Recent blog posts
A Lille trip by Eurostar
6th July 2020 by ScribbleStu
Located in France’s northern Hauts-de-France region, close to the Belgian border, Lille is a surprisingly short journey from the UK. It’s a great destination for a quick and hassle-free mini-break, or as a way of getting those travel juices flowing again after lockdown. Getting there. There are indirect flights with various airlines but it’s much better news if you live close enough to a Eurostar station: at just an hour and 26 minutes from London, the journey to Lille is direct and...
48 hours in Kuala Lumpur
1st June 2020 by ScribbleStu
The name alone elicits a sense of exotic intrigue. And with a tagline of â€œSouth east Asia’s youngest capital cityâ€, Kuala Lumpur is quickly transforming from â€œflight stopoverâ€ to holiday hotspot in its own right. Situated in Malaysia’s south-west, the city is going through big changes in its landscape and its image. Visitors will witness countless mega-cranes and building projects, with soaring skyscrapers and monorails sitting alongside temples, colonial...
Five fab things to see and do in Hollywood
29th May 2020 by ScribbleStu
Hollywood is one of those wow-factor destinations that we all feel like we know a bit already.Preceded by its reputation as the dazzling heart of the world’s entertainment industry, it’s synonymous with celebrity, glamour, wealth and showbiz success - and revered for its incredible movie and tv history. It’s consistently adapted and reinvented itself over the years, resulting in a strange mixture of simultaneously old and modern, gleaming, groovy, and gritty. Uniquely, almost every...
5 top things to do in Bordeaux
10th May 2020 by ScribbleStu
Situated at the very heart of French wine culture, the city has a long and varied history, beautiful buildings, stunning old town and is a great place for a short trip or cultured weekend away. I spent 5 nights in Bordeaux at the height of summer and here are some of my top things to see and do. 1. Try some wine. I was actually quite surprised by the city’s lack of visual references to its relationship with wine. Maybe I was missing something, or perhaps it’s because the French aren’t so...
Rio de Janeiro: is it safe?
28th April 2020 by ScribbleStu
Thoughts of Rio de Janeiro conjure up an exotic concoction of carnivals, parties, beaches, mountains, sunshine, enormous Jesuses, Olympicsâ€¦ â€¦and crime.Renowned for its gang culture, gun crime and high death rates, the city of Rio is a microcosm of Brazil’s widespread corruption - largely stemming from many of the country’s politicians at the very top. But I’d urge anyone thinking of going not to forget all the great stuff too....
Visiting Iceland’s Blue Lagoon
22nd April 2020 by ScribbleStu
Iceland’s impressive, luminous Blue Lagoon is one of the country’s top tourist attractions and features on countless bucket lists. But for many who get to visit, it becomes one of those decisive â€œloved it or hated itâ€ places. I’ve been contemplating it’s â€œMarmite effectâ€ on the public....
So how expensive is Iceland, really?
9th March 2020 by ScribbleStu
The short is answer is: very. But don’t let that put you off going. I’ve just come back from the land of fire and ice and here are my top tips for making the most of your stay, and your money. Iceland’s a fascinating place filled with breathtaking once-in-a-lifetime scenery and natural wonders. With a limited amount of time in the country you’ll want to make the most of it. So don’t wait until you’re there to find out how close your accommodation is to stuff, or whether a particular...
Climbing the tallest sand dune in Europe
9th August 2019 by ScribbleStu
Part of what I love about travelling is the random inspiration you can get from some of the most unlikely placesâ€¦ Sitting in my local barber’s having my hair cut some time ago, I happened to mention that I’d just booked to stay in Bordeauxâ€¦ it turns out that the guy who owns the barber’s has family with a house in the same area. After a brief conversation, I left with a hand-scribbled list of things to see and do along with a dashing new haircut (even if I do say so myself!)...
Why you should visit Bergerac in the South of France
8th August 2019 by ScribbleStu
I’ve just got back from a couple of weeks in the swelteringly sunny South of France. The main reason for the trip was to celebrate my brother-in-law’s 40th birthday: he hired an enormous château near to Agen and invited his friends and family to stay and party with him for a few days. Flights: I chose Ryanair flights out to Toulouse from London Stansted, flying with lots of my partner’s family. And then British Airways flights for just him and myself back to London City Airport from...
Staying in lovely Lucca, Tuscany
21st June 2019 by ScribbleStu
Recently I took some time out to spend a month exploring Italy. The plan for the first 10 days was to visit the Naples/Sorrento/Amalfi area, seeing as much as we could with the kids who were travelling with us. Then give them a taste of true traveller life by moving on to Rome for a few days before they flew back home. And it was relentless. Exciting and brilliant, but also tiring and relentless. Did I mention relentless? Kids safely delivered back to the UK, we moved on to Tuscany. Having just...
Top 7 things to do in Lucca, Italy
14th June 2019 by ScribbleStu
I recently spent two relaxing weeks in the beautiful Tuscan town of Lucca. Here are my top recommendations for things to do in the city.Walk (or cycle) the wall. It’s just over 4km long and twelve metres high. A green space with panoramic views, it forms a perfect ring around the ancient city. It’s a fabulous place to go for a romantic stroll along the centuries-old tree-lined paths. And it makes an exhilarating cycle - there are plenty of bike hire shops in Lucca, enabling you to join the...
Five fab things to see in San Francisco
31st May 2019 by ScribbleStu
I recently spent a wonderful week in San Francisco. It was my first time in the city and I absolutely loved it! During a prolonged and unseasonable period of hot and sunny weather, I found SF to be a fabulously diverse and liberal place. It’s full of fascinating culture and communities, colour and brilliant things to see and doâ€¦...
A selection of books to get you in the mood to travel
An epic novel following four families over hundreds of years: bound by forbidden loves and marriages of convenience; dogged by vengeance and murderous secrets; torn apart by the irreconcilable differences of birth and faith, and brought together by the tumultuous history of their city. A book which bursts to life in the intrigue, corruption and glory of its people.
Chosen by Stuart