Sunday, 26 April 2015

My Favourite Travel Vloggers

I don't know what it is about this time of year, but this is the season when the travel bug really starts to bite me. As soon as Spring appears, I start day dreaming about all the places I could go and remembering all the ones I've visited in the past. This month my wanderlust has only been made worse by my recent discovery of travel vloggers on youtube. These vloggers go anywhere and everywhere and capture the world in beautiful detail. I can't stop watching their videos and so I thought I'd share my favourites with you, so that you can armchair travel and marvel at the World as well:

1. Hey Nadine

What I like about Hey Nadine:

Hey Nadine has been to 5 continents and over 40 countries [I'm envious of the number of countries she's been to, and I'm working on catching up], so even though she's only in her mid twenties she's a very experienced traveller. Her videos reflect the way that a lot of young people like to travel - for instance Nadine often travels on organized tours with the tour operator Contiki, who specialize in adventure travel for 18 to 35s. As a result of this, Nadine can  often be seen doing interesting outdoor activities such as zorbing, zip-lining down a mountain or deep sea diving, which makes for fun viewing. I really love her can do attitude and enthusiasm, and her openness to trying new things - she's always the first in her group to eat unusual food for instance. Her travel videos are contemporary, colourful, and never boring, and often have great music accompanying them like in the one above. She makes me want to get on a plane. Now.

2. Sonia's Travels

What I like about Sonia's Travels

Sonia is incredibly practical about travel, and I love practical people [because I like to think that's one of my best traits]. If you need travel advice about anything [and I mean anything] from how to pack to how to save money on flights then Sonia should be your go to person. I also like the fact that Sonia can speak five languages [she really gets involved with the locals when she travels] and the fact that she always makes the effort to learn about a new place. Sonia's videos flow at a slower pace, and as such, they really give viewers a sense of what it feels like to be there.

3. The Travel Muse

What I like about The Travel Muse

Like Sonia, The Travel Muse is very practical and she offers great tips - for instance, I particularly like her guide on how to pack for the tropics and her guide on the best places to find Asian food in L.A. Each video really seems to provide an insight into the local way of life and they look really professional. Having said that though, the travel muse doesn't sugarcoat what life is like on the road. She is all too happy to talk about the pitfalls of travelling and that makes her seem even more approachable.

4.  Migrationology

What I like about Migrationology

As someone who really enjoys eating, this youtube channel is fascinating to me. Mark's philosophy is that the best way to experience a new culture is to eat its food, and I'm inclined to agree. Mark loves street food and he eats likes the locals do - you won't find him in a Macdonalds or a Burger King unless there's really nothing else. Watching his videos lets me see food I've never dreamed of - and eating or even looking at new foods is one of my favourite ways of exploring. I like that Mark isn't afraid of slumming it either, for whilst he does occasionally visit five star restaurants, more often than not you'll find him on a street corner chomping away in the middle of chaos, which makes his travels seem really authentic.


Saturday, 11 April 2015

Why I love London

London is often billed as one of the best places to live in the world, and in spite of the noise, the pollution and the expense of living here, I'm inclined to agree. Here's why:

1. There's always something new to discover

I've lived in London most of my life, and I still haven't seen every part of it...and for the parts I do know well, there's still restaurants and bars and parks I've yet to visit. For someone who loves exploring, London is the perfect place to live as there's so much to see.

2. There are numerous green spaces

47% of London is green space, which isn't bad for a capital city. These green spaces include parks with interesting features such as giant buddhas or Japanese gardens or free zoos, as well as farms and peaceful stretches by the river; you certainly don't have to leave the city to feel closer to nature.

Greenwich Park

3. It's a great transport hub

I love travelling [as well you know by now] and I'm lucky to live somewhere that has so many flight connections to the rest of the World. London also train connections to European destinations as well as the rest of the UK, so it's a fantastic base for starting adventures.

Waiting In Luton Airport

4. There's so much variety

Some cities only offer a few different types of food in their restaurants, but London offers every type of cuisine imaginable - over the years I've sampled Japanese, Chinese, Mexican, Portuguese, Lebanese and Indian food, all within one city. Not only is there a huge variety of food in London, there are also a huge variety of cultures, as well as different types of music, different accents, different beliefs and different types of entertainment. London is a true melting pot, and that's what makes it so fascinating.  

A mixture of foods at Camden Market

5. It's not uniform

I love that London is not set out on a grid. Whilst grid systems are easy to navigate and make sense logically, I like how higgledy-piggledy London is, literally full of twists and turns. I love how it's a mixture of different architectural styles, and how new skyscrapers are often housed next to centuries' old buildings. Everything in London is a mish- mash, and as that's how I view my personality, it suits me down to the ground.