My 20’s Travel Buckelist

 

Some people say that your 20’s is the best time to travel. You may not have a lot of money but you have time and you’re willing to take risks that you know you won’t take when you’re older. I know that I want my 20’s to be full of adventures and new experiences, so here’s my bucketlist!

My 20's travel Bucketlist

1.Volunteer abroad

For some reason, the idea of volunteering in a different country with a totally different culture appeals a lot to me and from  I’ve read it’s on of the cheapest ways to travel! (yayy!) I would really like to volunteer in Madagascar with IVHQ on their Marine Conservation program (can you think of a better way of spending your days than by diving in an exotic location? I think it’s pretty hard to top that…) or on their Surf Outreach program in South Africa.  But I think I would probably go to Argentina first since they have an Healthcare related program and that’s more related to what I’m studying at uni (points for Buenos Aires still!)

My 20's travel Bucketlist

2. Visit the Nordic Countries

Although I know I would be more than blessed if I could visit any Nordic Country, I must admit that Norway holds a special place in my heart; there’s something magical about that  country ( or maybe is just the high probability of seeing the Northern lights ha). Anyway, I really love the culture of the nordics in general, so next to Norway would be Iceland, the land of Fire and Ice, and of course I can’t forget about visiting Santa in the Lapland and staying on those amazing glass igloos…

My 20's travel Bucketlist

3. Party in Berlin

Berlin seems the perfect escape for younger people: you can discover museums and art galleries by day and party by night! Apparently, Berlin has one of the best nightlifes Europe has to offer, from low-key live music to underground clubs, you can find anything to suit you!

My 20's travel Bucketlist

4. Discover Japan

Every since I was little I had a fascination about Japan and China (I blame it on Mulan and the animes…). But I think the main reason why Japan caught my eye was because of it’s contrast: it’s a country of the old and the new and no one can stay indifferent to its culture. From the lively Tokyo to the old Kyoto, the paradisiac beaches of Okinawa to the world recognized mountains of Niseko, Japan has a little bit of everything. Plus, the most beautiful cherry blossoms are in Japan!

My 20's travel Bucketlist

5. South Africa Surf Trip

To be honest, this is probably the item that is higher on my bucketlist but also the one that is harder to accomplish… I’ll explain: since I saw this “Gap year” program in South Africa that I knew I wanted to take it. After all, what can be better than spending 3 months surfing the best beaches of SA and Mozambique, without having to worry about accommodation, equipment or lessons, and still have the chance of getting certified at the end of the trip? Right? I know, but unfortunately this comes with a cost: yep, it’s expensive, but these programs only occur from Sep-Dec and Jan-Apr which means that you have to skip school/work or take a gap year (which probably won’t happen very soon…). But who knows, maybe I’ll take a year off when I finish uni and I can take finally this trip! But until then, I’ll continue saving $$$.

My 20's travel Bucketlist

6. Go on a Backpacking Adventure

Backpacking is probably the ultimate trip to take in your 20’s and it’s easy to see why: you’re young, you’re broke and you want to see and travel the more you can, so what do you do? You go Backpacking! Whether is Interrailing, backpacking Southeast Asia (and going to the Full Moon Party just because) or venturing through South America (read: Machu Pichu, Patagonia and Carnaval) what really matters is the experience you’re having and all the new people you’re meeting!

My 20's Travel Bucketlist

7. Take a Solo Trip

After all I’ve read about the advantages of taking a solo trip I had to add it to my bucketlist.  Don’t get me wrong, I love traveling with my friends and family but there’s a certain freedom about taking a trip by yourself that I really want to experience. After all, you decide what you want to see, to do, what and where you want to eat and don’t have to worry about schedules because you travel at your own pace. That sounds pretty convincing to me! Even if it’s just to go to Lisbon!

S__5701.jpg8. Spend a week (or two) at a Surf Camp

I actually have a few ideas for this one. I know that I would really like to spend a few days in Ericeira since it’s one of the main surfing spots in all Europe and it has always fascinated me. Plus, it has the advantage of not having to worry about international flights since I already live in Portugal! However, if I decide to go abroad then I would really like to go to Morocco or Sri Lanka. They both have amazing cultures and don’t look as overcrowded as other destinations, such as Bali or Hawaii.

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9. Spend a year in Australia

Okay, I know I’m setting the bar to high on this one, but it’s ok to dream, right? Right?

But seriously, Australia has so much to offer that I think just one visit wouldn’t cover half of what I’d like to see in this country! That’s why I’d like to spend a year there (either studying or working) and experience a different lifestyle and reverse seasons (no jokes). Just thinking that you can go to the beach on Christmas Day while all your friends are complaining about the rain it’s too good to be truth!

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10. Study abroad

I’ve probably shouldn’t say this but one of the main reasons why I was excited about uni was because of the possibility of studying abroad (please don’t judge me). I would love to study in Japan, Australia or Norway but I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to go to the first 2 because I think my university only covers Erasmus programs in Europe, so I have all my hopes on Norway!

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11. Go on a Snow Trip

I know I’ve talked before about the mountains of Niseko and the Nordic countries but the truth is that I’m a terrible skier… But I’m willing to change that! In fact, I would love to learn how to snowboard (I admit I don’t like skiing that much…). That’s why I would like to spend a week on the slopes learning and while I’m there enjoy all the environment that the ski resort brings to you ( après ski *cough, cough*).

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12. Tomorrowland

Just because it’s the biggest festival of electronic music and if you’re not going in your 20’s when are you going?

 

So, this is my bucketlist for the next years. I know it’s a little bit ambitious but I really want to reach my 30’s with that feeling of relief of someone who has done everything she had to do and knows won’t be doing in the next few years (I know you get what I’m saying…). But, what about you? Is there something you specially want to do in your 20’s? Or a place you really want to visit in your lifetime?

Leave your comments down below! I would love to know your answer xx

 

 

Note: This post is about the places I want to visit/things I want to do so the photos I’ve used were not taken by me.

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Busy day in Palermo Cathedral, tuk-tuks, carriages, Sicily

What to visit in Palermo for one day

Palermo is a beautiful city in middle of the Mediterranean and the largest city in Sicily. Despite being an italian city, it is very different from what the rest of Italy has to offer: their light, but slightly orange buildings (due the material they were constructed with) and the abundance of palm trees in certain historic places, make Palermo an unique mixture between its mediterranean and italian roots.

If you want to discovery a little bit more about this city, but have no idea where to start, then scroll bellow to see its main highlights.

 

Façade of Teatro Massimo in Palermo

Teatro Massimo in Palermo seen from the side

Teatro Massimo Vittorio Emanuele

Start your day in Palermo with a visit to this amazing opera house. Dedicated to the king Vittorio Emanuele II, it’s one of the biggest opera houses in all Europe and it was the set for the final scenes of The Godfather  Part III. While you’re in town, make sure you assist to a show here and understand for yourself why the opera is renowned for its acoustics.

 

Via Maqueada, Palermo

Via Maqueada

Located on the historic centre of Palermo, this streets connects the Massimo’s Theatre to another emblematic place of the city: Piazza Vigliena, also known as Quattro Canti. While you are there, make sure to buy a few souvenirs since this street offers a great variety of products: from mugs to t-shirts, you can find almost any souvenir type. My tip is to buy Limoncello- Italy’s most famous liquor and a typical product of both the south of Italy and Sicily.

 

I Quattro Canti, Piazza Vigliena

Detail of a statue in I Quattro Canti, Piazza Vigliena

I Quattro Canti

Officially known as Piazza Vigliena, this baroque style square was one of my favorite spots in Palermo. It may be “just” a square, but there’s definitely something special about it. The majestic and near-identical four buildings that give the name to this place, and its incredible architecture, almost makes you forget that you are in middle of the crossing between the two main streets of Palermo (Via Maqueda and Corso Vittorio Emanuele). Besides, what makes this square so unique is the symbolism behind each facade: each of the four fountains have statues that represent the four seasons, the four Spanish Kings of Sicily and the patronesses of Palermo.

 

Fontana Pretoria at Piazza della Vergogna in Palermo, Sicily

Fontana Pretoria

Just a few meters away of Piazza Vigliena there’s Piazza Pretoria. The square is also known as Piazza della Vergogna or, in English, the square of Shame, due to the nudity that the statues in the fountain display.

 

 

Martorana, Palermo, Sicily

Martorana seen from below, Palermo, Sicily

Martorana

Considered by many as Palermo’s most beautiful church, Martorana is definitely a unique place. Despite looking very simple on the outside and almost going unnoticed, is its interior that make Martorana absolutely stunning and totally different from what you would expect. If you get the chance, try frutta di Martorana, a sweet formerly moulded by the nuns of this church and one of Palermo’s most distinctive foodstuffs.

 

 

Entrance of Cappella Palatina

Palazzo dei Normanni seen from below, Palermo, Sicily

Capella Palatina and Palazzo dei Normanni

If you love art and history, don’t forget to include this stunning chapel and palace in your visit to Palermo. In many aspects similar to Martorana, specially in the size and the use of the golden to decorate it’s walls, Capella Palatina is the place to go if you want to see a rich architecture.

 

Detail of the Palermo Cathedral's dome

Busy day in Palermo Cathedral, tuk-tuks, carriages, Sicily

Cattedrale di Palermo

Lastly, but certainly not leastly, the majestic Palermo Cathedral. Completed in the 18th century , it is mainly characterized by the presence of different styles, due to a long history of additions and alterations, similar to what happened to many monuments in Palermo.

 

After seeing all of these places, if you still have time, you can always include a visit to the Catacombe dei Cappuccini, one of the world’s most famous catacombs, and to Monreale’s church.

Have you ever been to Palermo? Do you have any suggestions to complete this list? Leave your comments down below!

 

 

 

Fountain at Piazza De Ferrari

What to see in Genoa in 24h

Detail of Galeone Neptune at Porto Antico di Genova

Typical Italian Car

 

Genoa is one of the largest cities around the Mediterranean and also one of the most important seaports in this area. Despite being one of Italy’s major economical centers, La Superba, as it is known, is also  very rich in history and culture. After all, it is home to a few UNESCO World Heritage Sites, like Via Garibaldi and Plazzo dei Rolli.

If you are visiting this city for a short period of time and want to know the main attractions, or if you are just curious about what the city has to offer, than scroll bellow to see its main landmarks.

 

Entrance of Acquario di Genova in Porto Antico

Acquario di Genova and Porto Antico

One of the largest in Europe, the Aquarium of Genoa, located in the Old Harbor (Porto Antico, in Italian), is home to 500+ species and welcomes more than 1.2 million visitors. If you love marine life, you will love this place. However, be prepared to spend a good amount of time here, as there is so much to see!

 

Il Bigo at Porto Antico

Il Bigo

Built to celebrate the fourth centenary of the Discovery of America, Bigo is an amazing structure that offers a 360 degree view on Porto Antico and its surroundings. It’s also located on the Old Harbor, right next to the Aquarium.

 

Cattedrale di San Lorenzo

Situated near the city centre, this cathedral was built with a gothic style and completed in the 17th century. It is dedicated to Saint Lawrence, to whom it owns the name, and it is the seat of the Archbishop of Genoa.

 

Facade of Palazzo Ducale

Palazzo Ducale

Former residence of the Doges of Genoa, this palace is now a museum and receives temporary art exhibitions. It’s located in the city centre, very closely to Piazza de Ferrari.

 

Fountain at Piazza De Ferrari

Piazza de Ferrari

Named after the fountain (above), this piazza is the most emblematic square of Genoa. Surrounding it, there are many important buildings such as offices and headquarters of several companies, making this square the business center of Genoa.

 

Road of Via XX Settembre

Via XX Settembre

This street is one of the most noticeable in the city center. Here you can find stores like H&M, Caledonia; Swarovski, Vodafone… So, if you feel like doing a little bit of shopping, go here!

 

Porta Soprana

Porta Soprana and Casa di Cristoforo Colombo

This majestic gate was once the east entrance to Genoa for those who came by the old roman road. On it´s right side, there’s a small stone house that is considered by many as the Columbus House (although the interior is reconstructed) and some beautiful cloisters.

 

Via Garibaldi

This street is definitely a must-see in Genoa. Here you can find most of Genoa’s best known palaces, such as Palazzo Rosso and Palazzo Bianco, but also other amazing, but less known palaces, like Palazzo Nicolosio Lomellino (above), making a total of 13 palaces considered World Heritage sites.

 

Panoramic view of Genoa at Spianata Castelletto

Spianatta Castelletto

Just a few meters away from Via Garibaldi, there’s this belvedere that offers the perfect panoramic view of the city of Genoa. Unfortunately, I went there at midday because I was really short on time, but if you have the chance,try to go there at the sunset (or sunrise, if you are an early bird!), as everything looks more beautiful during the “Golden hour”.

 

Palazzo Reale seen from below

Palazzo Reale

Lastly, but not leastly, the Palazzo dei Rolli. Situated in Via Balbi, this palace, also an UNESCO World Heritage Site, was originally built for the Balbi family. However, in 1823, the palace was sold to the Royal House of Savoy, and from there the palace started to be known as the Royal Palace. Currently, it is used as a museum and its rooms are decorated with objects that once belonged to the Savoy family.

 

Now that you know the main highlights of Genoa, you are ready to visit the city! I know this “itinerary” is a bit long, but if you have a full day (and a fast pace!) you can definitely squeeze all of these places in less than 24h.

If you have ever been to Genoa and have more ideas about what places one should visit, than leave your opinion down below. I would love to know your suggestions!

 

 

View of the boats on the Old Harbor in Marseille

One-day itinerary: Marseille (Budget friendly)

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Vieux-Port

      Marseille is beautiful city in Côte d’Azur and the second largest city in France. Although being know mainly by its beautiful coastline and the amazing contrast between the blue of the Mediterranean and the beige of the coast, Marseille does not disappoint when it comes to monuments and things to do. Below is a suggested itinerary that covers the highlight of this city and it’s perfect if you are short on time.
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Fisherman in Vieux Port

Vieux Port 

Start your day in this beautiful harbour which is also the birthplace of Marseille. Considered by many a focal point for tourists it’s definitely a great place for understanding the true essence of city and observing bot the locals and one of the most iconic monuments of Marseille that appears so many times on the postcards of Marseille: Notre-Dame de La Garde.

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La Canabiére

La Canabière

Imagine Oxford Street but with a more relaxed vibe and then you’ll see one of Marseilles’ most emblematic streets: La Canabière. The amazing view of the Old Harbor at the end of the street makes this place great for shopping even for people who don’t like to shop!

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Panoramic view of Marseille from Notre-Dame de La Garde

view of one of the most emblematic places of Marseille (Notre Dame de La Garde) on a sunny day

Notre-Dame de La Garde

Notre Dame de La Garde

This catholic basilica is considered one of the most important landmarks of Marseille. Visible from afar, this basilica is located at the highest natural elevation of the French city, making it the perfect place to have a panoramic view of the city and also to spot the Chateau d’If and the îles du Frioul.

Hard Rock Cafe in Marseille on a sunny day

Marseilles’ Hard Rock Cafe

Hard Rock Cafe

This is not exactly a landmark of Marseille but it’s so close to the old harbor that it’s almost impossible not to stop there. Besides, it’s on a a small square making it a very pleasant place to have lunch!

Visiting Marseille on a budget and having a picnic at the Old Harbour

Picnic at the Old Harbor in Marseille

Lunch

Now, for those of you that are visiting Marseille on a budget here’s my tip for you: bring some sandwiches from your hotel (or accommodation) and try to have a picnic right beside the Port. (Trust me, you won’t be the one doing it). You may not try bouillabaisse (the best ones are expensive) but you will be on the front row to see the boats arriving and leaving the harbor – what can be better than that? And while you are having your picnic, try not get too amused with the boats and check out the french men (and women!) with their bouquets of flowers that they will be offering to who knows who…

Tourist train in Marseille right next to the Old Harbor

Touristic Train

Pro tip:

If you are really short on time and you are worried about how much time it will take to get from one place to another (and how much $$) try to take the touristic train. You can catch right next to the Vieux Port and it will give you an amazing view of the city in a crazy short amount of time. I chose to do the Circuit 1 which allowed me to visit Le Vieux-Port, les Forts, le Vallon des Auffes, la Corniche, le Vallon d’Oriol and Notre-Dame de La Garde. You can choose between two circuits, costing around 6-8€ each.

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The famous soaps of Marseille

Souvenirs

If you are worried about what to take from Marseille as a souvenir, why don’t you take one of the Marseilles most iconic symbols: soaps! You can buy them next to the harbor or in souvenir shop (when I went there, there was a small store on a street on the left side of the Canabière-if you are facing the harbor backwards- that sold a variety of soaps for a great price )

Notre Dame de La Garde seen from the Old Harbor

That is my suggested itinerary for Marseille. It may seem like there is not much to do but trust me, there is (at least if you take the touristic train, which I highly recommend). It will give plenty of time not only to explore the city but also to enjoy the vibe of it and admire its beautiful coastline, which to be honest, was my favorite part of this trip.

What do you think? Have you ever been to Marseille? If so, is there anything else you would add to this itinerary? Leave you’re comments down below, I would love to hear your opinion!