"When you feel stuck or dissatisfied in your life it's a signal. And it's not a signal that your life is broken. It's a signal that one of your most basic needs is not being met. Your need for exploration.
Everything about your life, about your body… grows. Your cells regenerate, your hair, your nails, EVERYTHING grows for your entire life.
And your soul needs exploration and growth. And the only way you’ll get it is by forcing yourself to be uncomfortable." - Mel Robbins
Singapore stopover on a budget. Eat the city's best street food, explore the botanic garden, see wild monkeys and marvel at the supertrees.
The best gifts for travellers in 2017. Christmas is right around the corner 🎁🌲
Singapore's supertrees at the Gardens in the Bay. I've never seen anything quite like this while travelling. These 22-metre high structures are covered in 162,900 plants of over 200 species which form the living skin of the trees! 11 of the supertrees are embedded with environmentally sustainable functions like photovoltaic cells to harvest solar energy. When day turns to night, the trees are lit up and you can lie on the grass underneath them about watch the lights twinkle. 🇸🇬
Before I went to Morocco, I read a blog where a female traveller said that the harassment was so bad that she “felt like bloody raw meat in a lion’s den.”
I had expected the worst, but my experience of travelling as a woman in Morocco wasn’t like this at all.
How to spend the perfect weekend in Marrakech 😏
Thought I might die whilst climbing Toubkal, but I survived and here's a guide to hiking north Africa's highest mountain.
Sustainable tourism is important to me because travel shouldn’t be harmful. We should travel in a way that can benefit the people and communities we’re in, and that mitigates negative impacts of travel on the environment. Sustainable travel is about showing we care – and I think that’s important.
https://visit.org/blog/en/what-is-sustainable-tourism via Visit.org
So I just had what's called a hammam. It's basically a public bathhouse which felt a lot like what public swimming pools feel like. All the local Moroccan women go there weekly to wash.
You get there and then you take off all your clothes except your swimming pants, and walk into a hot steam room full of naked Moroccan women. They're all speaking Berber and a smatter of French, but English no. I tried to keep my little towel with me to sit on but was scolded by a local woman much older and larger than me. So she swept away my towel from under me - which I had no say about and truthfully very little I could've done to stop her.
A group of women motion me over and insist I sit with them, and giggle at me as I look like bambi. I'm thrown this plastic red mat which all the women instruct me to wash with water and sit down on, even though I want my towel back. What I want is of absolutely no consequence here though. I'm then told to rub myself in this brown jelly that looks like a lump of dates but I'm told is an olive oil based soap.
Then a big Moroccan woman comes and scrubs me with a glove that feels like sand paper. It peels off a massive amount if dead skin, but the scrubbing is hard and all over. She chuckles and makes humming noises which are oddly comforting in this odd and naked experience. It takes about 30 minutes in which my arms and legs are pulled around, I'm pushed to the floor with my face on the ground staring at the cracks in the tiles and put in various positions.
The large woman then throws small buckets of water over me. After that I'm soaped and shampooed super fast. I then am told to stand up and stoop, and have massive buckets of water thrown over me, alternating hot and cold water. The woman took some amount of glee in this, which given it was pretty funny. It felt a lot like being very young maybe with a mum who really can't be assed washing you in the bath.
And then I'm clean, apparently. All the women around me who are nattering and washing their butt cracks simultaneously wave me goodbye. I get dressed and stumble out of the hammam and I can safely say I've never been so pleased to see my taxi driver who insisted on coming back to get me.
Our Morocco travel adventure is nearly at its end, but here's our travel route around the south of Morocco where there are cities, mountains, deserts, sun, sea and surf.
Green juice and the beach 👏👏
We've found ourselves an amazing coworking space in the Moroccan beach/surf town of Taghazout. Here's the view from our desk this week 👌
Mt Toubkal! We made it all 4167m up. It was the toughest hike we've ever done. Scree slopes, altitude headaches and the hot Moroccan sun on our backs. But we made it.
Made it to Imlil this afternoon. The sun has just set and we're
listening to villagers play drums and the call to prayer sounds, cows in the hills below and ate a home-cooked tagine on the balcony of our gite. Tomorrow, we'll be trekking up Toubkal - the highest mountain in northern Africa. 🇲🇦
Our new lunch staple. Batbout is a Moroccan bread that you can buy freshly cooked from the stovetop on the street for 2.5 dirhams (around 20p). 🇲🇦
When your first Moroccon breakfast is 👌 Beghrir (Moroccan semolina pancake), lemon cake, homemade yoghurt, honey and jams, watermelon and a boiled egg on the roof terrace.
So today is Eid and in Morocco locals slaughter sheep in the street to celebrate the end of Ramadan. The tiny streets in the medina are red with blood and sheep heads are charred until blackened all day long. We passed down narrow lanes past hot charcoal grills with open fires like this one, burning sheep corpses all day. Arriving for Eid not the wisest move for vegetarian travellers like us.
Marrakech, Morocco. Hot, dusty, beautiful and full of tagine. 🇲🇦
Caribbean island anyone? 🌴🌴
Caye Caulker (pronounced “key corker”) is a Caribbean island off the coast of Belize that is known for excellent snorkelling. My clearest memory of Caye Caulker is sitting at the end of a jetty watching the sunset. Suddenly, the water itself moved underneath me as an enormous stingray, at least as wide as my outstretched arms, glided past my toes that were dipped in the water below. [ 1,499 more word ]
Nothing says happy birthday to me like a 30-mile hike along the Seven Sisters Cliffs!
Only a few weeks until our Morocco trip and we're scouring travel blogs for the best ideas 📝 Here's one of our faves so far from along dusty roads.
Hippie beach town paradise in Mexico 🏖🍃
Vietnamese coffee to wake me up on a Sunday morning please! ☕
Who else wants to be there right now? ✨ Under a big duvet, of course!
All these beautiful Moroccan riads on Airbnb, how will I choose? All for under £30 per night. ✨
If you've not used Airbnb yet, get £30 off your first trip: https://goo.gl/3MzJht
Pura vida, Costa Rica.
Did you know cork from the bark of cork trees can be used to make bags and wallets? This cork bag and wallet is handcrafted in the Algarve and the material is 100% vegan and sustainable. Much to my surprise, cork is super soft and bendy.
Check them out here: https://goo.gl/FaJcgN
Packing for your travels? This ethical packing list has got you covered.
Why have I not yet been to Sri Lanka!? 🤔
Who else is getting hungry thinking about all this delicious veggie food? 🌱
Find out why I love Guanajuato so much...
Who wants to drink with me? The coolest of stuff is starting to happen thanks to sustainable / green / ethical / zero-waste morals (whatever you wanna call being good to the environment and the people living on it).
Guanajuato, I'm so sorry it's taken me five months to write about you. But you're the most beautiful city in Mexico!