Croatia 2017

Croatia 2017

I am by no means at the age where I am prepared to say no to a family holiday because of work or family commitments. In fact, I’m hoping I never get there. Just this morning my grandma and I were in fits of laughter thinking about me tagging along in my thirties, only with a few more little people to bring along! When we were discussing a family holiday at the very beginning of this year we were trying to decide between Lake Como in Italy, or Croatia as I had been on a quick stop to Dubrovnik the year before. Due to my operation getting nearer and nearer, we knew that we needed to go somewhere really nice where we could all completely rest and just enjoy being together. I absolutely adore the lakes in Italy, but decided on Dubrovnik as I felt I hadn’t quite seen enough of it the year before. Before I knew it everything was booked and the countdown began! When going away with my family, I leave everything to them and just turn up at the start with a case and high hopes for an epic week away!

When I visited Croatia last year I instantly fell in love. I couldn’t get over its original beauty and very subtle atmosphere. I knew I had to go back and see more. 

With most holidays I always have a few things planned in my head to do and a rough idea of the how the week is going to plan out. With this one, the only thing I knew was I needed a rest. Everything has been a bit manic in the past few weeks, finishing up things with work, going away quite a bit and trying to get everything in the flat organised. A rest was also very much what I needed mentally. With my operation, I am starting to feel very anxious as the days go on – it is a weird feeling that I have never really experienced before. I needed some time away, to just enjoy the little things and being somewhere different.

Weather

According to the locals, we were extremely lucky with the weather. All except one day we had complete blissful sunshine, clear skies and the perfect tanning weather. I tried to avoid tanning as I am always so terrified of getting burnt. We were quite surprised about the weather, as really it is coming to the end of the season for them. On the one day we had bad weather it was absolutely hilarious. It was typically the one day we went into Dubrovnik and it was quite astounding. In the morning it was a little grey, but not too cold or raining. We counted our blessings really as we didn’t want to walk around the city in blazing heat and sunshine! We stopped for a coffee at about midday, in a little cobbled alleyway right in the main Street of Dubrovnik. We sat for about ten minutes drinking our Cappuccinos and having a chat, before the rain started. Honestly, I have never heard anything like it. The stairs behind us started to become a full on waterfall and the water was gradually getting higher higher up the chair legs we were sat on. There was cover over us, so for a while we just sat and admired it before deciding to have a glass of wine inside… we couldn’t go anywhere so why not have a drink?! The rain did not stop for a good hour and a half! After managing to escape I obviously managed to get my hands on a new handbag and some jewellery before hearing back to the hotel! The next day, our last day, was beautiful sunshine and clear skies. I’m assuming for the time of year, we were very lucky with the weather. 

Accommodation

 

The hotel was absolutely perfect and had everything we needed. The room was spacious, with a beautiful view and very comfortable bed which was important to me as I knew I wanted to sleep a lot! There was obviously the beach right outside, outdoor and indoor pool, spa facilities and a very good treatment spa. I treated myself to a massage and a facial at either end of the holiday as I couldn’t see any reason why not!

I also managed to persuade my grandma to have her very first ever pedicure, which she thoroughly enjoyed. I think I might have finally converted her! There was also a fully equipped gym, which I stupidly forgot my trainers for so couldn’t use, as well as being able to hire bikes. I hired a bike on the very last day and went for an hour around the coast with my grandad. The view was absolutely priceless. I would thoroughly recommend this hotel if you want to be somewhere to just rest and enjoy the beauty of Croatia right in front of you. 

Dubrovnik

I feel like I have been to a lot of cities during my life, but not one has ever compare to Dubrovnik. Seeing it for the second time, I just couldn’t believe the sheer originality and beauty of it. The architecture is absolutely incredible and it seems like there will always be more to see. Obviously, Dubrovnik’s claim to fame now (apart from in is own right) is that it was used to film a lot of Game of Thrones. However it is portrayed in the programme, that is exactly what you get when you see the city. Everywhere you look there is something interesting to see and something you will want to photograph. It has a very relaxed atmosphere, as well as something for everybody. There are so many little boutiques, amazing bars and restaurants as well as the most gorgeous little market. I absolutely love it and would love to go again, maybe for a mini city break. 

Food & Drink

I hate to even admit how much I have eaten during this trip. I don’t actually think I have had one bad meal? I don’t really know what I was expecting, but I think I got way more in terms of quality than I thought I would. The hotel provided breakfast and dinner which obviously made life much easier. Breakfast was always a selection of fresh fruit and pastries, as well as bacon and eggs or choice of omelette. I think the scrambled eggs were the best I have ever had it a hotel. Every morning I started with some eggs and a cappuccino – my fuel for the day, not that I stopped eating very much. For lunch we would leave the hotel to find a little restaurant, which was only ever less than two minutes away.

They did the basics like pizza, pasta and a lot of seafood. I absolutely loved each lunch time, and became completely addicted to the most amazing Greek Salad! My grandma and I also became quite accustomed to having a Hendricks Gin and Tonic with each meal. They were bloody delicious to say the least! Dinner was always a buffet, again with such a varied selection. I usually have very low expectations for buffet food, but as far as a buffet goes it was absolutely fine. It was nice to always start with a fresh salad of some description and maybe have more of an option? As we were having a pretty relaxed holiday, it was also nice as it was a bit more casual and easier when we all wanted an early night. The food in Dubrovnik was also really good. Everything was delicious and I couldn’t believe the value for money. 

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To visit the website of the hotel we stayed in, click the link here.

 

A Quick Trip to Geneva

A Quick Trip to Geneva

Last week a really good friend of mine and I went to Geneva for a few days. It was a much needed girly trip to somewhere neither of us had been before. It was never really somewhere that I had really thought of going to before, purely because I don’t actually know many people who have been there, or perhaps just voiced that they have been there. When she mentioned it, to begin with it was just a great opportunity for a much needed girls trip away, however as the time approached, I was getting more and more excited about the location. The images I had seen online were so beautiful, and I was really excited to be going somewhere different.

 

The city was vibrant, with beautiful views and a very Parisian feel without the manic number of people trying to roam the streets.

We landed up going late on the Monday night, so had three whole days to enjoy the city and explore everything we had heard about. Our accommodation was actually in France, just over the border, and we stayed in a little village which was very ‘ski chalet vibes’. It was so beautiful, to be surrounded by the glorious mountains and scenery, with a short journey into the busy city. We landed up booking accomodation quite late, which is why 

 we were quite far out, but in the end it turned out for the best. My face when the taxi driver asked if we wanted to go to France was priceless. However, once I understood our location, and how close it was, I felt a million times better! I think all your feeling are just heighted by tiredness and stress at points like this, as quite frankly the only place you want to be is in bed, ready to enjoy your trip!

Each day we stayed quite close to the city, never venturing out too far. We wanted to make the most out of it and try not to miss anything. In terms of what we say, it was a lot of walking around, slowly taking in the view and enjoying the sheer beauty of the location. The first day we headed straight to the lake in the middle of the city, as we wanted to see the famous fountain.  If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen my hilarious boomerang dancing with the fountain in the background?! It was such an amazing thing to see, and we landed up spending a long time admiring it purely because it was so pretty and so mesmerising to watch. We then went on the huge wheel, on the side of the lake which gives you a beautiful view of the whole city from up high. To be honest, those wheels always make me feel so uneasy, but I know for a fact how amazing the views always are. This was the point that I think the two of us got over the stress of the travelling and our accommodation and really started to enjoy the holiday. Seeing everything from up high made us excited to continue exploring and enjoy everything Geneva has on offer. Definitely something I would recommend if you visit the city!

On the second day, we headed onto the water via boat. The sun was shining perfectly, and we knew instantly we wanted to see the city from a completely different angle. I absolutely love going on boat journeys – they completely relax me and just make me completely enjoy the scenery and look at everything without getting distracted. Being on the water also makes me so happy, so this was definitely something we had to do. My friend was listening to the audio that you could download via your phone, and was really getting into all the amazing facts and everything. I just wanted to sit and simply watch everything and everyone going by.

I adored this part of the trip!

Walking around the city itself, we walked a lot around all the shops – all the chains that you will find in every city, from the like of H&M to Louis Vuitton. For me, this was obviously great as I am definitely a girl who loves to shop! I did leave this until the last day though 😉 We fell from coffee shop to clothes shop over and over again! It wasn’t until the end of our trip when I landed up splurging a little bit, including some lovely accessories from H&M, a new jacket which is just gorgeous from Zara, as well as a Longchamp bag which I have wanted for so long! I have always loved the look of them, and wanted one to use simply as   a ‘practical’ handbag. However, I may have gone a little mad when I found Gucci on the high street. When I bought my black Gucci belt in March I was completely in love with it, and still love it and wear it just as much now as I did then, which is why I have wanted another one since. I saw the smaller version online, in a simple nude colour and knew one day I had to own it… I just wasn’t expecting to own it so soon! I saw it the moment we got in the shop and had to try it on. Basically, there was no way I was leaving the shop without it! So yes, that was a pretty good end to the trip!

In terms of food and drink, I cannot even tell you how many calories I consumed during this trip… it is so embarrassing! Before going, everyone stressed to me how careful we needed to be in terms of cost with food and drink, as obviously Geneva is the most expensive city in the world at the moment. This made me very aware of it from the beginning, however, I don’t know if it is because I had been warned but I really didn’t think it was that bad.

Obviously, it wasn’t cheap, but I would never say a meal cost more than it would have done in London or Paris for example?

I don’t think we spent more on food than we would have done anywhere else, and the only reason we did land up spending quite a bit is because we chose to keep stopping for food and coffee! Honestly, we were unbelievable… but I LOVED it!! We actually landed up eating a lot of Italian food, such as Gnocchi and Pizza. I had the best pizza of my life one evening in a family run Italian restaurant! All the Swiss chocolates, pastries and cakes were out of this world, and a strong memory from the trip will definitely be the amazing food I landed up eating constantly. A highlight for me, as well as for my friend who is very Italian, was the coffee. In England you cannot buy a good coffee… it doesn’t exist! Every single day we drank coffee after coffee, always started the day with a perfect espresso from the local patisserie in the French ski village. It was incredible, and I cannot even explain how much I am missing coffee right now!

Overall, the trip was amazing. I absolutely fell in love with Geneva and would love to go back one day to visit all the places we didn’t have time to see which just look absolutely gorgeous.

 

 

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.