First stop the nudist​ beach

As a solo female traveller of a certain age, you don’t want to feel invisible on holiday but on the other hand, there’s some kind of attention that you’d really rather avoid.

Some years ago I took a last minute solo trip to Croatia, Hvar to be precise, and booked myself into a very nice hotel, Hotel Podstine, for a week of sun, sea and fabulous food. It was here that I met Charlie, a sprightly octogenarian with very few teeth, a full repertoire of Frank Sinatra songs and a penchant for taking his clothes off.

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That tricky second solo trip – Argentina

Be careful whose advice you take when selecting your solo destination

Feeling emboldened by the success of my first incredible solo trip to Borneo (you can read all about that here) I was ready to take on the world and plan my second escape.  Nowhere was out of bounds or off limits – the world was my oyster! I recalled a conversation with a lovely couple that I’d met on that first trip, where I’d asked them about their favourite place in the world and they’d replied Argentina. So, Argentina it was. And reflecting on this now, I can’t actually ever recall thinking to myself that I absolutely had to see Argentina. I chose it specifically on the back of their recommendation combined, perhaps, with the fact that I was working in the wine industry at the time so thought it might be good to visit some vineyards in Mendoza. What was I thinking?   Read more

You’ll love Crete, the tomatoes are amazing!

Top 5 things you absolutely have to eat in Crete and where to find them in Chania

It’s so good to discuss travel with fellow foodies as they feel duty bound to give their feedback in terms of where or what you can eat and drink and share their culinary experiences of your chosen destination. This was exactly the case when I mentioned to a friend my upcoming trip to Crete. His instant reply was that I would absolutely love the place as the tomatoes are amazing! He wasn’t wrong and in fact, the tomatoes were so unbelievably good that they became my breakfast staple, sliced and layered on some toasted local bread, sprinkled with dried oregano and thyme, and topped off with a drizzle of the local olive oil. Simple yet utterly delicious.

I hold my hands up now and confess that I haven’t really thought that much about Greek food. Of course, we all know moussaka ( I make a very good one myself thanks to Queen Delia), feta cheese and the Greek salad, kebabs and various meze dishes but I’m wracking my brains to think of one Greek restaurant that I’ve tried in London in the past ten years and I can’t come up with anything even though I’m a regular on the eating scene here. (Please feel free to comment below with your suggestions if I’ve missed something special!)

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A day trip to Marathi Beach

Seeing more of Crete

After a few days exploring Chania, I decided that I needed to go further afield if I was to experience a little more of the authentic Crete that I was craving. I had my mind set on Marathi Beach – around 30 minutes by car from Chania and back over towards the airport. I’d heard that it was delightful and also had a great place for lunch. I was sold.

I asked one of the two young guys who manned the hotel rection desk how I could get there, not having a rental car. After much deliberation, we decided that I’d be best taking a taxi there as it might be a bit tricky to get there via public transport but I could most definitely get a bus back. I asked him to order a car to pick me up at 10.00am. This, he said, was far too early and I shouldn’t get there before noon at the earliest as it would be freezing on that side of the island first thing. I ignored his advice and arrived at Marathi Beach at 10.30am. It was a chilly 29 degrees C!

I shouldn’t get there before noon at the earliest as it would be freezing on that side of the island. I ignored his advice and arrived at 10.30am. It was a chilly 29 degrees C!

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