5 reasons to choose a staycation

Just about everybody looks forward to holidays, short breaks and even day trips. They punctuate our lives with fresh experiences, new sights and sounds, and enrich memories over the years.

You don’t always have to travel to far-flung, exotic-seeming lands to experience something new.  If you’re pondering your next great escape, and are concerned about the health implications of travelling abroad while the pandemic is still active, here are five good reasons to consider staying within our own borders.

Continue reading “5 reasons to choose a staycation”

Tips for booking a family ski holiday

With lockdown no doubt wiping out your spring and summer holiday plans you could be forgiven for being a tad miffed. Don’t get mad, however, get skiing!

Even if you have never skied before, there are plenty of great resorts across Europe that are accepting bookings for the winter season. Unlike spring and summer, ski resort tour providers have still been able to offer their full range of holidays as if Covid-19 hadn’t happened.

They are eager to do this again, and as skiing holidays could be a good bet going forward should we end up in lockdown in the future, now is a good time to start shopping around for your first or next skiing holiday.

So how do you choose the perfect ski resort for you? Continue reading “Tips for booking a family ski holiday”

Is Barry Island worth a visit?

At the start of March, Reuben celebrated his 5th birthday!  When we asked him what he wanted to do, his first response was to go to the forest and have a campfire and sleep in a tent!  It’s definitely out of season for camping, so we asked if there was anything else he wanted to do.  “Go to the beach” was his next response!  So on the Saturday after his birthday we decided to visit Barry Island in Wales. Continue reading “Is Barry Island worth a visit?”

Why a French Press is the best way to make coffee while vanning

There are a ton of advantages to van life – being able to explore the countryside while still maintaining many of the same comforts of home. Of course, this doesn’t mean that we don’t make a few small sacrifices to maintain our lifestyle. And if you’re anything like me, even a day full of adventure starts just a little better when you’ve got a piping hot cup of coffee in your hand. Continue reading “Why a French Press is the best way to make coffee while vanning”

Travel spending diary: 6 nights with kids in Portugal on a budget

Whenever we travel we have a budget to try and stick to.  This is money we have saved specifically for that trip, plus we can add on what we would have allowed for food shopping if we were at home that week.

As well as keeping a travel spending log to stick to our budget (or at least try to), I also like to see exactly where we are spending money and how much things cost.  It means we can see where we can cut costs on travel, if we need to, and also helps me predict how much similar trips will cost in the future.

Hopefully it’s also useful for others to see how much family trips cost or can cost.

When planning our recent six night stay in Portugal, I had a rough budget in mind of £1000.  This all depended on how much we could get our flights and accommodation for as it was half term so prices were, of course, higher than usual.

£1200 was around our maximum and for six nights in Portugal as a family of four with all travel, food, accomodation and entertainment, I think this was a more reasonable amount as a budget.  £300 per person for almost a week’s stay, food and transport.

Read on to discover how close to our ideal budget of £1000, but maximum £1200 we managed to get. Continue reading “Travel spending diary: 6 nights with kids in Portugal on a budget”

The most Instagrammable locations in Castelo Branco, Portugal

Castelo Branco in Portugal has a lot to offer.  There are many beautiful traditional Portuguese villages that are almost stuck in time.  The landscape is vast and we discovered lots of beautiful historic places to explore mixed with stunning mountains and the natural environment.  We spent a day in the centre of Castelo Branco, but also ventured to Penha Garcia and Monsanto to explore castle ruins, rock villages, fossil mountains and more.

If you already follow me on Instagram then you’ll have already seen my top Instagrammable locations in Castelo Branco from our recent trip, but here I will share some more photos that I haven’t put on Instagram yet.

Here are my favourite Instagram photos and locations from our recent Portugal travels. Continue reading “The most Instagrammable locations in Castelo Branco, Portugal”

The amazing rock village + castle of Monsanto, Portugal

I can now add another location to my list of most amazing places I’ve seen.  My favourite beach so far is Hemmick Beach in Cornwall and now my favourite village has to be Monsanto rock village in Castelo Branco, Portugal.

Whilst visiting my brother-in-law who is now resident in Portugal, we took a half day trip to Monsanto mountain after visiting the amazing nearby fossil mountains of Penha Garcia in the morning.

What a day!  Two really incredible places that can be visited in central Portugal in the same day.  A feast for the eyes!

In this blog post I’ll share what we discovered at Monsanto in Portugal and lots of our incredible travel photos of the rock village, boulder houses and castle!

Continue reading “The amazing rock village + castle of Monsanto, Portugal”

Visiting Penha Garcia fossil mountains in Portugal with kids

Last week we stayed in Portugal for one week in the district of Castelo Branco.  We were visiting my brother-in-law who has moved to an offgrid farm in Vale de Prazeres.  Not too far from the centre of Castelo Branco is an absolute gem of a place called Penha Garcia.

If you want a holiday with a difference then I’d recommend looking at villas in Portugal and getting off the beaten track to explore some of the incredible inland landscapes.  We discovered rugged mountains, stunning wild swimming spots and old worldly Portuguese villages.

The best part about visiting parts of Portugal beyond the well-known beaches and tourist hotspots was just how quiet it was.  We had many of these places to ourselves and rarely saw another person.

Read on to learn of the historic mountain houses, rocky fossil mountains and castle of Penha Garcia with lots of our travel photos! Continue reading “Visiting Penha Garcia fossil mountains in Portugal with kids”