My first destination – now revealed

Although not quite the suspense of ‘Who killed Lucy Beale?’ - I think I’ve done an OK job at generating some intrigue to the whereabouts of my first port of call................................   A handful of you suspected I would go straight to Australia or New Zealand. I mean, really…!?Geographically speaking, there is so much of the World situated before reaching those juggernauts. Might I ...

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Day 2 in the backpacker house

So what was my first night's stay in a hostel really like? Well, once the initial shock of adapting to my surroundings wore off, I found it quite easy to drop the slightly snobby attitude.        On closer inspection, everything was really quite clean and tidy. (As people spotted and commented on in yesterday's post). The dorm had an AC unit, the radiator was pumping out some good heat and the bed ...

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Exploring Athens: Part 1

Travel authors tend to propose an optimum amount of time to spend in a city, typically ranging between 1 and 3 days. Whilst this might be  applicable to holiday-makers, it doesn't really apply to me. As we know, I am not tied by the same time constraints and therefore my approach also offers me a slower pace meaning I don't have to try and cram in the vast amount of attractions within the suggested time-frame often ...

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In search of a second hostel in Athens...

I eventually participated in the 'free' breakfast I spoke of in a previous post consisted of hard boiled eggs and bread rolls with tea or coffee. Not bad but I needed more so the search was on       for my first crepe of the trip so far. ...

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Exploring Athens: Part 2

I've been in Athens now for three full days and I know there are more impressive architectural structures to seek out so that is what today, day four, is all about. But before that, do you remember    Mount Lycabettus from a post a couple of days back? If not, it's the goliath in this image HERE ...

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Exploring Athens: Part 3

Last night I had a my most enjoyable night out so far, although it involved little more than a meal and a couple of beers. It was memorable largely down to heading out with my dorm-buddy Robert     (a teacher) from Ireland. He and I were the only two occupants of room 12 from the torrid hotel Fivos and so naturally we conversed and found several topics of common ground. Travel, unsurprisingly, being one of them. This banter ...

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2nd destination: And the Winner is?

Sally Piscina with CYPRUS.Congrats Aunty Sally!As much as I'd like to deliver you the Champagne personally, that might be difficult, so I'll ask my Mother or Kate to kindly deliver this to you     in chilled form of course. May I recommend a box of Strawberries as ...

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I'm leaving Romania but here's why you should come!

Sadly, the time has finally come for me to move on from this surprisingly picturesque and peaceful country. Instead of heading further north into the mountains, which is what I thought I was doing up until a day or so ago, I've decided to move in a westerly direction. I've modified my plan so that I've left a large area to visit when I come back here one day. Hopefully by then one or more of you will be able ...

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Cyprus economics, Nick's family bar and more ancient ruins.

In reverse title order, let me first show you some ancient Cypriot ruins. BTW, did you know that Cyprus is reported as the birthplace for Aphrodite? I didn't.              Blog image credit: Thisismoney.co.uk These ruins are located at Amathous - an ancient royal city here in Cyprus. ...

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Just 8 days in and food poisoned!

Nick and his lady had some errands to run today so they dropped me off at the beautifully peaceful Limossal Marina. I recall feeling slightly unsettled when I woke up and remembered not feeling hungry at breakfast which was unusual. Still, before things got a little hazy, I was able to enjoy the scenery, sunshine and blustery breeze. The noticeable lack of people around made the scenery even more serene and tranquil. ...

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Destination 3: Romania

Yes, you read that correctly. Probably not a place you'd think a newbie solo backpacker would try so soon into his travels but hey, surprise! Indeed then, I caught a flight out of Cyprus to board    a Hungarian plane full of Romanians. As you do, right? Besides, who travels from Cyprus to Romania!? In fact, why am I travelling from Cyprus to Romania!? Such random des ...

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A weekend in Bucharest

Did you know that every single person who knew I was heading to Romania, of which there weren't very many, wished me 'good luck'. Clearly they knew something I didn't and being on my own, naturally   I felt a little daunted, although I didn't let on. Was their cause for concern massively overcautious or wholly accurate? To impart what I've learnt, I'll dedicate a separate post to this so in the meantime, please enjoy some tou ...

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A memorable train ride from Bucharest to Brasov

So I've made it to Transylvania then folks! Have you ever taken a 3 hour train journey and actually enjoyed it? I hadn't until today. The challenge right now though becomes how to write about a train journey and make it both accurate and entertaining. Can't promise anything but here is how I passed 3 hours earlier on: So get this, although I would soon approach my train with a bit of a face on (what could possi ...

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Exploring Brasov

Apart from how placid, gentle and civilised Brasov appears to be in contrast to Bucharest, the first noticeable difference was the temperature. It's plummeted here in the mountains and they are not   expecting sunshine for a few more days time. Still, as long as the rain holds out that's OK for me. Randomly, the city is notable for being the birthplace of the Romanian national anthem as well as having Romania's first school. ...

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Dracula's castle, Rasnov and a bear sanctuary all in one day

For a place so heavily reliant on tourism, perhaps unsurprisingly there are leaflets everywhere for tours in and around the Brasov commune. The most popular (for namesake at least), is a visit to Bram to see the castle. Separately, Rasnov supposedly offers a stunning fortress and then there is bear sanctuary fairly near too! All three sounded great but for 69 euros (excluding site entry) this sounded expensive and so ...

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An unforgettable first night in Belgrade, Serbia

If you're thinking I mean in a going out, having a good time sense - think again . I have been awaiting a particularly challenging day since my travels began and yesterday it finally came. It started with an epicly long day having left the hostel in Sibiu at 8am. As I eluded to in my last post, I knew I had a long 7 hour train journey ahead. A journey which I have since accomplished but those 7 hours didn't include a two hour stop off ...

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There's nothing sad about Novi Sad!

On the contrary, the city has the charm & elegance that Belgrade doesn't. Still, of course we need variety in our cities otherwise they'd all be the same - which would be sad. I have a concern though - I'm in Novi Sad for four nights. That's a long time in a city that people say you could do in a day, two if you're taking your time and I see what they mean. My allocation of four nights wasn't an error as such, rather it i ...

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An unforgettable second day in Belgrade, Serbia

There seems to be a bit of a pattern here. A first night I wouldn't forget and now an unforgettable second night. So that means then I've now warmed to Belgrade after my horrendously challenging first night and first impression??? No, not really. I still think it's a bit of sh!thole. At least that grading has gone down from a lot to a bit. Please note: T ...

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Day three and four in Belgrade

So even after four full days in Belgrade, I was still unconvinced by it so I thought I would seek some unbiased views from a couple of experienced travellers to see if my 'feeling' was wholly accurate or whether they felt endeared to it. Having now done this I'm happy to report back that my suspicions were re-affirmed by the two other people I consulted. I was 'happy' about this outcome because it showed me that within j ...

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Zbogom Belgrade, zdravo Novi Sad

Goodbye Belgrade, hello Novi Sad. Knowing I was leaving later on this afternoon, I intentionally woke early so I wouldn't miss out on two sightseeing events that I knew I wanted to get it. The official Nikola Tesla museum and the resting place of Josip Broz (TITO) - the former Yugoslav revolutionary. Embarrassingly I never knew of Nicola Tesla's brilliance before today. Tesla was a Serbian-American who we owe so much of to ...

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A glorious final day in sunny Serbia

Today was a simple day but nonetheless a day that each of you would have enjoyed. When I entered Serbia I remember I felt overwhelmed and intimated by the size and busyness of the metropolis       I had just stepped foot upon. If you recall, I had spent much of the last week enjoying the beautiful and quiet Romanian countryside so by contrast, Belgrade was the exact opposite. I'm happy to be able to say ...

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A familiar face and my biggest test yet!

As I eluded to in yesterday's post, I did indeed head to the airport this morning but it wasn't to board a plane. Instead I sat patiently in the 'Arrivals' area waiting for a familiar face. It was         certainly a strange feeling me being the 'local' and welcoming a foreigner to the town :-) So as a lot of you will know, last month I met with ...

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Why Air Serbia is better than all the rest!

Don't they say it's the little things that matter as they're what we remember...? Well it was a whole bunch of those little things that made my flight out of Serbia via Air Serbia the best flight I've ever had. I accept that's quite a statement and don't get me wrong - I didn't get a free massage nor were there offers to join the mile high club but still, as far as typical mundane flights go, this bettered them all and you'll see ...

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'When in ....'

I known you know the saying - don't make me spell it out... So a friend and ex-colleague guessed that I would take on Bulgaria next -another classic Eastern European capital with decent forward routes for afterwards. That would have been on the cards (and hopefully still is) but I found myself with a number of reasons to first come to one of the World's most expensive cities.... 1) I've actually not been here before. Our f ...

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'When in ....'

I known you know the saying - don't make me spell it out... So a friend and ex-colleague guessed that I would take on Bulgaria next -another classic Eastern European capital with decent forward routes for afterwards. That would have been on the cards (and hopefully still is) but I found myself with a number of reasons to first come to one of the World's most expensive cities.... 1) I've actually not been here before. Our f ...

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A visit to Albania's capital: Tirana

Admittedly I was happy to be back in a busy metropolis as you'd have to go back to Italy those weeks ago since I last sampled the heavily polluted city air. Since then its largely been rural villages, castles and vast amounts of walking. I came here then with minimal expectations and as such I would be less likely to be disappointed should the city not deliver me what I wanted it to. I needn't had worried though (not that I did) as I had enjoy ...

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Napoli: A city of two surprising halves...

And so my journey 'down south' continues folks. When my Rome friends discovered I was off to Naples, their words in unison were along the lines of "Naples is beautiful but always keep your eyes open". Ah, more warnings I see although these were from Italians that have lived in this country all their lives so I was certainly inclined to take note. I left Rome Termini in the direction of Napoli via this beast: ...

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Napoli: The birthplace of PIZZA!

For the few of you that didn't know that, you do now. "When you go to Naples you must order Pizza as it's the best in the World". This I was told a number of times and as a pizza lover back home       in the UK, that was something I was a little sceptical about. After all, how many different ways are there to prepare and cook a pizza!? Would such high expectations yield another anti-climatic experience? ...

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Salute from sunny Sorrento

Lots of people including my Mother and Kate's Father had said I should visit Sorrento as I was already this far south. As you can see, we didn't disappoint. Kate had done her research and discovered   that if we stayed on the outskirts, there were bargains to be had on the accommodation front so that's what we did. Currently then our residence for the short terms is the commune known as 'Piano di Sorrento' which was close enough ...

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A day trip to beautiful Capri

As per a blog comment yesterday from a friend back home, a day trip to Capri transitioned from a consideration to an absolute definite and I'm glad we listened. We found an indivdual price for around 30 euros return by a shuttle boat which appeared to be the best price we could find. Speaking of average, that amount is close to exceeding my daily allowance but I was happy to relax my budgetary regulations for this special trip and pus ...

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Pompeii and the mighty Mt. Vesuvius!

But neither of these were my favourite experience of the day for that would come later in the evening. As some of you may know, Pompeii is of historical and modern day tourist significance due to the carnage the town and its people saw over 2000 years ago. I say modern day but really this has been a tourist attraction for over 200 years and of course it is now a UNESCO World heritage site. So in case you didn't know, Pom ...

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I've left Italy but where am I now?

I'll reveal my latest location tomorrow but in the meantime will continue to drop some clues within this post. I will tell you though that today yielded my best and most proud photographic images since Athens so I hope you like them! First though, here's a quick teaser of the view from my room this very morning: ...

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My 30-summit birthday in Corfu

Or Kérkyra as it is spelt here. Ever since I departed Athens those weeks ago, I knew it was a case of when not if I would return to Greece. Honestly folks, I really can't say enough about how lovely   the people are, how relaxing their way of life is and what a peaceful existence they as individuals exude. I felt this in the capital city and I feel it here on one of their islands too. The friendly, helpful ...

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Rest and Relaxation...

Finally came today folks - after 43 days! And it lasted just over an hour as I got bored. No seriously... As such this is only a short post covering a couple of un-connecting things but here is proof of me chillaxing. Check out the lethal trainer-sock tan line! ...

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I've sailed across to Albania!

Well not me personally but a captain - or would skipper be more accurate? Now checkout the dream boat: Ha, only joking. This was my more hum ...

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What to do in Albania...

I haven't as yet had the chance to much about the hostel and its residents but I will do in the days to come. You'll see which way this is heading after I tell you that when I arrived early evening by boat, they instantly invited me to sit and eat with them at the table as they had prepared themselves fajitas with mined meat and feta salad. Also, they would not accept any money from me so naturally I will return this generosity over the days t ...

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Is Albania the cheapest Balkan country?

I didn't think I would ever see prices cheaper in Europe than I saw in Romanian and Serbia but it's now looking like I have. Example 1: Bottled water of this size costs no more than 90 LEK - 40 pence. That's a 6 litre container! ...

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Goodbye Saranda, hello Gjirokaster

As six of the last seven days have been spent in Saranda, it was finally time to say goodbye to the friends and temporary home I had made this last week. In addition to the wonderful ambience created by the manager Klardi, the Hairy Lemon hostel offered fantastic views of the beach that happened to very conveniently be just across the road. I made sure then that I spent at least a couple of hours down by the beach on this my final day. ...

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A miserably wet afternoon in Berat

Yes folks finally a less than pleasurable afternoon. That's a grand total of two single bad experiences in seven weeks of travel so I can't grumble too much can I. (The first being THAT time in Cyprus of course). So the day started off reasonably bright and sunny enough for us to not feel cold or think we would need rain- ...

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Adventuring along the Albanian Riviera...

Not only do they have a Riviera but its beauty is going to surprise you as it has me. And that wasn't the only surprise I'd thoroughly enjoy before the end of the day. But first it was time to check   out of the 'Hairy Lemon' hostel in Saranda. However, so welcoming and enjoyable has my stay here been that its had an affect on my normal analytical way of thinking. As such, I have decided that I will venture north, before head ...

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Driving the Amalfi coastline

And surviving it!You probably can't sense our combined relief from that but believe me, we were a little emotional this evening having successfully driven the coast and back without incident. I've mentioned a couple of times that despite all the big European cities I've seen in my lifetime (and driven in), Naples looked to me to be far the worst. I had mixed emotions then when I stumbled on a website the very night before whilst resear ...

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A miserably wet afternoon in Berat

Yes folks finally a less than pleasurable afternoon. That's a grand total of two single bad experiences in seven weeks of travel so I can't grumble too much can I. (The first being THAT time in Cyprus of course). So the day started off reasonably bright and sunny enough for us to not feel cold or think we would need rain- ...

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An Italian hitman in Tirana!!!

Looks like yesterday's post won't be my last in Albania after all. Infact, neither will this one as there will be one more to come showing today's activity and it won't be one you'll want to miss to   appreciate scenic nirvana. The first semi-comical, semi-serious email my brother Gino sent me when he heard I was coming to Albanian was to 'Take care' as he had seen how mean those big angry men were from th ...

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Lake Komani: Scenic bliss in Albania

This is definitely the last post and last day in Albania folks and so to find this 'scenic bliss' the team and I had to endure a long, long day. Yes, we could have done this the easy way and paid 33  euros each to have everything worked out for us but as ever, I (and the others) had no intention on paying the 'tourist trap' price that was conveniently orchestrated by our hostel manager in Shkoder. Remember 33 euros in Albania is the e ...

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Mountainous Montenegro

Myself, the well-travelled Dutch lady and the gentle German giant said our goodbyes to half of the people in yesterday's group photo as we headed for Montenegro whilst the others headed further north into the Albanian mountains to hike. For those interested in getting to Montenegro from Shkodra read this paragraph otherwise skip it. You will need to pass the land-border stop of Ulrich. To get to our intended ...

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A return to a holy place for a wholly holy person

Bit of a tongue-twister that and no, I don't mean myself as I've never been here before! So sadly it's my last full day in Italy's capital and I have to say, I've really enjoyed it. Today then will be about the tourist attraction - Vatican city! As I briefly spoke about in a previous post, I've not needed to use the metro once due to the frequency of the Rome bus service but today I paid my £1 to get to T ...

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Office worker, turned blogger, turns hiker!

How many capital cities do you know of where people advise you not to visit? I don't mean from a safety aspect but rather from a dullness and lack of excitement perspective. If you don't have an immediate answer to the above, you soon will in the form of Podgorica - Montenegro's capital city. When fellow travellers say there really isn't much to do there and that I should skip it and hostel managers say the same - then that's what you do. ...

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A Montenegrin mountain road trip

Upon visiting Montenegro, it would have been so easy for me to have just done the coastline and do a bare minimum here of a day or two before heading north to Croatia like many other travellers do.     Instead, I gambled on giving this country more of my time and I'm immensely pleased I made that decision. I had accepted a couple of days ago that to get the most of this country, it was going to cost me a whole lot more than I ...

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Visiting the largest canyon in Europe!

And second in the world only to the Grand Canyon lies here in Montenegro and it is known as the Tara River Canyon. This was definitely on today's itinerary; the only question was how to get to it as I was still a little sore after yesterday's 20KM hike! Thankfully this wasn't a dilemma for long as the fab owners of the fab Hiker's Den hostel casually offered a group of us a personalised guided tour in their car for less than 5 Great Briti ...

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Europe's equivalent of Jordan's Petra...

Is the Ostrog monastery. Interestingly it comes with a little mystery attached to it in the sense that nobody knows much about who or what built it. That's quite strange to hear these days right?         I had initially accepted this wasn't going to be a tourist attraction I could visit because the tour price would have been around 35 euros and I couldn't justify that. Regular readers will know that I've managed to refrain ...

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Plitvice - Croatia's premier national park

Croatia boasts an impressive eight national parks and collectively they account for nearly 8% of the entire country! Quite a statistic. Unsurprisingly then one of these parks is Croatia's most visited tourist attraction so naturally I had to go and check out what all the hype was about... So I first heard of Plitvice Lakes from my Italian friend Laura, pronounced Lao-ra, whom I met in Serbia and then again in Rome!. I recall being awes ...

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Moving south to Mostar, Herzegovina

WIKI says that Mostar is the most important city in the Herzegovina region. It also says there are no official border distinguishing the Herzegovina region from the Bosnian but it is generally accepted that the borders are Croatia to the south west, Montenegro to the east, the Maglic mountain to the north east, and Ivan planina to the north. So there you have it, a country without official borders. I had heard from several travellers t ...

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Moving on up the Dalmatian coast

Earlier I said goodbye to the lovely hostel in Trebinje and therefore I also said goodbye to Bosnia and Hergoniva - the country I have called home these last ten days. I took a bus from the local station first reaching Dubrovnik before switching buses for a main connection to my next destination. This part of the journey was four hours long - my longest time on a bus to-date - although it was the most comfortable I've exper ...

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A terrific time in Trebinje!

Heading south from Sarajevo to Mostar, viewers with a good sense of direction might have deduced that my next country would be Croatia and therefore next up, Dubrovnik - the so called Pearl of The Adriatic. I'm willing to bet that whoever coined that didn't spent much time in Montenegro or Albania!. However, I was facing a major dilemma and as of yesterday morning, this was still unresolved. Dubrovnik is such a po ...

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Sarajevo

Needs no introduction to most folk over a certain age but despite the atrocities that have taken place here in recent times, I have a strong belief that many others won't be familiar with The Bosnian war, the 'ethic cleansing' and therefore the scale of devastation that took place here. I will write more about the genocidal incident in a later post. Admittedly I was around 10 years old when the Siege of Sarajevo began and so I fe ...

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Sarajevo

Needs no introduction to most folk over a certain age but despite the atrocities that have taken place here in recent times, I have a strong belief that many others won't be familiar with The Bosnian war, the 'ethic cleansing' and therefore the scale of devastation that took place here. I will write more about the genocidal incident in a later post. Admittedly I was around 10 years old when the Siege of Sarajevo began and so I fe ...

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Sarajevo

Needs no introduction to most folk over a certain age but despite the atrocities that have taken place here in recent times, I have a strong belief that many others won't be familiar with The Bosnian war, the 'ethic cleansing' and therefore the scale of devastation that took place here. I will write more about the genocidal incident in a later post. Admittedly I was around 10 years old when the Siege of Sarajevo began and so I fe ...

CONTINUE READING

Sarajevo

Needs no introduction to most folk over a certain age but despite the atrocities that have taken place here in recent times, I have a strong belief that many others won't be familiar with The Bosnian war, the 'ethic cleansing' and therefore the scale of devastation that took place here. I will write more about the genocidal incident in a later post. Admittedly I was around 10 years old when the Siege of Sarajevo began and so I fe ...

CONTINUE READING

Sarajevo

Needs no introduction to most folk over a certain age but despite the atrocities that have taken place here in recent times, I have a strong belief that many others won't be familiar with The Bosnian war, the 'ethic cleansing' and therefore the scale of devastation that took place here. I will write more about the genocidal incident in a later post. Admittedly I was around 10 years old when the Siege of Sarajevo began and so I fe ...

CONTINUE READING

Plitvice - Croatia's premier national park

Croatia boasts an impressive eight national parks and collectively they account for nearly 8% of the entire country! Quite a statistic. Unsurprisingly then one of these parks is Croatia's most visited tourist attraction so naturally I had to go and check out what all the hype was about... So I first heard of Plitvice Lakes from my Italian friend Laura, pronounced Lao-ra, whom I met in Serbia and then again in Rome!. I recall being awes ...

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I'm in Feldkirch for the night but...

Where the **** is Feldkirch!? Well, it's actually in Austria and seriously close to Lichtenstein but probably like you, I too had never heard of Feldkirch until very, very recently. So this morning I departed the Burger King-managed hostel I had stayed at in Bertesgaden for the last few nights. In fact, last night I was treated to an Alpine storm. It was both thunderously loud and magically illuminating. Check ...

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Pearls of wisdom from inside a laundrette!

So I was in the local laundrette situated close to where I was staying in Zagreb doing, yep you guessed it, my laundry. I selected a light 30 minute cycle, paid my dues to the automated machine (this is a complete self-service operation) and took a seat whilst enjoying the free Wifi. You've gotta love these modern perks. Half way through my cycle a man walks in, funnily enough, to do his laundry too. He looked a litt ...

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Lovely Ljubljana

Slovenia's capital is pronounced a whole lot easier than it looks! Try, Lube-Lee-Anna. That wasn't too bad was it. I had a rough idea of what to expect upon visiting here as a travel blogger I follow rates this as her favourite city in all of Europe! Having spent just a few hours walking around, I would undergo quite a transformation from thinking 'No-way' into 'I can totally see why'. Still, if you'd have told me a few n ...

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Lake Bled: Slovenia's no 1. tourist destination

In addition to visiting the capital, Bled is a 'must do' place when in Slovenia. The other popular attraction is the Postojna cave but unfortunately I won't be going. As much as I would like to, the   outright cost is 23 euros and then you have to add 10 on for a return bus journey. Factor in some water through out the day (and even if you bring your own food to keep costs down) you're soon approaching 35 euros! As a backpacker, I ca ...

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Another stranger, another road trip

For most of this week the three bed dorm I'm staying in has been occupied by myself and the ex-Home and Away writer, Mark. Except mid way through this week a Spanish man joined us intending to lodge   for a couple of nights. As Mark continued to be engrossed in his work, conversation fell to me to initiate and so that's what I did and the man introduced himself as 'Nacho'. Lol. This might be a perfectly normal ...

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Why you should come to Slovenia for a holiday!

In case its not already obvious, I've really, really enjoyed my ten days here in Slovenia. Relative to the number of days I've spent here, I think I've created more Slovenian blog posts than for anywhere else. As such, I felt compelled to write this short post as to why you should consider Slovenia as your next short-break holiday destination. This post will summarise some of the experiences I've blogged about so far ...

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A magical, starry night in Ljubljana

In fact, tonight was my favourite night all-in-all since my travels begun but you know you're getting old when that statement doesn't involve, Sex, Drugs or Rock n roll. So with two back-to-back tiring but rewarding days behind me in the form of Lake Bled and Triglav National Park, I was genuinely looking forward to long sleep and a day of rest allowing me to catch up with this equally tiring blogging malarkey. This all went to plan an ...

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Maribor has been misunderstood...

By my Spanish friend Nacho and who else I wonder. As the second biggest city in Slovenia, I was surprised when Nacho told me before I knew myself that I was actually coming here, to not bother. 'There is really nothing to see there and really nothing to do', he proclaimed. Worryingly, and as I spent an entire day with Nacho, I know that he is 'worldly' and an intrepid explorer himself so I am perplexed by the difference in opi ...

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3 Cities, 2 Countries in 1 day

This post needs to be divided into two parts so consider today's post as part 1. Today folks marks my three month travel anniversary. It would end up being a day I will never forget for as long as I live. Profound words hey but you'll understand in tomorrow's post. To add to today's unprecedentedly difficult day, it would also the longest day I've ever had. I got up at 6am, was on the road for 7am and arrived at my ultimate destination ...

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Why, why, why...

As you may have seen from yesterday's post, I had a really productive half day in Graz until things went terribly wrong after midday and so it's there that we return to start the story of the post that I never, ever expected to write. The time was around 12.15pm and I had been walking almost non-stop since 8am. I had a short 10 minute rest at the top of the Church Tower hill but hadn't as yet stopped properly for something to eat or dr ...

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My three month travel anniversary!

Dear readers, Following on from last week's devastating news, thank you so much to the 10+ people who reached out to me publicly and privately. Nearly a week later I continue to function as normal on the whole and it's only those sudden, spontaneous thoughts which continue to have an affect. I was walking down the street the other day feeling good, headphones and shades on (default guise these days) with the sunshine beaming on my face ...

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Grube from Vienna, Austria

'Greetings' indeed all, though excuse the poor English spelling of the German word. Getting straight to the point - whilst there's plenty to see here in Vienna, there isn't much to do. This means I'm inclined to only create one single post here but don't be    fooled, I've still put a lot of effort into this and so you can expect more images than normal so please take your time working through it... Vienna is ...

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Would Salzburg feel like another Vienna...?

Or would I have an entirely different outlook on this city? Let's find out... My migration west to Salzburg started flawlessly with a fantastic train journey and for once it wasn't due to the scenery (although that wasn't bad either to be fair). Instead I had chosen a privately owned train over the government one and was staggered at the difference in quality for what really should be a comparable experience. Here is ...

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A weekend in the Bavarian Alps...

Welcome everyone to the mighty Deutschland! So did you guess the historical face from the main blog post image? In all honesty, if you'd have asked me three months ago if I was planning on visiting     Germany, I would have answered fairly emphatically, 'no' - purely because I did not expect to have come this far west from my first port of call, ...

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What else is there to do in and around Bertesgaden, Bavaria?

Bertesgaden, is the main transport hub so a lot of tourists enter here. Tourists mainly from German speaking countries and of course, the plentiful and adventurous far east Asian's. Is there any part of the World they don't visit!? I must say that this area is probably the least English spoken area I've been to in a while. Still, this wouldn't deter me from the wanting to explore the few other popular attractions I'd read up on before ...

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Interlaken, Switzerland!!!

As per the external ink I provided in my last post, I have landed in one of the richest countries in the World. But before you think I've lost the plot or that I'm a walking contradiction having recently had to use my emergency credit card to pay for the bear necessities, well, some things are important that money.... Before that, what else do I know about Switzerland other than they're considered a very rich country, that their m ...

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Is travelling in Switzerland affordable?

Informational post If you think the answer to this is an obvious one, well I'm here to surprise you as I've learnt and observed a few things during my four days here in Interlaken that I want to share with you to inform, inspire and ultimately influence any future decisions you might have in the near future about coming to Switzerland. So let's get started...   ...

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A weekend base in Lausanne...

My tally for total days spent in Switzerland is approaching one week - and what a great week it's been. As ever, I arrived here with no expectations and certainly no delusions of perfection but one week later, I really felt my stay here has come very close to that... Lausanne is a French speaking thriving little town. Well, as it's the fourth largest city in Switzerland perhaps it's more thriving than it is little!& ...

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A special day trip to Stuttgart

The mighty Deutschland is my new country of temporary residence. This is perhaps not too surprising considering its geographical position and proximity to Switzerland. So I've arrived in a town called Karlschule and it is here I will stay for a couple of nights. Originally I had planned on staying in Stuttgart but a shortage of availability in hostels (yes, that problem again) meant I had to look elsewhere and instead w ...

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'Visiting Heidelberg should be a must...'

Was what I was recently told by Lukas, my German travel companion from a couple of months back. Not wanting to disappoint and considering this was in the direction I was heading, why not I thought and voila, that's where I now write to you from. And look, after 116 days finally a Gino's! (My brother). Heidelberg lies within a State known as Baden-Württemberg which is immediately west of Germany's large ...

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Four nights in Zagreb

No different to any other city, opinions of Zagreb found there way to me heavily contrasted. Back in Zadar last week, one roomie said it was the best period of her travels so far having stayed there   for five nights although granted, I don't recall how long she had been on the road for. Then another other girl said it was OK but you wouldn't need more than a day. Hmmmm....!? That's why you learn to often take what you ...

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A star in the making?

  So do I now have your attention! Thought so :-) This post is unrelated to my travels but as its something the family are so proud of, well, we fel ...

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Getting into (and around) Gdansk, Poland

How could I ignore this jewel of Eastern Europe! Besides turning West would mean turning in the direction of home and that's not in my plans just yet. Let me quickly tell you about 'two firsts' that I experienced on the airplane to get here from Germany: 1) I board the Wizz Air plane with my ticket showing seat number 7A. I knew that 'A' meant I would have the window seat which is always a good thing and especial ...

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A day trip to Rüdesheim...

Or Rüdesheim am Rhein as it's officially known due to it being 'on the Rhine' river. I'd never heard of this town before coming to Frankfurt and so my discovery of such a place was by complete chance; as is often the way of any open-minded traveller... The morning of the day before I was sat having breakfast when a girl join my table needing a seat. We exchanged an opening salutation and some pleasantries and th ...

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Malbork castle or the upside-down house?

Those were my sight-seeing options for my penultimate day here in Poland's glorious 'Tri-city' area. In saying that, both of these are located at least an hour away from Tri-city and in completely the opposite direction to each other so I only wanted to see one of them. Unsure of which to see, I asked the hostel staff for their opinions and the vote returned was unanimous; Malbork castle it wa ...

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Justin Cook: An update of sorts...?

If you are coming to this post unaware of who Justin is, was, then you have two choices: either read THIS past blog post first and then come back here or skip this post and await my next Germanic travel related post in the days to come.   Hi folks, So I have now heard back from Erik, the close friend of Justin and so I have posted his ...

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Justin Cook: An update of sorts...?

If you are coming to this post unaware of who Justin is, was, then you have two choices: either read THIS past blog post first and then come back here or skip this post and await my next Germanic travel related post in the days to come.   Hi folks, So I have now heard back from Erik, the close friend of Justin and so I have posted his ...

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Justin Cook: An update of sorts...?

If you are coming to this post unaware of who Justin is, was, then you have two choices: either read THIS past blog post first and then come back here or skip this post and await my next Germanic travel related post in the days to come.   Hi folks, So I have now heard back from Erik, the close friend of Justin and so I have posted his ...

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Justin Cook: An update of sorts...?

If you are coming to this post unaware of who Justin is, was, then you have two choices: either read THIS past blog post first and then come back here or skip this post and await my next Germanic travel related post in the days to come.   Hi folks, So I have now heard back from Erik, the close friend of Justin and so I have posted his ...

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Pensiveness at Westerplatte rewards me with afternoon fun!

I spent the first half of my day in almost complete silence pondering over the preciousness of life only for the second half to reward me with a short, but forever memorable burst of fun. In fact, I experienced these fifteen minutes of pure enjoyment on my own and therefore without the company of anyone else. Solo travel can be fun too folks and whatever preconceptions you might have, you could ...

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Three nights and a handful of experiences in Torun

  I know I don't usually start a post with an image but that figure is Torun's most notable claim to fame with Torun being the birthplace of the astronomer, ...

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My first two days in Warsaw...

Are unlikely to be my last. In fact, I think I'm going to stay on here a further 2 or 3 more days as this capital city really does have that good a vibe about it and there is plenty to see and do here. It was the National Polish Armed Force day here recently commemorating the anniversary of the 1920s victory over Soviet Russia at the Battle of Warsaw. This event is taken very seriously with it being ...

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My last two days in Warsaw

So as I eluded in my previous post, I did indeed stay on here in Warsaw but even during this extended stay I still couldn't find the time to get to know the real history of the city. If you can't see the irony in this, let me help: Regular viewers will know that first and foremost I always get out and about to learn as much about a city as possible - or until my tiny brain has been overloaded which admittedly doesn't take very l ...

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A travelling solo article on MSN...

Has caught my attention but not in a positive way. MSN (The Microsoft Service Network). These days a web-portal offering a variety of services including a 'Bing' backend search engine, app shortcuts to a number of Microsoft applications such as Outlook.com and of course, predominalty an up-to-date news feed page. I'll admit it's not often I visit MSN and invariably only when I launch Outlook.com to access one o ...

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'A ticket to Lodz please'. Sorry, where?

Since I entered Poland those weeks ago I've been getting around the country mixing up my transportation methods between the fantastic Polski bus service and also by train. It was by train I left Warsaw to reach my next destination; a city named Lodz. But before I even boarded the train two events took place. The first needs limited text, just pictures: ...

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Dazzling sights and dazzling heights...

In Cefalu. Cefalu is an hour's train ride east of Palermo at a cost of 12 euros return. This relatively close distance means it's still part of the province of Palermo. Actually I had such a nice afternoon a few days ago that I've chosen to revisit it but this time round I've come for more than a wander as I have a target in mind. This target: ...

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Day 2 in picturesque Poznan

I slept well last night and was relived to have woken with no aches or pains despite having walked somewhere between 15 and 20 kilometres yesterday! I woke naturally at 8.30am, had breakfast and was out of the door by 9.15am which has gotta be close to a hostel record!? As a conscientious traveller, I packed what I would need for my second day out the night before not wanting to disturb all other sleepers. You'd be surprised (or perha ...

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To the edge of Poland, and beyond!

But unlike Toy Story's Buzz Lightyear, I actually made it to beyond as you'll see later. Oh, and that's what that slightly strange blog post image is about. First though, and as I eluded to in yesterday's post, I have a couple more surprises up my sleeve and without further ado, here is the first of them: Look folks, it's Lukas! ...

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The amazing Mother Teresa...

No, not the holy, blessed one from Calcutta. Sadly I never got to meet here but I happen to know someone worthy of bestowing the same title or description upon. I arrived in Krakow on the day that someone dear to me was coming over to visit. Normally I would plan to arrive days earlier in a city to familiarise myself with it but I had such a good time with Lukas that I certainly don't regret staying the extra night. Look ...

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Sightseeing in and around Krakow

Morning comes and the the first question on my mind was 'How did you sleep, Mum?'. 'Okay', she says, 'but I've been up since 5am. Still, that's better than the night before'. I viewed the breakfast table from a distance and couldn't hide my enjoyment the closer I got. Admittedly it was great to be able to enjoy this part of hotel life although to be fair, and as I've mentioned before, lots of hostels ...

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An end in Krakow means an end in Poland

Krakow will be my last destination in Poland folks as I have my next destination lined up. As you know, I've covered a lot of ground here but there's more to see in this sizeable country meaning these remaining to-do's will be put on my 'Next time' list which I will one-day get round to completing. (This will only be a simple text-based web-page listing what I should try and do if I ever visit that country aga ...

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Ok, so I've got some news for you...

And it may or may not surprise but so here goes: Coinciding with a recent Instagram post from earlier, I shared with my subscribers a graphically enhanced 'stats board'. Tell me, did any of you notice my blog post count!? I can hardly believe it myself. Can we get the Champagne out? Anyhow, here is what I posted so be sure to read all the text... ...

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Thinking of visiting Sardenga or Corsica?

    Informational post for travellers or holiday makers wanting to visit either island. Regular readers feel free to skim t ...

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Day 1 in picturesque Poznan

I never intended to publish my time in Poznan as two individual posts but I've taken a fair few photographs here which is why I've chosen to separate them. Poznan then, the town that Lodz really wasn't. This became evident almost immediately starting with the surrounding buildings and streets having a more polished look and feel to them. No surprise then to find men in suits and ladies in dresses and less 'film stars ...

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A catch-up in Wroclaw

By now I'm guessing you've all worked out why I've been in Poland for so long and how I am financing my trip???   Haha, only joking. So do you recall the ...

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Arrivederci England, arrivederci friends and family

I wanted to get an initial, informative text-based post out so that:1) You knew I had arrived OK.2) I can provide you a rough plan for the next week.3) I can describe some feelings and emotions I had leaving England.4) I can share with you some small and some not so-small things learnt in just 12 hours. 1) As per the 'Where am I right now' applet on the main blog page, I have landed, navi ...

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Bonjourno Milano, remember me?

This isn't the first time I've visited Milan but I've seen more here in these last two days than I have in all other previous visits. In saying that, there isn't really that much to see here and that's especially true if art, museums or designer shopping outlets are not your thing. Put it this way, when visiting the mighty San Siro (a football stadium) ranks highly in 'What to see in Milan', well, you set your expectations accordingly ...

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Should he stay or should he go?

Votes are in, the decision has been made... Prior to my visit to Poland back in early August, my good friend Ben contacted me asking if I would be back in the UK any time soon to attend his daughter's Christening. I regretfully informed him that I had no plans to return just yet but shortly after his contact, a thought struck me - I wonder if my niece was also soon to be christened? ...

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Fine dining (and more) in Sestri Levante

Having recently moved south from Milan, it dawned on me that I've been fortunate enough to visit several regions of Italy already this year. That's significant because food, like many things in Italy, are regional - not necessarily national. Take one of my favourite Italian dishes - Anolini. This is well known in Parma but I'd imagine much less so and even unheard of in much of the rest of Italy. I sill have the fondest memories of my ...

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Sun, sea and south Sardenga

Or Sardinia as I believe it is spelt in English? Either way, it's an autonomous region of Italy. I'm both excited and a little relieved to say that a few days ago I successfully touched down on this, the second island of my five island Mediterranean challenge. Apologies it's taken me slightly longer than normal to post, it's just that where I've been staying is in the countryside meaning there's a lot more chance of seeing goa ...

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Two days of travel = no days of fun!

Many of you won't understand when I say I don't consider my travelling as a 'holiday'. Regular viewers, however, should know what I mean by that as instead of lazing around, I'm always on the go wanting to learn, see and enjoy new things. That's why I am so appreciative I was able to stay with Uncle Rob and indeed enjoy a mini holiday to see some of what Sardenga is well known for - its crystal clear, glass-like effect sea water. ...

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The beauty of Bonafacio, Corsica

Yes, that means I've landed on the French island of Corsica and therefore the third of my five island challenge! Just like we hear on the television, the following post contains some flash photography but hopefully not the type that will give you a seizure. . But first we continue our journey together following my post... Having arrived in Santa Teresa Di Gallura, the host of my pre-booked B& ...

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Moving up north through Corsica

It was already time to leave Bonafacio - much to my disappointment. You saw how captivating the place was as depicted in my previous post. Last night I researched the possible route options available to me moving north and realistically I had two choices: head north west to Ajaccio or head north east to Porto Vecchio. That's 'Porto', not 'Ponte' - as in the old bridge in Florence. Having deliberated over my two choices, it ev ...

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Gdansk and Poland's equivilent of 'St Tropez' - Sopot

I've realised that although I've made clear by now my positive feelings towards 'Tri-city', I've not actually posted many pictures of its respective towns - until now. This, then, sets out to complete the Tri-city with pictures and information relating to both Gdansk and Sopot as later today I will here leave to head further south.   Sopot ...

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Top things to do in Malta

Top things to do in Malta Based on my own enjoyable experiences and from the adventures of fellow travellers, I've compiled a short but strong itinerary of places you should visit and things you should do if you're considering coming to Malta. If you're able to 'tick off' the majority of following, I can assure you that you'll feel ful ...

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Taking on Mount Etna!

Apologies for the reduced posts last week folks - it's just that I've experienced the worst two Wifi connections since I've been travelling. As such, I'll incorporate two consecutive (but very different) days into one mighty Catania-based post as that is where I now am. Take your time over this one and (hopefully) enjoy the read. So after a very memorable and unforgettable week in Palermo, I departed in the direction of Catan ...

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I've returned to the UK...

And so naturally I have mixed feelings and emotions right now on this first morning 'home'.  Besides it's looking like it's going to rain heavily soon - an element I've happily gone without for so long. Remember it's not just the physical manifestation of rain that I will find depressing, but of course the mental side effect it will bring. For this last reflective post, it's in the direction of the past we must go b ...

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Highs and lows in Florence, Tuscany

I've arrived in the most inhabited city of Tuscany - Florence (or Firenze in Italian). That's actually useful to know as you'll be waiting for a long time in the train station if you're looking for 'Florence'. Here is the adjoining building attached to the rear of my hostel:   ...

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Two days in Pisa, Tuscany

Having arrived in Pisa means of course that I've successfully made it back to the mainland. As a budgeting backpacker, I have to admit I was happy to be back on less expensive, less exclusive land. As I mentioned in my 'Thinking of travelling to Sardenga or Corsica?' post, I'd love to come back to these islands but it would have to be ...

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Sicily and beautiful Italia

"...is both beautiful and it's cheap" - is what I have been told numerous times in these last six months and by mainland Italians. Is there a better combination!? I discovered I was able to confirm half of this at the earliest opportunity possible - from on-board the plane! I remember thinking to myself even bleary eyed in the morning that the vista from a couple of thousand feet up in the air showcased the most beau ...

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A girl like no other...

No no, not like that - chance would be a fine thing. But still a girl so unusually different to anyone else I have ever met, I just needed to get this down 'on paper'. This actually occurred a little while back, just never got round to finishing the text - but now I have. As you know, I am 'a people person'. This means that meeting folk and generally getting on with 99% of people in come into contact with is ...

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Catania to Syracuse and an end to Sicily :-(

Despite having spent the four previous days in Catania, I didn't get to know the city very well at all - which isn't something I say too often. I'm not entirely sure why but the fact that I've had a travel companion by my side for the last week will have had something to do with. Speaking of that man, he's again accompanied me to my next stop south of Catania to an ancient town named Syracuse. After this we will go our own ways.Befor ...

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Just to let you know that I've arrived...

In Malta! In the evening. In the dark. Transported by a Catamaran from Pozzallo in the deep south of Sicily to the Maltese capital of Valletta. I have to admit folks I'm really excited to be here as this is my first time and if I think about it, I can count on one hand for certain the number of people I know who have actually visited here! How bizarre. Or is it? Have you been to Malta before? How was your experience? Th ...

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Mission: Exploration of Malta. Status: Commenced

Earlier this week I received an email from a friend back home saying how my blog had opened his eyes to a number of things and in particular, the quality and cost of alternate accommodation. (By alternate, I specifically mean other than hotels). Finally. Someone. A perfect time then to show you my latest hostel. First though, I needed to get here as it was in a different city to  ...

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A weekend wander in Gozo!

'Sorry, where!?', I hear many of you say. Although they won't be words you'll hear from Hollywood's premier Husband and Wife... The Maltese Archipelago is made up of several small Islands but only Malta, Gozo and Comino are inhabited. In this regard, Malta would often be considered the 'mainland' when compared to its smaller, neighbouring islands. As of this writing I've just completed four days in ...

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Six Maltese bays, four friends and another sunny afternoon

Today was another wonderfully sunny day and I knew exactly how I was going to make the most of it. Having learnt that the proximity between several popular villages were within 4KM of each other, this should mean I could reach all four bays by-foot and what's more, I knew this stretch was practically all promenade. I was hopeful that resulting images from my day out would be picturesque enough to further showcase more of Malta's natural and ma ...

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Malta, the end is nigh...

My time here in Malta is soon to expire. It feels therefore appropriate to bring out the 'time flies when you're having a good time' cliché as that's certainly been the case for me with it feeling like I arrived only a couple of days ago when in actual fact, it's been two weeks! You might even recall my entrance to Malta those weeks ago was by boat, at night, and it was on arrival that I was immediately memorized not ...

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30 pictures why you should visit Malta

30 pictures why you should visit Malta ...

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I'm back at where it all began...

No, not at the manifestation of civilisation (wasn't that somewhere in Africa?) but the starting location of my travels. Thinking back to April 2015, I arrived here in Athens, alone, and frankly, without much of a clue. That was seven months ago. But what about now? What's changed? Have I changed? I'll answer this by comparing pieces of text I wrote then to the feelings and experience I have now. First though, why have ...

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A spectacular sunset at Cape Sounion

I took a gamble today and as you'll see from some of the photographs later on, the gamble was worth it. With two full days in Athens, I made a simple plan. The first day was to catch up on some things and write to you lot about being back in Athens. Generally, it was a day to just chill and that was fine by me having seen the main attractions previously this year. Still, I enjoyed some afternoon strolling in the main park close by ...

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The fifth largest Mediterranean island - reached!

I've done it folks! I'm so chuffed to have made it to my fifth (and final) Mediterranean island; the island of Crete - or Creta as it's pronounced outside of England and a pronunciation I've actually come to prefer. For those unaware, two months ago I hatched a plan that was then, somewhat bold and ambitious. Furthermore, I knew next to nothing about whether it was logistically viable to manoeuvre around these islands using public tran ...

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Rest and relaxation on some Cretan beaches

As I touched on previously, I've managed to successfully adapt to the slow-pace of life here in low-season, Crete. With the weather comparably fantastic for this time of year, I've spent the last couple of days relaxing down by the sea which isn't a bad way to spend time in mid-November. Speaking of this time of the year, and despite not currently being a parent, I've come to appreciate the frustration families can face when ...

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Troubled Greece, don't we mean terrific Greece!?

A relatively short text-based post about a country we only ever hear the worst about in the media. Is it really all doom and gloom over here? Let's delve a little further... My latest return to Greece signifies my third visit this year - that's more return-visits in 2015 than any other country. Coincidence or not? I'm honestly not sure but reading through some old postings, I notice that I was ...

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My final days in Crete and the essence of travelling

I've now spent some decent time in the three largest, most popular towns in Crete that are all conveniently situated up here in the north and relatively close to each other. If the idea of visiting a popular Greek island for a week or two interests you, and exploring several other cities is also on high on your itinerary, please know that Crete ticks all these boxes with the the bus/coach service at your disposal. Whilst ...

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A return to the beautiful Balkans

On first impression, from the airport bus ride to the city centre, there are other words that I would put well before 'beautiful' when describing my current location of Thessaloniki; Greece's second largest metropolis. If you were wondering where Thessaloniki is, wonder no more. Here it is and in relation to Crete; the island I have just returned from two warm weeks later.   ...

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A Saturday and Sunday stroll in Thessolaniki

The weekend has provided myself and the local Thessalonikians with some welcome rays of sunshine. Don't be fooled though, it still is chilly in the day and come of an evening, I can fully testify chilly turns to a very bitter cold. Being British, I could withstand the day time chill just fine in long pants and a jumper and so naturally it amuses me to see the locals wrapped heavily in big coats, scarfs and woolly hats! To be fair, the pro ...

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Magical Meteora: Saving the best 'till last...

During these 'unlikely travels', together we've seen some of Europe's most breathtaking and awe-inspiring works and wonders. As I enter my final week you might have expected this to be the time for me to rest, relax and generally reflect and philosophize on these last eight months. Besides, what would be the chances of me providing you further visual delights from slap-bang in the middle of Greece in early December? More ...

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Meteora to Delphi - what a schlep!

Dear readers, It saddens me to say this will be the last explorative post as I envisage only a couple of philosophical and reflective writings for my final few days. As sad as that might be, you have my permission to chuckle at the fact that my last day of exploration proved to be one of the most tedious, transportationally. Seriously though, eight months later and literally ...

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Has travel changed me? Have I had fun?

If the first question I'm asked from people back home is 'Have you had fun?', I might find it hard to hide my disappointment.  You see in that instant you will have unintentionally and inadvertently informed me that you are clueless and somewhat ignorant to the reasons behind my undertaking of such a journey. 'Fun', I'm assuming, is the primary objective for teenagers and gap-year students travelling ready to em ...

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So what is Bucharest really like?

Did anyone see my Mother's most recent comment from my picture-heavy post: 'A weekend in Bucharest'?"...I must admit I will be at peace when I know you have left Romania. Well Mother dearest      (and to everyone else), I can now report back that yours and other people's over-cautiousness need not have been. When I went to Paris last year for a three day break, less than 10 minute ...

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Day 2: An Italian education...

I had a fantastic day today but the formula remains incredibly simple: Mid 20s sunshine, a mixture of on-foot and bus transportation, some tunes, a positive mental attitude and a plan. Oh...and being wined and dined for by two Italian ladies... Uncle Andrea - you underestimated me in your last comment by stating singular, not plural :-) With regards a plan, thanks to a comment from a cousin I didn't need to p ...

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Climbing those almighty 1400 Kotor steps!

Was a little knackering I can admit. Don't get me wrong, if you consider yourself fit or even modestly fit you won't struggle with this climb and at worst, you'll break a sweat. I, however, rarely     sweat due to a lack of any high level physical exertion and so it was strange sensation to see liquid based droplets forming on and around my 'looky looky man' Ray Bans. I also stopped a number of times for photos so that made ...

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A day trip to Dubrovnik (Croatia)

So as I covered in some depth in my last post, the whole point of me originally visiting Trebinje was to visit Dubrovnik and today that finally happened. The owners of the hostel put myself and Edmund in touch with a local guy - Svaki Dan - who works in Dubrovnik but lives here in Trebinje so he commutes most days. He charges a small fee for transportation (we're talking less than £2 each way!) and pretty much guarantees y ...

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Spending an entire day with strangers...

Is what travelling is all about, right? Although I am happy to say that the experience was positive and it turned into quite a day as you'll soon see. 1) So I was resting on my hostel bed with my computer after some good food and drink earlier on, when the chap occupying the bed next to me arrives after his night out.  He introduces himself as Morgan - a Frenchman. A French 'Morgan' - that's a first for me. He settles in, brushes ...

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Sarajevo: Part 2

This is my last (and fourth) night in Sarajevo. Don't let the fact that I am only assigning two posts to Sarajevo fool you into thinking this is representative of there being little to do (or learn)   here as that would be wholly inaccurate. On the contrary, this place has so much a person could write about but that would be the job of a clued-up historian, not little ol' me. Be assured there are countless tours available and they are cer ...

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My inaugural backpacker experience

I've had a strangely pleasant 24 hours but for someone who claims to be super-organized, would you believe that I could turn up in Greece (night time I might add) not knowing where I was staying???       Well, that's actually what happened... Various important document print-outs were one of my many remaining tasks I planned on doing the day before I departed but it transpired the lads had other plans and throu ...

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Look! It's Nick the Greek

I left Athens with a heavy heart as I was leaving Greece so soon having had such a great week there. In saying that, I happen to have landed on the only other Greek-speaking piece of land in the World. So who is 'Nick the Greek?'. He is someone that I used to work with at Essential Computing. He works in the marketing department and originates from Cyprus and his fiancé, from Poland. They both consider Cyprus their hom ...

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Exploring Zadar

It feels like every city I've visited is steeped in so much history that is often too much for me to fully understand. From scratching the surface, Zadar appears to be no different but these days if   you're visiting here the likelihood is that its as a result of imagery like this (image not mine). ...

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And they said Frankfurt was 'boring'...

Well they were wrong. Now, it might be a number of other adjectives but boring isn't at the top of the list as you're soon going to see. It would seem that Frankfurt gets labelled boring partly because it is a financial hub (also the fifth largest city) but partly because there's not plenty of things for tourists to see and do. Okay, that's an understatement: it's the largest financial centre in Europe and there's hardly& ...

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A familiar face from Belgrade, Serbia

I met THIS young Englishman named Ben in Belgrade several months ago and placed him on my 'Friends along the way' page. He is studying both French and German (I know, right) and is part of the ERAMAUS program. Erasmus provides opportunities for students to study or undertake a work placement abroad as par ...

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Come to Gdansk for a weekend break!

Worked hard this year? Craving some end-of-season sunshine? Don't want to pay hundreds or even thousands of pounds for the privilege? Look no further than Gdansk, Poland. As we know, from the second week of September prices generally plummet with the kids returning to school and the tourist season largely over for another year. This then, is a perfect time for you to head to north Poland for a short w ...

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Love conquers all

Sadly this doesn't involve me but as it's such a wonderful story, I felt compelled to write about it and share this short romantic tale with all of you.  Perhaps it might even make you smile if you're having a bad day. It involves the owners of the hostel/b&b I've stayed at this first week here in Palermo. To start the story we need to rewind only 18 months ago. ...

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My regrets in Croatia and a good deed!

This is the first blog post in over 50 that is not picture-centric. For your attention I'll attempt to deliver you a remotely amusing story at my own self-deprecating expense. But first, some regrets. It amazes me to think that in nearly three months of travel and tens of cities later, it is only now in Croatia that I have formed three substantial regrets and they've all been in this last week or two and so in no particular order: ...

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