Introverts and travelling

A friend of mine has decided to make the best decision and take some time off to do some extended travelling. We are both natural introverts and therefore we need to put some strategies in place.

So this blog is for my fellow introverts who are worried about going solo travelling.

  • Be you– so first and foremost be true to your personality. You are going to meet a lot of extroverts-great for them! Don’t try and copy them-were not good at it.
  • Find purpose– it can be hard for some introverts to speak to strangers (although it gets really easy the longer your travel on your own) so find a commonality. There are a few strategies here: do community work like my friend, consider a group travel trip, join group activities and/or speak about possible trips/activities in the area, I have created so many new friendships by asking have you done X and ended up doing it with them.
  • Recharge-remember to take ‘me’ time. Introverts energy and best ideas come when we take some time out. I personally find getting into nature and hiking by myself essential.
  • Change-brace yourself for a series of different friends. It natural for us to find a few people and build deep connections. This can be dangerous as you need to keep moving forward and getting the best out of your journey.
  • Just say no– there will be some strong extroverts who will naturally want to take charge. Just remember this is your adventure so if you don’t want to do something don’t be worried about saying no.

Introverts please write in if you need some advise based on my own persoanl experience.

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Barcelona…a wee guide

In my experience cities can often have two major effects; they can drain or energise you. Barcelona makes you feel like the Duracell bunny.

Stroll out after a siesta around 9ish (yes life starts late in Barcelona) hit up Carrer de Blai for some tapa, strike up a conversation with locals and see where the night takes you. I know it sounds hard, especially if you are on your own but its the best way to experience Barcelona. If you want to do a little cheat go on to the couchsurfing app and there are loads of lovely locals wanting to grab a drink.

So I personally would just suggest wondering around and seeing where it leads. However I know my readers like little tips, so here are my favourite spots:

  • Bunkers Del Carmel-for a great view of the city head here for sunrise. There’s nothing quite like a Barcelona City sunrise (sunset tends to be more social and crowded).
  • Sagdrada Familia– I don’t usually recommend mass tourist paid spots, but Sagdrada Familia is the exception to the rule. It is a truly marvellous architectural delight, and has become my number one Cathedral.
  • Parc de Monjuic-As readers know I love nature and this is the closest you really get in Barcelona. With the winding pathways its another chance for a great view of the city.

If it doubt just get to Barcelona… You won’t regret the decision.

 

 

Barcelona-first impressions take two

Hola Chicos its Barcelona time.

I have been in Barcelona now for three days, I will write a little guide on what to do whilst here shortly but wanted to give some initial thoughts.

Personally Barcelona is one of my favourite European cities. I have been finding it hard however to quantify why! On paper Barcelona in itself doesn’t have anything particularly unique, don’t get me wrong there are plenty of amazing sights but nothing that truly stands out. The people again are amazing but there are a couple of countries that I prefer. So I have come to the conclusion its the combination of the ethos, the cool architecture, the glorious food and chilled people.

So how best to experience Barcelona?

Daytime: Go to a high point like Parc de Montjuic find something in the distance that looks interesting and head in that direction. Barcelona is great city to get lost in and as you never know what’s round the corner.

Night time: Its all about food and fiesta. Two tips here don’t go to dinner before 9pm as places you would want to go e.g places local go to will be empty and make sure to strike up a conversation with locals to find all the best spots.

What’s your next adventure?

This is part 2 of the places around the world I truly love. Check out part 1 here

Cathedral Cove, New Zealand: One of the first places I truly fell in love with. Its remote, has the natural beauty that makes New Zealand such a special country and is truly peaceful.

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Copenhagen, Denmark: if you ever wondered what a place full of beautiful people is like head here. Copenhagen is a perfect weekend gateway-its cool, a little funky and has some great food markets.

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Great Oceon Road, Australia-Victoria: this was towards the end of my journey and I started to feel a little travel fatigue until I came here. Some of the best natural oceanic formations I have seen.

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Budapest, Hungary: Europe has some truly amazing architecture. In my opinion the best in the world. To find the best of the best head to Budapest. Take in the amazing sights in the morning, head to the bathes in the afternoon and finish with a river cruise at night-perfect.

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Interlaken, Switzerland: If I am forced to choose my favourite place in the world then Interlaken has my heart. What can I say but WOW. Everything is just beautiful from the buildings, the hiking, the world class views and the friendly locals.

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Where will your next adventure be?

 

 

What’s your next adventure? The world in photos

I have been back in England for a week now from the most amazing 11 months (30 countries) of my life. I have finally sorted through my photos and wanted to inspire your next adventure.

Plitvice Lake, Croatia-For an amazing hike to a range of fitness levels no place does beauty like Croatia.

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Mt Taranki, New Zealand– Are you fit? Then Mt Taranki is the one for you. An extremely difficult day hike but once you climb past the clouds its pure serenity.

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Gibbon Experience, LoasStill a big kid? then this is for you. Spend your days ziplining through a jungle and your evenings sleeping in giant treehouses

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Rome, Italy– For the history lovers there really is no place like Rome.

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New York City, USA– Not my favourite city, but one that has to be done once in your lifetime.

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Waya LaiLai Island, Fiji– The friendliest people on the planet. There’s no better place on the planet for a relaxing time.

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Rotorua, New Zealand– If you can get over the smell of Suplher and want something a little different then this is the place for you.

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Srebrenica Genocide Memorial, Bosnia– For something different check out this memorial. Its interesting but extremely sobering, so not for the faint hearted. Make sure to fully explore Bosnia afterwards as an amazing country.

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Want to know more about any of these locations then check out my guides or ask me a question in the comment box.

 

Sydney….some hidden gems

To be honest when I got to Sydney I wasn’t particularly impressed. It felt like any generic medium sized city in the world. It probably didn’t help that I loved Melbourne so much and was making comparisons.

However the fact that Sydney is a Coastal city gives it some absolutely lovely walks especially in the Aussie summer. There is a whole host of walks you can do but I would personally recommend a few:

Also for a good selection of asian food check out Spice Alley (BYOB as well).

Best of a year of travelling

So I have seen a lot in the last year. To round it all off I wanted to share the best of best with you. Peace out.

Best eat– Mary May’s Tea Room in Atlanta: Chicken pot pie with mac’n’ cheese followed by peanut butter cake with oreo crust
Best view– Interlaken in Switzerland
Best party town-Barcelena
Best drink-Dark and Stormy from Hamilton,Canada
Best hostel– Nomadas in Merida, Mexico
Best experience-Gibbon experience in Loas
Best people-Fiji they have the best rythym on the planet
Most tranquil place in the world-Top of Mt Edgmont (New Zealand) just after the ice.

Melbourne- a real good time

I have been lucky enough to spend about two weeks exploring Melbourne and have come to the conclusion it is one my favourite new cities. It is diverse both in terms of urban verse nature and its people, has a great transport system and one of the most relaxed cities I have visited.

I know most people wont be lucky enough to spend so long in this great city, so I wanted to share a few must do’s that are Melbourne unique.

  • Shrine of Remembrance and Botanical gardens: this area combines the second biggest botanical garden in the world and a beautiful war memorial/museum. On a sunny day combine with a picnic its a great day out.
  • Tram 35: if you want to get to know Melbourne quick get on the free tram 35 and take a circuit of the city. It takes about 45 minutes and you will have your bearings in no time.
  • Gelato at Pipapidos: there’s always a line but it goes quick; this Gelato was on par with what I had in Florence.
  • ACMI: I love a good free museum and this audio/visual one is the best of its kind. It is super interactive, good for all ages and has some super cool gadgets to play with.
  • Brighton Beach: With its colourful sheds this is the perfect place to see sunset over the city.

Other goodies in Melbourne: hit one of the numerous roof top bars, visit the Victoria Art Centre, visit Melbourne museum and the surrounding beautiful park,
and/or hit Fitzroy for some good eats and drinks.

Outside of Melbourne: the Great Ocean road is a must do-with some of the amazing views Victoria has to offer.

A travellers rant

In the last year travelling around the world I have met some amazing people. As I have been mainly staying in backpackers they tend to be a newer generation of people, not my own generation Y. This has been a great experience on the whole as they see the same things very differently but there is one thing I really don’t understand…

You have chosen to travel the world and are seeing some of the most amazing sights; both natural and manmade. However on the whole the first thought is to get a photo/selfie and move on.

Don’t get me wrong I like a good photo to capture the moment but after I have taken in the sights and thought about what I am seeing.

This was never more apparent when I recently visited the Great Ocean Road, which has some of the most amazing sea rock formations. People literally spent 30 seconds taking photos and moving on. WHY, WHY, WHY! Think you are seeing millions of years of rock formations creating a truly stunning visual experience and I assure you pictures wont do it justice.

Mini rant over. So young people, stop and enjoy the experience then take a photo. Your experience will be so much richer with a lasting memory.

Merry Christmas around the world

I want to wish all my readers a Merry Christmas tomorrow or the next day depending on which time zone your on. Like many of my readers you will be spending it travelling so in that spirit this is Merry/Happy Christmas from my favourite countries around the world.

Czech-Veselé Vánoce, New Zealand Maori- Meri Kirithimete, Spain/Mexican-Feliz Navidad and Switzerland (Switz German)-Schöni Wiehnachte.

If your interested in finding out more about Santa check out my article on my latest blog stuff I think I know