Saturday, 26 March 2016

4 Tips for Long Car Journeys Alone!

I was 6 weeks old the first time I spent a significant amount of time traveling in a car... Significant being 8 to 10 hours! Since then I have been very comfortable traveling in a car either road tripping or just traveling to see family.

Now my whole life I have never been alone on long car journeys until now! Last week I decided to drive to London to see a friend of mine, this is a 7 or 8 hour round trip so I had to occupy my time some how.

1. Audiobooks!

I am a huge fan of reading but I procrastinate my books so much I just end up with a massive "to be read" pile on my desk.
I always have my ipod on in the car, it's a very vintage 2nd gen. My radio isn't super great so I can't drive in complete silence! I solved this by digging out my teenage wet dream and hooked up my banging tunes to my car speakers.

Now music is great but I like to feel like I'm being productive and actually completing my reading goal this year (but I must say I'm very far behind). I dug up some audiobooks and sync'd my ipod.
But remember! If you don't finish your audiobook on your solo journey, when someone get's in the car with you they will be very confused and constantly try to talk over the story!

2. Snacks!

I have never been able to go more than a couple of hours without eating something. This is the same in every day life and on long journeys. If you ever want to claim shotgun in my car, bring me some sweets, crisps or even cereal and you're in!

3. Cruise over speed!

In my everyday life and car journeys I am not one for sticking to speed limits. It's not big and clever but it's just how I'm comfortable driving.
Yet, on motorways and with long journeys I seem to always cruise. I pretty much always drive between 50 and 75. I'm trying to be honest.
Driving comfortably and without being stressed about time means that you'll drive safer, happier and maybe appreciate the drive.

4. Take Breaks!

This seems obvious but sometimes people forget. I like to stop every 2-3 hours, or when I'm dying for a wee! In Britain Services often sell hot food, drinks, toys, books and more. There are things to do and often there's a hotel or similar attached if you really need to get your head down. Even if you're traveling with someone else, services are ideal, just try not to fuel up here because you will pay for it!

Chat soon.

Saturday, 19 March 2016

Visit Wales: Cyfarthfa Park

If you ask any Welsh person why Wales is great 9 out of 10 would comment on the beauty and greenery of this small country. Some may also mention our rich history, both beauty and history can be seen in Cyfarthfa Park and Museum (locally known as Cyfarthfa Castle).
Cyfarthfa Castle was built by the Iron Master of Merthyr, Mr Crawshay in the 1800s. Since then it has dominated the landscape and shaped the lives of the iron workers who lived there. In the early 20th century the house became a museum and school, with the surrounding landscape being open to the public.

So anyway, today we took the dog around the grounds today and it was lovely. Having days off and spending them doing wonderful adventures is my favourite thing.

We started off walking around the big lake at the bottom of the hill and worked our way up. Let's be honest most of Wales is walking uphill. We worked our way through the woodlands and found an old couple of ponds with lots of frogspawn and water insects. It was here that the dog decided it was time to jump in and rescue all the sticks. And I mean all the sticks!

We then worked our way back down through the meadows and sat and chillied while (the perfect place for a picnic). While we gradually made our way back to the car we realised we'd spent 2-3 hours just wandering and walking. The weather was bright and sunny but windy and cold, a welcome change from the harsh rain of winter! 

Chat soon

Monday, 14 March 2016

Review: The Essential Guide To First Time Backpacking by Amy Day

So like the last travel book I read and talked about, I'd like to do the same. What a wonderful set up and intro. God I'm a talented writer.

I've recently finished 'The Essential Guide To First Time Backpacking - Everything You Need To Know Before You Get On The Plane by Amy Day. It took me a couple of days reading on and off but I really enjoyed it. Amy Day is a wonderful writer and to be completely honest it felt like having a chat in a living room with a friend who knows everything you want to know. Throw in a couple of swear words and a bottle of wine and it would almost be like she was in the room with me. 

This book covers everything you need to know about backpacking from someone who has clearly been there, done that, got the T-shirt... More than once! She illustrates her advice with stories from her life, as well as some precautionary tales about other travelers.

This guide has a section for everything and for everyone, there is even a chapter for parents of backpackers. She does a good job of putting everyone's mind at ease about the big wide world that most of us hope to be exploring.

What I learned from this book? Although I will be traveling a very common route for backpackers, no one has done MY trip before, so no one, not even Amy Day can tell me everything I need to know about everything. I just need to let go and live in the moment. Prices vary from person to person. Get visas are different for everyone. Each person will  value items and countries in their own way.

My trip is just that, mine. Although I've picked up a lot of tips and ideas, she can't tell me exactly what it will be like. Let's be honest, I did know that before hand, but it's good to be reminded.

Chat soon.