15 Memories from 2015

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15 Memories from 2015

This past year has brought us through 7 countries, has introduced us to many new friends, and has shown us countless adventures. 

Last year, we shared lessons we learned in 2014, and this year we’re sharing some of our favorite memories from the past 365 days.

It has been a year of firsts, of goodbyes, and welcomes. And it was nearly impossible to choose just 15 memories, but here are a few that stood out amongst the rest…

1. Kayaking at night past trees alit with fireflies was one of the highlights of our trip to the Philippines.

Photo credit: Mr. J. Cabrera (provided by Kayakasia)Photo credit: Mr. J. Cabrera (provided by Kayakasia)

2. Watching the famous Japanese Snow Monkeys bathe in natural hot springs 

Snow Monkey Japan

3. Taking a (quick) dip in this ice cold natural swimming pool on Jeju Island

Natural Swimming Pool Jeju South Korea

4. Wandering through the stunning green tea fields in Boseong 

Green Tea Fields Boseong South Korea

5. Spending countless afternoons in our secret mountain spot near our apartment in Korea. Mandatory checklist: hammock, music and wine!

Eno Hammock South Korea

6. Hiking to the top of an active volcano in Bali and watching the sun rise over the horizon.

Mount Batur Sunrise Bali

7. Saying goodbye to South Korea — a place that we had come to call home, and a group of friends that has become family.

Friends Korean Photo Booth

8. Drinking craft beer, eating cheese, camping, and spending quality time with friends and family back at home in Minnesota.

Minnesota Craft Beer Cheese Friends

9. Witnessing one of Ben’s sisters say “I do” and the other say “Yes!”

Photo credit (left): Hannah Schmitt PhotographyPhoto credit (left): Hannah Schmitt Photography

10. Swimming through bioluminescent plankton that turned the ocean water into a sea of stars was magical.

The best part about visiting the famous Maya Bay was that we were able to stay overnight and have it all to ourselves without any other tourists fighting for the same picture.

Phi Phi Maya Bay Sleep Aboard

11. Exploring northern Thailand on motorbike — to waterfalls, hot springs, and caves, oh my!

Pai Thailand Motorbike

12. Volunteering on a remote Thai farm

We helped build a mud house, plant an organic garden, made hibiscus jam, and chopped bamboo with machetes. Yeah, we’re badasses. 

Bamboo Machete WOOF Workaway Pai

13. Releasing wish lanterns into the sky during the Yi Peng festival.

Yi Peng Wish Lantern Chiang Mai Thailand

14. We took cooking classes in 4 countries this year — Japan, Korea, Indonesia, and Thailand. Gotta practice our skills sometime soon!

Cooking Class Bali
Cooking Class Thailand

15. Spending the night in a remote H’mong village in Laos during the H’mong New Year. It was one of the most eye-opening experiences in all of our travels. Ever.

H'mong Village Homestay Laos

2015 was, in short, incredible. We learned, we laughed, we climbed mountains, ate new foods. We fell more in love with the world, with each other, and with ourselves. 

2016 has a lot to live up to, but we’ve got some pretty big plans for this year. To kick it off, we’ll be counting down to midnight on a cruise of Vietnam’s famous Halong Bay (umm, soooo excited!!!). And we’ve got some pretty fun things in store after that (stay tuned)!

I think just maybe, this new year has a chance of being just as exciting and life-changing as the past 365 days. Bring it on, 2016. We’re ready for ya!

Wanna see how 2015 compares to our last few years?


Comments (2) on “15 Memories from 2015

  1. Jasmin says:

    I recently found your blog and I love it! Look forward to reading more about your adventures in 2016. My husband and I will be traveling for a few months this year and it was a blessing to find your blog. You have so many great resources and have the same style of travel as we do. Thanks for all of the information you provide.

    Here is to an AMAZING 2016!!

    • ktdieder@gmail.com says:

      Thanks so much for the kind words, Jasmin 🙂 Sounds like you have an exciting 2016 planned! Where are your travels taking you?

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