A friend and I were very excited to join an organised day trip to Glastonbury in an effort to learn more about the mythology behind King Arthur and his famous quest. It is believed that the grail resides in Glastonbury, which is believed to be Arthur's Avalon (very cool). Here are some shots of our trip.
So... many apologies for not posting for such a long time - life was very busy for a while there and, now that it's summer, I am finding that I have more free time (arguably too much... Pokémon Go has become my life). I am also coming out of a phase where I am traveling but not taking as many photos; I am learning to appreciate moments more and more rather than hiding behind a lens. It has been strangely liberating not taking pictures everywhere I go. I do, however, have some photos I have accumulated over the last 6 months of various trips I have been on around the UK and am finally ready to share. I am particularly proud of a feat I accomplished this spring where I climbed Scafell Pike, the tallest peak in England! Pretty cool!
The Lake District
This trip to Iceland was a long time coming. For years I'd been dreaming about the land of ice and fire. Consequently, this trip did not disappoint. To sum it up? Dancing green lights, giant water-blowing holes and free labour were aplenty.
Let me explain. The aurora has been on my bucket list since I was a child. Living in Canada you may think to yourself "doesn't this girl live north enough to see them?" Incorrect. Thanks to light pollution and being nearest to the most southern tip of Canada, I have never had the privilege... and truly, it is a privilege.
For whatever reason, geysers have always boggled me. Having limited background knowledge in geology, they seemed almost magical. It was an exciting moment when the first one bubbled up and erupted in a cascade of hot water. What a tease though! Every time the water would bubble slightly, you were poised at the camera in anticipation... and then... nothing... and then when you least expected it (and when tourists were least prepared) it would erupt! An exciting spectacle, to say the least.
Free labour, you ask? Well in order to get myself over to Iceland as cheaply as possible, I signed up for a volunteer work camp experience. I met a group of travelers at a hostel in Reykjavik and we traveled through the dramatic Icelandic landscape whiteout saying so much as hello. You really wouldn't expect that we would all become great friends by the end of the trip; working, cooking, sleeping, showering (...eek), and exploring with the same people for a week and half really bonds you together.
Overall this was a fantastic trip and absolutely recommend visiting this beautiful country.
I cannot express enough how much I love Scotland; it is such an underrated country for its sheer beauty and coloured history, Edinburgh in particular was a city I felt worth a second visit, considering the last time I had only been there for two to three days - hardly enough time to appreciate the city so completely.
The above picture was taken on a hike up Arthur's Seat; a treacherous hike that I later discovered could have been much easier had I taken the proper way up. Oops. The gorgeous scenery below was from our trip through the Scottish highlands up to Lochness and Inverness (yes that's me with the Three Sisters... the backdrop to Hagrid's hut in the Harry Potter films). The beach scenes are from our outing around the greater Edinburgh area when we visited East Lothian and then made a 1.5 hour journey to Glasgow for dinner. The chapel photo is of Rosslyn Chapel, famous its legends and secrets, and of course its appearance in the Da Vinci Code. The very last photo is not of the chapel but of the ruined abbey at Hollyrood. The abbey itself was achingly beautiful, but sadly the cloudy day rendered the photos a little less eye-catching.
Today we took a day trip with a guided group to Rochester, Kent where you will find England's tallest castle. I have not been to many castles, so I cannot really give a fair comparison, but I have to say this is the first I've been to that, when you see it you think to yourself, "they must have filmed a movie here... this beast is way too cool..." In the 13th century the castle was also temporarily taken into possession by the famously reviled King John.
The area is also known to be a favourite of Charles Dickens who wrote many of his famous books here, including Great Expectations. Enjoy!
You can find some pretty amazing deals on Groupon. In November some friends and I were fortunate enough to snag tickets on an evening booze cruise along the Thames. I am still fiddling with my camera, trying to find the best settings to take night shots, and luckily some turned out nicely. My favourite shot has got to be the one of the Shard. Enjoy!
In November (yes... I know... this was two months ago and I am behind) a friend and I visited France for the weekend to see the famous Strasbourg Christmas Market. Needless to say it was exactly what we imagined and more. Despite the cold, we managed to really enjoy ourselves and get acquainted with this small city and its friendly locals. It was a short 24-hour experience, but well worth it.
Dirty dirty mind... I knew what you were thinking. It's not what you think it means, silly! Gute fahrt = good ride, which is exactly what we had.
Vienna... what can I say about Vienna? In all honest, I think the photos really do speak for themselves, so I will let them do the honours.
Earlier in September a fellow Canadian friend and I had the opportunity to check out an amazing part of the world that I had always wanted to see; Stonehenge. Along the journey home we also stopped for a short visit to the Bath. What an incredibly picturesque city; future retirement possibilities? Georgian architecture lines the streets and tourists bustle about as we walked along the cobblestone streets. The best was when we sped by a very realistic looking statue that grabbed my friend's shoulder and send her screaming. Too funny.
We actually landed on a very special weekend; the Jane Austen festival was in full swing and die-hard fans were decked in their 19th century getup. I hope you enjoy the shots!
As close families and friends know, I have taken a working holiday in London, England for the year. I was one of those fortunate teachers that was hired with full-time employment right out of teacher's college and, after two years classroom experience in the GTA, I decided to take a leave from my board and do something adventurous; I moved across the pond. I have been loving my time here but, admittedly there have been some good and bad days. Most of my experience here has been tremendously positive, but my first week with the students and this past week have been trying; the kids are a little more challenging than what I was used to back home, which is very exhausting when in my position I teach over 300 of them in a week. Nevertheless, I already I feel like I am becoming a stronger teacher in terms of classroom management, which is a wonderful thing, and I know that by the end of the year my lesson timing will improve greatly as well. Throughout the year I will post various images from days I spent either traveling around the city or abroad.