A Seaside Getaway in Arniston, South Africa

Thinking of travelling to South Africa? Summer (December to February) is the perfect time to visit, with long, sunny days, road trips, afternoon wine tastings, and seaside getaways to look forward to! Last year my husband and I spent a long weekend in Arniston, a tiny fishing town located about 3 hours drive from Cape Town. We enjoyed outdoorsy activities such as walking, hiking, bird watching, and swimming in the ocean, and indulged in local seafood and wine. Read on to see why we absolutely love this hidden corner of the Western Cape!

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Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

table mountain seen from kirstenbosch gardens

“Kirstenbosch – The Most Beautiful Garden in Africa”

A trip to Cape Town is incomplete without a day trip to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens! Nestled against the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, these lush gardens are simply bursting with both indigenous and exotic plant and animal life. Kirstenbosch is wonderful for botanists, nature enthusiasts, outdoor lovers, bird watchers, foodies, families, and anybody who enjoys beautiful views and interesting plants. Having grown up in Cape Town, I have visited the gardens many, many times, and yet every time is a new adventure!

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Exploring Napoli & The Amalfi Coast: Mediterranean Paradise On A Budget

The Amalfi Coast has become a popular destination for luxury beach holidays, and it’s not hard to see why – with its dramatic craggy coastline, gorgeous, tiny hotels and B&Bs perched atop cliffs overlooking Vesuvio and the Bay of Naples, delicious fresh seafood, impossibly blue water, and plenty of small-town Italian culture to discover, this slice of Mediterranean paradise is stunning. With unparalleled beauty comes exclusivity, and that can mean soaring accommodation prices and tourist traps. You may have seen the glamour of luxury travel along the Amalfi Coast in magazines and on Instagram, but did you know that you can have your own Amalfi adventure on a budget?

You can still swim in the azure ocean, eat authentic Italian food, and live it up in Positano without getting yourself into debt. With a bit of planning and the help of insider tips, you will be able to have your own Amalfi adventure on the cheap!

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Rome’s Torre Argentina Cat Sanctuary

The Gatti di Roma (Cats of Rome) are well-know and dearly loved as the elegant, adorable, and lazy residents of the city’s grand ruins. These cats are kept happy and healthy by the amazing work of the Torre Argentina Cat Sanctuary, whose volunteers care for them seven days a week. You can visit the sanctuary between noon and 6 pm every day, and play with the furry residents who are fed, sheltered, and given medical care by the dedicated and passionate staff of volunteers.

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Ostia Antica – Daily Life in Ancient Rome

Today’s modern city of Rome has amazing glimpses into the glory of the Roman Empire, with buildings such as the Colosseum and the Pantheon, but these sights are still surrounded by many layers of contemporary history and culture. A visit to Ostia Antica, on the other hand, provides a unique and immersive experience of daily life in ancient Rome, within the ruins of a remarkably preserved and isolated ancient Roman city.

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Elgin, South Africa – A Romantic Escape into the Apple Valley

A Spring Wedding in the Overberg Countryside, South Africa

Last year in October, my husband and I had our family wedding celebration at South Hill Farm in Elgin, just outside of Cape Town. October is springtime in South Africa, which means frequent cloudbursts, apple blossoms, green vineyards, sunshine, and bright blue skies dotted with wispy white clouds. The weekend was absolutely perfect, and every time I look at the photographs of our wedding day and honeymoon, I get homesick.

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The Colosseum in Rome – Fascinating History, Architecture & Trivia

The Colosseum is one of the most iconic remnants of the ancient world. A gargantuan building that has stood for almost 2000 years, damaged only by the looting activities of modern humans, it never fails to impress those who lay eyes upon it for the first time. Its enormous size, ingenious architectural features, fascinating history, and cultural significance make it a beloved sight for Romans and tourists alike.

There is much more to the grand Flavian Amphitheatre than impressive old bricks and stones – it’s a magnificent testament to the eternal glory of the Roman Empire.

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Osterfeuer in Blankenese, Hamburg

Have you ever celebrated Easter / the Vernal (Spring) Equinox with a gigantic bonfire on the beach?

I certainly hadn’t, until I visited Blankenese for the first time over the Easter weekend in 2014. This year we went back to Hamburg to celebrate Easter with family, driving up from Frankfurt on Thursday (6 hours on the road!) with the Osterfeuer celebration on Saturday night and an Easter-egg hunt for my nephews on Easter Sunday. Blankenese is about 30 minutes outside of Hamburg city centre – it’s part of the Hamburg-Altona district – and it’s famous for its beautiful historic houses perched on the hills overlooking the Elbe River. Altona was once governed by the Danish monarchy, and you can see a lot of Danish influence in the architecture of the houses. It’s one of my favourite places in Germany!

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