International Slavery Museum

For years and probs for many more to come, Black people have been trying to explain that slavery is not where our story starts. The curriculum taught in schools isn’t helping, the shows we have on TV aren’t helping either. So, it’s always great to see when an institution is doing its part to educate the masses effectively.

The International Slavery Museum is very comprehensive and I thoroughly enjoyed my exploring. I felt pride, I felt inexplicable sadness and hope – it was a rollercoaster of emotions.

  • There are three main themed galleries:
    • Life in West Africa – exploring the story and culture of Africa and its peoples, who are central to the story of transatlantic slavery.
    • Enslavement and the Middle Passage – revealing some of the brutality and trauma suffered by enslaved Africans on the voyage across the Atlantic; then the oppression of their lives on plantations in the Americas.
    • Legacy – highlighting the continuing fight for freedom and equality; the contemporary impact of transatlantic slavery, such as racism and discrimination; and the achievements of the African Diaspora.

Here are some pictures from my visit:

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World Museum (Liverpool)

The World Cultures gallery showcases World Museum’s huge collections from Africa, The Americas, Asia and Oceania. Featuring more than 1,600 objects, the gallery explores the exchange of ideas and objects between Europe and the many cultures represented in the displays.

The Museum was a pleasant surprise, I loved the way it showcased the different cultures and also continued the conversation surrounding museums and their complicity within systems of oppression.

It’s also FREE, and you can donate what you see fit.

The ‘Black’ story is full of so much culture and richness and visiting off of the back of the Euros loss – it just felt so timely.

There is an Egyptian part of the museum, that has a mummy on display – so be prepared. I have many thoughts on this but we’ll keep them for another time…

I hope you enjoy x

Shots from the museum

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Liverpool

This summer has been all about the staycation, so we got involved 😉

Up to Scouseland we went, here’s a rundown of everything we managed to do/see:

  1. Liverpool Wings (Baltic Triangle)
  2. Chinese Arch
  3. Liverpool Cathedral – (Britain’s largest cathedral)
  4. River Cruise
  5. Royal Albert Dock
  6. Merseyside Maritime Museum and Slavery Museum
  7. Tate Liverpool 
  8. Royal Liver Building 
  9. Walker Art Gallery
  10. World Museum (click the link for more)
  11. SuperlambbananaDeveloped for the 1998 ArtTransPennine Exhibition, the sculpture is both a comment on the dangers of genetic engineering and is heavily influenced by the history of Liverpool: historically, both sheep and bananas were common cargos in the city’s docks.
  12. Liverpool wall of fame
  13. Cavern Club
  14. Cilla Black statue
  15. Boujee

Sights we didn’t get to see:

  • Liverpool Stadium 🏟 
  • Beatles museum 
  • Quirky Quarter 
  • Crosby Beach (20 mins by train from Liverpool Lime Street) 

Liverpool is so easily walkable and many of the places to visit are next to each other so you save money on transport.

We were genuinely surprised that we enjoyed our time in Liverpool and we would 100% recommend making your way up north.

Keep up to date with us on @trippinwithsj // @sarahambitious xx

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Longitude Festival

Aside from travelling we love a good festival, so when we heard about Longitude in Dublin – it was must we attended.

Longitude attracts crowds in the 40k range, so issa proper festival.

We flew into Dublin with Ryanair via Stansted; the airport experience was terrible and Ryanair even worse (!) but we move. Stayed in an airbnb that had a dog in it, chileeee – it was a lot.

Here’s a snapshot of what went down.

We had Solange, Sza, Jacob Banks, J HUS, Anderson Paak and The Internet – just to name a few.

It was the sickest line-up for RnB that we’d seen in a very long time.

So, we’ve sold you on it being a vibe. Here’s what you need to consider:

  • Flight: £30 with a low-cost carrier
  • Airbnb/Hotel: £40-ish between friends (Central location with access to buses or walking distance to Marlay Park)
  • Festival tickets: £80 – £180 (It’s a 3 day festival but you can buy day tickets, also note you will be charged in Euro – so use a card that doesn’t charge extra fees)
  • Bring: a poncho/raincoat, it’s the UK and even it summer the rain is raining, power bank, small bag – the festival usually sends out a reminder

All in all the festival and experience was amazing and we’d defo do it again if the line-up makes sense.

Longitude returns in 2022! and it promises to be bigger and better.

Keep up to date with us on: @trippinwithsj // @sarahambitious x

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Karneval der Kulturen

So there’s a carnival in Berlin. So it was only right we checked it out.

Where to stay: Kreuzberg (quality wasn’t amazing) or Blucherplatz

Karneval der Kulturen is a multicultural festival in Kreuzberg, Berlin, celebrated annually since 1996 around Pentecost weekend. It’s four fun filled days; the Carnival of Cultures occurs at Blücherplatz, in Berlin’s Kreuzberg district. 

It is described as: “A proud expression of hybrid cultural identities” – The organisers of the festival proclaim that “the Carnival of Cultures is open to everybody and all forms of cultural expression. It is regarded as a platform for a proud expression of hybrid cultural identities, containing traditional and contemporary elements. It includes and attracts all age groups, professional artists and amateurs, people from all walks of life.”

Carnival of Cultures is all about celebrating a peaceful co-existence between all the different culture’s that call Berlin home.

The carnival is fun but doesn’t top Notting Hill by any means, but I mean being abroad with your friends and the bacchanal – it could be worse!

We attended a range of events and the party didn’t stop until the early hours.

This year the festivities will be on the 15th August. So if you can why not make your way down. As opposed to the big street party it usually is it’ll be much smaller activities spread out across the area to keep inline with Covid guidelines.

Have a look at how we enjoyed when we went.

As always keep up with us on IG @trippinwithsj x

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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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What to see…

So, Crazy Rich Asians put Singapore on the map for us! It was always somewhere we’d wanted to go because of the Marina Bay Sands and Supertree Grove, but seeing it presented in such a beautiful way just made us want to go even more.

Singapore is such a beautiful city state, it houses over 60 islands! but only 3 are inhabited.

So what’s the lowdown on visiting Singapore? What should you do? Where do you eat?

We hear your questions and have a list for you, keep scrolling…

What to see:

  1. Changi airportbest airport in the world for 8 years in a row, it’s very rare that an aiport makes a must see list, but Changi deserves its accolades!
  2. Marina Bay Sands – is a hotel and the main attraction is its pool. If you are just looking for a nice hotel, there are other Singapore hotels that offer better value. If swimming in the pool is on your bucket list, then it is worth every penny!
  3. Garden by the bay – is an iconic attraction, it houses a range of attractions. It’s a must-do when in Singapore
  4. Sentosa Island –  is an island resort off Singapore’s southern coast, connected to the city by road, cable car, pedestrian boardwalk and monorail. Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline rush or a day of exploration, a world of adventure awaits you at Sentosa. (Trippin’ Tip: Keep an eye on bus times)
  5. Universal Studios – a theme park located within Resorts World Sentosa on Sentosa Island, Singapore. It features 28 rides, shows, and attractions in seven themed zones
  6. Little India – to explore delicious cuisine, visit a temple and do a bit of shopping too
  7. Amazing architecture – so much to see on every corner. Get the Hop on, Hop off bus to make your way around quickly.
  8. Orchard Road – to shop, to eat, to see, to people watch

Keep up with us on @trippinwithsj x

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Beijing 101

We like to give some quick fire tips for visiting destinations we have visited, so here’s Beijing’s!

So you want to visit Beijing/mainland China 🇨🇳, here are some things to consider:

  • Check your route works with the transit visa, you don’t need to go through the costly Chinese visa process if you’re not in China for an extended time period. Luckily there has been a new 24/144 hour transit visa introduced; there are a few rules you and your itinerary need to follow to be eligible but all in all – it’s really straightforward 😁
  • Download a VPN. Download a VPN. Download a VPN. I think you get what you need to do…
  • Don’t be alarmed if you see bears sat a restaurant table – someone didn’t forget their teddy. The bears are put there so you don’t feel lonely if you’re sitting alone.
  • Learn a few phrases, hello or thank you.
  • Stay photo ready – if you’re black or have distinct features, local people will stop you for pictures and videos.  Sometimes without your permission (!)
  • Be prepared for whatever season you’re going. Beijing is very open air, so when it’s hot – you feel all the heat and its quite dry. Same way when its cold, you’ll feel all the cold.
  • You can use your travel card to make purchases and get around. Taking out cash isn’t necessary.
  • Watch your step. It’s quite common for local people to spit on the ground, so depending on the area you’re in, just look out.

If you’ve been to Beijing/China, what was something you had to bear in mind?

Save and share this if you found it useful. As always, keep up to date with us on @trippinwithsj x

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The Great Wall

Exploring the Great Wall was the main draw to visiting Beijing, because we love a UNESCO site and a world wonder; okay!

Visiting the attraction doesn’t have to be arduous or unattainable; keep reading for our tips.

Why was the Great Wall built?

  • The primary function of the wall was for protection from invasion by Mongolian and Manchu armies from the North.

How far is the Great Wall from Beijing:

  • Badaling is approximately 1.5 hours by car or about 2.5 hours by tour bus. 
  • Mutianyu is about 2 hours by car.

When to visit: Autumn or Spring

  • Autumn brings a different variety of colours to the leaves and greenery around the wall which makes for a pretty sight.
  • Spring brings awesome weather and less people.
  • Summer is still nice but it does get super hot.
  • Winter brings frost-covered scenes but the cold air will feel even colder due to the wind.

Do’s:

  • There is more than one entrance up to the Great Wall, so depending on what you’d like to see and how long you have – this could be a full day excursion.
  • We visited the Mutianyu part of the wall – it’s the most restored section of the wall and offers the best picturesque views.
  • You can hike to the top or you can get a cable car up and down.
  • If you are feeling adventurous – get a toboggan down!
  • Remember there is no shade for the majority of the walk; so sunscreen, water and flannel.
  • Be prepared for the elements in whichever season you go.
  • Book a tour guide with reviews online; they can offer you further insight into the history.
  • Try some local cuisine in the Great Wall park.

Top Tip: Avoid the Great Wall during Chinese holidays, or you may get caught up in the crowds.

Don’ts:

  • Don’t wear open-toed shoes; there are loose pieces of rock and insects. There have been sightings of snakes in the bush around!
  • Plan/try to camp on the wall.
  • Take pictures in precarious positions – it’s an ancient structure.
  • Be a litter bug!
  • Forget tissue if you’d like to use the toilet.
  • Run or walk too fast; seriously – there is loose rock everywhere.
  • Don’t climb on the windows of watchtowers, especially unrestored ones that might collapse.

We hope this answers some starter questions you have about visiting the Great Wall.

Stay up-to-date with us on: @trippinwithsj

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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