London’s Best Brunch Spots

Brunch is definiately my favourite meal of the day, everything about it is amazing from the fresh coffee, avocado’s and eggs to the surroundings at some of the best places you can go for brunch.

When you live in London finding a great place for brunch can be a very daunting task, but here I’ve done all of the hard work for you and written about five of my favourite brunch places so you don’t have to guess where to go!

Eggbreak

There aren’t many places where I really want to go back for breakfast because eggs are eggs, no matter where you go, right?

Well Eggbreak is in a different league. Settled in a quiet street just 2 minutes from Notting Hill Gate station, this small but absolutly charming place will make you come back for more. They serve meals all day, from breakfast to dinner so you can also order granola and a burger toghether. But when it comes to brunch forget about ordering avocado with eggs on toast and expect something totally different like Shashuka, Turkish or Levantine eggs or their cornflake french toast which will blow your mind. My favourite combination is definitely the sweet potato rosti with goat’s cheese, honey, kale, pinenuts and dill yoghurt.

The only downside of this place is that they don’t accept bookings so the queue can be pretty big. However to get around this they recently introduced a text service with queue numbers. You register your name and give your phone number to them and they will then text you when your table is available. Waiting won’t be too hard as you are close to the colourful and instagramable streets of Notting Hill that you can explore while you wait.

30 Uxbridge St, Kensington, London W8 7TA

Avobar

London’s first all-avo dining concept started as a pop-up but now has a permanent site in Covent Garden.  Avobar does pretty much what it says – it’s a restaurant where everything on the menu has avocado in it, on it or blended into it. Aside from all the food, you’ll also be able to ‘gram the lush interiors – imagine a California cool vibe plus a load of avocado-based skincare products from the cutesy little in-house shop. There are plants and green tiles everywhere and the wooden seats are lined with colourful and tropical-looking cushions to create a cosy atmosphere.

If that is not enough to get you there ASAP, Avobar sources their avocados ethically and sustainably working with growers and farmers all over the world.

Avobar, 23-24 Henrietta Street, London, WC2

Dayrooms Cafe

Dayrooms Cafe is a tiny venue on Kensington Park Road. Aussie inspired, it’s a stylish and relaxed cafe, offering fresh and healthy brunch dishes that are interesting and full of flavour. Every dish is beautifully presented, making this one of the most instagrammable brunches in London. The interior is well-lit with plants, a turquoise tiled floor and wicker light shades. On a sunny day, the two tables outside are the perfect spot for people watching.  No matter what you choose from the menu you won’t be dissapointed but I would recommend their sticky sesame chicken roll for brunch after 12pm and for something lighter – smoked salmon royal croissaint.

Dayrooms Cafe,212 Kensington Park Road, London, W111NR

Granger & CO

Granger & Co is a global Australia cafe from Bill Granger with branches in places like Honolulu, Sydney and Tokyo. In London, we are lucky enough to have four located in Clarkenwell, Chelsea,Kings Cross and Notting Hill. I had heard great things about Granger & Co, with their fluffy ricotta pancakes and scrambled eggs making people swoon but I put off visiting this place for so long mainly because the long queues are start from the early morning.  One weekend we got up really early and got there at (what we thought is early), 9:30. There was no queue but also no tables. I can say we were lucky enough to get a bar seat because as soon as we sat down there was 10+ people already waiting. We opted for the famous pancakes (of course) and simple scrambled eggs on sourdough toast.

I now understand why people queue.

The pancakes were definitely the best pancakes I’ve ever tried and eggs were so rich and buttery. Delicious! I can’t recommend Granger & Co. enough. Get there early if you don’t want to queue but know that it’s worth the wait.

Granger & Co, 175 Westbourne Grove,Notting Hill London W11 

Ivy Chelsea Garden

As you might know, Ivy is a chain of restaurants around London. I could easily write about any other location but I chose the one in Chelsea because of its interior. Colourfully decorated with a beautiful garden terrace area, it’s a lovely spot to fuel up with their extensive breakfast menu till 11:30, or weekend brunch. I would recommend pancakes (surprise) but no matter what you choose you won’t be disapointed.

However, the real highlight is the exterior that displays a different seasonal floral instalation reguraly seen on many London influencer’s snaps.

195 -197 King’s Rd, Chelsea, London SW3 5EQ

 Skinny Kitchen

Ibiza-originated restaurant group, owned by former personal trainer Joel Belchemand his wife Louise, is bringing its brand of hip clean eating and Ibiza mantra of “Eat Clean, Rave Dirty” to London with its first opened location in Islington.

With an all-day dining menu of fresh juices and organic coffee in the morning to superfood cocktails in the evening, the restaurant’s food menu caters to everyone no matter their dietary needs – from gluten-free, vegans, vegetarians, bodybuilders or just people that love eating healthy.

It was really hard to choose from an extensive menu but we opted for pancakes – eggs and bacon and peanut butter, banana and strawberries which were to die for.

When it comes to Insta-worthy spots, Skinny Kitchen won’t disappoint you. A big heated outdoor terrace brings island vibes, while the interior boosts sleek pink tiles, vibrant teal velvet booth seating with vibrant plants and green foliage dangling from the ceiling.

 52 Upper St, London N1 0QH

 

The New York City Guide

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And here it is – the second part of my New York City guide. Before you start, tip number one is: wear comfortable shoes! We wandered around so much that step counter on my phone went nuts. We walked between 15km and 20 km every day! Considering we used public transport a lot, this is shocking. But I loved every minute of it and hope to come back soon.

Get Around

Even though yellow cabs, Uber and Lyft (which works same as Uber and may even be better!) are everywhere to been seen, the fastest way to get around the city is the Metro. The weekly Metro card which gives you unlimited travel for 7 days, and costs only $30. A bargain, compared to London.  The other positive thing is that Metro runs 24/7.

Where To Shop

What Goes Around Comes Around

Experience both old and new at this  SoHo boutique, popular with stylists and celebrities. Whether you look to the past for inspiration or are decidedly fashion-forward, What Goes Around Comes Around will provide clothing, shoes and accessories that are stylish and timeless, even if the prices are very contemporary. The shop also produces and markets its own vintage-inspired collection.

351 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013

Glossier

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Even though they ship to UK now, there is something in actually seeing and trying products before buying so I decided to go to the physical Glossier shop while in New York. They have a showroom on top of their offices on Lafayette Street down in Soho and it’s pretty cool. It’s always busy so you might end up in a queue outside but it moves pretty fast.  All the products are out for you to have a play with, plus the place is Instagram gold.

123 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10013

If you are into beauty products make sure you also visit Sephora on Union Square which is massive and Barney’s if you’re after some luxe and harder to find brands.

Reformation

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With a couple of stores across Manhattan (one on the Lower East Side, and one in Soho), Reformation is without a doubt one of my favourite shops in the city. With their infamous mini (and maxi) dresses, rad denim, accessories and cute t-shirts in store, I’d dedicate a good bit of shopping (or browsing) time in here…

39 Bond St, New York, NY 10012

Sézane

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Like all of the Sézane locations, the NYC store is designed to look like the apartment of that stylish girl, and between the chic little cafe in front, the gorgeously styled built-ins, and the herringbone floors, well, I wouldn’t mind moving right on in! I don’t know about you, but I do 90% of my clothes shopping online these days because most stores just aren’t fun or well-designed, so it’s really nice to see a shop that makes you actually want to come in and browse.

254 Elizabeth St, New York, NY 10012

What to See

If you’ve never visited before then there is a long list of tourist spots to tick off : Central Park (it’s huge, take a half day for this), Times Square, Empire State and Flat Iron Buildings, Grand Central Station and The Met Museum, to name a few. Here are some of my favourite spots:

Liberty Island

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To be honest, we didn’t want to visit the Liberty Island and famous statue because of the crowd and a feeling you can see it better from the land. But we had an afternoon free so we decided to give it a go. Seeing Ms. Libery in person was pretty cool indeed. Also, Ellis Island Museum is super interesting but if you are not into that I suggest taking the ferry to Staten Island. It’s free and on your way there you will have a great view of the Statue of Liberty even without stopping on the islands. If you want to visit both of the islands you will pay $18 and spend at least an hour in queues.

The Views

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No matter what, avoid going up the Empire State Building for the view. There are so many more better views than that. The first one is Top of The Rock. We paid around $50 each for Sun&Stars ticket, allowing us to come in the morning and then again for sunset. I have to say, the morning session was nice, not to busy. We arrived around 8:30 and there were no queues at all. In the evening it became a bit hectic and it was very hard to even see the sunset or the lights turning on.

The other option is to visit One World Trade Centar Observation Deck, 6th tallest building in the world. Entrance is $34 and you get a complimentary drink with it (beer, wine or prosecco)

DUMBO & Brooklyn Bridge

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Situated a little across from the Brooklyn Bridge, and just across from the Manhattan Bridge (DUMBO = Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass), Dumbo is a neighborhood boasting pretty beautiful views of the Manhattan Bridge as well as some cute places to eat (Grimaldi’s and Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory) and shop. Tip: you can get here from Greenpoint by taking the boat which was the best decision we made. You will get the best views of Manhattan and Brooklyn but also their bridges.

While you are there, make sure to walk the famous Brooklyn Bridge. The best times to walk are early mornings or evenings after sunset. During the day it can become a little bit crowded. It’s worth it though as the views are stunning.

High Mile

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You will have a pretty hard time finding a park as unique as this anywhere else in the world. The High Line is a one and a half mile long suspended green space that allows visitors and residents alike to enjoy plants and car-free space deep within the city. It was built on the raised platform of a former railroad, and the old architecture mixed with the fantastically maintained gardens makes for a memorable experience. There are several great passages and overlooks throughout the park that provide for interesting city views and, if you’ve worked up an appetite, there are even a few food vendors!

Chelsea Market

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There is nothing quite like exploring a great food market in a new city and though New York has several, Chelsea Market reigns supreme. You can get everything from wine, spices, and popsicles here as you roam through the stalls. If you really want to experience the ins and outs of the market, you can even take a food tour to learn (and sample) more.

75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

The Village

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This place is so chilled you will forget you are even in New York. We had a long stroll from High Line all the way to Washinton Square. On the way we passed the famous Magnolia bakery, as well as Carrie Bradshaw’s and Friends apartment.

Washington Square Park is a people watcher’s paradise. Musicians, sunbathers, skateboarders, dog owners, chess players and NYU students all hang out around the historic fountain in the shadow of the arch, often used as a location in films and televisions shows.

Nolita

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NoLIta (for North of Little Italy) might have many of the same features as nearby neighborhoods SoHo and Little Italy, but has a distinctly charming vibe all its own. The area’s cozy cafés, stylish boutiques and bar scene make it a destination. Visit to browse the independent designer shops and sit streetside at cute restaurants, lounges and coffee shops.

Williamsburg

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We were staying in Williamsburg but if you are not, make sure you come and explore. Williamsburg sits across the East River from Manhattan’s Lower East Side and it’s one of Brooklyn’s most popular and exciting neighborhoods where you can explore the lively arts, music, and boutique scene here. The mile-long stretch of Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg is lined with art galleries, bars, and secondhand boutiques that have made the area popular with the hipster set.

The New York City Food Guide


I started writing this blog post a week ago. Originally it was supposed to be one big post, covering everything in New York from eating, shopping to sightseeing but it was way too big. New York has so much to offer and it simply can’t fit into one post. So I decided to split it in two. This post will be about my favourite places to eat and drink while in NYC and in a week I will be posting part 2 – where to shop and what to see including the best ways to move around and where to stay.

So let’s start.

Brunch

Butcher’s Daughter

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Even though the word ‘butcher’ is in the name, this place couldn’t be further from meat. Butcher’s Daughter is a plant-based restaurant, cafe, juice bar and as they say on their website: “vegetable slaughterhouse”. The interior is more LA-like, with lots of white and yellow, plants, pillows and rattan chairs. You can find them in five locations around the city and we liked it so much we visited it on two occasions in one week.  Even though they serve breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner, we only tried their brunch menu. Usually, I would recommend the best thing from the menu but they tend to change their menus quite often so it would be pointless. But, whatever you choose you can’t go wrong. Everything is so delicious. Bare in mind that it can get very busy so try to come earlier.

Various locations

http://www.thebutchersdaughter.com

Egg Shop

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As the name says, this place is devoted to serving all types of eggs all day and night (well until midnight). The local, organic eggs get prepared in a variety of ways: poached atop avocado toast, mixed to make a mayo-free egg salad, or scrambled with seasonal vegetables. There’s also a nice balance of hangover cures – you can even get sides of excellent fried chicken and buttermilk biscuits! but if you are looking for something quick and healthy it’s an even nicer place. I visited the one in Nolita but they have another location in Williamsburg.

The space itself is bright and airy, and feels more like a cool California café—neon teal chairs, a chalkboard menu and big window. I got ahead of myself and ordered a spicy chicken and egg burger which was absolutely massive for a 10am breakfast but so good.

151 Elizabeth St,New York, NY 10012

http://www.eggshopnyc.com

Bakeri

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This Scandinavian style bakery is located in the residential area of Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It’s their second branch(the first is in Williamsburg) opened as they needed larger baking space due to the increasing demand for their high-quality freshly baked goods.  Both, the interior and exterior, are wonderful. From the tall decorative wooden doors to the over-scale botanical wallpaper.  The space is decorated with handmade crafts fitting perfectly with the vintage-rustic vibe and the exposed brick walls.  Stepping in, you will get the feeling you’ve arrived into a different decade. Everyone wears boiler suits (or a variation of it) and a headscarf – the same as working women during WWII. Everything feels intentional. And everything adds up to the warmth and coziness of the café. Order at the counter and grab a seat at the large rustic communal table or at the breakfast bar overlooking the kitchen. It was so hard to choose what to have, the delicious pastries on show were tempting but we opted for biscuits and eggs.

105 Freeman St, Brooklyn, NY 11222, USA

http://www.bakeribrooklyn.com

Other brunch places: Citizens of Chelsea, Jack’s Wife Freda,Pietro Nolita, Banter NYC, Maman,While We Were Young

Lunch

Tacombi

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This place was our lunch stop on days when we were feeling a bit peckish around 2pm. It’s a chain and it can be found around NYC. We found it accidentally because I couldn’t stop talking about tacos for days. I certainly can have tacos in London but these ones were the best I tried. Their chorizo with potatoes or chicken tacos are so delicious you will come back for more. If you are not into tacos they serve quesadillas and Campechanos. They also make everything from scratch with sustainably sourced ingredients, including their corn and flour tortillas which are rolled daily.  We had been to several locations but my favourite one is the one at the Empire State Building because of its interior and natural light which comes through the windows.

Various locations

http://tacombi.com

Dinner

El Almacen

This Williamsburg located, Argentinian restaurant came as the biggest discovery of our New York trip. We walked past it every day on our way to the place where we stayed and it never occurred to me that something so cool lays behind lace curtains.  What’s behind them is a red-brick covered space that feels like the sort of cozy spot you’d stumble into on a random side street in Buenos Aires. Or at least, what I imagine that would be like.

The only light inside is from the candles on the tables and at the back there is a small garden with a fairy light so the whole atmosphere is relaxing and cozy which made us very sleepy after dinner. We got very excited on seeing the menu and ended up ordering too much, starting with actual avocado fries, $24 steak and probably the most heavenly dessert of them all: dulce de leche filled crepe with caramelized bananas.

557 Driggs Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211, USA

http://www.elalmacennyc.com

Caracas Arepa Bar

Before coming to New York, I had never been to a Venezuelan restaurant and I certainly hadn’t tried their famous arepas. Arepa is a bread made of white cornmeal, water and salt. The dough is formed into a patty, grilled, baked, split open and stuffed with a variety of ingredients like a sandwich.  We visited their Brooklyn branch and simply loved it. It’s a small, cozy place, with the garden at the back filled with Latin music. They serve happy hour margaritas and the most delicious arepas. Even though they look small at first they are quite filling so I would advise starting with one and then ordering more if you like.

Sorry that there are no pictures of dinner places. It was way too dark.

291 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11211, USA

http://www.caracasarepabar.com

Other Places for Dinner: Souvlaki GR,NoMo Kitchen,Pizza Beach, Freemans,Mexicue,1830.

Coffee & Cake

Urban Backyard

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According to their website, Urban Backyard “is a coffee shop that is committed to being environmentally and socially responsible.” Alongside the classic caffeinated beverages — Americano, macchiato, mocha, to name a few — look for the specialty drinks like lavender peony iced tea and masala chai. They serve different sweet bits but I would recommend the cutest cacti cupcakes and a wide range of macarons flavours which you can get as part of their ‘Afternoon tea’ offer. Also, this place has the cutest interior and exterior which will look great on your Instagram.

180 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012, USA

https://www.urbanbackyardnyc.com

Woops

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I know we are not in Paris but here is another macaron shop. This one stays open until late (12pm) and it serves over 20 flavours of macarons which taste heavenly. They even offer workshops so you can learn how to make them yourself. You can find them in various locations around New York but we visited one in Williamsburg which had an interior to die for and it wasn’t as busy.

Various locations

Drinks

For this one I suggest you cross the river and have the best views of Manhattan from one of the many rooftop bars.

We’ve been to two and instead of describing them I will just compare both of them as they are equally amazing.

First one we went to was rooftop bar at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge. Because we are not the guests of the hotel we had to pay $20 to get in. As the name says, the hotel is located just next to Brooklyn Bridge and offers amazing views of both the bridge and  Manhattan. On the down side, you will be restricted to a small space and you won’t have access to the whole rooftop and the amazing swimming pool as it’s guests only.

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1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

The second place we visited was Westlight rooftop bar, located on the 22nd floor of William Vale Hotel. We got there pretty late on our last day, too tired and in desperate need of sleep but the view we saw was simply breathtaking. Because the hotel is located on the east of Manhattan, you can imagine how amazing the view is, right? Not only can you see Manhattan but also Brooklyn and Queens – basically the whole city skyline. For me, this view was on the same level as the Top of the Rock and the One World Trade Center Observatory. The rooftop is covered with fake grass and beanbags and rattan chairs with comfy cushions are scattered around. I was tempted to lay down, have a nap and miss my flight in the morning.

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Westlight

1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge: 60 Furman St, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Westlight: 111 North 12th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11249

Copenhagen Guide​

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Regularly voted as one of the happiest cities in the world for the last 40 years, Copenhagen, with its 1.2 million people offers miles of harbor promenades, green spaces, and a mix of modern and historic architecture.  The Danish capital has always attracted people with its New Nordic cuisine – full of local, natural and seasonal food, and an increasing fashion and design scene. However, the thing that put Copenhagen and the top of everyone’s bucket list for certain is hygge, the Danish concept of living a happy life.

Also, according to a new report published this year, Copenhagen was named the best city for women to live in. The government promotes gender and income equality, safety, progress and human rights so there is no surprise that they can focus on things that really matter.

By visiting Copenhagen you will notice that the people there just enjoy the simple things in life, every day, every minute, without overthinking it. Starting from coffee shops and restaurants which have candles lit up all day to meeting their friends after work for a coffee on the rooftop restaurants, eating dinners early and heading home on their bikes to relax before an early bedtime. The fact that there are more than 500 000 bikes in the city shows that Danes love biking and a healthy lifestyle, and many families with children don’t even own a car.  So what is their secret? To understand and experience this for myself, I visited Copenhagen for a long weekend and found the things that are usually missed by tourists but capture the real spirit of the city.

Eat

Møller Kaffe & Køkken

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To experience the real, traditional Danish breakfast I visited  Møller Kaffe & Køkken. It’s a cosy cafe situated in Nørrebro, with recognisable Danish interior. The best time to go and avoid the queues is 9 am, as soon as they open because here going out for breakfast is a big thing and Danes usually get up early. Møller is awarded best brunch spot in Copenhagen and they are serving breakfast all day without dinner or lunch menu available. As seated they will give you a menu and a pencil, asking you to tick everything you want and take it to the counter. Maybe easy to order but hard to choose because menu consists of nearly 20 dishes, from traditional bacon, eggs and øllebrød(Danish porridge) to homemade chicken nuggets and apple with lime and sea salt.  The one thing I would recommend a selection of fresh made breads and fried eggs with kale.

Møller Kaffe & Køkken, Nørrebrogade 160, 2200 Copenhagen N

Mad & Kaffe

Located in one of Vesterbro’s hotspot locations, you can combine your own tasty breakfast plate by ticking the list of various breakfast possibilities. The café is known for being an Instagram-darling with an aesthetic and colourful morning plate perfectly shareable – with a friend or on social media. Avocado with chili oil and baked almonds, cinnamon bun with organic chocolate on the top, yogurt with muesli, matcha tea and basil are just some of the small dishes you find on the menu. Mad & Kaffe also offer lunch and bigger meals. You can order burger, salad or famous open sandwiches.

Bæst

This pizzeria is as close to Italy as you will come in Denmark, and yet very few of the ingredients they use are actually imported. Only the highest quality meat is chosen from the organic free-range Hindsholm pork. The restaurant even makes its own fresh cheeses like mozzarella, burrata, and ricotta. Bæst is the third restaurant of chef Christian Puglisi – the famous Noma alumni and owner of acclaimed restaurants Relæ and Manfreds.

 

Shop

Hay

It’s pretty likely you’ve already heard of Hay before. It could be their beautiful sofas, Instagrammable trays or even stationary – but if you haven’t let me introduce you to this gorgeous Danish design company. With their city centre store laid out like an apartment; this place is home to beautiful furniture, small accessories and more colour co-ordinated stationary than you could wish for.

Østergade 61, 1100 København K, Denmark

Jægersborggade

As mentioned by locals, this is the most important street you need to see if you are staying in Copenhagen for a short time. Jægersborggade is home of more than 40 different shops including the art gallery CMYK which exhibits and sells Danish graphics and illustrations, gågrøn! sustainable interior boutique, Resecond the world’s first dress-swapping shop, Panache which sells vintage clothes from the 60s and 70s, Lady Fingers handmade jewellery designer, handmade Ro chocolate, wine bars and the highlight of the street, Michelin starred restaurant Relæ – creative and free of cultural heritage, this restaurant serves food from all over the world.  Further down this street, you will also find Copenhagen’s most famous coffee shop, The Coffee Collective, which is a coffee consulting company and specialist micro roastery,  owned by Klaus Thomsen, who is the World Barista Champion and a two-time national champion.

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Kaktus Kobenhavn

See

Nyhavn

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Originally a busy commercial port where ships from all over the world would dock, Nyhavn is a must while visiting Copenhagen. Aside from colorful buildings and beautiful boats, this area is filled with people enjoying the relaxed atmosphere by the canal, jazz music and great food.

The word København means “merchants’ harbor,” so many of the city’s most impressive buildings, are visible from the water. You can take sever. We opted to explore on bikes like the locals instead- although we did park them to walk along the harbor and have a drink.

Christianshavn

One of my favourite neighborhoods I discovered in Copenhagen. It’s an area of small islands known for its hip coffee culture and canals with colourful boats. One of the main attractions set in Christianshavn that’s worth visiting is Our Savior’s Church —which is famous for its helix spire with an external winding staircase and you can climb to the top for impressive views of Copenhagen if it’s not too windy that day.

Tivoli Park and Gardens

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This amusement park and pleasure garden opened in August of 1843 and is the second-oldest operating amusement park in the world. You won’t find many other city centers where more than 80,000 square meters have been set aside for a magical amusement park like this! Whether you visit during Christmas or in the warm summer months, this attraction has seasonal activities and celebrations year-round that are worth visiting.A

Arken Museum of Modern Art

If you are an art lover make sure you visit Arken Museum of Moder Arts in Ishøj, 25 minutes from Copenhagen. This museum is truly spectacular and worth the visit. If you go on a nice day, you will surely appreciate the surrounding as the museum is close to the beach.

Polka Dots Brunchin’

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Few weeks I finally got a chance to visit one of the London’s prettiest places. Tucked away down a quiet street in Farringdon, Bourne & Hollingsworth sits between a  garden park and a children’s play park and it is exactly the kinda place I like to brunch in; peaceful, quirky and with serious interior goals – real Pinterest and Instagram heaven.

Inside, the main dining area is all white wood and old-timey furnishings. In the back is conservatory like area with beautiful floral furniture and green plants everywhere. I was lucky enough to get a table in that section.

The brunch menu features a choice of single serving or bottomless cocktails – offering unlimited refills on classics such as Bellinis and Bloody Marys for £15/£16.The food menu, was a great mix of sweet and savory, meaning it took me a while to finally commit to a dish. I went for banana and fresh coconut pancakes with fresh berries and honey which was delicious.

Bourne & Hollingsworth Buildings, 42 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell, EC1R 0HU. Nearest station: Farringdon or Angel. The weekend brunch runs from 10am-4pm on Saturday and Sunday. For more information, visit the Bourne & Hollingsworth buildings website.

What I wore: Hat: Accessorize(sold out) | Top: Zara | Skirt: Pretty Little Thing| Shoes: M&S | Bag: Zara| Cardigan: Boohoo

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Lisbon Guide

Lisbon’s transformation from a low-profile, old-fashioned city to Hipster Capital of Europe has been nothing if not dramatic. It slipped under the travel radar for decades, but now the secret is truly out.  I think October was the perfect time for our weekend break because the city wasn’t as busy and the temperature was between 25 and 28 degrees.

Lisbon is a beautiful city, from its signature cobbles to its famous colourful tiles. I loved just wandering the streets, and of course, eating all the pastries I found. Built on Seven hills, Lisbon is a fun city to explore on foot but the (in)famous Tram 28 and Santa Justa lift are leg-saving ways to explore the city sights.

I made a list of my favorite places to visit whilst here.

Eat & Drink

Nicolau Lisboa

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Located in central Lisbon this place is the perfect spot for breakfast, brunch or afternoon coffee. Because of its position and the loveliest interior and food, sometimes you will have to wait in a queue with all the other Instagramers and bloggers but it’s worth the wait. The interior is filled with books, magazines and vintage items. Green tiles and plants create a cozy atmosphere. From the very long menu, I opted for the Nicolau french toast with berries, banana and greek yogurt topped with maple syrup and pistachio and it was absolutely delicious. The cherry on top was the fact that it came served on a heart-shaped plate. Can it get more instagramable than this? I don’t think so!

R. São Nicolau 17, 1100-547 Lisboa

Dear Breakfast

As the names signifies this place really looks like a love letter to the most important meal of the day.

This is the perfect place to go if you like eggs which you can get in every combination served with delicious coffee and freshly squeezed orange.  Minimal and airy, this is the calming oasis you want to eat your breakfast in.

R. Gaivotas 17, 1200-649 Lisboa

Heim Cafe

For breakfast at this place we had to get up early because it was a bit far from the place where we were staying, but it was worth the travel.  An urban jungle atmosphere and the most delicious menu made us feel sad that we were leaving the same evening and couldn’t come back one more time. We opted for waffles with eggs and chorizo and it was the most delicious thing ever.

Rua Santos-O-Velho, 2 e 4, 1200-109 Lisboa

Landeau Chocolate

Go here for one reason only – the chocolate cake. I know that this will sound weird for most people but I’m not a big fan of chocolate cake, I find it very heavy and usually too sweet. But this chocolate cake is something else, a triangle made in heaven, so light and delicious. There are two locations of this place in Lisbon but we found one which was very calm and quiet, a welcome resting spot. The second one is at LX Factory and usually is much busier.

Rua das Flores 70, 1200-014 Lisboa

Hello, Kristof

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Hello, Kristof is Lisbon’s answer to quality coffee. It was the best we tried in those few days and we had quite a lot of coffee. Hello Kristof also knows that coffee and magazines go hand in hand, that’s why their curated collection that you can read while having your morning or afternoon coffee.

R. do Poço dos Negros 103, 1200 Lisboa

Pastéis de Belém

Try one of Lisbon’s most famous tarts – these freshly baked and warm delights are a truly delicious treat that have been sold in Portugal for hundreds of years. One of the most famous places to eat is at Pastéis de Belém, who pride themselves on the traditional baking method, ingredients and of-course… deliciousness! Don’t worry too much at the sight of long queues, they are fast moving. But even if you are waiting for a bit it’s worth it because they are truly the best that I’ve tried in Lisbon.

R. Belém 84-92, 1300-085 Lisboa

Shop

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LX Factory (Rua Rodrigues Faria, 103) – located under 25 de Abril Bridge is a unique place in Lisbon where a complex of abandoned warehouses has been transformed into an artsy collection of bars, restaurants, shops and start-up offices! It was previously an industrial complex, full of different factories, but has been transformed into a lively marketplace. Stroll through local vintage shops, delicious eateries, and enjoy the beautiful street art. If you are into books, don’t miss the bookshop, which is several stories high and has an old printing press upstairs!You can get here by taxi (reasonably cheap in Lisbon) or tram 15.

A Vida Portuguesa

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If you’re after some special local souvenirs, then look no further than this gem. With everything from handmade soaps (in the most beautiful packaging), kitchenware, wines and foods – there’s something for everyone. As they specialize in traditional Portuguese products you will find the famous,vintage-like brightly colored tins of sardines.
R. Anchieta 11, 1200-023 Lisboa, Portugal 

Mercado de Riberia 

Hosted in one of the biggest market spaces in the city, Time Out has converted the location into one huge food hang out, with pop-ups from some of Lisbon’s most loved restaurants and cafes inside. So, whether you’re after delicious seafood, ramen, the best ice cream from Santini or even a burger or vegan treat- this place has it all.

Av. 24 de Julho 49, Portugal

What to see

Bairro Alto

Lisbon is one of those places where the climate is so good the nightlife works in reverse.  Instead staying inside the bars, people spill out of the venues and into the streets, going back inside mostly just to top up their glasses. The Bairro Alto neighborhood has the biggest concentration of bars, so barely a night goes by that the area doesn’t turn into one collective street party.
It’s also worth walking the district’s cobbled streets by day, when it takes on a completely different personality. By daylight you’ll find vibrant street art and boutique stores.

Belem Tower

Next year Lisbon’s ‘UNESCO World Heritage Site’, Belem will turn 500 years old – construction started in 1515 and finished in 1519. At the grand old age of 500 Belem is still going strong.  My top tip is to visit early in the day – queues rather quickly build up to over an hour wait.

Jerónimos Monastery

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The construction of the monastery began in 1502 and the site is the most-ambitious achievement of Manueline architecture. Its UNESCO World Heritage site status reflects its beauty and impressiveness. It is a must-see when visiting Portugal’s capital.

Praça do Comércio

Lisbon’s biggest and most monumental square sits along the riverfront and is a photogenic and interesting place to visit. Most recently renovated in 2010, it’s famous for two marble columns that used to be part of the royal palace. The area is now home to a lot of famous shops and is great for people watching or sitting down for a coffee or ice cream. From there you can also see the famous Rua Augusta Arch.

Elevador de Santa Justa

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Elevador de Santa Justa was built by Raoul Mésnier du Ponsard who was Gustave Eiffel’s apprentice. It seems Eiffel’s work had a big impact on his apprentice, as the structures are very similar in design. Originally built as a way to connect higher and lower areas of the city, it is now used mainly by visitors that want to experience ‘old Lisbon’

Castelo de São Jorge

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One of Lisbon’s most iconic landmarks – with over 1000 years of history, Castelo de São Jorge is a must-see for any visitor to the city. My top tip is to visit around dusk… the castle has 360-degree views across the city and becomes a perfect place to watch the sunset.

Viewpoints of the city are best seen from Miradouro Das Portas Do Sol (Alfama rooftops), Miradouro da Graça (overlooking the city and castle) – the view from Castle of São Jorge and Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara.

Alfama 

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Alfama is the historic area of Lisbon. It is filled with narrow, winding streets that make it a bewildering place in which to get lost. I wandered the maze of streets, exploring tiny squares, hidden alleys, and long-abandoned houses while watching locals go about their lives.

Viewpoints of the city are best seen from Miradouro Das Portas Do Sol (Alfama rooftops), Miradouro da Graça (overlooking the city and castle) – the view from Castle of São Jorge and Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara.

Other places worth visiting include: Rossio Square, MAAT, MUDE- Fashion and design museum, 25 de Abril Bridge and Palace of the Marquises of Fronteira.

Christmas in Belgravia

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Want to go out in London for a bit of festive spirit but without the interruption of tourists and Christmas shoppers? Then look no further than Belgravia!

Motcombe Street is a new discovery for me. This little chocolate box street looks like it fell out of a fairytale with all the cute shops and twinkling lights. At one point a proper carriage with horses went through the street!

The one thing you can’t miss when you are here is the cutest chocolate shop – Rococo Chocolates. Not only you can buy organic chocolates in the nicest packaging for Chrismas gifts but you can enjoy London’s best hot chocolate. Choose between classic, cinnamon spiced, sea-salt or one with a hint of chili that’ll warm you up on these winter days. There is no cream on top but something much nicer – a homemade marshmallow on a stick to dunk into your hot drink.

This place also has a Chocolate School that offers a variety of workshops, classes and tastings for adults and children from beginner to expert. Also as if that wasn’t already enough there is a huge teddy bear in the window.   If that doesn’t make you want go out of your house on a cold winter day, nothing will 🙂

What I Wore: Coat: Bershka| Trousers: H&M| Top: Zara|Bag: Shein| Boots: M&S| Hat: H&M(similar)

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Brunch in Winter Wonderland

 

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It’s December!

I’m officially allowed to go overboard with all things Christmas here and on my Instagram. In London, Christmas actually started at the beginning of November so I have been collecting the pretty pictures of Christmas decorations all around the city and now they will start coming out. To mark the beginning of Christmas time we decided to visit magical place in the Central London – Dalloway Terrace.

This little place has been transformed into the winter wonderland with fake snow, pine trees and an endless supply of snuggly blankets. It is absolute Instagram heaven. There is no surprise it is full of people who eat their food lukewarm after documenting everything on Instagram.

The atmosphere was so cozy and peaceful , we felt like we were in Narnia and the wait staff were brilliant from the very start. The menu was amazing and we wanted to order literally everything but at the end we opted for french toast, one with fresh berries, one with bacon and saved some space for delicious hot chocolate with biscuits at the end.

 

What I Wore: Jumper: H&M | Skirt: Topshop | Boots: M&S | Bag: Zara(old)

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Instagram Issues

Processed with VSCO with c8 presetProcessed with VSCO with c8 presetProcessed with VSCO with c8 presetProcessed with VSCO with c8 presetI’ve wanted to write this post about Instagram for a long time now because for a period of time this was a such a big thing in my life that kept me awake at night, which is ridiculous, losing sleep over an app!

The conversation about Instagram themes, followers, and bots has been pretty popular recently. Some people are concerned where this is all going, including Instagram and blogging.

Everyone I speak to has the same view. Instagram has taken such prominence over blogging that it can feel overwhelming. Every square you decide to share is carefully curated with the aim to get engagement and to increase the numbers because numbers mean success.

I realized a few weeks ago that I’m spending too much time thinking about the theme of my grid and if my next photo will fit into (at the moment) a pastel feed. It went so far that I started photoshopping colours and ended up ditching some amazing photos. Dark tables? Nah! Colourful umbrellas? Nah. Some beautiful moments in my life simply didn’t make the cut to be featured on my Instagram.

I realized that if I don’t move from London to some Greek island anytime soon I’m doomed. I wanted my Instagram to be completely me, a place where I’m showing the world what I’m up to, where I travel, what I eat…but then it turned out the grid decides for me what to do next so it fits into the theme.

Why am I trying to theme my life? My love for photography and capturing beauty in everyday life is suffering because I’m imposing limitations on myself for the sake of numbers.

Another problem is the new and ridiculous Instagram algorithm so if there is no #ootd or #travel is highly likely your picture won’t be shown to too many people.

I’m not sure whose fault it is, the bloggers’ or Instagram’s but I’m going to stop doing it, stop stressing my self over the next picture and just post what and when I want.

On a brighter note, here are some pictures with the last breath of Autumn.  Now when everything starts to look Christmasy (and I gave up on bare legs) this tree next to my building was a true gem to find.

I’m not sure how this jumper looks on the pictures but in real life, it’s the softest thing ever. It’s a mohair blend and I found it for a bargain at H&M (not an advert btw). Did I mention that I’m obsessed with jumpers?

What I wore: Skirt: Next | Jumper: H&M | Boots: Dorothy Perkins (similar)| Coat: Zara(old) | Bag: Zara(old) | Tights: Accessorize 

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Chinatown

img_3013Processed with VSCO with c8 presetProcessed with VSCO with c8 presetimg_3014img_2996-1Processed with VSCO with c8 presetLast weekend I decided to visit Chinatown. It wasn’t my first time because I’ve walked up and down these streets so many times on my way to Picadilly or Oxford Circus, but this  time I went specifically to spend the afternoon wandering around the area.

Feeling like a tourist in your own city is a bit of a must from time to time, but whilst great in theory, it’s kind of tricky, especially if you decide to do that on a Sunday afternoon when the amount of tourists pouring down the streets can be overwhelming.

That didn’t stop us from exploring the shops for exotic food and a new set of chopsticks, having lunch in a Chinese restaurant and even queuing 20 minutes for Bubble wrap waffles. Despite the cold it was so worth the wait.

For the last few weeks I’ve been stocking up on new knitwear but until this week it wasn’t really cold enough to wear this cozy thing. I got it from H&M for a bargain and it’s the warmest jumper I own.

WHAT I WORE: Jumper; H&M | Jeans: ASOS| Bag: SheIn |Boots: M&S(similar)

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