21+ Unique Literary Gifts for Book Lovers Who Travel

Reading on the Beach - Books and Travel

I love receiving candles as gifts. But, as a candle-loving, book-consuming backpacker, books and candles are sadly not the most practical of gifts for readers who explore both real and fictional worlds. So, to represent the page travellers out there, here are the best literary gifts for book lovers who travel, which are practical, cute and – most importantly – kind to your baggage allowance.

(So, basically, this is all one big hint to friends, family and boyfriend about what they can get me for Christmas. Hint. Hint hint! HINT HINT HINT!) Read more

The Best Value Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals for Travel Bloggers in 2017

The Best Value Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals for Travel Bloggers 2017

Oh yes, those all-American holidays Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are upon us! It’s the perfect time for travel addicts and travel bloggers (i.e. me) to take advantage of plummeting prices, so here is my personal wishlist of Black Friday travel deals, including gadgets, cheap flights and hotels, and even travel blogging courses:

This post contains affiliate links, which means this blog receives a small commission on purchases at no extra cost to you. Affiliate income helps keep this blog alive and I never link to a service unless I personally use and recommend it.

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What Does it Mean to be an Expat? | A Few Thoughts on Living Overseas

Orange sunset on the beach in Asia

In a strange turn of events that involved an exchange with a friend of a friend, this week I was a guest on Keith Petit’s Expatriate Act podcast. (Sorry, Keith, I mean internet-based-radio-show!). This somehow turned into a two-hour discussion over Skype on what it means to be an expat and the weird and wonderful experience that is living overseas.

You can listen to the Expatriate Act – Episode 9 – Amy Poulton (Hong Kong/Italy/Mexico) on SoundCloud or download it from iTunes.

I highly recommend that you give it a listen, even though it’s pretty long (maybe save it for a long car journey?). However, I warn you the language is strong (read: lots of swearing, sorry Mom) and the discussion touches on some rather controversial topics. Read more

The Best Mexico City Bookstores for Books in English

Best bookstores in Mexico City for English Books - El Pendulo

I have an addiction. I arrive in a new city and plan to see the sights, but when I stumble across a bookshop en route, I can’t help but pop in “for five minutes”. Several hours later, I leave with my purse much lighter and my backpack significantly heavier. Yet, despite my lack of Spanish, this has not stopped me in Mexico – “Tiene novelas en Ingles?” And through my illness, I have discovered the best Mexico City bookstores (for books in English, that is!)… Read more

That Vancouver Lifestyle: One Week in Vancouver, City of Hipsters

Vancouver lifestyle - one week in the city blog cover

This past July, I spent one week in Vancouver, getting a little taste of Canada and visiting fellow ACLE alumna/travel blogger The Global Shuffle. But, the city wasn’t quite what I expected. This is the story of how I learnt to put down my old faithful Lonely Planet, stopped sightseeing and starting experiencing what can only be described as the Vancouver lifestyle:

One Week in Vancouver: City Sightseeing vs the Vancouver Lifestyle

Lonely Planet had never disappointed me until I spent one week in Vancouver this summer.

I’ve clung to the pages of my beloved LPs for years, like a travel comfort blanket. From my five-years-out-of-date copy of Southeast Asia on a Shoestring, to library-stolen Japan guides, to my dear beloved dogeared guide to Italy, guidebooks in general are special to me. Read more

A Tale of Two Earthquakes in Mexico City

earthquakes in mexico city cover

So, in my short time in Mexico I have managed to survive not one, but two major earthquakes in Mexico City. Of course, there have always been earthquakes in Mexico City and in Mexico in general, but these were some of the biggest that the country has seen. This is the story about what happened to me during and after both of these huge earthquakes in Mexico City.

Before I start, if you are looking for practical advice about what to do during earthquakes in Mexico City, then please read Northern Lauren’s The Anxious Girl’s Guide to Earthquake Etiquette. The first part is tongue-in-cheek (and a hilarious read), but there’s also some important and practical information about what to do during earthquakes at the end. Read more

My Favourite Quotes from Wild by Cheryl Strayed

I’ve been quiet for a few months on this blog. This has been partly an intentional break and partly because I’ve struggled to find the right words to articulate the reasons behind my hiatus. However, if there are any words that can best describe the tumultuous swinging between wanderlust and a craving for home that I’ve been feeling, they can be found in quotes from Wild by Cheryl Strayed.

Ironically, I read Strayed’s travel memoir in my hometown, rather than on the road. Yet, in six months of hibernation back on British soil, I found that I couldn’t concentrate on reading Wild when I was sitting still. Instead, I turned the pages on trains and buses.

It was as if I needed to be in transit for the journey to resonate.

It seems apt that now that I’ve left home once again for the next adventure (more on this to come), that the time is ripe to share some of my favourite passages and quotes from Wild on this blog. Read more

The Best Buddha Quotes About Life

Buddha Statue

Who else loves a good Buddha quote? *Raises hand* Yup, sometimes I just need a little pick-me-up from the B. Man. So, if you’re like me, then please enjoy this little compilation of the best Buddha quotes about life that have finally pulled me out of my blog slump.

After #40days40blogs I kinda burnt out on blog writing. My week off turned into two… or maybe three… and then four. I’ve still been working on here behind the scenes, polishing up content and improving the site in general. But, I’ll admit that I’ve been putting off the actual writing for a while.

Then, last week was the ole Buddha’s Birthday, a public holiday in Hong Kong, though sadly not back here in the UK (Corbyn, add it to the list?). I found myself getting sucked down the rabbit hole of Pinterest ‘Buddha Quote’ pins with equal amounts of procrastination and (p)inspiration…

Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.

Buddha Quote Peace- Young Buddhist Monk With Umbrella Read more

Blog Number 40: The #40Days40Blogs Challenge Finale!

Blog Number 40 - Cover

…Aaaaaaaaaand blog number 40! Yay! Although there were times I thought this day would never come, Easter is finally here and I am finally writing and hitting Publish on blog number 40 of my #40Days40Blogs challenge.

It’s been a bit insane, but all worth it in the end. Of everything that I’ve even given up for Lent, ‘being unproductive’ was definitely the toughest. Just in case you missed a few, for blog number 40 I’ve included a roundup of everything I’ve written as part of my #40Days40Blogs challenge:

Travel Catch-ups

Blog Number 40 - Laos

One great thing about challenging myself with #40days40blogs is that it gave me the kick up the butt I needed to finally post all my stuff about my trip around Southeast Asia. I had loads of notes and thoughts lying around, but I just needed the time and dedication to edit and publish. Read more

Things I Learnt From Writing 40 Blogs in 40 Days

40 blogs in 40 days - Cover

Say it with me! One more blog! One more blog! ONE MORE BLOG! That’s right. This blog is number 39, which means that it’s the penultimate blog of my #40days40blogs challenge! It’s been a bit of a roller coaster ride, but here is what I have learnt from writing 40 blogs in 40 days…

1. 40 is a really, really, really large number.

40 blogs in 40 days - #40Days40Blogs
Blog 1: #40Days40Blogs | This Lent, I’m Giving Up Being Unproductive

OK, duh. But, writing my first post about committing myself to this challenge and creating a cute little hashtag for myself made #40days40blogs seem like a great idea at the time. I’d given up chocolate for Lent before and it was fine. 40 days is long, but it’s doable, right?

Skip forward a couple of weeks and I’m realising that writing 40 blogs in 40 days means dedicating three or more hours every day to writing a decent post (and it’s mostly more). That’s a minimum of 120 hours. That’s at least five whole days I’ve spent on WordPress. Read more

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