Solo travelling is for everyone

I’ve been on plenty of trips alone over the last few years. My first solo trip was to Amsterdam in the summer of 2014. I was very nervous to go on my own for a number of reasons. I didn’t know the city, I was a young woman – 19 years old at the time – and I had to be completely dependant on myself. Still, I was excited to test out solo travelling and see if it was as good as what I’d heard and read online.

I was in Amsterdam for about 4 days and the entire experience surpassed my greatest expectations. Since then I’ve been on a number of solo trips and even moved abroad for 7 months last year.

Solo travelling has honestly been one of the biggest blessings in my life, so here’s why I think you should give it a try.

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Jordan: Day 1 — 3

 

This is my first time in the Middle East and Jordan is definitely one of the best places I’ve ever visited.

I touched down in the capital Amman on Sunday night and I’ll be here for a week in total. I’m staying at the InterContinental Hotel, a wonderful 5* hotel in the heart of the city centre. The little Arabic that I know has been super handy whilst navigating about and greeting people. Alhamdulillah!

I find that Jordanians are extremely friendly and hospitable which means learning about their country, culture and history is enjoyable. Amman is spread across quite a few steep mountains, so the landscape is really beautiful and looking down on the city from above is just magical.

Though I’m in Jordan for work, I’ve actually had quite a lot of free time which has turned this experience more into a holiday. Lucky me, ay!

On my first day I had a wander around the old city and the famous Al-Rainbow Street with lots of cafes, restaurants and shops. Life basically starts in the evening over here so that’s when you’d find most people out grabbing a bite to eat, socialising or doing a bit of shopping. The colourful street lights and shop windows also make Amman feel particularly vibrant and lively.

 

My second day was spent at the Dead Sea. It was about a 45 minute drive from the hotel, and on the way my driver Emad recommended we stop at a store called Black Iris Handicrafts which sells mosaics, carpets, art work, carvings, souvenirs and dead sea beauty products. Lots of great items for decorating my future dream home. (Fun fact: the Black Iris is Jordan’s floral emblem.)

On arrival at the Dead Sea I got a day pass to Dead Sea Spa Hotel & Resort for only 20JD (£23) which allows private access to the beach, pools and the hotel’s restaurant. The Dead Sea itself was a dream. Because the water is soooo salty, about 10 times saltier than normal sea water, your body just floats and it’s basically impossible to swim. So I just spent a long time floating about, enjoying the warm sunshine and living my best life.

Later on I gave myself a good scrub with mud found in the various pockets along the beach. They say that this mud is very good for the skin and health in general, and I can’t lie I was feeling fabulous afterwards.

Dead Sea Mud.jpg

In the afternoon I had a delicious meal at the hotel restaurant – I couldn’t recommend it enough. Jordanian food is great for vegetarians and vegans because it contains lots of fruits, healthy sauces, vegetables and grains – similar really to the mediterranean diet.

That evening I had some light snacks at the funky Books@Cafe in downtown Amman.

Day three was mostly spent discovering the history of Amaan. I had a guided tour of the Citadel where I learned about the making of the city, how different civilizations governed it, the ancient ruins, Jordan’s independence, and how the country has changed in modern times. My tour guide Faysal was a great photographer too so shout out to him for the cool photos.

Roman Amphitheatre AMMAN.jpg

Faysal went on to teach me about the Roman and Greek influence in Amman as we toured the Roman Amphitheatre. It’s about 95 steps to the very top and seats about 6,000 people. I can only imagine how electrifying it must have been to perform on that stage back in the day!

As sunset began so did the hustle and bustle of the city. Echos of the Adhan (islamic call to prayer) could be heard from all over and people came in great numbers to gather and pray at the King Abdullah I Mosque, the famous blue-domed mosque of Jordan.

Faysal took me to a street food stall where we bought falafel wraps and ate sugary Jordanian desserts.

I feel so lucky to be abroad (once again), experiencing a new culture, language and a different way of life. I can’t wait to see what else is in store this week.

Here are more pictures of the adventures so far.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Avignon & Marseille

Earlier this month my friend and I decided to go to Avignon Festival in the south of France. We ended up staying in the small town of Avignon for about 4 days, and we watched about 2-3 shows per day covering a variety of genres including improvisation, drama, comedy and dance. It was a cool to experience so much art in a really beautiful, vibrant and sunny town. During our stay we rented bikes too and cycled up to the the Fortress and Abbey of Saint-André to get a strong dose of history. Continue reading

More from Greece!

Greece was amazingly, fantastically, exceptionally, incredibly, beautifully brilliant and it was an unforgettable first visit to the country. The weather was divine, the beaches were stunning and the people were exceptionally friendly and warm.

I visited Athens, Serifos and Syros during an 11-day adventure which was plenty of time to explore everything as a solo traveller. Whilst on the islands I stayed in small apartments that were all walking distance from the ports, good beaches, historical sites and decent restaurants.

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So far so good in Greece!

It’s day 7 and I’m just over halfway through my trip in sunny Greece.

I spent the first 3 days in the capital, Athens, and the rest on the peaceful and mesmerising Serifos Island. Later this afternoon I head to Syros Island which is a little bigger and busier than Serifos, but should be quite tranquil, nonetheless, as it is not high season.

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Greece, hold tight!

Great news! I’m going to Greece in September and I cannot wait. Woohoo!

This will be my first solo trip in about a year so I’m super, super, super excited to explore, meet new people, discover a new country and enjoy my own company.

I’ll be in Greece for about 11 days in total which should be enough time to discover Athens and perhaps one or two islands – I have yet to decide which.

I expect this trip will be a good balance between cultural activities, adventures and catching some sunshine on the beach – this chocolate is definitely ready to melt!

From doing a bit of research online I hear that there are a few impressive hiking trails to discover, which I know is going to be an unforgettable and absolutely beautiful experience.

🙂

 

Only 8 weeks to go!

 

Inchailloch, Loch Lomond, Scotland.

Last month I decided to do some exploring in Scotland and so I made a day trip to the small island of Inchailloch, which is really a gem located in the heart of Loch Lomond and only about 1.5hrs from Glasgow by public transport.

On the island I walked for a few hours, took plenty of landscape photos as well as a few selfies, had a picnic on the banks, climbed a few trees, reached the summit and I even made a friend during my visit.

It was sooooo refreshing to be away from the city and be all alone in nature. I had the opportunity to reflect, meditate and enjoy the beautiful scenery. It’s definitely a place I shall be returning to in the near future, and I hope to go camping in Scotland this autumn.

Voici les photos:

South of France – a weekend in paradise!

Three days ago I returned from a wonderful getaway weekend in the south of France. On the whole, the trip was far better than I had expected and it will definitely go down as one of my highlights of the year.

I arrived in Marseille on Saturday evening, and from the airport I headed straight to my friend’s house; he had just finished work so my arrival time was convenient for the both of us. When I got to his place we didn’t stay for long; we quickly packed our camping gear, enough water for the evening and soon headed off. However, before leaving Marseille we went to a bakery to get some delicious food for the evening and for breakfast the next morning. We bought loads of fresh, organic fruits like cherries and blueberries, and from the bakery we got some delicious pastries and a freshly-made baguette. With all the food packed in the car we were ready to set off on our 2 hour journey.

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Back to France – yay!

In under 48 hours I will be living life somewhere in the south of France.

Because I have Monday off I decided to pay a visit to a friend who lives out there. I’m heading for Marseille but my friend and I will be renting a car in order to get to another town whose name I have forgotten – oopsie! We’ll be doing some hiking, hanging on the beach and enjoying all that southern France has to offer. Hold tight for the juicy summer photos.

So excited I cannot wait!