Sintra is one of those destinations which seems too magical to believe it’s real. It’s a charming town, full of fairytale castles, historic battlements and a rich tapestry of cutesy stores and gourmet cafes.
Having just returned from my trip to Lisbon, I wanted to put pen to paper right away to share all the things I learned when travelling to Portugal for the first time! Lisbon is just as wonderful as you hear it is, the streets are as vibrant as the personalities, and it’s a tremendously laid back and yet bustling city all at the same time. I was so busy leading up to this trip, so I felt more unprepared than usual and as such made a few blunders which I felt like needed to be shared for other, just as unknowing travellers, to learn from.
The Gion district is one of Kyoto’s oldest neighbourhoods. The streets seem to surge with history but what makes this area so unique is because it is one of the last remaining places where you can see real Geishas in Japan. Up and down these streets you can keep your eyes open and see if you can catch a glimpse of a Geisha on her way to a tea houses where exclusive guests enjoy an evening of traditional Japanese entertainment.
La Sagrada Familia is THE MOST important sight to see when visiting Barcelona. Its history, design and the feeling you get upon stepping inside in unparalleled. The church feels like a summation of what Barcelona is all about and understanding it before visiting or while you tour it is so essential to better enjoying this fantastic monument.
Nowhere in Japan is more wild, bright and colourful as Harajuku. This neighbourhood is filled to bursting with amazing places to see! Below is my list of the best places get those iconics shots of Kawaii Tokyo! All the stops are located at the bottom in a handy dandy google map for you to follow and are in an easy to follow directional order.
Hakone is one of the most beautiful day trips you can take from Tokyo. It’s only a short 2-hour train ride away and transports you from the out of the metal metropolis of the city, into the lush green landscape of the Japanese countryside. Hakone is famous for their hot spring onsens, stunning view of Mount Fuji across Lake Ashinoko and unparalleled natural scenery.
Graffiti in Barcelona will always be part of the city. The city became a center of fashion, design, art and creativity after the Olympics in 1992. The new art expression became popular in Barcelona. As a consequence, many Graffiti artists visited the city just to paint a part of the city.
Barcelona is one of the most exciting cities to visit in Europe. But being one of the top tourist hotspots means there are plenty of activities which are overhyped and not worth your valuable travel time. From tourist trap restaurants to pickpockets along busy beaches, here are some things to avoid on your next trip to Barcelona.
In a city filled with incredible architectural masterpieces from Gaudi, there is another architect who often gets forgotten. And yet he is perhaps just as influential in terms of founding the Catalan art form of 'modernism'. His name is Lluís Domènech i Montaner and one of his best designs is the Palau de la Música Catalana. The Catalan style of architecture called 'modernism' was developed to support a new Catalan identity.
Anyone who hears the word "Budapest" will most likely immediately think of their iconic Parliament Building. The Hungarian Parliament Building is one of the most recognisable images of Hungary and a symbol of the country's talented artists who helped achieve this vision of architectural magnificence. Standing on the banks of the Danube, it flanks the city and greets visitors floating down the river with its bright white columns and staggering silhouette.
Exploring Harajuku is more than just walking down the famed Takeshita Dori Street. There are so many side alleys and hidden shops you need to explore to get a real sense of what Harajuku is all about and not just the touristy side of things. I’ve tried to make this list an easy to follow walking path from the station so you don’t have to backtrack too much!
Japan has the reputation of being unique, quirky and sometimes even flat out weird. But not weird in a bad, but weird in a good way. These unique experiences which are synonymous with Tokyo are the reason some people make the trip out there. While I would always advise you pair your adventures in Japan with some traditional experiences as well, I do completely understand those who want to find all the most bizarre activities this country has to offer. Here are my favourite weird and wonderful places and adventures to can find in Tokyo!
Known as the Venice of the North, Bruges is a medieval paradise replete with sweeping canals, quaint cobblestones alleyways, unique Gothic architecture and an utterly enchanting atmosphere. Bruges is truly one of my favourite cities to visit. It feels like you could walk endless along the streets and continuously find new discoveries. It’s a fairy-tale like village and I think far too many people just breeze through it on a day-trip from Brussels. I think to truly experience the city at it’s best you need to spend the night and dedicate a good 48 hours to explore every nook and cranny of the city.
As much as we might feel young at heart forever, there are apparent differences between travelling in your 20s and travelling in your 30s. While many of these changes aren't necessarily bad ones, if anything I've met travellers in the 60s who endlessly inspired and excite me, everyone grows old. And how your travelling experiences change are interesting to document and think about as you grow. I love learning from other travellers, especially those who are older than me. When I turned 30, it was a like a switch got flicked. Things took me longer, I was more tired and suddenly didn't feel like I could do everything. Other travellers who went through a similar change were super helpful to me in setting clear new goals and changing my expectations. So I wanted to document this for myself here so others can learn from me and my experiences with travel as I got older.
Travelling to Japan as a first timer is a daunting experience. Going to a city where they don't use the Roman alphabet, let alone speak the language, is just one more hurdle which can make those first few hours in the city all that more confusing and intimidating. But trust me, Japan is one of the most incredible cities in the world and the kind people you'll find there are always more than happy to help you out with any pickle you might find yourself in. That being said, after many "first times" in Japan, I've plotted my top tips to ensure your first few hours there go as smoothly as possible, and you've set yourself up for success for the rest of your trip to Japan!
Visiting one of Budapest's thermal baths is a right of passage for anyone's first time in this historic city. Budapest's thermal baths are as crucial to the culture and the city as anything else you'll see and do. Although the concept might seem strange to foreigners, once you get over the first time jitters, you're bound to find the experience something you'll want to do over and over again.