Searching for clear skies

This weekend was the start of my June Euro trip with my boyfriend to Spain, Italy and Greece. We left sunny London hopeful for some Spanish sun but upon arrival realised we would be living in our rain ponchos for the weekend. What we thought would be a sun, beach, hike filled weekend turned out to be a tapas, indoor, spa retreat. And I loved every second of it.

It kind of annoys me how much weather can dictate your day / travel plans but more so how much we let it dictate our attitudes. Yes rain can be a major frustration for travellers but the fact is you really can’t change it. All you can do is change your plans and above all keep your holiday spirit!

We started our trip with a well needed rest. What could be better then staying rugged up in doors in a quaint Spanish room with a balcony overlooking the old town. Rain trickled outside over the flower decorated balconies. Now the holiday really begins- mmm time to relax. We spend the late hours of the evening feeding ourselves with unlimited options of pintxos and cheap wine. Saturday we awake to the sound of more rain and take the opportunity to catch up on some long needed sleep. The day is followed by a trip to the most delicious bakery I’ve ever been to, a windy walk by the beach, two hours in the most amazing spa and a shopping spree at Spain’s largest Zara. Nights were filled with more tapas, wine and sangria to warm us up. On our last day we pondered the windy coastline before retreating for more food, gelato, and dinner at a delicious seafood restaurant.

By Monday morning 6am we were heading out from the old town, through the murky cloud cover off to the Italian west coast. Despite the constant rain and cold which limited our wardrobes to pants and jackets, I still loved every second of San Sebastián- from the incredible food selection from tapas to helado to patisseries to the romantic alleys and intimate architecture and the friendly and approachable people. I hope you get to experience San Sebastián one day too- rain or shine.

Here are some pictures from our lovely weekend- enjoy!

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A Bittersweet Countdown

In 11 hours I will be leaving my flat in London. In 13 hours I will be reunited with my boyfriend of whom we had a 5 month long distance relationship. In 36 hours we will be flying out of England and I’m not too sure when I’ll be back. In 27 days I will return home to Sydney, Australia.

It feels so strange looking around my empty room. Just a week ago i could hear the laughter of my friends in the hall outside my door. There were photos covering my walls. Various peoples bags, clothes, drinks in my room that they had left behind. I had so much but now all that is left is a small silver suitcase packed with the bare essentials and a couple of sentimental things. Everything else- cleared out and given to charity. It’s amazing how much random stuff you can accumulate over five months.

I’m still so in disbelief that on the first day of this year I packed 10kg of luggage and flew out solo to the furthest place from home- London. Knowing no one and not knowing what I was getting myself into. But this turned into the most amazing adventure, and no doubt it was because of the people.

I could not have been more blessed. I am knackered and need to regain my energy for more adventures with my boyfriend when he lands tomorrow. Super excited!! Off to San Sebastian Friday yay!

BARCELONA

No doubt this city is simply a colourful, fruitful, tasty, enchanting artwork! Only being there for four days, I knew I had to make the most of it. Thanks to Mango Fashion (www.mango.com) I was given the amazing opportunity of joining their team, 5 of heir talented bloggers including Sincerely Jules, Gala, Zanita, Gary Pepper Girl and AfterDRK, and 4 of the other winners for a Welcome Summer experience.

In between all the fantastic activities lined up, I had some time to myself to just wonder around the beautiful city. Despite getting lost a couple of times, I loved loved LOVED every second of it. It gave me some time to reflect on life, the summer time and the bright future ahead whilst I pondered through Barcelona. Here are some of my photos from the streets, markets and scenery of beautiful Barcelona! Enjoy! (Click the photo to enlarge!)

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#mangosummer Pool Party!

4 days in Spain and what a 4 days it was. The Mango team went above and beyond in preparing and making sure the bloggers and readers all felt so welcomed and entertained in their beautiful city Barcelona. (For those who don’t know, Mango is a global clothing brand which began in Spain and is now recognised worldwide with stores in over 100 countries. The Mango Summer Experience was a contest where 5 bloggers chose 1 girl each to join them for some fun times in Barcelona. I was luckily chosen by Jules (sincerelyjules.com) and had no idea what to expect! But it blew me away!)

One of the highlights of the trip was the rooftop Pool Party on Wednesday at the Majestic Hotel and Spa located in the centre of Barcelona city. Waking up to a schedule under my door I jumped out of bed, whipped open my beige curtains to the sunshine beaming on my sleepy face and rushed to put my swimmers on and summer clothes- clothing which has been hidden away for much too long thanks to England’s weather.

After having breakfast with one of the other winners (raspberry-rouge.com) and Nicole (http://www.garypeppervintage.com/), including a beautiful selection of the finest meats, fresh fruit salads, homemade yoghurts and the option of a hot cooked breakfast, we made our way back to the lobby and up to floor number 10.

Walking out of the lift, I wasn’t too sure what to expect. What Mango had prepared for us blew us all away! This has got to be one of the best pool parties I have been to- Pool side DJ’s, rooftop view over the sunny Barcelona, food, cakes, drinks all to your choice, DIY bag making classes with a Mango designer, photoshoots, fresh flower headbands, manicures and much much more!

Here are some of my photos which I think give you a pretty good glimpse of the fun we had with the 5 bloggers and their winners of the Mango Welcome Summer experience!

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Everyone was so lovely and friendly! Definitely an experience I will remember for a long time. I just love how down to earth and friendly everyone was! So happy I got to spend some great times with Jules. Ive been following her blog for a while now and love her personal touch and style explored through travel, fashion and photography. She has definitely inspired me to pick up my game with this blog and just fuelled my passion for travelling, photography and style!

Here are some of the photos the boys at Cup of Couple took (http://cupofcouple.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/mangosummer-pool-party.html). I encourage you to see the stuff on their blog, its some amazing work and showcases more of our fun times in Barcelona with Sincerely Jules (sincerelyjules.com), Nicole at Gary Pepper Girl, Sabrina at AfterDrk (http://www.afterdrk.com/), ZanitaZanita (zanita.com.au) and Gala (amlul.com). More updates to come about our paddleboarding class on Barcelona beach, the most delicious beach side dinners Ive ever had and the Spanish spring festival- Primavera Sounds!

Once again thanks to everyone at the Mango team especially Maria, Carolina and Virginia for their thoughtful and dedicated preparation. You guys were the sweetest and most incredible hosts- I’ll be back in Barcelona for sure!