Having spent over 24 hours travelling (20+ hours of flying and the rest stuck in transit) and fallen asleep for 14 hours, I believe that I am well on the way to recovering from jetlag :)
So what did I get up to?
London - where I spent the most time
- I have family in London, so it was nice to catch up with them :) They live in Notting Hill, which meant we didn't have to trek to go anywhere central
- Notting Hill = Portobello Markets
- Borough Markets
- Lots and lots of eating
- Lunch at Oblix in the Shard, tallest building in the EU
|Entree buffet - the Israeli cous cous was to die for|
|Under their selection of rare teas - White-Silver Needle tea|
|Scones with jam and clotted cream|
I didn't think I would ever find good coffee in Europe (except perhaps Italy, which I haven't visited yet), but my cousin showed us a few good coffee places in Notting Hill, which made me miss Sydney a little less:
- Granger & Co (175 Westbourne Grove London W11 2SB)
|A FLAT WHITE!|
|Ricotta hotcakes with banana|
- Ottolenghi (63 Ledbury Rd, London W11 2AD)
- Daylesford (208-212 Westbourne Grove London W11 2R)
An organic store and cafe rolled into one, it's a great place for caffeine addicts, organic-produce-consumers and vegetarians.
- Watched a matinee (afternoon) performance
- Visited Bicester Village and a few others in Oxfordshire
- And because we don't have enough in Sydney, we visited one of the new Westfields to see Despicable Me 2
Bruges, in Belgium, is a quaint town in Belgium. It was full of chocolate, canals, frites (fries), horse-drawn carriages, Belgian chocolate and set menus with 1/2 roast chickens/ Flemish beef stews/ mussels/ chocolate mousse.
By this time, my relatives were craving Asian food (and I was craving soup). So we had ramen and pho, which were surprisingly delicious. I was told I shouldn't be surprised about the Vietnamese, since the French used to occupy Vietnam. As for the Japanese, I don't know how a little Japan of sorts ended up around Rue de Richelieu.
|Mozart Requiem at La Madeleine Church|
|Pho 14 spring rolls|
|Le Bon Marche|
|French bubble tea - not great, sadly|
|Ramen - extra rich, which we misconstrued to be spicy|
|Marche des enfants rouges|
|The market was just starting to open|
|Merci, a French store, was connected to this book cafe|
|This is not a book|
|The Marais district|
|Antique store in Village St-Paul|
|Sunday brunch at Coutume|
- I also managed to cross off all the items on my 'to buy' list:
- Beige Burberry trench
- Dark brown leather jacket
- Numerous dresses, pants, etc.
- 2 pairs of shoes
- 100+ euros of makeup from Sephora
- Belgian chocolate
- Innumerable socks and other undergarments
EDIT: Due to the popular demand of Spidey, I have included a photo of our frites and moules.