Brunch at Norbert – London

Last weekend my mother was in town, and as you always do when a relative comes to visit London, you go for brunch. Most 20 or 30 something Londoners’ weekend life revolves around Friday evening drinks at the pub, Saturday morning brunches, Sunday roasts and ‘today I will eat healthy’ Mondays. Basically, brunch is an institution in the Big Smoke and a lot of places do it really well so competition is high.

We decided to go back to Noak in Brockley which we very much enjoyed! Upon arrival, we discovered that 1) the restaurant had been repainted and 2) the name had been changed to Norbert. Wait, what?

Norbert Brockley London

Noak was no more and had been replaced by its British brother Norbert. We headed in anyway as we were hungry and a bit curious. The interior remains very similar to what Noak’s used to look like. The waiters were with us straight away and efficient to take our orders and serve food, which in full honesty is where Noak wasn’t great. The previous team was on the slower and more disorganised side, so there have definitely been improvements there!

The Nordic-inspired breakfast platters seemed to have left with Noak but Norbert brunch menu looked promising, British classics made with local products.

We ordered coffees which were good! (not always the case in London)

Norbert coffee

My mum went for the vegetarian full-English served with halloumi and avocados. It was tasty and filling, just what a full-English breakfast is supposed to do!

Norbert vegetarian full-english

Both Andrew and I went for the poached eggs served on sourdough bread with wild mushrooms and Bayonne ham. It was really good! I was genuinely impressed, the products were flavoursome and fresh.

Norbert wild mushrooms eggs

What struck me too is how good the plates looked. You can tell that the people in the kitchen have some sort of gastro/fine-dining experience. So I googled them and discovered that the head chef has worked at Michelin starred The Galvin Brothers at La Chapelle. Not bad at all!

So for those of you who knew Noak and have yet to try Norbert, I can confirm that it is a bit of an upgrade! Noak had that lovely little local coffee eatery atmosphere, Norbert offers a more elevated restaurant-like experience but still at a decent (London) price.

Norbert restaurant indoor London

My only regret? The cinnamon rolls are gone! People of Norbert, if you read this post, please, please, please consider bringing the cinnamon rolls back!

A great unplanned (re)discovery and a new potential favourite local brunch spot!

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

Advertisements

Dinner at Sparrow – London

Following our brunch at Sparrow, today I am finally sharing my dinner experience at Sparrow!

A little background story for this post; Andrew and I have had dinner at Sparrow before, very shortly after they opened. However, we had the ‘excellent’ idea of going the day after we came back from Japan, thinking it would be a great way to fight the jet-lag. We did stay awake the entire time, but it felt like a very vague dream the morning after, so our first impression was a little too blurry for me to share it on the blog. I knew I had eaten well but that was pretty much it.

So using the excuse of Mummy Imaginarium’s visit to town, we booked a table at Sparrow for an overdue evening visit.

The day was grim, rainy and cold, and we were very tempted to skip the reservation for a soup and movie night in. Thank god we didn’t!

Sparrow Lewisham London

We were greeted on arrival by the most lovely manager! I wish I would have asked for his name (as well as our waiters’) because they were all just so nice! The walk in the rain was worth it just for the warm welcome alone.

Sparrow Lewisham kitchen

We opted out of the aperitifs and went straight for a ‘warming’ bottle of Portuguese red wine (which was excellent). All their drinks sounded great and I would have definitely tried one of their homemade bellinis on a warmer day!

Douro Portuguese wine in Sparrow

Following the waitress’s recommendation, we ordered two dishes per person and shared everything.

Sparrow Spring 2018 menu

Spoiler alert – because I just cannot wait to tell you anymore – it was DE-LI-CIOUS! Seriously one of the best meals we had in a while! Sorry, I just couldn’t contain myself until the end of the post to share it with you! Now that have that out of my system let’s review all the details so you can order the same when you are going (because you absolutely have to, and will go to Sparrow). Just note that the menu may change with the seasons.

We started with the focaccia which was light, yet filling, with strong flavours of olive oil, yet not too oily. Delightful!

Focaccia in Sparrow

We ordered one of the specials of the day, a fried chicken tight with peanut satay sauce. Again, really good and not too greasy for a fried dish, and the sauce was delicious.

Fried chicken in Sparrow

Bear with me for the next dish, I just need a minute of contemplation… These roasted Jerusalem artichokes with hazelnut pesto and bitter leaves were by far my favourite dish of the evening. They were so good that looking at the picture makes me emotional. I could eat this every day for the rest of my life!

Jerusalem artichoke in Sparrow

We followed the most epic plate of vegetables I ever had with the scallops and crab tortelli with mussels. They were good but it was hard for them to follow after the artichokes.

Crab and scallops tortelli in Sparrow

For some reason we mainly ordered vegetarian dishes that night, it wasn’t done on purpose but we were very happy we did as the meatless plates are clearly Sparrow’s forte. The grilled asparagus with lemon and parmesan are a perfect example of it, crunchy and full of Spring flavours!

Grilled asparagus in Sparrow

We ended the savoury courses with the most beautiful Puy lentils I had served with carrots and beetroots.

Puy lentils in Sparrow

We had no appetite anymore but if the desserts were as good as the mains we had to have some! So both my mum and I went for the rhubarb trifle which was rich and delicious and Andrew chose the strawberry pannacotta.

Sparrow rhubarb trifleSparrow strawberry pannacotta

We left Sparrow with the most gratifying feeling, one of having had one of the best meals of the year (so far!).

So make a booking, show up (even if it’s – 20 and snowing) and let the lovely staff take care of you! Wait, did I mention it was one of my favourite meals in a while?

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

A day in Peniche, Portugal

During our stay on the Atlantic Coast of Portugal, just north of Lisbon, we decided to explore some of the villages in the region. So on a cloudy morning, we headed north of Vila Louro to Peniche, a town poking out of the coastline into the ocean.

We arrived mid-morning in what seemed to be a rather sleepy town, very little people were in the street and the shops weren’t open yet.

In the lookout for other human beings, we got guided by the sound of voices to Peniche indoor market.

Peniche Market

The place had a fantastic art-deco architecture with the painted tiles indicating the different stalls (fishmongers, fruits, etc.).

Peniche Market

This place was a vintage explosion of colours.

We headed deeper into town enjoying the tranquillity of the streets and the odd beauty of some decrepit buildings.

Peniche streetOld house in Peniche

Having the town to ourselves, it felt like life could be simpler and more tranquil in a place like this.

Peniche street

Peniche street
Shorts – Gap (similar), jumper – Uniqlo (similar), sunglasses – Missoni (similar) and bag – Missoni.

Church in Peniche

We felt happy and relaxed like if our brains were finally unwinding and that, for a split second, our biggest challenge in life was to find a decent terrace to sit at with a coffee.

We kept exploring the street before reaching the beautiful Fortaleza de Peniche.

Fortaleza de Peniche

Fortaleza de Peniche is a 16th-century fortress which was also used as one of dictator Salazar’s notorious jails for political prisoners. Hard to believe with such joyful colours and beautiful architecture!

Fortaleza de Peniche

The fort is mainly painted in yellow which creates the most beautiful contrast against the blue sky and indigo sea.

Fortaleza de PenicheFortaleza de PenicheFortaleza de Peniche

We took the time to explore the place and visit some of the darkest corners which thanks to the sun-like colour wouldn’t look grim or daunting even if they were trying.

Fortaleza de PenicheFortaleza de Peniche

We took a last moment to enjoy the view before heading down to the port.

Fortaleza de Peniche

In Peniche port, old sailing ships are neighbours to tiny fishing boats.

Peniche port

Even the lifeguard office is charming!

Peniche port

A few minutes north of Peniche is Baleal Beach which is very famous among surfers. Neither Andrew or I can surf but we thought we would go and see what more talented people can do with a board.

We were welcomed by the weirdest meteorological phenomenon, on the beach side it was bright and sunny, on the ocean side it was completely misty!

Baleal Beach

It was fascinating to witness for tourists like us! If you know Baleal Beach please make sure to comment below to explain what that phenomenon is, I would love to learn more about it!

Baleal Beach

We watched the surfers vanishing into the sea.

Surfers in Baleal BeachSurfers in Baleal Beach

As you can see, we weren’t the only ones impressed by the weather and the surfers’ skills!

Photographer on Baleal Beach

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

Dark walls and small spaces

A controversial topic I know, but I think dark walls can get a pretty bad reputation when it comes to small spaces. Shrinking the room! Sucking the light away! Are these presumptions actually justified?

Navy wall and art

I thought I would give dark colours a chance and show you how they can turn the smallest room into the most memorable one.

Small rooms are easy to paint

This is the great thing about dark walls in small spaces if you don’t like the colour you can easily paint over it! This is why I picked our very small home office as the first room in my house to paint in a dark hue. I knew it would only take me 3 hours to redecorate if I didn’t like the final result!

Navy home office

Luckily, I loved how the navy blue walls turned up. They create a small cosy space, they elevate the look of the room and make it a great place to work and feel inspired.

Great first impressions

Dark coloured walls are surprising and a brave thing to opt for. Most people will stay away from this type of colour so chances are people will take notice and be impressed if you paint some of your walls navy. emerald, charcoal or burgundy.

Black wall in corridor

The first thing people see when they enter our house is a black wall with a painting of my grandmother in our corridor. I love the perspective effect and the drama it brings to our place. It makes the entrance of a rather unnoticeable London house much grander than what people would expect!

Art loves dark walls

If you have any wall art piece you want to showcase then definitely consider painting your walls dark. The jewel colours are a great way to frame a painting and making its colours stand out.

Black wall and art

This is exactly what I did with a couple of my grandmother’s paintings. I love these so much I wanted to make sure they were given prime estate in the house so everyone who be able to appreciate them. The dark wall gives a frame to the canvas and the paintings never go unnoticed for all the best reasons.

If in doubt opt for a statement wall

You find painting an entire room black scary, fair enough! I am always terrified the first time I swipe the colour on the wall. In case I get too overwhelmed, I always start with the best statement wall so if I get too scared I can stop there and leave the remainder of the room white.

Teal guest bathroom

This is exactly what I did in our guest bathroom. After painting the first wall I realised that turning the entire room teal would 1) feel a bit much and 2) be a little too technically challenging with all the pipes. So instead of committing to what could have been a big mistake, I left it there and styled the rest of the bathroom nicely so the final result wouldn’t feel like an afterthought.

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

how to

Model Market – London

Guess who’s back, back again
Guess who’s back, guess who’s back?
Guess who’s back, guess who’s back?

I am telling what is back: Model Market! One of the best places in Lewisham!

Model Market Lewisham-

Model Market is one of the few Street Feast food markets in London. Open every Friday and Saturday from 5pm to 1am this is the ultimate south east London destination for a tasty rum punch and some delicious food.

Model Market Lewisham

Once an indoor and outdoor market, the venue had become an abandoned dilapidated space before it was taken over by Street Feast which created a fun venue answering the increasing demand for good food venues in the south-east borough.

Model Market Lewisham

Model Market is like a small version of Mercato Metropolitano with food stalls and sheltered sitting areas so you can enjoy a night out in Lewisham even on a rainy day.

Model Market Lewisham

Once in, head to the main bar to grab a refreshing beer or one of their many cocktails. If you are more of a gin and tonic or rum person there are two other bars purely dedicated to the clear and amber alcohols.

Model Market Lewisham

Since our trip to Barbados, Andrew and I cannot resist a good rum punch which is of course what we opted for last time we went (dragging with us my sister and her fiance who both were seduced after just one sip).

Model Market rum punch

I have also done a little selection of food stalls I highly recommend!

Start the feast by sharing some steamed bao buns from Yum Bun. We had the fried chicken ones which were very tasty and I am planning to try the tofu ones next time (I will update this post to share my thoughts).

Model Market chicken Yum Bun

We then shared the most delicious fried chicken strips from Mother Clucker. So delicious that we finished them before I took a picture so you will have to take my word for it.

Still feeling a bit peckish both Andrew and I opted for burgers from Pocho. They were tasty and satisfying, and the best part is that they are all the same price no matter which feelings you picked!

Model Market Pocho burger

My sister and her fiance were craving some Indian flavours (when in London…) and opted for naan wraps from Frankie Goes to Bollywood. They both reported that it was delicious and they are both French so I trust their opinion!

Model-Market-Lewisham-Yum-Bun

We grabbed some more G&Ts and rum punches and chatted a bit longer, ending a very happy day in London town!

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

Curating a family life on Instagram – MySimpleLondon

I am a Communications professional by background which, in today’s world, means that I spend A LOT of time on internet searching, exploring and learning everything there is to know about SEO, blogging, Social Media, etc.

The great thing is that over the years I have also discovered real gems in the process. Some very talented people who use their platforms wisely to create and share something interesting, useful and oftentimes beautiful! Rather than keeping these little pearls hidden away, I thought I would reach out to them and learn more about their journey. I hope you like this new type of post!

Lazily browsing on Instagram in front of the TV is one of my greatest talents (my parents would be so proud)! This is exactly how I found Ruth from @MySimpleLondon, while checking out what people were posting in my neighbourhood. I was immediately attracted to her feed – it is pretty, simple and relatable. What I find so interesting about Ruth is that she talks about being a mum and her family’s life while always protecting the privacy of her close ones.

Ruth from MySimpleLondon

Tell us a little bit about you and your family?

I am Ruth, the face behind @MySimpleLondon on Instagram. I live in South East London with my husband and my seven-year-old son. We love our little pocket of the city and feel so grateful to have a home and community here. I am a childminder, prior to that I was a Primary school teacher for 10 years. Childminding was a great option as I was able to combine my already established skills with the ability to look after my son full time. I am so grateful I made the choice to change – not only do I look after wonderful children but I have been able to create a much more balanced lifestyle which unfortunately I do not think would have been achievable for me as a teacher.

When did you join Instagram and why?

I started @MySimpleLondon in the summer of 2017. Since becoming a childminder, I have had a lot of time to think about my own well-being. One of the things I discovered unconsciously at first, then more consciously, was that I need creative outlets. At the moment Instagram is the perfect outlet for me because it is so flexible! I can take pictures on my days off or during children’s nap times, I can post pictures when I have time, often in the evening, and the Instagram community is so warm and encouraging.

Describe your theme, how did you choose it?

When I first set up my Instagram, I thought it was going to be about my area of London. Unfortunately, I am not out and about in South London every day exploring new places to drink tea. So my Instagram page has evolved to be about enjoying the simple everyday moments: maybe a cup of tea at the end of the day, noticing seasonal changes or cooking with my son. I do try to keep an element of London within my feed because I am passionate about supporting small businesses and creatives in the area which I live.

Tell us a bit about how you decide what to share on Instagram? 

I share my everyday life on Instagram. There is definitely a tendency to share more of the highlights of my life, however I do try and reflect real life within my captions so everyone will know I am not just sitting drinking tea all day every day!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend! Today was mostly about getting things done ready for a busy working week ahead, but now everything is done (ish!) time to relax! Despite the rain today, I very quickly popped into Blackheath farmers market to pick up this delicious bread. Lovely bread and cheese on the table perfect combination! What did u have on your table this weekend? #myweekendtable #onthetable #itsthelittlethingsinlife #seeksimplicity #homeisacupoftea  #momentsofmine #simpleandstill #awakethelight #mysimpleeveryday  #slowlivingforlife #flashesofdelight #onequietcup #simplethingsmadebeautiful #calm_collected  #foreverfaffing #verilymoment #seekthepositive #myeverydaymagic #aquietstyle #postyoureverydaylife #adoremycupoftea #blackheath #blackheathfarmersmarket #selondon #londonlocal #londonbylondoners #lovelewisham #lovewhereyoulive #botanicalpickmeup #succulents

A post shared by Ruth / living intentionally (@mysimplelondon) on

When I set up this account I made the choice not to include photos of my son on my main grid, though he sometimes appears in Instagram stories. There are many reasons why I made this decision, including the fact that he is now 7 years old and is very aware that I have an Instagram account and that photos get likes. I don’t want him to get the idea that the number of likes of a picture of him is important, and in anyway validates who he is. Another reason why I don’t want to include many pictures of him is because I do not want to create an online footprint for him before he is even at the age of being able to create his own social media accounts. Teaching children about e-safety is so important if I want to share photos or video privately of my son with friends and family; I always check if he is happy for me to do so. In the social media world our children are growing up in, I think it is important to teach them about control and what they feel is or isn’t ok to share online.

Do you have an Instagram strategy? Do you stick to a topic or you just share as you go? 

I do not have a long-term Instagram strategy but there are certain things I try to do daily. I try and post a picture every day, and when I post the picture I try to ensure I have the time to be sociable with the community of Instagram. I try to stick to my theme: simple living and London. Sometimes I take a picture on the day and post that evening. Ideally, I have a couple of pictures stored up for days when I do not have the time or creative juices to take photos.

When I started out, I opened my account with the attitude “Let’s just see what happens”. I still feel the same today, so I don’t have an ultimate goal but I am open to opportunities in whatever form they come.

What is the greatest thing that happens since you joined Instagram?

The greatest thing for me has been developing a community; it is so lovely to interact with lovely people. It amazes me that people enjoy my pictures, make comments and privately message me!

What advice would you give to new parents who are or want to join Instagram?

I think I would advise parents to really think about the purpose of creating an account. Is it a private closed account to share photos with friends and family? Or are you creating an account for a purpose where you want to grow a following? If it is the latter, then I would suggest taking time to think about: Why are you setting up the account? Is there something you want to achieve through it? Have you got the time daily to grow the account? Are you going to include your family? Children? What will happen when your children get a bit older?

Having said all this, Instagram is a great tool, which can really work for parents, and my main piece of advice would be: have fun with it, enjoy it and don’t take the numbers too seriously!

You can find Ruth on Instagram @MySimpleLondon!

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

Travelling in style – Comfortable shoes to wander the world

As I mentioned in my best small bags to travel post, the French in me cannot help but favour any item aesthetically pleasing to something super functional. I know the look of a clothing item shouldn’t dictate everything, so over the years, I had to search and test the most functional travel accessories that yet look fairly good. It took a fair amount of blisters in the process but I now have a solid selection of shoes which take me from day to night and from long walks to trendy cocktail bars elegantly and ‘sans’ blister!

The shoes below have been hiking up the steep hills of Lisbon, walked to the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, went sailing in Greece and joined me for romantic dinners in Paris, Tokyo and London. I would be curious to know how many miles or kilometres I have done in these. What I can guarantee you is that they have been thoroughly tested!

The stylish trainers

Starting with the most obvious: the trainers. They are most travellers go-to when it comes to exploring a city, hiking in the countryside or going for a seaside walk. Note that the selection below is for regular and most common terrains – streets, steps, flat country lanes, etc. I would, of course, wear hiking boots for any wilder or more extreme conditions.

Superga Classic 2750

The Superga shoes need no introductions, they have been around since 1911 and for good reasons!  The thick rubber soles make these some of the most comfortable trainers around. They are perfect if you are going to explore a city all day long or even for an easy walk in the countryside.

Silver Superga

I picked my Supergas in silver, and they have so many colours and material options that you can get as classic or as extravagant as you want with these!

Adidas Stan Smith

I know, I know, EVERYBODY has Adidas Stan Smiths. They are so common that a lot of people find them boring. My tip is to pick a funny detail colour or material. Mine, for instance, have furry black details.

Black velvet detail Adidas Stan Smith

Common? Yes. A bit Millenial-shoes cliche? Indeed. But they are comfortable, waterproof and stylish. They can be styled with jeans or a pretty dress which makes them the perfect shoes to walk in all day and dance in all night!

Keds Champion Originals

The ultimate plimsolls! Keds are light, comfortable and cheap! They are not waterproof though so you are better off using them on sunny days.

Classic Keds

I have had mine for many years and they are still going strong. I find them to be a more delicate alternative to Converses if like me you have teeny-tiny feet (I am a size UK 3, true story!).

The most stylish and comfortable boots

The above shoes are suitable for most type of temperatures but in the middle of the winter, you probably won’t want to wear regular court shoes when going for dinner or drinks. Luckily I have found the most comfortable pair of boots: Dune Pebble Boots.

Dune Pebble boots navy velvet

The heel is not too high so you can walk in these all day long and the navy velvet make these a bit of a fashion statement. Every time I wear them I get compliments! The fabric is unexpected, yet very on trend, and they are so comfortable that they are the perfect day to night winter shoes!

Dune Pebble boots navy velvet

I took the Dune Pebble Boots with me to Japan, Paris and I wear them daily in London! They are the perfect cold weather shoes for a city break where you may end the day in a snazzy bar.

The best summer shoes

When the temperatures rise you may want to give your feet a bit of fresh air. I still pack and wear the trainers mentioned above with me but I also make sure to have stylish yet super comfortable open shoes.

Havaianas

For the daytime, I can always rely on my Havaianas. The soles of these are so comfortable that even my dad, who had never ever worn open shoes before, got converted after I brought him some back from Brazil. I don’t know what their soles are made of but is like walking on a cloud, no other flip-flops are as good as these.

Havaianas flip flops

I have 2 pairs, the regular slim flip-flops, which I bought in L.A. in 2009 and which are still going strong to this day, and the sandal version perfect to walk for hours as they hold tight around the ankle.

Havaianas sandals

It really shows that sometimes paying the brand price is really worth it.

Espadrilles

The ultimate French summer shoes, almost everyone back home owns a pair of these. You have flat models for both men and women, but my personal favourites are the low wedges. The thick soles make espadrilles ridiculously comfortable and the low wedges are perfect to be a bit more dressed up yet able to walk. I usually get my espadrilles from either Andre, Marks & Spencer or La Redoute.

Stripe espadrille wedges

I cumulated a few pairs over the years which make these my go-to shoes in the summer as I can switch colours depending on my outfits.

Black espadrille wedges

Finally, an espadrille should be cheap, in France we usually buy these at the local markets in seaside towns, so make sure to not overpay when you get your pair!

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

best shoes to

A week in Barbados

Andrew and I were craving some winter sun at the beginning of this year. We needed to go away somewhere warm. So we looked at a map of the world and checked where it was ‘bikini’ warm in February/March and under 9 hours flight. The Caribbean became an obvious destination pretty quickly!

Unfortunately, our Plan A which I mentioned in my Where to in 2018?’ post was waaaaayyyyy too expensive for us. We looked at alternatives and Barbados showed up on the various flight and hotel sites as pretty affordable. So we booked flights and accommodation without really knowing what to expect.

Well my friends, if there is one thing I have learned on that trip it is that Plan Bs can sometimes be the best decision you can make!

 

From London, the flight to Barbados is about 8 hours. We landed in the afternoon and headed to our first accommodation of the week, to the East Coast in Bathsheba. We grabbed dinner at a local restaurant and went to bed early to be rested for our first day.

Sunrise in Bathsheba

Day 1 – Bathsheba

We purposely booked two accommodations for our trip, one on the East coast and one on the West one to have an opportunity to see both sides of Barbados. The East coast is very wild, with the Atlantic ocean and the mountains nearby, this part of the island feels remote and authentic away from the cruise boats and the tourist crowds. It is also the perfect spot if you are a surfer!

Sign post in Bathsheba

We stayed in Bathsheba the few nights and we spent our first day exploring the small village and the surrounding beaches.

Bathsheba

After breakfast, we headed to the Soup Bowl, a beach famous for its waves and its floating-like rocks.

Soup Bowl BathshebaSoup Bowl Bathsheba

We spent a bit of time enjoying the views.

Bathsheba beachSoup Bowl Bathsheba

Unfortunately for us, the beach was covered with red algae when we stayed there. We originally had planned to explore more of the East Coast beaches on our first couple of days but the entire area was affected and access to the beaches was impossible. The locals explained to us that it is a recent issue and it forced us to slightly amend our plans once there. Bathsheba is still really worth visiting, so make sure you spare some time to explore the East Coast a bit!

Soup Bowl BathshebaSoup Bowl Bathsheba

After spending a bit of time at the Soup Bowl we grabbed some lunch at Dina’s bar, which is right by the beach. We then spent the remainder of the afternoon reading and relaxing before having dinner at the Round House where we were staying.

Dina's BathshebaBathsheba

Day 2 – Mullins Beach

On our second day, we coordinated a car rental with the hotel as our original plans had been disrupted by tones of seaweed. We decided to head West where we were told there were no algae.

We drove from Bathsheba to Holetown, which took about 35 minutes, stopped at a shop to buy some packed lunches and headed north to Mullins beach.

Mullins beach Barbados

Mullins beach is everything you expect a Carribean beach to look like. Calm turquoise water, white sand, palm trees and a little beach shack selling fresh beers.

Mullins beach Barbados

We spent a blissful afternoon swimming and reading in paradise!

Day 3 – Holetown

You will quickly notice reading this post that going to Barbados involve a lot of beach time. It is a difficult job, but someone has got to do it right?

So on our third day, again we headed West to Holetown. This time we stayed in the city area where the beach was just as fantastic as Mullins’.

Holetown beach

Again most of our time was spent sunbathing, swimming and reading.

Holetown beach

We concluded the day at the beach bar for a refreshing beer. There is something magical about that late afternoon drink in Barbados. Everybody is in a great mood, the sun starts to set and the music playing, locals and tourists hang out together for dinner in the most relaxed atmosphere.

Holetown beach bar

Day 4 – Pebbles Beach

We headed to our second accommodation, the Radisson in Bridgetown, in the morning, which was right on Pebbles Beach, and we spent the rest of the day enjoying the pink sand and the turquoise water.

SONY DSC

We grabbed lunch at Cuz’ Fish Stand. There is only one dish on the menu, cutters which are fish sandwiches. It is good, simple and very cheap so make sure to try it!

Cuz' Fish Stand BarbadosCuz' Fish Stand cutter Barbados

We ended our day with a local rums tasting at the hotel which was really educative and fun (mostly after the third one!).

Pebbles Beach sunset Barbados

Day 5 – Carlisle bay and a sunset cruise

We spent the morning of our fifth day again on Pebbles beach, exploring the stretch of white sand looking for seashells and skipping stones.

Pebbles beachSkipping stones Pebbles beach

After another lunch at Cuz’ Fish Stand, we got ready for the main activity of the day a sunset cruise!

We booked our cruise with Cool Runnings and we couldn’t recommend it enough! A great experience which included snorkelling, dancing, a few rum punches and a tasty dinner. Not to mention the sunset view, obviously.

Sunset Cruise Barbados

Day 6 – Beach time and Oistins Fish Fry

On our second to last day, we decided to have a lazy morning sipping on coffee and on enjoying the views from our balcony. There is nothing more exceptional than seeing some Arabian horses bathing in turquoise water at sunrise if you ask me (check out the video to see it!)!

The afternoon was spent at the beach.

Palm trees on Pebbles Beach

In the evening we headed to THE place to be on a Friday night in Barbados – Oistins Fish Fry!

Oistins Fish Fry

This small fishing town becomes the ultimate Friday night out destination with the liveliest food market you will ever visit! A great place to end a week on a paradisiac island!

Oistins Fish Fry

Day 7 – Bridgetown

The great thing when flying back home to Europe is that you will still have an entire day to explore before boarding in the evening. So to end our trip to Barbados we decided to explore its capital – Bridgetown.

BridgetownBridgetown

The city is very busy and full of energy, a far cry from the tranquillity of the beaches.

Bridgetown

We walked along the shopping streets before heading to the harbour for a spot of lunch.

Bridgetown MarketBridgetown Harbour

We visited the main sights such as the Independence Arch and the Lord Nelson Statue before heading back to our hotel via Brownes beach.

Independence Arch Bridgetown

This was my first time in the Caribbean and I already cannot wait to return!

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

A week in Barbados

Oistins Fish Fry – Barbados

On Friday evenings, there is only one place to be when you are in Barbados – Oistins!

Just south of Bridgetown, Oistins is a fishing village which turns into the most lively spot on the island at the weekend. Food, music, dancing, head to Oistins Fish Fry and you are in for a great night!

Oistins Fish Fry Barbados

Getting there is an adventure too! Head to the closest bus stop to your hotel and wait for one of the small vans to stop. You read that right, you won’t actually take the official public transport, nope! You will board the first private van honking at you with the driver yelling ‘Oistins????’. I know it seems weird but just embrace it. A lot of locals provide public transport with their own vans. It is how most of the Bajans travel between towns and it is very cheap!

Once in Oistins, just follow the people and the music and you will find your way to the big food market.

Oistins Fish Fry BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

There, get lost in the alleyways to find your preferred dinner option. Most food stalls offer very similar menus made of various fish, plantains (my favourite!), rice and beans. It is simple and delicious!

Oistins Fish Fry BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

Grab a sit, order food and a fresh beer and enjoy people watching while eating flavoursome Bajan food.

Oistins Fish Fry barbecue BarbadosOistins Fish Fry food Barbados

When done with your dinner, go explore the market beer in hand. In Oistins, you will find many places to buy souvenirs.

Oistins shops BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

Also, make sure to swing by the domino and card players. In a corner of the market, you will find many locals playing games. The atmosphere is very lively as some players can get a little too competitive, but everyone is in good spirit.

Oistins dominos BarbadosOistins dominos BarbadosOistins card players Barbados

End your evening by the stage where you will see some of the best local dancers. They all had impressive moves so Andrew and I got a little too intimidated to join and sat at a table close by with a rum punch.

Oistins dancers BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

The blissful and joyful Barbados life at its best!

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!

Sunset cruise in Barbados

The main activities people think of when visiting the Caribbeans include swimming, tanning, eating delicious food and enjoying a refreshing drink on the beach. So what about doing all of the above but on a boat sailing on the turquoise waters? You are in? Great, keep reading!

We had done a sunset cruise before in Santorini and it was so magical that we promised ourselves to do it again next time we were visiting a paradisal island. Which happened to be Barbados, an island that was everything we expected it to be and more! The sunsets on the West Coast are so glorious that we had to book a cruise, which we did with Cool Runnings that came highly recommended by some of our friends.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

On an afternoon, our driver came to pick us up at our hotel around 2:30pm – next stop Bridgetown! All the staff at Cool Runnings is lovely and has an excellent sense of humour so our drive to the harbour was actually a great taste of what was to come and was everything but boring! We exchange some jokes, sang Happy Birthday to another passenger and shared the best addresses for a rum punch in the area.

Once in the centre of Bridgetown, we were directed to the harbour where our catamaran was waiting. The boats are really big and we travelled with about 20 other passengers.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

We started sailing, the music started playing, the drinks started being served – we were in Carribean heaven. The views were so beautiful even the menacing clouds couldn’t spoil the evening for us. Mind you, the multiple rum punches probably helped with that too!

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

Our first snorkelling stop was in Carlisle Bay to see some sea turtles. I didn’t snorkel as I am not very confident at it and the clouds were really looming over. Andrew was braver than me and went. Unfortunately that day there was only one turtle around being looked at by about 20 humans. Imagine what she was thinking!

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool RunningsBarbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

We had another snorkelling stop further down Carlisle Bay to visit the shipwrecks. Andrew again went and he can report that the water temperature was very pleasant and the shipwrecks really nice to check out.

In the meantime, I was enjoying the views while sipping on a drink and chatting with visitors from all around the world. It is good to note that there is an open bar onboard and everyone is rather ‘joyful’ by the end of the night (wink).

We then started our journey to our dinner spot, sailing along the West Coast, enjoying the views of the land.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool RunningsBarbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

And of the sea.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool RunningsBarbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

The sky was also slowly getting ready for the big show.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool RunningsBarbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

We stopped for dinner at Sandy Lane. A beach famous for being the home of a very famous Bajan singer (second wink). And when looking at the place you can understand why – it is one of the most beautiful beaches on the island!

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

The food on board was great and there were options for any type of diet.

After a filling meal, Andrew went for one last swing while I was, again, ordering another drink (we are all friends here, no one is judging!).

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

The music got louder, the sky set itself on fire and the boat turned into a floating dance floor. I don’t think there are many better things in life than dancing at sunset and under the stars on a boat sailing along a Carribean island.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool RunningsBarbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

We laughed, danced and sang together before heading back to Bridgetown, our heads spinning because of euphoria and well… rum.

Barbados Sunset Cruise with Cool RunningsBarbados Sunset Cruise with Cool Runnings

So make sure to book your sunset cruise with Cool Runnings if you are ever visiting Barbados. You will meet people from all around the world, dance, eat, drink and see one of the most memorable sunsets.

Follow me on InstagramTwitterPinterestYoutube and Trover!