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A Beautiful Breakfast at Bloom, Luxembourg City

Granola, yoghurt and fresh fruit in a bowl

Luxembourg is small. It's easily forgotten, sandwiched in between its shiny neighbours of France, Belgium and Germany, so I didn't expect all that much. I've never heard of specific cuisine from the country, but after some surprisingly delicious finds recently in Romania, I knew I'd find something. A short search on Instagram showed up Bloom; a small cafe a short walk from my hotel and on the outskirts of the main city.

The Best Places to Eat in Bucharest, Romania

Navy coffee machine in The Urbanist, Bucharest

Romania isn't really known as a culinary destination, an although I loved my recent trip to Bucharest, the food on offer wasn't necessarily the main highlight. That being said, we find some great little places in the city's Old Town which were delicious AND a total bargain.

Seven Things to Expect From a Trip to Bucharest, Romania

Tram running through Bucharest

For someone who travels a lot, my geography is pretty damn bad. It is a pretty frequent occurrence for me to get on a plane and not really know where in the world I'm going. Don't get me wrong, I'll know what I want to eat and what I want to see when I'm there, I just don't really know which part of the globe I'm jetting off to.

How to Spend a Long Weekend in Dublin

Temple bar pubs Dublin

I've realised recently that there's a lot of places close to home that I've yet to visit. I've only been to Italy for a wedding and went to Paris in 2014 after everyone kept seeming horrified that I'd never been. My first trip to Ireland last year didn't take in the capital city of Dublin, but as my favourite cousin moved there last March, it was the perfect excuse to go and explore.

Cake and Hot Chocolate at Cafe Einstein, Berlin

plate of cakes and mugs of hot chocolate

Winter is magical in Europe. I mean, it's cold, but it's pretty. On my trip to Berlin I was hell bent on finding hot chocolate, mulled wine and anything else that would keep me toasty warm from the inside. After landing mid-afternoon, we set out for a snack and as luck would have it, we were staying a stone's throw from Cafe Einstein.

A Long Weekend in Berlin

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Each year, my best friend comes back from Hong Kong for Christmas. To make the most of being in Europe (and to get cheaper flights), she tends to go back in January via a European city, joined by me and her big sister. In 2014 we did Paris and this year we decided to spend New Year's Eve in Berlin, for gluhwein, bratwurst and wanderings in the freezing cold.

Fishing With the Locals in Glengarriff, Ireland

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If there's one stereotype I'd heard about the Irish which turned out to be completely true, it's that they are unbelievably friendly. During our road trip, conversation with locals flowed as easily as the Guinness - in pubs, hotels, cafes, we received tip-offs, recommendations and warm welcomes from everyone we met.

Ireland Road Trip: Driving the West Coast

driving holidays ireland

The thing that really makes a driving holiday in Ireland is the stunning coast line. Around every corner you're hit with a new view, totally different from the last. Sometimes you see lush greenery, other times you get jagged, hard rock faces - all overlooking crashing waves that hide the small hope of seeing a visiting whale or seal.

Ireland Road Trip: Driving to Clonakilty

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We knew that once we left Cork we just wanted to find the sea. We wanted to take coastal driving routes and see little villages and towns that we'd never heard of before, and once you're a few kilometres down the road that's exactly what you find. We knew we wanted to get to Clonakilty for our next B&B, but we had all day to get there so we headed up, up, up some steep roads to get a real sense of why Ireland is known as the Emerald Isle.

Ireland Road Trip: Kissing the Blarney Stone

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I wasn't that bothered about visiting Blarney Castle after reading a few reviews that said it was overcrowded, overhyped and overpriced. But it was raining and we needed somewhere to go that wasn't a million miles from Cork where we were still based, so we made our way there praying that the weather would improve.

Ireland Road Trip: Kinsale and Cobh

ireland driving holiday

One quiet weekday evening, my boyfriend and I were watching Calvary on Netflix. The film is a black comedy set in rural Ireland which got us thinking, why not drive around the Emerald Isle for our next holiday? So, a few week's later we flew into Cork, hired a car and roughly planned a route along the south-west coast to see some rugged coastlines. We stayed in Cork for three nights, using it a our base to explore some of the little towns and villages nearby.

36 Hours in Bergen

what to do in bergen

Arriving into Bergen after a 6.5hr train journey from Oslo was quite the relief. Although our trip had been amazing, it was nice to be back out in the crisp summer Norwegian air, and Bergen instantly wooed us with its charm. Cobbled streets, wooden houses and a feel of true rustic Scandinavia separates it from the modern and sleek aesthetic of Oslo.

Travelling from Oslo to Bergen by Train

oslo bergen train norway

After a few days in Oslo, we boarded a train to Bergen to see Norway's countryside by rail. The journey was 6.5 hours but it's been voted one of the most scenic rail routes in the world. A bit of research informed us to pay about £15 extra to sit in Komfort class which was well worth the money. We had a ton of leg room, less people in our carriage and free tea and coffee for the duration. I booked our tickets online as paying in advance was cheaper, and chose our seats based on the wise words of TripAdvisor: forward facing and on the left hand side.

What I Ate in Norway

food blogger recommendations norway

After my recent visit to Norway I know two things for sure:
1) It is the one of the most beautiful places I've ever been to
2) It is the most expensive place I've ever been to

We were hitting up places that were one or two £ signs in the guide book but would still be paying around £35 each for dinner, and that's exclusing alcohol.

36 Hours in Oslo

long weekend in oslo

When people asked where I was going on my summer holiday this year, every single person looked totally baffled when I told them I was off to Norway. The reason? Simple that I haven't been there before, and that seemed as good a reason as any. After a seven hour flight delay, we eventually arrived and once we'd found our Air BnB in the lovely Frogner district, we headed out to start exploring.

A Wedding in Tuscany

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I consider myself pretty well travelled. Last year I went to Australia, Hong Kong, Beijing, Paris and Frankfurt, so I've managed to clock up quite a few air miles. However, until recently, I'd never been to Italy. Considering how much I love food this normally takes people by surprise, so I was very excited to not only visit Tuscany for the new adventure but more importantly to be a bridesmaid at the wedding of my oldest friend.

Nine Things to Know When Visiting Barcelona

barcelona travel blog

One thing to remember if you're attending a hen party abroad: it's not a holiday. When you get a group of women together who don't all know each other, you will never please everyone. That's why I didn't plan much for my recent trip to the Catalan capital - I was ready to go with flow, especially as I've been there before. We stayed in a fantastic apartment on Passeig de Gracia. It slept eight of us easily, was a short walk to Sagrada Familia and La Rambla, and had buses connecting the whole city right outside, plus the owner, Miguel, was so lovely and extremely helpful. Here's a few tips for those of you planning a trip soon

What I Ate in Prague

beer taster trayIf you're looking for a culinary taste bud explosion, then Prague maybe isn't the place to go. We certainly didn't eat badly on our trip, but the local cuisines are pretty limited in their offering, consisting predominantly of cuts of pork, sauerkraut and potatoes. We mainly stuck to traditional Czech food where we could and tried most of the expected dishes.

A Weekend in Prague

travel blog prague

Prague is one of those cities, like Paris, where Brits go for a 'long weekend'. Unlike Paris, however, there aren't many people who can tell you what there is to see there. It's known for being picturesque, and I knew before I went that there is a river running through with a famous bridge over it, but that was pretty much it. In the three days I was there, I found out that Prague has an incredibly rich and fascinating history, and the city was truly brought to life for me through the wonderful walking tours we went on.

prague tourist

hussites statue prague

prague street architecture

I've written many times before about how I love to explore a new place by foot, and this is the case whether I wander off by myself, or I go on a tour. I've done Sandeman tours in other European cities before and they almost seem too good to be true as they are completely free! Of course, you're encouraged to give a tip at the end, and they're always worth it. We met our tour guide John Paul at 10.45am and we stayed with him for three hours as we walked around the Old Town and the Jewish District, learning about all the beautiful buildings we were surrounded by and given a whistlestop tour of Prague's history, including the brutal background of the Hussites (one of the first branches of Protestantism) which involved their founder being burnt alive. Pretty grim. Did you know that the word 'bohemian' comes from Prague too? It's first name was Bohemia, and when the residents were all made to flee after the Thirty Years War, their ways of street theatre, absinthe drinking and painting as they travelled from country to country became known as the 'bohemian lifestyle'. Keep that one in your back pocket for a pub quiz!

woman in hat

close up of astronomical clock prague

prague astronomical clock

maleficent castle prague

mozart theatre prague

The architecture is staggering; not from its height, but from the intricate detail everywhere. The famous Astronomical Clock is truly beautiful, though how you tell the time from it is beyond me! Known as the City of 1000 Spires, despite being the second most atheist country in Europe, it's not difficult to see how Walt Disney found inspiration for fairytale constructions like Maleficent's castle. And he's not the only famous person to be in awe of Prague; Kafka lived and worked there, and Mozart loved the people of the city so much that he held the premiere of Don Giovanni at a theatre there, which is now the last place that he played to still be in existence. Prague has also been the foundations for myth and legend, with the story of the Gollum originating from the attic of the Old New Synagogue in the Jewish District.

czech soldiers at prague castle

czech war memorial

prague castle

example of sgraffito
Following on from the free tour, we decided to pay for the afternoon tour of Prague Castle and the surrounding areas. It was the equivalent of about £10 and we were so enamoured by the previous tour that we knew it would be worth it. Our guide Michael met us by the Rudolfinum music hall and pointed out some of the main sites including the Charles Bridge before we caught a tram up the hill to the castle.

The castle grounds is still the home of the Czech president and prime minister, as well as the senate. It is protected around the perimeter by soldiers decked out in uniforms designed by the costume designer for the Oscar winning Amadeus, carrying bayonets, and is perched on the top of a hill overlooking the city and its surroundings. The architecture again was completely stunning and we were shown an incredible example of sgraffito - a type of design where patterns are literally scratched into the brickwork giving a textured appearance that feels like looking at a Magic Eye picture.

st vitus cathedral prague

st vitus cathedral inside

st vitus stained glass windows

gargoyle st vitus cathedral

small blue house

houses on golden lane prague

The magnificent St Vitus Cathedral is the fifth largest in Europe and its stained glass windows are the most incredible I've ever seen. Designed by famous Prague artist, Mucha, they are in his classic art noveau style and were vivid, detailed and a tad creepy, but I was fascinated by them. Nearby is Golden Lane where Franz Kafka lived with his sister for a few years, and is now an adorable, colourful narrow street, perfect for some tourist photos.

On our own time, we wandered down to the Charles Bridge which has huge looming statues on each side, depicting various parts of Czech history or saints and other religious figures. The view from each side is completely gorgeous with towers, winding streets and petite houses by the river that I could've looked at for days (if it wasn't so bloody cold that is). Prague is one of those places where you take hundreds of photos of buildings, just because. It is also incredibly cheap, and perfect for a quick trip away with a flight time from Heathrow of only two hours. Despite the weather, it really is a beautiful city, and I'll definitely be going back to see a little further afield.

tower east side charles bridge

view from charles bridge prague

charles bridge prague

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What I Ate in Paris

pierre herme chocolate foie gras macaroon

Food is such an integral part of any trip I make; I often plan where I'm going to eat before I decide what tourist attractions I'll take in. Of course, I've heard much about the food in France, but as cheese, chocolate and red wine are all readily available in England, I never really thought much of it. But the stereotypes are there for a reason and I embraced them on my trip to Paris before Christmas. 
As of 20th November 2014, any products marked with an asterisk (*) have been provided as a sample for unbiased review