Leeds

SPENDING CHRISTMAS IN EUROPE!

This post is more or less for my family and friends back home as a way to update them on when and where I will be during my holiday vacation!

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December 7th – Last Day of Classes!

December 8th til 19th – Traveling All of Ireland with my Australian friend Freya!

December 20th til 23rd – Traveling to Belgium, and visiting Bruges & Brussels with my Belgian friend Caroline and fellow Queens friend Savannah!

December 24th til 27th – Spending Christmas with Savannah & reunited with Freya in Berlin, Germany!

December 27th til 30th – Traveling to Austria, seeing Vienna and going skiing with my other fellow Queens friend Kirsten in her cousins winter cabin!

December 30th – Fly back to the UK

December 31st – Spending New Years Eve in Edinburgh!!

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Now that I have actually written all my travel plans down… I’m actually overwhelmed on how much I am traveling over the Christmas season! The realized why I wanted to travel so much… It’s so I’m constantly busy, and thus keeping my mind off the fact that I won’t be back home in Canada for Christmas with my family and friends. As I won’t be home for Christmas, I figured I’d treat myself with all the money I’m saving from flying back to Canada, and then back to the UK, that I would travel in Europe over the Christmas break, and this is what I will be doing.

Keep checking back to my blog for recent updates, as I will be blogging as I travel this holiday season! 🙂
Also, Have a listen to my personal Christmas music playlist here!

Cheers, Ryan.

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Categories: Blog, Canada, Christmas, Edinburgh, England, Flights, Germany, Leeds, Scotland, United Kingdom, Winter | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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/

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

Next Stop: London, England

Where Do I Begin.. to express my love and amazing trip to London, England…

Bloody hell.

IT WAS AH-MAZING. THERE IS SO MUCH TO SEE; SO MUCH TO DO.

I plan to go back very soon.

In the meantime, I will share with you my itinerary of all the things I did in the 3 days I was in London.

DAY ONE

  • Read about it here

DAY TWO

  • After a crazy night out in London with Joey and Danielle, we woke up a tad late in the day (partially due to going to bed at 4am, but also because of jet lag). Danielle’s auntie decided to help Joey and I plan our day out with a partial hand-made map of london with all the key locations, historical sites, as well as suggestions for little shops/restaurants along the way there.
  • We began our journey through the beautiful paths of Hyde Park. Did I mention how beautiful it was? Because it was; I couldn’t manage how stunning and gorgeous it would be throughout the change of seasons. Those who walk through it daily are some very lucky chaps.
  • Joey and I got sidetracked on our way to Buckingham Palace as a huge parade for the ending of the Paralympics was in the midst of beginning. The parade was being held right in front of Buckingham Palace, so we never got to see our first iconic English building on our adventurous journey through the busy streets of London. Even the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Walk was blocked off for the parade. Sad face.
  • As we squeezed through the massive and excited crowds, we managed to get to one of the most historical and significant icons of London; Big Ben and the Parliament Buildings.
  • Big Ben and the Parliament Buildings are a sight to see. You get the best view from the Westminster Bridge, which is where the photo of me on the right was taken. The architecture and building itself was magnificent. A real sight to see.
  • In the central area where Big Ben and the Parliament Buildings are located is the Westminster Abby, as well as various other historical buildings. To get into any building costs money, in some cases, about 16 pounds (25 CAD) to 25 pounds (40 CAD). We decided to choose the cheaper route and take pictures from outside the building and move on. 
  • We decided to buy a ticket to go on the London Eye, which was well worth the pounds. For those who don’t know what the London Eye is, basically, it looks like a giant ferris wheel that slowly takes you up to a height where you can see an incredible view of London. I would recommend it to anyone to go on “The Eye”, basically the view is just phenomenal.
  • Afterwards, we decided to be very North American and grabbed some Starbucks and use the wi-fi to message Danielle, letting her know where we were, as well as upload pictures and message others (with out iPhones, since I still wasn’t on a british network at the time and wasn’t paying for international charges)
  • On our way back to Danielle’s aunties place, we decided to check out Covent Garden market, which was really cool. Lots of little shops, flea markets, live music playing, street performers and the roads reminded me of Old Montreal.
  • On our detour back home, we came across Trafalgar Square, which was really beautiful and extremely busy. That is where the National Art Gallery is located, however, by the time we got here, there wasn’t much time left in the day. I plan to go back to this Art gallery as it is free and showcase lots of amazing works of art; another day, another time.
  • As the parade for the paralympics began to die down, Joey and I managed to catch a peak at Buckingham palace, as well as managed to take a picture with one of the Queen’s guards.
  • We managed to get back right before night began to fall and had a lovely Indian dinner. This was our last night in London, and an early one, seeing as how Joey and I would be catching an early bus from London to Leeds; where I will be living for the next 10 months.
  • But that journey to Leeds is another story.
  • Click here for my journey to Leeds.

~

I was extremely happy that Joey and I were able to fly to London two days early as had been expected and stay at my friend’s aunties place in order to experience London for the first time. I was extremely grateful for my stay and will definitely be coming back to London very soon. x

~Ryan

Categories: Blog, England, Leeds, London, Travel Tips, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hey Leeds, I Just met you & this is crazy! Where did the time go, you stole it maybe?

Officially moving to Leeds has been officially exhausting & time-consuming. Honestly, I have no idea where the past 5 days have went.

Every day that I’ve been here, I’ve left my residence early in the morning, hit the city centre (which may I add, is breathtaking) and exploring, shopping and trying to keep in contact with my parents and friends back home. I literally just got my phone working tonight, and for the past 3 days have had no contact with the outside world, beyond the limited free wifi that was available at the local starbucks.

Now that my friend Joey has left and finally settling in, I’ll be posting about my trip to London, as well as the long, yet exciting journey to Leeds. The adventure only begins there as I spent most of my nights in Leeds going out with friends and meeting up with some british people; the best brits I know this far.

I think I’m going to like it here.

Cheers for now!

Categories: Blog, England, Leeds, London, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

All Aboard! Next Stop. London, England.

If I could offer any sort of advice when it comes to moving away for a year, or just traveling in general… It would be to NOT PACK THE DAY BEFORE. Kinda obvious. However, not so obvious for this guy. I’m a last-minute kind of guy.

I had everything EVERYWHERE; All in neat, organized piles… just not packed into my luggage’s. Another piece fo advice when packing would be to buy SPACE BAGS. Basically they are these vacuum sealed bags (kinda like big Ziploc bags) that literally suck out all the air and unused and unnecessary space in your luggage’s. My friend Savannah mentioned to me over a Skype call and I thank her for doing so. They are a HUGE space saver, and in my case, life savour, as they made a lot more room available for more stuff to cram.

Overall, packing was fun. The stress of worrying about million other things, not so much. Along with packing, I had to make sure I had all the proper documentation ready for the UK agency border when I would finally land in the UK, as well as all my clothes, toiletries, electronics, electronic cords, power converters, and the list goes on and on.

My mother and her fiance drove me and my best friend Joey (who is accompanying me as well as traveling with me for the next week or so) to the Ottawa Airport. We went out for a very dinner, and came to realize that it would be my very last meal in Canada for a long time.

On the way to the airport, I met up with my dad who drove me the rest of the way in his mustang, for one last time… until next summer, of course. When we got to the airport, emotions and tears were in the air…port. As I had to say goodbye to my parents for one last time, things started to get emotional. We took some pictures before I left to catch my flight and said our farewells. Since I won’t be coming home for Christmas, this would be the last time they will see me until I flew back home next June.

Goodbyes, hugs, and kisses were given right before I entered the security gates leaving my parents behind. I know they’re happy & excited for me, but seeing there only child move away to another country for 9 months would be tough. I’m not an hour drive away anymore (how far my uni was from home), I’m literally a 7 hour flight away.

All in all, it was tough, but had to be done. It doesn’t even feel like I’m going to be gone for 9 months; it just feels like a trip. Get on an airplane and travel the UK for a bit, and come home…but things won’t be like that. I’ll be living in a whole different country for a long time, by my self, with nothing but Skype and Facebook to keep in contact with family & friends back home. I’m super excited, but I know it’ll be tough.

This journey will allow me to grow as an independent individual, and encounter a whole new experience that I would have never had if I didn’t apply for this school exchange.

As of now, I am currently waiting my airplane to start boarding passengers, and I can’t wait to begin a whole new life, in a whole new country.

Categories: Blog, Canada, England, Leeds, London, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

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