Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

If there’s one thing I love to do when travelling, it’s head to a local market. It’s just not something that I frequent when at home. Sure we have a local farmers market on a Saturday morning, but it’s just not the same as wandering around a beautiful old town and seeing what wonderful things are on offer.

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia is a great example of this. On Sunday mornings from about 9am, local farmers and producers set up shop inside the beautiful old walls of Alcudia old town. Anything from local fruit and veg (not to mention the chilli’s available!) to leather goods and trinkets are on offer.

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Wander around, explore and try something new. We came away with the biggest bag of dried mango for about 3 Euros, which no doubt would have cost us a lot more at home.

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Once you’ve had your fill of the market, take a stroll around the rest of the old town. Pop into the little local shops and when you’re ready, stop for a coffee. I sometimes find it tricky to judge mealtimes in Europe. By mid -morning we were ready for a little break in the shade and an ice coffee to revive us, but all around there are people having a bite to eat, most with beer or wine, and others having full blown meals. That’s one of the great things about little independent restaurants abroad, they cater for everyone, no matter what you’re after at all times of day and night.

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

Alcudia - Majorca - Girlglobalising

After a morning of exploring and snapping photos in the Spanish sun we were ready to head to the beach for a dip in the sea, but there’s more to explore in the Port de Alcudia, if you wanted to make a day of it. As I mentioned before this trip was quite a change of pace for myself and Dom, but we definitely got used to being about to read on the beach and have a leisurely swim in the sea mid-afternoon!

More Majorcan adventures coming soon.

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

Majorca - Girlglobalising

All photos taken on iPhone

I’m fresh from a week on the sunny island of Majorca. It was a long, long awaited week in the sunshine. A few weeks earlier while I was busy counting down the days until the weekend I realised the last time I had a week off was Christmas. So I was very much looking forward to putting the out-of-office on and signing off for a whole seven days straight.

After a rather bumpy start to the week, including delayed flights, a 40-man stag do joining us on Ryanair, more delays and then our hire car that had gone walk about (thanks for that rentalcar.com…) we finally got to the hotel in Port de Pollenca at roughly 2.30am. The next morning we stumbled down to breakfast and floundered over what to do with all our time.

That was the beauty of Majorca. It’s not the type of destination that I normally head for – it’s normally more of a rush around a busy city in a flat-out three days. So to head to a place where one of the biggest attractions is lying on the beach was a massive change of pace for us. But Majorca is more than just a beach destination, although we also took advantage of those, but there’s gorgeous little villages and mountain towns, plus being surround by beautiful clear water provides a whole lot of opportunities.

More late summer sunshine coming soon…

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

Nestled down in a little corner of Cornwall is the small village of St Mawes. Dom and I stopped by on the way back from a speedy weekend trip, for one last afternoon of sea air, boat watching and ice creams. On a sunny day the beaches in Cornwall would easily be mistaken for the Riviera, if not for the unmistakably English seaside-ness.

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

Hop over on the King Harry car ferry and travel down the coast past the rolling hills.

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

Wander along to the castle, slowing climbing up hill to take in the beauty of the harbour. From the castle you can look across to Falmouth, and if you have a little extra time, you can hop on a ferry across to the town and do a bit more exploring.

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

Head back into the town and pick up a picnic lunch from the little deli and enjoy it on the rocks at low tide. It’s much more enjoyable watching the boats coming and going than sitting outside the shop and dodging the hungry seagulls.

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

Walk along the harbour wall for a different perspective. Don’t forget to take lots of photos from the lookout point!

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

It would be a crime not to grab an ice cream on a sunny day. Roskilly’s, of course. When in Cornwall…!

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

St Mawes, Cornwall - Girlglobalising

Like a lot of places in Cornwall, St Mawes is lovely, but you’ll cover all of it within a few hours. If you don’t fancy doing a bit more exploring then make sure you take a book with you. If you’re up for something a bit more adventurous there are plenty of boating and sailing activities on offer.

Gingham dress - Girlglobalising

Photos by Dom John

The gingham trend has been raging on for a while – it’s now basically inescapable for summer. I was pretty set on this being another trend that I give a miss (in the same way I’ve avoided ruffles and big floaty sleeves like the plague). I’ve been making an effort to change my style to something a bit more grown up in the last few months, although my boss would probably disagree since I still turn up to work in jeans and a t-shirt everyday, and gingham didn’t seem to fit into that.

Then I spotted this dress in UO that couldn’t be more gingham if it tried. The ruched top half only seems to make it look more gingham! But with a weekend in Barcelona, hopefully a few days in Cornwall and a whole blissful week in Majorca coming up, it seemed like the perfect holiday dress. I wore it a lot in said weekend in Barcelona (check out the post here), the elasticated top half is perfect for not bothering with a bra (keeps everything where it should be!), the midi length makes it perfect for cities and the light floaty material makes it great for beaches and heat too.

I’m officially a gingham convert. I’m also clutching a Lime flavoured Calippo in these photos, and I’m starting a petition to bring them to the UK. SO GOOD! Let me know if you’re with me…

xx

Dress – Urban Outfitters | Sunglasses – Rayban | Sandals – Forever 21

Gingham - Girlglobalising

Bag – Mango (old) | Sandals – Forever 21

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Considering how much I love Barcelona, I’ve never actually made a city guide for the wonderful place. Back in 2014 I spent a few weeks there on a work placement and during that time I really got to grips with the city. There’s so much to fill your time with and coupled with an amazing laid back atmosphere it really is the perfect city break destination.

And I do 100% see Barcelona as a city destination rather than a beach destination. Yes, it’s right on the beach and that only adds more value to the place, but it’s definitely not somewhere I would go for a beach holiday.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Where to stay: 

I’ve stayed in a few places in Barcelona, first the H10 hotel just off Plaça Catalunya, which is a very nice hotel, but worth noting that while it has a very lovely roof terrace it doesn’t have a swimming pool.

On this most recent trip we stayed in the Sunotel in L’Eixample which was also a very good option. It has a nice little pool on the roof and is perfectly positioned for exploring the city.

I have also stayed in an apartment in the Gracia neighbourhood, which is well known for being one of the nicest neighbourhoods in Barcelona. Have a look on Airbnb and I’m sure you’ll find a gem. Maybe even try and time it with the Festa de Gracia in August and it’ll really add to your Catalonian experience.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

What to do:

There’s so much to do in Barcelona! We were only there for two days, so minus time for sleeping it was about 24 hours of exploring the city. I would recommend wandering around the Gothic Quarter and El Born areas. These are essentially the old town and are full of winding narrow streets with cobble stones and beautiful buildings to admire. You’ll also find the cathedral here and the Picasso museum which is a really great little museum and a haven from the heat. From here you could head over the La Boqueria, the infamous market on Las Ramblas. Yes it’s very touristy, but it’s also still frequented by locals and well worth a quick visit.

Barcelona is famous for it’s Guadi architecture and by all means visit one of the Guadi houses, they’re very interesting but my favourite bit of Guadi’s handiwork is Park Guell. In the north of the city looking out over the rooftops you’ll find the park of all parks. The curving tiled seat, the pillars and domed roof, the mosaic lizard are all features as well as the amazing view all the way down to the sea. It does cost to get in now, but I think it’s only about 6 euros, or you can go early in the morning (before 8am) for free and you also won’t have to battle all the other tourists.

The olympic swimming pool on Montjuic is my favourite pool ever. It’s about 6 euros to get in but that ticket will last you all day if you fancy it. It’s not chlorinated water and it’s frequented mainly by locals so not completely packed out, even on a Saturday afternoon. It looks a little run down, but don’t let that put you off. The water is clean and fresh, plus you get one of the best views across the city from there.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Where to eat and shop: 

In Barcelona I find it quite hard to find anything other than tapas on the menu. The advice I will give you is to head out of the city center, and definitely away from Las Ramblas, to find a smaller family run restaurant where you’re guaranteed to find a more authentic meal. A lovely place to visit is El Nacional, which is quite central and it’s description of a ‘food court’ doesn’t do it any favours, but trust me it’s well worth a visit. Previously it was a car park, but it’s been transformed into the most amazing building. You will have to queue but you can get a drink from the bar while you do so. For something a little different I have heard that Mosquito is good for Asian inspired tapas.

For brunch and lunch there are a few good recommendations in Brunch and Cake and Flax & Kale. For great coffee head to Satan’s Coffee Corner and Nomad Coffee Lab. And basically anywhere in El Ravel, which is the student area and basically over run with hipsters now.

I have heard really great things about the El Poble-Sec and Sant Antoni neighbourhoods. They are emerging as more affordable places for professionals, so currently they are a great mix of coffee shops, boutiques as well as family run places and old Barcelonians.

Barcelona - Girlglobalising

Barcelona - Girlglobalising