Monday, 21 July 2014

Rottenburg, Germany

Reunited in the Fatherland!

Today I'm sharing a few snaps from the beautiful town of Rothernburg, Germany. We flew to Frankfurt last Wednesday. The airline lost our bags somewhere in transit, meaning we also missed our train to meet my family in Rothernburg. We ended up getting a train the next morning and after a few days of recycled clothing and jocks inside out our bags eventually caught up with us in Munich!

The christmas shop!! no photos allowed ;) 

Rothernburg is a romantic town, it feels as though you have stepped into a movie scene. Old German heritage houses with quaint little flower boxes in the windows. The town is surrounded by a stone wall and you can actually walk around the top and see some spectacular views. There's lots of great little cafes and shops, we did plenty of kaffee trinken! Its been great to catch up with family and travel as a group, we are having plenty of laughs.

The beautiful gardens

Some of the flower boxes, love!!

Kaffee trinken (Agustus Glope)

There's a beautiful Christmas shop in Rothenburg which is the best in the world, what a dream! The place we stayed in was wonderful, Walter the owner, was very attentive and provided a massive feast for breakfast,  which Phil and Dad particularly made the most of!Highlights included walking though the gardens, kaffee trinken, discovering beautiful little cottages and finally getting a sip of that delicious German beer, Prost!!

Phil and I will retire here, such a beatiful cottage

Mother and lucy enjoying some summer rays

Friday, 18 July 2014

Oporto & the Duoro Valley

Our time in Oporto has flown! Another breathtakingly beautiful part of Portugal that we have been lucky enough to get a glimpse of.

We caught the train from Lisbon, about a 3 hour journey. We spent the first two nights near the city centre, the following 3 nights we stayed in apartment close to the beach but still within a close proximity to the city by bus.

A typical park in Oporto
During our stay we took a small group tour to the Duoro Valley, the oldest wine/port region in the world! It was a classic group of people from all over the world on the tour, but we all got along swell and had a lovely day together exploring the mountains and tasting real authentic port. What an experience this was, one we will never forget. Our tour guide was fantastic,  he had so much knowledge of Portugal and the wine region and it was refreshing to see someone so passionate about thier country.

Duoro Valley

Laneways in Oporto
The pool at the apartment, bliss
Enjoying fresh and cheap seafood!

Oporto itself is a picturesque city, spanned across the Duoro river joint by a rather impressive bridge. We enjoyed exploring the sites then spending a few chilled days by the beach. The seafood by the beach was delectable,  so fresh and all cooked on the grill at the front of the restaurants. Cruising around on bikes along the coast is a must if you ever find yourself adventuring through Oporto.

I have throughly enjoyed our time in Portugal, so many beautiful sites!  I hope we can return one day! Ombregado!

Friday, 11 July 2014


We arrived in Lisbon last Saturday night, what a week it has been!  After a quick trip through town in a taxi we arrived at a small cobblestone laneway filled with people eating and drinking (& bunting). Our apartment was located on the fifth floor of an old terrace building in the Bairro Alto. Such a fantastic location, the Bairro Alto is lined with bars and restaurants,  its a sleepy place during the day but at night it comes alive, with the lanes partying until the sun  comes up. 

Lisbon is set amongst two main hills with a frontage facing the river, which makes for it's beautiful views and very steep slopes. Anywhere on foot in Lisbon sure is a workout! Just around the corner from our apartment was a hidden roof top bar called Park. Located on the top of 6 storey car park,  it was a little hidden gem. We spent a couple of blissful evenings here watching the sun go down on Lisbon town.

It sure is tough spending a day lazying at the beach, knowing its freezing winter at home haha! The beaches here are beautiful! Lots of people around, but it was a balmy 30 degrees and we ordered refreshing glasses of sangria to keep us hydrated ;) we may have got a little crispy this day!

Sintra is a little town located about 40 minutes from Lisbon. We took the train here yesterday, easily one of the highlight days so far. Its known as a fairy tale town with castles in the clouds, which is a pretty spot on discription.
Beautiful laneways scattered amongst green forest, sure did feel like a magical place. We had  lunch at quiet spot in the hills with one of the best views I have seen, what a treat!

What an amazing time we have had here in Lisbon. So much amazing history and views that never end. I think we might just have to retire here. Good food, good people and ancient ruins, there really is something for everyone :)

Sunday, 6 July 2014


The laneways

If your planning a trip to the UK anytime soon, fit in a trip to the coastal town of Brighton. You won't regret it.

I love Brighton. We took the train from London which took just under an hour. Brighton seems to be what most coastal towns try to achieve, a beautiful beach front with a town full of narrow little laneways filled with shops, cafes and restaurants.  Theres definitely no shortage of hipsters in this town! It is so easy to get lost in the laneways, we spent hours pottering in and out of the many stores. There's so many interesting little shops from vintage furniture to rockabilly dresses & old record stores. There are loads of bars and eateries, loads of fresh vegetarian and vegan places which was great. Even Phil enjoyed the shops so thats saying something.

The beach in Brighton is typically English with pebbles instead of sand. But this doesn't stop the locals from getting out and sun baking all day. If you're wondering what it feels like you could try lying on a pebble garden bed or driveway haha! Not the most comfortable, but the English seem happy to ignore it. Never the less, the beach is a lovely spot to sit with a glass of wine and watch the day go by. I particularly liked all the colourful little beach houses along the shore.

We booked our accommodation through airbnb and it was wonderful, hooray!  We stayed with a lovely lady Phillipa and her three year old son, who live just a short stroll from the beach.  Phillipa was a wonderful host, making us breakfast each morning and we had plenty of chats over cups of tea, a very authentic English experience.

Brighton beach houses

I am writing this post from the plane, so its fairwell to the UK and hello to Portugal! I hope we meet again England!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Summer in London

Last saturday our European adventure begun. First stop London.

We arrived early Sunday morning after an incredibly long flight from Melbourne.We were lucky enough to be able to catch abit of shut eye which helped us stay awake for most of the day. London is just beautiful, it has a real mixture of architecture with heritage and modern due to some parts being destroyed in the WW2 bombings. The city is immaculately presented, with a real vibrancy of cafes, flowers and shops along the street fronts.

London is notoriously known for being expensive particularly when it comes to accommodation.  As we're trying to limit our spending (so I can spend more on shopping) we  decided to stay in a hostel in town. The location was fantastic, staying in a cramped smelly room with 10 other people and sharing 3 toilets with 80 people certainly wasn't.  So we decided last night to upgrade to an apartment listed on windmu.  The listing turned out to be quite different from the advertisement. Our city view with balcony turned out to be  a small room in commission housing which is under going construction in a shady part of town. Oh well, I guess thats what you get when visiting London on a budget!

Kew gardens is a must see when in London, it was a perfect afternoon sitting amongst the imaculate English garden with our packed picnic. We've completed the usual must see's such as London Bridge, stunning Hyde Park and visiting the queen! Browsing the shops on Oxford strert and finding little coffee shops has definitely been my favorite activity in London. Today we are off to Brighton,  looking foward to seeing some English seaside!

     Hyde parkNotting Hill, London

Kew Gardens

Buckingham Palace
Happy about our upgrade ha!