Category Archives: Travel with Katie

Every adventure I have whether on day trips around the UK to amazing experiences abroad.

I Dream of a Place…

Bulgaria, living abroad, dreaming
Being back from Bulgaria and reflecting on all the traveling I’ve done these past few years has really made me think clearly about the life I want. I know most people come back from holiday with the blues and the stress of going back to work but my sadness runs much deeper. I genuinely dislike coming back to the UK and its because I know in my heart I do not belong in that culture at this time in my life, maybe I’ll feel settled in Britain in the later years?

The moment I woke up the first morning in Bulgaria and I felt the warmth of the sun kiss my skin, the freshness of water melon upon my lips and the creak of the old wooden floorboard upon my bare feet, I was in heaven. I felt alive.
There is a deep yearning within me that wishes to live in a place that has a gentle atmosphere to its way of living, with a soft spiritual undertone. I dream of a place where I live in a simple abode near the sea or surrounded by never-ending woodland on the fringe of a small town. Of I place where I wake up and I don’t feel cold or damp and constantly need to wear slippers to keep my toes warm. Of a place that actually smells and sounds delicious.
I dream of a place where the fireflies sparkle at night and the wolves howl at the moon from a distance. Where the crickets sing and I watch bumblebees leisurely slurp nectar from flowers.

Whenever I go on a trip, it’s not just to relax and forget my stresses back in the UK, Jon & I actually research the country and it’s towns we visit to see if it could be called home? We even look at what properties are available in local estate agents and we weigh up the pros and cons of the location’s lifestyle, so far we’ve both agreed that Pokhara, Nepal is our favourite location to possibly live, in the future. I know people who live abroad and (for example) teach English online to earn money, who run tours and workshops, one friend on a whim went to work in a yoga studio in Portugal for a year and before that she was teaching SUP Yoga in Australia. I have read an article of a man leaving behind his horrible job as electrician for street lights in which he’d spend the cold winter months in rain jackets fixing lampposts on a meager wage to now running his own small boat cruises in Spain and being financially comfortable. The concept of having a job and working is changing and many jobs can be done wherever in the world. I know graphic designers who work from home, as do HR business assistants and even beauty therapists who’ve converted a room in their house into a small salon/therapy room. So, ‘home’ as well as ‘work’ can be ANYWHERE you want it to be!

The realization that living abroad is actually a possibility for me makes me happy. I just need to do my Teen yoga teacher training this August and get a few belly dance and kids yoga classes done to boost my resume then I think I need to take the risk. I want to experience drinking coconut milk from an actual coconut, to wade in the sea with manta rays, to learn new tribal dances from the locals, to slowly learn their language and read a book on a hammock right on the beach as I eat healthy, locally grown produce. To sit on the beach and not feel a chill in the air, to see the sea shimmer Bioluminescent waves created by blue algae and to be greeted by hummingbirds or exotic looking parrots on my balcony in the mornings would just be pure bliss to me.

To also be in a place that doesn’t treat me like a weirdo for my spirituality. Bali for example has this beautiful, feminine spirituality in its culture. They have small temples in their gardens dedicated to spirit guardians of the home and you have to honour them with flowers and food. How beautiful is that? I want to be in a place where I’m treated like I’m normal for talking about the chakras, moon blessings and dream interpretations.

I don’t need a big fancy house that’s worth a lot of money when I die or a luxury car and a massive paycheck every month. I just want to enjoy what I do (most of the time- no job is perfect), be financially comfortable, live simply and humbly, be as Eco-friendly as possible, travel as much as I can and love every moment that I’m alive and experiencing amazing things.

I dream of teaching English perhaps in a local Thai school as well as teach belly dance and yoga classes or retreats on the side.
Jon dreams of working on his travel photography, create videos of his explorations and perhaps run photography tours around the country we have chosen to settle in whilst continuing his freelance work as a commercial photographer for brands. And we don’t have to do any of this in the UK.

My mum always says “What is meant for you, will never go past you.”
So we shall see if we can manifest this life for ourselves, even if it’s only short lived, I’d love to be able to say “I did that.” and one day tell stories to my Grandchildren of all my adventures!

Portugal, the Algarve: Lagos

Lagos
we stayed over night in a hotel in Portimao instead of heading back to Faro so that we could catch an hour long train journey to Lagos. The main reason we wanted to venture here was for the cliff side walk which makes this part of Portugal famous. The coastlines here are breathtaking and another destination to put on your bucket list.
Lagos is probably our favourite place during our stay and we both said we could live here, although we have no idea what the high season is like however it did appear less commercialized than Portimao.

Lagos town has quaint shops and your usual souvenir stores alongside cobbled streets and beautiful architecture, it had a sleepier aura than the high rise resort complexes of Portimao. First we ventured to a local fish market to see the locals doing what they do best. The Portuguese are renowned fishermen throughout history, hence the reason why so much of their murals depict sea goddesses and mermaids on stone walls and I am pretty sure they have their fair share of pirate tales too!
Lagos is a harbour town so there are all kinds of fish on the menus of all restaurants, we stepped into a local fish market and found it intriguing because there was an array of fish, squid, crab and octopus plus this is their livelihood and it’s good to be involved in another culture somehow, it was also great for Jon’s photography, capturing a small glimpse into how people live in a different culture.

visit Lagos

attractions in Lagos

the beauty of Lagos

Continue reading

Portugal, the Algarve: Portimão

Portimao
To have a whole day in Portimao (during winter with less hours of sun) we were up very early to catch the first morning train. I think we were up at 6am to be at the station by 6:30am and on the train at 6:45am. We decided to book an overnight stay in an apartment in Portimao since we planned to visit Lagos for our last day and so it saved us from going back to Faro only to board an even longer train journey to Lagos. Getting on a train in Portugal is very easy, much like the UK, you just turn up and buy a ticket.

We arrived in Portimao at about 9am which is perfect timing since all the businesses were getting ready for the day. We opted to find our hotel first in order to leave some of our things in our room. We were a little bit disappointed with the weather because rain was to be expected and I forgot to bring my rain coat. From sunrise until 11am I was cold and felt a bit damp but I didn’t let it bother me too much since how many people have opportunities like this, to travel and enjoy another culture? The weather was expected to clear up later in the day and Jon bought me a breakfast burger to cheer me up!

algarve

Portugal

visit the algarve

visit Portugal

Continue reading

Portugal: The Algarve, Pousada Palacio de Estoi

the pink palace Estoi
We very nearly didn’t go here because even though it had rave reviews, Jon took one look at the site via google results and thought “why would I want to just see this building and there isn’t much to see in the local village either.” On the second day of Faro we knew we were to spend our third day in Portimao and our fourth day in Lagos but couldn’t really think of anything to do in the present moment. After doing a bit of shopping in Faro for his mum’s birthday present we decided to venture to the Pink Palace in Estoi as something to do and to pass the time. It did not disappoint and in fact surprised us. It is actually a very interesting place to visit and is now one of my top attractions I recommend you see when traveling. The photos on the internet do not do it justice, it’s a really unusual palace now turned hotel and if you are a lover of that Greco-roman mythology and style, then you’ll fall in love with this place because it is swimming in statues of mermaids, goddess depictions and mosaics, it even houses a shrine dedicated to Venus (goddess of love) and Diana (goddess of the moon and hunting). The hotel has one grand room and main garden open to the public, the rest of it’s quarters are private unless you want to pay a fee to stay there.

pink palace, Portugal

visit Portugal

things to see in the Algarve

Continue reading

Mount Edgecombe with Millie

boat to mount edgecombe
The weather this weekend took a turn for the worst and it’s pretty grey outside with plentiful torrential rain, making it not likely to venture out into nature. Last Sunday was a different story, we took Jon’s parent’s puppy Milly out to Mount Edgcombe nature park. We took her by boat as that is the quickest way over there. Once over on the other side, you are literally in Cornwall, pretty strange feeling that Plymouth and Cornwall are separated by a river!

I have lived in Devon for nearly 5 years now and I am surprised I have never been to Mount Edgecombe considering it’s right on my door step! Since Milly is still a puppy, it is really important to encourage her to encounter new experiences and adventures as much as possible so all in one day she experienced the Royal William Yard which is an up and coming residential area with cafes and galleries on the harbour, being on a boat and going for a run around Mount Edgecombe. Needless to say, she was exhausted the next day from so much stimulation.

Continue reading