Pitt Meadows, The best Day-Trip from Vancouver

Aside from being a gorgeous city, Vancouver is also a gateway to tons of stunning gems in British Columbia. One of the gems which I recently visited is the city of Pitt Meadows. Pitt Meadows is located just an hour’s drive away from Downtown Vancouver. And I can pretty much say that it is one of the best day trips to do when you are visiting Vancouver. 

READ ALSO: EXPLORING ALBERTA, THE ULTIMATE CANADIAN ROAD-TRIP

I never heard of Pitt Meadows before. I only found out about it through my friend Jeff who is also my photography mentee who’s workplace happens to be based in Pitt Meadows. Often times, during his free time, he goes to Pitt Lake -one of Pitt Meadow’s major attraction to practice and apply what we have discussed from our prior photography session.

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Here is a little fact about Pitt Lake according to Wikipedia:

Pitt Lake is the second-largest lake in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. About 53.5 square kilometres in area, it is about 25 km long and about 4.5 km wide at its widest. It is one of the world’s relatively few tidal lakes, and among the largest. In Pitt Lake, there is on average a three foot tide range; thus Pitt Lake is separated from sea level and tidal waters during most hours of each day during the 15 foot tide cycle of the Pitt River and Strait of Georgia estuary immediately downstream. The lake’s southern tip is 20 km upstream from The Pitt River confluence with the Fraser River and is 40 km east of DowntownVancouver.

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So one weekend, we decided to have our photography lesson at Pitt lake in Pitt Meadows. We did some portrait sessions, with ourselves as models taking turns being each other’s muse haha. 

READ ALSO: EXPLORING CANADA, THE BEST COUNTRY

Then we took some landscape photos from different areas of the lake. Of all the photos we took that day in Pitt Lake, ninety-nine percent of it is pretty much incredible! The lighting, the scene, and the vibe is just on point! You basically cannot take any bad photos here. 

Here are some more photos to convince you to add Pitt Lake in your bucket list when visiting British Columbia or should I say Canada. 

The best days to go to Pitt Lake is basically during the weekdays where you can have the whole place all for yourself. During the weekends, it’s just a bit crowded. 

Thanks for reading! Happy travels! 

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Exploring Alberta, The Ultimate Canadian Road-Trip

Banff and Jasper National Parks have always been two of Canada’s major highlights. A trip to Canada wouldn’t be complete without having been able to visit at least one of these two. Fortunately for me, I was able to visit both! Well, thanks to my friend for enthusiastically showing me the beauty of her country!

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We started our journey from Edmonton and then we made our way to Canmore passing through Red Deer and Calgary in Alberta. We spent the night in Canmore at a friend’s place. Canmore is a small but very gorgeous town, it looks as if it’s a magical Christmas village that came straight out of a fairytale.

Read Also: Exploring Canada, The Best Country In The World

The next morning, we headed off to Banff. Banff is just an hour’s drive away from Canmore. In Banff, we went to see the famous Louise Lake, though partially frozen cause it still was spring during that time, it still looked incredibly marvelous! So imagine more when it’s completely taw, showing that magnificent sparkling turquoise-colored water! Anyway, that’s just one more reason for me to visit it again, but next time it will be in the summer months for sure.

We also did a little side trip to Cline River Heliport just outside the boundary of the two national parks for the ‘ 6 Glacier Helicopter Tour’. Here we Dived deep in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, lifted off and soared 9000 ft (2900m) over Cline Pass. A helicopter tour that was jam-packed with amazing sights. Highly recommended if you wanna see the beauty of the Canadian Rockies from above.

After our quick helicopter-tour, we headed to Jasper. The same as Banff, Jasper is also a breathtaking place. And if you’re an animal lover, then you’ll surely love the elks, deers, caribous, coyotes, and other animals which roam around the town. We also visited Athabasca Falls, a magnificent wonder in Jasper. A paradise for landscape and nature photographers.

After Jasper, we headed back to Edmonton with a quick stopover at Edson for some authentic A&W Burger and rootbeer, I know! So Canadian! haha. Yeah, It was a quick one but it has surely blown my mind away with the beauty and abundance of wildlife in Alberta or Canada in general. Canada takes care of its nature and resources, I wish every country should follow.

In my entire photography career, I think I took the best nature and landscape photos in these places. There’s just lots of things to see and do in these national parks, and I barely scratched the surface of it. So I guess that’s one major reason for me and my baby(my camera) to visit again haha.

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Barcelona: A Vibrant and Gigantic Amusement Park

Barcelona is like a gigantic amusement park, a city where every locality has something different to offer. Barcelona has many different features which are facing the Mediterranean Sea.  It is filled with great and unique architectural buildings that are undeniably a work of art.  A mouth-watering dish like Paella is worth a try. 

I would say that this was our best trip so far because it didn’t only offer the preserved history of vibrant España but also their citizens, who are very accommodating and truly talented. We have visited Barcelona’s top attractions; however, our top 5 would be the Park Guell, Sagrada Familia, La Ramblas, Arc De Triomphe, and Mount Tibidabo. 

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Park Guell is one of the main tourist fascinations of Barcelona. It is very interesting for people like me who wants to know more about the unusual world of the works of Antoni Gaudi. However, you’ll have to pay an extra amount in order to enter the monumental zone to see the famous view of the park. I would describe Park Guell as an original masterpiece and an exotic architecture. 

The Sagrada Familia is still under construction up to this date, the construction has began in 1882 with Gaudi being the one behind the design of this religious architecture. The design is out of the ordinary and every details are well-thought of. Moreover, I was enormously impressed by the grandeur of its interior as well as the beauty of the church itself. 

La Ramblas of Barcelona is the pedestrian-like promenade that is lively with various stalls and vendors along it. Within the promenade, we passed by their ‘wet market’ or popularly known as La Boqueria that is definitely clean and well-maintained.

The Arc de Triomphe, similar to the Arc located in Paris, France is worth a visit as well. This arc served as gateway to the Word Fair in 1888.                   

Lastly, the Mount Tibidabo, which has many attractions and is best known for its funicular which was once considered an attraction. But what really amazed us was the oldest amusement park in Barcelona that is situated on top of the mountain and retains some of its oldest rides that are completely functional even up to this date. On top of the Ferris wheel ride, you can see the panoramic view of the whole city of Barcelona that is truly breathtaking. 

Barcelona is a city where you have to see and experience it yourself. You might have a different perspective about it but all in all it truly amuses everyone by its wonder. 

This Travel Story is written by Rommel ‘Roms’ Ramirez. You can follow more of his adventure on his instagram @romsramirez or facebook Rommel Zubieta Ramirez
ALL PHOTOS IN THIS ARTICLE ARE FROM ROMMEL ‘ROMS’ RAMIREZ PERSONAL ARCHIVE.

A nurse by profession, but a traveler by heart. I love traveling to places that is rich in history and diversity. I am a professional dancer, that being said, I prefer being in places that is full of creativity, culture, and positive vibes. 

Traveling means a lot to me. It is a humbling experience of being able to see places for yourself and reminisce the journey and people that I’ve met. Having conversations with locals in any specific city adds up some learning about that specific place I’ve visited. Exploring the world is something that no one can take away from us. That makes us human, the eagerness to learn, to experience, and explore the world. 

ROMMEL’S TRAVEL ESSENTIALS

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How I Travelled Across North Macedonia, Kosovo, Bulgaria and Serbia using My Philippine Passport

Few weeks back, I traveled across several countries in the Balkan Region in Europe. I was able to cover four Balkan Countries in eight days. Well it took a few days of planning like booking all accommodations and transportations in advance to get the cheapest deal available. 

As a Philippines Passport holder, I needed to have a valid visa to be able to visit these countries. But fortunately, all of these countries allow passport holders from several countries to enter without having the need to obtain a visa for each, as long as they are holding a valid multiple-entry Schengen Visa. And obviously in my case, I used my valid Schengen Visa to travel across these countries. 

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Traveling to several countries in a single trip doesn’t need to be tough, especially when you are traveling across Europe. Whenever I go on a trip, I try to cross-out at least two countries in each trip to save on flight costs. And countries in Europe are pretty much situated near each other and can easily be accessed through land transportations such as buses, trains, etc. which makes it more easier. I travelled pretty much through buses across these countries with seven hours being the longest time.

Crossing the border to some of these countries can be quite tough though, especially to people who are holding passports from third-world nations. So I highly suggest that you should always have all the useful documents like onward tickets, accommodations etc.  ready with you whenever you cross a border to prove that your main purpose of visit is merely for tourism. 

Skopje, North Macedonia

My first stop was in Skopje, the capital of North Macedonia. Skopje is a pretty compact capital surrounded by beautiful mountains. I spent a total of two days exploring this city. It is also quite affordable to travel in this city, like a pint of beer ordered from a pub or restaurant would only cost you less than a Euro. 

So far, the best places that I recommend in Skopje are Canyon Matka and Skopje’s Old Town. Canyon Matka is one of the main highlight of North Macedonia, it is also one of the most beautiful canyon I’ve ever seen. It can easily be reached through a 20-minute taxi ride from Skopje’s Town Center. The old town is just located in the city-center itself. Here you can see countless different giant statues and stunning cobbled streets.

READ ALSO:

Top Things To Do in Skopje North Macedonia

Top Reasons To Visit Canyon Matka

Pristina, Kosovo

My second stop was in Pristina, the capital of Kosovo. I arrived in Pristina through a two-hour bus ride from Skopje and spent a day exploring everything that this city has to offer. Crossing the border from North Macedonia to Kosovo is one of the quickest and easiest border crossings I’ve ever done in my whole life of traveling. 

Pristina is a beautiful city, you can pretty much explore everything in this city within a day. Mother Theresa Boulevard is a must-visit when in Pristina. Here you can find countless hip cafes and authentic local restaurants where you can have a taste of amazing Kosovo cuisines. The same as Skopje, this city is also quite affordable to travel to.

Sofia, Bulgaria

My third stop, Sofia! Sofia is the capital of Bulgaria and one of the most  beautiful European cities. I spent a total of three days exploring everything that this city has to offer. Sofia can easily be reached through a four-hour bus ride from Skopje in North Macedonia or Pristina in Kosovo.

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Sofia has so much history, and you can see it from the ruins which still remain intact until today. Some of the few things I recommend worth visiting in this city is the Vitosha Boulevard, their main street and the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the whole of Europe. 

READ ALSO: Top Things To See and Do in Sofia 

Belgrade, Serbia

Belgrade or Beograd, the capital of Serbia is my final stop on this trip. I arrived in Belgrade’s main bus station after a seven-hour bus ride from Sofia, Bulgaria. From the bus station, the city center can easily be reached in less than ten-minutes by foot. I stayed for a total of four days exploring and discovering everything this city has to offer. 

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Belgrade is a big and beautiful city, I know it’ll be beautiful prior to visiting it but I wasn’t expecting it to be very vast. It has also been dubbed as ‘the city that never sleeps’. The capital has two main areas worth exploring, New Belgrade and Old Belgrade. New Belgrade is on the left side of the Sava river while Old Belgrade is on the opposite. 

Although the whole city itself is worth exploring, there are few things in Belgrade that I highly recommend worth visiting. The Knez Mihailova Street and the Belgrade Fortress shouldn’t be missed when you are visiting Belgrade. The Knez Mihailova Street is one of the oldest and most valuable landmarks of the city and there you can find countless shops, restaurants, cafes, pub, etc. While the Belgrade Fortress is one of the most beautiful spots in Belgrade for sunset viewing and it can easily be reached from the other end of the Knez Mihailova Street. 


Have you been to and of these countries? How was your experience? Share it with us through the comment section below. 

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10 Photos That Will Make You Wanna Visit London

London is one of my favorite of all the cities I have been to. Simply because of its captivating vibe and picturesque streets. When we think of London, we think of the London Eye, The Big Ben, The Tower Bridge, etc. But let’s skip those for now. In this blogpost, I will be sharing 10 unique photos that will make you wanna visit the English Capital.

Covent Garden is one of the most beautiful districts in London. I spent half-day exploring this gem when I was in London. Definitely a place I would like to explore again when I will visit London soon.

After a day of exploring, a pint of beer is the best idea! So why not head to Cafe Brood. I found this gem while exploring Borough Market on my second day in London.

If you’re looking for the best backdrop for your instagram photos, head over to the Southbank Skate Space, here you can find stunning graffitis and other street arts. Or if you simply wanna skate, then this is the best place for you.

I visited St. James Park on my second day in London. The views are breathtaking even though most trees didn’t have any leaves mainly because it was winter during that time. What mostly caught my attention though are the squirrels. They’re very cute and they seem to be really tamed, maybe because they got used with people giving them food.

If you’re visiting Greenwich in London, make sure to include the The Old Royal Naval College in your list. The Old Royal Naval College is an architectural center piece in Maritime Greenwich, a World Heritage Site in Greenwich, London. Definitely a must-visit for architecture lovers.

The Old Royal Naval College
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If you wanna travel back in time or simply want to admire a great piece of architecture, then Churchill War Rooms is the best place for you to go. The Churchill War Rooms is a museum in London the museum comprises the Cabinet War Rooms, a historic underground complex that housed a British government command centre throughout the Second World War, and the Churchill Museum, a biographical museum exploring the life of British statesman Winston Churchill.

reference: Wikipedia

Churchill War Rooms

I visited Columbia Road Flower Market on my third day in London. It was a Sunday and it is the only day where the market is open, so take note of that. Columbia Road Flower Market is located in Bethnal Green in London. But aside from flowers, you can also witness amazing street performers showing their respective crafts here.

‘People Watching’ is definitely one of the most therapeutic activities out there. Have you ever tried picking up on idiosyncrasies like language, expressions, clothing and activities to try to guess at another person’s story? Well, I always do and it’s pretty relaxing haha. Anyway, I took this photo between St. Pauls Church and the Millennium Bridge. I though it would be nice to add at here.

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Exploring Madrid and Oliva in Spain

I traveled to Madrid from Lisbon by bus. It was an overnight one leaving Lisbon around 7pm and it took almost 11 hours before it was able to reach Madrid South Station. Well, there are also some flight options from Lisbon to Madrid but it’s five times more expensive than the cost of the bus fare. As a budget-traveler, I always opt for the more practical option. 

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It was a weekend when I arrived in Madrid, so basically everything was closed. And I realized that the data sim I bought in Portugal doesn’t seem to work in Spain. Fortunately, there was this one cafe in the station which was open, and thank goodness they have wifi, so I just booked an Uber instantly to my accommodation which in this case was the house of one of my good friends. 

On my way to my friend’s house, I got a really good glimpse as to how beautiful this city is from the Uber car. The streets were just bustling with lovely people walking their dogs and people sitting on outdoor cafes enjoying their cup of coffee. And upon arriving at my friend’s house, I left my luggages and we went out to do a little bit of exploring.

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In the afternoon, we decided to go swimming to one of the public pools in Madrid. To my surprise, I didn’t expect the queue to the pool to be a mile long! Well, basically it was summer during that time, and since Madrid is from from the beach, people often flock into pools to cool-down. 

After queuing for almost two hours, we were finally able to get in. But again, to my surprise, the pool is so crowded, like literally, there is no more space to get into. I’ve never been to any pool this crowded, but it was quite an experience. 

On my second day, I went to explore Madrid’s old town, and damn, it’s very gorgeous! Madrid is one of the most beautiful capitals I’ve ever been to. It’s very clean and almost all streets are covered with trees. In the main part of the old town, gorgeous pedestrian streets, stunning monumental buildings and squares filled with monuments are just some of the things that you’ll see. Madrid is indeed a city of great monuments.

Gran Via is Madrid’s most famous street and also one of my favorite streets in Madrid. It is also described as a hustling and bustling part of Madrid’s city center with no shortage of interesting and exciting things to do and see. Here you can find lots of buildings with stunning architectures, luxury shops and department stores. Definitely the best place to go shopping in Madrid. 

The Plaza Mayor, which literally means ‘Main Square’ in english is my favorite place in Madrid. It is a major public space in the heart of Madrid where you can find countless shops and cafes offering authentic Spanish Cuisines. 

On the next day, we went to Oliva, a small coastal town in the Valencian community. A three-hour drive from Madrid, this gem is one of the most beautiful town in Spain but also one of the most underrated as people tend to go to its more famous neighbor, Valencia City. We stayed for a total of three days in Oliva, often times busking under the sun by the beach. It’s also here where I got sunburnt so bad, but I have no regrets as I had so much fun. 

Back in Madrid, I spent my remaining days in the city, exploring and experiencing it like a local. Often times, I have no concrete itinerary and just wander around till I find a nice local pub. For me, wandering is often the best way for you to actually discover the best things any city has to offer. 

While writing this article, I actually cannot wait to visit Madrid again, or Spain in general. Also, would love to be able to visit other Spanish Cities like Barcelona next time. 

Have you been to Spain? How was your experience? Share it with us through the comment section below. 

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Exploring Tallinn, Estonia | Top Reasons to Visit Tallinn | Top Things to See in Tallinn

Tallinn is the capital and largest city of Estonia. It is a coastal town with lots of history. I arrived in Tallinn from Helsinki. Tallinn can easily be reached through a two-hour ferry-ride from Helsinki. Ferries from Helsinki to Tallinn and vice-versa regularly leaves every hour, so basically, most visitors in Helsinki tend to go on a day-trip to Tallinn. But in my case, I didn’t go for a day-trip as I wanted to experience this city at a different level, so I spent a total of three-days exploring and discovering what this city has to offer. 

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In this article, I will be sharing some of the Top-reasons why you should consider Tallinn in Estonia as your next destination. As well as some of the top things to see in this beautiful capital.

Hospitable People

Upon arriving at the Ferry-Dock in Tallinn, we were meet and greeted by our Airbnb host. She also drove us to the accommodation at no additional cost. And upon entering our Airbnb accommodation, a welcome basket with local chocolate and wine was lying on the table, literally two of my favorite things! So I was totally speechless. It really is true, small gestures often make the biggest impact. 

Great Location

Tallinn has a strategic location in the Baltic Region. You can pretty much reach other countries like Latvia and Russia in less than seven-hours from here, and Finland for two-hours. 

Stunning Old Town

Tallinn’s Old Town is one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe. Here you can find countless cobbled passages. It is also home to many local cafes and restaurants where you can indulge in local cuisines. Although extensively bombed by Soviet air forces during the later stages of World War II, much of the medieval Old Town still has retained its charm.

Its Cheaper than most European Cities

Coming from Helsinki, I’m pretty surprise as to how everything here in this city is quite affordable. You can basically have a cup of cappuccino from a cozy cafe for a Euro. Hostels in Tallinn can be quite cheap as well, and most of them have affordable private rooms that are a good alternative to an average entry hotel. But Airbnb can be a great option too. Your Euros can go a long way in this city. 

Kiek in de Kök Museum and Bastion Tunnels

Restored cannon tower from the 15th century in Tallinn. It is converted into museum with exhibits & tours of secret tunnels. Definitely a must-visit when in Tallinn.

Tallinn Town Hall Square

The Tallinn Town Hall Square is basically the city’s main square. Here you can find countless outdoor cafes and restaurants serving authentic Estonian Cuisines and beers. It is here where they hold community events as well, and during winter seasons, the square transforms into a giant Christmas market. 

Kohtuotsa Viewing platform

The Kohtuotsa Viewing platform is basically a must visit when in Tallinn. Located just a few hundred meters from Tallin’s Main Square, you can easily reach it by foot. The best time to go here is either during sunrise or sunset to see a dramatic view of Tallinn. 

St Olaf’s church

St Olaf’s Church is one of the tallest churches in Tallinn. Here you can see a wonderful 360 degrees view of Tallinn from above. Though I’m warning you, the climb can be a challenge, for you to reach the viewing deck you need to pass through a narrow spiral staircase with a slight traffic of other people heading up and heading down. Basically not for those who are claustrophobic. 

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

The Alexander Nevsky Cathedral is an orthodox cathedral in the Tallinn Old Town, Estonia. It was built to a design by Mikhail Preobrazhensky in a typical Russian Revival style between 1894 and 1900, during the period when the country was part of the Russian Empire. 

Reference: Wikipedia

Onnelik Korstnapuhkija

Onnelik Korstnapuhkija or the Lucky Chimney Sweeper is a bronze statue of a short chimney sweeper standing in Suur-Karja in Tallinn’s Old Town. Locals believe that by rubbing the statue, you are welcoming luck to come into your life.

Tallinn Town Hall

A gothic structure in Tallinn’s main square. A site to behold of architecture lovers.

Have you been to Tallinn in Estonia? If so, how was your experience! 😀 Share it with us through the comment section below. 

New to the blog, click here to get to know me more. 

Exploring Lisbon, Top Things to Do and See in this Capital

Portugal was one of the major destinations which I always wanted to visit. It has always been on top of my list for quite some time and being able to tick-it off my bucket is just quite a personal achievement. Growing up in the Philippines, they always teach in our social study classes as to how the Portuguese people has influenced our country. Well, basically, we were under the Spanish rule for 300 years and the famous Ferdinand Magellan who conquered the Philippines for Spain is indeed Portuguese. 

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Going back, I arrived in Lisbon from Paris, the flight only lasted for like around two and a half hours. After going through security at Lisbon’s Airport, I took an Uber straight to my accommodation, but upon arriving there, I was informed by one of the  staff that I could only check-in after one in the afternoon and I looked at the time and it was only nine-thirty in the morning, so I was like, really?! But fortunately, my accommodation has a bar, so I just ordered some beer, opened my computer and did some photo-editing. And after being able to check-in, I left my luggage and bags in my room and went out to explore Lisbon’s old town. 

It was summer when I visited Portugal, so aside from the great weather, there were also lots of interesting events happening during that time. The FIFA world cup for example, it’s like their religion. Since it wasn’t Portugal who was hosting it that year, Lisbon has set up giant screens to air the live football match in their main square! But that’s not the crazy part, the crazy part was seeing the square jam-packed with lots of people from different parts of the world wearing the uniform and waving the flag of the team they are supporting as they scream and cheer for them. 

In this article, I will be sharing some of the best things to do and see in this beautiful capital. 

JOIN A FREE WALKING TOUR

One of the best way to explore Lisbon and actually know the history of some of its monuments and landmarks is by joining a free walking tour. You can easily spot different guides offering free walking tours from Lisbon’s Squares.

EXPLORE LISBON’S ALFAMA NEIGHBORHOOD

Perhaps one of my favorite spots in Lisbon. Alfama is one of Lisbon’s oldest areas. Here you can find lots of shops selling traditional crafts and cozy cafes which offers some of the best coffees and pastries. You can also witness tons of artistic murals painted on walls here. 

TASTE THEIR FAMOUS PASTEL DE NATA

Basically, it’s a sweet custard tart. I just drool whenever I think of this. Basically one of my favorite pastries in the whole world. I basically had at least five of these per day when I was in Lisbon. 

photo courtesy of Pasteis de Belem

TAKE A SHOT OF THEIR FAMOUS GINJINHA

Your visit in lisbon woudn’t be complete if you haven’t tasted their tasty Ginjinha. Basically it’s one of the most well known alcoholic drink in Portugal. Traditionally, it is a go-to drink for those who are broken-hearted haha. 

INDULGE IN LOCAL CUISINES

Sardines and cod dishes are some of the dishes which I highly recommend, they just cook and present it in a totally different level. Portuguese cuisine is just one of the best in the world. To be honest, I haven’t tasted bad food when I was in Portugal. 

EXPLORE BARRIO ALTO

Barrio Alto is often dubbed as the Bohemian District of Lisbon. It looks amazing during the day cause you can see all the old houses in the neighborhood are decorated with vivid street art, definitely a great place to stroll and take instagram-worthy photos. And at night, a diverse crowd fill the streets and the pubs. I went bar-hopping one night and ended up tasting tons of different local beers! The ambience in this area is just indescribable, sort of like the high you get from smoking weed haha. 

ASCENSOR DA GLORIA

The Glória Funicular, sometimes known as the Elevador da Glória, is a funicular railway line in the civil parish of Santo António, in the municipality of Lisbon, Portugal. It connects the Pombaline downtown with the Bairro Alto, operated by Carris.

reference: Wikipedia

TORRE DE BELEM

Belém Tower, officially the Tower of Saint Vincent is a 16th-century fortification located in Lisbon that served both as a fortress and as a ceremonial gateway to Lisbon. 

reference: Wikipedia

PRACO DO COMERCIO

The Praça do Comércio is located in the city of Lisbon, Portugal. Situated near the Tagus river, the square is still commonly known as Terreiro do Paço, because it was the location of the Paços da Ribeira until it was destroyed by the great 1755 Lisbon earthquake. 

reference: Wikipedia

ELEVADOR DE SANTA JUSTA

The Santa Justa Lift, also called Carmo Lift, is an elevator, or lift, in the civil parish of Santa Justa, in the historical city of Lisbon, Portugal. Situated at the end of Rua de Santa Justa, it connects the lower streets of the Baixa with the higher Largo do Carmo.

reference: Wikipedia

PADRO DOS DESCOBRIMENTOS

One of Lisbon’s famous landmarks, the Padrão dos Descobrimentos is a monument on the northern bank of the Tagus River estuary, in the civil parish of Santa Maria de Belém, Lisbon. 


MAAT

The Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology  of Lisbon. A great place to visit if you are into any of those crafts.  You can also see a great view of the Tagus River from here. 


PONTE 25 DE ABRIL BRIDGE

Often referred to as the famous red bridge of Lisbon. This bridge connects the city of Lisbon to the municipality of Almada. It is also one of the longest bridge in Europe. 

Aside from the ones above, there are still tons of other things to do in this city. But yeah, I’m reserving that for my next visit. My trip to Portugal was one of the most memorable summers in my life. So, I’m definitely am looking forward to my next visit. 

Have you been to Lisbon? How was your experience? Share it with us through the comment section below!

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Exploring Armenia, Top Things to See and Do in This Historic Country.

Armenia is a country in the mountainous Caucasus region between Asia and Europe. It is famously know for its monasteries as well as being the first-ever Christian nation. Yerevan is the capital and largest city of Armenia and one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever been to. It is situated just at the foot of the famous Mountain, Ararat. I decided to visit it ever since it has became a trending destinations for expats who are residing in the United Arab Emirates. So I check for cheap flights going there from here in Dubai, and as a budget traveler, one thing I always look for whenever I travel to a new destination is the flight cost, as it’s what takes most of the percentage on the budget. 

I flew with Flydubai going to Armenia. I took a morning flight and I was able to arrive there in the afternoon. Flights to Yerevan from Dubai usually takes around three to three-and-a-half hour.  I went there on Spring time and it didn’t disappoint. Armenia basically has 4 seasons and I guess each season is unique on its own, but there’s just something about spring that made me want to visit it during that time. Uhmm I think maybe because it signifies new beginnings.

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So upon arriving and collecting my luggage, I took a cab from the airport to Yerevan, the main city. Seeing a glimpse of the city from afar, I instantly fell in love with it. It just has this vibe where you can sense so much history in it. Its streets and and all these old structures made it felt as if I have traveled back in time.  

In this article, I will be sharing some of the gems which I stumbled upon while exploring the city on my first day as well as the top things to see and do in Armenia.  

REPUBLIC SQUARE

Republic Square is the central town square in Yerevan. The best place to go during sunsets to see their famous dancing fountain play. Here, you can also witness some buskers showcase their talents.

YEREVAN CASCADE

The Cascade is a giant stairway made of limestone. If you to the highest point of the cascade, you can witness the stunning view of Yerevan from a bird’s eye view. Definitely a must-visit place when in Armenia. 

YEREVAN OPERA THEATRE

Designed by the Armenian architect Alexander Tamanian. This structure is also known as the ‘Armenian National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet’. Definitely a site to admire when you are exploring Yerevan. 

NORTHERN AVENUE

Northern Avenue is a pedestrian only avenue in the center of Yerevan. It is sometimes referred to as Yerevan’s high street.  Here you can find countless cafes, pubs and shops. 

YEREVAN VERNISSAGE

Yerevan Vernissage is a large open-air market in Yerevan, Armenia. The name of the market is the derived from the French word vernissage. The market lies along Aram and Buzand streets at a length of 350 metres, connecting the Hanrapetutyun street with the Khanjyan street. 

reference: Wikipedia

HISTORY MUSEUM OF ARMENIA

The History Museum of Armenia is a museum in Armenia with departments of Archaeology, Numismatics, Ethnography, Modern History and Restoration. It has a national collection of 400,000 objects and was founded in 1920.

reference: Wikipedia

VISIT GEGHARD MONASTERY

Your visit in Armenia wouldn’t be complete without being able to visit Geghard Monastery. Geghard is only an hour drive from Yerevan, but you also avail different tours that will bring you here which you can avail at your accommodation’s reception. 

photo by: @iamvh_

LAKE SEVAN

Definitely one of Armenia’s highlight, Lake Sevan. A large, high-altitude lake in eastern Armenia. A must visit place for nature lovers and landscape photographers. 

photo by: @iamvh_

GARNI TEMPLE

The Temple of Garni is the only standing Greco-Roman colonnaded building in Armenia and the former Soviet Union. An Ionic pagan temple located in the village of Garni, Armenia, it is the best-known structure and symbol of pre-Christian Armenia.

reference: Wikipedia

photo by: @iamvh_

TSAGHKADZOR TOWN

Tsaghkadzor, is a spa town and urban municipal community, as well as one of the most popular health resorts in Armenia, located north of the capital Yerevan in the Kotayk Province. 

reference: Wikipedia

When visiting Armenia, I highly suggest to first-time visitors to allot at least three full days to be able to see most or maybe everything that this country has to offer. There are just tons of things to love about Armenia! Beauty just overflows from its breathtaking landscapes to its historic streets.

What I love most about Armenia are its people, they are just one of the most hospitable people I’ve ever encountered in my entire life. They offer you wine and food whenever you go for a visit at their houses, they offer to tour you around the town for free, they give you great tips for the best places in town according to your own preference, etc. These alone are enough for me already to plan my second visit there anytime soon.

Have you been to Armenia? How was your experience? Share it with us through the comment section below!

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Exploring Bratislava, Slovakia | Small but Lovely City

Bratislava is Slovakia’s capital, a country bordered by Poland to the north, Ukraine to the east, Hungary to the south, Austria to the southwest and the Czech Republic to the west. Bratislava is known for many things like its gorgeous old town, its castle in the city center, etc. But aside from these, Bratislava is also known for its beautiful people -those types which you see in pageants haha. 

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I visited Bratislava on the fall of 2018, I arrived from Vienna, Austria by bus. Bratislava is the fourth city I have visited on my first ever Eastern Europe tour. The bus ride took only two hours from Vienna, Yeah, they are pretty close. But often times, people skip Bratislava and often proceed to Bratislava’s more famous neighbors like Budapest or Prague. I have read online that Bratislava is virtually non-existent in the eyes of a typical western tourist. I’m not western, but I’m glad I was able to visit Bratislava, now it’s one of my favorite cities and it has become one of those cities in Eastern Europe that I always recommend when someone asks for the best places to visit in that area.

There are tons of things to love about Bratislava. First, it’s a very lovely town, second, it’s cheaper than most European Cities, third, its people are friendly and fourth, they serve really great food! I love the Cafe and pub atmosphere as well.

Courtesy of @tomdxbscot
Courtesy of @tomdxbscot

This city can be explored in a day as well, but in my case l was able to visit all the major attractions in less than a day. 

Here are some of the Top Things I suggest worth doing when in Bratislava. 

Visit Bratislava Castle

The castle’s view deck offers a spectacular 360 degree view of Bratislava. It’s pretty easy to get here as it is just located near the old town. You can just follow signs which are posted on most street corners if you are coming from the old town. If not, then you can always have your google map handy with you. 

View of the UFO Bridge from Bratislava Castle
Photo by Tom Henderson @tomdxbscot

Explore Bratislava’s Old Town

I will mention it here again, Bratislava’s old town is simply gorgeous. You can find countless pubs, cafes, restaurants and shops here. Basically the best place to unwind when in Bratislava. 

Go and See Michael’s Gate

This gate is the only city gate that has been preserved of the medieval fortifications and ranks among the oldest town buildings. Definitely a place to take that winning influencer shot lol. 

Visit Most SNP

Commonly referred to as Most Slovenského národného povstania or the UFO Bridge, and named Nový most from 1993 to 2012, is a road bridge over the Danube in Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. It is the world’s longest bridge to have one pylon and one cable-stayed plane.

reference: wikipedia. 

Of course, there are other things to do aside from the ones I mentioned above. But for me, being able to see those is already enough for me to appreciate the beauty of Bratislava, especially that I only stayed in the city for 24 hours. 

Have you been to Bratislava? How was your experience? Share it with us through the comment section below. 

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