Where you wanted to be in 2020

Soooo … 2020 is almost behind us. What a year.

Sure, each year brings it’s challenges, but it’s unlikely we’ll see as pockmarked a year as 2020 for hopefully another 100 years. Hopefully …

It’s December, and the time of year when we like to look back on the most popular destination pieces we’ve run over the year.

Well, the destination pieces we could run, anyway.

Let’s think back. We started 2020 on fire, literally. Half the country was devastated by some of the worst bushfires on record. Parts of regional Australia were razed, small towns and villages decimated and much of our natural wonders and wildlife destroyed or in disarray. Even our cities were covered in thick smog, reminding the townies that our brothers and sisters outside the cities were really having a time of it.

Great start.

But we bounced back with the #emptyesky and the Road Trip Pledge. There was hope domestic tourism, at least, was looking up.

Then COVID struck. International borders closed, followed by domestic borders and then our own front doors.

Still, YourLifeChoices was adamant to keep the travel dream alive.

We couldn’t go out, but we could dream of going out and we could share that dream with you.

And the articles that received the most engagement reflected your desire to get out, even if it was only in your minds.

The top clicking article for the year was the first inkling that we may be able to travel to New Zealand. That was back in May. We’re not quite there yet, but we are a little closer.

Next in line was the well-received news in June when state borders reopened. Well, not all borders and not to all residents, but it was enough to get you out of your chair and planning an intrastate or interstate road trip.

And while 2020 eventually became the year of the road trip, you still dreamed of travel overseas. Little wonder then that Liv’s piece on Australia’s little-known gem – Norfolk Island – stirred your travel bug. So, too, did Brilliant Travels’ way to encourage you to get your ‘overseas’ fix, with great deals to some of the country’s most-loved island destinations including Fraser Island, North Stradbroke Island and Magnetic Island in Queensland, Kangaroo Island in South Australia and Rottnest Island in Western Australia.

And what ‘best of’ list would be complete without our mate Max Williams, whose recent piece on Lake Mungo and Beechworth trip between lockdowns were firm favourites. As were his memoirs to Marrakesh, Fes Medina and Alaska to name a few. We love Max’s work and we know you do, too.

Max was also joined by a friend of his, Peter Barry, who shared his experience being locked down in the Thai paradise Patong.

Peter’s story was part of a series of life in lockdown pieces we ran throughout the year. None more popular that the one that kicked it off – Dr Laura Gail Sweeney’s two-part expose on pandemic life in the then-hardest hit country, Italy.

Liv’s affordable outback breaks made the top 10, so too did Ben’s regular bit on where to travel in 2020, according to your star signs. Wonder if the stars saw COVID coming?

And two of our favourite articles of the year featured two of the world’s most wonderful women, with the irrepressible Joanna Lumley taking us to Cuba and Dame Judi Dench being bowled over by Borneo.

The year may not have been the best for travel, but we hope our content kept your dreams alive. Who knows: 2021 may be the year you realise some of them.

So, as we say goodbye to 2020, we join our Aussie travel family in saying ‘holiday here this year’. I mean, where else would you really want to be right now?

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