Wanderlust Wednesday is a weekly series where travel bloggers share their best and favourite moment of travel. Each week a blogger will detail the importance of their best moment, and how that moment affected them.
This series is here to share with you the importance of the little moments, the benefits of travel, and the experiences that you may want to try. Enjoy!
This week’s featured blogger is Tracey from Exploration Addict on her experience of the Dover Cliffs and reconnecting with nature.
For years I’ve wanted to go to Europe but I kept telling myself to wait because it was too expensive and I couldn’t afford it yet. The exchange rate still wasn’t great when I went for the first time, but without even realizing it I had managed to save up enough flier mile points since college to get a round trip to London! This was serendipitous because I had been thinking about traveling for my 30th birthday and now I had a way to be able to afford it. I greatly enjoyed my time in London, but the day trip out to Dover sticks out as a strong and happy memory. We hopped the train from London first thing in the morning, and planned to visit Dover Castle and the White Cliffs while there. After hiking our way up to the castle we discovered how expensive it was to get in, so we just opted for taking a few photos of it from afar as we wandered around the edge of the grounds. From there we hiked our way towards the entrance of the White Cliffs Park.
Things started out normal enough as we walked along, but not too long into our walk we ran out of sidewalk. It wasn’t that there was just no sidewalk there was barely enough space between the asphalt of the 2 lane road and the bushes for us to walk on. As to not get run over we would try and find a spot where we could step aside whenever we heard or saw a car coming. It didn’t help that a bunch of sports cars would occasionally speed by in either direction. We’d barely have enough time to get out of their way even if we heard them before we saw them. But aside from the occasional car forcing us to take refuge in the bushes it was an entertaining walk. It was funny how we both got excited when we realized that we were walking past a flock of sheep. For some reason sheep and Europe go together in my mind. They’re cute animals and the scenery of where we were was beautiful! This brought together the whole ‘English Countryside’ feel for us.
Upon reaching the entrance to the White Cliffs park area the scenery really opened up as there weren’t as many trees. We were happy to find that there was no entrance fee and we were thankful to be able to refill our water bottles at the visitor’s center before wandering out on the trail lining the cliffs. There weren’t many people there so we’d only run into other visitors, mostly locals, at the sections of the path that narrowed and we would exchange a friendly hello as we did. Halfway through we found a small wooden bench in a section, just off the edge and with a beautiful view, so thought it’d be a great spot for a break and for us to eat our packed lunches. The strong cool winds, the beautiful scenery surrounding us, and the sound of the ocean made for an incredible day. Unfortunately as we trekked along it started to drizzle, but thankful it never got bad because both of us had forgotten our umbrellas. But as we walked along we did see some dark gray clouds that looked to be moving in our direction, so to be safe we turned to start making our way back.
That day in Dover reminded me how much I love nature. I live in New York so we have Central Park and other green spaces, but it’s not the same as being out and engulfed in nature. I hadn’t realized how long it had been since I just went hiking or exploring outdoors. For several years before this trip I had been traveling with friends who were not particularly fond of spending time outdoors and in nature, so we tended to stay in or near cities. I had a lot of fun traveling with them but having my love of nature and the outdoors renewed I want to find more travel and activities that involve hiking and getting out of the city. Even if it’s just a day or weekend away I look forward to new adventures!