Friday, 9 December 2016

London | The Breakfast Club Hoxton

 I'd heard great things about The Breakfast Club, and when Georgia (Mapped Out Blog) suggested we go there on a girly day out to London, I jumped at the chance! We decided to head to the Hoxton branch, although they have quite a few cafes in London as it was easy for all of us to get to. We met Candela in the queue which The Breakfast Club is so famed for...

Whilst we didn't have to wait long, be prepare to queue as it is a very popular destination for locals and tourists alike. Unfortunately it was raining, but it didn't dampen our spirits as we knew what awaited us inside would be worth the wait! We eventually got in, and were lead to our table. The decoration inside is minimal but homely; it isn't one of those places where you almost feel afraid to move because everything is so white and clinical.

Georgia and I opted for the ice tea which was delicious! It had a fresh taste of mint and lemon and was the perfect drink for brunch. It was so refreshing, and came in such a gorgeous bottle as well. It's all in the detailing.

Drinks on the table, we all placed our food orders. Being super adventurous, we all opted for the Pancakes with Bacon and Maple Syrup. We were in for a treat when a huge stack of pancakes arrived for each of us. They were American style pancakes which worked perfectly with the salty bacon and super sweet maple syrup. At £9, they certainly weren't the cheapest breakfast I've ever had, but they were definitely one of the best!

The Breakfast Club is the perfect venue if you are looking for something different in London. It's delicious, not awfully expensive and has a lovely chilled out vibe. I think part of the reason you queue is because they don't overcrowd the cafe itself - there's no rushing necessary which is ideal when you are catching up with two of your favourite girls!

Have you ever been to The Breakfast Club?

Friday, 2 December 2016

10 Reasons To Go To Turkey

 I fell in love with Turkey on my first visit back in 2011. It's a gorgeous sunny country with some of the friendliest people I have met. The weather is divine, the food is delicious and I love the Turkish culture. I'd recommend Turkey if you are looking for somewhere to completely switch off and soak up a different culture. It's easy to fall in love with Turkey, especially if you go off the beaten track!

The People

You may argue that of course the people are friendly, they want your business - but they really are lovely. One of the restaurant owners (who also ran the boat trip we went on) was very helpful, and really looked out for me and my friend who were in Turkey alone for two weeks; going to the lengths of picking us up from our villa to ensure we were safe which was very nice of him! Everyone is so happy and friendly.

The Markets

Losing myself in a Turkish market is one of my favourite things to do. Whilst the market in Kusadasi is a place I find incredibly intimidating, the market in Davutlar is glorious. There's fresh food to the right, and every kind of knick knack you can imagine to the left - from clothes to door knobs and olive oil. They also sell the most incredible Turkish pancakes called Gozleme. Divine!

The Food

The food in Turkey is delicious, and one of my favourite things about visiting the country. We buy copious amounts of fresh fruit and vegetables from the local stall which is owned by a family who have set up under a tree near our villa! It's so cheap, delicious and good for you too. I love the meatballs and chicken shish that are so typically sold in Turkey.

The Beaches

Stuning sandy beaches are one of Turkey's jewels. I'm not normally a huge fan of spending time on the beach itself, but in Turkey I'm always up for a trip to the beach. There's sunbeds, water sports if you fancy it and plenty of restuarants. The sunsets are always some of the most spectular I have ever seen, especially with the back drop of the mountains behind the sea!

The Sea

 Whenever we're in Turkey we always head out to sea at least once on a boat trip. There are quite a few tours that go out - one of them has a foam party whilst the others are much quieter and we always pick the more relaxing trips! It's so peaceful to be out at sea and enjoying the sunshine whilst seeing some of the stunning scenery of the local national park. It truly is amazing, and I'd definitely recommend a boat trip if you are in Turkey.

The Mountains

Where we stay in Turkey there is a gorgeous national park in the next village along from ours. It's so nice to see all the mountains and you can even see the Greek island of Samos from the beach! Truly stunning and nice to have a mixture of different sceneries to explore.

The Language

The Turkish language is so different to many of the languages I usually hear when I am travelling and exploring, but it is easily one of my favourites. I love the sound of it, and find it so interesting to listen to. Whilst I haven't learnt much Turkish, I do know a few phrases which is another thing I love about exploring a  new place.

The Weather

We always tend to go to Turkey in late August, although one year we were there until mid-September and the sun was still blazing hot - around 30°C every day. Thankfully there is a bit of a sea-breeze due to being fairly close to the coast which is lovely when you are exploring the local towns and markets. I love the sunshine, and Turkey always delivers!

The Public Transport

A Dolmus is effectively a mini-bus which is used as a public bus. Whilst it may not sound that exciting, trust me - you are wrong. Travelling by Dolmus is inexpensive and great fun! Each driver tends to decorate his own Dolmus in his own unique way - so I've been in ones focused on Religious decoration, whilst others are full of football memorabilia - I love it! It adds a personal touch.

The Wildlife

I have seen some of the most amazing things in Turkey; normally when I am on the boat trip. It was the first time I ever saw Dolphins in the wild which was truly incredible. They were swimming under the boat, and alongside us - which was insanely cool. We also saw Turtles on our first trip which was pretty special.

Turkey is a stunning country, and well worth a visit. I'm hoping to visit Istanbul as I'd love to see somewhere a bit more built up in Turkey rather than the coast. Maybe one day I'll learn a bit more of the language too, but for now you'll definitely find me in one of the markets!

Have you ever been to Turkey?

Friday, 25 November 2016

What Are You Thankful For?

 Yesterday was Thanksgiving across the pond and it is a holiday that I definitely wish we had here in the UK. I've never underestimated the power of being thankful, but sometimes I think it's far too easy to focus on the negatives. Whilst I was at uni, I started up a gratitude journal so that I could remember to be thankful at least once a day, and nearly two years later I am so thankful for this little journal that stays beside my bed!

I am thankful for the fact that I have a job, a car so I can get to this job and a warm home. I am thankful that everyday there is food on the table, and that this is not a worry for me. I am thankful that my parents have welcomed Dan and I back into my family home so we can save for a deposit to buy our own house. I am thankful to even have this opportunity when so many others do not even have a family home.

I am thankful for Dan, my best friend. I am thankful that he puts up with my awful moods, and my unhappiness at times. I am thankful that he is always there to lift me up, make me laugh and make me feel safe. I am thankful for his kindness, and his passion. I am thankful that we found each other at such a young age and that we have been given so many amazing opportunities to see the world together!

I am thankful for my wonderful family, all of whom are so supportive. I am thankful for the love my parents have always given me and my sister, and the fact that we are incredibly close as a family. I am thankful for my younger sister who is like a best friend to me. I am thankful that I have all four of my fantastic grandparents, at the age of 23 this is a rare and wonderful thing. I am thankful for their kindness, wisdom and their instant ability to make me laugh and cheer me up! I am thankful for my wider family, and the connection we all have.

I am thankful for my wonderful friends. The friends who have accepted me for me, who lift me up and who help me to deal with my anxiety. I am especially grateful for the friends who are there to listen to my embarassing stories which should definitely NOT be shared on this blog. I am thankful for the support they give me when things are tough, and the hilarious times we've had.

I am thankful for being born in the UK, for all of it's flaws. I am thankful that I wake up, and I do not hear the sound of explosions and see the signs of warfare. I am thankful that I was born in a country where I largely have an insane amount of freedom. I am thankful that I am not living in fear because of war and poverty.

What Are You Thankful For?