Monthly Archives: November 2012

Bucket List Achievement: Take a Spontaneous Trip Anywhere


Well… This was a spontaneous trip! My best friend Joey from Canada (who flew me to England in September for school) decided to come visit me on during his holidays off work. We decided that we wanted to go somewhere spontaneous and where we’ve never been before in Europe. We downloaded a map of Europe on my iPhone, closed my eyes and my figure landed on… Well… you guessed it… Paris!

We booked a flight to Paris two nights before departure on the Tuesday and our return to Scotland for Saturday. 1) That means we have 4 days and 4 nights in Paris! 2) Joey also wanted to see Scotland before he left back to Canada, hence the return in Scotland.

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We left Leeds after my French class (I know right?) around noon and got a bus to the Liverpool where we would be catching our plane at the John Lennon Airport. Our flight left at 5:45pm England time and landed in Paris 8:15pm France time! This is taking into account that there was a 1 hour time difference . We flew with Easyjet and it was just as cheap and decent as Ryanair. I was content and didn’t have as many advertisements.

 

We arrived at Charles de Gaulle which was the Paris airport (among many) and we had to take the metro from the airport to the center of Paris where we would be staying. We got to our accommodations around 10:30pm and were welcomed with a friendly smile and kind greetings from a lovely Parisian couple who let us rent their living room for us to stay for a cheap price!

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Those who rather save money and stay with locals, as opposed to expensive hotels or somewhat more expensive hostels, check out Airbnb! Great website for saving money on accommodations and getting tips and advice about the city and attractions from local people.

We talked for an hour or so, and the couple told us of all the interesting (as well as touristy) places to go in Paris and even provided a map of how to get to all the places. They were absolutely lovely.

There wasn’t much of a language barrier, and we learned some more French and I’m sure they learned some more English as well! They even said we were there first English-speaking guests, so We were quite honored to be there guest for the 4 nights!

Joey and I unpacked, showered and decided that the next day we would somewhat wing it (since it was a spontaneous trip) and walk around Paris and (hopefully!) come across as many attractions and touristy sites as possible! Then, we slept in our bed, in an old Parisian flat, which had old large keys like from the movie Hugo, and fell asleep to the natural sounds of Paris.

Check out my youtube channel for my Paris videos! http://www.youtube.com/user/BorderlineForFools
Check out my other Paris blogs here: https://cometraveltheworldwithme.wordpress.com/

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Categories: Blog, Easyjet, England, Fall, Flights, France, Leeds, Liverpool, Paris, Scotland, Seasons, Travel Sights, Travel Tips | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Next Stop: The Lake District

Off to the Lake District! And no, it wasn’t affiliated with the Hunger Games; trust me, I wish it was. With giant, attacking swans surrounding the area, I felt like I was already nominated to be Tribute; but not really.

The Lake District was extremely beautiful. I mean B-E-A-U-TIFUL. It’s one of those places that you really have to spend a nice, long weekend up there to really see as many sights, and experience many wonders.

After a late night out on the town, I managed to get out of bed at 7am, and catch my bus at 8:30. The bus ride was approx. 2 hours and on the bus ride there, I met some new friends; which is always awesome. We arrived to a cloudy, misty, and yet gorgeous view of Lake Windermere. The Lake District is so vast, with so many little towns, hills, and sights to see that we were only able to venture around Windermere and Bowness-on-Windermere. This was potentially the most touristy place to visit.

  

After chilling with some giant swans, we began our trek from Bowness-on-Windermere to the town of Windermere. The pubs didn’t open til 12, so by the time we walked all the way to Windermere, the pubs were open, and we all got lunch. We ended up meeting a Canadian and an American at the pub, who were pretty chill and eventually travelled with us for the rest of the day.

Being the tour guide of the pack (since I do a bunch of research of the places I visit, and write down all the places I want to see), I led everyone to a mountain/hill called Orrest Head, where I read that the view was said to be absolutely amazing. The trek up the hill was honestly a walk in the park, and with the leaves changing colours, the paths up the hill felt like I was back home in Ontario. This time of year at home, I would be going on nature walks with my dogs and family. Just going through these nature trails in England made me feel great that I was experiencing my traditional nature walks, but at the same time, missed my family and animals.

    

As we hiked up the hill, we came to a path where a Donkey was waiting to be given attention. We called hime Eddie, and quoted lines from Shrek; he was adorable.

  

~Sometimes life is so busy, you don’t have time to stop and smell the leaves.

This is a quote that really hits close to home. This was finally a day to relax from my busy life style and really enjoy the scenery. A time of serenity. And It was.

We reached the top of the summit, and were all just taken back on how gorgeous and awe-inspiring the view was. This was another time where you just feel on top of the world and feel infinite.

  

Before we trekked up the hill, my friend Kristen brought up the idea of summit brews, which is basically buying alcohol and bringing it with you as you climb the summit. Once you reach the top, you crack open the brews and celebrate! This is exactly what we did. We’re classy like that.

Once we took everything in, we journeyed down the hill and through the countryside, eventually walking along Lake Windermere back to Bowness-on-Windermere to do one more thing that we wanted to do while at the Lake District. And it wasn’t to play with the swans; even though we ended up doing that.

   

WE DECIDED TO BUY A BOAT!

Well… rent one for an hour. But still.
We had our own boat to drive on Lake Windermere, which was just phenomenal.

Because there were 8 of us, we had to split into two boats, which was an awesome idea, because we spent that hour racing, playing chinese fire drill (where you hop out of one boat and switch into the other one…without falling into the water), and pretty much playing bumper cars. It was an fun time, and a liberating experience.

Who gets the chance to drive boats in England? This kid!

Of course we broke into song a few times, especially with I’M ON A BOAT!

We could have paid £7.50 for a boat cruise around the lake, but instead got a really good deal with driving boats ourselves, which was only £6 and a lot more fun!

The day was short, but the spectacular views and good times made at the Lake District that day were memories I’ll remember forever.

~ Ryan

Categories: Blog, England, Lake District, Travel Sights, Travel Tips, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Home Away From Home: Perth, Scotland

One of the main reason why I came to visit the city of Perth was mainly due to the fact that I wanted to send a postcard of Perth, from Perth, Scotland to Perth, Ontario, Canada; where I usually live. I thought it would be humourous to do so.

Like my little town, the city Perth in Scotland is quite small, with not much to do or see. Apparently the city recently became somewhat of a tourist attraction once Perth become Scotland’s seventh city after winning a UK competition marking the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It wasn’t actually a “city” until this year, even though the Scottish people named the town “the city of Perth” in spite of its previous status omission.

The city is small and contains many interesting little shops, but instead of shopping, my friend Ian and I spent our day hiking and nature walking up Kinnoull Hill. We went with a tour guide for the day who lead us up this adventurous summit. If you are ever in Glasgow, check out this guy’s tours; he was one of the best tour guides that I’ve ever had.

 

As the season changes to autumn, I was lucky to have spent the day in Scotland without rain. The weather was gorgeous, and the changing colours of nature were awe-inspiring. Fall is my absolute favourite time of the year, and to go on a nature walk that reminded me of being back home in Canada was exactly what I needed. The air was crisp and cool, the falling leaves and calming sounds of nature led me to be in a very euphoric mood.

The weirdness of this tree was fascinating to me.

 

The nature walk and hike up to the summit of Kinnoull Hill was relaxing and a workout at the same time. The view from the top was just phenomenal though. Why is it that the view from the tops of mountains/hills are always the best views in the world? I need to become a professional hiker/mountaineer, as opposed to amateur blogger and film-maker.

I was really happy I got to spend the day with my friend Ian who is another Queens University film and media student (such as myself), and had Gary as our awesome and humorous  tour guide; he makes my top fav 5 Scottish people I know.

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All in all, I had an amazing Saturday afternoon enjoying the autumn weather by hiking up a Scottish hill. Perth was my home away from home, and I couldn’t have asked for a better day.

Check out the rest of my weekend in Scotland here

Check out my Autumn/Fall Music Playlist here

Categories: Autumn, Blog, Fall, Scotland, Seasons, Travel Sights, Travel Tips, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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