Sunday, October 22, 2017

We are in México!

 

We made it to México!

Hello everyone, long time no post. Today just a quick one, as we spent our first trip day on a plane, so not many stories to tell.
   We flew from Barcelona to Miami and from there to Cancun. And just right after the security check in Miami airport, DA DA ...my suitcase just broke, its handle couldn't handle (ha ha) anymore trips.

So I entered the Miami airport as a star with my handicap suitcase: what a start. I must say this chubby little suitcase had been my travel pal for at least eight years, so it really had done its job very well. If only it had decided to breack in another not-so-bad-moment than in between planes... But anyway, thanks little suitcase for carrying all my stuff safely from London to Barcelona and from Barcelona to London many, many times and then to Barcelona to Croatia, and South Africa, and Japan, and Thailand and to so many other places, it has been really fun and I really appreciate it.

With no more relevant incidents to tell, we finally made it to Cancun by around 9 p.m. in the evening, we changed some money at the airport (not much as the exchange at the airport is quite abusive) and we went straight to the ADO coach station to Cancun. We knew we will be arriving late and tired, so we had booked a hotel close to the coach station in Cancun, so we could go straight to bed and wake up early in the morning to catch another coach to Chiquila and finally ferry to the lovely and fabulous Holbox island, where the real holidays were starting.

sunset and sky from a plane

Useful info


 Ok, and I know you were thrilled with my exciting broken suitcase story, but let's go to some more useful information in case you are in the planning phase of your trip to México, and, if so, let me tell you I really envy you.

ESTA visa

   Remember that if you fly to Mexico trough the EEUU you will probably need an ESTA authorization, with you should apply for and PAY in advance ( oh yes, around 20 euros just to step at the airport for a couple of hours!)

Money exchange 

   Avoid changing money in Cancun Airport as the change there is really bad. I think it was at 16.6 (eur to pesos) and in Cancun center we find it at 20.20! 


Traveling by coach

   We travel around México by coach, most of the time with ADO company. You can check all the timetables and prices on its website, which may help you to plan your itinerary. There are more companies  and to some little towns you may need to travel to 2nd class buses which you probably won't be able to find information on the web. We were deciding where to go on a short basis and we didn't have any trouble by traveling by coach. In fact, it was quite comfortable and easy to improvise. Think that Mexico receives around 30 million tourists a year and they are very prepared.  

Breakfast

My friend Eugénie checked on the internet for a nice place to have breakfast near the Ado coach station and so we find 100% Natural restaurant which we loved. They have many restaurants around México and we visited at least four different ones, as they were the perfect choice for a healthy and delicious meal.

Yogurt and fruit breakfast




Thursday, August 31, 2017

Mexico, Guatemala and Belize itinerary.

Three weeks in Mexico, Guatemala and Belize.


Mexico, Guatemala, Belize photo collage

The route

México, Guatemala and Belice itinerary

Day 2,3,4: Holbox.
Day 5: Valladolid.
Day 6: Valladolid: Río lagartos.
Day 7: Valladolid: Las Coloradas.
Day 8: Chichen Itza-Mérida.
Day 9: Mérida:Uxmal. Night bus to San Cristobal de las Casas.
Day 10: San Cristobal de las Casas.
Day 11: San Cristobal de las Casas: San Juan Chamula, Zinacantán.
Day 12: Viaje a Panajachel (Guatemala).
Day 13: Lago Atitlán: San Agustín y San Pedro.
Day 14: Antigua
Day 15: Antigua-Night bus to Flores.
Day 16: Flores.
Day 17: Tikal.
Day 18: Belize: Cayo Caulker.
Day 19: Belize-Playa del Carmen.
Day 20: Playa del Carmen.
Day 21: Playa del Carmen: Tulum, cenote azul.
Day 22: Cozumel.
Day 23. Cozumel.
Day 24: Isla Mujeres.
Day 25: Flight back.

   This is our travel itinerary for the Yucatan peninsula. Warning: this is not a route for lazy people, even though I am myself quite a lazy person and I have nothing against relaxing on the beach holding, actually eating, an ice cream.

 The truth is that this is probably my less pre-planned trip ever. I do love planning trips, it is my favourite hobby, I enjoy doing all the research, looking for the best places to stay, visit, etc. I love it and it also saves you a lot of time and hassle when traveling, leaving you more time to just enjoy the place. But this time it was very hard for us to decide where we wanted to go. We bought tickets to México with the idea to just visit this country, but then a friend told us that WE HAD to go to Guatemala, and so we did some research and then we couldn't just not go there.

   So our list of places increased so much that we were stressed just to watch it,  and so we decided to break our list and just book a couple of nights in México. We decided to choose in situ where we would go next and see if we had enough time to visit both countries. It was the right decision as we ended up visiting an extra one: Belize!

Tip!


   This is a circular itinerary, so if you are planning to do the same,  I would check first where is cheaper to fly to and then start from there. From Barcelona and Spain it is cheaper to fly to Guatemala City and even Belize than Cancun, so I would fly there instead. That could probably save you a couple of hundred euros!

   Another little thing I would do different is to swap one Playa del Carmen day for Belize, spending two nights in Caye Caulker instead of one. Apart from that little detail, I am very content with our travel itinerary, and super happy with all the places we were able to visit. I can't wait to share it with you!


Monday, July 3, 2017

Thailand 2: VIII Bangkok and Chatuchak market.

Last days in Bangkok

We spent our last two days in Bangkok. Lucky us, it was on the weekend and so we had the opportunity to go to Chatuchak market. I am not much into shopping, however, in Chatuchak market it is almost impossible not buying. It is huge, enormous, you can buy anything you can imagine and just at the right price. I strongly recommend you to leave this market for the end of your trip to buy presents and souvenirs, so you won't have to carry all the stuff the rest of your holidays. But be aware that it is only open on weekends.
Apart from Chatuchack market, we didn't do much. We had already been in Bangkok so we just enjoyed the swimming pool and gym in our place and went out with our friends around the area which was really cool and trendy, with very nice bars and places to eat. We couldn't have asked for more.
I didn't even take pictures, but if you want more info about Bangkok and Chatuchack market, you can have a look at my first trip to Thailand posts.

Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok, Thailand

This is our shopping in Chatuchack market:

Our shopping in Chatuchak market

And this is how our amazing trip to Thailand arrived to the end. How sad, I think I just can't get enough of Thailand. The jungle, the amazing beaches, the food, the tuk tuks, the longtail boats, ...they make life a little more adventurous and fun than our regular bus and tube trips a in Barcelona (or London). I don't know why, but I have the feeling that my love story with Thailand hasn't finished yet...I don't know when or how but I really hope that I will come back. Feeling also very grateful for being able to spend these holidays with D and C and A and K, it was so cool!!! Bye bye Thailand, and see you soon!!!!!




 


 

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Thailand 2: VII Ko Lipe, a little paradise.

Ko Lipe, a little paradise

When you love travelling, you normally don't want to repeat destinations because the world is so big and there are so many places to go...Well, when it comes to Thailand, you can definitely skip that rule, and Ko Lipe is one of the reasons why.
This little island is beautiful and quiet, and I loved the fact that you can explore it just by foot, as it is little enough for not needing any kind of transportation.
Getting there is the most tricky part. It took us one day from Ko Lanta. During the high season there is a ferry that goes straight from Ko lanta to Ko Lipe, but because it was the rainy season, we had to get to Pak Bara pier first and took the ferry from there. We just booked our transfer from a local travel agency in Ko Lanta. That was the easy part...The ferry, well it was actually a speed boat, olalà...That was the real adventure. First 5 minutes were fun, everyone was screaming and laughing because of the big waves, then...you realize that you have ahead of you 1:25h more of a journey... Sometimes,  after a big wave, the engine stoped making noise because it wasn't in contact with the water, well, I guess I could say it was a quite a silent trip, because that happened many many times! And people in the back seats were so wet because of the waves.... It was a crazy experience, and once on the island, the speed boat trip was the first theme of conversation between all the travelers you met. But after arriving to  Ko Lipe you realize that the bumpy ride was absolutely worth it. And on the way back it wasn't as rough, so it wasn't that bad.

Ko Lipe beach, Thailand


Ko Lipe beach, Thailand

Ko Lipe beach, Thailand

Ko Lipe beach, Thailand

A unicorn floating in Ko Lipe, Thailand

Longtail boats in Ko Lipe, Thailand

Ko Lipe beach, Thailand

Ko Lipe beach, ThailandKo Lipe beach, Thailand


Ko Lipe beach, Thailand

Ko Lipe beach, Thailand


Ko Lipe beach, Thailand


A jellyfish in Ko Lipe, Thailand

Sunset in Ko Lipe, Thailand
Ko Lipe beach, Thailand


Ko Lipe Road, Thailand
Ko Lipe, Thailand

Ko Lipe's video

Here are the Ko lipe's clips I found on my phone, in case they can help you to decide wether you want to include Ko Lipe in your trip to Thailand or not...If you have time, I would strongly recommend you to go.



Ko Lipe's Hotel

We stayed in Cabana Lipe Beach Resort and we loved it. The rooms were beautiful and we could hear the sea sound from the room. The Hotel doesn't have a restaurant, so they delivered every morning a fabulous breackfast in our balcony. You could decided every evening what time slot you wanted to get it delivered and if you wanted a continental,  a healthy or thai breaky. It was great.

 
 





And that's all for Ko Lipe, next post will be a short one about Chatuchack market in Bangkok, stay tunned!

xxx



Sunday, May 14, 2017

Thailand 2: VI. Ko Lanta

After Railay bay and Ko Phi Phi, we wanted a place to just chill and relax and do what you are supposed to do on holidays: nothing. All we did during one week was going from the hotel to the beach, eating, going to the swimming pool, beach again and from the beach back to the hotel. We chose Ko Lanta because it was affordable and quiet and it was just what we needed. But I may say that in august (rainy season) it is not the best time to go. We stayed on Klong dao beach, on the north, near to Saladan, and the beach was beautiful and long, a great size for daily curative long walks, but not as great for swimming, it was too wavy. But the swimming pool at the hotel, facing the beach, was just perfect.

Ko Lanta, Thailand

Many of the restaurants were closed and all the hotels were very empty. Still, there were enough places to eat and open shops, and in the main road of saladan there was a big Seven Eleven pretty busy, especially with local customers, which was a surprise. 

Saladan main road, Ko Lanta


Saladan main road, Ko Lanta


I was staying at The Noble House beach resort,and it was a great choice as the swimming pool was just perfect, and most of the time I had it just for myself, which was amazing. I also liked the fact that to get to Saladan main Road  I had to walk through the beach first, barefoot as it was easier to walk this way, and then put your shoes again an turn left to a little alley. It made it more adventurous this way, specially at night when you needed a torch (or a phone with a torch app), otherwise you wouldn't know where you are steping at. Those little different details, when you stay enough time to a place to actually have your own little rutines, is what I love the most of travelling.

The Noble House beach resort swimming pool

Klong Dao beach, Ko Lanta

Klong Dao beach, Ko Lanta


Sunset on Klong Dao beach, Ko Lanta

Swimming pool at The Noble House beach resort, Ko Lanta

Swimming pool at The Noble House beach resort, Ko Lanta

Swimming pool at The Noble House beach resort, Ko Lanta

Swimming pool at The Noble House beach resort, Ko Lanta

Klong Dao Beach, Ko Lanta

Klong Dao Beach, Ko Lanta

Klong Dao Beach, Ko Lanta

Klong Dao Beach, Ko Lanta

Klong Dao Beach, Ko Lanta

And I think that's all for Ko Lanta. Here are some of my  phone clips put together of Ko Lanta, and also a clip from the Hotel ( The Noble House beach resort) in case you are considering going there. I stayed there on my own and I felt perfectly safe, the price was great, the room was very basic, but good size and perfect for the price, and the swimming pool was just a bless. 

Ko Lanta's clip











The Noble House beach resort


And that's all for today. Next stop: Ko Lipe. 




Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Brunch in Trópico, Barcelona (plus drinks in Hotel Barceló Raval)


Before I keep up with my Thailand trip posts, let me recommend you another great place to have brunch in Barcelona, this time in Raval's area. My friend Eugénie, who has a PhD in Barcelona's trendiest places, took us to Trópico, a  place with an amazing decoration and healthy and tasty food, and specialized in tropic dishes. Yummy!

Eggs benedict and smoothy in Trópico BCN

Ceviche dish in Trópico Barcelona

Trópico bcn is really close to Raval's Rambla, so, after's saying hi to Botero's cat statue, we headed to the amazing Barceló Raval Hotel to have some drinks in the rooftop bar, which is open to the public.
If you love interior design, a visit to this hotel is mandatory. Have a look of the pictures below...

Horse's lamp in Barceló Raval HotelBarceló Raval Hotel Hall's interior design

Isn't it just perfect? I love it (and so it wasn't my first time there, and it won't be the last one...)

Ants in Barceló Raval rooftop bar

And of course, the views...


Barcelona views from Barceló Raval Hotel rooftop

Barcelona views from Barceló Raval Hotel rooftop

So here are the addresses of both places just in case you need them ;)

Trópico BCN
C/Marquès de Barberà 24,
08001 Barcelona


Hotel Barceló Raval
Rambla del Raval 17-21,
08001 Barcelona

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