Written by Michael

4min read

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Ticking of these 5 best things to do in Kotor will make sure that you get the most out of your stay to the most beautiful town in Montenegro.

Kotor in my opinion is the gem of Montenegro. The old town is situated on the southern tip of a stunning bay that is surrounded by towering mountains.

The towns unique history, stunning scenery, and nearby attractions will keep your jaw on the floor for at least a couple of days.


Kotor Old Town

The old town of Kotor is one of the most interesting old towns I’ve explored.

Down every street you’ll find another smaller side street with something unique to explore. I found the cutest little shops, hidden relaxing areas, as well a cool open air cinema!

The streets are very hap-hazard and random. This was deliberately done by the town planners to confuse potential invading forces!


Take a hike to Kotor Fortress.

Overlooking the old town are the fortifications of Kotor. The fortifications protected the medieval town hundreds of years ago and are still in relatively good condition.

To get to the fort you can take the usual route up the mountains at the back of the old town and pay a fair bit fo money, or you can take the secret route.

My hosel friend and I took the secret route and its a lot quieter, a lot more authentic, and a lot cooler.

The route will take you out of the old town and crisscross up the mountain. On your way up you’ll pass really quirky sites.

An old man who doesn’t speak English will offer you refreshments from his farm house, you’ll pass plenty of goats, and can explore the cutest abandoned church.

The back entrance to the fort is then up a wooden ladder through a back window.

Then you are free to explore the awesome views!


Our Lady of the Rocks

About an hours walk north of Kotor is the cute little town of Perast. Just off the shore of Perast you will find two little islands.

These islands make up what is known as ‘Our Lady of the Rocks’. This little island was once literally a bunch of rocks and has been build on over the years.

In the 1400’s an image of the Virgin Mary was seen on the site and a small Orthodox church was built on the site.

Over the years the Church has changed and now there is a Catholic church that you are free to visit and explore with a ferry service from Perast.


Lovcen National Park

Lovcen National Park
Lovcen National Park Kotor

Towering over the south of Kotor is Lovcen National Park. The National Park contains two large mountains that have a myriad of hikes for you to complete.

A hike to the top of Mount Lovcen to visit Njegos Mausoleum is likely to be the highlight of your time in Kotor. The imposing Mausoleum overlooks the bay of Kotor.

The Mausoleum itself is the highest in the world and is flanked by two towering figures guarding it.

A short walk on from the mausoleum is a circular view pint offering the best panoramic views in Montenegro.


Kotor Old Town Saturday Market

If you’re lucky enough to be in Kotor on a Saturday then I highly recommend a trip to the Saturday Market. Sellers from all over the region converge upon the old Town of Kotor and sell a mesmerising array of goods.

You’ll find food produce ranging from the finest home made olive oil to the tastiest vegetables in Montenegro.

You’ll also find plenty of little handmade trinkets that you’ll be able to take home with you. If you keep them for yourself or use them as gifts for friends and family is up to you!

 

Written by Michael

4min read

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drinks in bangkok
The best bars in Bangkok

The Bangkok nightlife is an integral part of any trip to Thailand. As well as this the country is one of the top tourist destinations in the world and with good reason. Activities like fishing trips, scenic scuba dives, world-class massages and the plethora of Thai cuisine ensures the Southeast Asian nation is a paradise for visitors.

Of course, yet another reason to visit Thailand is its Bangkok nightlife. In Bangkok alone, there are a number of different bars in Bangkok that visitors can experience. Below are just some of the best establishments.

Maggie Choo’s

Maggie Choo's bar
Maggie Choo’s Bar

Occupying the basement level at Novotel Fenix Silom Bangkok, the Bangkok Post describes this bar as having a chic-mystique ambience. That’s because the bar is decorated with hanging paper umbrellas, tasselled lampshades, and faded photos that give off a retro Chinese cabaret vibe.

It even has its own noodle shop, as well as roasted duck on rice, chicken and prawn-stuffed fried wonton, and crispy pork with soy noodles all for 310 baht (£8.29) or less. Turning to the bar, one can have the punch for 340 baht (£9.09), a fruity concoction of Bombay Sapphire, Shiraz and Cointreu or a deceptively potent cocktail called the Golden Pixie. Combined with its unique atmosphere, Maggie Choo’s solidifies its place as a Bangkok Nightlife must-visit.

Vesper Bar Bangkok

Vesper Bar
Vesper Bar

Named after James Bond’s famous martini, Vesper exudes class and sophistication. Since its transition from a bar and restaurant to a cocktail bar in 2017, Vesper has gained local and international recognition. Green marble, plush leather bar stools, and subdued lighting create the perfect vintage European bar aesthetic, and their cocktails have inspired aficionados all over the city. Its Art Book cocktail concept series was especially noteworthy with the bar earlier this year offering art-inspired cocktails using a combination of locally grown ingredients and cutting-edge culinary techniques. A great place to visit if you want your drinking experience to be both unique and sophisticated. 

The Clubhouse Sports Bar & Grill

The Clubhouse Sports Bar & Grill
The Clubhouse Sports Bar & Grill

Watching sports is very popular in Thailand and a big part of the culture. While many people think that Muay Thai is the top sport, other international sports are becoming even more popular with the locals.

An extensive Expatbet’s feature on sports betting in Thailand details how watching live matches and wagering on the results is a popular pastime in the country.

With most forms of wagering banned in Thailand due to strict gambling laws, many Thai’s indulge in their love of sports betting by placing bets on international football and basketball matches.

This has led to the rise of good sports bars in Bangkok where Thai’s can combine their love of food and sport in one place, and the best place for doing so is The Clubhouse Sports Bar & Grill.

Part of Clubhouse’s appeal is the wide variety of sports it shows, with no less than 11 HD TVs at the venue. Its spaciousness also offers a pleasant departure from the claustrophobic and dark wood-lined walls of so many of Thailand’s ‘British’-themed pubs.

Its solid international menu is backed by its selection of local beers, as well as imported offerings. 

Brown Sugar 

Brown Sugar Bangkok
Brown Sugar Bar

Around since the mid-1980’s, this venue is a staple in the Bangkok nightlife scene. Yet age doesn’t mean it’s no longer relevant- -even today Brown Sugar remains one of the best jazz bars in the city.

No band ever seems to play at the venue twice and the sounds only get funkier and upbeat as the night goes on. 

Though there’s an emphasis on the music, the menu holds its own and offers both Thai food and Western dishes. Classic cocktails like a Long Island Tea cost 280 baht (£7.48), local beers go for 160 baht (£4.28) and imported beers for 250 baht (£6.68).

Together with its standout music, Brown Sugar is the perfect place to dance the night away with friends in one of the best bars in Bangkok.

Tuba Bar

Tuba Bar Bangkok
Tuba Bar

Part antique gallery and part bohemian hangout, Tuba Bar is definitely an eccentric place. 10Best’s review of Tuba Bar details that many of the antiques, paintings and retro furniture are even for sale, making it perfect for art aficionados.

The Thai-Italian menu boasts a mouth-watering selection of pizza, calamari and sea bass. Afterwards, it can be washed down with a wide selection of beers. For the more daring though, there’s the option of trying their goblet-sized cocktails. 

Written by Michael

6min read

3 Comments

Nestled in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains of Southern Spain’s Andalusia region, Granada is not just a hidden gem, but a treasure trove of diverse ethnic groups and cultures. Exotic, breathtaking and serene, the old Moorish city is a cultural delight with its rich history. Striking Islamic architecture and beautiful Arab influence contrast against Spanish heritage, and renaissance and gothic aesthetics.

Tapas, wines, cheeses, jamones, flamenco, art, and history. There is no shortage of activities and sites to see, every corner is bursting with flavor and character. Here are a few highlights that are a must for any visitor.

1. The Alhambra (including Generalife, Nasrid Palace and Alcazaba)

Alhambra granada Spain
Alhambra granada Spain

Set against the backdrop of the stunning Sierra Nevada peaks, The Alhambra is an imposing fortress that sprawls across the hilltop.

The site includes royal palaces, peaceful gardens, patios, fountains and impressive Islamic architecture.

It is the greatest surviving relic of Andalusia’s 800 years under Moorish rule, built between the 8th and 15th centuries.

Once a walled citadel where Sultans resided, Alhambra is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

There is little doubt as to why this is the most visited monument in Spain, at times attracting over 6,000 visitors a day

This amazing structure is divided into 3 parts: the Nazrid palaces, the battlements or Alcazaba, and the gardens of Generalife . Dont panic, but there are five different types of admission tickets to choose from. 

  1. 1.Alhambra General (includes everything – the Nasrid Palaces, Generalife gardens, Alcazaba)
  2. 2.Gardens, Generalife and Alcazaba
  3. 3.Night Visit to Nasrid Palaces
  4. 4.Night Visit to Generalife Gardens
  5. 5.Combined Visit Alhambra and Rodriguez-Acosta Foundation

Tickets will sell out quickly during peak tourist season. But dont worry, you will be able to purchase tickets to the Alhambra between two hours and four months in advance.

Purchase tickets:

  • On the Website HERE. If you don’t have your own printer, visitors can print the tickets at one of the vending machines next to the Alhambra entrance using the reservation number. 
  • By Phone (+34) 858 953 616, information 958 027 971. 
  • At the ticket office on the same day if any are still available.

  • Note: You should schedule at least four hours for a trip to the Alhambra. 
  • By Bus: You can take the red minibus Alhambra Bus C30 or C32, which leave every 8-12 minutes from Isabel Catolica Square to the Alhambra. The stop where you need to get off is called ‘Alhambra – Generalife 2’. 

2. Granada Cathedral and the Royal Chapel

Granada Cathedral Spain
Granada Cathedral

In the heart of the city stands a most magnificent cathedral. This massive sanctuary was commissioned by Queen Isabella I in the early 16th century. This was immediately after the conquest of Granada and was constructed on the site of the Main Mosque. It is not only the fourth largest cathedral in the world but the first Renaissance cathedral in Spain. 

Immediately upon entrance, visitors are struck by the beautiful circular design and unique walls of the main chapel. A visit to just the main chapel alone would be worth the trip.

Right next door is the Royal Chapel, the burial site of two of Spain’s most notable historical figures, Queen Isabella I and King Ferdinand II. The ornate burial tombs were all hand carved by sculptors from marble and are the real highlight of this monument.

The Granada Cathedral and the Royal Chapel each have a seperate entrance fee. Tickets can be purchased directly at the ticket office of the Granada Cathedral. 

  • General admission, individual or groups: 5 euros (audio guide included)
  • Students and people with disabilities: 3,5 euros 
  • Children under 12: free entry 
  • Note: Photography is not allowed inside the Royal Chapel of Granada.

3. The Sacromonte

  • By Bus: You can reach the Cathedral of Granada using Granada city buses, routes 4, 8, 11, 21, 33 (the bus stop is ‘Gran Via 1’ or Cathedral), routes C31, C32, C34 (the bus stop is ‘Plaza Isabel Catolica’). 

This bustling neighborhood is home to Granada’s Roma community – a 15th century gypsy quarter with many cave dwellings and whitewashed streets to explore.

Youll spend hours roaming the district, being transported back into a place frozen in time. Thanks to the steep streets, the views from the top are picturesque, with panoramic views across the neighbouring towns. 

Sacromonte region buildings
Sacromonte region

The Museo Cuevas del Sacromonte consists of eleven cave houses, giving visitors a tour steeped in customs and history. It takes about one hour and costs 5€ per person. 

While in Sacromonte, allow yourself to be seduced by the strumming of the Spanish guitar and the clicking of flamenco dancers.

It is here that you can witness and experience the most authentic long-standing tradition of flamenco performed by the Spanish gypsies (Gitanos or Roma).

The Gitanos mix the traditional Spanish flamenco with Arab belly dancing and shows are still frequently held in cave homes. 

  • By Bus: You can reach the Sacromonte from Plaza Nueva by bus number C34. The buses have an average frequency of 20 minutes. Duration of the trip is about 15 mins.

4. Granada ancient Arab baths

A hammam is an Arab bath – hot steam bath followed by a massage. Heavenly. In Granada, thanks to the Arab culture influence, visitors can explore the Ancient baths and experience the pleasure in some of the new, modern ones in the El Albaicín district. 

Ancient Arab baths Granada
Ancient Arab baths Granada

El Bañuelo is the most famous of the hammams in Granada and provides a glimpse into Moorish life and history.

While there is no longer any running water, these 11th century baths have been maintained and are some of the few Moorish buildings that were not torn down after Granada was seized by the Spanish Kings.

The original brickwork and windows have been maintained and are an absolute marvel. Visits cost 2 euros per person and are free on Sundays. 

After checking out the old baths, head over to one of the modern ones that are managed by professionals and treat yourself like a sultan with a relaxing bath amid spectacular decor while sipping on mint tea. 

  • By Bus: You can reach the Bañuelo by Granada city bus routes C31 and C32, the bus stop is ‘Banuelo’, or walking. Bañuelo is close to Plaza Nueva. 

5. Painting Excursion

Painting Granadas streets
Painting Granadas streets

Granada is undeniably breathtaking and unique. Between the stunning mix of culturally diverse architecture, steeped in rich history and the magnificent natural scenery of the Sierra Nevada mountains in the background, Granada is awe-inspiring.

No wonder artists of all types have fallen under Granada’s spell and found their inspiration in the ancient Moorish city. For those looking for their muse, a painting retreat in Granada would be a unique and unforgettable holiday. 

About the author:

Cristy “Pandoradota2” Ramadani is a behind the scenes Dota 2 professional Jack of All Trades. A freelancer, journalist, reporter, and travel writer for uptrek.com, Cristy is an avid reader and passionate cupcake baker. 

Written by Michael

6min read

11 Comments

Copenhagen is nestled in the beautiful Northern islands of the near-utopia that is Denmark.

The country is consistently ranked in the top 3 happiest countries in the world and when you visit Copenhagen, its pretty easy to see why.

The capital has everything you could want for a perfect weekend getaway. The best patisseries, the cutest buildings, tonnes of art, fascinating history, unique activities, and stunning parks for you to laze all day in.

Copenhagen certainly has that big city feel. However, its small enough for you to walk around the whole place in a day.

Read on to find out what to do in the capital of Denmark, the country that pays its students to go to university.

Unexplored alleyways and courtyards

It’s really easy to stick on the main streets when walking through Copenhagen. There’s nothing wrong with this, they’re stunning and full or great eateries.

However, if you slow it down and take a look around, you’re going notice lots of little alleyways. These little alleyways lead you to the cities beautiful and deserted courtyards.

When you’re in one of these courtyards the sound of Copenhagen disappears and you’re free to explore all the little secrets they hold.

In one of these courtyards you’ll find a fountain that runs the whole height of the surrounding buildings. In another you can find a tree made out of wine bottles.

Each one has it’s own little secrets for you to explore and there are countless more!

Famous Danish pastries

Going to Denmark and not stuffing your face with their famous pastries is like going to church and not praying.

You’re not just going to visit the home of mouth watering pastries and ignore them are you?

No? Didn’t think so!

Some of the best patisseries in the world are found in Copenhagen. They all serve the multilayered sweet bundles of joy we know and love.

Some patisseries are more traditional while others have taken a contemporary twist on the food. Try them all to find your favourite!

Boating on the canals

Fancy doing something relaxing and a little different? Then hiring a boat with some friends and exploring the cities water ways is for you!

You can truly experience Copenhagen from the water by hiring a boat from GoBoat. The boats are even silent as they are solar powered.

copenhagen new harbour river
copenhagen-new-harbour-river

You can hire them for up to 3 hours and they even include a little table for you to sit around and drink at!

A great way to relax with some friends while exploring the city.

The parks of Copenhagen

The parks! Oh the parks!

If you have had your fill of beautiful buildings and delicious food then head to one of Copenhagen’s beautiful parks.

These pictures are taking from the Kings Gardens which has so much space for you to relax, explore, and most importantly – activities!

There park is the oldest in the city and was built as private gardens for King christian IV around the rather sumptuous Rosenborg Castle.

The park is split into sections with many having flower gardens and there are even beautiful waters around the castle.

Other parks for you to explore in the city include the Botanical Gardens, Frederiksberg Gardens, and Kalvebod Fælled.

Scoot around Copenhagen

Everywhere you walk in Copenhagen you will see electric scooters propped up in the most random places.

You may think they’ve just been abandoned, but no, they are part of multiple electric scooter schemes in the city!

copenhagen electric scooters

All you have to do is download the app, put in your payment details, and scan the scooters QR code.

Then zooooooom, off you go around the city at up to 20km/hr.

If your scooter runs out of juice then just scan another scooter you find.

These things are such a great and fun way to see the city. I wish we had them in London, but the silly laws are stopping it D:

Tivoli Gardens

An evening spent at Tivoli Gardens is an evening spent well in Copenhagen.

The 19th Century Amusement is the second oldest amusement park in the world (the 1st is also in Denmark), and is both thrilling and stunning at the same time.

Walt Disney even used it for inspiration!

Located in the heart of the city the amusement park is great for all ages.

There are rides for everyone from kiddies to thrill seekers and also lush gardens for you to explore, all within the amazing architecture of the park.

The best time to visit however, is definitely at night as the whole park is illuminated by thousands of beautiful lights.

Nyhavn area

If you have seen any pictures of Copenhagen it’s likely you’ve seen pictures of the New Harbour.

The new harbour is the most touristy part of Copenhagen but it is still exceedingly beautiful.

The buildings along the canals are painted with all the colours you can see on the telletubbies, and the canals are full of traditional boats you just want to sail around the world on.

Outside Copenhagen

If you’ve got a little bit of extra time in Copenhagen then you should definitely head out of the city and delve into the rest of Denmark!

A great little half day or full day trip is to the Louisiana Museum of Modern art 30 minutes outside the capital.

Some of the art at this place is amazing, and some is a admittedly a little whacky. However, the main reason I loved the museum was it’s grounds!

The grounds are huge and have some great sculptures in them. The whole area is a great place to relax and even have a nap.

Being next to the sea you can hear the waves crashing on the shore, and also see Sweden!

Frederiksborg Castle is another stunning day outside of Copenhagen.

The largest Renaissance castle in Scandinavia is about a 30 minute train ride from the city and visiting the castle will take you back centuries!

The castle was built in 1621 but then burnt down in 1859! The castle was re built to its former glory and it’s absolutely stunning.

You can explore the ground and lakes for hours on end and the castle is a actually a museum so is full of fancy pants artefacts for you to view.


For a weekend away, Copenhagen is a great destination. The city is small enough for you to explore on foot but packs a punch when it comes to awesome things to see!

However, if you’re staying for a bit longer than a weekend, there are also plenty of day trips for you to explore outside of the city!

Enjoy you beautiful bunch x

Written by Michael

7min read

1 Comment

It’s a mystery to me why Zadar is often overlooked as a destination in Croatia. Especially as there are so many things to do in Zadar, Croatia

When planning a trip to Croatia, the destinations that most likely to pop into your mind are Split, Dubrovnik, or Zagreb. 

Zadar croatia old town drone shot

These destinations are stunning. However they are slightly over run by tourists and are only scrape the surface of what Croatia really has to offer. 

If your looking for a destination in Croatia just as beautiful and intriguing as Dubrovnik, has an ancient city to explore, and is packed full of stunning day trips into the heart of Croatia…

Then Zadar is a destination you have to consider!

Zadar Old Town

The old town in Zadar is is one of the most intriguing and stunning that you will visit in Europe.

A lot of European cities have old towns, and many of them are beautiful; Krakow, Ljubiana, and Vilnius spring to mind. 

Zadar Croatia St Donatus Church
Church of St Donatus from the air.

Now I’m not always up for walking around old towns – “Once you’ve seen a church, you’ve seen them all” I say to myself.

However, Croatian old towns are unique in their medievil-ness. You will feel like you’re walking through an Assassins Creed game or the set of GOT when you visit. 

Croatia Zadar Cathedral things to do
The Church of St Donatus with Zadar Cathedral in the background.

The old town in Zadar is famous for the Church of St Donatus and its an absolute must visit. Once your inside you will feel like you’ve been transported to another century.

Walking up Zadars Cathedral Tower, which is the old towns highest point, will provide 360 views across Zadars stunning rooftops. 

Next to the church is the main square which has tonnes of old building remains for you to explore and pose in front of. 

Sea Organ/Monument to the Sun

The area on the north western tip of Zadars old town island is a lovely, yet somewhat surreal place to relax and spend some time, especially at night. 

monument to the sun zadar drone
That big blue circle is ‘The Monument to the Sun’

When you start to approach the shore you’ll start to hear strange alien noises.

This is the Sea Organ, an installation built into the coast that produces sounds through the action of the waves pushing air through it. You can sit along its steps and listen to them for hours. 

zadar old town drone
Zadar you beauty.

You’ll also notice a huge blue circle dominating the ground in this part of town. This is the ‘Monument to the Sun’.

Don’t worry, no sacrifices are made here.

The monument is made out of solar panels that light up at night. When dark descends these panels produce a mesmerising light display for you to walk over. 

Zadar monument to the sun at night
Those lights <3

This part of town is great to relax at night after your evening meal.

You have the sound of the waves crashing, the sound of the sea organ, and the mesmerising light display beneath your feet. 

Zadar Diving boards. 

Just outside the old town of Zadar, on Kolovare beach, is a swimming pool and diving boards complex.

Zadar Croatia diving boards into sea
An awesome place to relax just outside of Zadars Old Town.

The diving boards don’t hang over the pool, they hang over the sea! You can spend hours relaxing in the beautiful waters. 

This is a great place to spend a couple of hours soaking up the sun without leaving Zadar. Head here in the evening to dive into the ocean withe Zadars stunning sunsets as your back drop!

Zrmanja Canyon 

A short drive from Zadar is Zrmanja Canyon. This 70km long snaking river cuts through the Croatian landscape and has some stunningly steep cliffs and warm flowing turquoise waters.

Zrmanja River Canyon zadar croatia
Kayaking along Zrmanja river Canyon

The area is a great place to trek along and there are some stunning viewpoints.

During certain months of the year there are also kayaking and rafting tours available!

Dugi Otok – full day trip

Dugi Otok Island is a 90 minute ferry ride from Zadars main port and a fantastic day trip from Zadar. 

The island has its own National Park and is an adventurers paradise.

However, it can also be a wonderful destination if you’re looking to relax. 

Dugi Otok national park mike treks
Dugi Otok and it’s National Park from the air.

The island is 45km long and has countless quaint beaches and traditional towns dotted along its coast. The biggest of which Is Sari, where you can find some nice restaurants, but the town is still tiny. 

One of the big attractions on Dugi Otok is Telascica National Park to the south of the island. The park has stunning turquoise lakes to swim in and breathtaking vantage points for you to gawk at.

Along the coast you will also find 3 abandoned Soviet submarine bases that you can explore from land or sea. Their history is quite interesting!

dugi otok sunken ship wreck
Dugi Otok’s famous ship wreck.

The islands northern tip holds the islands biggest secret though. A short kayak or boat ride to two small islands will reveal a large sunken cargo ship just begging you to explore it. This is one fo the more adventurous things to do in Zadar, Croatia.

The ship is in the shallows so get your snorkel out! Swim down and explore the ship with the countless fish that have made it their home. 

dugi otok car rental mike treks
Renting a car is a great way to explore Dugi Otok.

To explore the island for the day you can rent a car and take the car ferry. You can also join kayaking tours that will take care of your whole day. Check out Kayak Tours Croatia who are the most reputable. 

If you like the look of Dugi Otok that much you can even book accommodation on the island and make it your base for exploration and use Zadar as a day trip! 

Krka National Park  – 1/2 day – full day trip

Krka National park is one of Croatias 8 stunning National Parks and is about an hours drive from Zadar. It’s definitely one fo the top things to do in when visiting Zadar in Croatia

You can drive there yourself or join one of the many tour groups that go daily. 

krka national park zadar croatia mike treks
Overlooking the stunning waterfalls

The park is vast and its main attraction is a series of stunning waterfalls that are straight out of Avatar. Your even allowed to swim in their waters from June – Sept, unlike Plitvice National Park! 

Other attractions include Vosavic Island in the middle of a vast lake, as well as Rosksi Slap which is series of gentle waterfalls. 

Due to its beauty however, the park becomes extremely busy so I would recommend hiring a car and arriving when it opens at 8am as the tour buses start arriving at about 10am. 

krka national park waterfalls mike treks
Acting cool in front of the waterfalls.

Like the sound of Krka? Read my full guide on how to get the most out of your trip to the park. 


When leaving for Zadar, people will ask the same thing; “Split or Dubrovnik?”. When you tell them Zadar, all you will have is blank faces. 

This little known City along the beautiful Croatian coast is packed full of surprises and is a great base from which to explore the heart of Croatia.

The varied sights in the city and the great day trips that are within easy reach make this region an adventurers paradise. There are plenty of amazing things to do in Zadar, Croatia

Get out there an explore it!

Written by Michael

5min read

5 Comments

Flying is a wondrous past time.

Most people flying are jetting off on holiday to experience a new country and culture, see friends and family, or in a lot of cases these days, get absolutely off their trolley.

What you get up to between your outbound and return journey will likely be pretty special and form memories that will stay with you forever, or you’ll form some infections if you’re off to Ayia Napa.

The flying experience to and from your destination can be also be great, and hopefully infection free.

Flying is so exciting!

However, when you cram so many people into a small metal tube for multiple hours then it’s inevitable that frustrations can occasionally rise.

These frustrations could easily get someones holiday off to a salty start and we don’t want that to happen to anyone, including you!

So, heres some tongue in cheek tips on how to make yours and everyones flying experience a good one, and how not to be a dick.


“We’d like to board people in zone 1 only please”

*everyone gets up and rushes to board*

People have an assigned seat, and their group will be called, everyone will get on board before the plane leaves.

All these people do is slow everyone else down and annoy the stewards who will calmly tell you them to piss off.

My top tip is to wait till the end, no queuing!


Please, stand in the aisle when everyone is trying to get past. 

Here’s the process: walk to your isle, bag in overhead bin, and swooosh, down you go into your seat to let the next people past.

Get the stuff you need out your bags before you’re even on the plane.

None of this rummaging around in bags and pockets while you stand in the middle of the isle, otherwise my suitcase might accidentally run over your foot.


Oh of course, you want to sit in my seat, that I specifically booked.

Now this has never happened to me before but I have plenty of friends who it has happened to.

You get on your plane where you have a specific seat reserved, only to board and find someone sitting in it pleading the 5th.

If it’s a genuine reason then I don’t blame someone for asking, but let the person sit in their seat first then ask them, don’t just automatically sit in it!


Yes, please help yourself to my arm rest.

Some people are just all elbows aren’t they?

If someone only has one arm rest, don’t hog it or elbow there arm off it.


Use the long arm of the law on your kids.

No, I don’t mean beat them with your long ass arm. I mean instil some discipline in them.

Flying can be tiring and uncomfortable for many, so if your kid is kicking the chair in front them, tell them to stop.

If your kid is yelling the plane down because they didn’t get the window seat, calmly sedate them.

If you your child is constantly asking, “are we there yet?”, tell them that every time they ask that again, they’ll get one less present at Christmas.

And anyway, families with small children, we all secretly give you the evils when you get to board first.


I don’t want your phone to make us crash.

I know the chance of it happening is like 0.00001%.

BUTTTTTT,

When the flight attendants ask you to turn off your electronic devices, just do it.

I’m sure twitter can wait for your latest hilarious anecdote.


I just love it when my meals finally come, then you shove your chair back.

I really did want to wear my food today instead of eat it.

At meal times simply bring your chair up. If you want to recline, just a little check behind you to see if the person behind is still eating wouldn’t hurt.


Dude, keep your socks on

Do I need to say more…?

And if you’re behind me, definitely don’t pout your feet on the back of my arm rest.


The wheels have touched the runway…goooo!

You always have a couple of eager beavers who try to get a head start as soon as the wheels touch the tarmac.

Let’s gooooo….

You hear those seat-buckles unclip, theres a sense of rush in the air, and you hear people rummaging around in those over head bins.

It’s a great feeling when the attendant calls over the tannoy for them to sit back in their seat that they’ve probably reclined so far back they think they’re already on the beach.


People in front of you Leave first…

This is a universal system, and the quickest one!

The rows of people in front of you leave then you leave.

I mean, look at the guy on the right!

If this system falls apart, then civilisations will fall, and the end of the world will be nigh.

You don’t want that on your shoulders do you?


Most importantly… be in a great mood, you’re on holiday!

The things listed above are bound to happen time to time on flights.

Its inevitable when you cram so many people into a small space that people will occasionally become annoyed with each other.

However, you’re going on holiday so these small things should be dwarfed by how excited you are about your trip!

Flying should be and is a enjoyable experience!

If you do find someone annoying you in the any of the ways listed above, or others, and its making your flight uncomfortable, with a smile just politely ask them if they could not do it anymore.

Happy flying people!

Written by Michael

8min read

6 Comments

Including Krka National Park, Croatia has 8 stunning National Parks for you to choose from, each with their own unique wonders. You’ve probably seen oodles of pictures all over Instagram showing off their glorious attractions; stunning waterfalls, deep valleys, roaring rivers, and towering mountains just seem to be a part of Croatia.

krka waterfalls mike treks
Overlooking the beauty of the Krka’s waterfalls.

My friend Perry and I were spending a weekend in the beautiful city of Zadar and luckily one of Croatias best National Parks was just a hours drive from the city. Like us you can spend the whole day exploring Krka National Park, read on to find out how to make the most out of your visit.


When to visit. 

Its no secret that Krka National Park is no secret! Thousands of people visit the park every day to be immersed in it’s stunning surroundings. Avoiding these crowds could be the difference between you loving your day at the park and wishing you stayed at the pebbly beach. Luckily though, you can pretty much have the park to yourself if you plan it right.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwMbJ6-_yE4
A short film of Krka National Park from the air.

There’s two main ways you can avoid the crowds. Firstly, whatever day your visiting, visit as early as possible. Trust me, you wont regret dragging your lazy ass out of bed. 

The park opens at 8am and getting there for this time will mean you only have to share the vast expanse of the park with a handful of people. The tourist busses start to arrive between 9 and 10am so you’ll have at least a couple of hours of bliss. 

Secondly, if you can visit on a weekday then absolutely do, The weekends are obviously the busiest days at the park so weekday visit will be a lot less busy.

You’ll also want to visit after May and before October, read on to the swim section to find out why…


Where to enter the Park.

There are two main entrances to Krka National park;

Skradin

Skradin is a small town just outside Krka National Park. If you are driving you can park here for the day (it’s 50 kuna, not free like the signs say). If you have a bit of time to kill before or after your trip to the park then definitely look around Skradin, its beautiful!

From Skradin you can take the stunning boat ride into the park. The peaceful ride lasts about 20minutes and takes you along the gorgeous blue-green river.

Lozovac

Lozovac is the second main entrance and is closer to the waterfalls than Skradin. Parking is free and there’s a bus service that takes you to the main waterfalls, or you can walk the 875m. It’s up to you!

Theres also 3 other official smaller entrances to the park; Roski slap, Krka Monestery, and Burnum.

Entrance fees for an adult include the boat ride and are:

April/May/Oct Jan/Feb/Mar/
Nov/Dec/
June-Sept
100kn 30kn 200kn

Swim in Krka National Park

One of the great attractions for you at Krka National Park is the fact that you’re allowed to swim in a section of the parks waters – something you can’t do at Plitvice National Park!

krka waterfalls croatia
Such a stunning place!

Just in front of the lowest, and arguably the most beautiful waterfall, you will find a large section of water you can swim in. Here you can bathe in the crystal clear waters for as long as you want while exploring the limestone nooks and crannies that have been formed over the millennia. In the waters you’ll also find plenty of fish to sneak up on and chase around (I definitely didn’t do this…).

you’ll find a boom stopping you getting too close to the waterfalls, which is actually a good thing as these raging beasts would do you a lot of damage if you went under them!

krka national park croatia
It was a little chilly!

Unfortunately, you can only swim in Krka National Park between the 30th May and 30th September.

You may be thinking to yourself “Pfttt why would I want to swim outside these dates anyway?”, and you’re probably right. The weather most likely wont be the best and the waters will be freezing. 

However, that’s exactly what my friend Perry and I did! We visited on the 27th May with our swimming trunks and towels in hand, only to find out we couldn’t swim.

We were very sad, but the warden let us pop into the shallows for a bit as it was only 4 days away from swimming opening. Very niceeeee.

As you get in you really become accustomed to the temperature and its absolutely stunning to swim in the crystal clear waters while you’re surrounded by the stunning landscape of waterfalls and mountains.


Exploring around the waterfalls

Around the waterfalls you’ll have no shortage of paths to explore that lead you to other water features and different vantage points around the falls. There’s around 6 main tiers of waterfalls and all have stunning view points. 

krka national park mike treks
A great vantage point overlooking one of the falls

Towards the top of the park and off to the left is a raised wooden path that lets you skip over the rushing waters and leads you to arguably the best vantage point of the falls. This path will also take you through almost deserted parts of the park and will take you back to the lower tiers of the waterfalls.

krka national park bridge
The raised path leading you over the waterfalls.

Throughout the park theres also quite a few old buildings known as the ethno village. Here you will find some historical buildings to explore and a couple have tastefully been turned into small cafes where you can get drinks and some food.


There’s so much more to Krka National Park…

Once you’ve had your fill of swimming and exploring around the waterfalls then there’s so much more for you to explore in the National Park, some of the highlights include… 

Visovac island

visovac island krka
Visovac Island

Past the waterfalls and in the middle of one of the parks upper lakes is a small island with the Monastery of Our Lady of Mercy and the Church of Our Lady of Visovac on it. 

Both buildings are nearly 600 years old and the island is stunningly beautiful to look at from the shore as well as once you are on it.

You can get a boat to the island from the waterfalls, or if you have a car you can drive to Stinica or Remetić which is a lot closer and a much shorter ferry ride. 

Roški slap

roski slap krka waterfalls
Roski slap waterfalls

Roški slap is another series of stunning cascading waterfalls, which very few people know about or visit. These waterfalls are 30km north of the main entrances of Skradin and Lozovac. Roški slap has dozens of tiers that are a lot gentler than the main ones in Krka. Oziđana pećina cave is also right next to Roški slap.

You can get to Roški slap by driving to it’s entrance and parking, and you will then walk about 30min to the falls. You can also hop on a 4 hour round trip boat ride from the main waterfalls between April and October

Skradin. 

skradin town alleyway croatia
One of the many stunning alleyways in the colourful Skradin.

Skradin is the town mentioned previously where you board the boat into the National Park. The town itself is stunning and you should definitely set aside some time to explore it.

There are multi coloured buildings down its cobbled streets, multiple ancient alleyways to explore, a fortress to explore with stunning views across the city, and the best service at a restaurant I have ever experienced!

The best service I have ever had at Konoba Dalmatino

If you have time after your trip to the park then I highly recommend spending the evening eating and drinking at Konoba Dalmatino. The restaurants service goes above and beyond to the point where they even found headache tablets to my friend Perry! It’s the perfect end to your day in the National Park before you head home.


Krka National Park is a stunning day out in one of Croatia’s best National Parks. The main Waterfalls are the big attraction and you can spend at least a couple of hours exploring them and their surrounding paths.

Outside of the main falls area are some lesser known but equally beautiful attractions such as the waterfalls and caves at Roski slap, as well as the monastery on Visovac Island.

Arrive as early as possible and preferably on a week day to have the vast park pretty much to yourself. And don’t forget tot explore the beautiful town of Skradin after or before your visit!

Michael x

Written by Michael

4min read

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A couple of months back I was visiting my mum in Liverpool for the weekend. Whenever I visit we like to head out into the countryside and go exploring. Neither of us had ever been to Malham in the Yorkshire Dales before, so that was where we were heading this time.

The Dales are about an hours drive from the outskirts of Liverpool and it was our luck that it had snowed there the night before. As we found out, a winter wonderland was awaiting us!

We only had the day so we decided to head to the village of Malham which is in the south of the Dales. We chose Malham as it has a large concentration of the parks main attractions dotted around it. Malham itself is a very cute and traditional English village that is worth a visit on its own!

It took us the whole day to do everything here so if you’re looking for a great day our in the Dales, here’s what you can do;

Malham Village:

As traditional an english pub as you can get
No parking machines or wardens here!

The village of Malham was the base for our exploration and it is your quint essential British village.  

Red phone boxes, milk churns to pay for your parking, ducks wandering about, and a cosy pub where you can have a drink and relax by the fire.

The ListerArms Pub and Hotel is a great place to relax. Here you can order traditional food and drink which includes your roasts, fish and chips, English scones (that are massive), as well as a gingerbread hot chocolate. The pub is dog friendly so there plenty of doggos around to ‘awwww’ at.

The village itself is so picturesque that you’ll find yourself dragging yourself away to head to the other attractions!

Gordale Scar:

Gordale scar is the Yorkshire dales Grand Canyon, just a little bit smaller, but still immensely impressive. 

Formed 100’s of years ago by water running through limestone, the ravine is flanked by cliffs over 100m high. Once you walk through the main field and enter the scar then you gain a full appreciation of its size and will feel tiny!

Deeper into the Scars you will find 2 large waterfalls that show you how this stunning feature was created. The Ravine is a great walk and will leave you in awe at the overhanging cliffs. 

Malham Cove:

By Nphotoltd – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

Malham cove is another stunning limestone formation that almost appears and as half of an amphitheatre (hence the name cove). It was formed 12,000 years ago by running glacial water.

The coves cliffs tower 80m above you provide a challenging ascent to climbers who visit the feature. The cliffs are also home to peregrine falcons that you can see darting about int he summer months. 

When there is enough water running over the top of these cliffs a huge waterfall cascades down the face of  Malham cove and when running is the tallest single drop waterfall in England!

Janets Foss:

Image by Tim Hill from Pixabay

Janet was actually the queen of the fairies and supposedly lived in a cave behind the waterfall. The legend must be partly true as the waterfall and its surrounding features sure do give the impressions of a fairy tale. 

Janets foss is a great place to relax by the sound of water. The small waterfall is just a short walk from Malham and will transport you to a world of peace and serenity.

A great place to have a picnic and relax in the waters surrounding the waterfall. 

Ribblehead Viaduct:

This stunning viaduct is still regularly used by trains today that zoom over its 24 huge stone arches 100ft above the marshes below. It is a little further from Malham than the previous attractions but if you have time, and a car, you should definitely visit it.

Unfortunately when we visited it was so foggy we couldn’t see it! We drove for a while to try and find it but we found a smaller viaduct that was just as impressive!


This list of activities for you in the Yorkshire Dales will make for a great day out. Take it leisurely and visit a couple of them, all go all out and try and visit them all in like we did!

Written by Michael

4min read

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Street food is an inseparable part of cuisine in Hanoi. So when in Hanoi, do as Hanoians do. This traveling motto sounds very easy to follow, but for those who are newcomers in the ancient capital city, finding the best street food can be a tricky venture.

However, you’re a smart one, and you’re reading this post. So let me divulge the best places to go and what to devour when you discover them.

Continue reading “How to Find the Best Street food in Hanoi.”

Written by Michael

3min read

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The countdown to Christmas has well and truly begun. It won’t be long until we are all opening our Christmas presents and celebrating the magical day with those we love dearly. But, where do you plan on spending your Christmas this year? If you are looking to enjoy the festive period in a new destination you should definitely consider some of Asia’s finest locations. There are lots of places in the continent that are assured to provide you with a very merry Christmas. Let’s take a look at these in further detail; where in Asia should you go for Christmas this year?

Continue reading “Some Of The Best Places To Go In Asia This Christmas”

Written by Michael

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eco-tourism Cambodia sunset
eco-tourism Cambodia sunset

The idea of eco-tourism is growing in popularity. This is especially true among backpackers who prefer to minimise their carbon footprint on holiday.

Cambodia, land of temples and tropical beaches, is increasingly draw for visitors with a eco-friendly aim. You may be keen to learn about Cambodian history, shop in vibrant markets, or try the delicious, fresh local food.

These days there are plenty of activities for eco-conscious travellers in Cambodia. If you’re interested in travelling sustainably in this picturesque South East Asian country, don’t miss these eco-tourism experiences:


Continue reading “The Best Eco-Tourism Experiences to Have in Cambodia”

Written by Michael

6min read

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So is Helsinki, Finland worth visiting and is there anything to do?

Nah don’t bother, its boring as anything…

If you don’t know what to do that is!

Luckily you have me to help you out…

Helsinki, Finland may have a rep as being a tad boring and I can kind of see why.

From the outside there doesn’t seem toooooo much to do. After all, a lot of people who spend a week or more in Finland do so in the north. Here the nature is the main draw.

However, delve into the culture a little bit and do as the locals do, and Helsinki is definitely a city worth spending 2 or 3 nights in.

Here’s some pretty dope ass reasons you should visit the city:


Kauppatori (Market Square)

The Market Square is a pretty cool place to visit any day. Situated next to the main harbour you can’t miss the brightly coloured orange tents.

The stalls sell fresh fruit and veg, cooked meals, interesting clothing, souvenirs, and local trinkets.

As it’s next to the harbour you also have boats mooring up that sell fresh fish to market goers.

Frequently on evenings, when the market has set down, the square will play host to cultural events like the classic car meet up that occurred when I was there.


Suomenlinna Island

Located right next to Market Square are the ferry companies that provide transport to the islands in the Helsinki Archipelago.

Suomenlinna Island is the main island that people visit as it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Suomenlinna Island
Suomenlinna Island

The site is actually 6 joined up islands that were an 18th century fort island built when Finland was part of Sweden to counter Russian expansionism.

Head over at sunset to catch some epic shots of Helsinki:


The pools and Saunas

While I was in the city I took a trip to 3 separate watering holes.

On my first full day in the city I spent pretty much all day at the Allas Sea pool.

This complex is situated in the harbour of Helsinki next to the big Ferris wheel. There’s 3 pools; one deep lane pool (where there is no lane discipline ffs), one shallow kiddies pool, and one deep pool filled with filtered sea water.

Theres also plenty of room to sunbathe on the deck or on one of the free deck chairs that are limited in number. Chilling here is a great option as you can soak up the sun, take a dip, and watch the cruise ships sail by.

On my second day I visited the Olympic Pool which is about a 20minute bike ride north from the city centre.

The 50m pool is great for swimming laps, there is also a little kiddies pool, as well as a deep diving pool which you can swim in and jump off the diving boards in the designated jumping periods.

Loyly Sauna is rated as the number one sauna in Helsinki, its around €18 for entry and well worth it.

The Sauna has a modern luxury feel to it and provides great food and refreshments.

After you’ve warmed up in the sauna theres a ladder leading down into the Baltic Sea for you to cool off in.


The beautiful people

From a male perspective, Helsinki contains the highest number of beautiful women I have ever come across in a city.

Fellow female travellers have said the guys aren’t too bad either. It must just be this Scandinavian genetics!

In my time in the city I met plenty of English, kiwi, and Aussie guys who have upped sticks and moved over to Finland after meeting the Finnish girl of their dreams. The rest of us can only dream…


Countless day trips from Helsinki

If you’re still wondering “Is Helsinki worth visiting?” then rest assured the city can be used as a base to explore many other parts of the country!

Lake Tuusula Finland
Lake Tuusula Finland

Many day trips are around an hour travel from central Helsinki and many will transport you to another world. Here are a few:

  • Porvoo – a medieval town that has narrow streets, cobbled roads, colourful buildings, and plenty of cute restaurants and cafe’s
  • Lake Tuusula – A Stunning lake with a 24km cycle road surrounding it. Home to many Finnish artists.
  • Nuuksio National Park – A national park that is almost completely unspoilt by humans. An idyllic get away.
  • Tallinn – A 2.5 hour ferry ride will take you to the capital of Estonia.

Renting a bike in Helsinki Finland

To rent one of Helsinki’s city bikes you pay €5 for one day – pretty good value!

Theres something ridiculous like 700 docking stations in and around the city so you’ll never go somewhere and not have somewhere to dock your bike.

Fortunately, from my experience, Helsinki isn’t too hilly so the riding is pretty easy and the quality of the bikes isn’t too bad either.

A great way to see the city and surrounding areas.

renting bikes helsinki finland
renting bikes helsinki finland

Outdoor lifestyle

Helsinki’s residents love to do things outdoors In their cities open spaces – of which there are quite a few.

I regularly saw large groups of people having BBQs and gatherings in the city parks.

Children are brought to all kinds of events in Helsinki

During the day and especially of an evening you should take a trip to Park Esplanadi. This long thin strip of grass runs through a central part of the city and has a great atmosphere during the day and a buzzing one during the evenings.


The drone laws in Helsinki Finland.

As I’ve recently come into the possession of a drone I’ve quickly had to become savvy on drone laws wherever I’m flying.

Many countries I feel, are overly strict with their laws which is a real shame as it restricts you a lot with where you can fly your drone – sometimes nowhere it seems.

Thankfully however, Finnish drone laws are sensible, practical, and follow a common sense approach.

helsinki Finland from drone
helsinki Finland from drone

There are 3 no fly zones within the city of Helsinki which are around government and other important buildings.

The rest of the city you can fly in as long as you’re not exceeding 150m and not above large crowds. That lets you get epic shots like this:


So, is Helsinki Finland it worth it?

These are just 8 reasons why Helsinki, Finland is well worth a visit for around 2 or 3 nights.

Helsinki is slightly more expensive than other western countries but no where near the prices you will find in Sweden, Norway, or Iceland. A short break can be more than manageable for the budget.

In addition to the reasons noted above there are of course your usual city walking tours, churches to visit, and beaches to lay on.

If you’re planning on staying longer in Finland then its probably worth including the north of the country in your itinerary. Here the natural landscape can provide countless activities on a longer holiday.

Written by Michael

5min read

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Alaska is by far one of the most exciting regions to visit in the world. The reasoning for this is quite simple – it is the “final frontier” for most tourists and a tempting playground for hardcore adventurers. However, do not be taken aback by its vast wilderness and harsh climate! It is as enticing to casual vacationers as it is to adrenaline junkies. If you are having second thoughts on visiting this captivating corner of the globe, here is the ultimate guide to visiting Alaska that might convince you to give it a chance.

Continue reading “The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Alaska”

Written by Michael

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We all know that every country in the world is different. Different traditions, customs, and social norms are a wonderful new experience, but can often take a unsuspecting visitor by surprise. Britain is no different, with such a rich history certain things have evolved that may want to take note of before you visit.

Continue reading “15 Things Worth Knowing About Britain Before you Visit.”

Written by Michael

3min read

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You might be tempted to plan your Seattle trip for the height of summer. After all, why would you want your view from the top of the Space Needle spoiled by Rain City’s infamous gray drizzle? But you’ll find something in Seattle for every season, whatever the weather. Whether you’re sightseeing during the more mild months or enjoying cozy cafes and the nearby ski slopes in winter, Seattle offers the perfect getaway.

Continue reading “An Adventure for Every Season in Seattle”

Written by Michael

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The food at London Markets is one of the many sprinkles on the giant cake that is London.

South London has no shortage of these mouthwatering markets.

In recent years the south of London has exploded in with cool things to do and trendy places to be.

Whether it’s a day out with family and friends, or a cheeky evening date, these markets will leave you wanting more with their quirky little stalls and unique vibes.


Maltby Street Market – Bermondsey

South London markets food
Maltby Street Market has delicious offerings!

Maltby Street Market is getting rave reviews from the people who go there. Thankfully it can still be classed as a hidden gem – some people who live in Bermondsey don’t even know it’s there!

The market runs down a thin strip of road that is sandwiched in between the arches of a railway line on one side and modern blocks of flats on the other.

Maltby street London markets
The narrow slither that is Maltby Street Market

Open on Saturdays and Sundays the market caters for all types of food. You’ll find sweet and savoury waffles, dedicated beef stalls, Brownie stalls, and a cheese truck.

The market also caters very well for vegans and vegetarians. Enjoy!


Flat Iron Square – Southwark

Flat Iron Square London Markets
Flat Iron Square seating

Flat iron Square is the newest addition on this list. Opened in 2016 it carries on the theme from Maltby Market of railway arches.

Situated within 7 of these arches you can find a fantastic pizza joint, Motherclucker, Savage Salads, a pancake stall, and south east Asian cuisine.

The market contains a green space that is perfect to relax in during the day.

The project is the first step on trying to link together different communities along the bankside rail viaduct. Hopefully this will lead to more unique South London markets!


Greenwich Market – my fave London markets

Greenwich market London
Greenwich market is my fave (not biased at all)

Image via Flickr from Garry Knight

Having recently gone through major restoration project, Greenwich Market is now a fresh and shiny covered market that plays host to every kind of stall you can imagine.

Within the main hall of the market are the temporary stalls that range from hand crafted watches all the way down to the tastiest Chinese food.

Around the edge of the market, built into its structure, are permanent shops. Some of these range from a dedicated map store to a shop full of antique posters.

The food is towards the north side of the market and literally ranges from all corners of the world. The sushi stalls are my favourite.


Spa Terminus – Bermondsey

If you’re visiting Maltby Market that’s number 1 on this list, then you also have to take a trip to Spa Terminus. Spa Terminus is literally down the road from Maltby!

Spa Terminus is a new addition to the area and is made up of sellers who were previously at Maltby market. The sellers decided to set up another market with a slightly more traditional feel.

Here you will find among others: Ice Cream Union, the London Honey Company, Mons Cheesemongers, and fine wine establishments.


Venn Street Market – Clapham

Venn street market in the sun
Venn street market in the sun

Open every Saturday on Clapham Common Venn street market is a market that works specifically with local producers and farmers.

You will find vegetable stores, fish mongers, bakeries, cheese stalls, and of course brownie stalls!

There are plenty of areas to sit down and soak up the atmosphere. There are also plenty of places to sit down and enjoy the lovely food and drinks that on offer!


The best food at London Markets?

These 5 markets are each unique in their own way and have slightly different vibes.

All these markets are south of the river and within public transport distance, so you could definitely visit more than one in a day if you like.

The food you find will be different in each market, as will be the establishments in which you sit down and eat in.

Take note of these 5 markets and let your tastes buds have a great day out too!

Written by Michael

5min read

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You’re not going to find any Empire State Building tours or Sydney Harbour Bridge walks on this awesome adventure trips list.

These are 5 of the most unique travel experiences you can encounter across the world.

Just completing one of these bad boys is going to create a lifetime of memories that you can bring up at fancy dinner parties, and blow the socks off everyone listening.


The Rickshaw Run – India

Adventure trips rickshaw run
The bonkers Rickshaw Run

Richard.birch from Wikimedia Commons

The guys over at The Adventurists are pretty bad ass. They literally run the most ridiculous adventure trips on this planet.

They’re also good people – when you complete these adventures you’re doing it all for charity. Apply halo accordingly.

The most popular and bonkers one of these adventures is called the Rickshaw Run. Your entry fee buys you a rickshaw decorated to your specification – people have gone for Thunderbirds, Pink Panther, and of course Anchorman themes.

Your challenge – to drive this 7hp bunch of crap from one side of India to the other.

You have two weeks to do this, at the start there’s a massive party and theres another one at the end of the route, in-between its up to you. Rickshaw on.


Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride – Cappadocia, Turkey

Cappadocia hot air balloons
Cappadocia hot air balloons

This experience is a little calmer than driving across India in a tin can, yet no less forgettable. You’ve probably seen images of the Cappadocia hot air ballon rides on your Facebook or Instagram feeds.

Picture dozens of colourful hot air balloons ascending  at sunrise over a beautifully green terrain thats punctuated by amazingly shaped stone outcrops – thats Cappadocia.

Getting up at the crack of dawn has never been more worth it. When you get to your hot air balloon you will have some refreshments, then you’ll get in to the basket.

As you silently and majestically rise in unison with dozens of other ballots the landscape will open up in front of you, bathed in the warm golden light from the sunrise.

The trip can last around 1.5 hours and when you land you’ll have champagne and other refreshments to celebrate!


Adventure Trips to The Largest Caves – Vietnam

Adventure trips - Hang en Vietnam
Looking swanky at Hang En Cave in Vietnam

You may have seen me write about this before. This is because I have been fortunate enough to tick this one off the list.

Due to its ridiculously pure limestone that is easily eroded by water, Vietnam has THE largest caves in the world.

It doesn’t just have the largest in the world, it also has the 3rd largest in the world too. The crazy thing is they were only discovered in the 1990’s – how did they miss them?!

Fortunately, you can tour them for yourself as part of a guided expedition. Hang En, the third largest cave in the world is a two day trip where you spend the night in the cave itself.

Hang Son Doon, the largest cave in the world, is a week long expedition for the most adventure prone.

The caves are still not that well known but they are becoming more and more popular. Go see them now before they become another Niagara Falls!


Adventure Trips over a whole continent – Europe

Interrail travel mike treks
Hanging out with friends made while interrailing

Interrailing is definitely one of those adventure trips everyone should do once in their life. You buy one train ticket that covers the whole of Europe and then off you go galavanting around for up to a month.

The great thing is that you can take any route you want and everyone takes a slightly different route visiting different places.

Within Europe there are so many unique experiences for you. You can swim in Lake Bled, go to a spa party in Budapest, experience great cuisine in Italy, party till 5am in Barcelona, and chill on a peaceful island in the Greek sun.

As well as seeing great destinations I found it really interesting to see big differences in countries train systems: Double decker trains that are so efficient in the Netherlands, to soviet style trains that you can walk faster than in the East.

Biggest tip – Do it solo! 🙂


Live like a tribesperson – Australia.

adventure trips arnhem land

Far away on the edge of Australias Northern Territory lies the Indigenous East Arnhem Land.

This sacred expanse of land is home tot he Yolngu people who live in the same traditional way that their ancestors did thousands of years ago.

If you’ve ever wanted to feel like a true tribes person then this is your ultimate opportunity.

You’ll spend a week with the tribe learning how to hunt, gather, make food, dance, as well as how to take part in traditional activities such as painting.

During this trip you will feel like you’ve travelled thousands of years into the past and will marvel at your remoteness.

After you leave you will feel like you have a new connection with the world and you will never be able to look at modern society in quite the same way.


These 5 adventure trips are each unique and unforgettable. Just completing one of these 5 adventures will leave you will a lifetime of memories and stories to tell.

The uniqueness of these trips means that no one else you know if likely to have completed them. I’ve personally been to on two of these 5 and no one I know has even heard of the caves in Vietnam!

Written by Michael

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Everybody loves holidays, that goes without saying. The change in surroundings, the very idea of breaking away from your daily routine and leaving it all behind is often enough to make a holiday good enough without even doing anything on it. That said, why settle for less? If you’re already on holiday, you might as well go the extra mile and actually enjoy your time somewhere in a country which you paid a hefty sum for plane tickets to get to. Holidays are nowhere near as common as we would like, whether it’s because you can’t get time off work, or maybe due to budgeting reasons, not everyone can go on holidays as much as they hoped, meaning we have to make do with the little time we do have. When you do actually finally make it to your holiday destination of choice, you’ve already committed, spent a decent amount of money to get there and probably already paid for a hotel or an Airbnb. For some, it might feel like spending on anything else would be suicide. Don’t let that feeling drag you and your holiday spirits down, people spend money on holiday, that’s just the nature of the beast, and at the end of the day, would you rather dip a little bit into your savings or have a mediocre holiday? Without any further ado, let’s look at things which you could splash some cash on during your vacation to whatever part of the world you decide to explore this time, and know that it will be worth it. Continue reading “When On Holidays, Go The Extra Mile: Make It Count.”

Written by Michael

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Let’s be honest, there are no shortage of Sushi restaurants in London.

Like most things in life however, not all sushi restaurants are created equally.

You can pop into some sushi restaurants and leave feeling like a wet fish full of disappointment.

What you’re really looking for are those restaurants that transport you to Japan, where local Japanese people go, and where you will leave feeling like a puffer fish full of delicious sushi and optimism.

Thankfully, if you are in London, you are blessed with some great and varied sushi options, here they are.


Eat Tokyo Sushi Restaurants

eat tokyo sushi restaurants london
Be warned – the lines do get quite big!

Stupidly, i’m going to start this list with my favourite sushi restaurant. I know you should save the best till last, but i’m just so excited about it!

Eat Tokyo is very popular; you’ll usually have a 10-15 minute line outside the restaurants, especially the one in Soho. Once you’re in however, its awesome and bustling.

The selection is so vast that you are literally given a ring binder by your server, who by the way, will likely be dressed in traditional Japanese attire.

The food is great quality and super cheap for London. Salmon Teriyaki nomnomnom.

Soho, Holborn, Notting Hill, and more. 


Zaibatsu – Greenwich

Zaibatsu Sushi Greenwich London
Zaibatsu Sushi Greenwich London

I cant write this article without including my local favourite.

To be honest, Zaibatsu in Greenwich South East London, looks rather drab from the outside. However, when you enter the very small and cosy establishment, it is full of atmosphere.

The small plastic chairs that surround the few tables remind you of South East Asia, and the food is good quality yet cheap.

You have to book to eat here because its so popular and seating is limited!

Greenwich


Sushi Cafe

Sushi Cafe platter london
Sushi Cafe platter London

All you can eat great sushi? Its not a dream you little munchkin!

Sushi Cafe’ in Battersea has a great fixed menu full of traditional and fusion style sushi, from which you are free to order.

However, it also has a buffet full of great sushi rolls and other dishes!

You have 90 minutes to eat as much as you can before the staff will roll you out like a sushi roll.

Battersea


Roka

Roka is rather fancy, and because of that, its rather expensive. However, if you’re willing to push the boat out a bit, its so worth spending the extra money.

The restaurants have an open grill in the middle of the room where you can see the sushi being cooked.

You can sit around this table if you want to get really close to the action!

Charlotte Street, Canary Wharf, Aldwych, and Mayfair. 


Sticks ‘N’ Sushi Restaurants London

sticks and sushi london

Sticks ‘N’ Sushi is extremely well established across London. It’s probably the second most expensive option on this list, behind Roka, but its provides great quality sushi in a warm and cosy atmosphere.

With soothing music playing in the background, all you need to do it sit back and let the extremely professional staff serve you beautifully created and scrumptious sushi.

Greenwich, Covent Garden, Wimbledon, and more. 


Rock Star Sushi Restaurant

Rock Star Sushi Bar is consistently rated 5 stars by pretty much everyone who visits it.

The establishment itself is tiny so you need to book, once you’re in however, the sushi looks and tastes amazing. The restaurant prides itself on the presentation of the food and it will delight you with its concoctions that are reasonably priced.

After you leave here and you’ll feel like a rock star sushi roll 😉

Merton

Written by Michael

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If you’re looking for the ultimate turkey travel guide, then look no further!

Turkey is has an enthralling history and its geographical position means it’s been home to a number of powerful civilisations. Greek city-states, Hittites, Assyrians, Phrygians, Cappadocians, Armenians, Romans, Byzantines, and Turks have all called Turkey home.

Continue reading “Your Ultimate Turkey Travel Guide.”

Written by Michael

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If you’re looking for a sports-crazy nation, then look no further than the USA. The country regularly tops the medal table at the Summer Olympics and plays host to the Super Bowl, the world’s most widely watched sporting event. Sports run through this country, as whole cities turn out to watch their college teams play, and game attendance numbers regularly top 100,000. With a country so rich in sports you really don’t want to miss any of it. Here are five of the best states for sports fans to visit.

Continue reading “The Best U.S States to Visit for Sports Fans”

Written by Michael

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Taking your family on holiday can craft memories that will last forever. However, the responsibility that comes with taking your family on holiday can be daunting, and the potential problems that can arise are numerous. The thoughts are probably going through your head — what if my little one becomes ill while we’re away? What if there is a natural disaster? With the recent collapse of Monarch Airlines, which stranded thousands of customers across the globe, you could also be wondering if you could become stranded as well.

These are all natural worries to have. However, they are all easily manageable if you take small and easy steps before and on your holiday to mitigate the potential pitfalls.

Continue reading “The Essentials for Peace of Mind On A Family Holiday.”

Written by Michael

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This like of the 5 best things to do in Bangkok will save your skin! Being a foreigner in a city as huge as Bangkok can be a daunting experience; you want to make sure you go to the best places and you absolutely don’t want to miss out on any opportunities in this jewel of Asia.

Having stayed in Bangkok a couple of times myself, and after gaining multiple tips from other travelers, I’ve compiled this list of the best leisure activities to enjoy during your stay. During your time in the city, make sure you stay in some of the best IHG hotels in Bangkok.

Continue reading “Things to do in Bangkok – The Top 5 Adventures.”

Written by Michael

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As you probably already know, travelling can be a life changing experience.

It gives you the opportunity to see sights around the world that you’ve never seen before. You can join other cultures that you’d never normally experience, and be able to appreciate other climates than what you’re used to at home.

There are also many benefits of travel that can also bring many other things into your life that can make you a better person. Want to know more?

Here’s the benefits of travel and how travelling can make you a better person.

Continue reading “Benefits of travel, How it Makes You A Better Person”

Written by Michael

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There are beautiful places to visit in Morocco everywhere you go in the country. Geographically this country is only about the size of California however, this dainty country has a population of about 34 million, and it is incredibly rich and complex in its history.

Moroccans have stayed one of the friendliest and most hospitable individuals within the world. You can virtually speak to anyone that has ventured through Morocco and they’ll all say a similar thing, that Moroccan kindness and cordial reception is one of the finest around. 

places to visit in morocco collage
Morocco collage

The country is full of colours, It’s beauty sparks from mountain ranges elongating throughout the country, to the glistening azure ocean, and the yellow sand dunes of the desert.

The country is additionally home to uncountable lovely cities, everyone adding to Morocco’s distinctive landscape and culture.

Here are ten of the loveliest places for you to go to.

Your Moroccon Holiday could be the best and most memorable holiday in a long time. 


Essaouira

Continue reading “The Best Places To Visit In Morocco.”

Written by Michael

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Theres a special green oasis in London, and its called Richmond Park.

It’s always special transporting yourself to one of these places in the middle of one of the worlds busiest cities.

Getting away from all the people who cant drive, shutting out the other annoying people in the world, and not having someone say sorry a million times after they’ve trodden on both your feet.

The park is situated south of the River Thames in west London and covers 2500 acres. The park is one of 8 Royal Parks in the city and is a National Nature reserve.

Richmond Park in London contains a unique environment that resembles much of what England used to look like hundreds of years ago (and I wish it did now). Thick forests with overarching trees, ponds dotted around the park, and hundreds of deer roaming freely.

Continue reading “A Winters Stroll Through Richmond Park in London.”

Written by Michael

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Phoenix, Arizona, is renowned for being one of the top cities in the USA for scenic hikes that will take your breath away. The city sits in the middle of the desert but is punctuated and surrounded by many hills and mountains that offer great views of the area. If you’re visiting the city and staying with friends, family, or in a great IHG hotel in Phoenix, then you have to take in at least one of these trails. These rocky outcrops are just waiting to be explored!

Continue reading “The Coolest Scenic Hikes in and Around Phoenix, AZ”

Written by Michael

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 You might have been thinking about going to the US for a holiday – and why not? Whether it’s a road trip, a jolly around New York, or a crazy-exciting holiday to Orlando’s theme parks, they’re all guaranteed to be super fun. It’s just there’s one big headache that comes about when you’re planning these trips…actually getting there. There’s the hassle of packing your luggage, dealing with the paperwork, wondering exactly how many coffees you’ll need to deal with the jetlag (or for the adventurous among us, finding out what is the absolute maximum amount of caffeine a human body can tolerate before, presumably, it just implodes).

Continue reading “Holidays to the US, the easy way”

Written by Michael

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For some reason the wanderlust never fades, and for me it bites especially hard at the beginning of a new year. The beginning of the year provides a great opportunity to explore destinations that come into their own in the cold winter months. Winter fairs, great architecture covered in pure white snow, and unique winter activites all draw people in to explore these locations at their best. Here are the 5 best destinations in Europe for a getaway at the beginning of the year.

Continue reading “The Top New Year Getaway Destinations in Europe.”

Written by Michael

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This New Zealand Travel Itinerary has been and will be our holy grail holiday for as long as we shall live and every bit of this Middle Earth quest has been special.

New Zealand is all about 30 million sheep, unbelievable panoramas and a warm, welcoming culture.

The Adventure Starts in the North…

Our adventure begins on the North Island in Auckland, the City of Sails, where we spend a better part of the first day learning the ropes of driving and navigating on the city’s busy roads.

The city is home to 1.7 million people but public transport isn’t the best, so hire a car! A visit to the cities iconic SkyTower, which is open till 10:30pm, shows amazing 360 degree views of the city from its observation deck.

Our exploits kick into high gear the next morning when the 3-hour ride to Paihia, Bay of Islands, becomes a 6-hour one when we ignore our GPS and stop at Orewa, Northland’s luxurious setting on the South Pacific that inspires the good life. We then finally arrive at the perfect seaside town of Paihia which has an illustrious history.

Our hotel, The Copthorne, is located right next to the historic Waitangi Treaty Grounds where the first accord was signed between the Māori people and the British crown.

The next morning we’re at the pier at 9 AM sharp to hop on to a freezing ocean cruise looking for whales, but alas, it wasn’t our day. Hungry from the high tides of the South Pacific, we land in the afternoon at the island town of Russel, the once-infamous, lawless whaling station known as the ‘Hellhole of the Pacific’.

After a satiating lunch overlooking the picture-perfect wharf, I’m seriously questioning the so-called ‘hellhole’ nature of this town.

A walk around the reformed Russell is eye-opening – not only does it possess an innately romantic feel, but it also houses the country’s oldest church, the Christ Church, complete with the original altar.

I stand in the cemetery beside the statue of the great Māori chief Tāmati Wāka Nene, who fought against colonial rule in Russell, and I cannot help but revere the stories of bravery and the musket holes in the walls.

Māori Culture at its finest

Pohutu Geyser New Zealand travel guide
Pohutu Geyser, Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley

Which brings us to the Māori culture, a ubiquitous, fascinating spirit that all New Zealanders, natives and otherwise, take great pride in. Rotorua, our next sojourn, is the polestar of this culture and part of the Whakarewarewa geothermal valley.

We feast our eyes on the near-threatened Kiwi bird and the 100-ft. tall Pohutugeyser, and get a taste of Māori dance, art and craft forms, and community spirit at Te Puia, the Māori village.

What better a way to wash down a busy day than unwind with natural geothermal bathing? That’s what we did at the Polynesian Spa on the sulphur-ridden banks of Lake Rotorua – a highlight of our New Zealand travel itinerary

As the sun sets, we land up, thoroughly refreshed and incredibly hungry, at Eat Streat, Rotorua’s best worst-kept secret where you’ll find all the food in the world under one roof. Need I say more?

The land of the Hobbit..

Hobbiton set New Zealand travel guide
Hobbiton set

Our excitement spins out of control the next day when we watch fantasy come to life at the Hobbiton set in Matamata in the verdant Kaimai ranges.

44 hobbit holes, including the famous Bag End, pale in comparison to what we feel when we actually get to stand inside one of them and say ‘Hey, we are hobbits of the Shire!’.

After listening to astounding details from our friendly guide-turned-barman, we grab drinks at the Green Dragon Inn and snap pictures with a life-size statue of Gandalf before reluctantly heading out.

The South Island Travel Itinerary

After a week of touring North Island, the action moves to South Island when we land at Christchurch one windy afternoon.

An after-hours-walk in Central Christchurch reveals to us the city’s resilience and spirit of rebuilding its life after having been torn apart by earthquakes. Heading out of Christchurch we move towards wilder alpine vistas as we take the road to the small town of Franz Josef on the islands West Coast.

On the way we are taken in by Castle Hill, New Zealand’s stunning answer to Stonehenge and cannot help but stare at the brilliant blue waters of the Haast River.

Our greatest find is the site of the former Aylesbury Train Station outside Christchurch which was completely blown away in a storm in 1976.

As well as a great history spot, you can experience sweeping, vantage-point views of the great Southern Alps from the site of the station .

Arriving at Franz Josef you see remnants of a gold rush past and citizens who cycle to work.

After a laidback two-day stay in Franz Josef where we do nothing but eat, cook and walk around, we are pleasantly surprised when our friendly waitress tells us we’re already 1/15th locals!

The journey to Queenstown is an enthralling ride through Mount Aspiring National Park. We scribble a message on Bruce Bay’s Pile of Rocks, elated to leave behind a little of us in Kiwi country.

We fill our bottles up from the river at Fantail Falls, another great off-the-road find, and even build our own rock cairn, sitting pretty amongst hundreds of others.

We swat at sandflies while reading about New Zealand’s history at Knight’s Point, where the azure waters of the Tasman Sea are almost unbelievable. Just before we hit Queenstown, we catch the views of a lifetime of the summer Otago countryside from Cardrona Pass.

Fantail Falls Otago New Zealand
Rock cairns, Fantail Falls, Otago

Queenstown throbs with energy and the promise of thrill is in the air. Adventure activities in the city are like a rite of passage for those visiting New Zealand.

Despite being acrophobic and in denial, I skydived from 15,000 ft. over Lake Wakatipu with a hunky instructor strapped to my back and experienced the thrill of jumping over the Kawarau river, the site of the world’s first bungy.

Another exhilarating encounter on your New Zealand travel itinerary is the Shotover Jet – one boat, 10-cm shallow river waters, narrow, twisted canyons, great speeds, 360-degree turns and a tagline that reads ‘Can you handle the canyons?’.

Things mellow down the next day as we set out to encounter what legend says is a god’s creation – Milford Sound in Fiordland National Park.

The moody, rain-obsessed Fiordland National Park envelops our senses entirely with its mirror lakes, cloudy realms, glacier-carved mountains and discerning perpetuity.

We fight off sandflies with gusto, encountering fur seals taking a siesta and bottlenose dolphins squealing joyously. On our way out, we even come upon a pair of the impish Kea, the only alpine parrots in the world.

Lake Pukaki, Canterbury New Zealand travel guide
Clouds over Lake Pukaki, Canterbury

On the way to Mount Cook village, our last leg of the journey, the shadows of the clouds on the turquoise waters of Lakes Pukaki and Tekapo is a sight my senses will never let me forget.

Later that rainy night, as I stare at the great Aoraki summit, I feel the natural and the mystical spirit of New Zealand come together. This New Zealand travel itinerary, which is certainly not our last one in this country, has indeed been a privilege.

Malavika Madgula is a freelance writer and coffee-lover well-versed in the art of Kopfkino. Sings non-stop praises about New Zealand, believes in domino theory and is always up to discuss Harry Potter. Her blog can be found here malavika24.wordpress.com.

Written by Michael

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There’s plenty of fun things to do in the hippy city of Flagstaff. The city is nestled in the stunning red rock scenery of northern Arizona and offers activities through both summer and winter.

Flagstaff is at a much higher elevation than Phoenix and Tucson, so has a much greener environment with lots of forests and grasslands.

The area is considerably colder than its fellow Arizonan cities, so you should pack some long sleeves and trousers!

The city is around a 4-hour drive north from Tucson and a 2.5-hour drive North of the state capital, Phoenix.

There’s also plenty of fun things to do in Flagstaff, you just need someone to write about them for you…

Continue reading “5 Fun Things to do in Flagstaff, Arizona”

Written by Michael

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If you like your holidays to be full of adventure, Iceland is the ideal trip for you. It isn’t your average sunbathing, sand and sea, and you’re more likely to have a hot chocolate in your hand than a cocktail, but it will certainly be an experience to remember. Iceland is one of those places you absolutely have to see at least once in a lifetime, and with so much to do there, it’s difficult to narrow down your sightseeing list. So, if you’ve got a short time frame in Iceland, here’s what you need to prioritise.

Continue reading “Iceland Bound? Here's Your Must See List.”

Written by Michael

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Everyone yearns to visit certain bucket list holidays more than others. There’s a certain allure that places a destination in your mind and it never leaves.

You always have that urge to visit those places and dream of the time you will spend exploring the sights. These destinations can be on our minds for years, it’s just down to us to visit them!

Here are my top 5 bucket list destinations, one may raise a few eyebrows!

Continue reading “Check Out My 5 Epic Bucket List Holidays.”

Written by Michael

5min read

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Looking for the best places to Visit in Istanbul?

Of course you are, its a stunning city just waiting to be explored!

Istanbul is located in the perfect place to enjoy a diverse mix of cultures and all the attractions that these cultures provide.

Situated right in the middle of Europe and Asia, the country is a melting pot of huge civilisations.

Imagine being on one continent, and then in an instant, you are transported to another one via a short boat or taxi ride. Its location makes Istanbul a very unique place to visit that very few other destinations can rival.

Continue reading “The Best Places to Visit in Istanbul.”

Written by Michael

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We all love knowing that we’re visiting somewhere that not many people know about. You want to head off the beaten track, find a hidden gem, and go where the locals go. What’s better than doing this while also being immersed in some of America’s Prohibition-era history? Well, if you want to achieve this, then you need to head to one of a number of hidden speakeasy-inspired bars dotted around Chicago. Check out these five speakeasy bars in some of my favorite Chicago neighborhoods that offer that hidden gem feeling along with some of the best cocktails around.

Continue reading “The 5 Best Speakeasies in Chicago and How to Enter Them”

Written by Michael

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 It’s hard not to have heard of Yellowstone National Park. Some may know it for its feared super volcano, others because of its diverse wildlife or perhaps its renowned geothermal features.  We recently went on a camping adventure in the park and want to share with you 5 unmissable sights you must add to your itinerary when visiting.

Continue reading “5 Sights You Absolutely Must See in Yellowstone”

Written by Michael

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pasted image 0 (1)https://pixabay.com/en/panorama-the-cathedral-427997/

Summer might be in full swing, but we’ve still got some time left before the holiday season is over. And this especially the case in Spain. When it comes to travelling and visiting different countries, Spain has it all. This stunning European country offers an incredible slice of culture, delicious food, breathtaking views and an interesting history. Although the coasts can get packed at this time of year, the cities often come alive. So if you’re looking to fit in a last minute trip before the sun dies down, here are five Spanish cities to consider seeing.

Continue reading “5 Spanish Cities You Have To See Before Summer’s Out!”