After finalizing back-to-school plans a few months back one of the first things on my to-do list was booking a trip overseas. It had been too long! And after researching locations and manipulating itineraries I landed on a combination of new and old, with stops in London, Dublin and Nice.
London was the first stop, and where I met up with local Londoner, Emily! So fun to see an old friend in her new(ish) home!
I fought jet lag thanks to the exceptional cappuccino machine in Emily’s office and powered through some favorite tourist spots from my time studying abroad. I soaked in the sites from Soho to Trafalgar Square, with stops at the British Museum and National Gallery along the way. The National Gallery is really something – even the entry floor is decked out!
Ireland was next on the itinerary: a solo trip! I explored the streets of Dublin, with historic stops at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Trinity College and Temple Bar. The Church Bar – a very straightforward yet endearing concept – was also on my list of tourist stops. And since I was still battling sleep depravation, the tea and burger combo really kept me going. After some more rest the Jameson Distillery tastings were also just delightful.
From Dublin I took a much anticipated tour to the countryside to see sheep and the Cliffs of Moher. Very cool! The cliffs stretch five miles and at their highest point tower 702 ft. with essentially a sheer drop into the Atlantic.
It was raining on and off all day, but luckily whenever it was time to explore the sun was out. The cliffs were the main attraction, but the tour also made other stops in Doolin, Galway (pictured) and a few other “I have no idea where I am without WiFi” off-road scenic lookouts (also pictured). Overall, a highly enjoyable excursion!
After an active few days in Ireland I met up with Emily again to travel together to Nice, France. Quite a few highlights, like that French Riviera view!
From Nice we took a local bus ride up the mountain to Eze – a medieval village on the Cote d’Azur. We hiked up the cobblestone streets and with each set of stairs were greeted with a new view of the Mediterranean or set of art galleries and shops to pop into. It was so cool!
At the top of the village we entered the botanical garden, Jardin Exotique d’Eze, which was chock-full of cacti, succulents and even better views. Totally worth the multiple treks up and down the village steps to actually locate the entrance.
Back in Nice we rested up at Emilie & the Cool Kids Cafe (couldn’t resist) and later made our way to the Museum of Modern Art. Multiple cappuccinos in traditional and gelato form were also enjoyed – because why not?!
Then my trip wrapped up with a stereotypical dreary day back in London. The rain still couldn’t damped our tour through the city with stops at Pritchard + Ure for a delightful cafe brunch, shopping at Selfridges and Primark (two extremes), the Portrait Gallery, Hyde Park and a Camden Fringe comedy show. So fun!
Overall the trip was such a success – a highly enjoyable combo of city and country, off-road and mainstream, running around and relaxation. And probably only got scammed once on a just-a-little-bit sketchy cab ride in Nice.