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.
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
Hey guys. So, I recently participated in the World Nomads Travel Writer Scholarship programme, where I wrote a piece on the theme ‘a place that is unfamiliar to me’. Devastatingly, I didn’t win the scholarship (next year, perhaps?), so here is my entry published here instead, entitled Chasing Home:
When I first arrived in Hong Kong, I described the city as a sensory overload.
Fresh durian and fermented bean curd in the steaming streets of Mong Kok. Strobing neon signs on Nathan Road. Soup noodles slipping from chopsticks held between clumsy fingers. The telltale salty tang of MSG. Tonal Chinese languages with staccato one-syllable words.
I loved it.
The longer I spent in the city, the more it felt like home. Weekends spent hiking in the New Territories or lapping up the sun on the trio of Tai Long Wan beaches. Evenings spent in TST or Central or Wan Chai, drinking overpriced cocktails in tiny bars or sitting on the waterfront with cheap beers from 7-Eleven.
Summers were coated in a thick layer of smothering humidity, while winters sparkled in red and gold, auspicious signs for the coming Lunar New Year. The sunlight was thick and creamy like milk tea in the day, then deep orange like the peel of a mandarin in the evening. Read more
“You’ve slept in a lot of beds,” one of my oldest and best friends said to me a few weeks ago. When I gasped in offence, he was quick to add, “I mean, travelling, of course!” That got me thinking about all the places I have stayed on my travels: some the best hostels in the world, the comfiest of pillows and… some of the worst places I have ever ‘slept’.
After five years of living in Asia, I have pretty much perfected the ability to sleep anywhere. But, there are still a few standout beds that (bed)spring to mind. Here are, in my humble opinion, some of the best hostels in the world and the places I’ve most enjoyed resting my head.
Oh, and a few of the worst, too:
Bad Bed – Noah’s Ark, Hong Kong
Did I ever tell you about the time I moved to Hong Kong and stayed for three weeks in a life-size replica of Noah’s Ark? A life-size replica of Noah’s Ark. How is that possible? Why is that possible? How could they possibly know it’s life-size? All very good questions that I have no answer for. Read more
Don’t get me wrong, I love to travel. I love to go on holiday and lie on a beach somewhere, I love to go backpacking on a shoestring budget and I love playing the tourist both at home and abroad. But, it’s all a whole other kettle of fish when you’re actually living abroad.
The lessons you learn about life, about the world and most significantly about yourself, are invaluable. You don’t just visit a place and learn about it; you become part of it. To better explain how living abroad changes and challenges you, I asked a couple of fellow travel bloggers what living abroad taught them:
Megan Roughley – Where My Travels Take Me
I am fortunate that my family instilled in me the passion for travel. Read more
In all my five years of living in Hong Kong I never got sick of that skyline. In fact, saying goodbye to that view was the very last thing I did before I left for the airport. And with so many incredible angles to see the city from, it’s hard to pick my favourite. Here are just a few of the best views in Hong Kong:
Tsim Sha Tsui Waterfront
We can’t talk about the best views in Hong Kong without talking about TST. This is where the iconic picture of HK’s epic skyline can be found, which is especially breathtaking lit up at night. Although the nightly light show is pure mature cheddar cheesy, it’s also worth a watch at least once. Read more
My passport expires in 2020, but it’s almost certainly going to be filled by then. I’ve even stuck post-it notes onto the few empty pages left to save them from an Immigration officer’s careless stamp. But no matter how much I love flicking through the pages and admiring the ink, I don’t ask how many countries are there?
I don’t count countries.
I see a lot of travel bloggers, travel Instagrammers and travel enthusiasts with a running total on their websites or profiles, ’27 countries and counting!’ And I think it’s great if you want to do that. It’s a great way to quantify the places you’ve travelled to, it’s satisfying to hit the big landmark numbers and it’s good motivation if you want to see ‘all the countries in the world’.
I just don’t think it’s the only way to measure travel (if it can be measured at all). And it’s certainly not for me. You’ll never see a running total on here or on any social media page I’m on and here’s why: Read more
The thing about travel is that the more you do, the more you want to see. It’s addictive. And with each trip, the wanderlust grows stronger. It’s not just itchy feet any more, I’m itchy all over, body and soul! And so, to celebrate my 27th Birthday (happy birthday to me!) I thought I’d share 27 places I have on my world travel bucket list.
Here’s to the next 27 years and ticking them off one by one!
India has been on my world travel bucket list for a long time. I would love to spend at least a month in the country: the Golden Triangle, the Taj Mahal, Hindu temples, the Ganges… if I could time my visit for Diwali or Holi, even better. Everyone I know who has been has said that’s India is incredible. Plus, as a Brummy curry connoisseur, I’d love to discover what authentic Indian food actually tastes like. Read more
Yep, I’ve turned into that girl who starts all her sentences with, ‘When I lived in Hong Kong…’ My room is filled with knick-knacks from places I can’t pronounce. I can give advice on jet lag, travelling with only a carry-on and finding cheap flights online. I can speak in different tongues. If you know me, you’re probably bored of my travel anecdotes.
If you don’t know me, I should prefix this post by stating that, up until three months ago, I lived overseas. I spent five years in Hong Kong, with a few intervals in Italy (because I like to be complicated like that). I never planned to leave the UK or live in other countries, especially for so long, but it just kind of happened. Read more
Hong Kong may be better known for its electric skyline, imposing skyscrapers and sky-high rent, but did you know that 75% of the Fragrant Harbour is actually countryside? Having called Hong Kong my home for the past five years, I love the city but I also love to get out of it! So, here is my list of the best hikes in Hong Kong, which offer the most scenic and breathtaking views of HK’s epic coastline, lush hillsides and pretty little islands.
1. Dragon’s Back
Difficulty level: 6/10 Starts: Shek O Road near To Tei Wan village Finishes: Big Wave Bay (Tai Long Wan) Beach
The undulating Dragon’s Back is easily accessible from the city, winding around the east side of Hong Kong Island, and offers beautiful coastal scenery without being too strenuous. As one of the most famous hikes in Hong Kong, you probably won’t find yourself hiking alone, but you will definitely be able to see why it’s so popular. Read more
First of all, let me start with a disclaimer: the Liebster Award is definitely not a big fancy trophy. It’s not some kind of Blog Oscar (Blogscar?) or the ‘Digital Nomad’ equivalent of a Grammy. Kanye West isn’t about to come out of the woodwork with a round of, ‘Imma let you finish…’, Meryl Streep isn’t going to get in trouble for a politically-motivated acceptance speech and Adele isn’t going to say ‘fuck’ every five minutes.
What is the Liebster Award?
The Liebster Award is an ‘award’ passed from travel blogger to travel blogger by nomination. The aim of the award is to connect writers together and raise the profile of lesser-known travel bloggers (like lil ole me). Read more