Travel

HONG KONG

So we are going to Hong Kong to film the NY parade. Oh ok!  

So that was my not so excited reply when I found out we were going to be shooting our TV show in Hong Kong. Why? Well in my pre-conceived mind I assumed HK was a city of noise, traffic and business meetings. And yes that is partly true however, but it had so many more surprises waiting for me. 

Who knew that HK had 263 Islands…I know i didn't. Someone described HK to me as Manhattan next to Hawaii. You have the city lights and buzz of the city, right next to the tranquil chilled out islands looking out to the South China sea. Seriously, this is one impressive place. HK has markets, food, culture, beaches, hiking trails, history, nightlife, art. It's an electric mix of the old and new. 

So where do I recommend going: Well when it comes to food OMG you are spoilt for choice. But there is one place that truly stood out for me and that was M&C Duck at Harbour City. The food is chinese yet with a minimalistic twist. Every bite was a delight to my taste buds. 

As for fun why not check out Ocean Park where I was lucky to feed the local pandas there. We then rode up the cable car across the beautiful ocean (be careful if you are scared of heights). It's a place for all the family where you will find rides, animals and entertainment to keep you busy.

When it comes to markets, HK is full of shopping options. But for me I really liked the laid back Stanley Market on HK Island next to the sea. Shopping is done at a more relaxed pace. 

We were there filming the chinese NY, which happened to be the year of the horse. It was an experience that included parades, magnificent fireworks, and visits to the temple where people start of their NY with blessings. A great way to truly start a NY in my opinion.

One of my favourite things was making a wish for the NY, then tying it on to a piece of paper attached to an orange and throwing it high up in the air hoping it will land on a on a tree. It's known as the wishing tree, and for your wish to come true the orange must land on the tree. Mine did fortunately…as for the wish? I'm still waiting!

And saving the best for last, Hong kong isn't over until you meet the Big Buddha face to face. To get to him all you need to do is take a 25 minute cable ride over the mountainous terrain of Lantau Island, and then walk up 286 steps. Trust me, he's worth the effort.

I had no expectations of HK and thank goodness too because it completely blew me away. Would i go back? Absolutely. And by the way our flight there with Cathay Pacific was amazing! My first trip with them. I will be back!

Check out our trip here: 

HONG KONG VIDEO

 

 

 

 

DESA SENI Eco Village - BALI

In 2015, Emirates Airlines started direct flights to Bali, and as i have never been there i decided to hop on a flight from Dubai, and 9 hours later i had arrived. It's an Island that truly lives within nature. Healing, health, yoga, mediation and surfing is a big part of this Islands appeal.

The film EAT PRAY LOVE brought a lot of attention to Bali especially Ubud. However I spent most of my time in a very relaxed place called Canggu, on the west side of the island. And lucky for me  one of the most beautiful yoga retreats was just around the corner from my villa.

Desa Seni is an eco village and yoga retreat, where residents can stay, swim, dine, practice yoga and treat themselves to the spa. But it's not just for residents. Local visitors can pop in 7 days a week for various classes of mediation and yoga, which takes place in a garden pavilion set amongst the trees. As soon as i entered the retreat for my daily yoga class i felt a sense of calm and tranquility, so much so that during one of their classes known as yin yoga i actually cried. It's a yoga practice that releases a lot of emotions from within. I highly recommend it. Check out the video I made whilst at Desa Seni.

 

www.desaseni.com

   

 

                       

 

KALIYOGA Retreat in Italy

When it comes to yoga retreats, Kailyoga is a gem. Located in beautiful Puglia, the trulli was my bedroom for the week. Each morning we started and ended our day with mediation then yoga. In between we had some delicious Italian homemade food including freshly made pasta. The retreat feels more like a little village where you meet and mingle over breakfast lunch and dinner, and naturally end up bonding with your yoga classmates. We also made time for a bike ride to the local town, a trip to the beach and enjoyed some chill out nights in the outdoor jacuzzi whilst watching the sunset. Definitely a place to go to give your mind and body some harmony.

www.kaliyoga.com 

 

KASAULI in India

If you want to escape the heat and the chaos of India's hectic cities, then head to the hills, just like they did during the reign of the British Empire. The various 'Hill Stations' are located along the drive up towards the Himalayas. I stayed in a small hill station called Kasauli in the state of Himachal Pradesh, which is a 2 hour drive from Chandigarh. Our resort was called Mahal Farms which contained several cottages set above each other, and each cottage has its own balcony and magnificent view. Breakfast, lunch and dinner is served whenever you like, and just a ten minute drive is the local market full of street food such as the famous 'Momo' dumplings and 'Somosa Burger'. You can also find a lot of gifts, clothes and unusual presents to take back home.

 

www.mahalfarmscountryhome.in