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Tenerife was the first of the Canary Islands that I visited a few years ago. The reason for the trip was my wish to experience the second biggest Carnaval in the world after Rio de Janeiro. And it was amazing! I was even more impressed by its lovely nature parks with volcano and moon landscapes, the diversity of plants, sweet little towns loaded with history, delicious food, a lot of sun and mild temperatures in February! So after this trip I was sure that I have to visit the remaining six islands of this beautiful and very special place for me!
You know you want a wide selection of wonderfully weird things to do in Austin, Texas! I lived in Austin for years, so the city is near and dear to my heart. There are so many wacky things to do in this place. From the funky goodness of South Congress to the Cathedral of Junk (made of...yes...junk) to Chicken Poo Bingo, Austin has a totally unique vibe. My father attended graduate school at UT in the 70's, and I'd get to visit the campus with him occasionally. I grew up on Willie Nelson and Schlotzky's. I worked in an art gallery on 6th street after college and fell in love with my husband in those years. We've taken romantic strolls through Laguna Gloria, played mini-golf at Peter Pan's under the giant T-Rex, and held hands while moonlight snorkeling at Barton Springs. The whole city makes me feel young and in love with happy memories! Seeing the bat colony rise into the sky at dusk is something you should see at least once in a lifetime. And don't skip Uncommon Objects...they have everything you don't know you want yet. Do you hear that, taxidermied tiny alligator wearing a party hat? I'm coming for you. Shiner Bock ice cream from Amy's will be the perfect end to any day. Happy Austin-ing!
I moved to Vancouver Island 10 years ago (from UK) and fell in love with its raw beauty. The coastline is rugged and beautiful with both rocky cliffs and some enormous sandy beaches. There are hundreds of islands just off the coast and many opportunities for whale watching, kayaking and winter surfing. The climate is temperate rain forest so inland there are forests and lakes galore with thousands of miles of hiking and biking trails. The terrain is largely mountainous, but there are also rolling pastures with lots of small farms, vineyards and an enthusiastic local food scene. I live in Duncan, known as the City of Totems, which has a large and popular Saturday farmers market. Victoria is the capital city of BC and is rich with history, good food and culture. The Inner Harbour is a lovely place to walk around to see the boats, historic buildings and the BC Museum. Vancouver is just over an hour away by car ferry or 15 minutes by float plane.
This illustration is an autobiographical map of many of the places dear to me. It's got anything from stupid and fun things I did as a kid, to my girlfriend Meg & I buying our first house this year and doing it up.
And lots of tea, beer and coffee!
This place is special to me because it has opened me the doors to the world of whales and has given me inspiration, good friends, illustration projects, work, contacts, relax, adventures and even an art exhibition at the Húsavík Whale Museum! Every time I’m there, I feel like being home and there is always something good to do! Go see the whales, relax at the sea baths looking at the bay, get inspired by the mountains, a coffee or a tasty lobster soup, explore the town museums, walk around the harbor or near the river, or just breathe and feel that you exist! This is my heart’s home, a place where I’ve always belonged to.
This place is special to me because it's where we go on vacation every summer to visit my mother-in-law, who moved to the town of Carvoeiro over 20 years ago. Drawing this map, I kept thinking of all the wonderful reasons I love it here. The rocky cove beaches, the amazing azulejos (tiles) covering the outsides of buildings and insides of churches, delicious fresh fish (grilled sardines!), the scent of eucalyptus trees up on Monchique, where you can refill your water bottle directly from the spring, the beautiful doors everywhere, the crystalline turquoise water and deep blue skies, the curious cork trees halfway stripped of their bark, (and shops that sell everything made of cork), the dolphin sightings, the delicious pastry called pastel de nata (custard cups...think flan pie!), the fabulous soaps I bring back, the hill towns and medieval castles. The soulful fado singing. The fields of crooked almond trees, and almond liqueur. The piri-piri hot sauce that I'm obsessed with! A million stars pinned against a clear black night sky. Sooooo many good things. My daughter took her first steps and went to her first beach here, on Praia Grande. The weather is always sunny and perfect, and each time we go it's a combination of visiting all of our favorite places (like Porches, for pottery) and trying new ones. One time we drove to Sagres which is the most southwestern point in Portugal. You can walk out to the tip of the cape, atop tall vertical cliffs, surrounded by water on 3 sides. The place is magical and really feels like the edge of the world. A nearby beach made of smooth black rocks is a good place to watch surfers. The people in the Algarve are so friendly and welcoming, it really is an easy place to just be. By the end of our visit we always realize how this place has taught us to slow down and relax.
A map of the koala territories that I know of along the Murray River at Cobram & Barooga. I grew up on the banks of the Murray River in Corowa (just upstream from this map), but there was no koala population there. Since moving back to the area, it has been wonderful to find that the koalas are returning thanks to a very successful relocation and breeding program. I hope that this map will inspire people to visit our beautiful part of the world.
This place is special to me because of the wonderful chilhood memories I have there. I grew up in Brussels and I remember my weekends being full of museum visits, bike rides and waffle breaks. What inspired me the most to create this map was to think about all the places I go to when I have international friends coming for a short visit and I have to introduce them to my hometown in only a weekend. You can be sure that food is always a big part of the experience!
A map of Arizona, the Grand Canyon state! With jaw-dropping sunsets, and natural wonders, fantastic animals, and beautiful cactus of all shapes and sizes. Arizona is my home state, and I never get tired of exploring all the natural beauty and culture it has to offer.
This place is special to me because it's where I grew up in. After living in the US for the past year, making this illustration brought memories and homesickness! These are just some of the many fun spots to visit in my home country, called the land of lakes and volcanos (cause we have sooo many!), Nicaragua. Scuba diving! A lake with freshwater sharks! Volcano boarding! Come visit!
I'm not from Orlando, but I like to say that our little family is "from" Orlando since my husband and I both went to school here, met, got married, and had two babies in the City Beautiful. During our time as Orlando residents, we loved to get takeout from a restaurant or grab a drink + dessert from a cafe or pick up fixin's for a perfect picnic and sit together under the warm sunshine in one of Orlando's many green parks. We also have a thing for books and our idea of a lovely day is lounging on a picnic blanket with good reads and great eats.
This place is special to me because it's one of the most magical place in the world and it has changed my life! I have met people there that have been so inspiring and I've experienced so many great things that it literally influenced the way I live today. I've been living a nomadic life for 6 years now travelling across 4 continents and nowhere else in the world have I seen so many pristine beaches and native wildlife in such a small area. Can you believe there are more than 100 beaches in less than 160km (100miles) of coast?! And how about meeting kangaroos, wombats, cockatoos, dolphins, whales and many more birds and animals almost on a daily basis?! You thought that would be it but you can also see powerful blowholes, impressive waterfalls, visit significant cultural places, eat at great vegetarian cafes, hike in the bush, surf... A friend of mine living in Huskisson one day described it as "living in Paradise"... well I totally agree on that!
Low Moor is the neighbourhood I grew up. I have fond memories of growing up here. As a kid, me and my friends loved playing out, having adventures and riding our bikes round the area. We only stopped playing for dinner time and the ice cream van! We actually used to have walkie talkies in case anyone spotted the ice cream van a few streets over and could alert everyone else! The "big wheel" is an iron monument in the heart of the neighbourhood which commemorates the local iron works heritage. We use to hang out here and try to climb it! The big puddle was HUGE and we all used to ride our bikes through it! I have fond memories of the church too. Before it was turned into flats, the hall used to be the hub of the community with kids clubs and events. Even though my family weren't Christian, we were still very much welcomed there.
I lived in Portugal 20 years ago and Lisbon was a city of which I have many fun memories. I'm FINALLY getting back for a visit in a few months, so I'm trying to remember the old (like CENTURIES old) faves, as well as check out all the new things which have appeared in recent years (hello vegan sushi and drag queen cooking classes!). Staying in a 5th floor walkup with no elevator, so I'll be sure to work up an appetite for eleventy million pastéis de nata.
This place is special to me because I have moved to Trier from Moscow 2 years ago and i have totally fallen in love with this place. Trier is over 2,000 years old – making it the oldest city in Germany with an astonishing 8 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. There is a lot to see in downtown Trier with traces of the Roman times almost everywhere you look. The city is often referred to as the “Rome of the North” because it served as the key city of the Roman northern territories. There are many beautiful vineyards located around Trier which are perfect for taking walks. But there’s plenty of nature inside the city of Trier as well. Old trees rise among the historic buildings, casting welcome shade in the summertime. Trier has a special atmosphere all of its own. It is an ancient city but young at heart.