27/02/2018

Update: Where We've Been So Far


If you've been following us for a while you'd know that we've been travelling a fair bit recently and with us sharing about how we travel on a budget, we just wanted to do a very short recap of all the countries we have visited so far. We did most of these cities on our Interrail trip last summer, but nevertheless it's an accomplishment and an absolute dream to have travelled so much in the past 3 and a half years of being together.

Amsterdam, Netherlands - Berlin, Germany - Brussels, Belgium - Budapest, Hungary - Dublin, Ireland - Edinburgh, Scotland - Lisbon, Portugal - Ljubljana, Slovenia - Luxembourg City, Luxembourg - Marrakech, Morocco - Oslo, Norway - Paris, France - Prague, Czech Republic - Barcelona, Spain - Vienna, Austria - Zagreb, Croatia - Zurich, Switzerland


The finest of first world problems that we have is being able to keep track of where've we've been ourselves, never mind be able to blog about it for everyone else! But not so long ago, the most brilliant/dangerous app was discovered in Been - a place where you can tick off the countries you've been. It will tell you the percentage of the world and each continent you've visited, and highlight it on the world map for you. 

We've travelled to 7% of the world's countries and 31% of Europe. 

This illustration will always have us wanderlusting and scrolling through Skyscanner like no tomorrow!

Following this coming weekend we'll be able to tick Denmark off the list so check back next week to see what we get up to there! We've also got many more trips ahead of us including another Interrail trip this summer which you can read over on our travel wish list. Thinking about planning a holiday? Let us help you.

What percentage of the world have you seen?
Download the app and let us know in the comments below.

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24/02/2018

Restaurant: Koko - Ecclesall Road, Sheffield

Seared selection - 3pcs seared salmon nigiri, 3pcs seared tuna nigiri, 2pcs seared seabass nigiri, 2pcs seared tobiko salmon temari, 2pcs seared sesame schichimi tuna temari - £16
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22/02/2018

Valentine's Day: Kettle Black - Ecclesall Road, Sheffield


The connotations and images conjured up from the words "a Sheffield night out" probably don't resonate with the photos you're looking at here. As a final year student, the joys of the infamous Corp and Tank et al nights have long faded, and damn, some would say I've even matured in that respect. The city definitely needed an alternative and low and behold, here we are for the first time here at Kettle Black, an exclusive cocktail and wine bar on the golden mile of Ecclesall Road. 
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20/02/2018

Travel Tips: How We Travel On A Budget


We're only just coming to the end of the second month of the year, and in just less than two weeks from today we will be jetting off to our third country this year. How? I hear you ask. Well this is what we're going to share with you today.

We are not and have never claimed to be luxury travellers. Don't get me wrong, we love a good location and to be pampered but if you're a student or simply on that budget life and you want to travel as much as we do, you've got to make sacrifices and know when and where to go for the best prices.

Disclaimer: we are no experts in looking into cheap flights, nor are we saying this is the only way - this is simply how we've managed to do what we do.

Booking flights

Skycanner and Ryanair flash sales are what I live for. I don't know about you, but Skyscanner is so easy to navigate and is so clear to find the cheapest flights, based on month and flexible dates. I love the fact that you can enter the dates you are looking to go and have the choice to click "everywhere" which then gives you lists of cities and countries, starting from the cheapest.

Although we have a list of places to visit within the next few years, we love taking spontaneous trips to countries we haven't been to before. For example our trip to Lisbon was £77 return for both of us! Could I really miss out on that opportunity?

Booking in advance is also something that has played in our favour, I love to plan, so it helps that I find these deals before the prices rises.

Looking for accommodation

We tend to look for Airbnb's as they seem to add up to be cheaper than most hotels, unless you find some lucky ones in certain cities. When looking for somewhere to stay, we always weight out the price to its location. If you know most of the things you want to do and see is in the centre, then seeing if it's worth getting a more expensive hotel/Airbnb in the centre may weigh out from having to pay for public transport passes.

We've never been big fans of the thought of hostels and although we've expressed that they're not as bad as we thought, it's not something that naturally comes to mind as a couple.

We love a luxury hotel but as long as it's got the essentials and it's clean and is safe, we're not too fussed on what it looks like. At the end of the day, we don't plan on staying in the hotel for most of our trip anyway - we'll be out exploring and it's simply a place to crash.

Planning on what you're going to see and do

Other than finding inspiration from watching vlogs and reading other blogger's experiences, we love to use TripAdvisor. It has always been our go-to.

When researching on what we want to see and do, we usually check it against the city pass/card to see what if offers. As most of them include transport as well as free entry or reduced entry to their attractions, the pass usually ends up working out cheaper and gives you more options to visit things you didn't think you wanted to.

The most important - where to eat

As you know we pride ourselves in trying local foods when travelling and of course, finding the best cheap eats. Food is what most of our money gets spent on, so in order to eat more while on a budget, we have to do our research.

Again, TripAdvisor is our saviour as you can filter to cheap eats, ratings and how far it is from your current location. We also do our own research, find blog posts and take recommendations. Instagram is also a great source in finding locations and the prettiest spots.

Sometimes, simply roaming the streets of the city is the best way to find hidden gems.

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We hope this helps you or gives you more of an insight of how we manage to travel and do what we do. It does require a lot of planning, saving and some sacrifice to an extent, but it's all worth it if like us, your dream if to travel.

What are your travel secrets? Do you want to see more travel insights from us?
Let us know in the comments below.

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17/02/2018

Oslo: Best Places For Coffee


If you've been following us for long enough, you'd know that we love coffee almost as much as we love food. Here we are in Norway, the second highest coffee drinking nation in the world, so naturally we made it our quest to find Oslo's best cup of coffee. 
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15/02/2018

Oslo: The Culinary Deluxe Food Tour


Following on from our food tour outings in Lisbon, we took to Oslo and couldn't let the opportunity pass to do another. The Culinary Deluxe Food Tour, led by fantastic guide Jean-Pierre, led us to four different local spots, all with a fascinating history and tremendous food.
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13/02/2018

City Box Hotel in Oslo, Norway


If you say to someone that you'll be spending 3 nights in an Oslo hotel, there is a good chance that they'll remind you that it's going to be very expensive. More often than not that would be very true, but not necessarily... introducing Citybox Hotel!

Citybox is a modern economy hotel with low prices, and where we were lucky enough to spending our nights during our time in this wonderful city. They certainly don't cut back on location - the hotel was no more than a five minute walk to the Opera House, and they don't cut back on size - check out that room, but how they are able to offer low prices is by keeping running expenses down. 


They offer the standard simple and stylish room, bathroom, bed, chair, desk and very good WiFi. What more could you need when you're out exploring all day long and simply need a place to crash at?

Whilst Citybox staff are always available if needed, you do most of the work yourself in terms of booking, payment, check-in and check-out. When we first arrived we were greeted by these machines which handed us our room keys and information sheet. We scanned in and dropped the bags straight in our room. It couldn't be easier. The only time we needed a member of staff is when they kindly offered us a plug adaptor which we classically forgot to bring with us.


Whilst there isn't a breakfast option at Citybox, there is a delightful pizzeria and bakery right next door which they have teamed up with to offer guests discount at. There is also an entrance for guests which means you don't have to leave the hotel to access it. That is very handy when it's minus 10 outside! We enjoyed a brilliant croissant and coffee on our last day before catching our flight home. 

Downstairs is a large lounge area with plenty of seats, sofas, a TV and snacks and refreshment machines. Whilst it remains basic, it had a great style and comfort about it and we wish we had been able to spend more chill time down there.


Not only is Citybox in Oslo, but also in Bergen on the Southwestern side of Norway. We would return here in a heartbeat should we return to Norway, and highly recommend it to those of you looking for a way to survive the Norwegian economy whilst travelling.

Thank you so much to Citybox for a great stay!

Disclaimer: we were given two complimentary nights to City Box Oslo in exchange for an honest review.
However as always, all pictures and views are our own.

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10/02/2018

Oslo: Nord & Natt, Tøyen

Baked porcine mushroom and ginger butter toast

Our European foodie adventures continue! It is our first time in Scandinavia and after hearing about their 'small plate' dining culture, we were out to find and experience the very best of this. And boy, did we find it.
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08/02/2018

Restaurant: The Dysart Arms - Bunbury, Cheshire

Sunday roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, potatoes and vegetables - £14.95

It was a week before my, James' birthday and as we were jetting off to Oslo for the big day itself, we took the trip to Chester for the weekend. Starting things off with Afternoon Tea in Manchester on the Saturday, we spent the Sunday out in the Cheshire countryside to enjoy a proper pub lunch with the grandparents. 

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06/02/2018

Winter Break in Oslo, Norway


There's no better way to shake off the early year blues by travelling. It should definitely be a thing. We are blessed to be able to say our trip to Norway is our second of 2018, and we can't wait to share more and more adventures with you as the year progresses. 


We departed Manchester Airport on the Thursday evening, and after a longer than expected bus transfer from the airport to the city (always check how far the airport is to where you're actually going kids), we only had time to check into our hotel and plan our days here. But it was up early the next morning to start exploring!


Oslo Opera House is the home of theatre and ballet in Norway, and its stunning interior and exterior makes it one of the city's most famous landmarks. We braved the ice and walked the roof of this incredible building, which gives fantastic views across the river and city. You can do so by simply taking the stairs up from the side of the building. We've seen so many photos and videos of this prior to our visit, but with it being early morning and a pretty dangerous day to be doing such a thing, it was just us and a few others. 


The Opera House was sandwiched between two coffee stops which you can read about in our upcoming post of the best cup of coffee in Oslo, over on our food blog. Following that we took the short tram ride to Vigelandsparken, a picturesque sculpture park with the most intriguing statues.

We came to realise that Oslo seems to be a big fan of statues - not only were they here in the park but seemingly randomly dotted across the city. We would love to know the thinking behind some of these, but all we could do was our best to re-enact our favourites!


Despite it now being the middle of the afternoon, it -8 degrees. The lake in the park was completely frozen over, and the views from the top of the park were beautiful. We never got used to the ice beneath our feet, and we were proud of ourselves for getting to the second full day before falling. James jinxed himself by pointing out his pride just a few hours before taking the tumble. A rookie mistake. 


After long walks between our destinations for more coffee and a cracking grilled cheese sandwich, the day flew by and it was time to quickly charge up and be back out for dinner. Check that out over on the food blog! It was special.

The second day again had us out bright and early for breakfast, as we were embarking on a food tour at 1pm. Again, the food blog is where you need to be to hear all about that. We had good times and met great people who we spent the majority of our day with. 


Oslo is a very cool place, in more ways than one! It's extremely expensive compared to other parts of Europe that we've visited, but we were prepared and careful planning meant we knew how to work our days to get the most out of our time and money. 


The trip will be remembered for the beautiful but scary weather, awesome coffee, and the statue of a man simultaneously kicking three children. For the record, we do not condone this kind of behaviour!

Oslo, thank you! It's been a treat.

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03/02/2018

Afternoon Tea: Lounge on 12 - Spinningfields, Manchester


Our Lisbon posts have come to an end, but fear not, we are back in the not so sunny Manchester for something we haven't done in too long - have some Afternoon Tea!
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01/02/2018

Lisbon: Inside Lisbon Food & Wine Tour


We ended our Lisbon trip as we started it... on a food tour! We don't usually do more than one in a certain place, but we underestimated the Secret Food Tour in terms of its wine offering so booked this as well. But of course, we soon learnt that the Portuguese seem to drink it like water, but no complaints from us - we had two fantastic evenings out if it! 

It was intriguing to compare the two tours and we actually revisited two of the stops from a few days earlier, but as we tried different delicacies, we were very happy and we were knew we were in for some fantastic food and drink.

Starting at Rossio Square, our first stop was Cafe Beira Gare, which translated into English means "by the train." As you may guess, it was located next to the station that goes to nearby Sintra, which we were gutted we didn't have time to visit during our time in Lisbon. 

Here we tried cod fish cake bites which are normally enjoyed like this as a snack, or part of a main meal including rice. The green wine which was on draught... yes draught ladies and gentlemen, was superbly refreshing. 


Walking up towards Castelo de Sao George and taking a few public passenger lifts to avoid the hills, we arrived at our second destination, Espumantaria do Petisco. We yet again enjoyed some sparkling green wine but it was strangely a fact about the glasses we drank it from which was more memorable - they were shaped and moulded to the size of Marie Antoinette's breasts... weird. 
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