Every journey begins with a single step – and if I’m entirely honest, this month’s travel linkup on green travel and being more sustainable was more of a challenge than usual. It’s never been the most important consideration when we’re planning travel – we can definitely do some work on that.
We try and do our very best on a human scale; we don’t own a car and use public transport when at home and travelling where possible (not to mention the wai-wai express – that’s walking to non-NZers), reduce/reuse/recycle as much as we possibly can, and we adopted a small wild animal into our home – who definitely has a zero carbon paw-print. (She’s also worn a bell for years to protect birds & local animals – now she’s a bit too old and lazy.)
I’ve always dreamed of exploring Turkey. My fascination began in High School when I learned about the Byzantine capital of Constantinople (now called Istanbul) through the ancient empire building of Alexander the Great. (I was struggling to find the words to share our trip to Turkey, so I thought I’d begin with my impressions of Cappadocia and Istanbul.)
We began our trip in Goreme (after landing in Istanbul for the night and then catching an internal flight – I’ll write a full itinerary in a subsequent post) the tourist capital of Cappadocia.
The honey-stone walls of Oxford city centre conjure all kinds of wishes and whimsy – and each time that I’ve stayed overnight in Oxford, it’s like slipping into an architectural Narnia. Disclaimer: On this visit I was an invited guest of Mercure Hotels and Experience Oxfordshire, but all thoughts and laboured literary metaphors are very much my own.
Oxford is one of those cities that seems unaffected by the passing of time.
We drove from London to Belgium, crossing Essex, the southeast of England, a fair amount of France and then accidentally slipped over the border to Mons, Belgium.
As a reprobate island dweller (all the way from New Zealand to Grande Britannia) I still delight at how easy it is to slip between countries in Europe, so we took full advantage of this when spending a few days in France.
It’s fair to say that I fell in love with Portugal on both of my city breaks. This fun loving country seems to be quite the winter sun destination for 2019, and I’ve had quite a few people contact me recently asking whether they should visit Lisbon or Porto for their Portuguese city break.
Both Lisbon and Porto are unique cities, each with an individual character – and sadly it’s not always practical to visit both in the same short trip.