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The Year That Was 2017:
I can’t believe another year is about to end in a day and it’s time again to stop and look back. To take stock of our journeys, not only in terms of travel but the journeys which opened a new horizon, a new meaning for both of us and helped us to see the world with diverse perceptions.

This year we decided to  travel together more than we did in the past. We just wanted to do it. It was a joint decision. That doesn’t mean we do not travel alone, but less in number.

This year also saw us going on our epic trip of Central and East Europe spanning over 100+ days. On this trip, we visited a total of 11 countries and more than 40 towns. Most countries were new, some revisited. We did a lot of day trips also.

It was also the year when I was not really in the pink of my health.

This year we travelled abroad more than to Indian towns. Total of 14 countries and some part of India were explored. 🙂

So, without any further delay, we’ll show you a glimpse of our journeys. Only photos for each country.


Office of Santa Claus in Lapland, Finland

My first international trip was to Finland and I loved being among reindeer and learnt a lot more about Sami tribe and their culture.


Al Noor Masjid, one of the most impressive mosques of Sharjah during Sharjah Light Festival 2017

While I was in Finland, Vasu visited Sharjah. He was right in time for the Sharjah Light Festival when they have colored laser light shows on major monuments.

Our East Europe trip which we nicknamed as #NiVaEuro started from Germany, for the simple reason because we flew Lufthansa.


We explored Frankfurt, Trier, Cologne, Bad Homburg, Eltville, and Saxony region. We wish we had at least one month for Germany alone.


We flew in to Denmark where we spent 7 days in Copenhagen itself. We loved the countryside and the fact how important cycle is for the common man. The cyclists get a priority over vehicles everywhere. More on this later.


I had visited Poland earlier too but it was a first for Vasu. Out of all the countries that followed it, this was the most helpful, developed and charming country. Gdansk, Warsaw, Krakow, Wroclaw, and Jelenia Gora were the cities that we explored.


Prague was our first stop. It’s a huge city with much history which, in our opinion, is not a task of 4-5 days. So obviously we weren’t satisfied with the time we spent here. We have to come here again. We also visited Brno for 4 days and Olomuc for another couple of days. Loved these comparatively smaller towns.


Hungary was next and we spent most of our time in Budapest itself. We were travelling slow, so spending time at one place made sense. Seven days in all, the beautiful Budapest needed more time. Besides Budapest, we also visited smaller towns like Szentendre.

Most of the time we were using Eurail Pass but we also had to keep count on our Schengen days. To make it more visible, we flew in to Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria from Budapest. Vasu will tell you why, in his post about Eurail.


Bulgaria was a completely different ballgame. Very different from other European countries, not that developed in terms of infrastructure etc but still it was Europe! And any European country is better than India when we talk about infrastructure. We did a round trip of Bulgaria starting with Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna, Madara and back to Sofia.


Next was Serbia and we took a train from Sofia to Belgrade, the capital of Serbia. We will never forget this train journey for some reasons. We will also never forget the night train journey we took from Belgrade. We were singled out as Indians, our passports were seized at midnight while the train waited in the middle of nowhere and lot more. 🙂 Nevertheless, we enjoyed Serbia like any other country.


Slovakia had a lot more to offer us than expected. Again spent a week in Bratislava itself and also visited a few smaller towns like Pezinok and Tranava. We loved interacting with the locals and going to the same place at different time of the day.


Croatia was another gem though it rained a lot during our stay. I loved the trams juggling on zigzag tracks. We also visited some unknown touristy towns like Krapina, Sisak, Virazdin, Zabok etc.


If there is a country in which I would like retire, it is Slovenia. The country is extremely beautiful, full of natural beauty and very close to the Western Europe. I would like to go there again for a longer period to stay.


The first stop in Austria was Westendorff, a small comparatively non touristy ski town and it’s kind of a place where you can spend days together. Surrounded by snow-capped Alps, it has just around 200 houses. We visited this town to attend the Almabtrieb festival. We also visited other known cities like Innsbruck which we loved, Salzburg where we went to Sound of Music tour and experienced a few more attractions. We spent nearly a week in Vienna to round off and went to Munich to catch our flight back home.


Switzerland in December was for unveiling & inauguration of Charlie Chaplin’s ice statue on top of Europe Jungfrau, on his 40th memorial day. I was part of international media and was representing India. We visited Interlaken, Vevey, Grindelwald. It was a nostalgic trip as I was visiting the country after 19 years !
After the official tour got over, I stayed back and went to Geneva to explore the city on my own. I went to all those places where we lived and used to go and I found myself smiling all the time. 🙂


After coming from Europe, we made short trips to Delhi, and Lucknow. Lucknow was the first time for both of us. Lucknow has so much history and food that we could easily extend our trip by another week.

Next year, we are travelling from January itself. All domestic personal trips.

Now you decide for me, how the year 2017 treated us. 😀

P.S.- You may read previous annual recaps here.
The Year that was 2015
How was the Year 2011

If you want to travel places with us, I suggest you to join us on my Facebook Travel page.
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50 thoughts on “The Year That Was 2017”

  1. Wow, what an impressive travel year! The Sharjah looks stunning during the Light Festival, looks like you picked the perfect time to travel there. Happy New Year!

  2. Nisha Ji – Crux of this re-cap is that we did not meet in 2017. Let us make sure we meet in 2018.
    Wish you and Vasu Ji a very Happy 2018. Stay healthy and keep travelling.

  3. Wow, you have been on some amazing adventures in 2017! I love many of these places myself – Budapest is a favourite. I hope that your 2018 travels are equally as amazing! Bons Voyages!

  4. What an amazing year of travel! We actually visited a lot of these places, too, but I would have loved to have seen Santa’s Office in Finland! And I really want to get to Austria – it looks so beautiful. Here’s to a happy new year of traveling!

  5. So which was your favourite trip? Copenhagen is definitely on my own wish list – and I went to both Prague and Brno last year but I’m keen to explore more of the Czech Re – as you said the smaller cities are lovely

    1. All countries have something to offer and it’s difficult to choose. 🙂

      Yes, Czech has many other places too. But won’t mind visiting Prague & Brno again. 🙂

  6. Whaaaaa — over 100+ days in Central and East Europe?! That is epic, indeed! Fascinating to know Slovenia is the spot you’d most like to retire. I haven’t been there, but am now intrigued!

  7. 2017 definitely was a busy year for you. I saw some familiar countries on your list (Finland and Bulgaria brought back warm memories) and some that are yet to see. The curious one for me was Slovenia. Couple years ago while researching our next destination, I was seriously considering Ljubljana and Slovenia in general, but ultimately passed it in favor of Sofia. For the past couple months, I keep hearing about Slovenia as one of the best destinations in Europe. Frankly, I am wondering whether the Slovenian tourism authority did an outstanding outreach job or did I miss something. Thank you for sharing. Happy travels in 2018!

  8. What an incredible year you had! It looks like 2017 (and Europe) was good to you! I hope you have an incredibly 2018 as well. I need to check out your posts on Prague. I’m dying to get there.

  9. Your trip is exactly the trip I want to take! I have been to a few of those places in Europe – Prague, Salzburg, and a couple of stops in Germany. I fell in love and want to go back. Budapest is high on my list! It sounds like you had a very memorable year of travel.

  10. What a fun year! You traveled to most of my favorite European countries. I’m very jealous of those Germany and Bulgaria itineraries. 😉 Germany is my fave and I loved what little bits of Bulgaria that I saw. Cheers to a happy and prosperous 2018!

  11. WOW! What a comprehensive list of places to travel. You really had a blast in 2017 traveling to such an amazing list of countries. All the countries you traveled are so beautiful and unique. I would be happy if I could follow even half of what you achieved in 2017.

  12. 100+ days in Europe – that was epic! Glad that you had a fantastic time and I’m sure your #NiVaEuro trip will be something to remember and cherished for a long time 🙂

    All the best for 2018..may there be many more travels for you!

  13. Wow that’s a lot of travel in 2017! Love the variety of the countries that you visited. Also good to see that you both take solo trips as much as you take them together. Which was your fav country/city from all of these?

  14. You have such an awesome year, guys! I’ve been wanting to spend a Christmas holiday in Lapland. Hopefully sooner rather than later. Can’t wait to read your new adventures in 2018. Happy New Year!

  15. I still haven’t made it to Croatia but it looks like everything I could ever want and more. Slovenia and Slovakia were great surprises, such rich culture and affordable prices. 😉 Loved Switzerland but way too expensive for my taste. Looks like 2017 was a fabulous year!

  16. You visited some of my favorite places, like Budapest. And you also visited some places I just haven’t made it to yet, despite having living in Europe for nearly nine years now. Looks like it was an awesome year of travel for you!

  17. Wow! You had so many amazing adventures! I’m impressed that you were able to cover so much territory even when your health wasn’t at its peak. Al Noor Masjid looks absolutely incredible during the light festival.

  18. That was a very full year for you! Europe is full of wonders and I am lucky to live in France, with all these a few hours away from me. Budapest looks impressive, I haven’t had the chance to visit yet. But I can only agree about Slovenia, a really wonderful country!

  19. Sounds like quite the incredible 2017 you had! Though I do hope that 2018 brings you better health 🙂 I’ve so enjoyed reading about your journeys through Europe, like Finland, Germany, and Prague. And you got absolutely stunning photos that has inspired me to want to visit more of Eastern / central Europe. Poland in particular is on my list now!

    Wishing you a wonderful 2018!

  20. How wonderful! Your 2017 looks jam packed with travels with amazing destinations and lovely memories, I am sure. Here’s wishing you both a happy, healthy and successful 2018!

  21. …..So the year of 2017 was very fruitful to you . 100+days in Central Europe …was amazing and you traveled a lot . Best wishes for the new year .

  22. What a fun post. Your 2017 looks like it was a fabulous year of travel. Switzerland is on my bucket list and I would have loved to been on that December train! All the best in 2018- It looks like you will have to travel a lot to top 2017!

  23. What an amazing list? You surely had visited lot many, beautiful destinations in 2017. I loved your idea of traveling together. Wish we follow your steps and at least achieve half of this. Happy New Year and wish you guys more travels.

  24. It’s absolutely phenomenal how many places you travelled to this year Nisha…and that too at your own pace. You and Vasu set travel goals which are impossible to meet, and inspire us all to get out more often and explore the world around!

    Plus, it was absolutely a pleasure to explore Finland together with you – here’s to more travels in the coming year, hopefully I am also able to join you guys for some of it 🙂

  25. I have been wondering about all of your European content rolling out. Now that I know that you were on an 100+ day trip through Europe it makes sense. You have had some great articles come out and I have enjoyed them all.

    How scary it must have been to have your passports seized on a night train. Hopefully, it was more of a logistic delay and not threatening or escalated tensions. That would be truly awful.

  26. You had a busy year! You saw so much of Europe. I still have not been most of Eastern Europe, but they are on my bucket list for the future. Looking forward to reading about your travels in 2018.

  27. Hey! I am partly surprised and partly happy that you spend multiple days in Brno, my home city in the Czech Republic. It’s not the obvious touristic choice! Also, I hope next time you will get more time in Prague.

  28. Wow it’s been a busy 2017 for you, lovey places you have explore- Serbia and Bulgaria is on my list. Have a safe travels and hope 2018 will be as busy as last year!

  29. You lived a Dream year. I remember you telling me that you were planning your Europe trip and it was going to be one whole quarter. You really made that happen and with such fascinating places. Some of them are soooo high on my list – like Croatia and Serbia. Waiting to see your adventures this year

  30. Just love this country that is Finland. While Finland is a high-technology welfare state, Finns love to head to their summer cottages in the warmer months to enjoy all manner of relaxing pastimes including sauna, swimming, fishing and barbecuing during the short but bright summer.

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