All posts tagged: travel

Staying at The Residence, Zanzibar

After an incredible stay at Chyulu Hills in Kenya for my 30th birthday (you can catch up here about the hotel and here about the safari it you haven’t read them yet), we spent the second half of the holiday on the island of Zanzibar. I’ve always been fascinated by it as a destination, ever since I was a child. The name conjures up so many magical and fantastical images, with photos of calming turquoise waters and vibrant colours of the spice markets helping to reinforce this dream-like place. And hey, it was even referenced in a Tenacious D song (if you know, you know). So I was so excited to finally get to spend some time there. We took our tiny safari link plane from Chyulu Hills back to Nairobi, and from there we caught a slightly bigger plane which took about an hour and a half direct to Zanzibar. One of the many perks of booking with Turquoise Holidays is that we were met off the plane at the tarmac and escorted to …

On Safari in Chyulu Hills, Kenya

In October last year I spent my 30th birthday at the spectacular Ol Donyo Lodge in Kenya with Tim. I wrote about our experience of staying at the lodge and the superb food and drink in an earlier blog post here. But now is the time to talk about the most exciting part of the holiday – the safari! We’d never been on safari before and we did a bit of research, helped very much by the brilliant Turquoise Holidays who we booked with. For us, we wanted an all round experience of a beautiful hotel, excellent food and wildlife. We certainly hit the bullseye with Ol Donyo. As I mentioned in my previous blog post, Ol Donyo is on a reserve so you have the best of both worlds – plenty of wildlife around the greener grounds of the reserve, as well as out on the open plains. In this part of Kenya you don’t get hippos and rhinos, but pretty much everything else! And at Ol Donyo there are a number of different …

Staying at Hotel Del Teatre, Regencós, Spain

Over the summer some of our friends got married in Barcelona. We stayed at the Grand Hotel Central which was fabulous, centrally located just a few streets away from Las Ramblas. Despite being in the centre of the city, the rooms were a very generous size and there was a rooftop bar and swimming pool. We didn’t make use of the latter because it wasn’t actually very hot during our stay (it was September) but we certainly made good use of the former! The gin cocktail in a bag was a particular highlight (or Megan’s ‘tramp bag’ as my friends ‘affectionately’ called it!) After the wedding we planned to spend a couple of nights further up the coast towards the French border. This was quite a big deal because we would be DRIVING! Why was it a big deal? Well, I still don’t have a driving license and Tim only passed a couple of years ago. And most importantly, he’d never driven on the other side of the road before in a hire car! We …

Exploring Cheddar Gorge, Somerset

I am WOEFULLY behind on my blog at the moment. And I mean, woefully. Work has been incredibly busy and my whole summer was booked up with wonderful weddings and hen dos. Tim and I managed to pair some of the weddings with a few short holidays here and there to explore the surrounding areas, rather than rushing straight back to London for work. One of the weddings was over the Summer bank holiday near the gorgeous city of Bath, so we decided to spend a couple of days exploring Somerset. Despite both of us having lived in Devon for a number of years, and with family in Wiltshire, we hadn’t got around to seeing much of Somerset yet. But now we have a car, we wanted to change that. We stayed at the White Hart Inn in Somerton, essentially a pub and restaurant with rooms. I’m always a little cautious about booking ‘pub’ hotels but this was on Mr & Mrs Smith, which is usually an indicator of a good, quality hotel. Our bedroom …

Horseback riding in the sea at Hooves, Jamaica

While we were staying in Jamaica earlier this year, we were really quite content relaxing in our beautiful resort, Goldeneye. But there was one activity we had our eye on – horseback riding through the jungle and across the golden sands of the beach! I think there are a couple of companies that offer this in Jamaica, but our resort recommended Hooves. They arranged a private transfer (with the most amazing driver called Laurel, one of the nicest, funniest people we met in Jamaica and we still speak fondly of her – we’re still in touch on Whatsapp!) and in around half an hour we were pulling up at the stables in St Ann’s Bay. Hooves is a family business which has been running for over 20 years, with a very experienced team who you can see have a fantastic relationship with the horses. Many of the beautiful horses were rescued and brought back to good health, and are now living a very happy life at Hooves. I was given my horse (named Lover Boy!!) …

The Spa at Goldeneye, Jamaica

It seems like SO long ago since our incredible trip to Jamica at the end of February and rarely a day goes by when I don’t find myself daydreaming about it. You can catch up on my previous posts about where we stayed and the food if you’d like to know more about the resort, Goldeneye. One of its many superb features is the ‘FieldSpa.’ The spa is located right on the lagoon and for us it was directly opposite our cottage – this photo was taken from our terrace. You can easily canoe or paddle board over to the spa, but we thought we’d go for a wander around the grounds leading up to it, which have cute little messages dotted around reminding you to be quiet and maintain the peacefulness of the area. There’s a vast menu of treatments at the FieldSpa with massages, body scrubs and wraps, it was difficult to choose. We were booked in for a couple’s session so we could relax and unwind together at the same time, but …

Dining at Goldeneye, Jamaica

I still catch myself daydreaming about the soothing sound of the waves gently hitting the sand, a reggae music beat in the distance, with a rum coconut in my hand. Our visit to Jamaica was a few months ago now, and it’s starting to feel like a wonderful dream. You can read about our stay at the superb Goldeneye here, if you haven’t already. But this post is about all of the fantastic food and drink that the Jamaican resort has to offer. Goldeneye has two restaurants within the grounds – The Gazebo and The Bizot Bar. I must admit, I was a tiny bit concerned there might not be enough variety, especially as we weren’t really planning to venture out of the resort in the evenings – we wanted to relax right where we were and not have to travel far. But I needn’t have worried, because both of these restaurants offered everything we needed, and more! The Gazebo, located on the left hand side as you enter the resort, before you cross the …