Visit Bulgaria!

Have you ever been to often-forgotten Bulgaria? If not, I highly recommend a trip.

It’s a beautiful country, with pretty much everything on offer you could ask for: long golden Black Sea beaches, interesting cobbled towns, peaceful monastery retreats, rugged mountains for climbing, Thracian and Classical ruins for exploring, great food, places to swim, welcoming people – and what’s more, it’s Europe’s cheapest destination…

I went for a month in August 2012, but below is our round itinerary for a 3-week trip. Why not consider it for your next travel to Europe? (more…)

My favourite lakes for swimming in Europe

One of the things I most look forward to when I’m planning a trip to Europe in the summer is the possibility of some outdoors swimming. I’m no pain-junkie, so for me most swimming spots in the UK are out because they’re far too chilly to actually be enjoyable! Swimming outsides is best when the sun is shining and you want some way to cool off in a hot day; clear water is also a big plus (and some pretty mountains around where you’re swimming never hurts either). Many European destinations have really amazing places for swimming, but below are some of my favourites from the (roughly) Central European area. (more…)

The Visa Again

After my experience with Iranian visas, I was slightly dreading putting in applications for Turkish visas, but alas, the task had fallen to me to get hold of six visas before we set off next month. Last time I went to Turkey (March 2012), you could just buy a visa on arrival in Istanbul airport for £10 – I thought the system was a bit strange because you HAD to pay in British sterling, which seemed a bit odd seeing as you were on Turkish soil. I don’t know what you would do if you had forgotten to bring British money with you to Turkey as there was no way of getting any British money when you got there – would you be sent back? Surely this would happen quite frequently, as it certainly wasn’t well advertised in advance that you would need this £10… (more…)