Brighton has always been one of those places that I knew I would love even having never been there. Something do to with the mixture of city life, sea and CUTE shops I imagine. A little while ago, myself, Tom & his family made the 5 hour treck from Cardiff to Brighton for a weekend away. We got a perfect AirBnB right by the sea and spent the weekend eating & exploring.
To keep it concise, here are my 5 favourite things about Brighton:
Lydea’s – Brighton is the best place for vegan & veggie cafe’s and Lydea’s was my fave by far. It’s located in the North Laine and has a very relaxed, cafeteria feel to it. You grab a tray and pick what you want from behind the counter and we sat outside on a wooden picnic bench. The food was UNREAL & I would highly highly recommend going there.
The Sea – Coming from a seaside town & now living in a city, any time I get a waft of sea air and I can hear the waves, I immediately feel at home. The sea is a definite selling point for Brighton, as well as the glorious sunsets and it would definitely be a reason for me to move there.
Interior Shops – I could have spent an absolute fortune in these shops, so it’s a good job I was at the bottom of my student over-draft really. Around every corner, usually next to a DELISH bakery, there’s an amazing homeware shop!
Street Markets – Even though it’s such a big city, Brighton had such a community feel and I think part of this comes down to the street stalls and markets. On one of the streets, residents just put a table outside their front door and sell their old bits & bobs. It was so so fun rummaging through.
Dum Dum’s – I’ve never been a big fan of doughnuts but I had to try one from here. It did not disappoint. I had a caramel/fudgey one – a strong 10/10.
After a glorious, foodie & relaxed week in San Francisco, we hoped on bus down to the City of Stars. Once again, I could write a novel about how much I loved LA. Weirdly, my first impression was not great and I decided that I wanted to go straight back to San Francisco but I slowly got used to the sprawling size and the craziness of the city. Now, when I think back, the whole trip just seems magical.
Here are my top 5 favourite snippets of Los Angeles:
Venice Boardwalk: this was possibly the most diverse, eclectic area I’ve ever encountered. As we were out there doing Geography research, I was obviously looking at the area differently to how I would if I was just on holiday, but I was completely besotted with the Boardwalk. The palms and the skate park to the sunset and the street art, the whole stretch had such an awesome buzz to it.
The Griffith Observatory: we were conveniently in LA around the time La La Land came out so coming here was so surreal. I loved the film (& definitely did not watch it twice on the flight) so seeing the set and being able to see the Hollywood sign alongside such an EPIC view was amazing.
The People: I LOVE Californians. The people we met were so so friendly and couldn’t do enough for us. I know for some people (my boyfriend included), think the over-friendly, forward nature is irritating but I loved it!
Santa Monica beach: the ocean, the sand and the sun could never get boring. Our hostel was on 2nd Street so we were one block from the beach and right next to Santa Monica Pier. Waking up to 20+ degrees everyday and getting off the metro just in time to see the sunset was the perfect way to start and end everyday.
The Feeling: this sounds so bloody cliché and pathetic, but the whole feel of LA is just magical. There is a reason it’s called the City of Stars, because honestly, there’s just this feeling and buzz to LA that you can’t put into words. It’s what makes you look back on it and think “wow”. It is surreal.
In February I went on the absolute trip of a lifetime. My 2 best friends & I flew 11 hours to San Francisco for the week before embarking on a lengthy megabus journey down to sunny Los Angeles (which I’ll talk about in another post because MY GOD there is too much for one).
So here’s my top 5 snippets of San Francisco:
THE FOOD: so I expected the food in America to be good but it surpassed every expectation I had. On the first night, due to jet lag, we had an “hour” nap at 4pm which turned into us waking up at 9pm confused and delirious. By the time we made it out it was late so we wanted carbs & convenience. We found this incredible, all-American diner and ate all the fries, grilled cheese and milkshakes we could. UNREAL!
Sausalito: we took a bus trip across the Golden Gate Bridge to a small town called Sausalito. It was beautiful. There was a little harbour full of swishy yachts and cute little boat houses lining the water front. We had lunch in a lovely cafe looking over at San Francisco city and the bay and wandered around the cute shops too.
The Golden Gate Bridge: I mean, I could not write about San Francisco and not mention it’s identifying feature. No picture in the world will do it justice. The size and colour is amazing! We didn’t walk across but we drove over it a few times. I love that from every hill in the city (& there are A LOT) you can always see it peeking through.
Twin Peaks: we wanted to find a view point before we left the city and so many people recommended Twin Peaks. We ambled through the Castro, which was such a cool, relaxed area and up some steep streets all the way to the top of Twin Peaks. It was possibly the best view I have ever seen. We essentially had a 360 view of the city. The sun was setting to our left and we got up there at such a perfect time because all of the lights started coming on in the city. Market Street was lit up and looked so beautiful.
The Streets: this was the first time I had ever been to America so I guess this isn’t reflective of San Francisco itself, but one of my most memorable moments of the trip was stepping outside the hostel on the first day, early in the morning, and looking down the street. We arrived late at night so this was the first glimpse of the city I’d seen. I felt like I was in a film. Probably a mixture of buildings higher than I’d ever seen, the noises and the yellow taxi’s planted me right in the middle of Princess Diaries and it was AMAZING. I will never forget how it felt.
The best thing of all was that I got to spend it all with the 2 best gals I could wish for (puke). That’s all for now folks,