Tag Archives: Christmas

Christmas at The Botanical Gardens, Birmingham

This evening I had the pleasure of joining a group of bloggers in Birmingham, to enjoy the Christmas Lights Trail at the city’s Botanical Gardens.
Located in Edgbaston, Birmingham, the Brum Bloggers event was an exciting opportunity to enjoy the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, in all of its festive glamour.
It may not be December yet, but visitors to the Botanical Gardens can enjoy following a well-lit path around the outdoor gardens, a perfect introduction to the festive season.

Visitors can also enjoy fairground rides along the way, including a Victorian carousel and steam boat swing. 
From glittering trees, decorated reindeer and colourful lights that dance to the appropriate and much-loved Christmas musical classics, visitors can explore the trail in around 45 minutes.

Along the way, there’s a selection of stalls providing mulled wine, hot chocolate and an array of other hot drinks to keep you warm during the winter weather. Hot food is also on sale, as well as other sweet treats, like smores.
Suitable for visitors of all age groups, the Christmas Lights Trail is Birmingham’s newest Christmas attraction. Tickets are currently on sale via the Botanical Gardens website, with prices starting from £10 for children above the age of 4, £16 per adult.

Celebrate the season at Winter Wonderland, London

2016-2017 opening dates: 18th November 2016 to 2nd January 2017.

Every year from November to January, Hyde Park in London transforms into a Winter Wonderland extravaganza open daily from 10am until 10pm (except Christmas day).

Continue reading Celebrate the season at Winter Wonderland, London

Tips for travelling during the festive season

I’ve lived in London for three years and it certainly has it ups and downs, with one of the benefits being the accessibility to a range of cities around the country. I love having the option to travel across the country in a few short hours to have new experiences and thankfully, the UK’s infrastructure is pretty supportive of this, however the season can completely determine just how successful my ventures will be.

When it comes to festive travel, I typically spend months organising my travel from London for the holiday season and this year is no different. Whilst I’ll be taking an international flight this year, here are my tops tips for travelling within the UK during the festive season.

Plan ahead

Give yourself as much time as possible to plan your journey. Popular routes tend to be on main city connections like Edinburgh, Birmingham and London, so check out your options and the best way for you to make the journey to your destination.

In some cities specific festivities usually take place, so be prepared that some routes may be more congested than usual.

Also, be sure to check out the connections on your route to help you to travel confidently and of course, give yourself enough time to make the connection.

Frankfurt Christmas market in Birmingham
Frankfurt Christmas market in Birmingham

Stay informed, stay in control

It’s not uncommon now for companies like TransPennine Express to keep you in the loop via their website and social media channels. Whether it’s bad weather or ‘leaves on the line’, staying informed can help you to stay calm and reassured for your trip.

Invest in noise-cancelling headphones

If your silence is golden then headphones are more than worth their weight in gold. Being relaxed and able to entertain yourself on the trip is invaluable. In the event of a delay, at least you can claim a little bit of personal head space.

Be flexible to save money

Tickets for journeys over the festive period usually go on sale a few months in advance, however certain routes may offer a reduced service. If you need to take an alternative route then be open to it. It could save you some cash – a bonus of being flexible.

Pack gifts with care

If you’re travelling with gifts, be mindful of anything that may be large, heavy or fragile. Wrap bottles and other breakable items in clothing to prevent your gift from being broken before it arrives under the tree. Even better, send your gift in advance to avoid having to travel with any bulky items that will only add to add potentially frustrating trip.

Many thanks to TransPennine Express, leading providers of rail services across the UK and part of First Group, for collaborating with me on this blog post.

A sightseeing guide to Lisbon, Portugal

As part of my winter travel in 2013 I opted to head to Lisbon, the capital of Portugal for a long weekend away with six members of the Nomadness Travel Tribe from around Europe.

With some of my companions travelling from Italy, Spain, Germany and France, we had chosen Lisbon for a group trip as it would be a new experience for us to meet and explore the city together. It proved to be a fun and eventful trip offering plenty to keep seven women busy and intrigued, wanting more from a city that never stops giving.

Continue reading A sightseeing guide to Lisbon, Portugal

Christmas in Lille with Eurostar

With the Christmas season in full swing, I wanted to make the most of an opportunity to do shopping and sightseeing on the readily accessible Eurostar service from London. Having previously visited Paris and Brussels courtesy of the reliable service, I wanted to try somewhere new, hence opting for Lille.

Located in northern France, Lille is 1 hour 20 minutes from London St. Pancras International with travel offered at very reasonable fares as low as £69 return. Continue reading Christmas in Lille with Eurostar

High and lows of planning a surprise getaway – with a difference!

Canal, Amsterdam
Panoramic view of canal

It’s been in the planning for months. A surprise getaway for my boyfriend to celebrate the end of his twenties and the start of officially hitting the big 3-0.

As somebody that loves to plan travel, I could think of no better way to surprise him than a short getaway with a difference – I wouldn’t be accompanying him. You see, on all of the trips that we have taken, we’ve always travelled as a couple or with a group. He has never had a lads’ holiday.

Now this was something that I thought about in great depth. Some suggested that it was unwise, sending a man away with a group of friends would be bound to end badly. On the other hand, I considered it important that he take this type of trip. It offers a new perspective on travel and I’ve always loved my girly getaways as they have a completely different dynamic. Why shouldn’t he have the same opportunity?
Continue reading High and lows of planning a surprise getaway – with a difference!

It may be Christmas, but are you in the spirit of goodwill?

The season of goodwill is upon us and with that comes a lot of parties, friends and family to visit and the organisation of getting from A to B and then to C to be arranged.

But, did you know:

  • 25% of people dislike seeing their families over Christmas
  • 15% hate attending parties
  • 91% will be travelling by car
  • 16% hate feeling that they need to be nice

Personally, I found those statistics a little surprising and as someone that will be travelling quite a bit this winter, a touch concerning – what happened to goodwill, merriment and festive cheer? Continue reading It may be Christmas, but are you in the spirit of goodwill?