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10 THINGS TO EXPECT IN BALI.

Friday, 14 June 2019

From being savvy about moneys to navigating hefty crowds, there are a few tricks you can learn to really get the best out of your next visit to Bali. Here’s our top list!

1. Be prepared for crowds.

Golden Hour
Image Source: Pexels
Bali is one of the most touristed islands on our planet! While it is difficult to escape the heaving crowds, if you’re determined to find solitude, you will succeed. There are still plenty of secluded corners beyond big tourist areas like Ubud. Our top tip is to head to the central mountains, or even the west or north coasts.

2. Carefully consider your base.

Put some thought into where you plan on basing yourself. You’re in for hot weather and bustling traffic, so you might want to stick close to your accommodation so you can wander around on foot easily enough. Consider Bali villas by Cantik as the perfect base from which to explore the islands.

3. Expect a bout of Bali belly.


It used to be that things like meat, ice cubes and salads would bring on bouts of Bali belly. Expect it, but here’s some good news. Hygiene standards have improved significantly across the island and you can now get good quality organic produce. Just remember to stay hydrated, possibly stay away from street food and, at all costs, avoid the local liquor called arak.

4. Get dressed up.


Beachwear isn’t the norm in every spot in Bali. Some of the high-end restaurants, clubs and bars actually do enforce a dress code. If you’re not sure, you can always phone the place you plan to visit and find out ahead of time.

5. Respect the customs.


Religion is a very big deal in Bali. Don’t get worked up when you come across a blocked-off street where a ceremony’s being held, or your taxi driver pulls over to make a quick blessing. It’s all part of Bali life. Look up the main events before deciding when to visit. Nyepi, for example, sees everything in Bali, even the airport, completely closing down for the day. Remember to dress modestly, too, especially when visiting holy sites and temples.



Image Source: Unsplash


6. Prepare for varied prices.


You definitely can visit Bali on a tight budget, but you can just as easily spend big on spa treatments and delicious meals. The best tip is to look out for online discounts, coupons and happy hour specials.

7. Watch out for the wildlife.


Give way to wild and stray animals. Sure, they’re cute, but they could have rabies and other diseases, and those Bali monkeys are notorious thieves!


8. Stay away from plastic bottles.


Bali is hot and humid, which means you need to stay hydrated. Just consider the environment before you buy another plastic bottle. Instead, help reduce litter on Bali beaches and in towns and get yourself a stainless-steel, refillable bottle that’ll keep your water cold, too.

9. Learn a few words.


A few basic words of Indonesian will go a long way during your travels.

10. You’re expected to bargain.


There are plenty of services and items you’re expected to Bargain for in Bali. Just be respectful about it. Figure out when a vendor has reached their limit with bargaining and stop right there. If you’re in any doubt, rather walk away. If the vendor doesn’t run after you, just know they’re not going to drop their price more.



Image Source: Pixabay


With these 10 tips, you’re sure to get more out of your Bali visits.

5 ITEMS THAT HAVE MADE MY LIFE EASIER WHEN TRAVELLING.

Monday, 27 May 2019

Back in February when I left Gibraltar to go travelling, and packed up half of my life to move to Australia, the biggest decision I probably had to make was - what do I actually need to bring with me? I'm quite the hoarder and get sentimentally attached to things so choosing what to bring and what to leave behind wasn't easy (sadly my 'Marie' from the Aristocats plush toy didn't make the cut). Reflecting on my trip to Asia, these are some of the items that I feel were necessities and made life a whole lot easier. 

tep wireless

1. Tep Wireless Internet device


If you're travelling out of your country (or somewhere that your mobile data doesn't cover) then I 100% recommend using Tep Wireless*. When planning Japan my main issue was transport, as I heard that English signage at the stations was lacking. Luckily with Tep, whenever we decided we had to get somewhere I could quickly jump on Google Maps or Rome2Rio and it would sort out all the hard work for me. Having unlimited Wi-Fi everywhere we went also meant I become 'Uber girl' 'Check if there are any gluten free restaurants in the area girl' and 'The first one to upload our photos on Instagram girl'. 

The process is simple. You choose whether you want to buy or rent a Tep device, tell them what destinations you are going to be visiting and how long for. The most popular data package works out $12.95 a day for unlimited internet. If you're someone who is on the go a lot and you are constantly moving countries, then I'd recommend buying the device - it would save you buying mobile numbers in each country! 

2. Packing cubes


These have been a life saver not only to keep things organised and easy to find in my backpack, but also because when 'unpacking' at our Airbnbs I pretty much just stacked them in the wardrobe and got what I needed from each one. Making it that much easier and quicker to pack up again when it was time to move. These are inexpensive and come in a range of colours that you can find on Amazon

3. A J Shaped Neck Pillow 


When I flew on short haul trips I never really bothered with a neck pillow, as I didn't really feel like they made much of a difference anyway and I have a pretty giraffe-esque neck so I could never get comfortable. Then when J Pillow reached out about collaboration I thought, well this might come in handy for the 8+ hour flights. The difference with this is that it supports your neck, chin and head. So you can get pretty comfy whether you're on the window, middle or aisle seat. 

4. A comfortable backpack


There is a lot of research, blogs and variety out there when it comes to choosing a good backpack to go travelling with. Of course all the pretty and good ones will cost you over £100, but then I stumbled upon this simple Cabin Max beauty on Amazon that only set me back £30 (well, my mum as it was one of my Christmas gifts). After carrying it around 8 airports, using my upper body strength to chuck it in the overhead locker 10 times, and using it for my little trips here and there in Australia - I can confirm that I will be keeping it for my 3 month trip to Asia too as it has served me well.  

5. A Kindle 


I think this has been a great travel item, but not so great for my bank account because since I don't have to worry about carrying them around, I can just keep buying them. Before I had a kindle everything used to be filled to the brim of my little backpack because I always needed to carry a book in there too, now I can open and close my bag without risking my headphones or sweets falling out. 

What are some of your favourite travel items and gadgets to pack?

G




*Items marked where gifted to me but all opinions are my own. 

A LOW CARB AUBERGINE (OR EGGPLANT) LASAGNA RECIPE.

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

I stopped doing recipes on my blog once I finished university and moved back home, I think the last one may have been a white fish soup one. Truthfully, when I moved back to Gibraltar I probably only cooked omelettes, chicken and made buddha bowls, because with my mum and grandmother around there wasn't really a need for me to cook much. Now that I'm living on my own in Brisbane and have a very nice kitchen to make a mess in, I've enjoyed experimenting with more things and meal prepping and all that grown up stuff. 

If like me, you love Italian food but also know it wouldn't be great for our hips to eat pasta at every meal, then this is a great alternative recipe to traditional lasagna. Luckily, I love cheese equally as much as carbs so even though this is a vegetable substitute it's still delicious and filling. I've also taken the liberty of calculating the macros and calories per serving for you guys (thanks to MyFitnessPal) so if you're tracking/a gym buff don't worry, I've got you. 

low carb aubergine lasagna

INGREDIENTS 

  • 4 Aubergines/Eggplants 
  • 500g of turkey mince (or beef) 
  • Chicken or beef stock
  • Mushrooms 
  • 1 red onion 
  • 2 garlic cloves 
  • Can of chopped Italian tomatoes 
  • Passata sauce (I got Italian herb but you can use any)
  • Bechamel (jar or homemade) 
  • Mozzarella



METHOD  


1. Preheat the oven to 180'C

2. Slice the aubergines lengthwise in 1/3 inch slices. Depending on your dish size you should aim for 15 slices to make the layers. 

3. Wash the aubergine slices, and place them on a sheet of kitchen paper. Drizzle some pink himalayan salt (or your regular salt) and place another sheet of kitchen paper on top. Press down and leave for 10 minutes to drain out the liquid from them. 

4. Heat up a pan with olive oil. Chop up the onion, garlic and mushrooms and toss into the pan. Keep on a low-medium heat and after a few minutes throw the mince into the pan. 

5. Once the meat has turned brown, pour in the can of tinned tomatoes, crumble the stock in and add salt and pepper and any other seasonings you wish to use. Leave to simmer on low heat. 

6. Grab a baking tray and spread the aubergine slices on it. Drizzle a bit of olive oil on each (I use spray) and bake them for 7-8 minutes on each side. 

7. Now for the fun part! Layer your lasagna however you wish. Mine went something like aubergines - tomato - drizzle of bechamel - lots of mozzarella - mince mixture - and repeat.

8. Place dish in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until top layer is a beautiful crispy brown. 

low carb aubergine lasagna


CALORIES PER SERVING | 527
CARBS | 39g
PROTEIN | 51.3g
FAT | 17.8g


 Have you ever tried to make this before? I'd love to hear your alternative recipes! 

G


low carb eggplant lasagna

5 RESTAURANTS AND CAFES TO VISIT IN MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA.

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

When I think of food in Australia - I think healthy, colourful and creative. When you're travelling with a Vegan and Celiac, your restaurant choices tend to be a bit more niche and the menus usually tend to be a bit more creative. Whether you're looking for something instagrammable, or want to eat out without consuming all of your daily calorie intake in one meal, here are some options for every craving. 


Queen Victoria Market 


Ok so this isn't technically a restaurant, but if you're not really sure what you fancy eating then head here where you can choose from more than 10 different cuisines from across the globe. I shared halloumi fries, pavlova and paella with my friend, and I may have had a bubble tea too. There's usually live music too and a bunch of stalls and fresh produce for you to look at. 

queen victoria market


Pablo Escoburgers


My friend came across this place on Instagram after someone posted about their 'controversial' burgers in ode to Pablo Escobar. One of which comes with a dollar bill and a 'line of cocaine'. This was a pretty funky place, and the bartender creates a signature cocktail for you based on your preferences. We ended up spending around $45 each at this place, so it's not the cheapest of restaurants, but at least your burger will look good on the gram. 

pablo escoburgers


Ground Yourself Cafe


We stumbled accross this place on our way to get our nails done, and it was a delight. They have a large breakfast selection, smoothie and acai bowls and a selection of buddha bowls. I got the Superfood Salad lunch special for $10 which came with quinoa, cauliflower, goji, beetroot, kale, pickled grapes, toasted seeds and almond hummus. It was delicious. 

ground yourself cafe


Banff 


If it's Italian you're after, then head to Banff in St Kinda for an inexpensive plate of pizza or pasta. They usually have offers on, such as $7 pizzas on Monday and Tuesday. They have an interesting concept called 'paper bag pasta' where your pasta is served...in a bag. I didn't get to experience it first hand, as I went for the Chicken & Pesto Risotto and it was molto delizioso.

banff st kilda

Sister of Soul 


This was probably my favourite and most delicious out of all of them. Even though we had initially planned to go for lunch, the breakfast menu looked so good that all 5 of us picked something from there. I had the French Toast which was no ordinary french toast, it came with vegan 'honeycomb', gelato, fruit and of course maple syrup (and some flowers that I assumed were edible). The Snickers Smoothie Bowl that my friend chose looked heavenly too. 

sister of soul


Have you been to any of these? What are some of your favourite spots in Melbourne?

G


melbourne food spots



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