2022 Year in Review – A year of travel with Chimptrips

by Jan

Our travel review of 2022 looks back on the Chimptrips’ year of travel and adventures.  It’s a round-up of the destinations we’ve visited, the best places we’ve seen and the highlights of our days out.

2022 was a very different year for travel.  With the roll out of vaccinations and fewer restrictions, we were more confident in booking foreign travel.  We also got to catch up on some trips that were planned pre-covid.

The travel highlights of the year were New York, Snowdonia, and Porto.  We managed to visit 4 other countries, and stay in a treehouse, granary barn, tents, ski apartment, hotels, and cottages.

It was an extremely successful year for our travel blog.  Site traffic was up by 250% on last year and our Domain Authority improved from 15 to 26.  We are thankful to our readers who follow our travels and come back for ideas and inspiration.

So come on a journey with us as we recap our best travel moments in 2022.

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Skiing in La Plagne, France

Our travel review of 2022 starts on a high with a skiing trip to the Alps, France.  This was our first foreign travel in 24 months!  The last international trip had been skiing in Arc 1800 just before lockdown in 2020.

Two boys in mountains dressed for Skiing, La-Plagne, France

Although the borders to Europe were open, covid laws brought fresh challenges to our journey, including online covid tests and EU digital covid certificates.

In addition, our first self-drive to the mountains brought issues of its own.  A late start, half-term traffic, and an extremely travel-sick child are never a good combination for getting up a mountain!

However, once we arrived, we had a fantastic week and rediscovered our skiing legs.   La Plagne is an amazing resort, with a good choice of skiing for all levels, great snow conditions and facilities.

Le Troyes & Reims, France

Colourful Medieval buildings, Troyes, France

The return journey was far more relaxed.  An extremely early departure (with the 4am piste basher!) allowed time to visit to the medieval city of Troyes.  From there, we headed to Reims for a quick visit to the magnificent cathedral and an overnight stopover.


A week in New York, USA

One of the highlights of our travel review of 2022 was our trip to New York in the Easter holidays.

March had been a miserable month, as one by one we succumbed to covid-19.  As our US trip approached, it was still touch-and-go whether the last child would test negative in time (and whether we’d leave him behind if he didn’t!).  Luckily, at the last minute he was clear, and we were all set to go.

View of New York Skyline with Empire State in foreground

Based in the centre of Manhattan, we had 8 days to visit all the iconic landmarks and major attractions.

New York was exhausting!  It was a fun-packed itinerary, but we did so much sightseeing that I almost needed a holiday to recover!  I wouldn’t change a thing though – we loved it.  Read more:  18 best things to do in New York City

Brighton & London

Brightly Coloured Hove beach huts, Brighton, UK

Back home, we spent the 2nd half of the Easter holidays on day trips closer to home.  The kids had their first visit to Brighton on the South coast. It was a fun-packed day out with visits to the Palace, the Upside-Down House, and BAi360, Brighton’s famous viewing tower.  We even managed to squeeze in a bike ride to Rottendean.

Then, we headed to London, where we enjoyed a double whammy of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.  What a treat!


Exploring Snowdonia National Park, Wales

treehouse view from sky, Machynlleth, Wales, UK

A treehouse stay in Machynlleth, North Wales

May was a very exciting travel month, as we finally got to stay in a Welsh treehouse.  We’d booked our Machynlleth treehouse weekend back in 2019, but lockdowns meant we couldn’t rebook until this year.  It was a magical experience, which allowed us to enjoy some off-grid living.

Two Boys on rock during Hike to cemmaes wind farm, Wales, UK

Snowdonia, North Wales

As we’d driven so far, we extended the trip so we could explore Snowdonia National Park.  Our new accommodation was a small miner’s cottage in Betwys-y-Gamon, which was our base for the next 6 days.

So, what did we do?  Hiking, beaches, castles, lakes, mountains, and some of the most stunning scenery ever.  Plus, the pretty villages of Beddgelert, Betwys-y-Coed and the Italiente village of Portmeirion.  One of the trip highlights was a day exploring underground with Go Below Adventure.

Click here to find out more about our itinerary in Snowdonia.

Chichester & Bosham, West Sussex

Chichester Cathedral, Chichester, Sussex, UK

A race at Goodwood with the school’s racing team took us all to West Sussex.  So whilst the twins were driving, we took the opportunity of an early morning visit to Chichester and lunch by the sea at Bosham.


The New Forest National Park, Hampshire

In July the Chimptrips family went their separate ways.  The boys headed to the Isle of Wight for a week of fun with the Explorer Scouts.  So, we took the opportunity of no kids to have a weekend getaway in the New Forest.

Air BnB Accomodation, New Forest, Hampshire, UK

Staying in a former granary, we enjoyed a slower pace of dining, indulging in lunches at the Pig in Brockenhurst and the Elderflower in Lymington.  We did some beautiful walks in the New Forest and stopped off at Buckler’s Hard.

Weymouth, Dorset

Sailboats in Weymouth Harbour Views, Weymouth, Dorset, UK

At the end of July, I was off to Dorset again for weekend getaway in Weymouth.  I had a whistle-stop tour from a local, including the beach, harbour, and day trip to Portland Bill.  It was a lovely weekend, with lots of sightseeing and laughs.  I only wish I could have stayed longer.

Read more:  A weekend break in Weymouth, Dorset


Mudeford & Christchurch, Dorset

Two boys looking over their buckets whilst crabbing at Mudeford Quay, Christchurch, Dorset, UK

The start of August welcomed the UK’s mini heatwave, so we organised a very spontaneous weekend by the sea.

Top of the kids’ wish list for things to do in the summer was crabbing in Mudeford, Dorset, so it seemed a good idea to stay nearby.  I booked a last-minute tent which was already pitched but had none of the luxuries of glamping.  However, it was cheap and easy, as I didn’t have to take any equipment.

Plus the location in Burton was an ideal base for getting to the Dorset beaches early.  It was a perfect break, with hours spent cooling off in the sea and time to explore Christchurch and Hengistbury.

The Gower Peninsular, Wales

As you read our travel of review of 2022, you’ll notice we did a lot of travelling at the start of the year.  It was expensive, so we really needed something cheap for the summer.  There was nothing for it than to dust off the family tent and camping equipment and head back to Wales.

View of Worms Head, Rhossili Bay, Gower Peninsula

This time we returned to Oxwich Bay and spent a week revisiting our favourite haunts on the Gower Peninsular.  The Gower Peninsular has some amazing beaches, with long stretches of golden sand and relatively few people.  We had a day out at Rhossili, where we saw the sunflowers and took a precarious hike to Worm’s Head.

We did some fabulous coastal walks around Gower and ate fish and chips by the pier in Mumbles.  Perfect.


As we headed back to school our 2022 Year of Travel returned to weekends away and days out.  Sadly, at the start of September, HRH Queen Elizabeth II passed away, so we visited Windsor to pay our respects.

Boat on River Douro, Porto, Portugal

Porto, Portugal

Shortly afterwards, I jetted off to Porto, Portugal’s second city.  I really fell in love with this little city.  There was nothing about it I didn’t like.

Spanning the Douro River, this beautiful city offers the UNESCO area of Ribeira on one side and the port houses of Vila Nova de Gaia opposite.  There’s loads of amazing buildings and plenty of bars to stop and enjoy the scenery.

Click here for all the details of the 3-day itinerary in Porto.


Canterbury & Chichester

Medieval Houses and waterway, Canterbury, Kent, England

Canterbury, Kent

At the start of October, I made a return visit to the historic city of Canterbury, Kent.  We’d been last year during our stay in Sandwich.

This time I knew what I was looking at, thanks to a city walking tour with Canterbury Tours. What a fantastic way to discover the history of the city, the pilgrims, and the murder in the cathedral.  I’d really recommend it for some of the most gruesome facts about the city and its people.

A hike over the beautiful Kent Downs and a very tasty lunch at the Tiger Pub in Stowting completed this minibreak in Kent.

Click here to find our more:  Day trip to Canterbury: How to spend a day in Kent’s medieval city

Chichester & Boxgrove, West Sussex

Halnaker Windmill, West Sussex, UK

Another trip to Chichester in October gave us the opportunity to visit Sussex’s famous landmark, the Halnaker Tree Tunnel.

Having seen many photos of this iconic tree tunnel, I was keen to see the real thing.  And there’s no better way than by doing the Halnaker Windmill Trail.  This circular route starts with a walk through the Halnaker Tunnel, but continues up to the Halnaker Windmill and returns via Boxgrove Priory.


Surrey, Hampshire & Berkshire

Autumn colours, Badgers Bowl at Winkworth Arboretum, Goldaming, Surrey

As autumn approached, we made the most of the mild weather exploring locally.  We returned to the Vyne in Hampshire, as last time the house had been shut.

Plus, we had some stunning walks at Winkworth Arboretum in Surrey and Windsor Great Park to enjoy the amazing autumn colour around Surrey.


Surrey & Berkshire

Illuminated trees reflected in lake at Windsor Park, UK

A minor leg operation meant that December was mostly a month of reflection and little travel for Chimptrips.  However, I did a good job of bringing Christmas forward with an early visit to Windsor Illuminations and Woking Pantomime*.  These were both fantastic Christmas events, which really kick-started the festive season.

Click here for the best events at Christmas in Surrey, Berkshire, and Hampshire.

*AD:  We were given press tickets for both events, but opinions are our own!

Looking forward to 2023

As always, I start getting excited about making travel plans for the next year.  2023 is going to be very exciting, as Mr CT has been granted a sabbatical by work.  This means we can take an extended holiday in the summer.  Plans for Thailand are already well underway.

Plus, a friend is having a special birthday, so how better to celebrate than a weekend in Malaga?  As for the rest of the year, we’ll have to wait and see.

We wish all our readers a fantastic 2023.  We’d love to hear your best travel moments from 2022 in the comments.

If you want to catch up on travels from previous years, you may also enjoy:

*Disclaimer: Some posts on this site contain affiliate links.  If you buy something through these links, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. (Read our full Disclosure Policy)

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