My 5 Favourite Runs, From Around The World

My 5 Favourite Runs, From Around The World

It comes as no surprise that my favourite way to see a city is to get up at the crack of dawn and give it the runaround. There’s simply nothing quite like waking up alongside a city;  whether it’s skirting around delivery vans dropping off fresh baked goods for the start of day, or darting businessmen and women hustling to get to work on time, taking an early-morning run while traveling is by far my favourite way to discover a city. You never know what you’ll see before the sun creeps up! Rising early to hit the pavement has led me to discover a Canadian cemetery in the North of Wales, and accidentally join a 5km while spending an anniversary weekend in Pittsburgh and been yelled at by a fellow hostel guest in Geneva who must have dreamed her alarm went off and blamed it on the early risers, or, I suppose I should say runners.

While I’ve had my fair share of fabulous runs to kick-start my travels around the world, here are my top 5! If you’re ever in the area, don’t miss out on the chance to take in the fresh air, the beautiful landscape and hit the ground running:

1. Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C

Starting at Canada Place and ending at English Bay, the approximately 12 kilometer run through Stanley Park is the most amazing and memorable runs I have done to date (the fact that I ran it alongside one of my best friends was totally just the icing on the cake). Next to cyclists, joggers and walkers galore, you’ll weave in-between greenery set directly net to a never-ending coast-line in one of the most beautiful parks in the world. Check out more about Stanley Park and other things to see an do in Vancouver in my blog series on Beautiful British Columbia.

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London Calling! Where To Shop in England’s Bustling Capital

London Calling! Where To Shop in England’s Bustling Capital

So, how was your meal? Delicious? I told you it would be! After having covered Things to See, Things to Do and finally What to Eat in Part 4 of London Calling, it’s time to get to get shopping. Let’s be honest. If you can’t blow all your cash on holiday, when can you eh? Don’t fret! I know we’re not all high rollers, so below you’re going to find some of the best places to shop in London, no matter your budget.

Shop

Visit Harrods Department Store

From food and wine to men and women’s clothing, Harrods proudly offers it all, and fully decorated with union jacks from top to bottom. Despite it’s modest beginnings, this iconic department store has become associated with luxury and fine taste and is known for showcasing well known fashion and beauty lines, and is a hot spot for  celebrity signings and spotting. The store offers everything from British souvenirs like Paddington Bear and Harrods own tinned tea to chocolate covered crickets (trust me, I bought them). Even if you don’t end up buying anything, it’s worth a trip inside Harrods to get a feel for where the upper crust of London society spend their hard earned money. The building is beautiful inside and out and you can enjoy 7 floors of shopping fun.

Step into Marks and Spencer 

Lovingly referred to as “Marks and Sparks” by lovers of this British chain, Marks and Spencer offer delicious treats for all to enjoy including my absolute favourite indulgence: Battenburg Cake – a light sponge cake that is checkered in pink and yellow and covered in a delicious layer of marzipan (and I don’t even really like marzipan!) Besides having delightful snacks that can intrigue any visitor, Marks and Spencers also has a (relatively conservative) line of clothing that features, according to my father, the most comfortable underwear in the world. Men, act now! Women, you also might find something of interest. This will most likely take the form of hot cross buns or Rowntree (now owned by Nestle) candies like fruit pastilles. Delicious. Go ahead, indulge.

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London Calling! Where To Eat In England’s Bustling Capital

London Calling! Where To Eat In England’s Bustling Capital

My apologies, you’ve been so busy reading – you must be starving! We all know that one of the best ways to explore a new country is by trying the local cuisine. Well, it’s officially time to let your taste buds guide you. Following up on Part 1 (Things to See) and Part 2 (Things to Do) of “London Calling”, this is where you get to drool over some of the best culinary treats London has to offer. From traditional pub fare to the deliciously exotic, here are the best places (and dishes) to try during your time in London – Bon Appetit!

Eat

Traditional Pub Fare

No matter where you are in London, you are guaranteed to find a pub waiting to welcome you with doors wide open. Whether it’s a pub full of locals on the edge of a city or a bustling center where football fans come to feed, a visit to an English pub is a necessary experience for every visitor to London! If you’re not sure what to order, try one of these traditional dishes:

Fish and Chips: Battered cod or haddock served with Chips (french fries) or Mushy Peas (dried marrowfat peas soaked overnight and simmered with sugar/salt and sometimes flavoured with mint), tartar sauce and a wedge of lemon. Drown your chips in some malt vinegar and enjoy!

Bangers and Mash: Sausages and mashed potatoes. That’s about it!

Steak and Ale Pie: The Brits are known for their pies, from steak and ale to chicken pot pie, you’ll find at least one pie on every menu that offers traditional English fare. Encrusted in a golden flaky bubble, pies are normally served quite warm and can be made with just about anything.

Traditional English Breakfast: If you’re looking to stalk up on calories before taking off for a day touring the city, then load up on a traditional English breakfast served with back bacon, sausages, black pudding (blood pudding), eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms, fried bread and baked beans. You’ll be all set to take on whatever adventures the city has in store!

Two of my favourite pubs in London are:

The Red Lion, located at 48 Parliament Street, London, SW1A 2NH, the Red Lion was and is a watering hole for the political and social elite. A favourite of Sir Winston Churchill, anyone with an ounce of British blood running through their veins will enjoying paying their respects by enjoying a pint and toasting to the great (and late) Prime Minister.

The White Lion, located at 24 James Street, London, WC2E 8NS in Covent Garden

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