The captivating surroundings of Denver

My trip to Denver turned out to be amazing, not so much because of the city itself (I admit not having enough time to explore it, and I still enjoyed it), but most of all because of all the great things you can see and do in the surrounding areas. The wildlife is flourishing, and one has the feeling of being in the middle of a Western movie. I visited the Buffalo Bill Museum & Grave, where the life of this big legend is illustrated. The famous Red Rocks was also an amazing site – and the Rocky Mountains couldn`t make a better backdrop for this fascinating landscape.  Let me take you on a photo tour through my experiences, I hope you enjoy it!

PHOTO TOUR:

Seating over 9.000 people, the Red Rock Open Air Theater is famous for its wonderful acoustic and once-in-a-lifetime musical experiences. The huge red rocks on each side (ship -and creation rock) create a powerful and impressive surrounding for the magic.
Seating over 9.000 people, the Red Rock Open Air Theater is famous for its wonderful acoustic and once-in-a-lifetime musical experiences. The huge red rocks on each side (ship -and creation rock) create a powerful and impressive surrounding for the magic.
The Red Rocks Open Air Theater does not only provide great concerts - it also gives you an amazing view of Denver and the Rocky Mountains in the back.
The Red Rocks Open Air Theater does not only provide great concerts – it also gives you an amazing view of Denver and the Rocky Mountains in the back.
Surrounded by this landscape you feel like a participant in a real Wild West Cowboy movie. You can really imagine the cowboys fighting the indians and shooting buffalos on the fields. With the red rocks lying like pearls on a string in the landscape, it is a truly impressive view.
Surrounded by this landscape you feel like a participant in a real Wild West Cowboy movie. You can really imagine the cowboys fighting the indians and shooting buffalos on the fields. With the red rocks lying like pearls on a string in the landscape, it is a truly impressive view.
From the Red Rocks, you can see Denver in concealed in fog like a well hidden secret.
From the Red Rocks, you can see Denver concealed in fog like a well hidden secret.
This zig-zag road is a beautiful view from above - just not as thrilling going down the same road with a tour bus. But hey, no risk - no fun!
This zig-zag road is a beautiful view from above – just not as thrilling going down the same road with a tour bus. But hey, no risk – no fun!
This amazing feather headdress was worn by Iron Tail, a friend of Buffalo Bill. It is to be seen in the Buffalo Bill Museum (Lookout Mountain Park, situated approx. 40 min. from Denver), as one of many jewels from this time.
This amazing feather headdress was worn by Iron Tail, a friend of Buffalo Bill. It is to be seen in the Buffalo Bill Museum (Lookout Mountain Park, situated approx. 40 min. from Denver), as one of many jewels from this time. Just next to the museum, one can also visit Buffalo Bills grave.
These boots, worn by Buffalo Bill himself, are the coolest boots I have ever seen. Respect! (To be seen in the Buffalo Bill Museum)
These boots, worn by Buffalo Bill himself, are the coolest boots I have ever seen. Respect! (To be seen in the Buffalo Bill Museum)
The boss himself - Buffalo Bill!
The boss himself – Buffalo Bill!
On the top of the hill, from the Buffalo Bill Museum, you ave a great view over the whole valley below.
On the top of the hill, from the Buffalo Bill Museum, you have a great view over the whole valley below.
From the tour bus we could observe a variated wildlife. Amongst others this deer and his friend below let us take part of their beauty.
From the tour bus we could observe a variated wildlife. Amongst others, this deer and his friend below let us take part of their beauty.

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Even though not living free, the buffalos are powerful and wild through their appearance. To actually see these animals was an incredible experience and the whole history of the buffalos ran through my head when observing them.
Even though not living free, the buffalos are powerful and wild in their appearance. To actually see these animals was an incredible experience and the whole history of the buffalos ran through my head when observing them.
A one and a half hour drive from Denver, you find Estes Park. Even though this is a touristy area, it is a great experience. This water wheel was a hidden treasure that I found in a side street. It is definitely worth the drive!
A one and a half hour drive from Denver, you find Estes Park. Even though this is a touristy area, it is a great experience. This water wheel was a hidden treasure that I found in a side street. It is definitely worth the drive!
Welcome to "The Stanley Hotel" in Estes Park. This is where the magic happened  (or the horror so to speak) when shooting the famous horror movie, The Shining (Stephen King). I was so scared just seeing the hotel from afar, that I did`t even enter it. No way! (redrum...redrum...goosebumps)
Welcome to “The Stanley Hotel” in Estes Park. This is where the magic happened (or the horror so to speak) when shooting the famous horror movie, The Shining (Stephen King). I was so scared just seeing the hotel from afar, that I did`t even enter it. No way! (redrum…redrum…goosebumps)
Long live American (sign photographed in Estes Park)!
Long live America (sign photographed in Estes Park)!

I would like to thank Jessica and Rodney for taking me on an amazing tour to Estes Park and showing me around – memories for life that I will always appreciate!

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

Jazz and joy in New Orleans!

Arriving at the airport in New Orleans, the first thing meeting me, is a huge statue of Louis Armstrong playing the trumpet. So I thought, hey, this can`t be anything than good. There was already music streaming from the loudspeakers – and the music was to follow me the whole week through.

New Orleans is full of music. These guys were really good and check out the little one - just adorable!
New Orleans is full of music. These guys were really good and check out the little one – just adorable!

New Orleans – the city of blues and jazz – had some hard times, but it has managed to keep its joy and love for music alive through all of it. It is like breathing music wherever you go – the city is alive!

The underground music bars were my favorites!
The underground music bars were my favorites!

Hotel tip:

I stayed at the Hampton Inn, which I can recommend, situated only a 10 minute walk from the French Quarter and close to the Convention Center, the Mississippi River as well as highlights like the Mardi Gras World. Here, one can see the Mardi Gras wagons and sculptures all year round.

Concert at the Mardi Gras World!
Concert at the Mardi Gras World!
Band playing at the Mardi Gras World (the picture is blurry because I just could not keep still!)
Band playing at the Mardi Gras World (the picture is blurry because I just could not keep still!)

To take a ride on an old and traditional steam boat on the Mississippi listening to good live music was a special experience. For the ones seeking more action (I did not experience it myself because I got sick, but it was recommended to me by my friends who did it, they had lots of fun), one can go on a swamp tour on an airboat – fly over the swamps and see alligators!

The steam boats just fascinated me completely - they are beautiful!
The steam boats just fascinated me completely – they are beautiful!
The Creole Queen - a proud and powerful name for a boat
The Creole Queen – a proud and powerful name for a boat.
This was a good reason not to fall over board on the steam boat - the end rear paddlewheel!
This was a good reason not to fall over board on the steam boat – the end rear paddlewheel!

There are several other nice tours for all kinds of interests; Garden Tours, Plantation Tours, Katrina Tours or even Ghost Tours. For those interested in vampires – well, you can imagine. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on the view), I  don`t belong to them.

Restaurant tips:

There are so many good restaurants in the city, all serving delicious sea food and creole specialities. A famous restaurant in the Street Royal is the “Court of Two Sisters”.

One of the most well-known and most awarded restaurants in the city - Court of Two Sisters!
One of the most well-known and most awarded restaurants in the city – Court of Two Sisters!
Need some extra charm?  Before entering the restaurant you have the chance.!
Need some extra charm? Before entering the restaurant you have the chance!

I had a taste of the claw fish in a restaurant just a few blocks from the Court of Two Sisters and can really recommend it, the “Royal House Oyster Bar”.

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This street turned out to be my favorite one instead of Bourbon Street - The Royal Street or "Rue Royal" - good restaurants and sweet little stores full of temptations!
This street turned out to be my favorite one instead of Bourbon Street – The Royal Street or “Rue Royal” – good restaurants and sweet little stores full of temptations!

Even though not a real restaurant, it has to be mentioned here as it was one of my favorite food experiences in New Orleans: having Beignets at the famous Cafe du Monde in the French Quarter. This was a true “wow”!

Hot and fresh "Beignets" at the cult cafe "Cafe du Monde" - very, very yammi!
Hot and fresh “Beignets” at the cult cafe “Cafe du Monde” – very, very yammi!

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Further impressions of the city New Orleans in pictures:

The Bourbon Street is one of the most famous streets in the world - my expactations was maybe too high, but I have to admit I was a little disappointed...!
The Bourbon Street is one of the most famous streets in the world – my expactations was maybe too high, but I have to admit I was a little disappointed…!
A Bourbon glow!
A Bourbon glow!

A cool street musician playing in front of the famous Cafe du Monde!
A cool street musician playing in front of the famous Cafe du Monde!
This beautiful building - a hallmark of the city - was a nice view having Beignets at the Cafe du Monde just across  the street.
This beautiful building – a hallmark of the city – was a nice view having Beignets at the Cafe du Monde just across the street.
The St. Louise Cathedral in New Orleans, situated in the "throne" of the French Quarter.
The St. Louise Cathedral in New Orleans, situated at the “throne” of the French Quarter.
The French Quarter is full of nice buildings - all with their own charm.
The French Quarter is full of nice buildings – all with their own charm.

Idyll on the Mississippi with the "Norwegian Dawn".
Idyll on the Mississippi with the “Norwegian Dawn”.
A cigar maker at the "New Orleans Cigar factory"!
A cigar maker at the “New Orleans Cigar factory”!
Mississippi River at night - a beautiful sight!
Mississippi River at night – a beautiful sight!

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

OSLO – the capital of winter wonderland!

Would you like to take a journey with me to my personal winter wonderland? Come with me to Oslo, Norway, and read about one of my favorite cities. The city is a fascinating place, also in the winter time, and it has its own magic when covered in snow.

The New Opera & Ballet and a frozen "Oslo Fjord" - true winter magic!
The New Opera & Ballet and a frozen “Oslo Fjord” – true winter magic!

Norway’s capital has almost 650.000 inhabitants and I visited the university there some years ago. It is a city surrounded by beautiful nature and powerful ocean – an unbeatable combination. As a crone of the city, the royal castle is situated on top of the hill at the end of the famous shopping street, Karl Johans gate. At the other end of the street, the Main Station is situated and the symbol of the city, the tiger (Oslo is also called “The Tiger City”).

The symbol of Oslo - the tiger. The city is called "The Tiger City"!
The symbol of Oslo – the tiger. The city is called “The Tiger City”!

PHOTO TOUR: with these pictures, I would like to show you what you can easily see and visit in the city center – all walkable and free of cost.

The New Opera & Ballet is an architectural  wonder and you can walk up on the roof, seeing the building from different angles. In the summer, there are concerts and events taking place on the roof.
The New Opera & Ballet is an architectural wonder and you can walk up on the roof, seeing the building from different angles. In the summer, there are concerts and events taking place on the roof.
The New Opera is impressive from the inside. You can also book a tour through the Opera House to see the Great Hall where the performances take place and learn more about the development of the  building.
The New Opera is impressive from the inside. You can also book a tour through the Opera House to see the Great Hall where the performances take place and learn more about the development of the building.
Oslo is developing fast, and new and exciting architecture is spreading. These building are situated close to the New Opera and the Main Station.
Oslo is developing fast, and new and exciting architecture is spreading. These building are situated close to the New Opera and the Main Station.
A beautiful building; the National Theatre!
A beautiful building; the National Theatre!
The Royal Castle is situated on the top of the hill with a wonderful view of the main shopping street, Karl Johan, If the flag is up - the king is home!
The Royal Castle is situated on the top of the hill with a wonderful view of the main shopping street, Karl Johan, If the flag is up – the king is home!
The Parlament is an important place for the country and can be visited by guests on certain days.
The Parlament is an important place for the country and can be visited by guests on certain days.
"God Jul" means Merry Christmas in norwegian - Oslo is wonderful in the winter time.
“God Jul” means Merry Christmas in Norwegian – Oslo is wonderful in the winter time.
The City Hall of Oslo (close to Aker Brygge and Akershus Festning).
The City Hall of Oslo (close to Aker Brygge and Akershus Festning).
The historic and dignified "Grand Hotel" in the city center was home to a number of important people visiting Oslo. Visit the hotels restaurant for at least coffee and cake to soak in the flair of the hotel.
The historic and dignified “Grand Hotel” in the city center was home to a number of important people visiting Oslo. Visit the hotels restaurant for at least coffee and cake to soak in the flair of the hotel.
Enjoy the view over the fjord called "Oslofjorden".
Enjoy the view over the fjord called “Oslofjorden”.
Aker Brygge is a dream in the summer. You sit down, drink a glass of white wine accompanied with fresh shrimps bought directly from the ships. In the wintertime it is perfect for a stroll or for visiting one of the many restaurants lined up along the shore. This is also where you take the boat of you want to visit the island "Nesodden" (you can take the boat back and forth to see Oslo from the ocean, a great experience).
Aker Brygge is a dream in the summer. You sit down, drink a glass of white wine accompanied by fresh shrimps bought directly from the ships. In the wintertime it is perfect for a stroll or for visiting one of the many restaurants lined up along the shore. This is also where you take the boat if you want to visit the island called “Nesodden” (you can take the boat back and forth to see Oslo from the oceanside, a great experience which takes more or less a half an hour one way).
The stronghold "Akershus Festning" is situated right next to Aker Brygge, providing a beautiful view over the fjord and telling an important history about  the nations development over the last 700 years.
The stronghold “Akershus Festning” is situated right next to Aker Brygge, providing a beautiful view over the fjord and telling an important history about the nations development over the last 700 years.
"The Diver" is watching over the Oslo fjord.
“The Diver” is watching over the Oslo fjord.
The norwegian designers behind "Moods of Norway" have opened their "Super Duper Store"s all over the world. But is there anything cooler then visiting a "Super Duper Store" in Norway? My answer is no.
The Norwegian designers behind “Moods of Norway” have opened their “Super Duper Store`s” all over the world. But is there anything cooler then visiting a “Super Duper Store” in Norway? My answer is no.

There is a lot more to Oslo then this, like for example a number of museums and galleries worth visiting, the sculpture park “Vigelandsparken” (which I love), the famous sport venue “Holmenkollen“, the amusement park “Tusenfryd“, the Nobel Peace Center…..I could go on and on. Visit the homepage of Visit Oslo for more information and tips on what to see and do in the city.

Getting to Oslo from around the world:

The main airport is Oslo Gardermoen Airport, situated only 19 min. from the city center. The airport has good connections to airports all over the world, and the airfares are, with some luck, often not as high as one might expect.

The prices in Norway:

Yes, the prices for food and clothes etc. are high in Norway. It is one of the most expensive countries in Europe for visitors. Search for hotels and restaurants a little outside of the main tourist area, and the prices will be ok. But don`t be shocked – it is expensive, but worth every cent!

God tur!

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

 

Christmas Market Magic in Heidelberg, Germany

The Christmas markets in Germany are famous and wonderful. Every little town and big city has one and all the markets have their own special personality. So has the one in Heidelberg – the well-known student city situated in southwest Germany with its castle and the river Neckar running through it. One of the most romantic cities in the country, if you ask me. This makes Heidelberg the perfect place to visit the Christmas market on. Romantic and historical surroundings meet pure Christmas magic!

The town hall shines in a golden glow behind one part of the market
The town hall shines in a golden glow behind one part of the market
Christmas magic in the "Altstadt" of Heidelberg!
Christmas magic in the “Altstadt” of Heidelberg!
With a selection like this on every corner it is impossible to resist!
With a selection like this on every corner it is impossible to resist!

I took a stroll through the Christmas market, and here are some of the highlights that I can recommend seeing/trying (the best way to experience a Christmas market is to eat your way through it!):

1. The “Glühwein” vs. the “Feuerzangenbowle” 

So the real question is: wine vs. rum? The Glühwein (mulled wine) is the most common drink on a Christmas market and it is an absolute “must-have” when visiting the market. In Heidelberg, the cups for the Glühwein changes every year (it rises the excitement and makes it a perfect collectors item). This is how it looks like this year:

The most famous drink on any Christmas market - the "Glühwein" (mulled wine)
The most famous drink on any Christmas market – the “Glühwein” (mulled wine)

The Feuerzangenbowle is a Glühwein with rum, made as follows: you take a sugarloaf and soak it with rum, then you set it on fire and the rum-soaked sugar drops down into the Glühwein. Need I say more – this is my absolute favorite!

Once every hour, the sugarloaf is soaked with rum and set on fire over the Glühwein - a show worth watching!
Once every hour, the sugarloaf is soaked with rum and set on fire over the Glühwein – a show worth watching!

2. Culinary highlights – go crazy eating 

Christmas is a time for good food. One of the most important things to do on a Christmas market, is eating! The offers are various and you will find everything your heart desires; sausages in all variations, steaks, Kartoffelpuffer (kind of a potato pancake), fish, chestnuts, Germknödel, Crêpes, fruits dipped in chocolate, waffles – I could go on forever. Here are some impressions to whet you appetite:

Bratwurst, Feuerwurst, Currywurst - you name it!
Bratwurst, Feuerwurst, Currywurst – you name it!
Kartoffelpuffer (potato pancakes) with cranberry cream and an alcohol-free alternative - cocao. I love it!
Kartoffelpuffer (potato pancakes) with cranberry cream and an alcohol-free alternative – cocao. I love it!
In this little train, hot chestnuts are sold - yammi!
In this little train, hot chestnuts are sold – yammi!
Sweet fruits covered with chocolate - just dig in!
Sweet fruits covered with chocolate – just dig in!

3. Christmas market shopping 

One thing is sure – on the Christmas market in Heidelberg, you can go crazy shopping. Handcrafts of all kinds are being offered, and this is the perfect place to buy Christmas presents and to get ideas for the ones who “have everything”. What about a crazy frog for the Christmas tree? Or would you prefer the rhino? I choose the more traditional alternatives.

This year, it is supposed to be crazy and colorful on the Christmas tree!
This year, it is supposed to be crazy and colorful on the Christmas tree!
Glas handcraft
Glas handcraft

4. Fun activities for everyone

The Christmas market in Heidelberg is the perfect playground for young and “not so young”. Ice-skating or merry-go-rounds, a train for children or a photo with Santa himself – it is all possible.

Ice-skating is one of the activities one can attend between the meals!
Ice-skating is one of the activities one can attend between the meals!

5. Enjoy the true magical Christmas spirit 

One of the most important things for me about the Christmas market is the whole feeling of it. When I visit the Christmas market for the first time every year, I really feel the Christmas magic filling me and I realize that Christmas is almost there. It is a great way to just calm down a little and get ready for the true spirit of Christmas – which for me is being with family and friends, enjoying the togetherness and appreciating all the great things I have in my life. This may sound a little over sensitive right now – but hey, please understand, I just came from the Christmas market!

The Christmas magic fills you (if you want it or not:-) on the Christmas market!
The Christmas magic fills you (if you want it or not:-) on the Christmas market!
Greetings from the Heidelberger Christmas market - a typical heart made of "Lebkuchen"
Greetings from the Heidelberger Christmas market – a typical heart made of “Lebkuchen”

So greetings from me from the Heidelberger Christmas market, I wish everyone a beautiful advent and a blessed Christmas time!

See you in 2015!

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

My bite of the big apple – NYC

Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothing you can’t do. 
Now you’re in New York, 
These streets will make you feel brand new 
Big lights will inspire you…   (Alicia Keys) 

I am standing in the middle of the big city life jungle, just watching everything and everyone rush by, and I feel alive. I`m in New York. Such an amazing feeling to just look up and feel the power of the skyscrapers drag you into a different “empire state of mind”.

Hustle and bustle on Times Square - fascinating place!
Hustle and bustle on Times Square – fascinating place!
A typical NYC yellow cab
A typical NYC yellow cab

There are a few things, visiting New York, that you can do to make your stay even more special and most of all, affordable. Here are my tips on how to enjoy New York like a smart traveler:

#1: the sky is the limit

The first question arising in my mind when I enter Manhattan is: how can I, as fast as possible, see this city from above. The most normal answer would be: go to the top of the Empire State building. But my advise is: go to the top of the Rockefeller Center! From there, you see much more of Manhattan and you have the Empire State building and the Chrysler building in front of you and not behind you, which provides you the best Manhattan view ever. Buy your ticket in advance to make sure that you`re able to enter on the day that you want.

Beautiful view from the "Top of the Rock"
Beautiful view from the “Top of the Rock”

#2: the liberty of the water 

One cannot be in NYC without taking a boat trip. If it`s not absolutely necesary for you to actually visit the Statue of Liberty, a good way of having an amazing boat experience, is taking the Staten Island Ferry. It takes 25 minutes one way and the ride is for free. You can go back and forth – having an incredible view of Manhattan, the Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn. My special tip: take the ferry when the sun is setting in the afternoon, the Skyline will look like its on fire. 

The Staten Island Ferry provides the best view of Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Statue of Liberty
The Staten Island Ferry provides the best view of Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Statue of Liberty

#3: in search of unknown alternatives 

After visiting New York several times, I wanted to discover something new that I hadn`t seen before. This time, my hotel happened to be situated in West Village, which for me turned out to be a great discovery. Make sure to visit the High Line (former train tracks turned into a nice green area) and the Chelsea Market. A great number of wonderful restaurant are lined up like pearls on a row, and the atmosphere is very different from uptown and downtown. The LGBT community is flowering here, which also is fascinating for someone coming from the outside.

This is one thing I really love about NYC, you can be who you are and dress how you like – you`ll just be considered cool or fashionable..or crazy, but in a good way.

A small market place inside the Chelsea Market
A small market place inside the Chelsea Market
Delicacies at the Chelsea Market - impossible to resist!
Delicacies at the Chelsea Market – impossible to resist!

#4: dare to get lost  

Some cities are not good to get lost in, but some cities are just waiting for you to wander off and be an adventurer. I took the ride to Brooklyn (because I missed my stop with the subway), and discovered the Brooklyn Heights Promenade and some parts of Brooklyn that I had never seen before. What a view! Then, I walked back over the Brooklyn Bridge and it took about a half an hour (and was very nice, even though very crowded).

Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge seen from Brooklyn
Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge seen from Brooklyn
Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge
Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge
Beautiful bay view with the Statue of Liberty as a backdrop
Beautiful bay view with the Statue of Liberty as a backdrop

Some things to be aware of when visiting NYC:

– the hotels are generally really expensive and the hotel rooms mostly much smaller then in other big cities in the States.

– when you read “continental breakfast”, don`t expect a continental breakfast as we know it in Europe or from other parts of the world. This will typically just be cereals, bagels with cream cheese, pastries and, if you`re lucky, some fruits. I read a lot of hotel reviews where people complain about the breakfast, but this is just something one needs to know before going there to adjust the expectations.

– NYC (especially uptown) is loud! If you have a hotel room with absolutely no noise, this is luck. For me, this is just a part of being in NY. If you are sensitive to noise when sleeping, make sure to buy earplugs.

– Life in NYC is fast! People walk around fast, they want you to be efficient when ordering and there is not a lot of patience. But, this is not necessarily rudeness, it`s just a part of the city culture. Most people are still very nice, though.

This is a city that I absolutely love, and I will never get tired of seeing the same things over and over again. There is always something to discover and I can truly say – it is one of my favorite cities in the U.S.

Thank you to my travel companion this time, my wonderful husband. It was great being on the road with you!

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

The One Lovely Blog Award – highly appreciated!

Opening my emails last week I got a great surprise: the blogger Travels and Tomes nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award! Thank you very much, it made me very happy and grateful, and I give it right back in your direction. Great job and have fun in Germany!

These are the rules for the nominated bloggers:

The One Lovely Blog Award nominations are chosen by fellow bloggers for those newer and up-and-coming bloggers. The goal is to help give recognition and also to help the new blogger to reach more viewers. It also recognizes blogs that are considered to be “lovely”–bloggers who share their story or thoughts in a beautiful manner to connect with viewers and followers.  In order to “accept the award” the nominated blogger must

  • Thank the person who nominated you for the award.
  • Add the One Lovely Blog logo to your post.
  • Share 7 facts/or things about yourself
  • Nominate up to 15 bloggers you admire and inform the nominees by commenting on their blog

#1: Thank you, Travels and Tomes, you are lovely and I appreciate your support a lot!

#2: it`s such a lovely logo – I am happy to add it:-)

#3: 7 facts about me, here they are:

  • I am born and raised in the north of Norway on a small island called Hadsel (read about it on this blog – it was my first post ever)
  • I live in Germany and I have been here for 11 years (oh god, time flies)
  • I work with tourism marketing and travel the world for business and pleasure
  • Music is my big passion except of traveling and writing
  • Together with my husband (Mc Sesman, a great Chilean rapper), I have the band SUAVE (check it out on Facebook/suave.band), where I sing and play different instruments
  • My very best friend in the world is my mom and we talk on the phone every day
  • I love to dance!

Enough about me! Let`s get some other nominations going. I would like to nominate:

waterfallsandcaribous.com (great pictures and a bit “different” and including good food which is always great)

benrogerswpg.wordpress.com (not really new, but the pictures blow me away, so I have to nominate it)

threadbare21.wordpress.com (I like the mixture of travel and fashion)

Darwin on the rocks and around the world (very sweet design and style. I also like the pictures and the destinations)

Bama – what an amazing world (a well established blog, but I like it and would like to nominate it)

msworldwanderer.wordpress.com (apart of posting great content, her motto is:  “Not all those who wander are lost” – J.R.R. Tolkien – that is wonderful)

Love, Sara (it`s crazy and I don`t get it – which in this case is a good thing. The videos are funny)

thethingsiamcrazyfor.wordpress.com (I just like it!)

smilesaremadeofthese.wordpress.com (sometimes, when less is more and it works, it`s beautiful)

I could go on forever, but I am going to stop here. I am happy to be a part of the blogger family and I wish you all, from the deepest of my heart, all the best and safe travels!

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Barcelona adventure

It was the mussels. They were perfect. I just love the feeling of sitting in a restaurant, being hungry, seeing the waiter arrive with the food, trying it – and then – feeling immediately that it is one of the best things you ever tasted. If this is accompanied with a delicious Rioja, I can be considered the happiest woman on earth for a moment. The restaurant was Rossini on Plaça Reial close to La Rambla in Barcelona.

My top favorite - Plaça Reial - even beautiful in the evening rain
My top favorite – Plaça Reial – even beautiful in the evening rain

Barcelona for me was good food and wine, Flamenco, Gaudi (his work blew me away) and my lovely travel companion – my mom. Finally we got to go to Barcelona together, which we have been talking about for so long. Carpe Diem!

There are a few practical things one should know before visiting Barcelona for the first time, here are a few tips:

Tip #1: You simply cannot visit Barcelona without seeing the Park Güell and Sagrada Familia (the famous cathedral). But you should know, it is not that easy getting in, especially to the Sagrada Familia. I went there on a saturday and didn`t get tickets until the following monday. Be smarter, buy tickets online before you go to Barcelona – that way you make sure to get in when you want to. You can buy the tickets here.

Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia
Sagrada Familia

Tip #2: when visiting the Park Güell, do not only see the part of the park that you need to pay to get in to. Take your time, stroll around the free part of the park, sit down and listen to the various musicians playing in the park and just enjoy. For me, this park was as close to meditation I will ever be – just wonderful.

Listening to a wonderful musician in Park Güell
Listening to a wonderful musician in Park Güell
Park Güell
Park Güell
Park Güell
Park Güell
Park Güell
Park Güell

Tip #3: leave the Rambla! In the side streets, there are wonderful hidden gems and stores to discover. I liked the street called Calle Girona – lots of outlets and nice little stores to get lost in.

The secrets of the side streets
The secrets of the side streets
A bubble fairy tail
A bubble fairy tail

Tip #4: see the flamenco show at Tarantos (Plaça Reial)! The show cost only 10 € and last 30 minutes, with wonderful musicians and dancers (it is a small club with a small stage, but the show gave me absolute goose bumps). The shows on La Rambla are grand, but they will cost you over 40 € and the cozy atmosphere at Tarantos really appealed more to me then the grand feeling. Pure emotions!

Flamenco in Tarantos - pure emotions
Flamenco in Tarantos – pure emotions

Tip #5: it was very touristy, but to take the Bus Tourístic is a wonderful experience if you want to see a lot in a short amount of time (and especially without walking a lot). I must say, I enjoyed it!

Casa Batlló of Gaudi
Casa Batlló of Gaudi
BARCELONA picture from the bus
BARCELONA picture from the bus

It was a great adventure – and I thank my mother that I got to share this adventure with her. I love you, mom!

A perfect match - me and my mom
A perfect match – me and my mom

Dare to make your dreams come true – the journey starts with a single step!

– Charlotte –

 

 

Travel – Life – Food – Drink – Music – Fun!

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