London Leopard ♥

Thursday, 9 August 2018

Food To Try In Malta ♥

I have just returned from a week long trip to the island of Malta. I was on a mission to try as much traditional food as possible. Take a look at the food I discovered below...














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Sunday, 29 July 2018

How I Spend Less Money On Travel ♥


I am forever being asked how I travel all the time. The way I view travel is that there are two options. You can splurge on a 5* trip once a year, or you can travel on a budget and do multiple trips in a year. There are many ways in which I spend less money on travel and I want to share my tips with those who are new to travelling.

Spending less money on flights
Browse for flights in "incognito mode" which prevents your internet movements from being tracked. This means that the price of the flight will stay the same.

Travel during low season because flights will be cheaper as the demand is lower. Every destination has a different low season. It's cheaper to travel to Europe during the winter (apart from December) and cheaper to travel to South East Asia during the summer (because it is the monsoon season).

Fly with low cost airlines. Yes I know they fly out of regional airports but sometimes a coach journey to the airport can be as little as £5. The key players in Europe are Ryan air, Easy jet, and Wizz air.

Spending less money on accommodation 
Consider using airbnb because it is cheaper to rent a room from a local than stay in a hotel. I booked my first airbnb stay for my trip to Rome in May. It cost me £65 for 3 nights, and the cheapest hotel I could find was £170. See the difference?.

If you are staying in a hotel try not to book something that is in the middle of the city centre. My trick is to book something that is a 15 minute walk away from the central area. You will see the price drop significantly, and you can also burn some calories with that daily walk.

Book a private room in a hostel if you are travelling in pairs or as a group, it tends to work out cheaper than a hotel room. When I went with my friend to Slovenia we booked a private room in a hostel for 2 nights and ended up paying £40 a night (£20 each).

Spending less money on food 

Try to book a hotel that includes breakfast. That is one meal out of the way, and one less cost to be concerned about. It also allows your day to go much smoother because you won't have to scramble around to find a cafe every morning.

Consider having a "supermarket packed lunch". Go to the supermarket before you start your day and buy a sandwich, some snacks, and a drink. This will cost you half the amount you would spend in a restaurant.

Try the street food. Have a bratwurst in Germany, have some pad thai in Thailand, have some frites in Belgium. Street food is often a lot cheaper and tastier than restaurant food. This can be helpful particularly in pricey destinations such as Spain, where there are many markets selling tapas.

Spending less money on attractions 
In most big European cities, all museums are free on the last Sunday of each month. This is something to consider when planning dates. Another way in which you can save money is by visiting the small "less famous" museums. They are usually more authentic and have a cheaper entry fee.

Consider spending time at natural attractions and religious buildings. They are relaxing and most do not cost a penny. I don't remember paying a penny to enter some of the beautiful temples in Northern Thailand. The ones in Bangkok cost money of course, but the further away from the capital city you go, the cheaper the attractions are.

                      llondon leopard
                           xoxo

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Sunday, 8 July 2018

Things that I Love/Hate Spending Money On ♥


Love
Good quality food
When it comes to food I don't mind blowing cash, if I feel that it can be beneficial for my health. I wish that I could afford to eat organic food but I can't. So I pop in to the organic shop once a month (usually on pay day) to get some organic food. I generally get nut milk, snacks, and sodium free soup. I have started to care more about my health over the past couple of years. 

Travel
As you all know...I am mad about travel. the majority of my disposable income goes towards travel. I don't mind spending money on flights, because I would rather spend my money on life experiences than materialistic objects. Does that even make sense? haha. 

Organic health/beauty products
I also try to go organic when it comes to my skin/makeup. For example I use a sulfate free face wash, sulfate free shampoo, and rayon free sanitary towels. During the winter I even use a block of raw Shea butter to moisturise my skin. 


Hate
Clothes
I must be the least girly girl in the world. I don't see the point in spending money on clothes unless you need them. I have actually started selling off some of my wardrobe, because there are so many things that I don't wear.

Toilet roll
This is such a strange one! but...why the hell do I have to spend money to wipe my ass? actually let me rephrase that. Why does it cost so much to wipe my ass?. Toilet paper should not be £2.50. The prices are going up all the time just for a thin piece of recycled paper. 

London underground
Don't get me started on this over priced service. The metro in Spain is better. The metro in Italy is better. The metro in Germany is better. London Underground is just not worth the price at all. The trains are hot (no air conditioning) and very small. But the price goes up drastically every year for what reason? If you are going to keep increasing the price then at least increase the quality of the service. 

                          llondon leopard
                                xoxo
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Skopje, Macedonia ♥

It's nice when a friend finally sticks to travel plans and you don't have to go alone. So I had a buddy on my recent trip to Skopje Macedonia. It's also no secret that I LOVE the Balkan countries. They are cheap, barely touched by tourists, the food is good, and the people are friendly. Macedonia was no different to this. 

There are so many fountains all over this city...


This dish is called turli tawa...it's a vegetable and meat stew. 



Mother Theresa Memorial House...



Millennium Cross at the top of Vodno Mountain...
Balkan countries always do amazing salads. I feel like these countries have the freshest vegetables in Europe...

A church in the middle of a village...


Matka Canyon...

Cocktail time...

Macedonia Square...

Drinking Rakija...never again. I could handle it in Turkey. I could handle it in Bulgaria. But not in this country.

A squat toilet in Europe!

                                                         llondon leopard 
                              xoxo
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Thursday, 28 June 2018

Images of Istanbul ♥

I am back from Istanbul Turkey....well it's been like 5 weeks since I have returned to be honest. It has been a busy 5 weeks and I literally forgot to even publish this. But it's ready now...so take a look at some of my snaps from Istanbul. 

Browsing around the Arasta Bazaar near the blue mosque. If you're looking for quiet and peaceful shopping then this is the place to go. 

Ayasofya is like an old church that has been turned in to a museum. I found it really interesting because you can see paintings of Jesus and Islamic art right next to it. So you can see two different religions displayed in this building. 

What is the number one food to try in Istanbul? Kebab of course! no not the doner kebab that you can find all over Europe. Try the other types of local kebab dishes (the one in this picture was called adana kofte) 


The infamous blue mosque. They will give you a headscarf and an appropriate "cover up" to wear for free. The outside was beautiful but the inside was disappointing because tourists only get to see one small empty area. 


Eminou pier is so beautiful, and I would definitely recommend it as a place to get some fresh air. Don't forget to try the fresh fish sandwich. You can see local old men fishing in front of you, and the stall will cook the fish in front of you. I heard some tourists speaking English and pounced on them with the "hey could you please take a photo for me?". 

So Turkish people are known for their hospitality. This restaurant gave me some free baklava after my meal. 

Posing outside Ayasofya. The colour of the building matches my dress!

A random photo of a shop selling Turkish delight. I brought back a box that tasted like a mix of coffee, nuts, and vanilla. 

                       llondon leopard
                            xoxo
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Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Monthly Goals: June


June is a perfect month to try and get things done. The sun has started come out and summer is on it's way. I want to change something in each area of my life, which is why I have created categories for my goals. It's easier to keep things simple and have one goal for each category. Lets be honest, nobody will ever stick to a huge list of goals.

HOME
My goal is to do a deep clean. My balcony is rarely used because obviously I live in a cold country. But it needs to be cleaned because the weather is getting warmer. A lot of places need a deep clean in my flat to be honest. 

WORK
Find a new job. I am planning to leave my job at the end of July because it is a temporary role, and there is no room for growth in the company. I am too hard working to stay in the same position for ever without any progression. I have spent the past week filling out some job applications and writing personal statements. It's so time consuming! 

TRAVEL
This is a difficult one. I think my goal would have to be to NOT book any more flights this month. I don't think I should book any more flights until I have found a new job. 


HEALTH
Spend more time at the gym. I joined a couple of months ago but don't have a consistent schedule. It's very hard to find the time because I am working 6 days a week this month, and do long hours in my main job. 

                                                      llondon leopard
                           xoxo
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Monday, 28 May 2018

My Favourite Things About Spring ♥


The flowers come out. You can see pretty daisies and daffodils blooming in the grass. I have also started buying flowers weekly to put in my kitchen. 

The clothing choices become broad. It feels like the only things you can wear in winter are jumpers, coats, and jeans. To be honest...I started to get VERY bored of these clothes by the middle of December. Spring is great because it's warm enough to have such a wide selection of clothes. You can wear jumpers...dresses...skirts...t-shirts. 

I feel more motivated. I don't know what it is about Spring but it always makes me feel more motivated. This season tends to make me think about what I would like to do before the end of the year. 

It's British tax return season. What is not to love about receiving money back from the government? last year I used my tax return to take 2 nice Summer holidays. A week in Portugal and a few days in Amsterdam. This year I intend to be more wise with the money. 

Many TV shows start their new seasons. I have noticed that Spring is a prime time for television, and many of my favourite shows are starting new seasons/series. 

                     llondon leopard
                           xoxo
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Friday, 20 April 2018

Parading Around Prague ♥

I have just returned from a 3 day trip to Prague, Czech Republic. It was an interesting trip and did not turn out to be what I expected. I enjoyed the city but it did not "wow" me in the way that everybody describes. I guess it has become quite commercialised due to the rapid increase in tourism. Anyway...take a look at some photos from my trip. 

  Day 1
  Charles Bridge
Charles Bridge is one of the "must see" attractions in Prague. I came here on my first day. It is very crowded at all hours...even at 11pm.


  Czech Beer Museum
I also went to the Czech beer museum which was close to my hotel. It is very small with a few rooms to provide you with information on beer making. Then you go down to the bar and get to taste 4 beers (this is included in your ticket). I was a tad "intoxicated" after 2 beers and had to sit there for 40 minutes before finishing the others. 

Dinner at O'che's Bar
I have been curious about Goulash for a while. It definitely exceeded my expectations. It is like stewed beef with bread dumplings. Very very filling!



Day 2 
John Lennon Wall
After dealing with masses of crowds yesterday, I decided to start early on Day 2. I went to the John Lennon wall at 8.30am and it was empty. The wall is absolutely beautiful. 

Love locks
These cool love locks were on a little bridge next to the John Lennon wall. 

Prague Castle
This is the view from Prague Castle. I sat and watched the beautiful red rooftops for a long while. 

Day 3
Vysehrad
This is a very quiet area of Prague. It is a fort that has churches, a graveyard, and many views. 

Smazeny syr (fried cheese)
Fried cheese is supposedly a local dish in Prague. It is actually very nice, and the potatoes balance out the rich cheesy flavour.  

       Vysehrad
Sitting outside a colourful church in Vysehrad. 

llondon leopard
xoxo




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Saturday, 31 March 2018

10 Things I Can't Live Without ♥

My UGG boots: Look...I really do not care if they are out of fashion. Those suckers are the only shoes that keep my feet warm in the winter.

Hand sanitiser: the thought of bacteria disturbs me...especially as a traveller. I know that it is lurking everywhere and always carry hand sanitiser. I also sanitise my tray table on the plane with anti bacterial wipes on every flight. 

Travel: I start to get withdrawal symptoms if I haven't travelled for more than 2 months. I could not live without travel it HAS to happen...even if it's a weekend city break. 

Winter: I like winter 10 times more than summer. I love the feeling of being cosy and sitting by a candle lit window. 

Seafood: you have probably noticed that most of my travel photo diaries contain seafood. We don't have fresh sea food in England (it is all imported and filled with chemicals/ pesticides) so I love to indulge in fish whenever I travel. 

My laptop: I don't have a TV in my flat and choose not to have one because I don't want to pay for a TV licence (we are the only country that has this bill). I tend to watch all my programmes online as a result of this. I also use it for travel research, online shopping, and to edit my travel vlogs. 

Silence: introverts need silence sometimes...or most of the time.

Eastenders: I have been watching this show since I was a child. 

Leopard print: I love leopard print. My bedroom is a mix of black, silver, purple, and leopard. That sounds so weird right? but trust me it looks good.  

Oil: this is one of the reasons why I love visiting Mediterranean countries...to bring back oil! I use olive oil for cooking, coconut oil and castor oil for my scalp. Tea tree oil whenever I have skin irritations. 

                      llondon leopard
                           xoxo


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Sunday, 25 March 2018

Observations From Stockholm ♥

So I have now visited 3 Scandinavian countries, and have different opinions on each. I hated Norway, I loved Denmark, and I loved Sweden. Sweden happens to be my most recent trip and I want to share some observations about the capital city of Stockholm.
Everyone is very attractive
Swedish people are so attractive! they have beautiful pixie shaped eyes and they are all so pretty. It doesn't matter how tall, short, thick, or thin they are. Even the old people are attractive! Slovenia is the only other country where I think at least 90% of the population are attractive.


They speak fluent English

Like the rest of Scandinavia, everybody in Sweden speaks fluent English. It is interesting when I listen to how perfect their accent is. They sound slightly American but they speak British English. I also find it fascinating how there are so many similarities between the Swedish and English. Like for example you can greet somebody with "hey" in both Swedish and English. There were so many words I read and understood because they were similar to English.


Many places don't accept cash

A lot of places in Stockholm do not accept cash and only accept card. It was annoying sometimes because I like to use cash when I travel abroad, in order to familiarise myself with the currency. It also helps me to avoid overspending because I can physically see how much is remaining.


They can handle the weather 

The Swedish can certainly handle subzero conditions. It was -9 degrees Celsius on my first day there. I saw people out jogging in leggings and long sleeved tops. I know that exercise warms you up but it was -9! the lakes had turned to ice and it was snowing.


It is very expensive 
The city is very expensive...just like the rest of Scandinavia. A pint of beer costs the equivalent of £10. A meal out for one will cost roughly £25-30, and that is just for a main course and drink. So yes it is very expensive but it could be worse. I found Norway to be a lot worse in terms of price.

                     llondon leopard
                          xoxo


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