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Is Barcelona on your travel list for this year? It should be 🙂 This lively city has some crazy architecture and delicious food, so it’s definitely worth a visit.

Barcelona is calling for your attention!

Barcelona, the jewel and pride of every Catalan, is a must visit destination offering loads of fun, art, architecture, beaches and culture. The city has an excellent connection with the rest of Europe via its airport, where you’ll find connections for every pocket – from low cost flights to top quality airlines. If you’re thinking of a car hire in Barcelona – our advice is to hire one at Barcelona Airport, as it is so much easier and faster to pick it up and drop it off without wondering through the narrow streets of Barcelona.

Beautiful Barcelona city

Barcelona definitely attracts masses, and the reason is simple: It offers something for everyone. Besides from getting your share of sea and sun in Barcelona, you can immerse yourself in a number of activities, from visiting the Barcelona Aquarium, strolling the hectic streets, feeling the football spirit on the FC Barcelona Stadium to visiting museums and gallerias. Here, tourism is present throughout the whole year, with a peak season in July and August, so prepare thyself for loads of tourists!
In short, Barcelona is colourful, bustling with life and will keep you occupied as a busy bee. But let’s not forget the pleasure of sitting in one of Barcelona’s many bars – the joy of life is after all in little things.

Start your trip with a car hire in Barcelona

Barcelona is the capital of Catalonia, an autonomous community of the Kingdom of Spain and with more than 1.6 million inhabitants it is the second largest city in Spain. Located at the Mediterranean Sea its location is of a great strategic and merchants importance.
Once in Barcelona, you cannot avoid the touristy areas. You can park your hired car in Barcelona on one of the many narrow streets, but be aware you’ll spend some time in search for a free parking space. It is part of the experience! Start your day with a walk along the Rambla street, full of artists, musicians, and the laid-back Spanish just sitting on a chair and observing the passers-by. If you find yourself suddenly surrounded by well-dressed and elegant people, chances are you are near Passeig de Gràcia, the most fashionable street in the city. Absorb the street’s culture while there though, and don’t miss the Gaudi’s dreamy architecture of the Casa Batlló, La Pedrera and other Art Nouveau buildings.
City markets are always a great place to visit, regardless of where you are, and Market of la Boquería is definitely a place that will awaken all your senses. With a first-hand view of all the colorful ingredients of the Mediterranean cuisine you’ll suddenly realize of how the time flies, so stop for a caña and some tapas. Yum!

A true sensation is the Barcelona’s nightlife – the streets are full of life, so mingle with the locals in one of the barrios. Las Ramblas, the Gothic Quarter, El Born, Gracia, L’Eixample…chose your best neighborhood for night adventurers. Generally speaking, Las Ramblas is a great option for the early stages of the night, the Gothic Quarter is packed with stylish night clubs, while El Born is a laid-back district with night cafes and bars, with the Passeig del Born being the heart of the district.
If you’re looking for some jazz and Flamenco music, we highly recommend the Jazz Sí Club, located in the Raval district. There’s always a Friday night Flamenco show, but arrive early, as it fills up very quickly! The seats are improvised and you can take the stairs, from where you’ll have an even better view on the artists. A great thing in Barcelona for all night merrymakers is that Spanish love to eat outside into the late-night hours, so you’ll always be able to grab a snack along with your drink.
When in Barcelona you cannot ignore the Sagrada Familia, a church under construction since the 1882. Skip-the-line tickets are sold almost on every corner of the city, funnily though, the waiting line to enter the Sagrada Familia is still terribly long. From the outside, the church is impressive and just by having a walk around this Gaudí’s masterpiece, you’ll get the originality of the modernista movement! Have you ever seen a church decorated with oranges and water melons? Only in Barcelona!
It is for a reason that Antoni Gaudí is called the face of Catalan modernism and Park Güell is another product of imagination of this famous architect. A great place to escape the radiating sun and relax in the shades of the Sala Hipóstila. If you’re in luck and there’s a musician playing in one of the halls, the atmosphere will be just perfect with its echo sound. We definitely had a great time!

Once tired of all the art and architecture of the city, go to the Barcelona Aquarium. It is one of the richest marine centers regarding the Mediterranean fish species with a fascinating 80 meters long underwater tunnel. It is a great sensation to walk below all those fishes and sharks!
A step away from the Aquarium is Barcelona’s most famous Barceloneta Beach. A known place with a line-up of bars and clubs that serve food and drinks late into the wee hours of the morning. Barceloneta Beach is also popular during daytime and if you’d like to spend your time at a less crowdy area, drive to one of many other beaches near Barcelona.

Barcelona roads

Barcelona and its surroundings with a car hire

Barcelona is a perfect base camp for visiting its surroundings. With a car hire in Barcelona, we were able to visit the picture-perfect little towns, that are all just a short drive away. It would be a real pity not to visit at least one of the small towns. Also, if you’d like to spend your time at a less crowded area, drive to one of many other beaches near Barcelona.
Sitges is a small town by the sea, to the west of Barcelona and is perfect for a relaxed sun-bathing. You can choose everything from family and nudist to gay-friendly beaches. The town has its collection of artistic buildings, so enter the Sitges streets and spend some time wondering around.
Probably the best-known place near Barcelona is Montserrat, an impressive mountain, just an hour drive to the north from the city. Beside the beauty of the rocky peaks, Montserrat is well known for the Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey dated from the 10th century and home to the black virgin.
To the northeast from Barcelona, stretches the Costa Brava, with Girona being the biggest town of the region. On your way to Girona, you’ll be passing many villages converted into big hotel resorts, like Lloret del Mar. On the contrary, Girona is a beautiful medieval town with a centre where history lingers among the narrow-cobbled streets and a walled old Quarter. Climbing on one of the watchtowers will definitely give you an amazing view of the surrounding scenery. With a number of museums ready to educate you, Girona is a great destination rich in history.
The road from Girona continues to the north and takes you to Figueres. Figueres is a roughly 1 hour drive from Girona, and is especially famous for its Theatre – Museum Dalí – a surrealistic red building with giant eggs on top. With splendid architecture and a medieval castle, Figueres and Girona make a great day trip destination, that you leave wishing you could dedicate it more time. The rest of Costa Brava is full of pretty villages and is a great retreat from the busy city of Barcelona.
With all this small day trips that you can make, a car hire in Barcelona will definitely pay off! Driving in and around Barcelona will be easy, and as the roads in Spain are modern and in good condition your road trip will turn out hassle-free and a pleasant colouring of your Barcelona experience.

Somewhere in Japanese Alps

When I think of Japan, I probably think of two things (that are actually opposites): crazy, vibrant big cities like Tokyo; and small villages with old houses, smelling of tatami mats, zen garden outside and matcha tea. No? 🙂 So, when in fact the big cities are quite easy to find (and all the fun things you can do – like video games, karaoke rooms and shopping), the small villages are in fact somehow … hidden 🙂

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We’ve been away from home for quite some time now and from time to time, of course we miss our home country Slovenia. Usually at the start of a new season when everyone is so happy that spring finally came or that first day of summer when everyone knows that vacation is just around the corner 🙂 So, if you love nature and hiking, why not spend it in our beautiful country? 🙂

Zreče Pohorje, lake and nature in May.

An active summer in the heart of Pohorje

Zreče Pohorje is the perfect destination for those keen on spending an active summer in the heart of nature. This idyllic location provides many opportunities for sporting activities, from hiking and cycling, to water activities in one of the outside pools, beach volleyball, Nordic walking, fishing and golfing. Anyone who loves nature and lives an active lifestyle can find an activity that suits their taste and desires.

What to do first?

For families or individuals looking for an active way to spend their free time or family vacation, Zreče Pohorje is the perfect place where they can enjoy activities that are adapted to all generations. Sporty individuals, searching for some exciting activities in the midst of untamed nature, can choose between a number of adrenaline filled activities to blow off some steam. On the other hand there are equally as many opportunities to relax and take a break. In every way, Zreče Pohorje is the ultimate getaway from the everyday hustle and bustle.

Hiking or cycling trail in Zreče Pohorje (Slovenia) in March.

Hiking

A number of hiking trails and paths surround Zreče, where vacationers can take relaxed walks or set on long hikes along the local landmarks. The many footpaths will take them to discover local forests, take a stroll around the Zreče Lake, walk through the paved city streets and promenades or visit nearby vineyards.
For those in search of something more challenging, hiking onto the nearby hills offers an exciting experience. Whether it is enjoying the serene scenery of the mountains and being one with the boulders, or just visiting an alpine hut to enjoy local cuisine and chat about Slovenian customs and folklore, no day spent hiking is ever wasted.

Nordic walking

Nordic walking is another great and popular way to exercise while enjoying the picturesque environment. Grabbing a couple of poles and heading into the great unknown can lead one to find great and unexpected things.

Cycling

Zreče Pohorje also offers numerous cycling trails and opportunities for adrenaline filled experiences, either by choosing to follow the marked trails, using the assistance of contemporary satellite navigation systems or by being assisted by the local cycling guides.
Going on a cycling adventure through the rich forests and mountain trails from Zreče to Rogla, which entails about 15 kilometers of exciting bike riding, is an unbelievable experience that shouldn’t be written about, but rather experienced firsthand. And for those craving maximum adrenaline, Rogla Biking Park offers six trails (together measuring about 7.500 meters) of different difficulties, where some invigorating mountain biking can be enjoyed.
Even though Zreče Pohorje is the ultimate playground for sports junkies, those who prefer a more relaxed cycling trip can still explore the beautiful Zreče and its surroundings, by going sightseeing or visiting one of the local tourist farms, where they can enjoy an authentic home-made meal, while being seduced by the vast views of the romantic vineyards above Slovenske Konjice.

Beautiful waterfall in Zreče Pohorje (Slovenia).

And relaxation …

After a good hike or cycling trip, nothing feels as refreshing as jumping into a pool or sitting by the lake, rod in hand, not really worrying about the daily catch, but simply enjoying the serene sound of birds tweeting, frogs ribbiting and crickets chirping …
And after such immense relaxation, one surely has collected enough energy to enjoy a game of volleyball or golf with friends!
Now that’s what you call a vacation! All summer long and even throughout the rest of the year, Zreče Pohorje offers a lot to those who wish to spend their leisure time in the untamed nature, exploring and enjoying all the possibilities that it has to offer.

Do you want to see how Slovenian mountains look in winter? Take a look at snowy Krnica valley.

South Korea was never high on our bucket list of countries to visit last trip but this time we were excited to come. We were pleasantly surprised it has its own personality and that it’s not similar to any other countries, not even Japan. Here are couple of facts that we noticed immediately:

  • All hail the skincare: South Korea is big on skincare. Everywhere you look, you can see girls (and boys) with dewy, glowy skin, like they’re ready for a photoshoot.
  • B&W scale: Seems like if you buy and oversized white t-shirt and black chino pants, you have nothing to miss. It’s actually all you need in your wardrobe.
  • Spit away: While in Japan, we got so used to some rules (like not eating on subway, queuing etc…) that we thought same would apply to South Korea. Nope! South Koreans are way more relaxed and rules are more loose. We occasionally gawked at young girls spitting on the pavement.
  • Koreans are cute!: Girls have these perfect faces and boys look manly but sweet.
  • No pressure: When you go to a restaurant, nobody pressures you to have a drink. There’s always free water available and actually most people don’t even drink anything extra. On the other hand, there are no toilets in the restaurants.
  • Speaking of toilets: It seems that used toilet paper goes in the bin next to the toilet. Not that I know, because all signs are in Korean.
  • Nobody speaks English: Guesthouse owners, please be my friends.
  • Google translate works!: Even offline, live picture translate works. Yaaaaaas, menu decoded!
  • Obsession that never stops: K POP! It’s insane and the best thing is to watch it on TV and just … wonder.

You probably known that Indonesia has over 17.000 islands. 17.000! Some are very touristic like Bali and some still have indigenous tribes like Siberut. Wakatobi islands are one of those that are very slowly waking up to tourism. If you’re reading this, you’re probably interested in remote islands or diving. Wakatobi is known to have one of the best dive sites in the world.

For us, the best travel destinations are off the grid tiny islands with good and healthy marine life, preferably in Indonesia (you know – if you’ve ever dived or snorkeled here, it’s hard to go back) and that’s why we decided to visit Wakatobi islands. Google maps portraits them as the tiniest dot and there is very limited information on the internet. We had a blast, improvised for 3 weeks and then decided to write this travel guide for Wakatobi islands that will help you if you want to visit.


It’s remote, it’s amazing, it has one of the most amazing diving sites in the world and above all, it has the friendliest people on Earth 🙂


Where are Wakatobi islands?

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