Travel - all my travel blog posts rounded up in one place
My blogs on travel are all in one place on this page. A must go destination for information on UK staycations, good value holidays and destinations and general travel tips.
All my blog posts on the best in the world of travel at the moment.
On a typically cold wet and rainy English Spring day, my mother and I visited Blenheim Palace in Woodstock, Oxfordshire - a place neither of us had had a proper trip to since I was a small child. (I did go to its gardens this Christmas on yet another wet occasion to see them lit up for the festive season - it was stunning, I highly recommend it). The palace itself is famous for so many things - Winston Churchill being just one of them. It is an absolute beauty of a building and set amongst some gorgeous English countryside.
One's honeymoon is a crazy excuse to indulge your biggest travel dreams - be they heavily based on ludicrous levels of luxury or an action packed adventure. I've listed 10 destinations that I think tick lots of different boxes for lots of different types of people! Enjoy and salivate in equal measure.
Last weekend, I caught up with two girlfriends I met whilst living in Germany. We had previously settled on having two nights in London, staying in the Notting Hill area. Having researched properties to rent for a couple of nights through AirBnB.com and Homeaway.co.uk, we had found a place that was unintentionally opposite the Blue Door in the film Notting Hill for a very good price. Based on Westbourne Park Road, it was a great location. Not only because it was easy for all of us from our various starting points, but it was literally just off Portobello Road with all its buzz.
Given what happened in London this week, I felt like I couldn't publish my usual blogs without mentioning the terror attack on Westminster on Wednesday. With that in mind, I thought I'd list the things I love about London.
This week, I was lucky enough to go to Soho Farmhouse with one of my oldest friends Miss. T. Luckier still, we were blessed with sunny weather and warm temperatures that made this country outpost of the Soho House chain even more idyllic than it already is. Set within rolling hills near Chipping Norton, on the outskirts of the village of Great Tew, Soho Farmhouse is about an hour and a half from London and a completely decadent slice of heaven.
At the weekend, I was lucky enough to visit a friend of mine who is living for a short while in the beautiful foot hills of the Midi Pyrenees near the town of Saint Girons. Having been before, it was the perfect destination for me and my burgeoning bump as the littlest things take all the energy from me at the moment. By visiting somewhere I knew well, and with a short flight, any crazy pregnancy worries were allayed, and I found myself flying from Heathrow to Toulouse on a Friday night.
I have just returned from an idyllic weekend away in Somerset as a treat to my husband and I for Valentine's Day as well as the last opportunity we had to go on a baby moon, or rather a last ditch attempt to remember that we love each other before a, hopefully healthy and happy, baby makes us question our sanity through many a sleepless night for the next 20 years. I had suggested it to the husband, and unlike him who would happily spend a weekend watching rugby on the sofa in our home, he was keen for the idea and suggested going to Somerset to see some friends and also visit the town of Wells so he could visit some of the set of Hot Fuzz. This last bit was completely lost on me but I agreed to it thinking I had one in the back pocket for when I want to visit New York and the sets of Sex and The City.
Back in the day, the point of a pub was simply to be a destination to have a few drinks and perhaps chew the cud with a friend. These days, pubs' food offering is equally, if not more, of a draw than what ales it has on offer. Whilst, as a food lover, I'm all for this, I do have a number of gripes with the nu wave of gastro pubs that charge through the nose, not because their food is exemplary, but because their walls are the current in vogue colour of grey from Farrow and Ball. Recently, I have visited a number of pubs that have happily not fallen into this category and instead, I have dined out exceedingly well at pubs that are sadly not walking distance from my home. That being said, they were definitely worth the drive.
Whilst I lived in Germany with my husband for two years, I learnt a great many things. I can now drink a whole stein of beer and hold my own, I can make a mean schnitzel, I can drive fast without the fear of god running through me, and I also learnt to love a spa. Interestingly, for a woman, I always found spas a bit 'and what next?'. I think I found it hard to realise that the whole point of going was not activity, but just indulging in doing absolutely nothing. Apologies if I'm telling you how to skin a cat here, but the point of spas genuinely passed me by up until I moved to the North Rhine Westphalia area.
Whenever I plan a trip, a great deal of my research is based around food: what to eat and where to eat it. In fact, my loved ones would probably argue that whenever I plan my day, a very similar process transpires. But I thought, for this week’s blog post, I would recommend five city breaks and the classic dish to try once there. And, because it’s January and we’re all still waiting for a much longed for pay cheque after Christmas, I have suggested a London restaurant that would be a suitable short term replacement for a weekend away.
The English capital is a fantastic city to visit at any time of year, but at Christmas there are even more wonderful things to do in London. I've listed my top tips
Despite coach loads of tourists being dropped off on the hour, every hour, there is simply no denying that Bibury, situated in the Cotswolds, is absolutely beautiful. Everywhere you look is another picture perfect postcard shot waiting to be taken. Plus it is one of those rare English places that actually gets better in the Winter. As the days get shorter, the evenings longer and the outside air gets colder, the want to hibernate inside one of its many cute cottages or typical countryside pubs, becomes more and more legitimate. My husband and I visited last weekend having gatecrashed a romantic weekend away that my brother had planned for his wife.
There are many places in Europe that are sadly so fantastic that they are either overrun with tourists or are so expensive that they are no longer a viable option unless you travel at 06.20 on a Tuesday from Southend Airport and return at 0100 the following day. Below are my alternative options for well known destinations that may have fallen prey to this.
Last week, I celebrated my birthday and I was spoilt rotten, as usual, by my wonderful husband and family. True to my, and my family's taste, we saw the day in and out through the means of over eating and drinking at fantastic restaurants. It got me to thinking about other restaurants that I have been to in the UK that are great 'treat' restaurants - the ones that you go to for special occasions only. I have listed a handful of my ideas that I strongly recommend you add to your list of places to eat, but I'd love to hear more - just contact me here.
A couple of weekends ago, one of my oldest friends, Miss T, and I finally ticked off Lisbon from our hit list. We had very high expectations of the city and luckily the Portuguese capital far exceeded them. I absolutely loved every second of our stay there and thought that the city made a perfect weekend away given its ease of access (just a short direct flight from Heathrow), plethora of excellent restaurants and swathes of culture. We stayed at the LX hotel in the Bairro Alto district, which I would happily stay at again. It was chic, had attentive service and its location was walking distance to 99% of the places Miss T and I wanted to go to. Below I've listed some of my must dos for the city, but really you could just sit at coffee shop all day and watch the world go by in this buzzy capital.
Last week, I submitted five pictures to the Royal Horticultural Society’s annual photographic competition. The snaps I entered are below and I have discussed them, where they were taken and why I submitted them. I’d love to know what my readers think – and see any floral or botanic pictures they have taken! Just contact me below!
About two years ago now, something happened to the manner in how my husband and I booked holidays. We bought a dog. Any dog owner knows that a dog is not just a dog. He or she is a member of your family and leaving them for extended periods of time beyond four hours can actually be fairly upsetting and stressful. Ideally you would take them with you wherever you go. Whilst my mongrel hasn't, in the main, always stopped me from going further afield (please see my previous two blog posts at least!), if I can come up with a feasible holiday destination that can include the mutt, I will.
A couple of weeks ago, I posted about a long weekend in Verona I had at the beginning of August. Subsequent to that, I jumped in a hire car with my husband and my sister and brother in law to the most ludicrously beautiful town I have ever had the luck to see: Malcesine.
Whеn іt comes tо рорulаr tоurіѕt destinations, Auѕtrаlіа іѕ rіght up there wіth the big bоуѕ. Yоu соuld ѕау thаt there іѕ ѕоmеthіng fоr everyone іn Auѕtrаlіа.There is so much to see and dо on the world’s biggest island - frоm thе сrаggу оutbасk to thе Great Bаrrіеr Reef with its renowned diving. Its cities are also a major draw along with vast stretches of gоldеn beaches.
This summer, I have not written on my blog for so many reasons. Moving country has been one of them, but various back to back trips and holidays have been other more pleasurable ones! This week, I am writing about one of my first trips of the summer where my family and I debunked to Verona for my mother's birthday. Below are my top ten tips for where to stay, what to do and where to eat for a weekend to this stunner of an Italian city.
Back in the depths of winter, I wrote a blog about how to tackle hand luggage limitations before going away. This week, I tackle the same issue, but with a summer holiday in mind. In particular, one that takes in a city weekend break in Verona followed by a week in Lake Garda, as that happens to be my own summer holiday this year.
I am super excited to announce that a couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be selected for the Liebster Award, which seeks to honour new bloggers by other bloggers. I had the privilege of being nominated by the lovely Anna from Postcards from the World. To take part in the award, she asked me to answer the below questions, and then go on to ask my own 11 questions to a handful of other bloggers that I would like to nominate myself.
So last week on my blog, I left my road trip story in Girona. My husband and I had been driving for a day and a half, and had just over the same again to do. When we woke for our Spanish breakfast, we talked over our route that day and decided to have lunch just outside Lyon, having driven through the Pyrenees and just North of the south coast of France. From lunch, we would head to Colmar - a town that I have wanted to visit for a long time now.
Last week, I left my latest blog at a juncture in a European road trip I was taking with my husband. I had written up to the point where we had discovered Jamon croquettes in the Moorish city of Cordoba at dinner. This week, I will discuss our journey up to the point where we discovered Jamon Croquettes in Girona.
Just over a week ago, the husband and I embarked on a mini adventure to collect a car that he had been left by his late grandfather. My grandfather in law lived in Portugal, near Faro. We live in Paderborn, Germany. Our plan was to fly down on a Friday afternoon, service and sort out any legalities with the car and start driving back on Tuesday morning with overnight stops in Valencia and Lyon.
My latest trip saw me return to an old favourite with a handful of my circle of trust. At the end of April, I flew to Grantley Adams airport to have two idyllic weeks in Barbados. Regular readers of my blog will have seen me mention my love of this beautiful Caribbean island before. This visit did nothing to dispel my affection for the isle's beaches, people or rum.
I have just returned from two idyllic weeks on the beautiful island of Barbados. I am writing up my trip there as you read, but in the interim I thought I would share with you all a recipe for Bajan Fish Cakes. No trip to the island is complete without trying them at least once.
Despite any ambitions or aspirations to look like Margot Robbie, whenever I go on a beach holiday, I unfortunately put a lot more work into finding a new bikini than working on my bikini body. Over the years, however, I have become much more efficient on where to find my latest swimsuits and which brands to target. Here are my five go to brands.
Last weekend, I spent an idyllic couple of days with one of my oldest friends, Miss T, in the German city of Munich.