Stonehenge clouds

There’s nothing quite like a good bit of British weather. The sort that gets right in your face, blows you off your feet, stings your eyes with fat drops of water, and makes a mockery of your umbrella.

This was the weather that found us at Stonehenge on a recent day trip from London - a bitingly cold squally wind combined with freezing raindrops. The sort of thing that would usually have you hiding in a pub and warming yourself by a nice, reliably crackling fire.

It didn’t dampen the mood of our guide though. No, Phil, representing City Wonders Tours, barely batted an eyelid as the wind threw his raincoat around his body in unholy shapes. He just kept on telling us, with barely controlled excitement, all about the history and discoveries of one of Britain’s most fascinating ancient monuments, as we attempted to remain anchored to the Earth.

Stonehenge, Bath and the Cotswolds–A Day Trip From London

Stonehenge clouds

There’s nothing quite like a good bit of British weather. The sort that gets right in your face, blows you off your feet, stings your eyes with fat drops of water, and makes a mockery of your umbrella.

This was the weather that found us at Stonehenge on a recent day trip from London - a bitingly cold squally wind combined with freezing raindrops. The sort of thing that would usually have you hiding in a pub and warming yourself by a nice, reliably crackling fire.

It didn’t dampen the mood of our guide though. No, Phil, representing City Wonders Tours, barely batted an eyelid as the wind threw his raincoat around his body in unholy shapes. He just kept on telling us, with barely controlled excitement, all about the history and discoveries of one of Britain’s most fascinating ancient monuments, as we attempted to remain anchored to the Earth.

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Sigiriya from a distance Sri Lanka

I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Sri Lanka twice, once for just a few short days, and then again for around a month where I had more time to explore. I was asked recently how I would recommend spending two weeks in this gorgeous country, and thought a nice long itinerary post would be the perfect answer.

Two Weeks in Sri Lanka – Suggested Itinerary plus Travel Planning Tips

Sigiriya from a distance Sri Lanka

I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Sri Lanka twice, once for just a few short days, and then again for around a month where I had more time to explore. I was asked recently how I would recommend spending two weeks in this gorgeous country, and thought a nice long itinerary post would be the perfect answer.

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Sunset on the Cambrian coast California 6

We recently accepted an invitation from Visit Cambria to come and take a look at what their region has to offer, all part of my ongoing efforts to see as much as of California as possible during my time here (see more of my California exploration here).

It turns out Cambria has plenty of things to do, from exploring rambling hilltop castles, to spying on Elephant Seals, to walking on sparkly, moonstone-filled beaches. And that’s before I even mention the food and wine! Of which there might have been some. You’ll have to read on to find out.

Things To Do In Cambria: Beaches, Castles and Dining

Sunset on the Cambrian coast California 6

We recently accepted an invitation from Visit Cambria to come and take a look at what their region has to offer, all part of my ongoing efforts to see as much as of California as possible during my time here (see more of my California exploration here).

It turns out Cambria has plenty of things to do, from exploring rambling hilltop castles, to spying on Elephant Seals, to walking on sparkly, moonstone-filled beaches. And that’s before I even mention the food and wine! Of which there might have been some. You’ll have to read on to find out.

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Yosemite view of El Capitan
The nice people over at Vanguard Photo have recently asked me to take some of their new travel photography gear on the road, find some nice things to take pictures of with it, and share it.
Given that travelling around and taking pictures of nice things is pretty much My Favourite Thing, obviously this was a no-brainer.
Another no-brainer was the first place I went to start this process off – Yosemite National Park in California.

My favourite photography spots in Yosemite

Yosemite view of El Capitan
The nice people over at Vanguard Photo have recently asked me to take some of their new travel photography gear on the road, find some nice things to take pictures of with it, and share it.
Given that travelling around and taking pictures of nice things is pretty much My Favourite Thing, obviously this was a no-brainer.
Another no-brainer was the first place I went to start this process off – Yosemite National Park in California.
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Tower bridge and river Thames london uk

Normally, having my luggage mislaid in transit is not a disaster. In London in particular, the lost baggage delivery system is somewhat efficient (presumably through lots of practice), and in our case, after going through the requisite paperwork after our luggage failed to appear on the carousel, our bags were promised to be delivered the following afternoon.

In this particular instance, the lost baggage was a little more critical. Not only because I was just wearing a t-shirt and it was both unseasonably cold and pouring with rain, but also because I had a visa appointment at 9am the following morning, and all the supporting paperwork I required for that was in my luggage.

Review: Staying in London with FindAFlat

Tower bridge and river Thames london uk

Normally, having my luggage mislaid in transit is not a disaster. In London in particular, the lost baggage delivery system is somewhat efficient (presumably through lots of practice), and in our case, after going through the requisite paperwork after our luggage failed to appear on the carousel, our bags were promised to be delivered the following afternoon.

In this particular instance, the lost baggage was a little more critical. Not only because I was just wearing a t-shirt and it was both unseasonably cold and pouring with rain, but also because I had a visa appointment at 9am the following morning, and all the supporting paperwork I required for that was in my luggage.

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Middle Falls McCloud Shasta Cascade from above

Up in the northeastern part of California, around a 3.5 hour drive from San Francisco, is the Shasta Cascade region. This part of California is excellent for lovers of the outdoors and landscape photographers like me, offering mountains, lakes, potentially live volcanoes and of course, hiking and photo opportunities galore.

Shasta Cascade and Redding: California’s Great Outdoors

Middle Falls McCloud Shasta Cascade from above

Up in the northeastern part of California, around a 3.5 hour drive from San Francisco, is the Shasta Cascade region. This part of California is excellent for lovers of the outdoors and landscape photographers like me, offering mountains, lakes, potentially live volcanoes and of course, hiking and photo opportunities galore.

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Westminster abbey shot with LG G4

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of LG. The opinions and text are all mine.

Ah, smartphones. I remember my first one, almost a decade ago (!) -  a venerable device with an actual keyboard, with which I could access the internet using a technology called WAP. At least, I think that’s what it was, my memory is a little hazy.

Unfortunately, back then, no-one had really twigged as to the potential that this technology could hold, so other than finding out train times it wasn’t all that useful.

Reviewing the LG G4 Phone– Plus how to win one yourself!

Westminster abbey shot with LG G4

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of LG. The opinions and text are all mine.

Ah, smartphones. I remember my first one, almost a decade ago (!) -  a venerable device with an actual keyboard, with which I could access the internet using a technology called WAP. At least, I think that’s what it was, my memory is a little hazy.

Unfortunately, back then, no-one had really twigged as to the potential that this technology could hold, so other than finding out train times it wasn’t all that useful.

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View from train Molise mist scaled

It seems fitting to be writing this article whilst I’m sitting on a train. Admittedly, of all the train lines in Europe that you could take with the prize on offer (the clue is in the headline), the 9.50am from London Paddington to Oxford, with stops at Slough and Reading, might not be at the top of your list.

Win a month’s first class travel for 2 in Europe with Rail Europe!

View from train Molise mist scaled

It seems fitting to be writing this article whilst I’m sitting on a train. Admittedly, of all the train lines in Europe that you could take with the prize on offer (the clue is in the headline), the 9.50am from London Paddington to Oxford, with stops at Slough and Reading, might not be at the top of your list.

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HP Stream 8 review

This branded content was produced by me as part of the HP & Intel #WorkFromHappyPlace project, and I was compensated for taking part in this campaign. All thoughts remain my own – see my code of ethics for more information.

Work. It’s not a word that conjures up tremendous excitement I suspect. I am lucky, admittedly, in that I get to do what I love (for the most part at least!), although if I had my way I’d spend all my time out in the field taking pictures, and letting Jess handle everything else.

Still, that’s not the way the world works. There are photos to edit, e-mails to answer, posts to write, social media to manage… sure, not exactly heavy, but still. It’s got to be done.

Working from My Happy Place With the HP Stream 8 Powered by Intel Inside®

HP Stream 8 review

This branded content was produced by me as part of the HP & Intel #WorkFromHappyPlace project, and I was compensated for taking part in this campaign. All thoughts remain my own – see my code of ethics for more information.

Work. It’s not a word that conjures up tremendous excitement I suspect. I am lucky, admittedly, in that I get to do what I love (for the most part at least!), although if I had my way I’d spend all my time out in the field taking pictures, and letting Jess handle everything else.

Still, that’s not the way the world works. There are photos to edit, e-mails to answer, posts to write, social media to manage… sure, not exactly heavy, but still. It’s got to be done.

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Stadspark

Today’s post is a guest post from Sofie, who writes at Wonderful Wanderings. You can read more about Sofie at the end of the post, in the meantime, take a walk with her through her current home town of Leuven in Belgium!

While I’ve only been living in Leuven for about four years now, I’ve come to the city ever since I was little. First it was with my parents, then it was as a teenager, mostly to go to the movies or to go shopping. As a student I explored Leuven’s cheap nightlife and enjoyed the many festivals. Now that I live here I still do all of those things, but I’ve also learned to appreciate the parts of this city that might seem ordinary at first, but are anything but that.

A Walk Through Leuven

Stadspark

Today’s post is a guest post from Sofie, who writes at Wonderful Wanderings. You can read more about Sofie at the end of the post, in the meantime, take a walk with her through her current home town of Leuven in Belgium!

While I’ve only been living in Leuven for about four years now, I’ve come to the city ever since I was little. First it was with my parents, then it was as a teenager, mostly to go to the movies or to go shopping. As a student I explored Leuven’s cheap nightlife and enjoyed the many festivals. Now that I live here I still do all of those things, but I’ve also learned to appreciate the parts of this city that might seem ordinary at first, but are anything but that.

Read More