On the final day of our cruise through the British Isles, we chose the day trip to Paris excursion. With just six hours to spend in this big city, we did our best to maximize time and hit a few monuments, while also being able to enjoy a cappuccino at a cute sidewalk cafe. After all, the ambiance is Paris is one of my very favorite things to experience! Today I’m sharing five things to do in Paris if you’ve only got a few hours to spare! (I know a lot of flights have long layovers in Paris, so even if you’re not doing a day trip by cruise, you could still take note of this list!).
One of my very favorite things to see in Ireland: The Blarney Castle. This medieval castle dates back to 1446, with views of vast Irish countryside (truly, I have never seen so many shades of green in my life!), the ability to climb to the top (the stairs are quite narrow and steep), a few dungeons in sight (eerie and fascinating all in one) and the best part? If you’ve got Irish roots, you may want to hold to tradition and kiss the Blarney Stone! Unsanitary? You betcha. But awesome? 100%. Blake is full-on Irish (true story: Baby P might just be a ginger, ha!), so visiting the Blarney Castle was such a special treat while on our cruise through the British Isles in September!
What to do with just a few hours in Dublin? Eat, drink, stroll…repeat repeat repeat. 😉 Blake and I have become pros at maximizing our time during day trips into cities (hello, cruise life!) – and after enjoying two day trips to Dublin on separate occasions, there’s three things I’d highly recommend…
One of my absolute favorite cities I’ve ever visited, and hands down the one I tell everyone to add to their travel bucket list, is Edinburgh, Scotland. The sights (Harry Potter dreamland!), the people (kindest you’ll ever meet), the food (delicious!)…the combination of centuries old architecture juxtaposed with modern buildings, restaurants and shopping centers is something unlike anything else. It sort of reminds me of Rome but in a less gimmicky, touristy way in the sense that you’ll be sitting outside at a cafe and boom – directly to your right is the Pantheon…ya know, just a casual construction built in 126 AD and perfectly standing (…like what?! Insanely incredible!). I don’t know about your city, but you definitely won’t experience anything close to that feeling in Austin, Texas, ha! Needless to say, cities with such rich histories are my very favorite to visit. It’s so fascinating to walk amongst castles and stroll through alleyways that have been there for hundreds of years…and you will experience just that and so much more in Edinburgh!
Is your mouth watering 1. looking at pictures of the bread above and 2. just thinking of bread?! YES ME TOO. Okay, glad we’re on the same page about that one… 😉 If there’s one thing that Europe does right (well…they do a lot of things right but we won’t go down that rabbit hole haha), it’s most certainly bread…scones, croissants, french bread, focaccia…you name it, it’s delicious and gives my heart pangs because there’s simply nothing like sipping hot coffee or tea and indulging in freshly baked bread, homemade butter and yummy jam…especially while at an outdoor cafe in Paris or better yet, at a darling cottage house in the midst of the Irish countryside. Yes, that scene I just set was REAL LIFE for all of four glorious hours and I am so excited to give y’all a closer look AND share a super easy, wonderful Irish soda bread recipe.
Ohh goodness, I definitely felt all the nostalgia pangs as I organized this travel post! It’s been a full week since we arrived home from our two week cruise through the British Isles with Princess Cruises, and while we are happy to be back into our normal routine and over the let lag, I must admit that sorting through photos is definitely hitting me in the feels! This was our third cruise with Princess (and it was our third reunion trip with our favorite travel blogger gang, too! Always a blast to be reunited!), and we couldn’t have asked for a more incredible trip. If you follow me on Instagram, you likely saw a play-by-play of each stop along our 12-day cruise (…and lots of videos of Blake sleeping on bus rides, in the ship lobby – you name it…this guy was asleep on it haha!!), but I wanted to be sure and start off my British Isles travel diary posts (lots more to come!) by sharing 1. our itinerary (England, Ireland, Scotland – will break it down by port & city further into this post) and 2. what I wore + what to pack. I’m also excited to share my favorite stop of the trip with y’all, along with why we love cruising! So, let’s get to it…
You know what I love? A restful, relaxing weekend. Lately work and life has been so crazy that finding two consecutive days to fully escape has seemed nearly impossible. Blake started a new job, some personal things were taking up a lot of my free time and getting out of Austin simply wasn’t in the cards. Which is where the idea of a stay-cation came to our rescue! As Austin has become a booming city, it’s cool factor has grown dramatically over the years and new hotels are popping up left and right to accommodate the influx of visitors. Fairmont Austin opened their gorgeous 37-story, luxury hotel in March of 2018 and lemme tell ya, it blew us away! Given that we live in the ‘burbs, we were excited to stay in the heart of downtown, with access to restaurants, bars, shopping – you name it – within walking distance.
I’m excited to give y’all a glimpse at our lovely stay-cay! Disclaimer: Blake and I share a love of indulging in sips and eats when we’re in vacation-mode…so prepare for some yummy food pics!
A big thank you to Fairmont Hotels for sponsoring this post! All opinions are my own.
**Illustration by Kimberlee Watson
That feeling when you haven’t slept all week (hello, delirium! Hello, dark circles!), you have crossed nearly every item off your to-do list (and had zero breakdowns…I am so proud of myself, ha!) and you’re bursting with excitement because you and your favorite travel partner are about to spend a full on two weeks exploring and soaking up another culture (and the #1 place on Blake’s bucket list)… Well! That feeling is currently welling up inside me because Blake and I are about to spend the next 14 days in…
Hello friends! Ohh the long anticipated Iceland travel diary is finally HERE! In November, I partnered with the wonderful Noken to create a promo video for their OFFICIAL launch! In a nutshell, Noken curates incredible end-to-end trips through Iceland (…and now Colombia, too!) and yes…they do ALL the work (hotels, rental cars, itinerary) and you just get to soak up the magic of this stunning country. I grabbed my two best friends, Elissa & Ben (…y’all probably know them very well by now – my besties since age 15…the best travel trio!) and we ventured to Iceland for a week of road trip bliss starting in Reykjavik and through southern Iceland. To say this was the trip of a lifetime is truly an understatement…I have never seen SO much vast beauty in one country. From driving on an open road (…with no one in sight for miles!) and a changing terrain every 20 minutes (…one minute you’re in a white powdered snow globe, the next in a mossy green lava field) to hiking on a glacier and looking out on giant pieces of ice in the middle of a black sand beach…Noken curated the most magnificent trip!
Sharing more about what we did, as well as a Noken discount code for LL readers (jump on this one, y’all – they plan THE BEST trips!) and the video at the end of this post!
Hello, mates! (…just a little something I picked up in Australia… 😉 ). This is probably my favorite travel diary to date because OMG Australia was jaw-drop stunning. I’d seen the Pinterest photos and heard the rave reviews from my traveling friends (…flight attendants seem to know best!) and they were 110% correct. Australia is heaven on earth. Kind (and happy!) people, unworldly beaches, the cutest summer clothing and fabulous metropolitan cities throughout. We visited Melbourne for the first three days of our trip, then finished out with a full week in Sydney. My best friend Elissa is a flight attendant for Delta, so we grabbed our other galpal Valerie (also a flight attendant) and decided to trek across the world for 10 days in paradise. Though the 15 hour plane ride is brutal (sharing my tips for this lengthy flight further into this post), as soon as we stepped our feet into the Sydney sand, it was all worth it.
Outfit details: WHITE SHORTS (wearing size 25) / OTS STRIPED TOP / BIKER SHORTS + CROP TOP SPORTS BRA / HIGH WAIST BIKINI (mine is last season HERE, linking to this years and it’s SO CUTE. Wearing XS in both top + bottoms) / MY FAVORITE WALKING SHOES (give yourself time to break them in!) / STRIPED BIKINI (wearing size US6, I am normally a 0/2 in suits and this brands runs teeny!)