Travel Thursdays: A weekend in Paris

BON JOUR! Image

 

Yes exactly.  Paris = Eiffel Tower!

It was very glamorous at night.  However, in the daytime – it’s rather disappointing.  I’d suggest to see it at night first, otherwise your disappointment might leave a bad taste in your mouth.  And perhaps even a quattro formaggi pizza would not be the cure. 

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Yes – it does not reflect the image often shown in movies. LOL!  

We had gone to Paris for our first weekend being married.  Our weekend – mini honeymoon! What a romantic surprise by my husband!  The perks of living in London is that Europe is just a stone away.  We were unable to go for a lengthy honeymoon like most couples as my husband was still new in his job and leave was a problem!  Oh well – when life throws you lemons – you take them along to Paris and drink lemonade over the weekend! 😉  I was disappointed at the time, but what can we do!

We stayed in Novotel, which worked out really well as it was a 10 minute walk from the Eiffel Tower.  Highly recommend the hotel as you can’t go wrong with Novotel!

Things to do in Paris over 2 days:

  • See the Eiffel tower at NIGHT 
  • Go on the top of the tower (pre-book to avoid having to queue up!) 
  • Take a cruise along Seine River to view all the major sights
  • Go to the Louvre (the actual Mona Lisa is a bit disappointing)
  • Walk at Gallery Lafayette and you might bump into a friend from Singapore like I did (I was beyond stunned when I heard my name being shouted across the mall.  When you have such a unique name – you know its YOU when you hear it!)
  • Stroll around Champs Elysees and learn to pronounce it too!  Quite a challenge!
  • Eat 4 cheese pizza – it’s a good excuse for a cheat cheesy day!!

ImageA Little Cafe opposite the Eiffel Tower!  I just love my cheese. Yum!!  🙂

ImageGallery Lafayette.. Beautiful architecture and many shops!  If you’re going with your husband/boyfriend make sure you’re extra nice to him before… Then you might end up with many gifts 😉 HAHAHA!  

Au Revoir!

xx

B

 

 

Travel Thursdays: Zurich

I absolutely loved Switzerland.  It’s probably my favourite part of Europe simply because of the magical feeling on Mt Titlus (part of the Alps). I’m feeling terribly nostalgic thinking about it!

I stayed in Moveenpick hotel as we got a reasonable deal for this four star hotel.  However, I would not recommend this hotel as accessibility to the city was misrepresented.  We were told the walk to the train from the hotel was 5 minutes and in reality it was 25 minutes.  I’m questionable at the humanly possible speed the staff is able to walk. Very questionable. Other than that the hotel was very comfortable.

Things to do in Zurich:

  1. Day trip to Mt Titlus by a coach and cable car up the mountains.  We were extremely lucky to get a clear sky.  The day trip cost about 80 euros each.  After the mountains, the tour group stopped at Lucerne.  Lucerne was breath taking, a quaint village.  I would love to move there 🙂 ok maybe not, I would get bored after a day or two.  I’m a city kind of person!
  2. Sprungli Cafe (Lindt Choco) – you have to go there on your first day and order any luxemburgli.  I was in love after eating this!! No macaroon can ever compare to the softness and lightness of this amazing textured macaroon. I’d fly there for it 🙂 Ok, so you got the point.  If you only try it on your last day, your heart will be filled with regret as you can’t have it daily during your stay! The hot chocolate is divine too 🙂
  3. Bahnhofstrasse- Main Street -walk the streets like any city!  This street is the most expensive for retail property in Europe (I saw that on wiki btw) There’s a Sprungli here and there’s another one in the airport.  I’ve been to those two!
  4. Cheese fondue – the best cheese you’d ever eat in your life.  We literally stalked the restaurant till they opened. Very eager. Hahahahha!  There’s cheese fondue just about anywhere. You can google it depending on the area you are visiting!

Photos that encapsulate the beauty of Switzerland:

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The view from the cable car on the way up Mount Titlus 🙂

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On the Mountains! Alps is just beautiful…. Took my breath away!

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Ice grotto @ Mt Titlus.  Loved the colored lights…

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Lucerne!  Beautiful 🙂

These are my main recommendations for you guys when you travel to Zurich! 🙂
xx

Travel Thursdays: Monsoon in Kerela

It’s Travel Thursdays and I’ve decided to blog on old travels etc – just because I haven’t got new exciting travels to blog about.  We are saving for it! 🙂  Kerela is known to be the most beautiful during monsoon season – frankly I was skeptical as to why this was so.  After going during this season I can safely say it is a paradise for PHOTOGRAPHY but that is about it.  I like going out, being on the move without an umbrella and my feet soaked.  So it’s all about perspective I guess!

Tips on where to stay:

  • Marriott Kochi Hotel– simply because you can’t go wrong with a five star in a country which is relatively cheap to your currency!  Our stay a night was equivalent to a 3 star in London or a BnB!  We had a buffet breakfast each morning.  The spread was fantastic.  Hot indian breakfast was made fresh 🙂  For those of you who are not accustomed to indian food – there was continental and english breakfast too.  But I always say in India do as the Indians do!  OK so I say that in every country!  Why not try to enjoy the country locally?  We go there for a different anthropological feel so we might as well enjoy it!
  • Taj Hotel – We stayed here for a night.  It’s much pricer that’s why just a night!  The style of the hotel was rather Maharaja-Type.  That translates into the olden Indian Kingdom Type of Hotels.  The architecture was amazing.  The food was pretty immaculate too!  Another advantage was that there was a complimentary boat trip around the Arabian Sea to see the Chinese Fishing Nets.

FYI – The floods were shocking!!!  One night a road we went by was completely flooded that our car came to a stop.  The driver sent his son outside to look for an alternate route.  The water was up to an average man’s knee.  Fortunately, we weren’t stranded for long.  We also passed by random villagers who were fishing with their hands in the floods and witnessed a big catch.  A man was flapping around the huge fish!

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This picture shows the minor floods in the daytime.

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My favourite local Kerela food – the Kerela Prata!  It’s a flour based bread that you dip in curry.  It costs about 5 Rupees which is about 5 pence!!  OMG.  SO CHEAP.  Always go to a country where your currency is king! 😉

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Indian Masala Tea that is being ‘pulled’ by the man.  Some countries call this “pulling-tea”.  It’s amazing how they do this.  If it were me I’d end up burning myself!  I was in awe.  We actually let ourselves in the kitchen and asked him if we could take a photo.  I can’t speak the language as this is South India and I know Hindi and Punjabi which are both North Indian Languages.  Luckily, he knew a bit of english 🙂

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TAJ HOTEL: The hotel swimming pool which looks like an infinity pool.  The sea the hotel overlooks is the Arabian Sea.  It was beautiful!  I actually feel this picture does not do justice to the place.

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The Chinese Fishing Nets.  Apparently Chinese people introduced the method of fishing to people in Kerela.  I saw this from the complimentary boat ride 🙂

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Sunset view of the Arabian Sea.  It was simply breath-taking!  🙂

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The hotel had south-indian cultural dance performances which were interesting to watch.  We watched for a bit but didn’t really understand what was going on.

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My happy feet!!  There was a really nice spa where I indulged in a relaxing pedicure.  I chose a bright color to cheer myself up from the perpetual rain.  But I guess that’s what monsoon is about!  😉

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The morning buffet range was wonderful.  These were the desserts!  🙂

Must-see shopping mall:

  • Lulu Mall – it has recently opened and has major brand names and also has designer indian wear.  I picked up outfits to wear for upcoming weddings!

Enjoyed my trip there as it was different from what I’m used to for a holiday.  It also really made me appreciate the devloped lifestyle that we lead and often take for granted.

xx

B

B’s Day Trip to Brighton

Hello everyone!  i’n going to be blogging a bit more than my usual to compensate for my absence.  So even if I was not missed – let’s just pretend I was 🙂 HAHA!

Last weekend I went to Brighton for the second time and it was lovely. When I first went there I was a bit taken aback by the lack of sand  on the beach.  I’m more used to Australian Beaches (Manly Beach, Bondi Beach, Gold Coast etc) where your foot just sinks in the soft sand.  However, never seeing a pebbly beach before I was intrigued.

This made me return there 🙂

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I absolutely love beaches – just sitting and watching the swash and backwash of waves gives me a sense of peace.  The concept of water merging with water and forming an indistinguishable embodiment of water is intriguing.  It draws a parralel to humanity – we are all the same, yet we aren’t.  We merge into one light at the end (that’s what I believe).  I wasn’t planning to get philosophical there 😉  But yet I absolutely love sitting in beaches.  This one was a bit different as it did HURT.

TIPS FOR BRIGHTON BEACH:

  1. Take a comfy picnic mat – as stones can be rather pokey.
  2. Take a pack of playing cards to play (just because we did that) haha!
  3. Eat yummy vegetarian food in Pompoko (Japanese restaurant!)  A great find 🙂
  4. Watch the sun set and take silhouette pictures – just because they come out so artistic.
  5. If taking a car, park after 5pm as it’s a flat rate of 5 pounds.

Here are some pictures of our trip:

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The yummy vegetarian food in Brighton deserves a separate caption

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(Vegetarian Prawns:  Basically crispy tofu with veggies in the middle)

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Tofu Sesame Don 🙂

The last time I went to Brighton we couldn’t find anything vegetarian besides pizza, so this was really a refreshing option for vegetarians.

Brighton is worth a day trip for visitors in London 🙂

xx

B

Travel Thursdays: B’s Travels!

Hello there!  Thought I’d make a travel index of places I’ve blogged about so far.  I’ve yet to blog about so many other countries that I’ve got the opportunity to explore… 🙂

TRAVEL INDEX

Asia:

Thailand – Hua Hin

Singapore

India – Kerela

Europe:

Barcelona

Bratislava

Brussels

Copenhagen

Dublin

Paris

Vienna

Zurich

UK:

Bicester Village + Oxford

Brighton

Cambridge

London

One of my favourite quotes of all times (I’ve definitely blogged about it before)

“Like all great travellers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen.” – Benjamin Disraeli