Youtube

HOSTEL ESSENTIALS. Ft. My College Friend Heidi

We were hanging out in our hostel in Dublin and decided we should make a video together about what out hostel essentials are. For those of you who prefer it in a handy list form :

  • FlipFlops
  • Travel Towel
  • Padlock /Lock for Backpack
  • Eyemask & Earplugs
  • Comfy Clothes
  • Cleansing wipes & AntiBacterial Gel
  • Entertainment (Book, E-Book, Netflix, music, cards +++)
  • Universal Travel Adapter
  • Sleep liner
  • Flashlight
  • Water bottle

Hope you found this useful! What is on our hostel essentials list?

 

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Books & Films, Travel

10 Films That Inspire Travel

It’s no secret that I’m big on films and watch more than the average number. As I grew up, so did my enthusiasm for travel grow and these films were part of what inspired me to want to visit new places and explore new cultures. You’ll notice that all of these flicks are from 2000 and onwards and that’s simply because, although I have watched quite a few older films in later years, these are the ones I fell in love with as a tween and teen. Here in no specific order are 10 films that inspire travel:

Ratatouille (2007, Walt Disney Pictures)
With gorgeous animation and French music all throughout this cute film about a rat who wants to be a chef is great fun for kids and parents alike. I put it on this list because 1,  Oh, J’taime Paris! And 2, I love it when children get play and learn to be adventurers through fiction, whether that be films or books or graphic novels.

Eat, Pray, Love (2010, Sony Pictures)
Set in Italy, India and Bali this journey explore all aspects of life. It’s spicy and a brilliant film for foodies looking for inspiration, while simultaneously showcasing some beautiful location and cultures. Admittedly a bit of a chick flick, but still inspirational!

Mamma Mia (2008, Universal Pictures)
Catchy ABBA music and a romantic Greek island –  what´s not to like? As a scandinavian I’m contractually obligated to love and know every ABBA song by heart, but this is just one of the many reasons I love Mamma Mia. I haven’t been to Greece yet, but the blue ocean, white and blue buildings and lovely cliffs would tempt anyone to go island jumping in the Greek isles!

Lord of The Rings Trilogy (2001, 2002, 2003, New Line Cinema)
Peter Jackson discovered and developed his love for long landscape shots and epic establishing shots in the LOTR trilogy. The three films were shot in New Zealand and as most of you know the local tourist economy is now thriving because of it. Previously undiscovered but these films made us want to see the breathtaking nature and magical sets for ourselves. The films are also about taking an epic journey and has a real traveller spirit feeling to them.

Blended (2014, Warner Bros. Pictures)
However unrealistic it may be that you get to go on a luxury holiday to Africa, and however (slightly) racist some of the stereotypes in this film are, it does have some lovely heartwarming moments and shows off some wonderful African nature and wildlife. Especially the scene where Drew Barrymores character hang glides behind a truck lets the audience see some amazing clips of the different, but stunning nature. It helps that this film is also genuinely funny!

Amélie (2001, UCG Fox)
This quirky French film is worth a watch if you don´t mind the subtitles. Set in Paris Amélie (played by Adrey Tautou) finds love by smiling to the world and wandering around this colorful city (it really is colourful – stunning visuals!) . The music is a little bit more like folk-music than in Ratatouille, but still the epitome of French.

Ps: I Love You (2007, Warner Bros. Pictures/Momentum Pictures)
The romantic film that makes every woman cry and every man roll his eyes. And also the film that showcases some beautiful  Irish music, nature and pub culture. I’ve visited Ireland before and though the film showcases a slightly understated version of Irish nature because of it’s everyday life focus, it is still impossibly green.

Up (2009, Walt Disney Pictures)
Ellie is a dreamer who wants to travel the world and her husband Carl flies away in a house strapped to balloons. Do I need to say more? Another film that makes kids want to travel, to go beyond their own comfort zones and encourages them to not stop dreaming even if their dreams seem far away. Heart warming ❤

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2012, Fox Searchlight Pictures)
If you love the great classical actors who always represent the epitome of British culture, fun Bollywood music and sometimes awkward dramady jokes then this cute film is worth a watch! A group of British retirees head to India for their retirements, only to discover that they didn’t know everything about life and love after all. Lovely mix-mash of Indian culture and British humour.

Up in the Air (2009, Paramount Pictures)
This film is probably the one I´ve watched most recently, found on Netflix one lazy Sunday morning. It takes a while to get into it and sometimes it is downright odd, but there are humorous parts that makes up for the slow start. This film is on the list because I adore flying and like Clooney’s character I have a thing for collection frequent flyer miles just to collect them, though I mostly collect SAS points (Northern Norway hometown perks). Let yourself be inspired by the jet setter life 🙂

Let me know if you have any films that have inspired you to travel in the comments below! Xxx

Europe, Ireland, Travel

An Epic Ireland Adventure – Dublin, Galway, Limerick & Cork

You wouldn’t think that Ireland and England are different, and in many ways they are not, but during my Epic Ireland Adventure with Christa I learned that Ireland is beautiful. Beautiful and awe-inspiring and a fascinating  mix of what I know as British culture and something very unique and altogether foreign. If you prefer watching over reading here is a videoblog from our trip, the written post is below 🙂

Dublin

Our adventure started in the capital of Ireland, Dublin. We flew directly from Newastle Airport and got to Dublin feeling a little dazed and confused, not really knowing what we were looking for or what we were hoping to see. Months before we had booked three nights in Barnacles Hostel (Highly recommend it, very social and very good standard), right smack in the middle of the Temple Bar area, arguably one of the most colourful neighborhoods in the city. Not that we were aware of this, because as it turns out, we knew nothin’, Jon Snow. We learned quickly however, and spent the first day exploring the medieval-like cobblestone streets of Temple Bar and soaking up the tempo and atmosphere of the city, including a evening visit to Hard Rock Café Dublin. While sightseeing the city we also popped by the magnificent St.Patricks Cathedral.

Dublin is a fascinating city in many ways. It was founded by vikings, under British rule for centuries, then became an independent republic, heavily influenced by Catholicism. Ireland itself used to be Gaelic, though much of the Gaelic culture slowly disappeared under British rule, but the remnants of it still exist. While walking around Dublin and all throughout our trip we were reminded of Irish history and it was an interesting one!

“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.” – Oscar Wilde

Dublin is, and was, also the home to some great literary names such as James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, Samuel Beckett and more and this is evident all over the city. With statues (like the one above of Oscar Wilde looking swag), memorial centers and literary walking tours Dublin is lovely for anyone interested in literature or wanting to see some fictional sights in real life.

A must-do in Dublin is visiting the Guinness Storehouse. Guinness is a dark malt beer that originates in Dublin and can be bought in shops all over the world. It’s not a stereotype that the Irish like their beer, but then again, so does any citizen of the British Isles (Yes, Ireland is not british anymore, but is located geographically among the British Isles).  We headed there on our second day in Dublin and it was almost a full day tour, tasting beer, smelling ingredients, pouring a pint – we did it all, and despite not being into beer we both enjoyed the experience. On our last day in Dublin we explored the less touristy side of the city and enjoyed some people watching


Galway

After Dublin we headed off by train to what turned out to be the best part of our entire trip – the coastal town of Galway. Galway is a small town of only 70 000 people (ish) living there, but because they suburban areas are spread out, it feel like a very small town. It’s also extremely cozy, with picturesque streets, pubs that offer live Irish music almost every night and a unique shoreline promenade that provide tourists and locals a like a breath of fresh air from bigger cities. Dublin felt much like a lot of other larger European cities, but in Galway we came face to face with what felt like authentic Ireland.

The highlight of the trip was a package day trip we went on from Galway. We left early in the morning on our second day in the little town and got on a bus along the coast. Our first stop was a short photo stop at Dungaire Castle, a costal fortress from the 1600s. Our second stop was a 6000 year old burial place, famous because there are so few left in Europe that are still standing and our third stop was the ruins of an old Gaelic homestead. From there on we went north along the coast,  ending up at the Cliffs of Moher.

(I can only apologize for he bad quality of the photos – due to our limited baggage allowance I only had my phone camera and my film camera with me.)

Not only was our guide on the day trip the most hilarious Irish man I have ever had the pleasure of listening to for 3 hours straight, but despite the foggy weather I slowly fell in love with Ireland. Slowly, and then all at once 😉 No, but seriously. The Cliffs of Moher are majestic on a whole new level of majestic and none of the people who where there could do anything but marvel at mother nature. The fact that the Cliffs of Moher and a cave below the cliffs were used as a location for Harry Potter & The Half Blood Prince was the cherry on top.

Limerick & Cork


IMG_3905We hadn’t planned our trip after any guidebooks, but rather by looking at a map and choosing places we had heard of at random. This turned out to be a little bit of a mistake on our part, but  the entire trip was a lesson in spontaneity so I guess we learnt something. Here is the thing: Limerick is is not worth a visit  – and you wouldn’t think someone wanderlusting all over the place would say it, but it’s true. It is the stab capital of Ireland, it’s sadly run down and destroyed by the economy and other than an Angela´s Ashes walking tour and a castle, well….. after lively Galway it didn’t catch our attention. Now, our impression of this small city was probably affected by the fact that we had been sleeping badly in hostels for a week, but we quickly skipped passed Limerick and went to to Cork.

Cork was the last place on our itinerary and though we still hadn’t recovered from our disappointment in Limerick we enjoyed Cork. After a quick explore of the Irish foodie capital we walked into Cork  Opera House where it turned out Grease the Musical was showing and on impulse we bought a ticket each and spent our last afternoon in Ireland watching a wonderful cast singing and dancing. Our moods skyrocketed and our Epic Ireland Adventure ended on a high note. Badum tssssh.

We had two amazing, fun-filled weeks adventuring around Ireland, but I honestly can´t wait to go back, because I think there are certain parts of Irish culture that stands out and deserves more time. Gaelic history, the North, the endless green of the Irish countryside. Nature is without a doubt  one of the strong points of Ireland and  why I encourage everyone to go. Book some cheap tickets from England and other European countries with RyanAir and off you are! Xxx