Travel

oh you know, just here, there and everywhere

5 days in Seattle, USA

I WENT TO SEATTLE

SPOILER ALERT: I FRICKIN’ LOVED IT

As you can see above, I recently went on a trip to Seattle.

I’d only been to NYC once for work purposes, so I was really excited to explore for myself! We also went to Canada, so that will be my next post as I feel like I have too many pictures as it is!

I’ll apologise that my pictures are not blogger queen standard, they’re not me in a floaty dress on a beautiful beach, or me looking cute eating crab or whatever. This is what I got from my trip when I wasn’t too busy making memories!

Here’s (a condensed) five things I loved about Seattle, and would definitely suggest you check out if you get a chance!

Pike Place Market

This place has a lot of hype, and it lived up to it for sure. The best part of waking up in Seattle was being able to walk around the market every morning! The vibe is electric, and you don’t need to purchase anything to have a good time.

Whilst walking through my nose was filled with scents of beautiful fresh flowers, and I caught a fish throwing show (weird, I know!) and saw countless adorable furry-legged friends. It honestly is the best way to start your day.

We also stopped at Etta’s, which was known for serving up some damn good sea eats, I went for oysters because they are AMAZING and Nat decided to try some salmon. Obviously it was mind blowing, I don’t think i’ve ever had such fresh fish. They actually serve the fish they catch THAT DAY which is so cool.

In Pike Place, you’ll also come across the famous Gum Wall! It was incredible and disgusting all at the same time, so many people were taking selfies and it felt weird not to? I’m still debating starting one on my kitchen wall, because art. P.S I didn’t actually lick the wall, though I have regrets…

Veggie Grill

Lord have Mercy, I have never had better veggie food than Veggie Grill.

Also sorry for how awful this picture is, I hadn’t eaten in over a day and I had the shakes I was so damn excited. My internet parents (Jenna & Julien) spoke often about how amazing Veggie Grill is, and before we got to Seattle I checked whether they were lucky enough to be graced with such delectable beauty. Obviously they were, and we ate here around 3 times over the 5 days. NO RAGRETS. These are two different VEGAN burgers, we split it to taste both because why the hell not? Beyond Meat needs to get to the UK ASAP cos I can’t live without it now.

The Pink Door

This was a place that often came up when searching places to eat in Seattle. It’s incredibly popular, I actually wasn’t able to book in before we got to Seattle which I was gutted about. Luck struck us in the butt, and when we walked past to see if there was availability we got a table!

The Pink Door has incredible cabaret and burlesque acts, giving you an extra dynamic when it comes to dinner. We watched an incredible trapeze artist after the most exquisite bowl of pasta, I would definitely recommend. It looks incredibly secretive, so allow time to find it!

Kerry Park

So I would definitely recommend getting a bus to Kerry Park, especially if you’re based in Downtown and it’s 20 odd degrees. I felt like I was going to fall backwards hiking up the hills, and I’m a lazy git too so I was just moaning and sweating the whole way. But it is definitely a must do. Silly me thought Kerry Park was a huge green area, but it’s actually just a sightseeing point!

Rocco’s

We stumbled across Rocco’s when walking back from Kerry Park; delirious, tired and MARVIN. We couldn’t use our internet much out there, so we felt a bit lost as there was so many choices for food! We popped into Rocco’s and ordered a pizza, seeing it was 20 inches we just decided we would split it (and we were able to choose 2 different halfs, sick). I didn’t think too much about the size to be honest, that was until it reached the table…

THIS THING WAS HUGE!!

We were starving, but we knew there was no chance of this getting eaten. Pretty sure it lasted us 2 days, and we didn’t eat dinner that night! We both managed 2 slices each, but my oh my was is delicious. Why is food so much better in America? I would be the size of a blimp if I lived there.

The picture below shows the size of one slice on a plate, IT’S MAD.

SoOoOo that was a very condensed summary of my trip to Seattle, I absolutely adored it. Something I didn’t expect was the amount of eccentric people we came across. Throughout our 10 days, we had people shouting and screaming in the streets, someone told us (or the couple next to us) to shut the fuck up AND I saw a guy with his johnson out, wiping his bum with a quilt.

So yeah. I CAN’T WAIT TO GO BACK!

But in all seriousness, this trip was incredible. I had no idea what to expect and exceeded the limited expectations I had tenfold, and soon enough I’ll have a post all about my experience of Vancouver too, so don’t forget to check back for that!

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Holidaying with Holiday Gems*

“This year is all about travelling my friend” – Tiffany Frost (2018)

Happy Monday blog fam! How are you? Good? I’m glad, cos I’m going to be talking about allllll things travel in todays post.

I decided that this year would be all about travelling for me. I wanted to go travelling for 6 months, but after deciding to start my own company, it just wasn’t feasible. Instead I decided to plan in lots of little trips to get me through!

One site that I’ve used that not many have heard of is holidaygems.co.uk, I think Holiday Gems is great because it caters for a lot of people. My family tend to travel in a heard of 6 or more, so being able to look at different hotels and villas is IDEAL.

When my family travel, we are also accompanied by my beautiful little 6″3 autistic brother Ben. A lot of the time, we need to check perimeters to make sure he’s safe. When booking at Holiday Gems, the customer service was spot on. They were very accommodating to Ben, what we needed and gave us all the information we needed about our hotels and even found out additional info for peace of mind.

But it’s not all about how well we were treated (though it definitely bloody helped) but the places they have on offer are INCREDIBLE. So here’s a few places on my wish-list, because as I said before. This year is alllll about travelling.

Mediterranean Palace Hotel – Tenerife

source: holidaygems.co.uk

How stunning is this hotel?! I absolutely loved Tenerife, and not just because I got the best tan in my whole existence, but I just loved the white sands and blue sea. Original, I know. If you’ve never been before. I would definitely recommend!

Monte Mar Palace Hotel – Madeira

source: holidaygems.co.uk

I’m a sucker for any hotel that’s near the beach, when you’re floating in the pool looking out over to the watery abyss. This dreamy little place is a bargain too – for only £349pp for a week in June, I want to book my flights now!

Atlantis The Palm – Dubai

source: holidaygems.co.uk

So this wouldn’t be a wish-list if I didn’t add a hotel that is completely out of my price range, would it? This beautiful hotel is a 5 star luxury experience, it has everything from fish swimming around in the walls in your room to a spa within walking distance. Atlantis is an experience of a lifetime. Plus who could turn town access to a private beach? A girl can dream.

Also does anyone else love that they have a section on their site where you can book flights for tomorrow? because I don’t know one person that wouldn’t benefit for a flight to a hot country tomorrow. The possibilities are endless.

So any who, if you’re looking for a low cost holiday with a company that always puts you first, i’d check out their site.

 

This is a sponsored post for holidaygems.co.uk, all words are my own unless specified. I only write sponsored content about products/websites I am able to write my own experiences about.
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delicious foods in far away places

Happy hump-day pals!

I hope you’re all having a productive week, or planning summer holidays and adding bikinis to your ASOS wish list, COS SAME. The recent burst of summer has really given me itchy feet, especially as it left as quick as it came *sob*

It got me thinking about some of the best trips I’ve ever taken, and everything I shovelled into my mouth whilst I was there… Ah… Better times. So I thought I’d share with you some of my favourite locations I’ve and some of my favourite foods I had whilst I was there!

 

SPAIN

Spain is well known for foods such as tapas, paella, gazpacho, patatas bravas and many more! I love tomato-based dishes and my most favourites have been from Spain.

(L-R) Atreactif, C_B_C_K, Chris Clift

According to Travel Away, “You are not allowed to visit Spain without experiencing the famous tapas! It’s like visiting Paris without seeing the Tour Eiffel, or like exploring Italy without having a proper espresso.

I definitely agree, tapas is is one of the best styles of meals I’ve ever had because I love to try everything. But my favourite dish of all has to be paella, I will never order it in any other country.

I love paella because I love huge portions of food, who doesn’t? But the plates look incredible, and the seafood is incredibly fresh and I could eat that alone! Rice is a really filling dish too, and there’s nothing worse than still feeling hungry after your main, this is a common problem of mine…

 

INDONESIA

Gado Gado – “Traditional Indonesian salad consisting of water spinach, bean sprout, string beans, cucumber, tofu, tempeh, hard-boiled egg and lontong (rice cakes). All combined in a mildy-spiced peanut sauce”

(L-R) Busy Bees Kitchen, Brook Lee Naturopathy, Veggie Keto Girl

Unfortunately I broke my phone when on my travels around Indonesia, otherwise I would have snapped until my food went cold! But it is a place that has stolen my heart, and I am dying to return.

I struggled a little when I was there due to JUST transitioning to pescetarian, not because they didn’t have great options but because I wanted to try all the incredible meats!

A dish I did put my trust in was gado gado. I sometimes struggle to eat anything heavy when in a  hot country so this was perfect, the peanut sauce was honestly heavenly. I very often grabbed veggie street rice too with peas, onions and carrots for a bargain of £1 or less.
How can you not love the Gili T street market?

I also had many buddha bowls for breakfast which were SO GOOD AND SO CHEAP. I’m sure they were only around £1/£1.50? They were huge! I miss you Gili T.

 

ITALY

Whenever I think of Italy, I think of pizza. Delicious, fresh, cheese-less pizza. Nothing has ever compared to the italian dishes I have experienced in Lucca, so much so that I return every single year. The pizza dough is AMAZING, paired with a red wine and I am in heaven. I always have veggie pizza with artichokes and mushrooms AND I WISH I WAS THERE RIGHT NOW.

Images taken by me

Something that being lactose intolerant couldn’t hold me back from was the gelato. Who could not have an ice cream from an award winning city? Not me that’s for sure. Make sure you check our Barga next time you’re near, it’s a beautiful little town in Italy situated near the Garfagnana which is somewhere I absolutely love to stay. The mountainous views are worth the trip alone.

My diet consisted of pasta, pizza and all the ice-cream I could manage, but thanks to all the beautiful sights and walking I did non of it stuck to me (THANK GOD!).

I love everything about Italy, it’s culture, the views, the language, the food… but one thing I do disagree with is the negativity towards mixing cheese and fish together, it is a match made in heaven to me!

 

Now for somewhere I definitely need to go…

 

DUBAI

I know I would love a Dubai luxury holiday, what I think intrigues me the most is that you can experience all types of holidays in one place. Wanna chill on a beautiful beach? You’re covered. Love walking around on a city break? Dubai got you. Wanna go all SATC 2 and chill in the desert? Get on your camel girl.

Photos by Kathryn Reynolds IG: @krrr14

But what sort of food does Dubai have?

Now I will say the only way I want to interact with a camel is riding one, but apparently they eat camel in Dubai?! I’ll pass on that, but the street food looks sensational. If you’re looking for pork you’ll be disappointed, but don’t fret! Dubai has plenty of seafood, chicken, beef and lamb to offer.

(L-R) Rubbish Eat Rubbish Grow, Maya Dubai, Common Grounds

What I like about Dubai is that you can try a vast array of cuisine. Many restaurants in the region tend to take inspiration from Middle Eastern and Asian cuisine, meaning that you can trying dishes varying from Indian to Korean! I love having plenty of options when I’m away, especially as I love to try foods I’ve not experienced before.

I also heard that you can haggle your food prices?! I LOVE THAT. That’s not just with street food, but with restaurants too! I am such a bargain hunter, and nothing makes food taste nicer than a low price label, right?

One thing I wish I could try is Shawarma (pictured on the left). It’s a wrap containing a spicy meat teamed with mint sauce, and is incredibly cheap and found on the streets. Here’s hoping by the time I go they have one with crispy tofu! (a girl can dream…)

 

Where do you want to visit next? I need more holiday ideas!

This is a sponsored post. All wording and imagery was written and taken by me unless stated otherwise.
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why you need to go to Kosice, Slovakia

Happy Friday, pals!

 

If you follow me on Instagram, you would have seen that recently Izzy and I took a wonderful trip to Kosice, Slovakia. Never heard of it? Neither had I, but after a quick Google images binge we decided to take the leap and book ourselves some flights!


If you had never heard of it, why did you go?

Good question inner monologue.

We decided to go because it was cheap, and it would be a new adventure for the both of us.
I decided this year that I wanted to try to go to places I’d never been before, and having never heard of it seemed all the more exciting! More importantly it was INCREDIBLY CHEAP, and with my new freelance adventure I certainly wasn’t jetting off to the Maldives any time soon.

So a little bit of info about Kosice (it’s actually pronounced Ko-sheet-ser which I didn’t master until our last day). It was actually named a European Capital of Culture in 2013 (together with Marseille), and they host a International Peace Marathon every year since 1924 making it the 3rd oldest marathon in the world(!) and the oldest in Europe. They also have oldest city coat-of-arms in Europe. The angel with knights armour has represented Košice since 1369! This little city is packing a lot of history.

When people think of Slovakia they think of Bratislava, which has higher restaurant costs due to being a capital. The real values are in the lesser-visited but beautiful eastern part of the country, and this is why we thought HELL YES LET’S GO.

The food is incredible

Izzy and I ordered 2 meals pretty much everywhere we went, how can you not? I had a main pasta dish, a pizza and a dessert for less than $15! It’s no wonder my jeans didn’t fit when I got home…

We also decided to treat ourselves to a fancier restaurant, mainly because I can’t afford to do that at home! After having 2 starters, 2 mains and a couple glasses of red I think the bill came to around $50 for both. The food standard was impeccable, even a cheapskate like me couldn’t grumble at that!

What I didn’t expect is how many Italian restaurants there would be?! But again, not complaining. You know how much your girl loves pizza and carbs in general.

The views/architecture are inspiring

I’m a sucker for a good cathedral, isn’t everyone? I love walking around churches and streets everywhere I go. I was honestly stunned by the beautiful St Elisabeth Cathedral, it’s on a main road, smack bang in the centre and the interior left me SHOOK.

I could only grab a few photos as I felt I was getting in the way of people and their prayers, but this is something you most definitely have to visit if you go!

Spiš Castle

We didn’t have too long to explore Kosice, but we knew we wanted to go visit Spiš Castle, which has some breathtaking views. We didn’t really know what to expect, but we definitely didn’t think it would be an hour up-hill hike!

Izzy was sporting some heels but that girl still hiked like her life depended on it! Therefore I would recommend hiring a car, it takes 10 minutes to get up the castle if you do, and there’s so many surrounding areas such as High-Tatras that you can get to my car, which is somewhere I will 100% be visiting.

Cheap adorable cafes

I loved every place we grabbed breakfast, lunch, coffees, but this one was the most loveliest place. It’s called Pogo Cafe and it has the best choice in coffees, sweet treats and brunch. It was amazing that I didn’t have to worry about being dairy free, because they had so many options! I can’t remember how much exactly a hazelnut almond latte was, but I remember thinking they had got it wrong! Definitely a must if you’re in the area.

So overall I had an amazing trip, with incredible food and half decent company (jokes love you Izzy). I would highly recommend checking out the areas of Slovakia that aren’t as touristy, after reading many travel posts about where to go in Slovakia, Kosice came up top. I understand why the locals love it so much, and can’t wait to return in the summer!

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new york city

new york city

I WENT TO NEW YORK!

Did you?

Hell yeah I did!

I was lucky enough to be asked by my amazing work place to photograph students on their epic journey through NYC, capturing their thoughts and emotions whilst going on this life-changing trip.

It was an honour to be asked (and not just because it was all paid for), because I never thought I would be able to afford to go to New York myself. I did a lot of work out there, so I didn’t get too much free time to explore the wonders of the city that never sleeps… but I will fill you in on what I love about what I saw of NYC!

#1 The well groomed dogs of New York

I cannot tell you how many beautiful dogs I saw in New York, but I made sure to point out every single one of them to my colleagues… I’m sure they found it endearing. I am a huge fan of The Dogist and it felt so amazing to be surrounded by the potential models on 5th/6th avenue <3

#2 They get some good ass snow

So I was there from the 3rd – 10th January and the weather ranged from 8 degrees to -10 degrees C (WOT!). Luckily I packed for everything because I am always so cold. I’m so thankful that my mama got me the best coat ever from Urban Outfitters and thermals for Christmas! Although, I was not thankful that I was wearing my new Jordan’s that day… My feet were ready to drop off!

#3 Oh my god the food

As a pescatarian, I was worried that I might struggle with meals, but I had everything ranging from a high class sushi dinner to a salmon roll in a Canadian bar. I miss the food every day and just writing about it is genuinely making my mouth water! This was fried Country Catfish with tartare sauce, corn bread, coleslaw and green beans. Oh how I miss you Brother Jimmy’s BBQ!

#4 NBA

I’m a little shocked at myself that this is so far down the list! I know this isn’t strictly NYC rather than the entire USA, but I have been a massive basketball fan ever since I started playing at the age of 11. I’ve always wanted to watch a game and I literally had tears in my eyes at my first Knicks game. It was the most surreal, insane experience that I couldn’t put a price on ($59, cha-ching) and I can’t wait to go back again. It was a shame the Knicks lost though, but I was more than happy to see Anthony Davis dive head first into the crowd!

#5 The architecture

I don’t know if you know this but like, the buildings in America are REALLY big… They’re also stunning. I found myself stopping multiple times in the middle of my route to take it all in, and every conversation I observed felt like it was from a film because of the scenery. I was especially taken aback by the Statue of Liberty (I mean who isn’t) and looking at the Woolworth’s building, which was once the tallest building in New York. It’s pretty tiny now compared!
This trip was hectic to say the least, it was my first time in the US and I can’t wait to get back and explore some more. I feel pretty emotional looking at all my pictures, and I didn’t get any outfit pictures in front of a yellow cab! That’s probably what hurts the most…

 

 

 

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