Lisbon is an absolute dream to explore and honestly I can not compare it to any other European capital. You could stay for weeks and it would still not be enough time to discover all its hidden secrets. As a start, here’s my ideas on 10 things you can’t miss on your first trip to Lisbon.
Have you ever been in a place or situation where there is just too much to take in? It feels as if every pore in your body is over saturated with stimuli. It’s just too much and you can feel your brain cutting out. The worst that has happened to me is when I think back to some great over-stimulating experience and find myself not remembering anything of it. The thought of it is shocking, but it happens. All the time.
This is where mindfulness comes in. I’ve always practiced some form of meditation throughout the years to help lessen anxiety and everyday stress. Truthfully, I haven’t been consistent in any of these practices. I usually end up disappointed in myself and looking for quick fixes. I found that practicing mindfulness and incorporating it into my daily life, I am calmer, more focused and experience things clearer. Mindfulness is described by a Perspectives on Psychological Science study as “the non-judgmental awareness of experiences in the present moment.”
The Jizo Statues of the Kanmangafuchi Abyss in Nikko. Such amazing nature too.
Cape Town has something for everyone; good food and wine, beautiful beaches, great shopping, museums and beautiful nature spots. When the weather is good most Cape Townians head outdoors to experience the best the city has to offer without spending a penny. Here’s some of the best outdoor activities for everyone in Cape Town that you can do for free!
Hike up Lion’s Head
This moderate hike up Cape Town’s iconic Lion’s Head Mountain is one of my favorite outdoor activities in the city. Start your hike early to avoid the heat in summer, or do the full moon hike at night. You’ll be rewarded with the best views of the bay, for free. For more details and tips on the hike, read my full post here.
Picnic on Signal Hill
If you’re not up for a hike, you can drive past Lion’s Head on to one of Cape Town’s other landmarks, Signal Hill. This is the perfect spot for a picnic and to watch the sun go down over Table Bay.
Córdoba was once the Roman and Moorish capital of Spain with its roots in the banks of the Guadalquivir River in Andalusia, Spain. It has a rich cultural and architectural heritage and in medieval times it was one of the few places Jews, Muslims, and Christians lived together peacefully. Yet, it’s somewhat overshadowed by its neighbors, Granada and Seville and left out of many Spanish itineraries. I enjoyed my stay in the city so much, I would recommend it to anyone traveling to Spain and the South. Here’s my 6 Top Things to do in Córdoba I compiled after my stay.
Córdoba is one of the jewels of Andalusia in Southern Spain. Like many of its sister cities in the area (Granada, Seville, Cadiz) it boasts one magnificent structure that places it on the must see list of Spanish cities. What is this magnificent structure I’m talking about? Well, it’s called the Mezquita-Cathedral – literally a Mosque-Cathedral.
The Shibuya area in Tokyo is a popular district for shopping, entertainment and nightlife. It’s located between the equally popular Shinjuku and Harajuku areas and a good central point to stay if you visit Tokyo. Most of the well-known shops and restaurants are located around Shibuya Station and you’ve probably seen pictures of the busy Shibuya Crossing or heard about Hachiko, the loyal dog’s statue. Here’s some of my recommendations on what to see and do in Shibuya.
Lion’s Head is part of the Table Mountain Range in Cape Town, South Africa. It’s iconic peak looms over the city and the ocean and a hike to its summit is popular with locals and tourists alike. The hike can take a steep 2-3 hours up and down and rewards with views around every corner.
If you’re traveling to South Africa, chances are good that you will visit Cape Town, South Africa’s mother city. This beautiful harbour city sits against the backdrop of Table Mountain, one of the new seven natural wonders of the world. The city is stacked with stuff to do, indoors and out doors. If this is your first time here, read my quick guide on how to spend a packed 24 hours in Cape Town.
Kanazawa is located in central Honshu in Japan’s Isikawa prefecture. With its unique location between mountains and sea, it provided a stronghold for the Maeda feuadal lords and the town developed its own cultural identity. Kanazawa focussed more on culture than industry and it was spared from the World War II bombings. There were many reasons I included Kanazawa in my itinerary (it’s like a little Kyoto) but the main reason was to see the beautiful Kenrokouen Garden.
Pula is one of the largest cities on the Istrian peninsula of Croatia. I was pleasantly surprised by the fast amount of Roman ruins and landmarks that I found during my stroll through the city. Pula has been known for its shipping industry and served as a Roman military outpost. The Roman arena has been preserved through the centuries and spectacular find in the heart of the city.
Madrid is one of those cities I constantly long to go back to. I can see myself living, working and eating here. I’m in love with the Spanish way of life, the ‘duende’ you’ll hear many of them speak of. Madrid’s city center is a great place to get an idea of what Madrid is about and it can easily be explored on foot. After you’ve explored the city center, you can head out into the other areas like El Rastro La Latina, Lavapiés etc. Here’s my best 10 things to see and do in the center.