destination europe

#ElaishaGoes to Scotland: Photo Album and City Guide

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Scotland was incredible. I didn't visit any of the bigger and well-known cities like Edinburgh or Glasglow. We road tripped through Scotland from Aberdeen to Inverness then made a loop to Dundee before heading south to London. I spent most of the trip there gawking out of the car window. I couldn't believe that a place so beautiful wasn't listed on destination recommendations everywhere.I have so many pictures and experiences I want to share, but I won't bombard you. Keep reading for my must-see places in the land of rolling hills and sheep.

How to Get Around 

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My flight from London wasn't bad at all! British Airways spoiled me, and I was in economy. A hot breakfast of a cheese omelette with toast and a cup of tea (orange juice for me) were all served so nicely. I was thoroughly impressed. And our flight left on time!

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Buses aren't always reliable (or even available) in the smaller towns. If you can rent a car, do it. Driving through Scotland was like driving through a story book. I saw double rainbows, yummy restaurants and the cutest sheep. Cabs are not cheap in Dundee, so watch out for that. Oh, and there's no Uber in certain spots so watch out for that too.

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Fish and chips and mozzarella sticks. Life was great in Scotland. 

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Where to Go Inverness was my favourite stop on this road trip. The picturesque town wasn't too touristy when I went. First line of business after a quick nip into Tesco was visiting the castle, which also happened to double as a beautiful lookout point!

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Wearing: Old Navy Leggings, Uniqlo Vest, Uniqlo Shirt, Reebok Woven Furylite Shoes, Champs Men's Shirt

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Another gem you need to pop into is Leakey's Bookshop...it was possibly the cutest place I had ever been to. I was in book heaven. It was dead quiet when I explored the library and I loved it. I wish I bought one of the vintage maps or paintings there (they were over 100 years old!).

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We took a quick stroll about the small 'downtown' area. There were several restaurants and more historic buildings to 'ooo' and 'ahh' over.

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Where to stay

Tigh Na Coin Beagan was the most memorable spot I rested my head in in Scotland. The owner was super pleasant and his Scottish Terriers were just as friendly.

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The house was located across from a gorgeous loch and decorated in tartan (carpets, pillows etc.). The view outside of my room was stunning. My window looked over the loch Mhor and the rolling hill behind it.

Where to Hike

Ben Nevis and Falls of Foyers were the two places I went hiking in Scotland. It was recommended to us by the owner of Tigh Na Coin Beagan.

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Wearing: Columbia Outdry™ EX Gold Trench Jacket, Columbia Leggings, Reebok Woven Furylite Shoes

Falls of Foyers was an easy hike because I took the 'easy' way. Otherwise, it would have been a 2-hour journey to the bottom. I prioritized being able to see Ben Nevis that day instead.

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Wearing: Columbia Leggings, Reebok Woven Furylite Shoes, Columbia Hoodie Shirt, Uniqlo Vest

In Ben Nevis, we hiked for almost half an hour which lead to an incredible clearing that faced the falls. I was in absolute awe of its beauty!

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Be very careful and wear shoes with intense grip. The trek up was very slippery and wet which I didn't mind. Sadly my hiking shoes didn't arrive in time, but these kicks still came through.

Dundee

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Wearing: Stella Nova Jacket, Old Navy Leggings, Kooba Bag, Reebok Woven Furylite Shoes

Dundee was pretty cool. We swung by the Overgate Centre (which you've got to visit, it's huge) and the high street. I went a bit overboard in M&S, but #YOLO. There was this awesome lookout point too that gave us a view of the city.

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St Andrews I was nearly hit by a few golf balls, but other than that hazard St Andrews was incredible. It was cute hanging at the place Kate and William fell in love. We grabbed fish and chips and ate by the beach. While my chips were nearly stolen by greedy seagulls, I really enjoyed it there. With old boy's club establishments and grey stone buildings, I felt like I was in Johnny English or a James Bond movie.  It seemed like a super luxe spot (for a University town). I'd definitely visit again with more time to explore.

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Wearing: Zara Jacket, Thrifted Scarf Old Navy Leggings, Kooba Bag, Reebok Woven Furylite Shoes

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I can't wait to return to Scotland and tour the northern coast and also hit the bigger cities. Is there anywhere I visited that stood out to you? Comment down below with whether you'd like to visit!

#ElaishaGoes to Barcelona: Photo Story & City Guide

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Barcelona was a dream. I honestly feel like I woke up and couldn't possibly have been there. Travelling to Europe to visit some of my greatest friends (and making new ones) was a treat. I'm not picking favourites here, but Barcelona was a city I had the chance to really immerse myself in and explore. Thankfully my girl Katie rounded up her favourite places in Barca and my good friend Graeme and I were able to visit a lot of them. Keep reading for what to do in Barcelona Guide and Photo Story!

Where to BrunchPicnic is the spot. After strolling past the Arc and down a back alley I found the quaint (and popular) restaurant. I sat down and ordered a burrata and mimosa immediately. Both were sweet and amazing. I'm still dreaming about the tacos I got too. Graeme grabbed fluffy pancakes and a beer and we just ate the day away before exploring Barcelona.

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How to get around Cabs are pretty cheap, but as a city girl taking public transport was the way to go. I had a European data plan from three which worked all over the city (I didn't visit the outskirts, however). So this allowed me to just quickly use Google maps and plot out a trip using public transport. Grab a 3-day pass and wear comfortable shoes. Exploring a city by foot has always been my favourite way to learn the ins and outs of different neighbourhoods.

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Where to go dancing After a later dinner at midnight (yes, that's how late people eat out there) hit up the club district by the beach. At about 2am we noticed things were picking up and lines were immense at Opium especially.

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What to see There were so many historical places to visit so we decided to hit up as many as we could walk to within a day instead of tiring ourselves out too much.

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Where to Beach  We did not hit up the beach on the weekend but instead decided to settle on a weekday to beat the crowd. We went to what's considered to be the 'Gay Beach', which is an LGBTQ-friendly space with mostly men. What we didn't realize is that it was right next to the nude beach. I was unbothered and Graeme was entertained (but polite obviously). I felt comfortable and for the first time in days no men came up to me or cat-called at me. Then we hit up Xiringuito Escribà for a delicious meal by the beach.

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Where to go Shopping  There were so many spots dotted across the city. Of course, La Rambla (aka tourist trap) was the obvious option. However, we ducked down some little side streets and I was able to purchase some cute shirts. However, the salesgirl didn't let me haggle at all. I also hit up Glòries Centre Comercial. It had the stores I really wanted to see (Zara, H&M and Massimo Dutti) without the crowds of the most popular malls. It also had a Walmart-type store where I was able to buy gifts for some friends and pick up food for the weekend.

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Barcelona Choclate

Plan on visiting Barcelona? Leave me any questions you have in the comments below!