Just what is a blog, anyhow?


“Are you employed?”

“Yes, I’m one-man shop. I’m a…blogger….” I state with uncertainty, knowing my answer would be met having familiarly blank expression. “I’m a travel blogger,” we add having bit more conviction.

“A….blogger….? That’s your job…?”

I understand the drill now. Her expression will either turn from confusion to intrigue as she starts asking around 400 concerns (none of which I mind answering btw). Or she’ll try and pretend she understands this is a legitimate task and certainly will breeze within the concern with an, “Oh…OK….” As she writes it straight down in the type and quickly progresses.

I’ve completed a lot of types recently because of the endless appointments you have when you have a baby. I have no concept why my work status is relevant when expecting but it keeps cropping up therefore’s got me thinking plenty by what a web log happens to be – I have been expected sufficient times recently!

It’s additionally got me thinking about exactly what my web log is.

In my experience, a blog is really personal. It’s a person’s slice of internet where you are able to share anything you like. It almost is like a person’s online house. You fill your property with pictures and trinkets, your favourite things, souvenirs, letters, postcards and notes which make you’re feeling good or recreate memories.

Opening up a web log the very first time is really a small like walking through someone’s front door. You’re stepping within their life, their personal room, their pleased, safe place.

I believe for this reason a lot of people love running a blog. You’re feeling like you’re producing one thing worthwhile the other that’s gonna last. It’s something others can enjoy but, eventually, you do it on your own. It’s an innovative socket and a method to keep your memories and ideas, similar to the present day form of scrapbooking.

But also for a lot of people, myself included, you stop seeing your blog as an on the web scrapbook when people start reading it. After which lots of people begin reading it and you have an inside freak-out at the thought of them peaking at your own personal scrapbook. After all, you’ve said some stupid material over time and now real genuine people are likely to read that! And that means you start changing your voice, changing your tone, running a blog about normal material additionally the type of stuff people are Googling. You compose listings and imitate other bloggers and also you view your pageviews increase or over or more. And also you feel proud and surprised that a lot of people are reading your blog… however it does not constantly feel quite right.

Things have actually changed and it’s alson’t about you any longer. it is about every thing surrounding you, not you.

And then I feel like I’m completely self absorbed wanting this amazing site to be exactly about me. Do people also care? But that’s just what began this in the first place to maybe they do…?

Based on Google (the fount of most knowledge), a weblog is “a frequently updated internet site or website, typically one run by an individual or small team, that’s written in a informal or conversational design.”

Therefore I think it is time and energy to start having a few more conversations with this weblog.

I’ve enjoyed each and every second of working on this web site. I’ve enjoyed the little team who’ve joined me personally and I love working together with them on amazing travel projects and campaigns. It’s all been plenty fun nonetheless it’s time to get personal and show whom we are really. We don’t would like to talk about our activities, i wish to speak about united states. My favourite blog sites are more about the individuals behind them just as much as just what those people are now doing.

So you’re planning to start seeing more personal posts here regarding Travel Hack. There’ll be much more peeks into my entire life at home and more vlogs that explain to you just what we’re actually as much as. Don’t stress, we’ll never lose our travel focus and we already have some exciting trips coming for 2017!

Yes, you’re going to be seeing more vlogs hers on Travel Hack and to kick things down I’m going to be doing Vlogmas!

For those of you who’ve never ever heard of Vlogmas, it is a YouTube thing in which vloggers create a movie each day within the run as much as Christmas. It begins on December 1st plus some vloggers take action until Christmas time and some can do it all month.

Elle and Char may joining me in the challenge doing our very first ever Vlogmas so discover their YouTube stations too. Elizabeth has done this all before so that it will undoubtedly be the woman 2nd 12 months doing vlogmas.

If you’d such as for instance a behind the scenes examine my entire life then contribute to my YouTube channel for a day-to-day video clip.

For me, Vlogmas is all about more than simply making a movie daily. It’s about challenging myself to master a fresh skill and extend myself artistically. I’ve been blogging for such a long time now plus it comes so obviously and easily if you ask me. This is certainly brilliant however it’s been a long time since I’ve pressed the boundaries and done such a thing actually brand new and creative.

We skip those beginning when I nervously hit ‘Publish’ and sat there striking ‘refresh’ to see how lots of people had been reading my articles. It took me personally hours to accomplish anything and I also pondered every process. Every thing was so brand new and scary but exciting and challenging. I loved this and I also want this feeling once more. And making videos undoubtedly offers me this feeling!

The second explanation I’m interesting to make videos is the memories. I like utilizing photography as a means of taking memories but movie is even better. You get all of the little details with videos like the sounds associated with birds early in the early morning, very first giggles, very first words if not the sizzle of a steak because it fries in a hot pan. Videos really bring memories to life and I’m already excited to help make videos merely to view them in a long time.

9 Reasons You Should Go To Murcia, Spain

The Costa Calida is one of the less popular tourist spots in Spain, this makes it the perfect destination to journey to obtain an authentic Spanish experience minus the typical crowds.

We went to explore the Murcia region, referred to as garden of Spain, to see what it’s to offer.

You can observe my 5-day Murcia travel itinerary right here.

I adored my amount of time in Murcia but I’ve discovered that many individuals know very little relating to this gorgeous area as they are unacquainted with all reasons they need to visit. Therefore here are simply 9 nine reasons why I Believe you should go to Murica…

1. Wine Tasting and Vineyards

The Spanish certain learn how to make a good wine or two! Murcia makes some incredible wines, along with vineyards aplenty within the Bullas area you’ll enjoy some wine education and sampling the most effective they need to provide. PLUS, it’s amazing affordable. The spot we visited was just €10-15 for the wine tasting AND tapas.


2. Unique Salon Experience

Archena actually normal thermal spa area with mineral rich waters. The Romans, being big fans of washing, built their own baths here 2000 years ago. Today, the thermal spa and resort is 19th century with modern refurbishment. Book a mud therapeutic massage for starters of the most extremely unique spa experiences of your life.


3. Flamingos and Mud Baths

In the summer months get and look for the white flamingoes (who knew they arrived in any such thing other than pink?!) at San Pedro del Pinatar sodium flats then head over to the mud bathrooms nearby. Smother yourself in mineral rich mud from the pond then bake on beach next door before finally rinsing down into the sea. Yep.


4. Shopping

Check out Murcia city for exemplary shopping choices (I am a big fan of Spanish developers) and delicious tapas. Wander through old quarter for sets from high designer boutiques, to neighborhood arts and crafts. It’s a hub for all you traditional favourites including Mango and Zara, plus I did spot and Sephora or two.


5. Quiet Coastline Walks and Secret Beaches

You could strike up the main beaches (playas) or perhaps you could look for the smaller coves (cala) for the more intimate and pretty beachside experience. In the event that weather isn’t sunbathing-worth such as for instance when I went in November, pop music on your own most readily useful walking shoes for coastline trek.

We enjoyed the walk along Cape Palos peninsular. There is also a lovely walk between Cala Cerrada and Calarreona.


6. Path Trip Through Pretty Landscape

Employ a automobile to essentially reach see Murcia and revel in the dramatic landscape and look for small picturesque villages. We enjoyed the Ricote Valley journey from Archena to Blanca saturated in dramatic rocky cliffs, lush lemon groves and sparkling turquoise river.


7. Tapas

I’m sure every region of Spain considers on their own well-known for their tapas. However, as Murcia’s first industry is agriculture it’s pretty well placed for serving up a number of the finest quality components.

The latest craze, or so I’ve been told, is for just what united states Brits call ‘daytime drinking’. Ladies liven up for lunchtime tapas and wine as restaurants spill from towards the numerous plazas in town.

And take it super casual like we did and head to industry to pick up your seafood or meat of preference and ask for it become prepared there during the tapas restaurant in corner.


8. Pilgrimage to Fifth Holy City

2017 markings the a Holy Year plus pilgrimage to Caravaca de la Cruz, the fifth holiest town after Rome, Jerusalem, Santiago de Compostela, and Camaleno. Whether you might be a spiritual person or not, you will probably find the festivities inside pretty town to be quite the knowledge.


9. Fewer tourists!

Unlike it’s wider understood neighbours, Murcia is not a tourist trap. It really is nevertheless favored by the Spanish so try it out for full on authentic experience.


Elizabeth visited Murcia utilizing the Travel Mob.

Discovering the Art of Meze with Lebanese meals in Manchester

In the event that you’ve been after the Travel Hack’s epic UNITED KINGDOM foodie adventure up to now, you’ll have learned about Korean meals in brand new Malden, Caribbean food in Bristol and Nepalese cuisine in York.

Another end on our quest to find unusual worldwide food styles ended up being Manchester, a city in charge of launching Vimto, Rolls-Royce and vegetarianism to your globe.

It’s a location known for starting trends, especially when it comes to food. Then when we heard about a definite emerging foodie trend, we trigger to discover the best Lebanese meals that Manchester is offering.


Bakchich provides a modern twist on old-fashioned Lebanese food, right in heart of Manchester’s university area. The decor is bright and light, with murals regarding wall depicting bygone times in Lebanon, tiled floors perfect for Instagramming and dishes that seem like they’re right from the pages of the fashionable cookbook.

The menu, developed by the restaurant’s Lebanese owners, is made to encourage social eating. In Lebanon, dishes comprise of loads of sharing dishes which can be put on a floor as they’re prepared – there’s some meals, therefore’s perfect for eating while chatting and catching up with friends.

At Bakchich, they’ve perfected the social side of mealtime, with big booths and long tables where the food are spread out and relocated around.

Their collection of meze, both hot and cold, is impressive, so we ordered as much as we possibly could – dips like hummus and baba ghanoush had been demonstrably planning to make the cut, but we attempted some uncommon alternatives too, like Lebanese pizza (topped with spicy sausage and grated halloumi) and Lebanese moussaka, which was a tasty plate of spiced and slow-baked aubergines and tomatoes.

The meals had been all exemplary – including the choice of sweets we tried – together with environment is indeed cool it is the right place to bring a small grouping of friends and settle in over more food than you’ll know very well what related to.

Lebanese food in Manchester with The Travel Hack

Lebanese food in Manchester

Lebanese food in Manchester

Lebanese meals in Manchester

Lebanese food in Manchester

Lebanese food in Manchester

Lebanese food in ManchesterLebanese meals in Manchester

Beirut Lebanese

This authentic middle-eastern restaurant sits regarding the edge of Manchester’s famous curry mile.

In which Bakchich was the slightly anglicised, hipster form of traditional Lebanese food, Beirut could be the genuine deal. The dining area is good, despite being truly a little uninspired. it is maybe not hip, however it’s perhaps not attempting to be; the drawcard here is what’s on your plate, perhaps not exactly how pretty it’ll look in your Instagram feed.

The menu is full of specialties from around the center East, including meals from Pakistan, Syria and Saudi Arabia as well as Lebanon. We decided on a selection of hot and cold meze, which we had been guaranteed ended up being the best way to order, as this is one way it is done in Lebanon.

As soon as the meals arrived it had been clear why this restaurant is indeed highly regarded in every the reviews we read, to arrive at quantity nine among all Manchester’s restaurants on TripAdvisor. The falafel had been crunchy externally and soft inside, the hummus full of garlicky chickpeas therefore the makdous, that will be child aubergines stuffed with walnuts and spices, had been the best mix of crunchy and soft, filled with loads of flavour.

Beirut Lebanese is not fashionable, as well as the service is not the friendliest, however, if you’re selecting real Lebanese food within the heart of Manchester, this restaurant should really be first on your own list.

Damas – the Art of Meze

I stored this 1 for last since it in fact is the best of the great deal.

We discovered Damas – the Art of Meze even as we were walking through Chorlton, a suburb in South Manchester. We spotted the brightly-coloured lanterns in the terrace first, then, when we realised the restaurant had been Lebanese, we immediately grabbed a table under a temperature lamp and proceeded to purchase a veritable feast.

The employees, who had been extremely friendly, plied united states with the most traditional meals and products from their menu, starting with a huge selection of hot and cold meze. The cook, who is in fact Syrian, explained that Lebanese and Syrian meals are extremely similar and, and Jordan, Turkey and a quantity of other nations in your community, share similar style of meals, known as Levantine cuisine.

Between courses Elle sipped Arak, a conventional Levantine alcohol which clear when offered, however when it is diluted with water (apparently the only way it may be consumed!) it turns a milky white. It tasted like aniseed, and had been still pretty strong even after being diluted with most of a bottle of water. When I ended up being expecting at that time, we were able to steer clear of the torture of Arak (although i did so have sip and it made my eyes water!) therefore I tried another old-fashioned drink called Aryan, which really is a form of salty yoghurt. It tasted since bad as it sounds.

Thankfully, that was the one thing regarding the menu that didn’t taste good.

Our feast of meze and mains was divine, but the highlight ended up being surely the Makloubeh, a normal specialty that I’m still wanting days later. It’s a rice meal, served with tender chunks of slow-cooked lamb, pine peanuts and sweet, sticky cashews. The whole lot was filled into a dish made from strips of tender aubergine, and ended up being offered with a good part of yoghurt to drizzle extraordinary. It absolutely was delicious, authentic and unlike such a thing I’ve tried before.

If you’re in Manchester, don’t skip Damas – the Art of Meze to sample the best of an up-and-coming food trend that’s about to take off within town and past.

Lebanese food in Manchester

Lebanese meals in ManchesterLebanese meals in ManchesterLebanese meals in Manchester

Lebanese food in ManchesterLebanese meals in ManchesterLebanese food in ManchesterLebanese food in ManchesterLebanese meals in Manchesterwhere-to-find-the-best-lebanese-food-in-manchester

All photos taken with the Huawei P9 Plus, co-engineered with Leica digital camera technology.

A Mini Guide To Birmingham

Birmingham is arguably perhaps one of the most underrated cities in the united kingdom. I visited the very first time this summer to keep at groundbreaking AC resort Birmingham with Marriott benefits (more about this further down!).

My very first response to the city was, ‘Why have actuallyn’t we been right here prior to!?’ Birmingham is truly cool rather than at all the way I imagined.

For too much time Birmingham has been weighed straight down because of it’s industrial past and instead unfortunate 1960s architectural alternatives. But beyond spaghetti junction and concrete monstrosities is an growing city full of culture, amazing food, great shopping, and a surprisingly amount of greenery and parks.

If you have yet to sample the delights of this 2nd biggest city into the UK, I’ve pulled together the perfect mini guide to get you started. We thought I’d create this mini guide to Birmingham after investing a few days within the town but We soon realised there’s way too much to see and do for one person to become an ‘expert’! So I enlisted assistance from our Travel Hack, Elizabeth, whom lives in Birmingham and some insights from regional bloggers in the region. We’ve got a great list of what to see and do in Birmingham to produce your perfect schedule for the fab town break.




How to get to Birmingham

As Birmingham is located in britain it is not that hard for there from virtually every where. I would suggest taking the train Birmingham as tickets are often actually affordable and the main train station is situated. You won’t have to be worried about parking while the city is tiny sufficient for around on foot or via public transport.

Where you should remain in Birmingham

Inside my trip to Birmingham I stayed during the AC resort Birmingham and I can’t recommend it sufficient. This is certainly affordable luxury plus it’s finest and it is exactly what we love here at The Travel Hack. it is inside perfect location since it’s walking distance through the stop and next towards the Mailbox, Birmingham’s upmarket shopping development beside the waterfront. There are lots of restaurants, pubs and cafes around right here too and, if you’re lucky, you’ll get yourself a lovely view over the canal below.

I’m also a Marriott Rewards member (FYI – absolve to join and well worth it for additional hotel perks!) therefore I had a free update up to a superior room that was huge and possessed a living room/sitting area, wifi, a lovely view associated with water below and that all-important belated discover!

Most useful eateries in Birmingham

“As a meals and drinks writer, the thing I’ve noticed during the last several years is really a growing, but quiet pride in city’s drinking and dining scene; it’s perhaps not arrogant or boastful, it’s extremely Birmingham and it’s anything from Michelin starred dining right through to award-winning road food and great curry. I think watching dudes like Original Patty Guys and Two Cats go from street meals and pop-ups to permanent and well respected venues suggests that the city is supporting home-grown talent.”

– Laura Creaven, Comprehensive toward Brum

Fine dining in Birmingham

Birmingham has the many Michelin-starred restaurants of any UK city outside of London. With five incredible restaurants to select from, you can sample the best of British cuisine in the city. Have a look at Adam’s, Purnell’s, Simpson’s, Turner’s and Carter’s of Moseley for stylish haute cuisine. We recommend the meal menu at Adams for some affordable luxury!

Street food in Birmingham

The road food scene in Birmingham is booming. Mind down to the arty Custard Factory area for Digbeth Dining Club any Friday evening. Every week they spotlight various pop-up and food cart offerings, from Thai, Indian and center Eastern to pancakes, toasties and waffles.


Curry King

While the birthplace associated with balti and home to a big South Asian community, Birmingham has become synonymous with curry. There exists a huge selection of spicy establishments to select from including old school no-frills restaurants such as Sheereen Kadah in Moseley, to fine dining spots including Itihaas inside jewelry Quarter.

For authentic vegetarian Indian food take to Jyotis, and for street food style curry delights decide to try Raja Monkey.

“Ever been to an Indian pub? No? get to 1 instantly. I adore the Hen & Chickens on Constitution Hill for alcohol plus some of the greatest tandoori chicken you’ve ever had. We always purchase the big mixed grill and constantly get there by having an empty stomach. This Will Be great value, amazing flavoured meals.”

– Elizabeth Sellers, Rosalilium.

Other cool eateries in Birmingham

It appears there exists a bit of a meals renaissance taking place in Birmingham with new restaurants opening each month!

Other suggestions include:

“Fiesta Del Asado in Edgbaston! I can hand on heart say its the very best steak restaurant I’ve ever gone to. The meat is incredible, solution is top quality and the chef behind it, Aktar Islam is one of Birmingham’s most useful.”

– Chloe Gorman, The Gastronomic Gorman

most useful places to drink in Birmingham


Along side it is burgeoning foodie scene there are always a collection of fab drinking spots in the town.

  • Lost and discovered for quirky decor, botanical beauty, amazing cocktails and one a little bit different
  • Jekyll and Hyde for lots more gin than you can possibly handle (and a Victorian gin parlour vibe as well)
  • Island Bar for tiki enjoyable.
  • Postoffice Vaults for proper pint, delicious ales and a huge range of international beers (at this time at 379)
  • Brewdog for art beers
  • The Rose Villa Tavern for eclectic pub experience
  • Jake’s Coffee Box for your morning cup Joe having a huge difference – this may be a restaurant run from the phone package!

“Imagine a spot where you can top up a card with money, then spend it on copious levels of tasters sizes of wine. Loki Wine offers that! Saved in the Great Western Arcade, Loki Wine offers a cosy atmosphere for casual wine tastings, cheese and Charcuterie platters to generally share and wine to get hold of. My notion of paradise.”

– Elizabeth Ireti, The Travel Woman


Quirky fun places to visit in Birmingham

Birmingham has lots of strange and wonderful tasks and places to go to in order to make your trip an enjoyable one. From the renowned chocolate factory toward largest Christmas marketplace outside Germany, this city has plenty to keep you occupied.



Cadbury World is really a chocoholics dream. Located in Bournville at Victorian chocolate factory you will end up packed up with a handful of chocolate pubs while you make your way around displays, games and also a mini ride. We have been big fans associated with the 4D movie experience. Book your slot early to prevent the crowds and don’t forget to use the Cadbury Afternoon Tea inside cafe afterwards. That’s when you can manage more chocolate!


For the spot of culture and social history check out the trunk to Backs, a nationwide Trust site featuring the last Victorian ‘back-to-back’ homes in Birmingham. You will be taken for a guided tour from 1870 to 1940 learning just how individuals lived in these small public courtyard homes.


Did you know that Birmingham has more canals than Venice? Definitely, not exactly therefore pretty but they’re working on it. You are able to catch a slow motorboat trip from Brindleyplace making each day. Or take a leisurely stroll across the canal to your Jewellery Quarter.

The Jewellery Quarter is Europe’s largest concentration of jewellery organizations. It creates around 40percent of UK’s jewelry and it is house towards world’s largest Assay Office hallmarking 12 million things a year. The jewelry Quarter has also shed a bit of it is commercial past to be quite the hipster spot of today’s world. Mind down for tasty coffee, cool pubs and maybe, if you’re feeling fancy browse the Pen Museum! Or not, just stick to the cocktails on St Paul’s Square rather (try the swanky St. Paul’s House bar).


Arts and Society in Birmingham

Library of Birmingham is the largest public library in European countries. Being a quite controversial little bit of architecture it is worth checking out at the very least the Instagram photos. Just take the lift around the most effective floor to enjoy the outdoor terrace and views over Birmingham.

For lots more tradition and activity you could try one of many town’s theatres for instance the Hippodrome, Rep or Alexandra. For movie buffs browse boutique Everyman Cinema or The Electrical – the UK’s earliest working cinema.

Green Birmingham

I really like just how (almost surprisingly) green the city is, when you look past the first impressions you get inside city centre. Nearly 600 parks, and over 8000 acres of park land! That’s more land dedicated to areas and open areas than just about any European town.

– Zoe Corkhill, Mama Geek

For A Few greenery head to Canon Hill Park, home to the MAC (Midlands Arts Centre), or the Edgbaston Reservoir.

Shopping in Birmingham


I really like that Birmingham has this kind of compact city centre (when compared with similar sized cities) it’s easy to walk around and contains all the good city centre places within easy reach.

– Erica Price, Only A Little Luxury for Me

Buying in Birmingham rocks ! because of the walkability associated with town. You may get around the main shopping ‘areas’ effortlessly. Hit up the Bullring for many of the mainstream shops as well as the award-winning Selfridges. Head to the fantastic Western Arcade for indie shops. And check out the Mailbox for luxury retail treatment – this is certainly additionally where the AC Birmingham resort is.

As Well As For something slightly various…

“i enjoy exactly what a treasure trove the city centre is for geocaching! Bit geeky but I love it. Helps you find new places too and explore the city in an original way. I’ve made myself look like a prat often, specially on Floozie in the Jacuzzi, but such fun!”

– Holly Hancocks, Little Pickle’s Mum

Birmingham has one thing for everybody, having growing foodie scene, cool pubs and shopping galore. We can’t wait to check out once more.

I teamed up with Marriott benefits to generate this post.

Profit a 32GB Leef iBridge 3 outside memory for iPhone

Here is the sort of competition reward you’ll only get truly excited about in the event that you’ve ever endured the message below.


You’ve just taken your phone away to snap the right picture. It’s either an ideal illumination or the perfect minute and you simply understand it is planning to result in the best photo ever. And your phone flashes with the caution that your memory is complete plus it can’t snap most things.

Which means you quickly begin scrolling during your photos and videos to see which you yourself can delete. You can find bad selfies you joyfully delete but have momentary dilemma when you begin to see the photos of the pet searching super sweet. Are you able to delete them? Maybe there are a few big files on the website or an app that uses up lots of memory? You desperately scroll for big video file you will get rid of.

OK, you’ve deleted loads of things which means you try to just take the photo again.

Noooo, there’s nevertheless not enough memory. Exactly why are these files saved in a 5 different places on your phone!?

OK, you’ve finally deleted sufficient to have a small area on your own phone to have a photo.

You stock up the camera and appear up…only to note that you’ve missed as soon as therefore the photo opportunity has gone. Also to make things worse, you didn’t actually get the opportunity to see or enjoy that amazing picture opportunity because you had been too busy with your mind hidden inside phone attempting to delete everything.

If it’s ever been after this you I’d prefer to introduce you to the leef iBRIDGE 3. It is an iOS storage space solution that’s small enough to take everywhere with you. It is possible to expand the storage ability in your iPhone, iPad, and iPod without worrying all about deleting memories once again.

Today’s competition reward could be the leef iBRIDGE 3 32GB. You could keep it on your own or give it to someone else as great Christmas time present for that friend who’s constantly running away from storage area.



Enter via the application below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  • Entrants must enter by subscribing to The Travel Hack’s once a week newsletter
  • The competition closes on November 26th 2016
  • The winner would be selected randomly making use of Rafflecopter
  • The champion will soon be notified via e-mail within twenty four hours associated with the competition closing and certainly will have 1 week to react having valid postal address before a fresh winner is selected
  • The champion agrees due to their title to be used in almost any publicity product
  • Any individual information associated with the champion or some other entrants is supposed to be used entirely in accordance with present British data protection legislation and can never be disclosed up to a third celebration without entrant’s prior consent

Travel Journal: My Five Days in Murcia, Spain

Murcia, a charming and underrated area of Spain. If you’re looking for a concealed treasure, someplace from the overcrowded tourist-y aspects of Spain, this could be the destination available.

Over 5 times I’d a whistle-stop trip of Murcia where i discovered that it is a diverse area for sunlight and coastline holidays, food and wine, culture and shopping, and plenty of stunning scenery.


Day 1

It was a really very early flight from Birmingham to Alicante but fortunately with Birmingham Overseas being truly a regional airport it truly ended up beingn’t a long time a journey. Whenever we arrived in Spain we made the one hour journey down seriously to the Mar Menor coastline of Murcia.



There we examined white flamingoes in the Salinas y Arenales de San Pedro del Pinatar, a protected wetlands area with sodium flats. It absolutely was pretty quiet at this time of the year but I can imagine it’s super popular within the summer months. There’s even an area in which site visitors can take a mud shower inside mineral rich ponds!




For lunch we tested the Miramar restaurant at Cabo de Palos, a harbour area that does not actually host any accommodations as such so it features a charming local vibe. Our meal ended up being delicious and perhaps my favourite for the trip.

We attempted old-fashioned Murcian salad, a mixture of tomatoes, tuna, olives, egg and coconut oil. We additionally ate grilled cheese, seafood, fresh bread and another regional speciality including slow prepared fish and rice. It was rich, creamy, fresh and unlike anything else I’d tried before.


After this kind of epic 3 hour lunch we took a walk along the cliffs once the sun set on the horizon making for a few instead special Instagram moments.

We happened to be here on a rather blustery time therefore I ended up being covered up within my ‘England weather’ clothes of wooly cap and scarf once we battled the high winds for round the cliffs. However it had been totally beneficial. By the end of our walk we discovered a striking eighteenth century lighthouse looking rather majestic against the red and purple sunset sky.

That evening we drove to Cartegena to keep the Hotel NH Cartegena, prepared for our walking tour the very next day.

Time 2

We were up bright and early for a guided hiking trip around Cartegena, a historically significant city by having a natural harbour. It is often home to Phoenicians, Romans, Moors and Byzantine civilisations throughout the last 2000 years.


The Roman Theatre was fascinating. It was only discovered since recently as 1988 therefore took until 2008 until it was fully exposed being an attraction.

We additionally visited the Roman baths as well as watched as archeologists proceeded their excavation work.


After Having A short walk enjoying some of the Baroque architecture we hopped back in the automobile and headed down the coastline towards beach-side resort of Águilas.


We checked into Hotel Puerto Juan Montiel, one of only three accommodations in this town, before venturing out to join our tapas tour.




The tapas tour took united states to three different tapas restaurant within the city where we sampled a variety of delicacies from octopus tentacle to tuna tartare, homemade potato crisps to pork lollipops, Russian salad to croquettes.


It was epic as you would expect, completing having rather stunning view on the town and towards the hills that flank this area of the coast.


Whilst the sun ended up being establishing we went for the next quick drive round the coastline to see the iron connection built by the British within the nineteenth century.


Plus we found an amazing viewpoint and some darling ‘calas’, we bet they might be lovely for summertime sunning.

Time 3

walking-on-the-rocksThe sunlight ended up being out first thing in the morning therefore I popped right down to the beach outside of the hotel for the mild walk across the sand and stones. I enjoy mornings by the sea, one thing extremely healing about that quietness.


I completed my time on hotel having a fast session within the spa on the top flooring, soaking in the hot spa whilst gazing away on hills.

Next we drove on city of Murcia (there’s the city and region of the same title) where we embarked on an different epic tapas meal at one of the better stops in town, Los Angeles Tapa.



We opted for a bar side spot so we could have pleasure in many people watching whilst sampling plate upon full bowl of delicious food. This was some instead high-end fare once we attempted low-temperature egg, Russian salad on pretzels, and some of the most extremely succulent pork medallions I’ve ever really tried. All washed down with delicious wines.



Even as we were losing daylight we dragged ourselves away from the food and tripped for a walking tour of this old quarter of Murcia. The town features some glorious Baroque architecture amongst its numerous squares. Think quintessential European city with restaurants flowing out on to plazas as locals catch up over coffee, wine and tapas. It has a casual vibe that has been very welcoming.


As we were visiting the ‘Casino’ which is not really a casino in a gambling feeling but more of a people club with insanely gorgeous interior decorating, we had been called out become showcased on real time Spanish tv.

A reporter and cameraman appeared and for five full minutes we were broadcast out across the regional Information. It was so surreal.


For the next end we drove about 50 % an hour or so out to Archena to remain at Balneario de Archena, a spa hotel situated above Roman thermal baths. We quickly turned into our swimmers and received a guided tour regarding the thermal complex which included a sneak peek at some Roman ruins beneath the 19th century complex. My favourite component was the natural sauna space, it is heated by the thermal waters without any intervention!


We had been quick promptly so we didn’t have long to take pleasure from the present day spa circuit area which was next door to the hotel complete with its various vapor rooms, floatation pool, igloo, rapids and hot tubs. But we made many of it, staying before lights were switched off on us!

Day 4

We began the afternoon bright and very early having mud therapy down within the basement of hotel. The whole flooring was integrated the nineteenth century detailed with tiled spaces and corridor. The air smells moderately sulphuric together with water is entirely through the normal thermal waters.

I happened to be led as a small tiled cubicle, told to strip down seriously to my swim bottoms and lay half naked on a bed of hot mud. The mud specialist takes big lumps of mud and packs them around my shoulders, sides, foot and hands.   She then covered me personally up like a cocoon and left me personally to bake for 20 minutes.

Whenever my time was up I became unwrapped, told to stand in corner associated with the cubicle and hosed down, half naked using the curtain open. Shyness was not a choice!



After breakfast at the hotel we hopped back into the vehicle and took a drive through the Ricote Valley, one thing our guide called ‘Little Palestine’. A wonderful landscape of dramatic hills, lush valley plus river meandering through scenery.



We stopped within the little village of Ojos, a picture perfect destination which had a quiet and serene atmosphere.


Finally we found Blanca, a little town by having a great viewpoint bridge searching over the lush valley.


We headed back through valley and on to Bullas, another local city and house up to a wine region. First we examined the Wine Museum and learned all about the wine provenance for the area, after which we headed out to a regional vineyard, Bodega Balcona, for a short talk about their wine and some sampling.


The atmosphere had been hot, the colours of  the vineyard had been vibrant with autumn colours. It certainly ended up being some of those special moments of leisure once we sipped on delicious burgandy or merlot wine. I specially liked the Casa del a Cruz variety.

After a quick late lunch take a look at Entretempos we drove on to Caravaca de la Cruz, the fifth holist city in Catholicism plus one of my fave prevents.


We immediately met with your neighborhood guide and strolled up to the church regarding hill, Basilica-Shrine of La Vera Cruz, to take the sunset and see this many religious of places.

I found it many calming and another of the loveliest of churches I’ve checked out in European countries. I don’t think you have to be associated with the faith to appreciate the environment, architecture and importance of a religious place such as this.


We took another walk around the old section of this town which, once again, was charming and relaxing to be in. We had been offered a further guided tour associated with Wine Horses Museum which celebrates the initial horse event town celebrates annually and brings the complete community together.

Finally to round of the full-on day we relaxed our way via an epic meal at El Arco restaurant including program after length of delicious Spanish meals.


We invested the night time at guest household, Hospederia Almunia, that we must say had such inviting staff and felt like a home from your home. A pleasant base where to explore this essential town.

Day 5

Our final time in Murcia didn’t have a set itinerary as such so we had been in a position to take it slow. We started the afternoon by having a mild walk to a different an element of the old town experience the morning view once the mist lifted throughout the city.



Our final end had been back Murcia city again for the next walk around the old quarter during daylight hours.



We wound up in a local grocery store, eyeing up rows upon rows of fruits, vegetables, seafood and meat.


In the same way we were making I spotted a small club into the corner for the market. There were a few stools with residents consuming tapas, consuming alcohol and wine, and chucking their dirty napkins on to the floor.

We asked our guide about the bar and as quickly as she explained your locals had been having their market purchases prepared up during the club in front of them … well, we had to test it down!

We hotfooted it up towards the seafood countertop and I accidentally ordered probably the most expensive prawns on their stall (oops!). With bags of prawns, octopus and sardines we nabbed top spot at the club to put our order for beer (wine for me personally) and viewed as he cooked up our seafood.

It had been fantastically fresh and casual to consume in this way. My prawns were, thankfully, the sweetest I’ve ever tasted. The atmosphere was jovial. And we left feeling we completed our trip for a high having truly authentic Spanish experience.



Murcia actually diverse region with scenery and tradition to rival the greater amount of popular tourist destinations of Spain. I might cheerfully return, employ a car, and explore the place in more detail.

If you would like log off the tourist trail Murcia is an perfect Spanish experience for you personally. It’s just 2 hours from the UK and there is one thing for all, nevertheless you most readily useful always travel.

If you prefer this post have a look at my weekly vlog from trip right here:

Profit a boutique hotel stick with Doris & Dicky

Today’s xmas competition reward is something you’re all likely to love and is a £100 voucher to pay with Doris & Dicky. In the event that you’ve never heard about Doris & Dicky before, i’d like to introduce you…


Doris & Dicky offer the most useful in affordable luxury accommodations with spending plan boutiques all over the world. Frequently, in the event that you add ‘boutique’ to your description of a resort you can include an additional £150 a night to price but Doris & Dicky have managed to seek out the most effective boutique accommodations for about £100 per night.

Yes, this is affordable luxury at its finest and that’s why we love Doris & Dicky only at The Travel Hack.

Their resort hotels are worldwide and so are handpicked and that means you understand you’re getting somewhere nice.

If this feels like your kind of reward (let’s be honest, why wouldn’t it is!?) then enter via the app below. Again, you might keep this award yourself or present it to somebody else for an awesome xmas present.

Now the only real problem is determining which of their gorgeous resorts you intend to stay at! Always check them out here.


a Rafflecopter giveaway


  • Entrants must enter by subscribing to your Travel Hack’s once a week publication
  • The competition closes on November 25th 2016
  • The champion is chosen randomly utilizing Rafflecopter
  • The champion is likely to be notified via e-mail within a day of the competition closing and can have seven days to respond by having a legitimate postal address before a fresh champion are chosen
  • The winner agrees due to their name to be utilized in every publicity product
  • Any individual information associated with the champion or any other entrants are used solely in accordance with present British data security legislation and can never be disclosed up to a 3rd celebration without entrant’s prior permission

Win a set of KEEN Fremont wintertime boots


Today’s prize within our Christmas competition is really a pair of Fremont wintertime boots from KEEN. They’re cosy, hot and fashionable therefore they’re ideal for winter and great if you’re visiting any cold destinations. They are offered in either three tints, whiskey, black colored or cookie dough and they’re worth £139.99.

I have a couple of them myself and I’ve barely taken them down since I got them!




To enter your competition, simply enter through the software below. You’ll be immediately subscribed to the weekly newsletter by entering.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  • Entrants must enter by subscribing on Travel Hack’s once a week newsletter
  • Your competition closes on November 24rd 2016
  • The champion are selected randomly utilizing Rafflecopter
  • The winner will undoubtedly be notified via email within 24 hours of this competition closing and can have 1 week to react having legitimate postal target before a fresh champion will likely be selected
  • The winner agrees due to their name to be utilized in any promotion material
  • Any personal data relating to the winner or other entrants may be used entirely in accordance with current British data protection legislation and can not be disclosed up to a third party minus the entrant’s prior consent

Easy and affordable personalised xmas gifts

Xmas may be the most wonderful time of the 12 months however it can be many stressful – especially when you have a lot of presents buying for as significant those who curently have EVERY THING!

Increase this a busy routine, a decent budget, and each high-street being therefore manically busy that you’d do anything else but go shopping for Christmas time presents.

Congratulations fear, I have a remedy for your xmas gift suggestions in 2010 while don’t need certainly to invest a lot of money, you don’t require loads of some time you don’t must spend a fortune. You don’t also want to get from the PJs or leave the sofa. So grab your laptop computer and pour your self a cuppa as it’s time and energy to get crafty making your very own.

Everybody likes personalised Christmas gift ideas however a lot the time they take way too long to get you to should have started in January. Or they actually cost more in order to make your self than it would be buying one new (hand-knitted caps, I’m talking to you!)

I’ve come up with ideas for personalised, crafty, quick, effortless AND affordable Christmas time gift suggestions. You guys know already how much i really like using Photobox for my travel photos printed so I’ve teamed with them once more of these crafty (and easy) Christmas presents.


The picture guide

Photo books will be the modern day form of a photograph album. I do believe it is best to pick a theme for your photo guide like a getaway you took this season or perhaps a wedding day out.

I’ve stared a tradition of earning a annual picture book for my mum filled up with photos of George (and now Joseph too). it is beautiful to look through it to discover him growing and changing. We additionally make mini photo books from special holiday breaks.

Travel Hack tip: choosing the pictures for the photo book is what uses up your entire time here. Keep your pictures organised over summer and winter so that you have actually albums willing to upload. If you are super organised you may also upload and organise them inside Photobox account. Organization goals right there.

Photobox have several different photo publications you start with little ones from £6 and really expert looking ones too. Their picture journals would be a really good way to report a holiday too. I’ve been utilising the unique version photo book using the 12 months cut fully out on the front side.

The cup

Now this is the quickest, simplest and cheapest of these all. They make great stocking fillers, presents from children, key Santas or gift suggestions for all individuals who simply have something small.

The straightforward picture mugs are £5 on Photobox!

 Simple and affordable personalised Christmas time gift suggestions

Photo blocks

Another quick, effortless and affordable option. The good benefit of picture obstructs is the fact that you could simply purchase one or perhaps you could obtain a load of them to produce a nice function. If you’re reasoning long haul, you could purchase one every year to produce a new tradition and increase a group.

Travel Hack tip: I like utilising the square picture blocks for Instagram pictures.

Photo obstructs currently begin from £9.

effortless and affordable personalised Christmas time gifts 


Get the favourite photo printed onto canvas for personalised interior decor.

I prefer these retro canvas prints for one thing a bit different.

 Simple and affordable personalised Christmas time gift ideas



This is a good one for teens whom currently cover their bed room walls in posters. Why don’t you make something personalised? For other areas you should purchase a frame too.

Posters begin with £4. 

Easy and affordable personalised Christmas time gifts

Win a Christmas Eve hamper from Great and Small Clothing and Elf for Christmas

Win a Christmas Eve Hamper in the Travel HackThis could be the cutest award for anyone with children. It’s from two brands I truly love, Great and Small Clothing and Elf for Christmas time.

Great and Small Clothing make gorgeous PJs for the entire family members. I don’t know if matching household PJs have been a ‘thing’ or it’s just one thing We noticed since I have had my small dudes but I adore them. Sam, George and I have actually their Bear Hugs PJs and they’re fab.

Elf for xmas is a magical elf that brings the spirit of xmas alive and encourages good behaviour too – champion winner!

These two fabulous brands have actually joined together to help make the perfect xmas Eve hamper available plus baby.

As though xmas Eve is not magical sufficient already, this hamper can certainly make it a lot more special.

Win a Christmas Eve hamper



xmas Eve hamperelf

The hamper contains:

2 x Elf for xmas PJs from Great and Small Clothing  (in every size)

1 x Elf for xmas doll either boy or girl

1 x Elf’s Adventures Book

2 x Luxury Hot chocolate spoons

I will picture it already – xmas Eve at the fire watching festive films in your Chirstmas jammies. The Christmas lights twinkling and you’d be consuming hot chocolates with marshmallows at the top. Mine is having healthy glug of Bailey’s but you might want to keep that far from little elves under 18!

Just this thought it making me actually excited!

If you’d want to win this prize – either yourself or being an very early Christmas time gift for another person – you simply need to enter through the app below.

All the best!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  • Entrants must enter by subscribing to your Travel Hack’s once a week newsletter
  • The competition closes on November 23rd 2016
  • The winner are going to be opted for at random making use of Rafflecopter
  • The champion is likely to be notified via e-mail within 24 hours of this competition closing and can have 7 days to react by having a legitimate postal address before a new champion will soon be chosen
  • The champion agrees for his or her name to be utilized in just about any promotion material
  • Any individual data concerning the winner or virtually any entrants will be utilized entirely in conformity with present British data security legislation and certainly will never be disclosed to a third celebration without the entrant’s prior permission