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advice

Travel Advice

How To Stay Clean At Glastonbury – with Pits and Bits Wash Kit 

June 16, 2016

I love Glastonbury Festival and I can’t wait to go again next week. My least favourite part is trying to stay clean in a muddy field for 5 days. Gross. Apparently there are showers but I’ve never met anyone who’s showered at Glastonbury! This is where the Pits and Bits Wash Kit comes in handy.

At previous festivals, I’ve used hundreds of baby wipes and hand sanitiser to try and freshen up and last year I washed my hair in a bucket – not easy when you have hair that’s as long and thick as mine! These methods are okay but I still feel really grubby after a couple of days. My main problem is not being able to wash my hair properly as I usually wash my hair every other day and it really suffers if I leave it any longer than that. I’m really jealous of you people who can go for days without washing their hair!

The beauty of the Pits and Bits Wash Kit is that you can wash your body and your hair WITHOUT water. That’s right, shampoo and shower gel that doesn’t need water! It sounds like madness but I’m so excited to give it a try. The theory is that the lotions foam up enough on their own and then you just towel dry your hair/body! My mum used the shower gel when she climbed Mount Kilimanjaro last year (just casually dropping that in there…) and raved about it afterwards so I’m hoping the shampoo is just as good.

The other part of the wash kit is these expandable wipes. Did you ever have those flannels that expanded in water when you were a kid? Well they’re just like that! Ideal if you don’t have much space or don’t want to carry any extra weight. I’ve heard that they don’t actually expand to a very big size so I might take an actual towel for back up but I’ll let you all know how I get on.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to a clean Glastonbury festival and praying for sunshine. Look out for me on TV, I’ll be the one singing along to Adele with squeaky clean hair!

Travel, Travel Advice

Should you go travelling with your boyfriend or girlfriend?

April 17, 2015

When I get asked who I went travelling with, a lot of people are surprised when I say I went with my boyfriend. They’re even more surprised when I say that we are still together. I’m not going to lie, travelling with your partner will put a lot of strain on your relationship but Stu and I are proof that you can go travelling together, have lots of fun and come home still together!

There are benefits of travelling in a couple, just like there are benefits of travelling alone or with friends. There is no right or wrong way to travel, you just have to learn what is right for you and that might change along your journey.

In true backpacker style, one of the most important benefits in going with your partner is it can be cheaper! Now before you get too excited, I’m not talking about some crazy 2 for 1 deal. It’s more like the cost of 1 and a half people than paying for 2 individuals. This is down to few things. You buy your food shops together so can take advantage of more offers and use the whole of that bag pasta you would otherwise have to buy on your own and leave half in the hostel kitchen. (I do miss the free shelf!) You can also occasionally save on accommodation. Double rooms tend to be more expensive but you can sometimes get away with just buying one single bed.  The downside of this is obviously having to share the single bed so try and do this on nights where it’s going to be late one so minimum time is spent in bed!

This next reason can be seen as both a pro and a con. You have someone with you all the time. Living out of each other’s pockets is not easy. We all need some time on our own and the sooner you realise when someone needs some space, the better. Don’t get offended if your partner wants to do something on their own, you don’t have to be two peas in a pod for the whole of your trip. The good side of having someone with you constantly is that you always have someone to talk to. They’re the perfect link to home when the time difference means you can’t talk to someone you’re missing. I found this invaluable on days where I was feeling a bit home sick. If you’re not someone who shares everything with new friends then it’s perfect having someone with you that you can trust with anything. Stu also looked after me during my clumsy moments when I almost left belongings behind in the most random places.

What you have to realise about travelling as a couple is that it is going to be very different to travelling with friends or on your own. It can be harder to make friends because people don’t tend to approach couples for a chat. They assume that you want to be left alone. The best thing about travelling is the people that you meet so you really don’t want to miss out on this. Just approach people yourselves, once you’re in a group people won’t care that you’re together and see you as individuals. Nights out as a couple are obviously different to a night with the boys, so make sure you are not one of those couples that argue after a couple of drinks and leave before everyone else. No one likes those guys.

My Dad gave Stu and I some sensible advice before we left. He said that no matter how much we argued, we were not to storm off on our own. We’ve all read the stories of backpackers who have walked home alone and terrible things can happen. Just be sensible even if you do hate their guts at that very moment.

It doesn’t matter who you travel with, you’re probably going to argue with them at some point. If this becomes a constant issue, its fine to go your separate ways. Plenty of friends start their journey together but then discover they don’t work well when travelling. You might get along fine and just want to travel to different places next. This is okay! Just make sure you are enjoying yourself and making the most of every opportunity.

I loved travelling with Stu and wouldn’t change a single moment. To me, there was no one better to experience travelling the world with. We made brilliant friends, some couples and plenty of solo travellers. Travel teaches you not to judge anyone so don’t be afraid of befriending people that you wouldn’t hang out with at home.

Asia, Indonesia, Travel

Bali – The Australian Magaluf?

January 3, 2015

To those living in Australia it won’t come as a surprise to see the Indonesian island of Bali described as a cheap party destination but to many people in the Northern Hemisphere, Bali is seen as a luxury honeymoon spot for newlyweds to enjoy their start to married life. If you are considering Bali as your next holiday and want to avoid drunk Australians then you need to pick carefully when deciding where to stay on the island.

The main area which has been developed to suit the Western clientèle is Kuta. Think Mcdonalds and other fast food outlets on every corner, chain stores such as Topshop, New Look and even Mark and Spencers and bars and restaurants serving every cuisine imaginable. Not exactly what you picture when you think of this island. If you don’t want to experience any Balinese culture and just want cheap food and alcohol then Kuta is perfect for you. This is where the Australian TV programme What really happens in Bali is based. The programme is fairly similar to the UK’s Magaluf Weekender and depicts young Aussies in a bad light. Kuta offers no culture apart from Bali souvenirs sold on the hundreds of market stalls. The place is crawling with teenagers on their first mates holiday and adults on family holidays still getting just as drunk.

A short taxi ride away from Kuta you have the slightly more upmarket resort of Seminyak. Seminyak is home to lots of little boutique shops. Some of these are owned by Indonesian designers so you feel a little better browsing these stores rather than the same shops you go in every weekend at home. The beaches are also much quieter than Kuta beach. You still get locals trying to sell you jewellery, fruit etc but as this happens all over Asia I think it is to be expected. In general, Seminyak is more expensive than Kuta for food and accommodation. The hotels which line the beach are incredible 5 star resorts so the whole area is suited for a certain class of person.

Have I put you off Bali yet? Have no fear, away from the rowdy party spots there are still places to visit in Bali which stay true to their culture.

The most popular of these is Ubud. This inland town is home to the famous monkey sanctuary and plenty of inspiring temples. The hotels seem to be more in keeping with Indonesian style and this gives you a better experience overall. You can definitely relax more in Ubud and take in the beautiful culture of the island. Take a visit to a temple or just watch the locals go about their daily lives. If you’re still desperate for a beach escape then try the nearby island Gili Trawangan. I loved it there and I’ll write a full blog post on this tiny paradise soon. This is what Bali is really about, not a cheap Bintang vest and an Arak cocktail.

What do you think? Have I judged Kuta unfairly or can you recommend anywhere else to visit in Bali?