Would you like to go to the mah-ket?” And then a few stops later… “Here’s the mah-ket!”

Friendly welcomes in Cairo. The entire time we were in Cairo, people told us “Welcome to Egypt!”

Challenges

Stifling heat in the Cook Islands. First of all, we were there during their hottest time of year (January). Second of all, accommodation is not cheap, so I booked us the most affordable place I could find, which definitely didn’t have air conditioning. I thought it’d be fine since it had fans, but alas, ours didn’t work at all. It was comically slow. Since we arrived on New Years, no one was around to help us for the next few days. This isn’t an exaggeration: I woke up gasping for air the first morning because the heat was so suffocating.
Fun fact: Rarotonga has a bajillion public holidays after NYE, so everything was shut down for dayyyyyys.

Finding our Airbnb in Papeete, Tahiti. Post to come!

Fighting jetlag. You might’ve seen the photo we shared on Facebook of the ridiculous amount of flying we did this month.

Being a pedestrian in Cairo. Crossing roads was challenging to say the least…they don’t have sidewalks, so we had to cross some pretty large highways

All of the  “Backseesh” in Egypt. People asked for tips for everything. Even when they didn’t do anything.

The Best Things We Ate

Homemade chocolate cake from the night market in Rarotonga.

Fresh fish in Pape’ete, Tahiti. I had no idea that Tahiti was known for their raw fish, but it was incredible! Our AirBnb hosts took us to the food trucks in Pape’ete where we ate tuna and their national dish, Poisson cru, which is raw fish and veggies soaked in coconut milk and marinated with lime juice – so delicious.

Italiano hot dog in Easter Island (Pete). He was obsessed with this jumbo hot dog smothered in guacamole, tomatoes, and an inch of mayonnaise (not exaggerating).

Eggs florentine in the First Class Lounge in Abu Dhabi. This was definitely the best breakfast we’ve had all month!

The Best Place We Stayed

Our favorite accommodation during January was, unsurprisingly, the Intercontinental Moorea. Thanks to Pete’s status, we got upgraded to an overwater bungalow.

Most Popular Blog Post

Video of Palau

Other Posts Published

Pete:

Brittany:

Most Popular Instagram Photo

Brit in Etihad First Class

This one took the crown easily this month. Surprisingly, it also got us a ton of new followers!

Coming Up in February 2017

Here are our plans for February:

Africa!! Brit’s parents are visiting us in Africa and we’re beyond excited to share part of our trip with them.

  • Cape Town (1 week)
  • Stellenbosch (3 nights)
  • Uganda (1 week)
  • Zambia (2 nights)
  • Kruger National Park (5 nights)

Blog Posts: You can expect more posts about Australia and the Pacific Islands we visited this month, as well as some random posts we never published from months ago!

Thanks for tuning in for our monthly recap! We love that you’re following along. 

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