Tag Archives: #travelblog

Old Town of Chora Naxos, Greece

Naxos is the biggest of the Cycled islands and one of the most underestimated Greek islands. It is not that famous like Mykonos, Santorini or Rhodes so that makes it perfect for a relaxed vacation. Naxos has its own beauty – sandy beaches, small villages and mountain hills.

Chora (also known as Naxos City) is the biggest city on the island, it is situated on the west coast of Naxos. The Old Town of Chora is located in the city centre, close to the harbour and it is the most visited place on the island. The tiny streets are hiding a lot of picturesque spots and breathtaking panoramic views.

naxos_xoxogabrielle

 

My two favourite places in Chora are the streets of The Old Market, following them you will get to  The Castle.

naxos_xoxogabrielle1

The Old Market is the perfect walking area, with its narrow streets and nice shops where you can find unique handmade souvenirs, jewels, clothes. There are also a couple of good restaurants and coffee shops where you can try some of the greek dishes and drinks.

naxos_xoxogabrielle2

naxos_xoxogabrielle3

naxos_xoxogabrielle5

naxos_xoxogabrielle7The Castle (Kastro) was built in 1207, when Marco Sanudo conquered Naxos and established the Duchy of Naxos (also known as The Duchy of  the Aegean). The Castle had three gates – but only two exist today – The Strong Gate (Trani Porta) and Paraporti. While walking through the streets of the Castle area you can visit  the Venetian museum, Tower of Crispi, the Catholic Cathedral, the School of Commerce, the Archaeological Museum.  For me It is one of the most relaxing and charming places, it amazed me with its tranquility and atmosphere. A part from the most popular touristic sights I found my own favourite spots.

naxos_xoxogabrielle6

naxos_xoxogabrielle9

naxos_xoxogabrielle7

naxos_xoxogabrielle8

xoxo,

Gabrielle

One afternoon in Apollonas Naxos

Apollonas is an old pretty small fishermen`s village located on the northeastern coast. The distance from the capital is around 35 km and on the way from Hora to this picturesque village you will enjoy  beautiful landscapes and view over the sea.

 

 

Apollonas is very relaxing place and it has its own charm. You can enjoy the beach or just go for a walk around the costal area. There are also a couple of restaurants and cafeterias where you can take a rest and enjoy some of the local dishes and drinks.

Very close by is also the 10-metre tall statue of Dionysus which is worth the visit. It is impressive huge piece of art of its time. While you are there you can also enjoy the gorgeous view over the village.

 

 

P.S: There is nothing better than exploring new places! Have you been to Greece?

 

xoxo,

Gabrielle

Why you should visit Sicily next?

Since it is almost spring.. oh finally! I can’t wait to put away all those winter clothes.. Isn’t it the best time to plan next trip or summer vacation? When it is warm and sunny,  when I close my eyes I see a beautiful island, endless beach, palm trees and turquoise water.

One of the most gorgeous islands in Europe is Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean sea and it is the southern part of Italy.

sicily_xoxogabrielle5Photo: Mount Etna

Amazing Landscapes

Sicily can offer to its guests different landscapes – from agriculture, through beautiful beaches to mount Etna. Etna is the tallest active volcano in Europe and it is located on the east coast of Sicily, close to Taormina and Catania. Etna is also one of the most active volcanos in the world which makes the visit unique and interesting experience.

sicily_xoxogabriellePhoto: Enna

Sicilian Beaches 

Here the beaches are over 280 and they are very different – from rocky coasts to soft shinny sands, from dark blue to clean turquoise waters. One of the most popular beaches are San Vito lo Capo in Trapani, Mondello beach in Palermo, Taormina`s beach and Scala dei Turchi but of course you can always find a hidden spot and be far from the crowd.

sicily_xoxogabrielle2Photo: Southern beach

Sicily is different than Northern Italy

in many ways.. From the food to the lifestyle everything is quite different and not in a bad way. Sicily enjoys the life calm, quite and with no stress which makes it a good place for vacation.

History

Sicily have been influenced by so many cultures because of its central location and natural recourses. The island was colonised by Greeks, then it was a part of Romans Empire but also it was influenced by spanish, arabs and etc.  While in Sicily you can’t miss visiting Agrigento – Valley of Temples, Siracuse, Taormina,Catania and Ragusa.

sicily_xoxogabrielle3Photo: Ragusa Ibla

Cultural events & traditions

In Sicily you can experience different celebrations – from traditional celebration in connection to the church to celebrations for arts and local foods. Sicilians have a lot of traditions they still follow , they are very religious and close to their families.

sicily_xoxogabrielle6Photo: Siracuse

Sicilians are very friendly and warm-welcoming

I can’t skip the fact that Sicilians are so warm-hearted people. They are kind and very polite. if you need something, they definitely will try to help you. Only difficulty you may face is that most of the people don’t speak English.

 Food 

In Sicily you can try all Italian favourites – pizza, pasta and etc. But try also some of the Sicilian specialties like the sweet cannoli – a fried tubular shell stuffed with a sweet ricotta, tasty arancini – stuffed rice balls or refreshing granita – shredded ice with different flavours.

Wine 

Wine culture in Sicily dates from thousands of years, the myths tells how god Dionysos brought the grapes to the island himself. Sicily is famous with its wines – home land of Marsala wine – dry or sweet red, Nero d`Avola – strong red and others, so try them out. Cheers!

ripe-grapes-in-vineyard-picjumbo-comPhoto: Vineyard

Coffee culture

Not much of a surprise here.. For all Italians coffee is very important part of the day, it is not only a drink but it is time to socialise, to meet friends and to discuss some news and passions. Sicilians drink a lot of coffee – from early morning till late after they have dinner.

sicily_xoxogabrielle7

P.S: Let`s meet in Sicily!

xoxo,
Gabrielle

Norway – Ice, Beauty and Happiness

My second trip in 2017, was to Norway. I had the amazing chance to spend one week in this amazing place. I flight from Bucharest to Oslo, the flight took about two and half hours.

flight_xoxogabrielle

When I arrived in Oslo, the very first thing I noticed was the smell of pine trees. Since it was end of February, I was expecting to be much colder. It wasn’t that bad but my suggestion is to try to visit Norway during warmer months.

All the people I met in Norway were very helpful and friendly. So no surprise Norway is one of the happiest countries.

I got a couple of hours in Oslo, and here is what I saw:

oslo_xoxogabrielle1

oslo_xoxogabrielle2

oslo_xoxogabrielle3

oslo_xoxogabrielle4

oslo_xoxogabrielle5

oslo_xoxogabrielle6

oslo_xoxogabrielle7

oslo_xoxogabrielle8

oslo_xoxogabrielle9

Then I continued my trip by train from Oslo to Lillehammer, which is small city situated northern than the capital. Lillehammer is located near lake Mjøsa, all surrounded by mountains. The city centre is full of shops, warm coffee shops and beautiful wooden houses.

lillehammer_xoxogabrielle

Close to Lillehammer is the famous Lysgårdsbakken Ski Jumping Arena. Norway is of course the perfect place for skiing and other winter sports.

Lillehammer_xoxogabrielle

Norway is so beautiful – white snow and  threes peeking out, pretty houses with huge windows and tiny paths to the street. Norway is coziness – a fireplace, warm blankets and some cappuccino. Norway is calmness – piece and quiet.

horsjo_xoxogabrielle

horsjo_xoxogabrielle2

And the only thing I was sorry about was the fact I haven’t got the chance to see the breathtaking Northern lights even after a couple go tries – freezing and impatiently waiting far from the city lights…  but of course it is a good reason to go back again!

P.S: Have you been in Norway? 

xoxo,

Gabrielle