One of my favorite travel hacks is how easy and affordable it is to fly within Europe. When my boyfriend came to visit me for a week in Italy, we were looking for places to travel to and of course we had to visit Malta. We were on a time crunch, but we were ready for adventure.
We ended up booking our trip from Milan to Malta for 2 days where we stayed at Plaza Regency Hotel. Our trip was quick as we planned a sunset tour one day and the rest, we were ready to go with the flow.
Arriving in Malta
We booked a taxi from the airport that took us right to the hotel which was about 15 minutes away. Looking back, I would suggest doing the bus because you can get a feel as a local and it is way cheaper. But, we wanted to get right to our destination so we did not do that. Sometimes it’s just easier and more comfortable to grab a quick taxi.
Dinner and a Sunset Tour
Our trip was a quick one as we flew in early evening around 5:30pm, and went out for dinner at L’ Ostricaio Balluta. We ordered a shrimp pasta dish and a lobster pasta with a bottle of wine, of course. If you’re looking for a restaurant by the water, this is the place to go when you visit Malta!
The following day we enjoyed our time by the beach, soaked up the sun, grabbed a snack, and then headed to our sunset tour.
We booked our reservation through Get Your Guide, Camino: Blue Lagoon, Crystal Lagoon, and Sea Caves Tour where we snorkeled, had one too many drinks, and a yummy dinner on the boat. Our dinner was included with the tour tickets, but we did have to put down a security deposit for snorkeling that we got back once equipment was returned. This is one thing you have to do when you visit Malta!
We headed out the following day to the airport, severely hungover, where we thought we would try the buses back. Instead of taking two buses, we took three which honestly isn’t too bad looking back on it now. At the time, we were stressed, and I thought I lost my phone, but it all worked out as we got to the airport on time, and my phone was indeed with me!
Plans to return
I would definitely go back to Malta as it is a small island, but there’s so many more things to see and do. Next time, I would love to see more architecture, visit the capital, Mdina, and maybe even scuba dive! This blog post has great ideas to things to see!
So you plan on going to Slovenia, but you don’t know which places to visit in Slovenia… You’ve come to the right place.
The perfect getaway that includes being close to Lake Bled, surrounded by beautiful scenery, delicious food, and a hot tub right outside your room, you NEED to go glamping at Garden Village, Green Resort and Restaurant in Slovenia.
Types of Accommodations
Glamping is like glorious camping… Here you can pick options that range from treehouse, to pier house, to a tent space that sleeps a range of people. We stayed in a tent that slept 5 of us comfortably. You won’t regret booking accommodation here or putting this down as one of your places to visit in Slovenia.
Staff and food is unmatched
Upon arrival, the staff was warn and welcoming. After checking in, we visited the restaurant where we had fresh food as they grow their own fruits and vegetables on the land. It’s one of the best places to visit in Slovenia.
You can check out more here regarding the locally sourced food they use. “From seed to plate”, you cannot go wrong with eating at this high quality restaurant that sources the food locally. We love and support those kind of places.
One night we ate at the restaurant, and had an amazing meal prepped by the staff. Although I don’t remember what it all was, it was definitely delicious. If you don’t stay here, definitely come here for one of your places to visit in Slovenia for the restaurant experience.
We stayed here for about 2 days and wandered the village to see what was around. The treehouse rooms look amazing to stay in, but I did love the hot tub our tent room had.
Heading into Lake Bled
Walking from the village to Lake Bled was about a 10 minute walk. There’s convenience stores to grab food as well as activities to do on the lake.
We took a boat ride to the island in the center of the lake which has the Church of Assumption, a museum to tour, and a 99 step stairway. It took about 20 minutes to paddle to and then you can walk around and tour the island. Some boat tours have time limits so you have to be aware of how long you’re out there.
Lake Bled is an absolute must see, so add it to your list of places to visit in Slovenia!
Triglav National Park
There’s also a hiking trail we did that lasted about 2-3 hours. You do have to drive here, and I’m not sure if there’s any busses or trains that can bring you here. So keep that in mind when choosing your places to visit in Slovenia.
It was a long hike but absolutely gorgeous. There are hiking trails in the municipality of Gorje in Triglav National Park and this was just one we picked. We walked along the rushing water and found fish swimming, headed into a small town with cows, and made our way back to the car. It sounds a lot simpler than it was. It was a variety of steepness, roughness, and scenery.
After traveling to 14 countries, I wanted to share the top 4 best places to travel to! Read until the end to find some travel hacks!
There are so many beautiful places out there that have so much to offer and I love every place I’ve been to. But, I’m going to break this down into 4 categories that are specific to my experiences. The categories I came up with are favorite architecture, favorite activities, favorite food, and most unique experience. All of these should be on your bucket list as they are the best places to travel to!
Prague, Czech Republic
Lake Como, Italy
Now can you guess which city/country matches which category?
This was pretty easy to choose because the moment I walked over Charles Bridge, I fell in love with Prague, Czech Republic. Ever since I was a sophomore in college in 2018, I wanted to travel to Prague. And I had that chance when my brother and I backpacked Europe in 2021.
If you need ideas for how to pack for a backpacking trip, check this out!
The architecture was different than anything I’ve ever seen as it was built in the Gothic and Renaissance era. Even though I haven’t seen all of the Harry Potter movies (we’re on number 3), I just felt like I was in a character in the movie. It was so beautiful, so magical, and super easy to navigate!
We took the Lime scooters all around town and saw all the main attractions. Within two days of being there, we did a total of 7+ miles on the lime scooters. For my Beatles fans, John Lennon has a wall that surrounds the seat of Maltese Order and in the 1960s, messages appeared here as he was perceived as a symbol of freedom during the regime.
HACK: Czech people are super friendly and welcoming! Check out Hostel Downtown for the perfect location of being in the heart of the city. Remember, it’s cheaper to book a dorm room than it is to book a private room. Always worth a shot to look at both!
Now, this is hard… So many places have tons of things to do and it really depends on what you’re in the mood for. I decided to choose a place where most of our adventures were spontaneous.
And the place I’m choosing is Chania, Crete, Greece!
Honestly, when I think of Greece, I think of the whitewashed buildings in Santorini. As you probably do to. However, that is not the case in Chania, Crete. We had a girls weekend at this location because it was one of the more affordable places for us to go. We booked the flight and hostel, and found places to go to via this video on YouTube. Thanks to That Greek Guy!
One of my favorite things was take a day trip to visit Balos Beach. Now, this isn’t any old beach. This was an ADVENTURE.
First of all, we had to drive along the coast (not a paved road) and pay to get in. There were goats along the way and we had to drive maybe 15 minutes to get to the parking lot. Once we were at the parking lot, so many more goats showed up!
We didn’t know the extent of the hiking so, if you go to Balos Beach, bring sneakers! Us four girls were walking in flip flops down the mountain to get to the beach. But, the views and water was absolutely worth it.
The next thing we did was visit Kourtaliotis waterfall. Again, more hiking as you had to go down a stairway, but the views and journey to get there was so fun. The water was freezing, but of course we had to go in!
Once you get to the swimming pool area, there’s a cave you can swim through to see the waterfall.
After this, we went to Kalypso beach where you can actually stay in the hotel, but we just went for a few hours.
After these adventurous days, we decided to stay more in the downtown area and got some tattoos, yummy food, and some shopping! It was a quick weekend, but filled with so much adventure. Definitely one of my favorite trips.
HACK: Some people were surprised we chose to travel here because again when people want to visit Greece, they choose the more popular cities like Santorini, Athens, etc. Nothing is wrong with tha, but this is just a great city to try out if you want to get away from the crowds of people, and experience a quieter island.
Okay, I lied. I said my favorite activity spot was hard to choose. Nope, favorite food is hard to pick because I love food and there’s TONS of options.
The winner for this will probably have to be Lake Como, Italy. Traveling here for a quick 2 day trip was nowhere near enough time! One day it was rainy and gloomy, but we still walked around, checked out the churches, and shops.
However, there’s this train called the Como- Brunate Funicular Railway that takes passengers from the bottom of the lake, up the hill to a town that has an amazing restaurant that overlooks the lake. Apparently, you can hike down instead of returning back down the mountain on the railway. This is something I want to try next time I visit!
We went up in the evening for dinner so we didn’t see much of the views of the lake, but the food was delicious. We ate at the Trattoria Dei Bracconieri Brunate and we started with a tasty meat plate and got two pasta dishes. Of course we had a wine, and if I remember correctly it was a fizzy red wine. The whole experience, meal, and service was 10 out of 10.
My advice, go during the day to see the amazing views.
This is an easy one because it’s a place that a lot of people questioned me about. “Are you sureeee you want to go there?” “Why there?”
Let me tell you why…
In the Western world, Islam is not talked about very often so I have had limited exposure to it. And when it is talked about, it’s usually negative.
However, I don’t have any negative experiences after visiting Oman. My perspective grew and I appreciated their culture more than ever.
To dive into it, we visited Muscat, Oman freshman year of college for a week long “preview” trip. This is what my college did to get a taste of study abroad. Quite, genius actually. The week we (my class and I) had spent was definitely a trip of a lifetime and just like anywhere, you have to be aware of what’s happening in your surroundings.
So, to start this week-long trip we flew into Muscat, and then moved to the coast for a couple days, then the sand desert, and finished in the mountains. We had an amazing tour guide and native from Oman, Said, who taught us all about the culture and took us around his beautiful country. We were also led by Jeff Rose, an archaeologist who dedicated most of his career to find human migration out of Africa and Arabia. My eyes have never been wider and ears have never listened more.
Being an outsider in a new country, it is crucial to have respect for the people and culture. We were lucky enough to go inside the Grand Mosque where we had to take off our shoes, cover our hair, and wear long pants and shirts.
Before prayer, there is a purification ritual that includes washing the face, hands, arms and feet. Said also sang the Quran which was so beautiful to listen to even though I didn’t understand what he was saying.
Did I forget to mention we went dune bashing, swam in caves, and rode camels?? When I say this was a trip of a lifetime, it was just that. A TRIP OF A LIFETIME.
Shout out to my professors and classmates who was along with me on this trip. Comment your favorite part about it <3
I think all trips are the trip of a lifetime because it’s all so different and unique in it’s own way. Whether you’re going to a new restaurant, traveling a few hours away, or going to the opposite side of the world.. It’s all so special and should never be taken for granted!
Okay, to summarize… Remember to always look at hostels. The community within hostels is so fun and you meet so many amazing people. Enjoy the journey because traveling can be stressful but enjoy the time as it’s just as important. Don’t be afraid to go somewhere that’s a more quiet street (or city) because there is just as much beauty, probably better food, and better prices. (cough, cough, side streets in Venice.) Continue your search on google flights and skyscanner. I hope you find the best deals.
Talk to the local people, they’re the best ones to meet!
P.S. You didn’t say Australia?!
If you know me, you know I studied abroad in Australia in 2021. And yes, you’re right… that is definitely one of the best places to travel to.
Spending less than 24 hours in Venice is a quick trip. Of course, you can spend a few more days here to enjoy more of it, but if you’re in a time crunch like my boyfriend and I then here is what you can do to see the city in a day.
Heading into Venice
Of course you can drive into Venice and park in a parking structure, but the best way to go about traveling here is by train. Bikes are nowhere to be found in Venice, since there are so many bridges and narrow streets! You can’t beat the price of less than $2 a person from Venezia Mestre to Venezia Santa Lucia. (Tip: download TrainLine for ways to get around Europe.) Going by train is the perfect way to head into the city because once you head out of the train station, below is the view you see and you can walk wherever you would like.
Getting our day started…
It was early morning for us so we had 11 hours to walk through the city. As soon as we got out of the train station, we took a left to the S. Maria di Nazareth church next door.
It’s free to walk through so of course we had to check it out. Afterwards, we walked across the main bridge by S. Maria di Nazareth (pictured above) and enjoyed the view of the Grand Canal.
While we were standing on the bridge, there was a Global Climate Strike that was happening right outside the train station. We watched that, and then went to find breakfast which is really just a pastry and cappuccino from a small cafe. I always get the chocolate croissant, but if that’s not available they have a marmalade pastry that is just as delicious. I can taste it now.
We continued walking towards Saint Mark’s Square where the main shops are located and more beautiful buildings like Saint Mark’s Basilica, Saint Mark’s Bell Tower, etc! Did you know Venice sits on top of 10 million tree trunks?!
It can be confusing to walk through these narrow streets, but there are signs on the edge of buildings if you look closely. (Tip: Use GoogleMaps to get around too.) I have been to Venice before, so I had a rough idea of where things are.
My boyfriend and I enjoy good food- how can you not?! Looking at the picture above, we took a right and went all the way to the water. We found local artists, selling their work and so I bought this beautiful picure.
We wanted yummy Italian food so while we were walking around we ate at this restaurant near the water, down a main street. Sorry- don’t remember the name! It’s been a while.
After lunch, we decided to go up the tower. Saint Mark’s Bell Tower is beautiful to look at from below. However, for about $20/ person you can go up the tower and overlook the beautiful city. We took an elevator up, and spent time looking at every angle the view had to offer. Then, you wait in line to head back down the elevator.
Before heading to the train station to go to Milan, we grabbed dinner at a small restaurant that was hidden in the streets of Venice. Of course we grabbed Carbonara pasta, and wine. Unfortunately, we did not take pictures of this and I don’t remember where we had it, but if you find restaurants that are hidden in the streets- those are the places to go! The places along the water and and near main attractions will be much more expensive.
Book that train to Venice!
Wherever you are in the world, book that plane or train! One thing you will never regret is the things you see and people you meet. The memories I make traveling are my favorite things to think about. There are ways to travel on the cheaper side, so look on google flights or skyscanner and have a great time!