I must say that traveling back to Bali was something I always was a little bit afraid of. Having lived there for a year in 2011 I dreaded seeing all the changes due to excessive building, tourisme and pollution. Due to the increase of population the island had radically changed into a hectic traffic nightmare. The southern side of the island is not the best for kids, the sea is way to rough and not very clean however if you are into food and shopping eat your heart out!
Rent a scooter in the area of Seyminyak, Canggu or Umalas and make your way through the maze of endless restaurants and shops for both inerior and clothes.
Here’s my shortlist…
Earth Cafe http://www.earthcafebali.com/
Mama San http://www.mamasanbali.com/
Made’s Warung http://madeswarung.com/
Desa Seni is also one of the best yoga venues http://www.desaseni.com/
Cafe Organic http://cafeorganicbali.com/
Ku de ta (just for a sundowner) http://www.kudeta.com/
La Luciolla for an easy quiet lunch with sea view https://www.tripadvisor.nl/Restaurant_Review-g469404-d804047-Reviews-La_Lucciola-Seminyak_Bali.html
Dahana for some seriously good Japanse food http://www.dahanabali.com/
Magali Pascal http://www.magalipascal.com/
Lulu Yasmine http://www.luluyasmine.com/
Milk & Roses http://milkandrosesboutique.com/
Great inspiring day trips:
Green School https://www.greenschool.org/
Five Elements Spa http://www.fivelements.org/en/
So scooter your way through traffic and be sure to wear your helmet even though it might ruin your looks;-)))
Ibiza, you have to admit, it still is fun!
The scorpio island has changed so much over the past few years and gotten very busy but it still has the magic that once made it a hippie, bohemien hangout for creatives from all over the world.
So where do we go now? Here are some of my tips & tricks to survive, even with kids! Ibiza is a great destination with friends or as a family vacation.
- Cappuccino in the marina with a great view of the old town
- Can Guimo; small hippie place with homemade breakfast, lunch etc. It is next to the road in San Lorenzo
- Passion Cafe has various restaurants all over the island. The place for healthy juices and great food.
- Croissant Show in the old town for a french breakfast
- Jockey Club only if you are very early
- Aqua Blanca for the best sandwhiches ever
- Es Torrent for excellent service and fresh fish
- Los Enamorados in the North of the island
- Paloma Cafe the lunch in the campo
- Il Giardinetto, Italian food in the Botafoch harbor. Simple but very consistently good Italian food!
- Babylon beach in St. Eulalia
- Cala Bonita at s’Estanyol; new, great staff and food
- La Luna del Orto
- Cicale the other great Italian
- Es Caliu for the meat lover
- Macao in busy St. Gertrudis
- Les Terasses for a special Moroccan or Thai night
Feel like doing something different? Catch the ferry (or rent a boot) to Formentera and rent an old fashioned Mehari or a bike! Lunch options are numerous but make sure to book ahead as some are quite popular. Here are some great places:
- Chezz Gerdi
Don’t forget to try the local drink, hierbas but drink it on the rocks🙂
For a while this had been on my Bucket list. A country with a rich past, gorgeous beaches and beach taking inland nature.
Our family trip started off in Galle. A cute little town with a rich history of the Portugees, Dutch and English settlers. Now it is being renovated and has numerous cafe’s, boutique hotels, shops and great restaurants.
Here is a short list!
Where to stay:
- Fort Bazaar Hotel
- Galle Fort Hotel
- Mango House
Where to eat:
- Tuk Tuk
- Tuna & Crab
- Poonie’s Kitchen
One more thing, I know Sri Lanka is known for its tea. Not so strange that coffee is not a priority but for me with a slight coffee addiction, it is hard waking up! In Galle, after a little trial and error exercise the Fort Bazaar has my vote!
To do tips:
Go surfing! Just outside of the fort is Devata beach. Grab a tuk tuk to the Shack where you can rent a board, book a lesson and have a bite to eat. Open for breakfast.
Go to the beach and have lunch:
- Wijaya Beach
- WB beachclub
- Talpe Beach Restaurant
If you have more time and want to really get Some waves drive down to Arugam Bay. It is quite a drive (4,5 hours) but well worth it. Book a room at Hideaway and enjoy the laid back surfers paradise.
Amsterdam, my home town… Love this city! With all it’s different neighbourhoods, farmers’ markets, the beautiful canals which never bore you and not to forget dozens of great restaurants. Here’s a little short list with my favorites:
- Toscanini… the famous Italiaan
- George Bistro for the best burger (yep sorry, they won!)
- Gebroeders Hartering for a ‘old Amsterdam’ surrounding and simply amazing food
- Buffet van Odette the not to miss lunch (breakfast, dinner too!)
- Hotel Goudfazant good food in a huge and cool old garage
- Choux near central station is a precious little gem
- Krua Thai for authentic Thai food
- Marius is more intimate yet simple, and not to forget Worst next door
- Restaurant Breda delicate tastes and great decor
- Ku Kitchen’s Asian food and cocktails
- De Klepel always has a great set menu
- Brut de Mer oysters yeah!!!!
- The Seafood Bar for your classic ‘fish dish’
- Sama Cebo the Indonesian oldtimer, get a spot in the brasserie!
More to follow… Enoy!!!
Traveling with my two kids is one of my greatest joys in life. The adventure and energy are highly addictive. This pic is one of my favorites, their faces are pure joy even though they had to smile on command:-)
Spring in Ibiza is the best time to enjoy the green fields, wild flowers and blossoming almond trees. We were there for the Easter break and it was absolutely gorgeous! Living in a city the nature was so overwhelming, instantly made me feel alive and more connected. Waking up when it is still chilly outside and having a coffee next to the fireplace, what can possibly go wrong after a start like that?
We had lunch at Mikado, a great thai or asian restaurant in the center of St. Gertrudis. The food was fresh, well seasoned (sort of essential in the asian kitchen) and not very expensive. The kids had chicken saté and we ordered almost every starter on the menu… La Escollera is my other all-year round favorite. Lunch was again, as always, simply delicious.
The best 4 day break ever! No crowds, pure nature and a blue sky…
Boho chique, barefoot luxury… This place has got it all! The staff is lovely, food is delicious and Trancoso is the ultimate hide-away. Travel here in the summer and find a relaxed, deserted little town away from the crowds. However if you travel here in December or January expect a big party crowd that will keep you awake and busy well after midnight.
Wow! Who would have believed a couple of years ago that travelling to Colombia would ever be safe again? Well it is! And so NOW is the time to go!
It is the new vibrant South American destination. Not only is the culture a treat but wait until you find out about the endless food options. With loads of influences from Peru, you can find loads of fresh ceviche and fish in Cartagena. Absolutely loved this town. It has a mix of an old European colony and the warm vibrant Colombian upbeat atmosphere. Medellin is the hang out for ‘digital nomads’ and the coastline is still pure and untouched.
Hotel tips for Cartagena: La Passion (bit out of fashion but great location), Ananda Hotel, Casa Blanca and Hotel Casa Pestagua. If you want to treat yourself; Santa Clara is your best bet.
Restaurants in Cartagena: La Perla is a delicious small Peruvian restaurant where you can eat ceviche with a great glass of wine. Feel like a good steak? This is the place to be: Quebracho. Would do anything for that chimichurri saus! El Boliche is a cute restaurant where ceviche is made for you behind the bar. Reservations are must as this place is tiny! Restaurant Carmen serves good fusion food and is a good option for diner. The area of Plaza de Trinidad is great to have a drink at night. Start your night at Trattoria di Silvio for some serious excellent Italian food and then hit the town starting at Bar Demente.
Something else? Travel up to Tayrona park and go surfing at simple and super basic Costeno Beach.
Almost summer… 2016 can you believe it? Can’t wait to put on that long dress, wander in my garden and look up at the stars at night and wonder what the hell am I doing back in Amsterdam most of the year. As soon as I land just the scent of the air brings me back to my childhood year on the island.
My book is full of tips of places which still have that authentic feeling and haven’t changed through the years. Wonder why everyone always wants ‘new’ when there is so much beauty in ‘old’?
Just a list of my all time favorites:
La Paloma is the hippie favorite. The food is always excellent and has never let me down. I usually order different starters to share as choosing one has never been my best quality.
Ex Xarcu where time just does not seem to matter. The amount of the bill on the other hand does as this can be quiet stiff.
Macao Cafe is the best Italiaan where you can drink wine all night and have your kids running around the town square without having to (really) worry.
The Passion Cafe does serve the best organic health food. Great menu and juices, perfect for the day after guilt comfort food.
Oh almost forgot, Can Guimo, best countryside breakfast place! Homemade cakes, great breakfast, lunch and healthy juices!