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What to Wear in India

Of the countries I’ve been to, I loved my Indian wardrobe the best. My biggest piece of advice, no matter where you go, is to shop locally. My dream is to one day arrive in a place like Thailand or India with a completely empty backpack and purchase all of my clothing there; not only is it usually much cheaper than clothes in Canada or the UK, but you’ll have a lot more fun with your fashion. Here are a few of the things I wore while in India.

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Why I Love Limerick (and Why You Should, Too)

I didn’t know much about Limerick; I knew about the famous five-line poems and Angela’s Ashes, but that was about it. I had actually seen the outskirts of Limerick years ago as a teenager, when I cycled through a few Irish counties on a family holiday. I also knew, vaguely, that Limerick had a bit of reputation in Ireland and elsewhere. Because of it, I think that some people choose Dublin or Galway or Cork as a holiday destination instead.

So, mind open and camera ready, I was eager to see Limerick for myself. I made sure to go there with a blank slate, to let the city write its own narrative for me. And, in only a few short days, I found a whole lot to love about Limerick. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider going there yourself.

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The Perfect Gifts for a Traveller

Since leaving my hometown, I have had some odd Christmases. There was the hungover McDonald’s meal last year with my sister; a day on the beach in Borneo springs to mind, too, as does a barbecue on a warm Christmas in New Zealand. This year, I’ll be spending the holidays in Nicaragua with my family. It’s the first time my sister, brother, and mum have been together for a Christmas day in seven years, and I can’t wait.

The trip is obviously the most amazing gift I could ever ask for. But, if I was going to be completely greedy, here are a few things I would put on a Christmas list. Some of them I already am lucky enough to have, and so would love to give a friend or family member, but these are the things I think make perfect gifts for travellers.

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When I Don’t Feel Like Being a Solo Traveller

I have a bit of a secret: the main reason I travel solo so often is not because it’s my favourite way to travel… it’s because I couldn’t find anyone to go with me. I feel like a bit of a fraud saying that because I do so often identify with that “solo female traveller” label. And don’t get me wrong; I wouldn’t take back my months travelling solo through Europe, Asia, Central America, or South America for anything. I love travelling on my own, and will continue to plan solo trips. Solo travel allows you to discover things you may not have discovered if you were with someone else; it makes you hyperaware, much more attentive to the details around you. It is challenging and exciting, and, as many people will attest, you are rarely actually alone. Sometimes, though, I don’t want to travel on my own…

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Around the World: Bicycles

I sometimes set strange goals for myself when I travel. One of them is to go on a boat in every country I visit; another is to ride a bicycle in every country I visit. It hasn’t always been the case, but there’s something about riding a bike through a new place that can’t be beat: the bumps in the road, the sights whizzing by, the wind in your hair.

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Why I Love London or: Why London Feels Like Home

I’ve been sighing a lot in London lately. I often talk about how much I love this city on this blog; I wrote a whole post about why it deserves every bit of that love, just over a year ago. In that post, I cited the things to do, the galleries, the people, the restaurants, the markets. And I still stand by every word of that post. From Broadway Market to Saatchi Gallery, to afternoon tea and early morning raves, I’m more in love with this city than ever.

But we all know what love is like. It starts off like fireworks, all oohs and aahs, lust and passion. If we’re lucky, that feeling stays for a while. If we’re really lucky, that feeling stays forever.

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Poppies at the Tower of London

If you live in London, or have travelled there recently, you probably visited the Tower of London to see the poppies. But for those who couldn’t make it, I wanted to share photos from last week, when I saw it for myself. 888, 426 individual ceramic poppies were placed around the Tower of London, one for each British military casualty in the First World War. While it is visually stunning, I was completely overwhelmed by the tragedy it represents.

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Those Nights in the Mongolian Ger

“Here is your pile of wood.” Yul, our guide, pointed to a bin of chopped wood. “The local people use dung, but it is easier for tourists to light this.” He smiled once, a flash of white.

The ger, commonly called a yurt in other parts of the world, was to be our home for the next few nights. Once Yul said his goodbyes, it would just be the two of us, left on our own in the wilds of Mongolia. Although it would just be my mother and I, the ger was the same size as one used for an entire Mongolian family, with three small beds, a desk, and a stove in the middle. Built on top of a cement slab, flooring and carpets had been laid down for comfort. To eat or to use the toilet, we had to walk a few hundred metres to a main lodge. Although there were a few other gers scattered around, we were the only ones brave enough (or stupid enough) to be visiting in late October; frost had already covered parts of the ground, and the trees lost leaves with every gust of wind.

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Best of London: The BB Bakery Bus Tour

I rarely write about Central or West London; nearly all of my previous posts about London have been about my beloved East, where I live. I get the occasional email about things to do in London and I always feel a bit lost on what to recommend, especially if the person writing has never been to the Big Smoke before. While people want to find out about lesser-known places like Broadway Market and the Early Morning Rave, let’s face it: London has some of the greatest sightseeing spots in the world, from Buckingham Palace to Big Ben to Trafalgar Square.

It also has some of the best selections of afternoon tea.

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