Europe · 30 Days · 72 Moments · July 2018

europe | city breaks, coastlines & a wedding

28 August 2018

the 22 hour journey back seemed to go quicker than expected. I felt bad for the guy next to me from abu dhabi - within the first hour he spilt his whole red wine onto his seat! the trip was more than I could have hoped. I had such a wonderful time travelling with becky and emily and also an amazing time at the wedding.

27 August 2018

the next morning was a very slow one. we watched a couple of disney films before I caught the train to manchester 🚊 I was supposed to couchsurf with this guy but he got a bit weird so I just booked a hotel on the day. it was probably better as I wasn’t feeling the brightest after the wedding. it was a very rainy day. I had a little wander around the northern quarter where I got dinner. I made myself stay awake until 9pm because I had to get up at 5am to get the train to the airport.

25 August 2018

after the ceremony we headed to the barn for the reception. the weather was good perfect as the couple of days prior it had been raining and quite cold. the speeches happened before dinner and hannah’s dad, tom and his brothers spoke. I was sat at a table with tom’s old school friends and their wives who were all nice and so much fun. dinner was delicious, I had a tomato soup, mushroom wellington and three types of pudding. there were fireworks and also a lot of dancing. the party went all the way to midnight 👰🏼🤵🏻
we headed to goldsborough church where hannah’s parents and grandparents had been married. it’s a beautiful little church and was a lovely ceremony. the vicar gave a nice sermon and there was a choir ⛪
the big day arrived. tom stayed at the hotel that most of the guest were staying in town. the bridal party started getting their hair and makeup done at 7:30am 💁🏽‍♀️ I got beth (tom’s sister) to do my hair and had his mum and hannah’s mum try and get me into my dress. I bought it back in february and had gained some weight since then. didn’t think to try it on before the wedding but we made it fit.

24 August 2018

the day before the wedding! I drove with hannah to this small town named silsden to pick up her dress. she tried it on and showed me and I just began to cry - she looked so beautiful! afterwards we headed to the reception venue which is a barn on someone’s property to help set up. when we got back to hannah’s that evening the other bridesmaids came over and we all got our nails done 💅🏾

23 August 2018

the wedding party had to prepare for the big day so I spent the day in york. it’s an old walled city founded by the romans. it’s a really pretty place with lots of history, shops and restaurants. york minster is a absolutely stunning and they have a cool part of town called shambles which is very harry potter-esque. I tried parkin which is a yorkshire gingerbread cake. I was freezing so I looked up the temperature and it’s warmer in brisbane winter right now than yorkshire summer! ❄️

22 August 2018

I packed up my things and headed to kings cross. there I met my friend namita who is also a yoga teacher. she invited me to come to her wedding in december but I just don’t think I’ll be able to afford to go 😭 I met with henry who is hannah’s (the bride’s) brother and we caught the train together to harrogate in yorkshire. it took about two and a half hours and we met everyone at a restaurant. last time I saw everyone in harrogate was christmas in 2016.
I continued the banksy stencil search. the first location I went to I couldn’t find it but they had construction around so perhaps it wasn’t visible. I headed to barbican and found a couple. one of them was quite recent and had a protective piece of over the top of it. the other one as a rat that another artist robbo added his name to it 🐀
on my list of 1000 ultimate experiences was to see a painting named ikb 79. originally it was in the liverpool tate but had been moved to london. the artist uses klein created trademarked his own shade of blue 🔷
I stopped via st. paul’s on my way to tate modern. the day was a lot more grey and cold than the previous ones. classic london. it’s one of the reasons why I hadn’t missed living there anymore 🌫
for my last day in london I had brunch with nicki who was on my sailing boat in croatia and filled her in on all the stories from italy 🇮🇹

21 August 2018

I had organised a dinner with girls who went to ashtak yoga school. I knew two of the girls already but the other two I hadn’t met before. it’s always so nice meeting people who you follow on instagram and facebook and hearing about their experience on the course and what they’re doing now with their yoga 🧘🏽‍♀️
my friend katie was heading to london a few weeks ago so I got her to take my dress for the wedding to her sisters place so I wouldn’t have to carry it around europe. I went there in the morning to pick it up and from there had lunch with one of my past students in kensington. in the afternoon I headed to shoreditch and went on the search for banksy stencils. I found one at a place called cargo bar which is in their beer garden. there was a helicopter one above a fish and chip shop but for some reason they had covered it with a wooden fence so you couldn’t really see it 🚁 from there I met up with my friends from brisbane who were living in london the same time as us but who are all still living there. it was so fun to see everyone and share stories from my travels.

20 August 2018

I surprised my friend ashley by going to one of her yoga classes. she is still teaching some of my old classes that I passed on when I left london 🧘🏽‍♀️ afterwards we went to a vegan cafe and some really yummy food for lunch. I was feeling quite exhausted after so I napped all afternoon before treating camille and james out for dinner as a thank you for letting me stay.

19 August 2018

after all the pizza and pasta I was seriously craving some vegetables so made dinner plans with my friend polly at a vegan ethiopian restaurant 🇪🇹 when polly walked in she started crying straight away which obviously made me cry! it was so nice seeing her. I’d see her at least once a fortnight when I lived in london so it was so bizarre that two years had passed.
in the morning I got the shuttle bus from the main train station to the airport. my flight was delayed but thankfully only by an hour or so ✈️ when I arrived in london I made my way to my friends james & camille’s place in highbury. they have a spare room which is awesome.

18 August 2018

my hotel has a rooftop terrace so I headed up there to watch the sunset. it pretty much had 360 degree views over naples 🌅
my hotel was straight across the square from the main train station. I was a bit nervous to wander around by myself as we had been warned so many times about thieves so I found a pizza place nearby and had an early dinner so it was still light. the menu was completely in italian but I saw the word pesto and went for that. it was the best pizza I had the entire time 🍕
for my last morning with the girls we headed down the other end of sorrento to marina grande where we grabbed lunch. afterwards they walked me to the train station where we said our goodbyes and I headed back to naples 🚊

17 August 2018

we made our way back up to have dinner. I had some delicious housemade pasta and some real tasty panna cotta. the sun began to set as we made our way to the bus stop. there were so many people and only a bus every hour. we didn’t get on but another bus company came so we just paid the extra 10€ to get back. I’d definitely recommend going to positano first then amalfi so you have more of a chance getting a ride back 🍝
we wandered up the streets towards the top to get another cocktail and look over the views. from there we made our way down passing through a couple of shops before getting to the beach. it was so busy with the beach completely covered by a sea of umbrellas 🏖
included in our bus ticket was a ferry ride so we caught it down to positano. it was wonderful getting the views of the coastline from the sea and was a lot quicker than the road ⛴
when we arrived we stopped by the beach to get a spritz then headed up the many stairs to get views over the town. everything is just so picturesque 💛
we caught a bus from sorrento to amalfi. it was so busy that we ended up on the floor again. driving along the coastline had some of the most amazing views I’ve seen. the colourful towns that are built up right along the cliffs did not even seem real. I’m so glad we didn’t hire a car as the roads are so windy and at some points only one car can fit through 💒

16 August 2018

we got some pizza to go and headed down towards the harbour to watch the sunset 🍕 emily and I have a flu so we turned in early to get a food rest before a big day at amalfi.
we headed back up and got some gelato while wandering the streets. it’s a really busy place but is still pleasant. the girls went to get pedicures and head massages while I chilled at the airbnb 🍦
we headed towards leonelli’s beach to check out the sorrento coastline. you can see mount vesuvius in the background. it is stunning. the pops of colour from people swimming and the beach huts really add to the view too 💠 we went down the bottom and had lunch at one of the restaurants by the water.
we realised we had three polka dot outfits in green, white & red like the italian flag. such dedicated tourists 🇮🇹 free coordinating outfits we found a nice hotel to grab some coffee and take in the views.

15 August 2018

we all had a snooze then went out for dinner. we found a lovely place to have pasta that was on the main road and was great for people watching 👀 afterwards we got some gelato and tiramisu to go and walked down to the water. the city is on a massive cliff so we had to catch a lift back up.
we caught the train from naples to sorrento and made our way to our cute little airbnb. sorrento is so much livelier than naples with lots of colour and a cool breeze 🍃

14 August 2018

we made our way to pompeii which is about an hour train ride from naples. we decided to go on a walking tour which was a great decision as the guide was very friendly and insightful. I knew it was going to be a big place but still wasn’t ready for how big it actually was. it was also surreal being in a place that you had heard about since being a kid too 🏺

13 August 2018

hello italy! our airbnb is in an old building in dante’s square. we had a late pizza dinner but didn’t stay out too late as we were pretty tired from the traveling 🇮🇹
we had to catch a bus to the airport which was so hectic. the bus driver was yelling things no one could understand. Ivy on the bus straightaway and saved us seats while the girls out the bags away but then they couldn’t get on the bus. eventually he let them on but that meant our seats were gone so we sat on the floor all the way to the airport 🚌
in the morning we went on a sea kayaking tour. we stopped at a spot to go snorkelling and cliff dive. the guide told us not to jump from one side as it was dangerous but he did it and hit his head. there was blood everywhere and we had to call an ambulance. he was very calm about it and was laughing but it was very worrying. he had to go off to hospital so we had to make our own way back and take his kayak back too 🛶

12 August 2018

we had booked a tour to plitvice lakes which is about a three hour drive away from split. we were expecting a bus but we must have been the only booking so we got a private car which was so much better. it’s a unesco world heritage listed site that has 16 lakes and is the largest national park in croatia. the water super clear but are also beautiful shades of blue because of the limestone & dolomites rocks. it was super busy though so there were lines waiting to take pictures at certain points. I’d recommend if you can to get there as early as possible 🏞

11 August 2018

we met up with nicki to go for a walk up marjan hill at sunset. there was beautiful views over split and the sea. after we got back down we had to say goodbye to nicki as she was flying back to london the next morning 🌅
we explored diocletian’s palace which is a fortress like palace built for the roman emperor diocletian. inside is now filled with lots of restaurants and shops 🇭🇷

10 August 2018

we got a bus into town which took about half an hour. from there we made our way to our apartment which is right in the centre of the old town. a couple of the skippers asked us out to dinner so they came into town where we ate and had a few drinks 🍝
we left super early to make our way to split where our sailing would end. we stopped for a swim and brunch on the way. suzannah has her flight back to paris that night so we had to say goodbye at the marina 👋🏽

9 August 2018

for our last dinner we went to hora farm where everything we ate was grown on the farm including grapes for the wine and lavender. afterwards we all went to bar for last drinks and a boogie 🍇
we joined another group for a swim and lunch on their boat. it was a windy day so on the way to our next stop we were able to put the sails up ⛵️
we had been talking about making pancakes the entire trip so emily made some for breakfast. it got a bit too rocky and everything slipped off the table. nutella went everywhere. and where it landed looked very questionable 🤔

8 August 2018

next up was hvar which is known for it’s nightlife. first we went to hula hula which is a big bar right on the beach. it was so sweaty with hundreds of people. after then we went to a smaller bar named kiva where everyone spills out into the alleyway. my favourite moment of the night is everyone outside singing mr brightside to the top of their lungs. after that we headed to a club named seven where we boogied until it closed 🍸

7 August 2018

in the afternoon we rafted all the boats together. there’s five including the lead boat. we had a party where the skippers made a big punch on the water and everyone got on their inflatables 🍹
in the morning we went to this secluded spot that was nice and still and got the stand up paddle board out. we tried to do some yoga poses on the board. I don’t know how people can do partner yoga in surfboards riding a wave when we could stand on one leg on flat water 🤷🏽‍♀️

6 August 2018

we went up to this bar named massimo’s which used to be an old watch tower on the walls of the city. you had to climb a very steep ladder to get up to the top which isn’t ideal in a long dress but it was very cool and the sunset was stunning 🌅
we got a taxi into korčula town. it’s supposably the birthplace of marco polo. it’s a really pretty place with lots of alleys and old buildings 🗺
the next day we headed for korčula. I busted out my budgy smugglers which has my friends corey’s face all over them that were made for his 30th 😆

5 August 2018

we docked in a little city named polače and from there caught a bus to mljet national park. there’s a few lakes so we went for another swim 🏊🏽‍♀️ on the way back in emily bumped into a gold coast couple that she had met in barcelona and then happened to be on the same flight to dubrovnik so it was funny seeing them in this small town.
we sailed to the island of mjlet where we busted out the inflatable lilo’s. the water was perfect 👌🏽

4 August 2018

in the morning we packed our belongings and made our way to the marina to board our sailboat for a week with medsailors ⚓️ our skippers name is luis and he is from portugal. we have another two girls suzannah & nicki who funnily enough are originally both from brisbane. suzannah & becky recognised each other as they both went to girls grammar and hadn’t seen each since school. suzannah is now living in paris and nicki in london.

3 August 2018

on the way back to the apartment we stopped by a different beach for a swim. the water was so cold again but still enjoyable. we decided to give each other male bogan names as our drinking alter egos. my name is keith, emily is shane and becky is bazza 👷🏻‍♂️
becky and her family have this running joke of taking photos looking dead so we did that on some stairs which apparently have been filmed in game of thrones 💀
the place we wanted to eat lunch wasn’t open so we went down the bar next door to grab a drink. we noticed that the bar had broncos and xxxx stickers and when we asked the waitress about it she said the owner was from brisbane. the vegan restaurant was named nishta and when I was taking my food photo the couple next to us asked if they could take a photo too as they forgot to take one before eating theirs. they are from san francisco after chatting to them we discovered that they knew my friend erin whom I’ve travelled with plenty of times and most recently the philippines. their daughter went to the same school as her! they were so friendly and gave me their contact details for the next time I was there. such a small world! 🌏
we got up a bit earlier to go walk the city walls. to walk around is 1.9km. it’s beautiful in both directions seeing the blue waters one way and the orange rooftops the other.

2 August 2018

my friend elle told me one of her friends from brisbane was also in dubrovnik so we contacted him to meet up for drinks. we had some delicious lavender gin & tonics and the local beer 🍸
on the walk home we stopped by danče beach for a swim. there aren’t really beaches but spots of rocks or cliffs where you can go straight down into the water 🌊
in the morning we caught the bus to old town and walked up to fort lovrijenac. it’s a 16th century seaside fortress and theatre 🎭

1 August 2018

after settling into our airbnb we caught a bus to one of the nearby beaches called cava beach where we watched the sunset. I couldn’t get over how clear the water is here 🌅
pedja dropped me off to the airport where I caught a flight to dubrovnik. from there I caught a bus to the main bus station where to my surprise, I was met by my friends emily & becky 🚌
on the way back to the apartment I walked through skardarlija which is the old bohemian quarter. it’s very cute with cobblestone streets and beautiful and colourful shop fronts 🌞
for my last morning in belgrade I walked to the temple of st salva which is the largest orthodox church in the balkan region. it’s an absolutely beautiful church and I got quite emotional looking up at it 🏛

31 July 2018

belgrade is known as a party city so I thought I should find somewhere to try their local spirit named rakia. I’ve had different versions of the same drink before from romania, albania & turkey. I tried a pear flavoured one made in a monastery. it’s so bloody strong that you need water to have it with. not my favourite thing in the world but it has to be done 🍐
I looked for a vegetarian restaurant for dinner because I was all carbed out. I found this lovely place called mayka and ordered some fresh juice and some miso ramen soup. while I was there the sun set and was beautiful shades of pink and purple. on the way home I stopped by a pub named the black turtle and tried one of their flavoured beers from their brewery. I got the blueberry one which was nice and sweet 💙
I hired a bicycle and rode 10kms to an “island” named ada cingalija. it’s in between two rivers so that’s how it has become an island. you can swim there and there’s plenty of restaurants and bars too. such a good place to relax right in the city. I had lunch at a place called sunset 1999 and asked the waiter to give me some serbian food that didn’t have meat. I ended up with ajvar a tasty roasted capsicum dip & kajmak which is kind of like a clotted salty cream made with sheep milk. I kept cycling around the lake and met up with pedja and went for a swim. the water was really nice and cooling. he bought me my first serbian beer too 🍺
good morning belgrade! ☀️ pedja recommended a little bakery around the corner for some burek which is a flaky pastry filled with cheese. I got a takeaway coffee too and headed to one of the parks to enjoy.

30 July 2018

in the evening I went to a class at wolf yoga company. the class description was stretch and mobility so I thought it’d be perfect to wind down to prepare for some good sleep but it turned out to be a heated vinyasa focused on core. good workout but I wasn’t mentally prepared for it! 🧘🏽‍♀️ I wandered the streets craving some falafel but there isn’t really takeaway places so I ended up ordering so gnocchi from a restaurant to go. it was nice though as I got to see some really cool buildings whilst searching for food. I couldn’t believe how busy it was too on a monday night with people everywhere.
across from the apartment is kalemegdan park and within it belgrade fortress. it’s right in the danube & sava river. for hundreds of years everyone lived within the walls of the fortress and it’s been under siege so many times throughout history ⚔️
I decided that I needed to not nap and try and stay awake to avoid jet lag so after a shower I went on the mission to find some food. I walked past a burger place that said locally sourced and organic so I was lured in. the days are hot being around 30° and I wasn’t prepared for the heat coming from winter. most of the restaurants have those fans flowing mist which makes it more comfortable. my friend danny has a friend who’s a yogi who spent some time in belgrade so she recommended some places for me. I tried crna ovca ice cream which was absolutely delicious. I got white chocolate with balsamic strawberries. while I was eating that I walked around the old city. I love the colours of the buildings🍦
the apartment is cute and cosy and right in the old city which makes it a perfect base for exploring on foot. pedja was showing me places on a map where he recommends but when we got to food and he found out I was vegetarian he said I was all on my own 😆
hello serbia! it took just over 23 hours to get here with a quick stop in abu dhabi 🛬 stepping straight off the plane was the first time I’ve had my passport checked. but at least getting through customs was super quick and easy. my airbnb host pedja was waiting with a my name on a sign. he’s so friendly and immediately was telling me all the things to do whilst I’m here.