Varanasi, the holy city of the Ganga (Ganges) and ghats is an easy place to get lost and maybe even lose yourself. As with most busy cities in India, bazaars and shops are everywhere. Whilst the lanes and bazaars near the Ganga are a nice place to amble around, the holy river of the Ganga and the many ghats that line its banks are the main draw to this photogenic Indian city. In North India this is one of the cities that visitors to really feel India.
Rajasthan and Jaipur conjures up images of the mighty Mughals that ruled much of India from the 16th to 19th century. Today we can still see their influence on Indian culture in Jaipur in the form of art, architecture, food and dance. One of the many great reasons to visit India is due to its cultural diversity and regional differences. Whilst you may need to venture out of Jaipur to see more traditional and authentic Rajasthani culture it’s still a great place to get a taster. Our top 6 things to do in Jaipur:
Staying at a budget hotel called Smyle Inn meant that we were right in the middle of Delhi’s main bazaar, albeit on a street off the main road. With only a short 3 day stay in the capital of India, location was important to squeeze in many things to do in Delhi.
The convenient location meant that we battled our way up and down the main bazaar a few times a day. It proved to be a good training ground for what should be a simple task: walking down a busy street in India.
Our three day stay in Tokyo was short for such a big city but we had other places in Japan to explore such as Kyoto, Koyasan, and Osaka. To get a little local taste of Tokyo in such a short time we enlisted the help of a Tokyo resident to give us a local’s guide to Tokyo the capital city of Japan via Tokyo Free Guide. In a packed half day we visited districts off the beaten path such as Shimokitazawa, Nippori, and Yanaka.
Istanbul has gone through a few hardships of late but it’s an amazing city to explore that is buzzing with culture and flavours making a visit to this beautiful capital city of Turkey most enjoyable.
Istanbul exists over Europe and Asia, divided by the Bosphorus strait and connected by two suspension bridges.
The European side of Istanbul is considered the old city because of its historical significance and you’ll find most of the famous tourist attractions here. The Asian side is more residential, with high street shopping, markets and nightlife.
Here are just 10 of the many top things to do in Istanbul:
Sushi is of course one of Japan’s most famous exports. For lovers of fish, sushi is a beautiful way to enjoy the fresh delicate flavours that only seafood can provide. I love fish and I love sushi, but what if you don’t like fish or sushi? Japanese food has something to offer everyone, pretty much all of which is tasty, some a bit weird, but you’ll be sure to enjoy an amazing adventure of food in Japan.
Japanese food is probably the most palatable of all Asian foods to the west. Simple fresh flavours seasoned with salt and sugar to boost umami. Japanese food is perhaps the Italian cuisine of the Far East in terms of highlighting the flavours of the natural ingredients rather than overpowering them with herbs and spices (although you’ll probably find a bottle of 7 flavour chilli powder – Shichimi containing chilli, sansho, orange peel, black sesame, white sesame, hemp, ginger, and nori) on most restaurant tables for those after a healthy spicy kick).
Japan is a wonderful place to have a food adventure and experience amazing tastes and flavours. Here are some great food options to try in Japan other than sushi.
Travel and food go hand in hand. There is no more accessible way to discover a country’s culture, history and environment than food. We love travel and we love food. I love food so much I jacked in my nicely paid job in digital marketing to become a chef (or try to become a chef) at a lovely London restaurant. Maybe my dream job would be to be a chef travelling the world sampling the diverse flavours the world has to offer. In the meantime I’m still enthralled by travel cooking TV shows where chefs and presenters immerse themselves into local culture and cuisine. Here we round up our favourites and what we think are the best travel cooking TV shows.
Holidays in Iceland have always had a reputation for being on the expensive side, but with Iceland Air’s great flight and accommodation deals and Iceland’s depreciating currency we thought it was a great opportunity to visit the land of waterfalls, fire and ice.
With so much natural beauty to see and do outside of Reykjavik we pondered whether to take the many guided coach tours or to self drive to see the natural beauties around the Golden Circle and the Icelandic Southern Shores.
Researching the Iceland activities and tours we wanted to do, we calculated that it would cost £554 for two people. Pretty expensive, especially when you consider that most of the tours require you to be stuck on a coach for half a day.
We looked into hiring a 4×4 to do our own self drive tour, which surprisingly came out much less than the combination of tours, totalling £311 for 4 days hire including petrol via Thifty. Not only was it cheaper, but we would have more flexibility and could drive off in any direction at a whim (we did get stuck up a mountain though), and we wouldn’t be stuck on a slow coach for most of our time.
The last stop on our whirlwind tour of the Baltics was Krakow, Poland. We caught the smallest plane ever from Lithuania (it even had propellers) and landed in Krakow via Warsaw. We were only in the country for a couple of nights so really had to condense the major things we wanted to see and do in this historical city.
Our main reason for visiting Poland was to see Auschwitz. We whole-heartedly recommend that everyone should go there, but we’re glad we went at the end of our two week trip through the Baltics.
We got to Krakow mid afternoon and the weather was hot, for some reason I never expected Poland to be a warm country so I was pleasantly surprised. We struck gold with our accommodation.
London is a great city to explore whether you’re a traveller, a tourist, or a local. However there is a lot of shit that people still continue to do or see in my lovely home city. If you’re coming to London I implore you to avoid the following, they are some of the worst things to do in London.
The Shit Guide to London
A busy street full of high street shops is one of the most visited “tourist attractions” in London. Why??? If you really want to shop for major brands that can be found pretty much anywhere in the world go to a more spacious and clean place i.e. Westfield. They have one in west London and east London, so there’s no excuse. Plus you won’t be tempted by the hundreds of tacky souvenir shops selling all sorts of crap with the Union Jack or Wills and Kate plastered all over it.
It’s just a bunch of advertising signage that lights up. That is all.