An upside-down year: 2015 in review

2015 was almost the polar opposite of 2014. It’s funny how life chucks stuff at you and you have to shift your whole way of living to cope.

Long story short, 2015 has been a pretty crap year. But let’s start at the beginning.

2015 in review: The upside-down year

A year ago, when I wrote this post, we were settling in Vancouver for what we thought would be the next year. We were caught up in the joy of travel, of living in a foreign country, of seeing new places.

A mere month and a bit later, we were back in New Zealand. Canada just didn’t work out for us (we’ve explained why in this post).

Sun dogs on Blackcomb

Although we spent an amazing summer chilling out in New Zealand, those were uncertain times. With work, with travel, with family. We had a ticket back to Canada but we decided to stay in New Zealand.

We are so glad we did.

Many of you read our post about our wedding that we planned in a week, and the heartbreaking reason behind it. Six months on (has it really been six months?), life has returned to ‘normal’ but with one great big hole.


So it’s pretty obvious that travel has taken a back seat for us this year, with family and jobs being the priority.

Nevertheless, we have managed to keep this blog going, and growing! We are so proud and happy of the progress the blog has made even though it has had a lot of neglect this year. We’d go a couple of weeks without doing anything – no blog posts, no social media – and we’d come back to find our traffic pretty much the same, with new fans and followers. That was enough to convince us to keep it going – so thanks to all you readers!

We’ve worked with a number of amazing companies in both New Zealand and Canada, and have some exciting partnerships coming up soon. It really has been a year of growth for The Global Couple!

Travel highlights of 2015

Having our first white Christmas and doing the best skiing of our lives so far in Whistler, BC.

Diving at New Zealand’s best dive site, the Poor Knights Islands.

poor knights diving

Renting a campervan with friends and doing a road trip to the Hawke’s Bay region of New Zealand, complete with hilarity and too many wine tastings.

Skiing in the South Island of New Zealand.

Doing the most epic scenic flight from Wanaka to Milford Sound and a boat trip at Milford Sound – one of the best things we have ever done!


Petra’s work trip around the Pacific Islands – Hawaii, Marshall Islands and Kiribati.


Most popular blog posts of 2015

We’ve received great feedback to our popular 36 hours in… series. We love short and sweet city guides and apparently you, our readers, do too! Here’s our top five blog posts (by page views) for 2015.

36 hours in Vancouver

36 hours in New York City on the cheap!

Cheap travel in New Zealand? Yes, it’s possible!

36 hours in Portland and Seattle

36 hours in Hong Kong

Most popular Instagram photos of 2015

We’ve focused our social media efforts on Instagram this year. We love the simplicity of the platform and it encourages us to really improve our photography skills. Our following has gently risen, and we are aiming to get to 2000 followers by the end of 2015. Help us out if you like our feed!

Getting amongst these snowy peaks next week – can’t wait! #airnzshareme #nzmustdo

A photo posted by Petra + Shaun (@theglobalcouple) on

Wonderful late afternoon light at Milford Sound. Love this place! #nzmustdo A photo posted by Petra + Shaun (@theglobalcouple) on

Plans for 2016

We’re hoping to head overseas somewhere for a holiday, but due to our full-time jobs, our main focus will be on New Zealand travel. We just love exploring our own country, and who can blame us! We’re pretty lucky to call New Zealand home. This summer we’re intending on doing lots of camping, hiking, and general exploring.

Our blog content will be mainly focused on New Zealand travel (we want The Global Couple to be a resource for travellers coming to NZ!), with snippets from around the world. We love having guest posts on our site to bring in a bit of variety (if you want to submit an idea for a guest post, send us an email! (

If you have ideas for things that we could do, see, and post about (in New Zealand) – let us know! We’re always up for trying new things and we want to know what you, our audience, wants to read. More ‘36 hours in‘ posts? More road trip itineraries? Let us know!

te mata peak

Come along for the ride!

We want to thank you for being such supportive readers. This blog would be nothing without you! We are constantly heartened by emails and comments we get from you guys thanking us for what we do on this site – whether it’s travel tips for various places we’ve visited or opening up with honest truths. We love you!

Come along with us for the ride that will be 2016 – we can’t wait to put 2015 behind us and head into a brighter, more promising year ahead.

See you on the other side!

Petra & Shaun

Whitewater rafting in New Zealand

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