Author: A Girl Who Travels

the best photography spots

The Best Photography Spots in Florence, Italy

I’ve recently got back from a trip to Florence where I used to live for nearly two years. The winding streets, gorgeous architecture and the amazing food culture stole my heart to a point where a three-day trip in 2013 ended up in me packing my bags and moving to the Tuscan capital.   What followed were quite possibly the two most charming years of my life. Waking up to the sound of church bells echoing across Piazza Santa Croce where my apartment neighboured a building once owned by Michelangelo’s family; coffee dates turning into wine-filled lunches, gorgeous sunsets over Ponte Vecchio… it was nothing short of magical, or at least it certainly seemed like it when I look at my Fiorentino life from a perspective. Returning to Florence after nearly two years away felt a bit like slipping on an old glove, the feeling of familiarity warm and comforting. But there was something else…a bittersweet strike of nostalgia hiding in every corner of Centro Storico. Being back was the perfect excuse to re-discover some of my favourite spots and, as I figured …

Sailing in Antigua with Sperry and Pangea Exploration

A Caribbean Adventure with Sperry: Fighting Plastic Pollution & a Giveaway

What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think about the Caribbean? The delightful, yet slightly cliche, sight of white-sand beaches stretching for miles and palm trees gently swaying in the wind was the first thought that popped into my head when an email from Sperry, inviting me on a sailing adventure in Antigua, appeared in my inbox.   Turns out the reality is quite different – and it was thanks to Sperry that I learnt to look beyond the beautiful landscapes and see what’s on the inside – a plastic pollution issue that’s slowly eating up the beauty of our oceans, and of our planet. My American readers are no doubt familiar with Sperry –  the boat shoes and sea-inspired clothing brand with 82 years of marine tradition, delivering the promise of ocean adventure and discovery. Their close connection to the sea and dedication to ocean conservation led Sperry to team up with Pangaea sailing programme, run by Emily Penn, in a bid to bring attention to the plastic pollution issue affecting our oceans. …

Most Instagrammable London locations

The Most Instagrammable London Spots to Visit This Spring

I can’t think of a more perfect time to visit London than the spring, when the city cheerfully waves goodbye to winter gloom as the streets become covered with cherry blossom. From Hyde Park to zone nine, London suddenly turns into a cherry tree oasis, and with days finally getting longer and filled with sunshine, you’ll have little reason to stay inside. If you’re following me on Instagram, you’ll know that I have a rather soft spot for London’s cafe scene. In a city where new places pop up on every corner faster than you can say ‘coffee’, it’s hard to keep up but fear not – I’ve taken it upon myself to discover London’s most gorgeous cafes and equally glorious spots for your spring walk. After all, what better way to embrace the spring and the cherry blossom season than with a beetroot latte in hand, taking in the sights of London’s most Instagrammable spots? LONDON’S MOST INSTAGRAMMABLE CAFES PEGGY PORSCHEN The epitome of all things Instagrammable, Peggy Porschen is one of my favourite …

Villa Anouk, Essaouira - A Girl Who Travels

Villa Anouk – A Magical Sanctuary in the Heart of Morocco

A short drive from the coastal town of Essaouira in Morocco, where raw authenticity mixes with colonial charm, set amongst olive groves and countryside roads, nests Villa Anouk. My boyfriend and I arrived there on a warm January afternoon. We were driving up the rocky piste leading to the villa when I got a quick glimpse of its honey-coloured silhouette peeking through the trees. It was some time between then and the moment the driver pulled by the flower-adorned fountain at the entrance when I knew I was at no ordinary hotel.  It took me quite some time to think of the best way to describe Villa Anouk until I’ve realised that, to me, it remained more of a feeling than a place –  a sentiment that I share towards few hotels. So, let’s start with that feeling. Imagine a place where time passes slowly, wrapped up in a serenity so harmoniously perfect that it makes you want to hold each moment in the palm of your hand, just so you can gaze at it in a …

things to do in Warwick, Warwick hospital

Rail Travel Made Easy: Easter Adventure in Warwick

When I left my adopted Florentine home and moved to London a year and a half ago, there was one thing I told myself I’d do more of and that was rail travel. For someone like me who loves spontaneous adventures (and continuously refuses to take driving lessons), travelling by train is a no-brainer, especially when you’re based in London where endless travel opportunities await at every station. Sadly, the problem with making promises to yourself is that they often end up forgotten, and over a year passed by with me flying in and out of the country, failing to explore my own backyard. Then, a few weeks back, just as I was brainstorming trip ideas for the Easter Holidays, an email from Trainline landed in my inbox and my enthusiasm for rail travel returned in full swing! With Easter trip planning still fresh in my mind, I jumped at the opportunity to venture out of London in the search of a perfect day trip destination to try out mobile tickets with Trainline. With lots of …

visit Japan cherry blossom season The Luxury Travel Company

Springtime in Japan: Cherry Blossoms, Hot Springs and More!

I bit into my immaculately presented crepe from Takeshita Dori’s popular Marion Crepes and looked around in delighted amazement. Harajuku, Japan’s pop culture mecca and the capital of all things kawaii, from cat-shaped doughnuts to the head-turning outfits of the famous Harajuku girls, bursts with electric energy. It was hard to believe that just a few hours ago I was sitting on tatami matt of a centuries old temple, knees to the floor, sipping matcha to the soft sound of sozu.  It’s moments like this, somewhere between dreams and reality, that encapsulate the spirit of Japan.  From the head-spinning maze of neon-drenched streets of Tokyo to the centuries old temples in Kyoto, Japan effortlessly blends ancient traditions with its ultra modern identity, making it a fascinating country to visit. With the spring fast approaching and sakura blossoms ready to turn the whole country a shade of pink, there hasn’t been a more perfect time to plan your Japanese adventure. If you want to explore the electric mix of the old and the new first hand and don’t mind spending extra …

Travel transsiberian with a Girl who travels

Join me on the most unique Trans-Siberian adventure yet!

The cat’s finally out of the bag! I’ve teamed up with United Tours Russia to put together one of the most unique and exciting travel projects I’ve been a part of – and you’re the first one to find out all about it! If you like the sound of setting off on one of the greatest journeys on Earth while venturing into the world of self-development, keep reading! Since its creation, A Girl Who Travels has been more than just a platform where I write about beautiful destinations – to me, the most wonderful part of travel is the journey –  not just the one that takes you to far away places but the journey you take within yourself. I see travel as an incredible self-development tool which changed my life in ways I never thought possible, from working 9-5 to becoming my own boss and creating a life filled with passion and a deep sense of purpose. It’s been my goal to show you how travel and following your passion can transform your life, and while sharing my thoughts and …

Northern Lights in Tromso, Norwar Best Served Scandinavia

Join in the Arctic Adventure and Northern Lights Bonanza in Tromsø

For those of your who have been following me on Instagram,  my love for Scandinavia will come as no surprise. Can you blame me? Who wouldn’t dream of watching the Northern Lights sparkle across the arctic sky or husky sledging through fjordic landscapes, where rugged mountains and glassy lakes stretch for miles and miles…If this wasn’t enough to make me want to visit, Scandinavians completely upped the hotel game with igloo and ice hotels dotted all around the region. Can I jump on the plane already?! Needless to say, when Best Served Scandinavia told me about their special offer on a Northern Lights trip to Tromsø,  one of the world’s most isolated and, by the sound of it, quite possibly one of the most enchanting destinations, I just knew I had to share it with you. Without further ado, here’s the deal. 400km North of the arctic circle, scenically tucked in between Norwegian fjords and snow-capped mountains, sits the island town of Tromsø, the northernmost city in the world – and the very centre of the northern aurora zone. …

Mandeville hotel

The French Riviera in the heart of Marylebone

Those of you dreaming of indulging in the glamour of the French Riviera and London’s buzzing city life will no longer have to choose between the two. In a bold and oh so chic move, The Mandeville Hotel has recently collaborated with Maison Christian Lacroix, bringing the feel of the famous coastline to the fifth floor of their Marylebone hotel. The launch of their stunning new rooms, true to Lacroix’ flamboyant style, transformed the hotel into a true couture treat. I was lucky to be a part of the experience, as I enjoyed a rather glamorous staycation at the Jewel Box room, a part of the Riviera Rooms collection. With each of the four rooms designed to tell a different story, from the tropical feel of Jardin Exotique accentuated with Julian Chichester’s furniture to the glamorously sultry Midnight Blue, Jewel Box makes you feel as if you quite literally walked inside a jewellery box. This comes as no surprise as the room decor was inspired by Grace Kelly’s famously stolen Cartier jewels. From bejewelled bedding …

Maldives Club Med Kani

From the Sands of Abu Dhabi to The Maldivian Paradise: My Trip With Club Med

~ ABU DHABI My feet collapsed into the sand as I was slowly climbing the dunes of the Abu Dhabi Desert, the white fabric of our guide’s gandurah fluttering in the wind ahead of me. The sun was about to set, hovering over the horizon and casting orange shadows on the sand. Once I’ve reached the top, my long dress twisting around my ankles, there was hardly any sound except for the soft camel calling coming from afar. The desert stretched for miles and it almost felt like being trapped inside an hourglass. I smiled and looked back waving at my fellow travellers, Lorena and Rafaela, as they made their way up the dune. Just like me and a bunch of European and South African bloggers, they joined Club Med and Etihad Airways on an adventure that was about to take us from the sun seethed Emirates to the Maldives. We gazed over the horizon, gradually getting swollen by darkness as the tip of the sun began its descent behind the dunes. It was hard to …