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chris stevens travel blogger backpacker banter photographer

2014: 12 Months Of Travel In 12 Pictures

2014 was another crazy year of travelling for me – so incase you missed any of it here’s the last 12 months of my adventures in 12 pictures…

2014 is nearly over and to say it’s been a pretty turbulent and unpredictable year for me is a pretty big understatement! I’ve covered 10 countries across 4 continents.


I’ve surfed and I’ve been on safari. 

I got a job back in the UK, then I quit it and headed out on the road again. 

One long term relationship ended, one new relationship started.

I started it in snow in Switzerland and I’m ending in the warmth of Indonesia.

…yup another crazy year in the life of me!


So here’s my photo summary of 2014 – 12 months in 12 pictures – I’m hoping that 2015 is a little bit less chaotic! It’s packed full of links too so if you missed out on some of my posts click on them to read more!

(you can also still check out my 2013 summary here)


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Sunset Beers In Ecuador

January – Switzerland and Ecuador

I started the year snowboarding the Swiss Alps before bouncing back to somewhere I feel more at home, the sunny beaches of Ecuador with a surfboard tucked under my arm. Reunited with two of my favourite partners in crime – Gijs and Vago – it was a month filled with topping up my tan in Montanita, enjoying mojitos on the beach and catching as many waves as we could.


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Surf Trips With My Buddy Vago

February – Ecuador

After settling back in the latino lifestyle of South America it was another month in my beach front office surf coaching and generally living the dream. The end of the month spelled the end of my long term relationship though. It sucked but the blow was certainly softened by being surrounded by good friends, good weather and good surf!


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One Broken And Dislocated Toe!

March – Ecuador

Another month of living the dream in Ecuador, finally enjoying my newly found single freedom and trying to figure out a new plan for the rest of the year. It was a pretty simply month of waves, babes and bad decisions…until I broke an dislocated my toe playing beach football, which meant cancelling a freediving trip to the Galapagos Islands and not being able to surf for a loooong time!


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Chilly Surfing In Devon!

April – Ecuador, Peru, UK

Having finished off my visa in Ecuador I said farewell to my Montanita Family and headed south across the border in Peru. I spent a couple weeks surfing in Mancora and Lobitos getting back into the waves after my foot healed before heading down to Lima to finish off my time in South America. From here I was meant to head back to Switzerland for a month, however there was no way in hell I was setting foot back in that country again (I’ve vowed to avoid any land locked countries from now on!) so for lack of a better plan I headed back to the UK, regroup and sort a new plan


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Teaming Up With Jack Wills And STA UK

May – UK, Germany

With a job in Portugal surf coaching secured for the summer I enjoyed a few weeks catching up with friends and family. Not being a huge fan of my homeland though I booked a random flight to Germany for a week to catch up with one of my travel buddies and explore somewhere new! I was also stoked to team up with STA Travel and Jack Wills to give a travel talk in London alongside fellow blogger Vicky Philpott which was heaps of fun!


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My Surf Camp Home In Sagres (At Least For A Couple Weeks!)

June – UK, Portugal….and then the UK again!

This is where the year really went AWOL! I headed off to Sagres for a summer of surf coaching, partied hard for my birthday and caught up with a whole heap of travel friends from my time in Morocco and Thailand and then scored a job as the head of sales and marketing for a surf travel company…in the UK! So after just over 3 weeks in Portugal I found myself back in the UK again!

In the middle of the month I also launched my newest business venture – online travel agency Epic Gap Year – the result of nearly a year of hard work.


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Exploring Iceland

July – UK, Iceland

As I settled into my role at Ticket To Ride and with a solid income stream again I headed off to tick Iceland off my bucket list, where diving between the continental plates and exploring glaciers was in order alongside Tara. It was an amazing long weekend, if rather costly.

3 weeks into my new job I realised office life in the UK wasn’t for me…so I promptly handed in my notice and started booking flights for a return to Asia!


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Teaming Up With Canon To Review The Powershot G7X

August – UK

Being nice and abiding by my contractual obligations I worked out the notice on my contract. To my surprise they also decided to offer me the opportunity to head out and promote one of their surf adventures in South Africa! Needless to say I jumped at the chance to check out a new country and of course get back to surfing in the sunshine!


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On Safari In Kruger National Park

September – UK, South Africa

Probably one of my favourite months of the year I flew in J’Burg for a few days of safari in Kruger and spent the rest of the month surfing along the beautiful South African coastline from Cape Town up to J’Bay. It was packed full of amazing waves, mini adventures and fellow surfers – that’s how travel should be!


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Scuba Diving In The Similan Islands, Thailand

October – South Africa, UK, Thailand

After finishing off my time in South Africa and scoring some epic waves at J’Bay I headed back to the UK for a couple of days, picked up Tara and we headed out to Thailand to begin a new adventure together. First stop was the amazing Koh Tao alongside the ever amusing Stephen from A Backpackers Tale, followed by 2 weeks of scuba diving in the Similan Islands. I was back on the road again…


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Swimming With Whalesharks in Oslob

November – Thailand, The Philippines

After a final few days in Bangkok it was time to tick another country off the bucket list – The Philippines! It didn’t disappoint either and I spent the month snorkelling with whalesharks, freediving in Cebu and surfing in Siargao. Unfortunately my trip to Palawan was cancelled due to some issues with the weather but it’s safe to say the Philippines is already one of my favourite spots in Asia!


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Freediving With Manta Rays In Nusa Lembongan

December – The Philippines, Indonesia

Having rearranged the final week of my Philippines trip due to the weather me and Tara jumped on a flight to our final country of the year to finish off 2014 in Indonesia. We chilled with monkeys in Ubud, went diving at the Liberty Shipwreck in Tulamben and even surf tripped over to Java where we snorkelled with manta rays! An epic end to a rather mental year of plans, changes and travel!


Phew what a mental year of bouncing around! I’ll be posting another summary of 2014 included my yearly budgeting round up and stats next week to give you an idea of how much mileage I covered, the flights I took and of course how much 2014 cost me – so keep an eye out for that one!

In the meantime I’d like to wish you all a happy new year and I hope you’re all getting stoked for 2015, any of you heading out to travel some of the world?


What was your travel highlight of 2014?

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