Professional photographer and wanderer @JustJac, traveled over 100,000 miles this year to 26 different cities. She spent most of her year packing a suitcase and chasing light around the world, and the resulting imagery is a revelatory documentation of how much romance, history, art and inspiration there is to be found on this earth. We picked our favorite shots from parts unknown – like Bydgoszcz, Poland and Stockholm, Sweden – while Jac offers her best memories from a year on the road.
Favorite destination overall: To choose only one is impossible, but if I had to pick a place I couldn’t wait to go back to it would be the Amalfi coast in Italy. I often dream of this place.
Best meal: Stumbled upon the worlds best filet mignon at The Bunker in Queenstown, New Zealand. Honorable mentions- Bill’s for breakfast in Sydney, and Miss Voon in Stockholm for dinner and Sake.
Best cup of coffee: Poland has teeny tiny espresso vending machines throughout the small town of Bydgoszcz . Something about the convenience of a super heavy shot of Lavazza without the over enthusiastic barista spelling my name wrong was just, wonderful.
Favorite zen moment: having an outdoor bath in New Zealand!
Most surprising or unexpected moment: Every moment spent in Bulgaria. Faces and places I will never forget.
Best view: Drive south from anywhere in Italy if you ever get a chance. The windy road beyond Pompei, in and out of tunnels, emerging onto the Amalfi Coast took my breathe away.
Most romantic: My man proposed to me in Italy this spring. It doesn’t matter where or how just that, it was simple and perfect.
Favorite people: Everyone who I have met throughout my travels that has taught me a language and given me direction in life.
Favorite local tradition: Baba Marta Day, in Bulgaria, marks the turn of spring. The tradition is to give and collect small adornments made of white and red yarn, typically a bracelet. While the white is a symbol of purity, and red a symbol of life and passion, it is meant to remind people of the constant cycle of life and death, the balance of good and evil, happiness and sorrow. As spring progresses and trees blossom you are meant to remove and tie your adornment to a tree and make a wish. This was very special to me and I will carry it on forever.
Best music: All the live action in Naples is extremely sexy.
Best shopping: Scandinavia most definitely has the best to offer between high and low end shopping. Acne and Weekday are some of my favorites. I can’t help but mention Australia where I’ve found some of the most unique small designers in both Sydney and Melbourne.
Best street style: Stockholm, Sweden, you’re so cool.
Best architecture/design: Melbourne has a wonderful juxtaposition of old and new architecture. The parks are big and lovely and even the highways offer something pretty to look at.
Favorite adventure: Getting away from any city is always rewarding. I spent 3 day’s outside of Stockholm during the month I stayed in Sweden this summer. My lover and I took a 2 hour ferry to a small island called Svartsö in the Archipelago where we camped out by the water. I should say “glamped”…we were very comfortable with our cast iron wood fire and breakfast served in a basket each morning. Any island in the Archipelago is worth exploring year round but especially in summer when the sun barely ever sets.
Best nature/eco vibes: Tasmania, no place like it on earth!