48 hours in Nuremberg: best tour guide for an amazing visit

Nuremberg is the second largest city in Bavaria, which has a lot to offer, but often is outshined by Munich.

I have visited Nuremberg many times because one of my best friends live there, and since I had the chance to get to know the city better, I would like to share with you my tips to enjoy this part of Germany the best way possible.

1. Felsenkeller labyrinth

You will get to know Nuremberg from a whole different perspective. The labyrinth of caves will take you down, underneath the city center and you will see places that have been there for centuries, but are hidden beneath the streets of Nuremberg. Some of the cellars you will see are four stories deep but very stable.

Originally these rock-cut cellars were used to store beer but later on as a safe spot while bombs were dropped at Nuremberg at the WWII.

In the tour through the stone labyrinth, you will see the very first organic brewery in Germany and the first whiskey distillery of Nuremberg.

2. St. Lorenz church

This is surely iconic monument for Nuremberg, situated in the center of the old city. The size, the amount of details and historical value makes this place a must see.

The construction of the church started in the 1400s, but after extensive damage during the WW II was restored. There are many splendid altars, the architecture is amazing and if you have traveled around Germany you will see how this church differentiates from the rest. There are beautiful stained-glass windows as well and a lot of candles where you can leave you wish in writing.

3. WΓΆhrder See

This is an amazing place for a 30-min walk, with beautiful lake, pictures places and great restaurants with a nice view. We had cake and coffee after our walk around the lake and took some amazing pictures. It is peaceful, beautiful and relaxing. You can take a pedal boat and go around the lake, or you can simply walk around the whole lake (however it will be a long walk). In the summer, people come here for the beach and it is much more crowded.

4. Christmas market

Nuremberg is famous for its Christmas markets and that`s why I feel the need to include it as a 4th point, even though the holiday season already passed.

The Christmas market has just ended but their web page is already updated for the next one. The Christmas market in Nuremberg is quoted as the best one in whole Germany on many websites. I visited it, and I can say it is totally worth it. It is definitely beautiful and cozy and there are many things to try and do there.

5. Zeppelinfield

History has been written here. To be honest with you it is not entertaining, neither amusing to see it. However, the darkest history of Germany left a mark here and can be not only seen but also felt once you step in Zippelinfeld. Visiting this place brings so many thoughts of the power of brainwashing thousands and millions of people in the name of a cause that back in time seemed perfectly right.

6. Shopping in Nuremberg

Shopping in Nuremberg is surely enjoyable They have a long street full of the most famous brands but also some others that are not that familiar and offer different fashion and affordable prices.

Follow all these tips, and you will have a great time there, get a touch of Bavaria and have an amazing memorable trip from Nuremberg.

Let me know if any of you visited Nuremberg, did you like it and what else you saw there.

If you like my content, please like and share πŸ™‚

XXX

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Travel trends 2019 from Booking.com

Happy New Year! I wish you had an amazing holiday. I certainly did πŸ™‚

The travel industry is changing rapidly and knowing what to expect will help us organize the best trips on a good budget. What can we expect for the travel industry in 2019? Booking.com released prediction and I will share the most important ones with you.

1. Thoughtful travel

This year people will travel to places where they express interest in social, political, environmental matter. Travelers will choose to go to places where they know about and they will set up their focus on safety.

2. Focus on experience

Travelers were focused a lot on experience in 2018, but experience will be a keyword for 2019. Actually 60% of the travelers values more experiences than material goodies. Travelers seek places where they can feel like children again and release the stress.

3. More weekend trips

There is the old dilemma, shell we keep our holiday allotment and use it for long holidays or shell we split our days and have long weekends but often. This year, the prediction is that travelers will use more long weekends in order to release stress. They will focus on making the trips personal and tailored specially for them. The prediction is that people will not compromise the good quality even for short stays.

4. “Easy” is the new keyword

“Easy” is the new standard for travelling. Think of key-less doors, tickets loaded on your phone, paperless confirmations, no need of printing anything. We heard the fuzz about AI (artificial intelligence), Virtual reality (VI) and the travel industry will work exactly in this direction to make our trips exra special and unique.

The travelers are interested in tracking their luggage in real time on their mobile, having only one app satisfying all their needs and plans for their whole trip. One third of the travelers would like to see virtual personal travel agent in their home.

People prefer experience over buying material stuff and the demand for high quality travel push the travel industry to develop, to make our trips easier, to offer more exotic choices and a lot of technological updates.

Pepijn Rijvers, Chief Marketing Officer at Booking.com comments: β€œ2019 is set to be an exciting year for travel. With technological advancements, an ever more connected world and a continuously growing consumer appetite for the best travel experiences, we’re poised for groundbreaking developments, taking travel to unexplored heights. With a mission to empower people to experience the world, Booking.com learns and innovates continuously and we’ve never been more excited to be at the epicentre of thrilling industry.”

The full list of the trends released by Booking.com can be found here.

Thank you for visiting,
keep traveling and let me know if you like my comment πŸ™‚

Discover the best of Ghent: 7 reasons to visit during the winter season

The tiny streets, city center full of life, breathtaking cathedrals, so many things to do and of course the pictures’ canal views make Ghent unforgettable destination for me. I was not there for the Christmas market but if you want to visit it, it is opens until 6th of January.

It has over 400 historical buildings and it will leave you feeling like travel back in the 12th century. The city is quite big but only the city center has the unique spirit of medieval, mystical atmosphere. Here are my top 7 reasons to visit this beautiful place:

1. The best canal views

The amazing amazing canal view is only at the city center. You will spot it once you enter it. There are few bridges that will make your pictures glorious.

2. Amazing cosine and nightlife

The Flemish cuisine is excellent and there are few good places I can recommend you to visit. Bear in mind the prices are a bit higher than usual for this area of Europe and going for budget trip while having great time would be a challenge. All the nightlife, restaurants and bars are mostly in Patershol.

This is the most desired neighborhood, and once you lay a leg there you will find out why. All the houses are originally built in 1329, restored and reflecting the original look of the town. You will find your best options for restaurants exactly in this area. You can choose all different cuisines, however please give a try to the Flemish kitchen.

Breakfast: To be honest I either skipped it or went to the desserts and cake place that I mention below.

Lunch: Superette It is outside the city center, but totally worth it. The sandwiches and quiches there is to die for. The portions are big and made of organic food.

Dinner: Het Spijker. I can recommend only place that are in the city center since we did not want to drink and drive πŸ™‚ The atmosphere in the restaurants, food and service are fantastic.

Dessert and best cake I have ever tasted: Julie’s House
In a beautiful 16th century building you will enjoy the best coffee and cakes in town and I in my opinion the best cakes ever to be tasted. This place has huge variety of cakes and also a lot of cupcakes.

Drinks and clubbing: Woody`s

The beer lovers (like me) can visit De Dulle Griet. There you will find the finest selection possible of a Belgian beer in the city.

Good to know: Every Thursday here is a veggie day. Ghent promotes healthy lifestyle and focus on reduce meat. This is why you will find a lot of restaurants and brunch places that are veggie only.

2. Cathedrals

Right in the heart of the town is St. Bavo Cathedral is a stunning, Gothic style cathedral that took exactly 500 years to build. There you will find a lot of art pieces and rarest of them is The Adoration of the mystic lamb, painted in 1432 and it is considered the masterpiece of the medieval painting. It is made of 24 panels and one of them is missing since 1932.

3. Gravensteen

Build at the end of the 12th century it was a court, a prison and a cotton factory is one of the largest medieval castles in Europe. You can learn a lot about Flemish history and you can still see today live sword fights. The trip of the castle will take you around 45 minutes and on the top of the castle you will find stunning view over the whole town – best places for pictures of course.

Tickets: around 10 euro

4. Graffiti street, street art

Ghent is graffiti friendly city if you enjoy street art, you can go to the graffiti street and check out some amazing artwork. Pictures and more recommendations to be found here.

5. A night walk in Ghent

A night walk near the canals and crossing the bridges in Ghent is pretty amazing. The canals are fabulously lightened and you can see the beautiful reflection on the canals. It is great moment for pictures and a romantic walk.

7. Shopping in Ghent

There are so many amazing shops, main brands like Mango, Zara etc, but also local brands. It is totally worth to walk through the shopping street.

Additional activity: Stedelijk museum for contemporary art is pretty famous there, and for the people who would enjoy art. I suggest instead visiting museums, visit the St. Baafs Cathedral instead, where you will find fine art pieces and amazing stained-glass windows.

Where to stay:

I staid in the city center in a pretty amazing place booked via Booking.com – Hotel Onderbergen. I even gave my very first 10 review score, (coming from a person who travels a lot and works in Booking.com), it means I confidently recommend it to you all.

Wish you enjoy Ghent as much as I did and bring your best halves with you, because this is one of the most romantic places I have visited in Europe.

Let me know if you like my article and if you liked Ghent, and please subscribe if you like my content.
Xxx

Christmas Magic in Bruges: 7 things to do while visiting Bruges for the Christmas Market

Is it the most charming city in Europe? Why Hollywood movies are taken here? Is the Christmas market worth visiting?

Yes, because it is gorgeous, and of course yes!

Bruges is packed with tourists during the Christmas market, but this is only because the city is insanely beautiful. There is so much to see, and the Christmas lights in their authentic center make it simply glorious. Go and book Bruges right now, you will not regret it.

You will find bright lights, gluhwein, a lot of delicious snacks (like every other Christmas market :)), but what is making it special is the atmosphere of the city center itself.

What I can advice you to is first to follow the sightseeings, then the Christmas market and finish with gluhwein. What I did was: first a walking tour, then visited only the church of our lady and at the end – the Christmas market. I did not have more time for sightseeings unfortunately, however, if you have more time, you can follow the list below:

1. Church of our lady: Besides the size and the amazing atmoshere and details of the church, what you need to focus on is its altarpiece. The marvelous sculpture of the Madonna and the child is by Michel Angelo, made in 1504 in Italy and brought here. It was actually created for Sienna in Tuscany, and then it was purchased and brought to the Church of our lady. Definitely worth to see and after visiting Ghent and their cathedral and seeing this piece of art, you will have a pretty good idea of the art for the region.

2. Frietmuseum. The one and only museum dedicated to French fries. If you are up to bizarre museums, spend some time there and take some fries. You will also find out why french fries are called French and not Belgium.

Spoiler alert: They are originally coming from Belgium, where people used to eat small fish, caught in the river. In the 1750s the river froze, and they decided to cut potatoes in the same size and form of the little fish and fry it.

3. Shop in the old town of the city

The old town of Bruges is famous with their lace. If you start to wonder in the old town, you will come across shop after shop, and take a quick look at the lace pieces, they are usually very exquisite.

4. A brewery tour of De Halve Maan

If it gets too cold outside, and you did not drink too much gluhwein, you can escape the winter cold and take a tour of De Halve Maan. The whole tour will take around 45 min and you will be able to taste amazing blond beers which is always a good idea, just in case you are not going to mix it with the gluhwein :D.

In case you are tired of the Christmas lights and you want some cultural/educational/historical experience (which I was not in the mood for) you can visit also these places:

5. Choco-story: chocolate museum:

6. Stedelijk museum voor volkskunde – If you want to see the local history, please visit the folklore museum. There you will find history of the 19-20th century of Bruges and the local area.

7. Sint Janshospitaal.

It is 8 centuries old, and carrying a lot of history for pilgrims, nuns, monks and a lot more.

Places to stay:

I would suggest you to book the hotel where the movie “In Bruges” was taken, it is fabulous, perfect location, amazing view and not to mention – very romantic:

Hotel Relais Bourgondisch Cruyce, A Luxe Worldwide Hotel

It is a bit pricey, but for a short stay of 2 nights it would be doable. Book it in at least 3 months advance, because Bruges is always desired of many tourists.

Thanks a lot for visiting, and if you like my content, please like, share, comment or simply subscribe for the blog by adding your email.

xxx

Why do you need to visit Halkidiki Sithonia, Greece instead of the Greek islands

Who did not dream of vacation in Greece so far? Well if you haven`t, then you should check the pictures below first πŸ˜‰

The good news are that you can actually organize it on a budget, and you do not need to travel necessarily to one of their thousands of islands. You do not need to spend a fortune for a fly ticket (like 250 EUR) as well. You can actually make your trips in Greece on a budget with amazing quality where you will not need to compromise a thing.

Here I am with the promised article for Sithonia, Halkidki, Greece, after your voted on my Instagram @lostinpollyland to have 2 different artickles for the places I visited in Greece this summer. Let`s start with how you can reach Halkidiki.

Where is Sithonia and how can you go there?

Sithonia is in the middle of the Halkidiki peninsula and described as the most beautiful sleeve of the three.

All the Bulgarians go there by car, which takes approximately around 4 hours from Sofia. The roads in Greece are really good, and with a GPS it is pretty easy to find your way around.

If you are flying to Greece and for everyone who is not traveling from Bulgaria –
my flights to Greece were… 80 EUR! You have to fly to the nearest airport which is Thessaloniki. The airport is small and all the low coast companies fly to Thessaloniki. I used Ryanair from Eindhoven, Holland, and I was very happy with the price because it was July, in the beginning of the peak summer season. However at this moment, I would not recommend you to use Ryanair anymore, due to their numerous strikes, and flight issues. In any case, you can find much cheaper tickets to Thesaloniki than to the island for example. As usual, use skyscanner.

You will definitely need a car in Greece, or you will be stuck to only 1 place for the whole vacation. I recommend you to rent a car from here: link

However always check what your flight company offers you for car rentals.

Why Sithonia?

I visit two of the sleeves in Halkidiki, and I can say that they are both absolutely beautiful, but Sithonia was less crowded and showed many small, sheltered emerald beaches than Kassandra did. It has 92 beaches, which is pretty impressing. If you drive 2-3 km you will find a new beach and a new one and the next one. There is always a choice.

Beaches I visited in Sithonia and I recommend you to visit:

Lagomandra Beach

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Coviou beach

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Kalogria Beach

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These 3 are enough for 5 days staying there, because I am sure you will fall in love with them and you would like to visit them second and third time.

More Beaches in case you still would like to visit different places every day.

Orange beach;
Sarti beach;
Kriaritsi beach.

Here is a really good map of the beaches with great pictures and videos of all of them: Link

Which village shell I choose to book my hotel?

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Once you see the beaches, you can decide where do you want to stay, so you can be close to them. I staid in Neos Marmaras. It is amazing village with nightlife, restaurants, shops but also really close to all the beautiful beaches (by car).
I certainly recommend you the village and I can share with you which property I choose to stay in: Aria’s House Studios & Apartments.

What can you eat in Sithonia?

I would advice you to focus on the fish and vegetables when visiting Greece. If you live in Bulgaria, than the difference in the taste of veggies will not be that big, but if you live abroad, and go to Greece, even the tomatoes would seem that are “sprinkled with sugar” as we say it. πŸ˜€

The fish is fresh and absolutely amazing. Since I am a foodie person, and a I love grilled fish, I can conclude that in Halkidiki they prepaired the fish the best way with amazing spices.

Food I would suggest to try there:

Try octopous, since this is really a specialty in Sithonia. I am not that big fan of octopus, but worth to order it once.

Dorada, because it is amazing.


Eggplant salad

Squids
Zucchini

Restaurants I reccomend: Fish Tavern o Harris
Okyalos
A stunning view, and absoutely great fresh fish, I went there 2 times and I fully reccomend you to tat at least once. In this place, focus on the fish and not on pasta (with sea food etc).

The desserts are for free, usually are fruits or chocolate pancake.
For breakfast, I almost always took yogurt with fruits, so I can`t suggest too many things, but they have a pastry with cheese which remains me of Banica, so you can certainly take that.
Try their cookies shops. They have cookies per grams, so if you see such a place, stop and take some. They are amazing.

The service

I live in Holland, and customer service is not really a thing here, so when I went to Greece, I felt like I am in a 5 star resort all the time. They are really nice, positive people with an eye to details, taking care of you having the greatest possible holiday.

The weather

Halkidiki is sunny, and if you are like me and you like booking half an year/an year in advance, then you can pretty much be safe if you book in July, August and September.

If you like to check the weather, you can do it from here.

What to buy from Sithonia:

Of course, you can not miss the famous olive oil. Take o.3% extra vergin. If you are flying with Ryianair, then you do not have a lot of luggage and you can buy small bottles, specifically for taking on the plane for you or for a present.
Uzo, which I am not a fan of, however, I bought it for a present.
There many shops for beach wear, that are pretty amazing.

Thank you for reading, and if you like my content, please share on you Facebook and social media channels. πŸ™‚

XXX

Breathtaking Balkans: 6 reasons why you need to visit Pirin mountain

My last holiday started with flying to Sofia and going up the Bulgarian mountain to find one amazing hidden village in between the breathtaking Pirin mountain. I had a great experience there, and I would like to share it with you so you can plan a budget trip to Leshten, in Pirin mountain.

For everyone who is NOT Bulgarian: the prices there are really low + the flights are incredibly cheap, so it is definitely a budget saving destination.

I decided to go to Leshten, because I saw this amazing village in one Bulgarian movie a few years ago (The Foreigner). Since then I always wanted to go and visit it.

Where is Leshten located?

Leshten is not that easy to reach, but on the other hand, it is a very beautiful trip. You will be crossing Struma river, the famous ski resort Bansko and driving around beautiful mountains.

Why you definitely need to visit Pirin mountain, Leshten?

See for yourself how Leshten looks like, and then I will list my top reasons why you need to visit it πŸ™‚

1st. Amazing panoramic view
If you are a mountain lover, which I believe you are since you are reading this post, then Leshten will give you an amazing panoramic view and true satisfaction of your soul. The mountains are breathtaking and Leshten is right in the middle of it.

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2nd. Total relaxation
Leshten is a very calm village, small and quiet. You will go there if you need to relax and start your holiday with total relaxation. You will enjoy the beautiful views and nature while hearing only the sound of birds, bugs or animals. In the evening you can visit the restaurants, and there you will probably hear some music, but again it is all about focusing on yourself and the company you are with.

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3rd. Delicious food
The food in Bulgaria is in general great, especially for the meat lovers. However in Leshten, is pretty amazing, because all the vegetables are BIO, grown in someone`s garden ;). I would recommend trying something meaty (around 2-3 EUR), definitely aubergine, or any other salad you would like (they are around 1,70 EUR) and for a dessert yoghurt with jam (1,10 EUR). Please visit the place after the bridge at Leshten, across their only shop.

4th. Mineral healing water
If you go to Leshten, you can take advantage of the famous mineral water in the bacteriological resort nearby – Ogniyanovo. If you only would like to swim, you can do that at Leshten, but if you want to stay still in the water and let it heal your body, then you can take a short ride of few kilometers and go to Ognyanovo.

5th. Scenery village very pleasant for a walk.
The cobblestone streets of the village, together with the cosy small houses surrounded by green and mountains, makes it very scenic and lovely for a walk. Leshten will offer you a mountain hike, picking mushrooms and herbs in the mountain, and fishing. I would say that 2, maximum 3 days here are enough for you to feel recharged and energized.

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6th. The Bulgarian mountains are perfect for your trip on a budget!
Since we are focused on minimizing our budget and maximizing the quality of our trips, then Leshten and in general the Bulgarian mountains would be a great choice. First of all, as I already mentioned couple of times, the flights should be around 50-60 EUR with a low cost company as RyianAir, WizzAir and Transavia from Central Europe to Sofia. Furthermore, a night in a very nice hotel would be between 40-50 EUR for two people with Spa, and swimming pool and breakfast included.
The food is around 20 Eur for two people, which will include a main dish, veggies, and rakija.

I hope you find my recommendations helpful, and if yes, please subscribe for my blog.

Thank you for visiting,
xxx

Why do you need to go boating outside of Amsterdam! Boat trip in Vinkeveen

Amsterdam is stunning and one of the most vibrant cities I have ever visited (and lived in) and its scenery canals make it very attractive for boat trips. However, if you are not visiting it for first time, and you do not want to do that the touristic way, think twice before wasting a sunny, warm weekend on a boat in Amsterdam AGAIN.

Our tip: rent a boat in Vinkeveen πŸ˜‰

Where is Vinkeveen?

Vinkeveen is only half an hour away of Amsterdam, 25 km distance.

Why Vinkeveen?

Here is why you will have great experience there:

1. A boat trip in the nature

As much as I love Amsterdam, there is nothing like a relaxing boat ride in the nature. You will not hear crowd talking around you, and your eyes will be relaxed of the city view when instead you will be seeing lakes, a lot of water, peaceful beach houses, listening your own music (which you bring with you).

2. Prices in Amsterdam vs outside of Amsterdam

We all know that Amsterdam can be a bit pricey. The prices for a boat are not an exception. If you decide to rent a boat in Amsterdam, the prices are between 40 and 60 EUR per hour (deposit of 150 Eur as well) and the prices we found in Vinkeveen 18 Eur per hour for a boat suitable for 6 people, but we rented it for 4.

3. Busy water roads

You definitely need to be careful in Amsterdam! It is busy all year around, but when it comes to a sunny day… oh guys! Do not look right, left, up, or down. Look only straight and focus on avoiding crashes in another boat.

In Vinkeveen, you have lakes like a labyrinth, and you have plenty of space not to crash in anything πŸ˜‰ At the beginning of the ride, they will give you a map with all the lakes, so you can choose the road you like. And trust me there is enough space for everyone.

4. Picnic in the nature

When we went in Vinkeveen, we could stop on every small green island, and pull out the picnic blankets.

5. Much more privacy

If it is a sunny and warm day, then you would probably want to try to get some tan. And if you try boating in Amsterdam, you probably know that between you in the boat and the people sitting in cafeterias and restaurant, or simply walking around the city, there are just few meters distance. You would not feel that comfortable when putting your sun cream and laying in bikini, while nearly everyone around you is eating and drinking on the canals, fully dressed up.

Well in Vinkeveen, the whole vibe is as of a beach place, everyone around you is doing the same or (windsurfing). And you simply feel like you are on a beach vacation.

It is entirely different type of experience than in Amsterdam. You can ride in much more peaceful, green, full of islands and lakes place, surrounded by beach houses. You choose your music, uninterrupted of the music of the boats near you, celebrating bachelorette parties. You can lay down, get your white wine and food, make picnic on the boat or on the islands.

For everyone who would love to have fully relaxing day, and everyone who already tried boating in Amsterdam, and does not want to do it the touristic way, go to Vinkeveen, you can book it via: Jachthaven Motel Borger (this is not sponsored post) spend half day there and let me know if you enjoyed it as much as we did.

Thanks for visiting,

xxx