Sunday, 15 July 2018

Lisbon Photo Diary / 35mm


This summer I got to visit Lisbon, a place that has been on my travel list for so long! I didn't know much about the city before we went, but from the photos I'd seen of the beautifully tiled buildings, the famous trams & overall vibrancy of the city - I was drawn to it immediately. When we arrived it definitely did not disappoint and it was so much more than I had even imagined. Lisbon is so lively and bursting with culture but the pace of life there doesn't feel manic. It has a very laid-back rhythm which gave us the perfect balance of seeing everything on our lists while also taking much needed time to chill out and relax on the balcony or at a cafe. The city feels modern but still very respectful of it's tradition and history. The more we explored the more I couldn't believe people actually get to live in this gorgeous place that's like something out of a film with hidden gems on every corner!




Some of my highlights:
- Alfama: One of Lisbon's oldest districts & where we stayed. I'm so glad we stayed here as it felt like a very authentic part of the city, somewhere you could spend hours getting lost in the winding, hilly streets. It's like a cobble-stoned labyrinth with something interesting around every corner & the best little shops to pop into for Ginjinha! There is also an open-air market called Feira da Ladra nearby that you could easily spend half a day at.
- Graça: Incredible viewpoint overlooking the city and Lisbon Castle.
- TukTuk city tour: We did a walking tour and a tuktuk tour which were both great but I felt the tuk tuk tour was an extra bit more special as our guide was so knowledgeable of Lisbon's history, going out of his way to show us incredible street art and wonderful places steeped in history but outside the typical 'must see' tourist checklist.
- Pasteis de nata, obv.





Sintra

If you fancy getting out of the city for a day trip, Sintra is a dreamy forested village that seems world's away from the hub of Lisbon despite only being about 30 minutes outside the city. It has an enchanted, fairytale feel to it because of the extravagant pastel palaces & Moorish Castle that sit over hills of lush greenery. As there are 10 national monuments in Sintra, you definitely won't be lacking on things to check out. It's a very popular tourist spot & pretty crowded, but I felt it was really worth visiting for the ornate palaces & ancient monuments. One thing I'd say is eat in the town before you trek up or bring lunch with you because the park restaurant is way overpriced and waaay underwhelming!







Brunchin'

Being honest, I think I was possibly most excited about the food.... As soon as we booked the trip I was immediately saving cute cafe's & restaurants on Instagram to visit for brunch (yes i'm basic). Lisbon has such amazing places to eat & each one will give you major decor envy! So many delicious, healthy options to suit everyone's tastes which is great when you're travelling with a group - some of our faves were Heim Cafe, Nicolau Lisboa (prepare for long queues here) & Hello Kristof. Everything is so affordable which is great if you're someone who loves to try out a lot of different things on a menu like me!






Miradouro da Graça

One of my favourite things that we did on this trip was visit the Graça viewpoint at sunset. After a long day of walking around the city it was so nice to chill out here, share a bottle of wine and take in the incredible view while talking about our day. It seems to be a very popular place to go in the evening for both tourists and locals, but the atmosphere is still very relaxed and it doesn't feel crowded at all. This is such a great spot for a well-earned rest after a day of trekking around. We loved it so much that we came back again on our last night! 





I absolutely loved Lisbon and will definitely be returning soon. This has been one of my favourite city break trips so far & doing it with great friends made it extra special. From the gorgeous architecture, it's lively yet laid-back atmosphere & the delicious food - I know there's definitely a lot more to experience here and I can't wait to visit again!






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Friday, 2 February 2018

Japan on Video / December 2017



Happy February! January kinda seemed never ending didn't it?! This is shaping up to be a very busy month and I'm so excited to start it off with a lil' (pretty shaky) video from my trip to Japan last December. It's so nice to look back on these clips, sort of feels like I'm reliving the amazing trip. Although it's definitely giving me a major travel itch again...
All filmed on my Canon G7x, hope you like it & if possible please watch it in HD!

Music by Lakey Inspired
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Sunday, 7 January 2018

Tokyo On Film



 Happy Sunday! Last month was a busy one between work, travelling to Japan and then all the Christmas madness but I'm finally back to it today with the first blogpost of 2018 - my film photos from Tokyo! I hadn't picked up my film camera in quite awhile so I was pretty out of practice and none of these photos have any major editing done to them. I spent the majority of the trip filming on my Canon G7X, so unfortunately I didn't really think to pick up the film camera until our last few days in Tokyo. However it was so enjoyable to just freely shoot (and hope for the best!) as we wandered around and I'm so happy that I brought the camera with me, these photos will be lovely to look back on.


One of the places I really wanted to visit again before we left was Yoyogi Park, located very close to the vibrant Harajuku district. This treetop covered path is such a tranquil & relaxing walk that makes you completely forget about the hectic pace of the city you're still in the middle of. We got so lucky with the weather on this day, the sun was shining and the December chill completely disappeared for the afternoon. Only a short walk through the park leads you to Meiji Shrine, the entrance marked by a massive torii gate in the photo below. Something I really love about Tokyo is how you can find shrines and nature strolls like this one right in the heart of the built-up city, merging the old and new together. This was such an amazing day!


Since the neon signs & bright flashing lights are iconic to the district, it's no surprise that Shibuya really comes to life at night. One of my favourite things to do was just wander around aimlessly at night through both the busy area's and the quieter side streets, you're bound to come across interesting sights & hidden gems! The atmosphere in Shibuya at night is so unique.


While Shibuya Crossing is famed as a must-see attraction, you can genuinely feel the energy of Tokyo when walking through the scramble - we must have have done it like 8 times in a row one day and it never got old! Day or night this area is buzzing with activity. It's both amazing and admirable how in such a bustling & densely populated city, there's still a really prominent sense of structure, order and cleanliness all around!

 

For our last few days of the trip we stayed in the same apartment that we booked during our first visit to Japan back in 2016. The apartment is located literally less than 5 minutes away from Shibuya Crossing so everything was so accessible to us. We may have been staying in one of the busiest area's of the city but our apartment was such a nice and surprisingly quiet place to come back to after a long day of wandering around - perfect to wind down and eat our way through the local FamilyMart snack selection!

 

As I said... I was very out of practice with the camera and as a result there's a fair few blurry photos but sure, I like them anyway! The three photos below were shot on the last night, the bottom one from one of my favourite places & viewpoints in the city, the Tokyu Plaza rooftop! 


 Looking back on these photos makes me want to relive the trip all over again. It really is a country like no other I've ever visited and obviously so different to Ireland. While the constant crowds of people, the neon lights, the sensory overload and the seemingly endless span of the city can be overwhelming, every day feels different there and I loved that. I'm already itching to get back ASAP and see a lot more of this amazing country!


I hope you enjoyed looking through the photos - I'll be posting a video from Osaka, Kyoto & Tokyo this month too so look out for that! :)


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