So last weekend during our holidays I went to Austria to visit my friend Klara who had been a teaching assistant but her contract was finished before ours. I had never been to Austria so I was looking forward to it . If I was to write about everything that we did this post would probably be the length of a college essay so instead I will give you a quick over view and then a sample of the many pictures that I took. Arriving to a near winter wonderland with snow everywhere and a 6 hour car ride which should have only taken 1 due to the motorway being closed the trip was off to an interesting start. Staying with Klara’s family was great although having no German was interesting but they had some English or Klara would translate or we’d just get along with some gestures. We did lots of travelling for the four days that we were there, travelling to Salzburg and Vienna and also discovering the Wachau region with towns such as Melk and Krems which was amazing. Along with discovering the different regions we also went on a food tour of Asutria from schnitzel to sachertorte to knodel we tried to try as much as we could while we were there.
It was so nice to see Klara’s home and to be shown around be her, we probably would have been lost without her translations.Of course saying goodbye at the end was hard as we don’t know when we will see each other again, the problem with having friends who live all over the world. We had such a good trip and I can’t wait to head back to Austria soon and discover it some more.
So last week we decided to tick another destination off our travel list and we headed to Hyeres for the day for a bit of exploring. We met up with an Italian assistant there who kindly showed us around. We spent the day basking in the sunshine , walking up to the ruins of the chateau , having lunch in the park and finally ending by heading to the beach to relax until we had to head home.
Hyeres is such a nice little town and it was great to wander around with the sun shining down on us, spring has arrived. Instead of me telling you a play by play of our day I thought I would just show you some of the photos I took. I will definitely be heading back to Hyeres to explore more .
So the school holidays have arrived which means only one thing, it’s time to get the travels underway once again. I was very excited to head off to Edinburgh for the weekend not only because it was a place I had never been and wanted to explore but also as I was going to be doing it with some of my favourite people who I hadn’t seen in a very long time. Who are they you may ask? I’ll tell you my friends from Erasmus Charley and Courtney who I don’t get to see very often as we live in separate countries. We planned this little trip away before Christmas so that we could meet up and actually see each other in person and not via a computer screen. So Friday afternoon after finishing school at 12pm I headed for the station to catch my flight at 6pm, I wasn’t wasting any time. After catching my connecting flight in London I eventually arrived in Edinburgh to Courtney running towards me, scaring me but in the best way. It was then that I found out that unfortunately Charley’s flight had been cancelled and she wasn’t going to make it which was a bit of a bummer as we all hadn’t been together in so long but that just means we will have to plan another trip soon. I picked up a pasta salad in M&S in the airport before we made our way to the Airbnb which was about a 15mins walk from the centre and was perfect. We spent the evening chatting and catching up before we headed to bed to get a good night sleep.
After an amazing night sleep we got up ready to explore Edinburgh. We decided to head out for brunch to set us up for the day and after some research on Instagram and blogs on where to go we set off. In the end were we had decided on going was full and there was a 45 minute wait which wouldn’t do for our stomachs so we headed back to restaurant we had seen on the way called The Refinery. The interior was amazing with tiled and wooden tables and little copper extras, it was definitely an Instagram dream. We ordered a Hot Chocolate to heat us up after the brisk winds outside which was perfect. I ordered a sausage sandwich and Courtney had the eggs Benedict. I have to say that the food was okay , we were starving and it was nice but it was not something that would have me running back for more but it was nice. After being fuelled up we headed towards the castle to have a look. It was beautiful seeing a view over the whole city of Edinburgh even if it was so windy we nearly blew away. We just walked around the outside of the castle as it was £16 to enter which was a bit steep. We headed down the cobbled Prince’s Street to have a look at the shops and head into a cathedral. At this point the wind had really picked up and it had also decided to start raining which was not the best. As the 6 Nations has begun and Ireland were playing we decided to find a nice warm place to watch the match and eat some food. We decided on a restaurant called Le Monde which was lovely.I had the mac & cheese with pesto and Courtney had a fish finger sandwich and then we also treated ourselves to a nice mocktail. The food and atmosphere was amazing and Ireland also won their match which was a bonus.
What can be better than a nice Hot Chocolate on a cold day!
Loving my ‘fake’ glasses that I bought 🙂
The weather had not gotten any better while we were eating and it was still freezing and wet which is not the best weather for exploring. We decided to get something for dinner to bring back to the apartment and then have a video call with Charley to catch up with her. Sunday was Courtney’s last day as she had to head back for work and I wasn’t heading home until Monday. We had the morning to explore so decided to hit up the gallery and museum. The national gallery didn’t really have too much to see so we made our way to the National Museum of Scotland which was amazing. It is so big that we din’t get to see it all so it means I will definitely have to make another trip to Edinburgh which I am not complaining about. I found that it was a little like the history and science museum in London, with exhibitions on animals, space and even fashion. Something for everyone and lots of interactive things to keep kids both small and large entertained. Then unfortunately it was time for Courtney to catch her train back home and it was time for us to say our goodbyes. We may not get to see each other as often as we would like but when we do it is always amazing. Once Courtney was safely I headed to have some lunch , I know eating again but when it’s cold and windy outside it has to be done. I headed to a bar called George IV Pub which was really cosy and did great food. I had the bangers and mash which was just gorgeous and also a hot chocolate. I spent about 2 hours just sitting eating and reading my book. Afterwards I was going to head out and do some more exploring but it had gotten darker, wetter and colder so I thought I would call it a night and head back to the apartment to relax in the warmth.
The National Museum of Scotland
The weekend was amazing but all to short as I packed my bags to head back to France. The weather was not our friend for exploring a city but that only means that I will have to come back and see what else Edinburgh has to offer , hopefully when it is a little warmer. Despite the weather I had a great time and it was so lovely to see Courtney and catch up, it was a shame the Charley couldn’t make ( stupid cancelled flights) but we will all have another adventure together soon.
If you would like to see what I got up to while I was away, I also vlogged the trip which you can see here.
I wanted to update you guys but haven’t been in the mood to write so here is a short post with lots of photos about our night in Nice.
So this past weekend we headed to Nice for the night as it was one of the girls birthdays and we wanted to celebrate. We got the train down Saturday morning and spent the day wandering around the sights before heading to our Airbnb that evening. We also got to watch the sunset over the sea which was just gorgeous and something I have been wanting to see since I got here. This was the first time I have ever stayed in an Airbnb and it was lovely. It was a shared apartment so the owners were still there but they were so friendly and made us feel very welcome. That night we met up with some other assistants for dinner and then drinks to celebrate. We met some other Irish girls which was lovely and then people from America, Germany, Canada and Puerto Rico which was amazing. It really was a world affair. It felt very weird to be speaking English as I am so used to speaking French with the girls here but it was a nice change. We had a lovely evening and were out until about 3am, which has to be the latest since I have been here and it was also our first proper night out which was nice.
Now enjoy the many pictures of the sunset that I took because I mean sunsets…who doesn’t love them and I’ll talk to you soon.
What night out of mine would be complete without a couple of crazy selfies!
So I graduated this week which I still can’t believe I am saying but it actually happened. I am now the proud owner of a BA International in European Studies with French and History. Four years of hard work and I now have the degree to go with it. It is kind of bitter sweet I suppose as I was over the moon to have graduated and can’t wait to move onto the next chapter but at the same time it is a little sad. I have made so many new friends and meet some amazing people over my four years in college so it will be hard not to see them everyday. Of course we will stay in touch and I know that I have friends for life but going from seeing each other everyday to all going different directions is hard but I guess that is life and growing up.
I went to Maynooth University and I can’t recommend it enough. It really doesn’t feel like a university but more like a community. Everyone is so friendly and willing amongst both staff and students that the community atmosphere is well and truly blooming. Along with this as we are so close to the town you really feel like a part of it and that the college and town draw energy from each other making it a great place to study. There was never a dull day on campus with activities always on the go and something for everyone. The atmosphere that I always felt on campus made it such a nice place to study and I know I will be a Maynoothian loud and proud for the rest of my life.
I had a great day and seeing all my friends after the summer was amazing, catching up on their plans for the future. I guess now it’s onto the next adventure and seeing what is around the corner, saying goodbye to four of the best years of my life. Believe me college is one of the best experiences ever, yes the assignments and essays aren’t always the best but the people you meet certainly will be.
As the saying goes all good things come to an end and that was what happened to our road-trip.We spent Thursday (day 7) in the car driving back up to my house and relaxing.I had tag that night which Charley came to watch but then we relaxed , sad but happy that all the travelling was over. With just Friday before Charley headed home on Saturday we decided to head into Dublin to have a look around. The last time Charley was over we went into Dublin but the weather was not the best and we didn’t really stay very long. I also really wanted to head to the Magnum experience and thought this would be the perfect opportunity.
Friday was nice and sunny so we headed in on the bus. After wandering around for a little bit we made our way to the Magnum experience in Arnotts. I have wanted to do this for ages and couldn’t wait. You get to design your own magnum . They coat it in chocolate before your eyes and then you can have three toppings sprinkled over the top. I went for milk chocolate coating and then topped it with cookie crisp, toffee crunch and sprinkles. Then it was drizzled with some white chocolate. As the ice cream comes straight out of the freezer the chocolate begins to harden straight away and makes for the most amazing indulgent ice cream. I have to say it does get a little messy when it comes to eating it and I certainly got half of it around my face but that’s just all part of the fun and it was just too good to think about the mess. That’s what tissues and wipes are for. When we finished our Magnums we headed for Aungier Danger Doughnut shop. I started following them on Instagram when they first opened and have been lusting over their doughnuts every time I scroll through my feed so I knew I had to give them a visit. We were on a little bit of a sugar rush after the magnum so we decided to get one each and bring them home with us. I got a Oreo marshmallow and Charley got a simple jam.
With our blood sugar levels successfully heightened we strolled around the city in the sun before heading to the bus to head home. After a great day we settled on the couch and started a Harry Potter marathon because why not, what better way to spend our last night. Saturday brought our trip to an end as I dropped Charley to the airport and we said our goodbyes.We are already planning our next trips and meet ups for the three of us to be together again as Courtney was not able to come on the road trip.It really is hard when your best friends live in another country but that just means when we are together we make the most of it and keep in constant contact when we aren’t.
Today was another day to relax and it was the first day that we actually had no plans to do anything for the first time on the road-trip. We spent the morning reading and I also got started on editing my vlogs from the trip. The day was a little overcast but being beside the beach we couldn’t not go and have a walk on the sand and listen to the sea, so after lunch we did just that. Of course this being Ireland there were people in the sea swimming as we walked along in our jeans and jackets. We don’t get much sun or nice weather so we have to make the most of our summers whatever the weather. I love being beside the sea and walking along the beach is one of my absolute favourite things to do. I also took the opportunity to catch some Pokemon as I have completely given in to the hype and love it. We strolled back through the town before heading back to the house to get ready for dinner.
Seeing as it was our last official night on the road-trip we decided to treat ourselves and head out for a nice dinner before we headed back to my house. We decided to try the gastro pub in the town called Tides which was only new and we were looking forward to seeing what it was like. Of course being by the sea we thought it would be the perfect time to order fish and chips. What came out was two massive fillets of cod with chunky chips all served on some newspaper which I thought was a very nice touch. It was lovely even if there was way too much. We sat for three hours over dessert , tea and hot chocolates while we put the world to rights waiting for the sun to set. There is nothing I like better than a good sunset and even though it was little cloudy it was still amazing. I set up the camera for a time lapse and we took in the wonderful beauty that was before us. Nature really does make me stop and think sometimes at how amazing the simple things really are. Sitting watching a sunset with one of my best friends is one of those little memories that will stay with me forever.
When the sun had set and the air got a little cooler we headed back to the house to relax on our final night before we made the trip back to my house the next day and the trip was over.
Sorry about the large gap between this post and the last but I have just been caught up with life and also procrastinating by watching the Olympics, which I am loving by the way, but here is Day 5 of the road-trip.
With the bulk of the driving for the road-trip done we took the next few days really handy and just relaxed. For the first time on the trip we didn’t have to leave at any time or do anything so we had a lie-in and just took it handy. We decided to head into Wexford town for a look around and to have some lunch. The weather was gorgeous and one of the hottest days of the year so it was nice to just stroll around the town and take it all in. I spent most of my summers in Rosslare and so heading into Wexford town was always something that we loved to do and a treat for us as kids. It had been a while since I had been there so it was nice to see how it had changed and bring back memories from my childhood.
After lunch we decided to head out to Hook Head Lighthouse to have a look as again it was somewhere that I used to love to go to when I was younger and it really is beautiful. There is just something about lighthouses that are just amazing. The weather was spectacular , with the blue sky as a back drop to the lighthouse it was breathtaking. While we were in town we bought some brownies and so while I took a little time lapse of the lighthoue we sat in the sun and ate them. I don’t think the day could have gotten any better, just relaxing in the sun with wonderful view. We headed back and stopped in to visit my aunt and cousins who were also down for a summer holiday and then we headed back to the house.
A simple dinner of pasta was just what we needed and then we settled in for the night to relax on the couch. We still had some brownies left and so enjoyed them with some ice-cream while watching Legally Blond 2. It was great to rest up after the long miles we had done over the last few days.
When we were in Doolin the day before we saw a cute little cafe called the ‘Sea Salt Cafe‘ which we decided to get up earlier and drive to for breakfast. This was probably our best idea of the trip because the breakfast was amazing. We both had pancakes and bacon with honey and an orange juice that was squeezed right before our eyes.I have to say anyone heading to Doolin should pop in for food or just a coffee and a scone. We also got a nice hot chocolate to take away and headed back down to the harbour to relax for a little bit. The weather had cleared down below but we were passing time waiting for the clouds to clear up on the cliffs so we could give them a second go. We were able to use the same ticket as the day before so we thought we might as well give them another shot. Charley did some reading on the rocks while I was busy taking pictures and video clips. After about an hour we headed back to the Cliffs of Moher for round 2.
There was still some light fog when we arrived but within 15 minutes of us being on the cliffs it cleared and let me tell you it was worth coming back to see. The sheer scale of the cliffs and then seeing the blue sky merge with the blue sea was just wonderful. It really was breathtaking and I could see why so many people from all over the world come to see them. After this we hit the road to head to Rosslare where we would be staying for the next few nights in my aunts house. We stopped at Bunratty Castle for some lunch and a break as the drive was 3 hours long. With Spotify on the go and our wonderful karaoke skills in full swing it made the journey fly by.
We stopped in the shop in Rosslare to get some provisions for the next few days and then headed to the house to relax.Of course heading down to try see the sunset over the sea first. The next few days were going to be a lot more chilled than the previous ones with a lots less driving and more relaxing as our roadtrip was coming to an end.
With a good nights sleep under our belts and a nice hot cooked breakfast we set about the day. We took a little walk around the town in the morning, making friends with some donkeys, while I caught some Pokemon (so good) before we started the day. Our first stop was the Ailwee caves which were amazing. Walking under ground with rock all around was quite something. Our tour took around 30minutes and we got the history of how the cave was discovered, which really was fascinating. After the caves we headed for the Burren or what we thought was a Burren centre as we were already in the vast landscape of the Burren which is 1500 hectares in size. Google maps didn’t really take us where we wanted but there were other cars parked up so we just parked and got out to explore. Although there was not centre or anything it was lovely to just walk with such beauty around us and a great silence in the air. Of course we took some photos and generally just took it all in.
After a quick drive by Father Ted’s House (just so we could say we were there) we headed to Lisdonvarna for a spot of lunch. Re-energised we headed for the Cliffs of Moher via a stop off in Doolin. The weather was not the best as it was quite windy and cloudy but we were making the most of it. As we drove towards the cliffs we were engulfed in clouds and our visibility was very bad but we thought we would give the cliffs a go anyway. Let’s just say that you would not have known there was a sea below other than you could hear the waves but for us it was just a sea of white. It made for some cool pictures and we made the most of it but you couldn’t really see anything.
We then headed for our final stop of the day and our home for the night Miltown Malbay and the Central Hostel. We were surround by clouds the whole way which made for an interesting drive. The hostel was your typical hostel and we had a shared bathroom but it was clean and cheap and a place for us to lay our heads. After going out to get some dinner we headed back to our room and watched Tangled on my laptop as we had no WiFi in our room and wanted to chill out after the long day. Then it was off to bed to get some rest before day 4 of the adventures.