Dis-Crete Getaway

9 February 2017

Finding that special island paradise for a few weeks of RnR can be tricky but there are a few spots across the world that really deliver the whole package. One of the best destinations for real island living are the glorious Greek islands and the most pretty of all is arguably Crete.

Crete is steeped in history from the ancient greek gods to the second world war. It is a long thin island with beaches offering a variety of visual pleasures. From the pink sands of Elafonisi to the long stretching golden miles of Falasarna. Not a renowned noisy destination for global tourists, but the hot spot for greeks taking a break from the mainland, the northern city of Chania offers you something magnificent. The Venetian harbour could almost have you thinking you are in Italy, with its cobbled narrow streets and dozens of outdoor restaurants, this is a city for romance. Sitting outside surrounded by ancient ruins dotted in fairy lights you will realise this island paradise is more appealing than a tropical paradise.

The landscape is varied and what will strike you is just how mountainous the island is. Lush green gorges make this a hiking holiday dream and for those who love to forage you will be rewarded with wild capers and wild horta (A wild green which is native to Crete, packed with vitamins and served in almost every restaurant)

Beach life is incredible and due to the amount of fantastic quality sandy shores, you won’t be subjected to over-crowding or sunbed fights. Crime on the island is very low so you can slip off your thongs, abandon your towel and not be worried they will go missing whilst you take a dip in beautiful turquoise waters. Whilst there are resorts offering up a fantastic range of watersports, these tend to be focussed on the west side of the island. Head north-east for real idyllic time out and the craziest action you’ll get is someone mooching past on a pedalo.

Whilst Greece is known for the greasy kebab and does offer up a large variety of fried foods, head away from the photo card menus to the smaller, quieter eateries. Dakos is a must try and truly a unique fusion between meze and bruschetta. Served on a barley rusk instead of bread and drizzled in the famous olive oil, the crisp rusk soaks up the juices of tomato and saltiness of feta cheese. Almost every village in Crete has it’s own signature cheese so ask your waiter to bring you their local version. Try the wine, white is better, red is a little hit and miss but if you find a good one then you will experience a beautifully smooth, full bodied drink which will stay with you. The island diet is predominantly vegetarian however they do specialise in chicken and squid. Try the deep fried courgettes with a little squeeze of fresh lemon.

Crete is an island to fall in love with and will have you desperate to return again and again.

Pack Light For An Extended Trip With A Capsule Wardrobe

They say that once you’ve got the travel bug, you never can sit still again. Once you’ve been out there and seen what the world has to offer, even if just on a short break, you realize just how amazing our planet it and just how much there is to see and do in it. Once you've caught the travel bug, the chances are that sooner or later you are going to want to get out there and spend longer exploring the world - a two-week vacation only lets you see so much, whereas an extended trip gives you the chance to see the authentic side of a country.

Instead of talking about where you should go, what you should see, and who you should travel with, today I’m talking fashion and how to use a capsule wardrobe to pack light when heading off an extended trip. It’s not like you need the extra baggage charges, is it? So packing light is a must, especially if you plan on traveling around. To make packing the perfect capsule wardrobe easier, below are a few suggestions to take note of.

Take the climate into account

The first thing is to take the climate into account. Admittedly, if you are planning on traveling to more than one continent, this can be a little tricky. However, wherever you plan on going, make sure to take the climate into account when packing. As the last thing you want is to have to waste money on buying extra items of clothing.

Pick a basic color scheme

For capsule wardrobe success, it’s a good idea to pick a color scheme to work around. Take into account the types of items you plan on taking with you, as this may dictate your color scheme. Leggings are a must-have, which means that black needs to be part of your color scheme. A neutral color scheme made up of black, white, and gray clothing should work well, you can then pick pieces from your wardrobe or buy new pieces that will work with this color scheme.

Don’t forget plenty of accessories

To ensure that your capsule wardrobe doesn’t get boring, make sure to pack plenty of accessories. Ideally, you want these to be little things that you can use to jazz up each look. Think jewelry, bags, hats, scarves, and shoes.

Pick pieces that don’t need ironing

Don’t make the mistake of packing items that will need ironing, because you won’t have access to an iron. Pick pieces that you can wash, hang up, and that will dry crease-free. The last thing you want to have to waste your money on while traveling is a launderette.

Don’t plan for ‘what ifs'

Whatever you do, don’t make the mistake of planning for ‘what ifs’. The truth is if you pack items in case you need them, you are going to end up with far too many clothes in your suitcase. So, don’t think about what ifs, instead just pack items that you know are adaptable. Take leggings, for instance; they can be great for casually teaming with a cute tee when exploring or can be teamed with a dress for a night out - pick pieces that are adaptable.

So, there you have it, how to use a capsule wardrobe to pack light for an extended trip.

The Singapore Sling

4 February 2017

Asia is the biggest continent in the world and offers travellers a variety of scenery, culture and cuisine but if you are looking for a destination with incredible night life, you need look no further than Singapore.

Singapore is a modern and vibrant city which really comes alive at night. It is home to the singapore sling a fantastic cocktail of gin, cherry brandy, Cointreau, Dom Benedictine, Grenadine, mellowed with lime and pineapple juice. One of the best places to sample this is the iconic Raffles Hotel. In 1915 mixologists first created this cocktail right here, so heading to the hotels Long Bar is a must to kick start your evening.

If you like to take your parties outside the Tanjong Beach Club hold Full Steam Ahead three times a year. You’ll be barefooting under the full moon to some of the country’s best DJ’s all to the backdrop of Singapore’s magnificent skyline. Take this spiritual vibe a step further by slipping off to Going Om. There is a very tiny hippy community in Singapore and this amazing venue has been heavily influenced by Nepalese culture. You will be entertained by fire twirlers, dancers and acoustic performances. All from the comfort of giant pillows. Outside most of the seating is covered in foliage, bringing a real natural vibe to this modern party den. It may be worth considering these tips for staying safe when travelling alone if you want to take in the best of Singapore without getting into trouble.

If you really want to admire the panoramic views of singapore then head up to Ku De Ta. It is a super classy venue in Marina Bay Sands Skypark and sits 257m above sea level. After a bite to eat at the famous Cedele Bakery Cafe move your night up a notch and watch the sunset from the best view in Asia. If you need to come back to earth, you can do it gradually by hitting the highest bar in the world’s dance floor which enjoys unobstructed views of the city lights. The resident DJ is pretty well known in the city and apparently takes requests, just try not to cheese it up too much!

If you fancy a night out with a little bit of a health kick then try a TCM cocktail at Jekyll & Hyde. These guys have taken ingredients from traditional chinese medicine and mixed them up with a few ‘better for you’ spirits such as sake, white rum and vodka. We can’t guarantee the health benefits of using shiitake mushrooms in a cocktail but it’s has to be worth a try right?

Through the city there are plenty of other, less party, things to try. Singapore doesn’t shut down at 10pm. It keeps going as long as you do. It doesn’t matter what age you are, if you are travelling alone or on a romantic trip, Singapore really does have it all. Breathtaking views, incredible people and a soul that will leave you with memories to treasure for the rest of your life.

The Many Secrets Of A Private Holiday Home

If travelling is a wonderful thing, what makes it so is to be able to share perfect moments with the people you care the most about. It is about being able to take your family, or to go with your friends, and enjoy a peaceful break together, or maybe discover new horizons at the same time. However, when you choose to go on holiday, there are many options that you could choose from. Would you prefer to stay in a hotel? Would you rather pick a rental vacation? Both have their pros and cons, of course. But for today, what we want to look at, is why renting a private home is the best thing that could happen to you when your feet are feeling itchy with travel lust.

Cheaper For Holidaymakers

For a start, if you are planning a holiday with your friends or your family, or even both, you will soon find that the hotel costs can be very high. While travelling in numbers can be an advantageous experience when it comes to group tours and safety, it can also be quite an investment when you start considering hotel rooms and restaurants. Going private for your holiday plan and renting a home for your group can save up to 50% compared to hotel prices. Additionally, you will also see huge savings when it comes to food, as you can organize to cook a lot yourself. This means more money for all the other activities!

A Smart Investment To Attract Urban Holidaymakers

There’s another advantage that is worth considering for those who love to go back to the same region. Why don’t you consider buying a rental property so that you don’t need to look for a place to stay every year? If you think this sounds like a risky investment, think again! Holiday homes in peaceful retreats, such as the beautiful Catskill Mountains which attract VIPs looking for an incognito life, are becoming the next buy-to-let investment across the globe, with landlords making huge benefits on the renting of their properties. So maybe it’s worth looking for holiday properties to buy at a short distance of urban areas? You could get in touch with real estate agencies locations that are easy to reach and famously quiet, such as Windham NY real estate in the Catskills - an attractive world of celebrities only 2 hours of NYC - and discuss the different options that are available for your finances.

A Space To Call Your Own

Finally, a private home is a place where you make your own rule, whether you go as a holidaymaker and a landlord. There’s no room service to clean the room, but at the same time, there’s no room service to wake you up. If you wake up too late, you don’t have to skip breakfast because you’ve missed the buffet hours; you can simply open the fridge and pour yourself a glass of orange juice while you ponder whether to continue with cereals or a delicious croissant. You can enjoy the holiday at your own pace, and you can spend the evening chatting together without the hotel staff clearing up the bar area around you, or other guests frowning at you. And more importantly, if this is your property, you are free to decorate as you see fit. This means total freedom for a huge homely feeling.

@heycharchar on Instagram

© Charlotte Anne. Design by Fearne.