Author Archive

Pretty Ballerinas Make Girls Holidays To Menorca A Shoe-In

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Balearic Islands, Continents, Europe, Menorca, Shopping, Spain, Worldwide Vacation

Pretty Ballerinas

Pretty Ballerinas on sale at the factory outlet in Menorca

The very first thing I spy after landing in Menorca, and exiting those double-doors that spit you out of security and into your holiday destination, is a tall pink leaflet dispenser advertising Pretty Ballerinas shoes.

Of course like any self-respecting girl, the idea of shoe shopping while on holiday – possibly at a discount – has my interest piqued immediately.

But as I’m with a group  – consisting mainly of men – I decide to leave it until later to work out if my hunch is right that the high-end ballet pumps which are beloved of celebs must be manufactured on this very island

5 Places You Need To Visit In Portugal

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Continents, Europe, Opinion, Portugal, Worldwide Vacation

Portugal

When I think about it I realise I’ve actually been visiting Portugal for decades – from my first ever post-uni package holiday by the beach to a tour of upmarket boutique hotels in the countryside – and the destination has done nothing but grow on me over the years.

After 5 separate visits to the Iberian Peninsula’s West coast nation it’s safe to say I’ve fallen in love with the slow-paced rhythms and holiday vibe of its coastal resorts, I adore the sleepy rural idyll of the country’s interior and always relish the buzz of it’s picturesque cities.

These are the top 5 places I think you should seek out in Portugal  –  all of which I’m personally longing to revisit…

The Travel Tipping Point: Hotels Get Sweet With SuiteStory

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in The Travel Tipping Point

Mandeville

Suite at London’s Mandeville Hotel

In the information age there is a website for everything – and as travel becomes ever more mainstream, there’s a niche travel website for almost every eventuality too.

Yet until recently if you wanted to rent a luxury hotel suite as opposed to a regular room (think minimum 4 stars, but most likely 5) you still had to search the ‘regular’ hotel comparison sites and weed your way through their bog standard rooms to find the bigger, better suites that suit your actual needs.

That’s all changed with a new website specialising in hotel suites only – here’s why I think this is a great idea (and wish I’d thought of it)…

10 Cool Things To Do In Menorca Beyond The Beach

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Balearic Islands, Continents, Europe, Menorca, Spain

Menorca

Recognise these? Traditional Menorcan sandals are wardrobe staples around the world.

The island of Menorca is sleepier and more tranquil than its big hitting Balearic neighbours, with a reputation for impeccable unspoiled coastlines and eco tourism which is a world away from the hedonistic holidays and resorts often associated with neighbouring Ibiza and Majorca.

Best known for its beautiful white sandy beaches and Caribbean-worthy coves (known as calas in Spanish) Menorca is the chosen destination for many nature-loving families seeking a low key beach break within easy reach of the UK – yet the small island is packed with its own history and culture offering unique shopping, outdoor adventure and farm-to-table cuisine at every turn.

Here are my 10 favourite things to do in Menorca

Everything You Need To Know About The Everglades Alligator Tour

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Americas, Continents, Florida, Photo Journeys, USA, Worldwide Vacation

crocodile

See ya later alligator

At number 2 on my top 10 travel lessons to transform your trips is the importance of getting up close with nature and especially wildlife at any (respectful & safe) opportunity.

No matter how much I travel absolutely nothing reminds me of how lucky I am to see so much of the world and puts a huge smile on my face like meeting animals in their natural environment – and on my second ever visit to Florida I managed to finally fit in an Everglades Alligator Tour.

As well as being delighted I’d decided to take the tour while in the Sunshine State, I was even more happy with the resulting pictures – and memories.

Here’s what I think you need to know before your Everglades alligator tour

Flashback Friday: Guilty Pleasures Of Backpcking In Bali

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Asia, Bali, Continents

Candikuning-Market-Bedugul-Bali-Indonesia

Photo courtesy of kathmanduandbeyond.com

The Indonesian island of Bali was the first ‘exotic’ place to which I ever travelled, so it will always occupy a pretty special place in my memory – and it’s probably the only time I can truly say I’ve backpacked.

But when you’re in a destination for a while, the desire to explore every day and indulge in constant cultural pursuits can wane just slightly leaving you doing a few things that might raise the eyebrow of a serious traveller.

So, just for a bit of Friday fun, here are 5 things I enjoyed on holiday in Bali that the real traveller in me knows I probably shouldn’t have…

In Photos: Queen Of Fallas For A Day

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Continents, Europe, Photo Journeys, Spain, Valencia, Women of the world

Queen of Fallas for a day

That time I was the Queen of Fallas for a day – complete with traditional Valencian costume

This isn’t exactly a news flash, but we girls like getting dressed up.

And from the moment I arrived in Valencia I was determined to do one thing (besides eat paella): dress up in the famous Fallas festival costume, and become a Spanish Queen for the day.

And here’s another thing about girls; we already think we’re royalty, and we usually get what we want

The Rice Is Right: Why Everything You Know About Paella Is Probably Wrong

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Continents, Europe, Food, Opinion, Spain, Valencia, Worldwide Vacation

paella in valencia

A pretty sign for paella in Valencia 

It shouldn’t be bright yellow, or fluffy, it isn’t intended for dinner and it’s not supposed to be synonymous with seafood. In fact, technically it’s not even a Spanish dish

Even though the first food that springs to mind when you think of Spanish cuisine is probably paella, the dish has been bastardised beyond all recognition to a point where it’s about as authentic to the original as a McFlurry is to a gelato. 

So here are 5 fast facts you didn’t know about real Valencian paella – so you can call yourself a true paella perfectionist…

Hide Your face With Spanish Lace: The Story Of The Valencia Fan

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Continents, Europe, Photo Journeys, Spain, Valencia, Worldwide Vacation

Valencia fan

Valencia fan: There are some colourful fans on display in the city’s shop windows

Despite the Brits’ well-documented love affair with the Spanish coast, I never went on a family holiday to Spain as a child.

Yet one of my most treasured possessions as a little girl was a delicate handheld Spanish lace fan. 

So when I was given the opportunity to meet a traditional Valencia fan maker in the city which is packed with these ornate hand-made and hand-painted souvenirs, I was filled with a childhood sense of wonderment – and couldn’t wait to learn about the process of producing these gorgeous – and girlie – wearable works of art.