Thursday, 8 January 2015

Top 10 Travel Moments

I see the last two years as one big time period in my life, from hence forth being known as 'The London Years'. Returning the Canada marks the end of a era for me, albeit a short one, but man was it ever a babe, worthy of reflection and a compilation of a list of the best moments not to be forgotten. From unique experiences to stunning settings, The London Years had it all. 

1. Dinner at the fish market

It was truly continental dinner time as we wandered the narrow, stone streets of Venice. We knew we would be in for a treat with fresh seafood and Prosecco. The outdoor tables were filled with patrons and the banks  lined with people hanging out. The dull din of the chatter and live music in this busy square made me incredibly happy to be part of it all. 

2. Bratislava train station

E and I arrived at the Bratislava train station after a very early morning flight from London Stansted. So far everything had gone smoothly despite our complete lack of comprehension of the language. We had planned on leaving our bags at the station for the day as we explored the Old Town. Based on our understanding of the signs posted and the very large Slovakian man in overalls yelling at us from behind a small opened window at the luggage room, we had between 5:30pm and 5:45pm to collect our things. He grabbed our bags, we handed over our money and received a tiny slip of paper in return. The window slammed shut and curtains were drawn closed. We were either just in time to drop off our luggage or we were never seeing our things again. We headed to the town centre to explore, figuring it was 'future us's' problem now and we were going to enjoy our day.

3. Sunsets from on high

Who doesn't love a rooftop patio? During our trip in Italy, it became a quest to seek them out and enjoy the views of the city while sipping a drink. *background* I went to uni in the city of Guelph, Ontario. The city got it's name from the Royal family at the time of its founding in 1827. A few English friends told me that couldn't be true, after a Google search we discovered that the Guelphs or Guelfs had a history in Florence and today there still stands a medieval tower with a roof top bar attached to the Hotel Torre Guelfa. We arrived at sunset, ordered our drinks and enjoyed the uninterrupted panorama of the city.

4. The "first" annual Christmas Market

Late November 2012, I had only been in England for 3 months and aside from the few people I already knew when I arrived, I didn't have much of a friend base. That is until I was invited along for the annual Christmas Market trip. I would joining my friend and meeting his good friends and some of their good friends on this trip. I didn't know then just how amazing an opportunity this was going to be for me and I am grateful every day to this friend for the introduction. Not only was in introduced to the magic of a real Christmas market, but I meet the nicest group of people who took me into their fold immediately. Even taking great care of me when I caught the delightful Norwalk Virus on the last day of our trip.

5. Lavenham locals

While visiting the Tudor town of Lavenham we went on a pub crawl, which consisted of 3 pubs and a wine bar. While at the White Swan we drank pints by a cozy fire and struck up a conversation with some older locals. It was interesting to talk to people that knew the town intimately after 30 years of residence. I'm generally not one to strike up small talk with a stranger, but do enjoy meeting new people and hearing the stories they have to tell. I know, I'm a conundrum. 

6. Nachtrestaurant Mozartstube

We walked into this empty restaurant near our Vienna hostel and I was hesitant at first, but my rumbling tummy and the lateness of the hour urged me forward requesting a table and confirming they were indeed still open. We discovered this was a night restaurant serving until 5am, having just opened at 9pm. The place was cozy, the waiter flirty friendly, and the food hands-down. the. best.

7. Cream tea in an apple orchard

When I moved to England for my Masters in 2007, I was not really a tea drinker. That quickly changed with elevenses, quick cuppas, and cream teas. Oh the cream teas. While staying in Cambridge this time around E told me she had the perfect place for us to visit. Just outside of the city along a lovely scenic walk was The Orchard, an old literary legends hangout, where one can have a rustic farmers lunch and a delicious cream tea. We lounged in beach chairs among the apple trees, munching on our scones and sipping warming milky tea goodness.

8. Bath Thermal Spa 

When in Bath, England, do as the Romans do (or Victorians if you prefer) and go to the thermal spa. We had our whole Bath trip planned out, however a sever thunderstorm left of scrambling for shelter and a new plan. Eventually the clouds parted and the sun shone, the plan was back on and we hit the thermal spas with the most exquisite roof top pool. The scented saunas and views of rolling hills were like nothing else.

9. The Highland bus tour

Sometimes your time is limited, sometimes our means are meager, sometimes you just want the easy way. Sometimes the only answer is a bus tour. That's how I experienced the Scottish Highlands with my 7 month pregnant friend. It was our best option and the itinerary was perfect for our needs. Dang was it gorgeous and atmospheric.

10. Lido di Venezia

I wanted a beach holiday, the boyf wanted an Italian holiday with friends. We both got our way. Everyone knows that Venice is surrounded by water, but when I told people we were going to the beach in Venice, the response was pretty uniformed, "Venice has a beach?". Yup. The Lido. It's spectacular. The water was shallow, so incredibly warm, and clear. The afternoon was perfect as we sunbathed and napped on the beach. I still giggle when I remember the wandering beer vendor with the exact voice of Kermit the frog, "Beer!Beer! Cold beer!"


  1. It's been a great time. Hope to see you in 2015.

  2. I look forward to making more! Enjoy your last few months in England.

  3. I think visiting all of these lovely places would be very special with someone as beautiful and sweet as you. Just saying.


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