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State of travel and my favorite pictures of 2023

The reporting year was comparable to the previous one in terms of the amount of travel, which suggests a measure of normalization in the post-Covid era. I visited 5 foreign countries (UK, Italy, Turkey, Belize, Guatemala), of which two were first-time visits. Aside from Edinburgh and Speyside in Scotland and the historic core of Istanbul, all of the points on my travel itineraries this year were new to me – exploring unfamiliar locales makes me especially happy these days. Add in an odd business trip, and it was a fairly reasonable traveling output.

World Heritage pursuits took a bit of a backseat in planning, so I only added 5 sites to my roster (plus one that was inscribed this year that I had visited in the past). While I still prioritize visiting such sites when they are within reach, it appears that I am no longer prioritizing the types of destinations with a large number of WH sites.

One of the planned trips next year is a multi-leg expedition that will remediate that trend a bit, but even that will at most increase my count by just a handful. Another trip is planned around a football game in a largely familiar locale that I intend to re-discover. There will likely be a December family trip to somewhere warm. In between, a few more business-and-pleasure trips within the US. So, technically, it’s quite a few more plans for the upcoming year than we had at the same point a year ago. Somehow, I still feel it’s far from enough.

Following the established tradition, here are a few shots that I like the most from the year past. Since my photo development process is weeks and sometimes months behind the timing of the respective trips, pictures developed in 2023 qualify for inclusion here even if the trip took place in 2022. The same logic will hold for pictures the most recent trips of 2023 which are yet to be processed.

The mix of old and new in Panama City.
Panama City
The star of Costa Rican animal scene.
Costa Rica
A smaller member of Costa Rican fauna that allowed me to capture itself.
Costa Rica
The cardboard policeman on a Scottish back road that threw me for a loop at first.
Scotland
The magnificent in any weather castle of Eilean Donan.
Eilean Donan, Scotland
The approach view of Bosa, Sardinia…
Bosa, Sardinia
… and a colorful fragment of Bosa’s historic quarter.
Bosa, Sardinia
The coastal view towards Alghero.
Alghero, Sardinia
Another example of the color palette of a Sardinian village…
Sardinia
… and another Sardinian coastal perspective.
Sardinia
The view towards Galata Tower from the terrace of Süleymaniye Mosque.
Istanbul