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Where should I eat in Singapore?

There are so many choices for places to eat:

  • Wild Honey – I think this is a midpoint on the spending scale, and it is worth every penny. We tried their brunch and the pancakes were heavenly.
  • Jumbo Seafood – if you really wanna ball out! But I think about this special fried rice often, it was a serious something. 10s across the board. I highly recommend.
  • Hawker Markets; the biggest one is Chinatown Market. Delicious food options, drink options and on the cheaper side
  • Eating out in SIN is expensive but the flavours are phenomenal. There are supermarkets so you can do some cooking of your own if you feel too and much cheaper prices restaurants, just check online.

Keep up with us on @trippinwithsj x

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Rome 101

  • Fly into Fiumicino (FCO), slightly more expensive than CIA but better connected.
  • Use your card everywhere, cash for souvenirs
  • Buy a city pass or stay centrally and walk around city instead

Here are our top sites to see in Rome, Rome is such a walkable city – things we love! So it’s easy to do a lot of these in one day.

  • Trevi Fountain – find out more about this amazing fountain here.
  • Pantheon – is a former Roman temple, now a Catholic church. A great spot to sit and people watch or grab a bite to eat at nearby restaurants.
  • The Colosseum – is an oval amphitheatre in the centre of the city and is the largest ancient amphitheatre ever built, and is still the largest standing amphitheater in the world today, despite its age!
  • Roman Forum – also known by its Latin name Forum Romanum, is a rectangular forum surrounded by the ruins of several important ancient government buildings at the centre of the city.
  • Spanish Steps – are a set of steps, climbing a steep slope between the Piazza di Spagna at the base and Piazza Trinità dei Monti, dominated by the Trinità dei Monti church at the top. It’s a lovely sea of people; on their lunch breaks – a welcome break after a long day of walking.
  • Piazza Navona – is a public open space in Rome, Italy. It is built on the site of the Stadium of Domitian, built in the 1st century AD, and follows the form of the open space of the stadium.
  • St. Peters Basilica – is a church built in the Renaissance style located in Vatican City.
  • Sistine Chapel – a chapel in the Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the pope, in Vatican City. You could spend hours, literally in awe of the intricate and beautiful paintings on the ceiling.
  • Palatine Hill – which is the centremost of the Seven Hills of Rome, is one of the most ancient parts of the city and has been called “the first nucleus of the Roman Empire.
  • Vatican / Vatican City – you may get to see the Pope during a processions, it also gave me Twilight vibes – the Volturi and all.
  • Trastevere – is one of Rome’s most colourful neighbourhoods. While it may be less touristy when compared to the ancient town or Vatican City, it has to be said that it does remain firmly on the tourist trail – but that’s not to say it’s not worth a visit! Restaurnats, cinemas – lots of choices. 

Food to try: Pasta, Pizza, Gelato – bye-bye waistline.

Have you been to Rome? What’s your favourite thing to do there? If you found this useful, share and save it for later x

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Baraka Natural Aquarium

Baraka Natural Aquarium is located in the northern part of Nungwi. As with everything these days, I originally saw it on the gram and was very pleased that it matched up to my expectations 😻😻.WE LOVE TO SEE IT 🗣⁣

Baraka is a turtle rehabilitation centre run by local people; the turtles here have been rescued from fishermen capture. They are then nursed back to full health before being released back into the wild. You can wade through the shallow water in the low tide, and swim with fish and other small marine animals.

Price: $10 to get in and the seaweed needed to coax the turtles closer is provided. If you would like to snorkel, you can hire gear in destination.

Here are some tips for making the most of your time:

  • No prebooking – just arrive turn up and you will be directed to the location.
  • Arrive early just as they open to get a shot without other people – I say early rather than later because the sunlight hitting the water is something special.
  • The turtles are just trying to eat, so you can very easily bribe them with the seaweed provided 😂⁣
  • Seaweed is salty; so bring a towel and water to wash your eyes out. (I learnt the hard way 😂)
  • There are showers on site – so you can bring a change of clothes
  • It’s by no means a whole day activity.
  • The turtles will bite! Once they know you have the seaweed they’ll swarm.
  • The turtles have a rubbery texture and they don’t seem to mind you stroking them (follow any instructions given by the guides).
  • Don’t put on too much sunscreen if you plan to go into the water, it will contaminate the water and we don’t want that for the turtles.

Photo op tips:

  • When you walk in, find the cove to your right and coax turtles with seaweed. It’s a good point for a photo with no one else in.
  • If you want a picture on the podium in the middle, you’ll need someone high up to capture it for you.
  • If you’re a confident swimmer, go further out and again use the seaweed to coax the turtles

Most importantly, have fun! It’s an amazing experience.

As always, keep up to date with us on @trippinwithsj // @sarahambitious x

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Nungwi Beach

Nungwi Beach is one of the main areas you will find information about online when planning a visit to Zanzibar, and for good reason. It has powdery white sand, turqouise blue water that simply looks unreal – I remember standing in awe. I never get tired of looking at beautiful water.

Nungwi is all you expect from a tourist beach front; restaurants serving a variety of cuisines, water sports and regular party boats that include food, bottomless drinks and music you can groove to. I even got some beautiful henna done.

Here are 10 reasons you should visit Nungwi if you go to Tanzania:

  1. It’s an island paradise(!) 😍 (hyperbole?, yes but no)
  2. It’s warm all year round. Zanzibar is located near the equator and gets sunny weather most of the time, so tan me up please! (Averaging up to 32°C & 9 hours of sun) 🌞😎
  3. Beautiful sunset views. Again because Zanzibar is on the western coast at the top of the island, its perfect to get your insta moments and have people wishing they were laying up there too. You can enjoy a drink on a rooftop as the sun sets or get on a sunset cruise on a dhow. (Did someone say baecation criteria being ticked?) 🌅
  4. Experience nature up close. Baraka Natural Aquarium is a conservation site run by locals, but that deserves a blogpost all of its own. So keep an eye out 😉
  5. Nightlife! As the sun sets, the beach comes alive. Visit Cholo’s Bar – it’s the oldest in the village. 🥂
  6. Enjoy local flavours. There are countless restaurants that will cater to your tastes, you have everything from French inspired to classic Italian in addition to local flavours. 🥘
  7. Build a dhow. You won’t actually do the back breaking work yourself, but you can get a personal look at how it’s done. Dhows are used to catch fish and other seafood in Zanzibar, and some of the fisherman will give a ‘Dhow building 101’. 🚣🏾‍♀️
  8. Walk, walk, walk. Locals are used to tourists walking around, but please be respectful of the local culture and cover up – shoulders and knees. Try the village market and get the best in local fruits and veg. Try the local faves; date nut bread, fried plantains and octopus! Spice galore again – so much to take back home for friends and family.
  9. Melting pot of cultures. Nungwi beach is in Zanzibar which is an important location for the spice trade, trade always brings people together and as people pass through they leave bits of their culture behind. Asian, European and African cultures, can be seen in the religion, values and cuisine.
  10. Beach boys. The souvenirs will come to you, or maybe it’s a dhow cruise you’re after? Water sports? A picture. The Maasai people will try and sell it all, but they are not overbearing. A firm ‘no’, and they will leave you alone.

There are many beautiful beaches in Zanzibar, but Nungwi stays top 5 no debating. Nungwi has so much hustle and bustle, but you still feel secluded; I don’t know but it’s beautiful. 🧘🏾‍♀️

Best time to travel: All year round; June – October, January and February are the driest months

Places to eat: Le Macis Zanzibar

As always, keep up with us on @sarahambitious // @trippinwithsj x

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Mombasa

Mombasa is Kenya’s oldest and second-largest city. It sits along the coastline, so you’ll have access to fresh seafood! And beautiful coastline views.

Mombasa was one of those places that I found via Instagram, I love visiting as many places as possible in one trip. I love walking around old towns and learning all their old history, you see the things that were left behind and the parts that have been included into the present day-to-day life.

Places to visit:

13th century afro pick
  1. Fort Jesus. Mombasa offers a blend of cultures; due to the colonial past the mark of each group can be seen in the city walls. Fort Jesus which was built by the Portuguese – (well it was physically built by Kenyan slaves under the instruction of the Portuguese but I digress 👀). My guide explained how the Portuguese came very arrogantly, but their only motive was to trade. The British came and spread Christianity ✝️, the Omanis spread Islam ☪️ causing great divide amongst the coastal Kenyan people. ⁣It’s weird because a building that was used to oppress now offers a livelihood for so many in Old Town.⁣
a tortoise

2. Haller Park offers some more animal lovin’! It is the transformation of a quarry wasteland into an ecological area. Kenyans are serious about their nature conservation, (aside from it obviously making up for a significant amount of their GDP) they feel it’s their job to keep the animals and earth safe. Haller Park is a true marvel to me and one of the many things we LOVE to see. If you time your arrival well you’ll be able to see various animals at their feeding times – giraffes 🦒(not as phenomenal as the Giraffe Centre), crocodiles 🐊 , hippos 🦛 and some elderly buffalos 🐃 too. ⁣

⁣It’s a fun day out and can be tied on to the back end of your exploration of Mombasa. ⁣Insider tip: listen out for the story of the Haller millipedes.

3. Spice Market – spices, herbs, coffee or tea leaves. It would be silly to not grab a bag of something and bring it back home with you. I see it as extending your holiday ever so slightly, the Kenyan coffee and tea is the truth!

4. Moi Avenue – is known for two pairs of giant aluminium elephant tusks. The tusks were commissioned in the 50s for Queen Elizabeths visit to Kenya, they also serve as a reminder to Kenyan trade poachers that elephants should never be paoched for the ivory trade.

Places to eat: Cafesserie Mombasa

It’s also worth mentioning that if you are safari’d out, Mombasa is a great gateway to other areas of Kenya that allow you to experience some hiking and/or cycling. I genuinely think there’s something to do for every type of traveller in Kenya.

As always, keep up to date with us on @trippinwithsj // @sarahambitious x

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Mexico 101

This is by no means a conclusive post that includes everything you need to know before tripping’ but it will list some things that we think will be useful to know before going.

Staying connected:

  • Telcel data sim – £7 for 1GB, unlimited social media usage. They are the strongest data provider in Mexico, so don’t bother with any other network. You will need to activate the SIM card so I wouldn’t bother buying one at the airport, wait until you’re closer to your hotel and find a Telcel store/outlet.
  • Download Google Maps when you are connected to the internet. You can access Google Maps offline, so getting around is so much easier.
  • Most restaurants have WiFi, like most places you’d visit. So there’s an opportunity to preserve your data.

Getting around:

  • Hire a car – car hire is really cost effective in Mexico. The majority of the roads follow a straight route, so it’s a really easy drive. (£50 for a week inclusive of standard insurance)
  • ADO buses – if you are not a driver or a confident driver, the ADO bus system is the perfect option. The buses are air conditioned and amazing value for money.
  • Hire a driver – the hotel you are staying with may know someone willing to be your driver for your time, or if you meet a taxi driver and build a rapport they may be willing.
  • Learn basic phrases – don’t be that person only trying to speak English and not at least trying. Just don’t please.

Money:

  • If you have a travel money card or Monzo – great! Just withdraw your money in destination.
  • If you have cash, avoid changing all your money at the airport – the rate is never the best.
  • Remember: to change money at the forex, you’ll need to take your passport with you.

Shopping:

  • You only get VAT back at the airport for luxury items bought at the airport, don’t get sucked in by the market vendors who tell you you’ll get it back. Just haggle for a lower price.
  • Find a supermarket if you have a sensitive stomach, the food is heavy on meat and it’s worth having some fruit on hand in case you want something different.

For more highlights check out our IG: @trippinwithsj // @sarahambitious

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Icelandic bites

So, the food is expensive – yes. But IT. IS. WORTH. IT. 🤤 

Whether it’s at the petrol station stop or the high end restaurant – the Icelandic quality of food is UNMATCHED.

And for all of you non-tap water drinkers, just bring your water bottle and be amazed. Wow, I never thought I would miss tap water.

Here are my top places to grab a bite to eat:

Braud & Co. do the most amazing baked goods 😍 wow, their cinnamon rolls are just divine. You can usually wait for a fresh batch to be made, if your visit is timed right. I ended up buying two for later. They were just that good!

Rok – if you’re in Reykjavik and need a bite to eat after seeing the church, this is the place to come. I opted for seafood and it didn’t disappoint. The bread too! *chefs kiss*

Lava @ Blue Lagoon – depending on which package you book, it will include a reservation for a meal and complimentary wine 🍷 *clink clink*. Again with the flavours 😍 I ordered the langoustine soup as a starter and personally the taste was slightly overpowering – so I wouldn’t recommend. For a main, I opted for the lamb 😍 and it ticked all the boxes.

Perlan – The Pearl; other than being a great observation deck for the Northern Lights. This is a great spot for food. Seafood soup – slapped! Steak in red wine jus – slapped! Creme brûlée 😍 – you get where this is going 😋 it has a really cute vibe and they were playing Sade as we walked in. I mean talk about good vibes 😂

The CooCoo’s nest – is a cosy restaurant, with blankets and fur all over to make you feel like you’re in a nest I guess. It’s a no reservation and more of you turning up and hoping the wait isn’t too long to be sat down. The breakfast options here are insane; the portions are generous, the flavours and it all tastes so fresh 👅

Wherever you decide to eat in Iceland, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. It’s pricey at most places, but I really think it’s worth it. The quality is top tier.

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Tourin’ Athens

If you go on a trip and don’t eat something new or see a new site, you didn’t really travel. And that’s on life!

So with that being said, here are my top things:

  • to do
  • to look out for
  • to try in Athens. Enjoy 😉

DOING UP TOURISTReasons to visit Athens:

  • Ancient Greek ruins
  • Greek cuisine 
  • Sculptures
  • Taverns 
  • The Acropolis 

You can pretty much see all the architectural sights in one day if you’re up early and up for walking. A pass costs around €20, unfortunately there’s no longer a cheaper student option to access the sites. You can also go on an inexpensive walking tour and use this as an opportunity to meet people or go it alone! 

Trippin’ tip: if you’re being a Scrooge, you can see the sites from the outside (apart from the Acropolis) so you don’t need to pay anything 🙈

**NOTE: Most sites are closed on Sunday and all close around 5pm (except the Acropolis which stays open until 8pm)**

Top Trippin in Athens tips 

Watch out for pick pockets! – The little kids that you think are cute may be up to no good. And that gentlemen that lets you walk in front of him as you walk down the stairs from the acropolis…he’s watching your pockets! 

Walk everywhere! – Athens is somewhere you can easily get your steps in! 

Foodie? – Eat like a local. For tips on good food places, ask the locals, they usually have the best hidden spots! 

For brunch: I visited Ellyz Athens which is a cute little pink spot serving up good vibes and pancakes with that readymade Insta aesthetic. 

You can find it on the back streets behind the flea market, before you reach the Acropolis. It can get very busy though so prepare to queue! 

For dinner: A visit to a rooftop bar is a MUST whilst in Athens. Electra Rooftop Garden has the most break taking views of the city. The food personally was a bit underwhelming, but the cocktails were sensational. 

Have you been to Athens before? What was your favourite part? Here’s what 15 seconds in Athens looks like…

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Athens

Visiting Athens in February was my first solo trip, with all play and no business (aside from an assignment I had to do).

I had booked the 5 day trip just under a month in advance in January, but ended up spending the first two days completing said assignment for uni. The change of pace and scenery was very welcome. Fruity cocktails with a view of the acropolis? Sounds like a bit of me…

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ARRIVING IN ATHENS 

I flew direct with BA from London Heathrow and the flight was around 3 1/2 hours. BA are being super flexible because of the pandemic and the constantly changing rules (Boo Boris! Boo Miss ‘Rona!) so you can book now and change your flight at no additional cost unless the dates you want to fly are more expensive! 

(Follow us on the gram for useful hacks @trippinwithsj 😉)

I used Uber in Athens to get to my hotel which was located in the city centre and it set me back just under €40, which is not bad for an airport transfer. The metro system is pretty easy to navigate and next time I’ll consider using it – it only about 45 minutes. If you’re good at navigating public transport and want to save your coin for more exciting things you can also use the metro to get to Acropolis station at the grand price of €8 (or €14 for two people). 

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WHERE TO STAY 

I stayed at two different hotels because I like to switch up the vibes. 

The first was Athenaeum Eridanus Luxury Hotels (£84 for 2 nights with breakfast included). It’s a 10 minute walk away from the M3 metro which goes straight to the airport.

The room was perfect for one, with a double bed and cute little bathroom. 

I spent my first two days here in their restaurant/bar completing my health econ assignment, accompanied by a glass of white, spag bol and the most splendid view of the Acropolis.

The staff here were A1 👌🏾 I fully recommend, for downtime with some comfort at an affordable price ✅

The second hotel/apartment was Pame House.

Recommend for: Being close to the hustle and bustle of the city centre and night life, major tourist attractions and the flea market

For the breakfast offered with your stay, you are given a voucher to redeem at a breakfast joint a 2 minute walk from the hotel which plays chilled R&B – vibes. 

Most rooms have a balcony and luckily my room was no exception. Here’s some action that started popping off on one evening.  

Hotel option if you’re ballin on a budget: £ Athenaeum Smart Hotel – @ £103 for 3 nights for two sharing that works out to £51.5pp. I know you’ve spent more @ Zara sis so don’t play yourself. 😅

And for my luxury living crew: £££ Elia Ermou Athens Hotel – @ £450 for 3 nights for two sharing; you’re spending a pretty penny but I promise the experience is worth it, just check out the views 😍

(Visit Little Kook; an amazing themed cafe you never know what you’ll find.)

Hurry back for my insider tips on where to eat and what to do as a tourist in Athens.

J x