WHY YOU SHOULD TRAVEL EUROPE BY TRAIN

Unfortunately, traveling the world by plane has a nasty impact on the environment. Guest editor Larissa traveled by train to show you how beautiful Europe is when you see it from the ground.

Why travel Europe by train?

According to several environmental organisations, the best means to travel is by public transportation. I decided to book an Interrail train trip to explore Europe! This means you buy a ticket that is valid for 30 days and you can hop on or off at any European train station you would like. First of all, the beauty of Europe will pleasantly surprise you. There’s no need to travel half through the world to discover some picture perfect places. It’s closer than you think. This train tour through Europe ended up being one of the best trips of my life.

travelling by train
Ready to travel Europe by train!

First stop: Czech Republic

Okay, to be honest, Prague was a bit too touristy for me. Aa a matter of fact, locals call Prague the Disneyland of Czech Republic and I totally understand why. However, the Alternative City tour showed us a lot of cool hidden gems! Additionally, I could really appreciate the cocktail scene. Go and discover bars like The Alchemist, this place has a mysterious look and feel. Tip: try the ‘choose your fate’ of the cocktail menu, I’ll say no more..

Prague
Seeing Prague from above

Moving on in Czech Republic, we visited a place I really loved: Brno. It’s a local city full of culinary highlights, local delicious wines, pubs and vegan ice creams. Hip and happening! From this little city it’s easy to discover some beautiful castles in Lednice and Valtice. At Valtice palace, you can even try out 100 amazing local wines under the ground. My favorite: number 43, Grand Reserve Chardonnay of 2016. Definitely a winner!

Lednice castle

Next stop: Hungary

The city that surprised me in a good way was definitely Budapest. The city has four sides, the tranquil vibes at the river side, the bustling city with beautiful buildings and culinary highlights (tip: a dinner at Zeller Bistro with live music!), local hangouts in the ruin bars and total relaxation at the bathhouses. This city has a lot to offer, and I enjoyed every bit of it.

Budapest

Zamárdi

After we discovered the whole city in a couple days, we jumped in the train to Zamárdi. This weekend was all about partying and having a good festival time! At the Balaton Lake there was one of the biggest festivals of Hungary: Balaton Sound. Fortunately, the train station was at walking distance of this festival. As soon as we could, we got in our bikini to enjoy the sun, some drinks and dances during the day. After a refreshing shower, we had the whole night to dance again in our festival outfits while enjoying the music of among other Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano and Armin van Buren!

Travel Europe by train

Last stop: Croatia

In Croatia the public transport is not as common, that’s why you can better stop the Interrail when you arrive at Zagreb and continue the trip with a rental car. Our first stop on our road trip through Croatia was the Plitvice Lakes. The best time to visit is early in the morning or late in the afternoon. We arrived around 4 a clock, which was a perfect time to wander around without too much other people. They say the short route takes you about 2 to 3 hours, it took us one and a half hour, so don’t worry about a long hike! Personally, I preferred the Plitvice lakes over the Krka waterfalls. But both are worth seeing during a trip trough Croatia.

Plitvice
The stunning Plitvice lakes

Krka waterfalls

Sibenik

In the evening we arrived in Sibenik. What a lovely town! It’s pure and authentic, very cute and filled with a nice ambience. We stayed at the Heritage Hotel Life Palace and you’ll enjoy the freshest breakfast we’ve had so far. All the ingredients they use in this town is locally produced. Too bad we had to leave after the breakfast to catch our boat to Brac island. By the way, they filmed parts of Game of Thrones in Sibenik, remember the city of many faces?

Sibenik

Brac island

Last but not least, we ended the trip with some nice beach days at Brac island. This place is built to celebrate a nice tranquil holiday. We didn’t want to leave! At the famous beach ‘Zlatni Rat’ you can rent a beach bed for about 9,50 euro and enjoy the nice weather whole day long. This was exactly what we needed after the busy trip we’ve had travelling around in Europe.

Brac island

Time & Cost

In conclusion, the whole trip took us 17 days in total, but it felt like months as we saw and experienced so much in such short amount of time. One youth travel ticket costed me €515,- for 2 persons and includes all the above mentioned stops. For adults above 27 years old ticket prices start around 285 per person. Your train ticket will be valid for 30 days so you have no rush! Accommodations are not included. I enjoyed every minute of the trip and recommend this to everyone who has the same addiction as I have: Wanderlust.

Love,

Larissa

Ostrava | Czech charm meets industrial chique

The Czech Republic is certainly no stranger to foreign tourism. However, most tourists who take a visit to this country limit themselves to Prague. The vibrant city Ostrava often gets overlooked by travellers but has a lot to offer.

From skating down the Pustevny mountain to exploring underground coal mines and even partying at one of the best music festivals in Europe.. Bringing a visit to Ostrava will be a pleasant surprise for anyone looking to get off the beaten track..

Where is Ostrava?

The city isn’t too famous so there’s a big chance that most people don’t know about this place. That given, Ostrava is the third largest city in the Czech Republic and it’s located in the very Northeast of the country. The city was for a long time known (among Czechs) for being unattractively industrial because it was historically associated with the production of pig-iron and coal. Its reputation as an industrial workaday city has prevented it from seeing the tourism it deserves. Although it is not as classically beautiful as some other Czech cities, its history as the epicentre of the country’s mining industry makes it a very fascinating place to visit. Let’s delve into some of the awesome things to do in Ostrava and unique features of the city.

What to do

Masaryk Square:

It is safe to say that Masaryk Square is the central point of the city. It is surrounded by pretty pastel coloured houses with decorated facades. There are quite a few cafés on Masaryk Square, where you can relax after strolling around. The central square is a gorgeous setting and therefore a must-see in Ostrava.

City Hall Tower:

is the Czech Republic’s highest city hall tower! It offers a wonderful panorama view of the surprisingly green city of Ostrava and its surroundings from a height of 73 metres above ground level. On a clear day you can see many of the coal mines and blast furnaces in the area and you can even get a glimpse of the Poland borders.

Ostrava Center

Landek Mining Museum

If you want to learn about the history of Ostrava, the Landek Mining Museum is your calling. This mining museum is the biggest one in the Czech Republic and you get a unique peek behind the curtains of the harsh circumstances the miners worked in. The guides are former mine workers themselves and have a lot of knowledge about the mine. The absolute highlight is going down with an elevator shaft into a restored section of the underground mine. Hungry after the tour? Next to the Museum is a good traditional restaurant with national dishes.

Landek mine Ostrava

The Ostravice river

Is a beautiful river that flows through the city. Great for walking, running, cycling or hanging out in the adjacent park. Looking for more adventurous activities? Rent a raft or canoe and head down the river. It’s a really beautiful trip on the water where you can spot many wild animals. We spotted a baby deer, drinking water at the shore!

Dolní Vítkovice

is a former industrial site used for mining and iron processing. It’s an atmospheric and almost otherworldly industrial area (it looks like something out of a Mad Max movie set) which is being turned into a cultural centre. You can go up in the Bolt tower with a lift and have a view over the whole city. It’s really cool (and a bit scary) when you get to the top, and a great place for photography because of all the surrounding old buildings. The international multi-genre music festival Colours of Ostrava is organized on this venue every year.

Dolci Ostrava

Pustevny mountains

Equally worth visiting are the Pustevny mountains, about half an hour’s drive from Ostrava. A ski lift will take you 1 km above sea level. Once there, you can hike another 100 meter up a wonderful Himalayan inspired walking trail. On the top of the trail you can find a short skywalk with a glass floor where you will enjoy a beautiful view. To get back down the mountain, you can take the ski lift again or rent scooters on which you can drive down (adrenaline-kick assured!).

Bridge Ostrava

Where to stay

Harmony hotel Ostrava:

This hotel is a treat. The beds are very comfortable, the room gets cleaned every day, and the view of the city is amazing. The biggest surprise however is its breakfast. They offer a large selection of fruit, eggs, bacon, vegetables, bread and various types of cheese and salami as well as pancakes and brownies.

Airbnb:

In and around Ostrava there are quite a lot people who offer their room, apartment or house for rent. The advantage of renting an Airbnb is that you can cook for yourself (which saves costs), and you normally have more space than in a hotel room. It is also nice to be among locals if you rent a room in someone’s house! Renting an Airbnb in Ostrava is very affordable. For a small apartment you pay around 25 euros per night.

How to get there

A distance of 1.300 km needs to be covered if you travel from Amsterdam to Ostrava. Taking the airplane is the fastest option. From Amsterdam you can fly to Ostrava via Prague. Another option is flying to Prague and then take the train (3,5 hour) to Ostrava. If you prefer to travel on your own, a car is recommended for transportation. For this you invest half a day on a direct ride, but you can make your holiday a lot more interesting if you dive into the cities that you pass along the way. Berlin and Prague are perfect stopovers to hop through for example. Not in possession of a car and driver’s license? Take the train and go interrailing!

Train to Ostrava

Conclusion

In conclusion, I must say that the entire city has a certain atmosphere, there is something very interesting about Ostrava. The old buildings, abandoned factories, green parks and the nice architecture of the old town all add up to this. In short: there is plenty to do and see in Ostrava! Combining the festival and sightseeing in the city makes up for a perfect Czech trip, and is wholeheartedly recommended!

Are you planning to visit Ostrava one day? Let us know in the comments!

Love,

Iris

*Iris is one of our guest editors from The Netherlands. She’s got a big interest in photography, fashion, spirituality and traveling. She was 3 months old when she was on the plane for the first time and has been to every continent in the meantime. You can follow iris on Instagram.

11 amazing treehouses around the world

Like most kids, we grew up building treehouses and huts, but building a tree house is not childsplay anymore.

Check out these amazing treehouses and find your inner nomad!

Tranquil Resort, India

Wow, what a treehouse! This is not something you can build overnight. No, this is a luxury threehouse in the middle of a coffee plantation in India.
www.tranquilresort.com

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TreeHouse_-_Interior_Verandah_rnpxa0
(Source: tranquil resort)

Tree House Point, USA

Three house point offers several treehouses on the property. Our favorite treehouse is the “Temple of the Blue Moon”. With a hanging bridge leading to the beautiful treehouse, it truly feels magical.  Check their Instagram and be inspired.
www.treehousepoint.com

temple-sh-4
(Source: Treehousepoint)

Free Spirit Sphere Treehouses
Previously featured in my blogpost about the top 5 wanderlust hotels in the world, this is a fairy-tale treehouse you want to sleep in. Lucky for you, it’s possible! Just head down to Canada 🙂 www.freespiritspheres.com
(Source: Free Spririt Sphere)

Yellow Treehouse Restaurant, New Zealand

Not a Treehouse for sleeping or playing but a Treehouse for eating! This restaurant looks like a hot air balloon where you can dream of flying off into a new world. This New Zealand based restaurant has had a lot of media attention so if you want to eat here, make sure you book well in advance! They host private dinners and weddings too.www.redwoodstreehouse.co.nz

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(Source: Yellow Treehouse Restaurant)

Beach Rock Treehouse, Japan

Part of the Beach Rock Village (amazing) in Okinawa, this is a treehouse that was build for a purpose; communicating with the space outside. Feel one with nature. Build and designed by Kobayashi Takashi, It’s also referred to as the ‘plexiglass portal on the world’.

One of the best treehouses ever
(Source: http://www.hometreehome.it/489/)

La Casa Del Arbol, Ecuador

This cute treehouse is not the best looking treehouse in the world but the location is somewhat amazing. You can literally swing over the edge of the world (2660 feet above sealevel!) Thrill seekers from all over the world try to get the rush and sail over the city of Banos. Bucketlist? More info here.

tree-house-banos-ecuador
(Source www.hostalerupcion.com)

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Overlooking an erupting Mt. Tungurahua at the “edge of the world”  (Photo by Sean Hacker Teper)

The “Treehouse Masters” Spirit Treehouse, USA

This is one of the best treehouses build by pete who heads the hit series Treehouse Masters on Discovery Channel. This treehouse solar powered and build in the backyard retreat of a New York based writer. I bet she will get inspired to write some amazing stories in this treehouse! Check here to see part of the episode.

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Source: Discovery Channel

Sleeping in treehouses makes you feel at peace and one with nature

Three Story Treehouse, British Columbia in Canada

It’s a shame that it’s a children attraction, but it doesn’t stop adults climbing inside this enchanted treehouse up in British Columbia. Why only 1 treehouse, if you can build three into one right? More info on www.enchantedforestbc.com

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Part of the enchanted forrest (Source:
Three Story Treehouse)

Mirror Cube, Sweden

It’s a very modern treehouse but because of the mirrors, this structure almost disappears into the trees almost as if it’s a tree itself. Inside it looks incredible cosy and includes a 1 persons bed. Designed by Tham & Videgard architects, this Swedish hotel is definitely worth visiting! They also have other treehouses such as the Cabin and the UFO treehouse. Be aware that it will cost you about 400 euro’s to stay the night.
www.treehotel.se

TreeHotell Photographer Ulf B. Jonsson.
(Source: Treehotel.se)

Monbazillac, France

This treehouse is listed on Airbnb and looks like a castle. It sleeps 2 people and has a lovely bath & bedroom. Book it here!

slide_305092_2616101_free

slide_305092_2616103_free

Aromantica Treehouse, Italy

Now this is a treehouse we can afford. For about 140 euro’s per night you can sleep in this peaceful treehouse. Surrounded by nature, this is the perfect romantic gateway in Italy. It includes a private shower, balcony (with stunning views!) and a beautiful bed. Not convinced yet? Check here and book!

Treehouse-in-Italy-The-Monferrato-Aromanrica-Treehouse

Treehouse-in-Italy-The-Monferrato-Aromanrica-Treehouse-005
(Source: Airbnb)

Love,

Elke

Check here for the top 5 Wanderlust Hotels in the world.

Colours of Ostrava | Europe’s Hidden Festival

The very coolest festival location of the year has been found. An area surrounded by old, industrial buildings is the backdrop for a weekend full of music, workshops, films, theatre, discussions and games. And yet, it is still very unknown in The Netherlands and even Europe. Czech Republic’s best kept festival is Colours of Ostrava.

The Location

Is an international, multi-genre music festival in Ostrava. This city is located in the east of the Czech Republic and is the third biggest city in the country following Prague and Brno. The festival takes place on the breathtaking surroundings of Dolní Vítkovice – the site of former blast furnaces, mines and ironworks. It’s an absolutely stunning and unique industrial area (it looks like something out of a Mad Max movie set) which is being turned into a cultural centre. Colours of Ostrava won several prices such the ALMA Akropolis Live Music Awards for the best music event of the year in the concert / festival category.

Colours of Ostrava Festival

Colours of Ostrava won the Angel Award for the Music Event of the Year, Twice

The Music

During the 4 days in which the Colours of Ostrava festival took place, more than 150 bands played and there was a heaping dose of jazz, world music, rock, pop and alternative music. Although I was certainly not familiar with a large part of the line-up, I loved walking around and discovering new bands and artists. Perhaps the most interesting stage, and the one most prominent, was the Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey Experience. Surrounded by steel pipes and high industrial walls, tattoo artists were at work, a DJ booth was installed, movies were played, and two giant games of Jenga were placed against one of the walls. Overall, the festival had first-rate jazz performances, great (known and unknown) rock bands, and international artists as The Cure, ZAZ, Years & Years and Florence + The Machine. Also a nice fact: Every year the organization gives a handful of emerging artists from the Czech Republic the opportunity to put their names on the map.

Colours of Ostrava Festival

The line-up of previous years included: Imagine Dragons, Norah Jones, Kygo, Clean Bandit, Rudimental, Ziggy Marley, London Grammar, Aurora, Paul Kalkbrenner & many more.

Food & Drinks

The food at the festival was fantastic and enormously varied. Many stalls were scattered throughout the site where, in addition to the typical festival food (burgers, fries, pasta, pizza), there were also many Czech specialties and healthy dishes available. I have never seen so many vegan and vegetarian food stalls on a festival as this one. Moreover, the price of the food is cheaper than it is at festivals in Western Europe. For a (vegan) burger you pay around 5 euros, for fries 2 euros, for a hot dog 2 euros and for a mushroom quesadilla 3 euros. For the drinks you first must do a one time purchase of 1 euro for a plastic cup. You can clamp this cup on your pants or belt which is very handy. The drinks were also very affordable. A beer of 500 ml only costed 2 euros and a G&T was around 4 euros.

 Colours of Ostrava Festival

Colours of Ostrava really is a fairly undiscovered gem!

The People

On the first day of the festival, I wanted to explore the terrain and started wandering on my own. I wasn’t feeling solo for long as I came in contact with some lovely locals who showed me around. We had surprisingly little difficulty in understanding each other as they could speak English quite well. Most of the food stall staff were also able to speak English and could translate items on their menu if needed. Overall, about 90% of the festival visitors came from the Czech Republic and neighbouring countries like Poland and Slovakia. The remaining 10% consisted visitors from all over the world.

 Colours of Ostrava

How to get there?

A distance of 1.300 km needs to be covered if you travel from Amsterdam to Ostrava. But there are several alternate travel options. Colours of Ostrava offers a bus that is leaving from The Netherlands (and Belgium) every year, which will drop you off at the entrance of the festival. If you prefer to accelerate things, then the airplane will be the best option. From Amsterdam you can fly to Ostrava via Prague. After landing, shuttle services and taxis are available outside the doors of the airport to take you to the festival in no time. Another option is flying to Prague and then taking the train to Ostrava. If you prefer to travel on your own, a car is recommended for transportation. For this you invest half a day on a direct ride, but you can make your holiday a lot more interesting if you dive into the cities that you pass along the way. Berlin and Prague are perfect stopovers to hop through for example. Not in possession of a car and driver’s license? Take the train and go interrailing!

Train station Czech Republic

My Verdict

Overall, Colours of Ostrava has absolutely astonished me. Both the location and programme are filled with surprises that will make you return from this festival with a wealth of new experiences. What I personally found so fascinating about Colours of Ostrava was that it was so much more than just a music festival. Aside from the performances and dozens of food trucks selling wonderful food, there were tons of other activities to do. In addition, the festival is also a good option if you are on a budget. A ticket for the festival only costs €105 euros for all 4 days and for 9 euros per person and 10 euros per tent you spend the night at the campsite.

Colours of Ostrava, I will be back!

Love,

Iris

Fairytale guide to Lauterbrunnen

Arriving in the Jungfrau region in Switzerland is rather special to say the least. The landscape changes and massive mountains will pop up around you. Lauterbrunnen is the cherry on the cake.

Lauterbrunnen is situated in the Swiss area of Bern in an area known as the Jungfrau Region. The town finds itself in a lush valley with several waterfalls and is a hit amongst travelers on Instagram. If you have never visited this place, you will soon after seeing these pictures.

Lauterbrunen village
Entering the stunning village of Lauterbrunnen

Where to stay

You have a few options, but we decided to stay in an Airbnb. The reason why I love staying in someones house or apartment, is because it gives my trip a more personal experience. It feels like home away from home. As a result, my eye caught one of the most amazing Airbnb’s I have ever stayed at. Waking up with a waterfall in the backyard was not something I had experienced before.

Lauterbrunnen

The apartment was big enough for 4 people and was equipped with an open kitchen, a spacious bathroom, 2 bedrooms and a living area. And last but not least, the outside terrace was facing the 2 waterfalls. Priceless! My experience was pleasant, the apartment was clean and everything was explained clearly.

Lauterbrunnen Airbnb
My Airbnb in Lauterbrunnen

What to do

  • Hiking
    Most people visit Lauterbrunnen because they are going to hike around the area such as Mänlichen, Jungfraujoch or Grindewald. From Lauterbrunnen you take the train that passes Wengen (a must stop for photo’s of the valley!) and it will take you as far as Kleine Scheidegg. From there you can also take the gondel up to Jungfraujoch and the famous James Bond platform.
  • Visit the Trummelbach Waterfalls
    These are the eye catchers of Lauterbrunnen and you can walk straight behind the falls with stairs going up. Tip: If you visit them around 7pm, it won’t be busy at all, even during high season.
  • Go Paragliding
    If you visit the Bern region, you will see a lot of parachutes and paragliders in the air. This is the ultimate activity for thrill seekers because the backdrop is stunning. Would you dare?
  • Explore Lauterbrunnen Village
    Because of its popularity, the town center can be quite busy during high season. However, this is the case in the morning, so get up early if you want to take some good photo’s.

Train Lauterbrunnen Switzerland
Traveling by Swiss train

Where to eat

Because we stayed in an Airbnb we opted for the local COOP supermarket in the village and enjoyed a home cooked meal. Restaurant prices can be extremely high unfortunately but there are a few places in Lauterbrunnen that are worth visiting and won’t leave you with empty pockets.

Café Lauterbrunnen | Wander-Lust

  • Coffee Bar Airtime
    They serve flat whites so I was sold. This cute coffee bar is located in the middle of the main street so you can’t miss it. They serve breakfast, cakes, healthy juices and lunch. They only accept cash so bring some!
  • Flavours
    Sandwiches are made to order, the coffee is actually done well and they serve homemade Focaccias! Burgers and salads are also on the menu.
  • Eiger Guesthouse Restaurant
    This place offers nice take away pizza’s that you can enjoy on a bench looking at the waterfall.

Tip: If you have kid(s); there is a nice playground near the waterfall and just 10 minutes walk from the main street. The best view from a children’s playground I’ve ever seen!

Read more about Switzerland!

Love,

Elke

Stan & Co has settled down in Amsterdam

After Utrecht, Arnhem and Zeist, a fourth STAN & CO restaurant has opened up in Amsterdam. A beautiful bar-restaurant with a tasteful menu and amazing interior! Here too they do not deviate from their concept: there is no breakfast, lunch or dinner menu. You can order what you want, whenever you want! Very nice if you are always late for breakfast (like me) or want a piece of salmon for lunch.

Interior

The building consists out of creative meeting spaces and co-workspaces that breathes inspiration and creativity in terms of interior and design. The entrance to STAN & CO is currently being transformed into a pop-up gallery where changing exhibitions of artists are exhibited (pretty cool!). Once inside, you will immediately notice the large island bar in which a big staircase rises to the upper floor with an additional bar and DJ booth. A warm pink-orange colour is combined with the sturdy industrial style of the building. The new STAN consists of a large space (two floored) with many different places to sit, however they managed to make it very cozy. You can also settle down on the comfy couches with your laptop, making it a nice spot to study or to have a meeting.

Stand & Co Amsterdam

stan & Co Amsterdam

Flexible menu

STAN & CO serves a wide selection of dishes that can be ordered at any time of the day. A steak for breakfast, a cocktail with lunch or a brioche egg benedict in the evening; it’s all possible! Lovers of Asian cuisine will also find ramen noodle bowls, the bao bun shiitake and the Asian salad. There are also many vegetarian dishes on the menu, some of which can be prepared vegan. And for the sweet tooths, the “sweets” category on the menu is a must go, The STAN’s SNCKR (a homemade square snicker) and the #OMG (a very photo genetic oreo parfait) are recommended! In addition, STAN & CO offers a nice selection of wines, beers, cocktails, special coffees and freshly made lemonades.

Menu Stan & Co Amsterdam

Groups & Parties

This all-day hotspot is easily accessible and has a menu where everyone can find something they like! It is also a very good spot if you want to eat with a larger group. Also, they are planning to have a DJ program running from Thursday to Sunday evening. Overall, the new STAN & CO is a cozy hang-out / place to settle down with your friends when you are in the Amsterdam East area, whether for a coffee on the terrace or for a cocktail in the evening.

Stan & Co
Weesperplein 4A, Amsterdam
Website

Love,

Iris

*Iris is one of our guest editors from The Netherlands. She’s got a big interest in photography, fashion, spirituality and traveling. She was 3 months old when she was on the plane for the first time and has been to every continent in the meantime. You can follow iris on Instagram.

5 x picnic in Rotterdam

Summer has officially started and we are looking forward to all long summer nights and picnics in the park. To make things a little easier, we’ve listed 5 restaurants that sell really nice ready-to-go lunchboxes for perfect picnic in Rotterdam.

Karakter

Restaurant Karakter uses fresh and biological ingredients daily and they also make special picnic boxes with meat, vegetarian or vegan food. The Karakter Picnic Box consists of BLT sandwiches, carrot and beetroot wraps with tasty fillings, avocado sandwiches, fried cheeseballs, a salad, some fresh fruits, pastechi with chicken and/or vegetables and some sweet bites. The box comes with either wine or local apple juice. Me and a friend tried the vegetarian box and it tasted really good. We especially liked the wraps, the cheeseballs and the BLT sandwiches with vegan bacon. The Karakter Picnic Box costs €37,50 for two persons and you can order it one day in advance. www.restaurantkarakter.com

Picnic in Rotterdam
Picnic in Rotterdam by Karakter

Spirit

At Spirit they have loads of food options. Instead of a menu they have a big buffet with 50 different dishes. Everything is vegetarian and seasonal. You can easily mix & match the variety of foods for lunch or dinner. How about some grilled green asparagus, chickpea salad, risotto balls or a seaweed salad? You can make a full and varied take-away box which will cost you €2,50 per 100 grams. You can choose as many ingredients as you want, you will pay for the weight later. www.spiritrestaurants.nl

Lot en Daan

If you are looking for an all-day breakfast and lunch place, then go to Lot & Daan for guilty pleasures. You can order the Urban Picknick box to-go. The box is filled with fresh juice, fruit, olives, a fresh salad, bread with dips and a surprise piece of pie. If you pick it up at the restaurant you will be rewarded with two free Kaapse Brouwers beers or a small bottle of cava. Or you can use Thuisbezorgd. The box is for 2 persons and costs €18. Lotdaan.nl/picknick

picnic Rotterdam
Picnic by Lot & Daan

Little V

Little V is a Vietnamese restaurant and a popular spot in Rotterdam. They serve many Vietnamese dishes like Banh Mi baguettes, Pho soup and Banh Xeo pancakes. They also have a Street Style Lunchbox on their menu which contains 4 delicious dishes. The lunchbox costs €13,50 and it’s a surprise what’s in the box!

Iyumi

Fancy a Japanese picnic? Iyumi serves many Japanese dishes and their whole menu is available for take-away. Besides sushi boxes, you can get traditional bentoboxes (Japanese lunchboxes) with a variety of fish or meat together with a salad, fried snacks, fruit, rice and warm vegetables. Perfect for a picnic. The prices for the bentoboxes vary from €10,50 to €15,95 for one person. The larger sushiboxes vary from €10,25 to €33,50.

Are you looking for the perfect picnic spot in Rotterdam?

  • The Vroesenpark
  • Het Dakpark
  • De Kralingse Plas
  • The Park at the Euromast are all great places to get together for a picnic gathering.

Find out which places in Amsterdam offer a traditional picnic basket!

Enjoy!

Love,

Merel

* Merel is one of our guest editors in Rotterdam. She describes herself as a daydreaming student who loves to travel. She just came back from a 5-month backpacking trip trough Asia and can’t wait to see more of the world. Check her out on Instagram: @merel_d94.

5 hotspots in Curacao you need to visit

12 days of sun, food and relaxing before my baby is due. I can recommend that to anyone! Curacao isn’t new for me. I actually visit the island every year to see my friends and family. So you could say I’m quite familiar with this small Caribbean island. Every time I’m there I love to check out new places to spend the day or go for a bite. And that’s exactly what I did this time! These are my 5 favourite hotspots in Curacao!

Madero Ocean Club

People who travel to Curacao for quite some years now probably know Mambo Beach. Well, say goodbye to Mambo en welcome Madero Ocean Club. This stylish beach club is part of the renewed Beach Boulevard and very popular among tourists. If we’re talking about hotspots in Curacao, this is it! I love coming here on Sunday afternoon when the DJ is playing my favorite lounge tunes. www.maderooceanclub.com

madero-ocean-club-1

8 The Experience

This place is my number one must-visit when I’m in Curacao ad I recommend it to anyone who is planning on going. 8 The Experience is an exclusive Spa, which opened in early 2015. It’s located on the west side of the island on a cliff overlooking the ocean. Talking about dramatic views! I love to take a massage in the morning and literally spend all day on their comfortable beds next to the meditation pool. Refreshing cocktail anyone? www.8curacao.com

Spa hotspots in Curacao

Karakter

If you take the path down to the beach from 8 The Experience you will arrive at beach club Karakter. If you’ve have ever visited Curacao you know this island has a lot of beach clubs from all different kinds, but Karakter is definitely one of my favorite. Not necessarily to swim but I love that it’s located in a quiet bay. The beach club really has a relaxed vibe and the lunch menu is worth the car ride! www.karaktercuracao.com

karakter hotspots in Curacao

Mosa

My friend took me to this new restaurant and I’m so thankful that she did! Mosa can best be described as intimate, personal and delicious. Mosa is a small shared dining restaurant with an introduction to Bistronomy (bistro + gastronomy). Try the red beet salad with mango and feta cheese or the octopus with chorizo and black olives aioli. Definitely one of the new hotspots in Curacao! Facebook

BijBlauw

Romantic dinner for two? Go to BijBlauw in Willemstad. This restaurant is part of a boutique hotel and a favorite among locals and tourists because of the ambiance and service. Enjoy your dinner on the outside terrace listening to the sound of the ocean hitting the rocks. BijBlauw is actually located in a street with the beautiful colorful houses the island is known for. Make sure you have the time, before or after dinner, to takes some pictures. Believe me, this whole street is Instagram worthy 😉 www.bijblauw.com

bijblauw hotspots in Curacao

Love,

Gala

*Gala is one of our guest bloggers from from the Netherlands who lives on the island Curacao. She knows everything about beachwear and shares her best finds and summer essentials for Wander-Lust this season. You can follow Gala on Instagram for bikini inspiration!

Camp on Pampus Island island!

Who wants to spend the night on a desert island can do it right here in the Netherlands. For the remainder of August, everyone can camp on the historic Pampus island near Amsterdam.

Campspace, known for their rather special camping spots around Europe, previously set up tents in the Olympic Stadium and hanging off De Euromast in Rotterdam. This year, the Dutch camping startup lands on Pampus Island, once used as a defence island for a war that never came.

Everyone flies to Thailand, Bali or another location. We show that you can also have a holiday in your own country on an uninhabited island

Close to home but still far away

While you may be used to the busy streets of Amsterdam, you can now enjoy the tranquility and a beautiful starry sky just a stone’s throw away. In July and August there are 31 exclusive nights where you can book a fully catered tent with dinner and breakfast on Pampus island. In addition, there are 4 nights where you can bring your own tent.

Pampus
Our tent, with the city of Amsterdam across the water

Together with five friends the island for yourself

We got curious and decided to stay the night at the fort island. The only way to get there is by boat which departs from Muiden. You can park your car about a 10 min walk from the dock. The boat ride only takes about 15 minutes. Most people come to Pampus Island to have lunch at the restaurant that opens until 6pm. On some occasions, they host special dinners with pop-up restaurant Zomerlicht. 

Self Sufficient

The island contains a toiletblock but has no showers, yet. By booking your stay, you contribute to the funding of a new toiletblock and perhaps some showers next year! Pampus is well on its way to become fully self efficient. Right now, clean water is being collected from the mainland by the fort guard who is on sight most of the day and night. He, and maximum 3 other campers will be the on the island. We were lucky, because only one other tent was occupied so it felt like having the island to ourselves.

Cook your own dinner

On the contrary, guest can cook their own breakfast and dinner with the food box provided in the small kitchen tent. You’ll find a recipe, fresh ingredients and snacks here. After dinner you can see the sun set behind the skyline of Amsterdam. A magical sight. And because Pampus is at a reasonable far distance to the mainland, you are able to see a full on starry sky.

Food at Pampus Island
Island cooked dinner ala Wander-Lust

Pampus eiland keuken
The small tent kitchen, available for campers on pampus island

With our sharing platform we want to show that an adventure can also take place very close to home.

Pampus nights can be booked now

If you want to save your camping spot on Pampus Island, you can book it until the end of August, so don’t wait too long. The price for an overnight stay varies between €39.50,- and €379,- Everyone who books a camping night on the island contributes to the crowdfunding to make the historic fortress island self-sufficient.

Happy camping!

Wander-Lust

 

 

 

 

 

 

6 x Picnic in Amsterdam

Amsterdam has many parks and people love to chill, play and eat in them during the summer months. You can go the your local supermarket and get in plastic covered food that isn’t always of the best quality, or you can enjoy a traditional picnic! We’ve selected our favourites!

Picnic Company

If you want plenty of choice, you should order your picnic basket here. You can choose from Tapas, I love Amsterdam, High Tea, Mediterranean or Dutch snacks. On the side you can order cava, beer, wine or rosé. They serve the food in big picnic baskets and bring it to you. They also deliver for large groups so its perfect for a work related thing! www.picniccompany.nl

Saus West

Located just around the corner of the famous Vondelpark, the owner of Saus West was clever enough to fill up the gap if you don’t have an outside terrace. Most restaurants just hope for some rain and clouds, but during summer they offer filled traditional picnic baskets, including bubbles, for in the Vondelpark! Nice fact: they include a blanket plus trash bag so you can deposit the remains in there and keep the park clean. www.sauswest.nl

Saus west Picnic Amsterdam

Piqniq

This cute little spot serves breakfast and lunch but also offers costumers a picnic box to take away. You can pick from 2 options; The classic box or the luxe box. The boxes include a selection of cheese and meats, fresh fruit, greek salad, a oven baked baguette and soft drinks for €17,- The Luxe Box includes wine/cava, fresh OJ, Tuna salad and a quiche for €27,- per person. www.piqniq.nl

Borrelplank Amsterdam

If you want to enjoy some afterwork drinks with colleagues in the park, you should try the Borrelplank catering. No after work drink is complete without the traditional snacks. That said, the lady behind this concept is creating a more tastier version of what you may have in mind. Fresh dips, fish, crispy vegetables, crunchy bread and homemade samosa’s. You pay €10,- per person and you can order from 6 people. Yes, it’s not cheap, but it will taste damn good! www.borrelplankamsterdam.com

Picnic Amsterdam
Source: Borrelplank Amsterdam

Pizzabakkers

Nothing beats a good take-away pizza right? First of all, they are located next to several parks in Amsterdam, so you are always good. Secondly, they offer stone oven pizza’s which are tasty AF! Bring a bottle of rosé and call your friends. This is going to be a good picnic. www.depizzabakkers.nl

Conscious Café

Located next to the Westerpark is the small café and shop that belongs to Conscious Hotel Westerpark. It was especially designed for those that want to take out and enjoy the sunshine in the park. They sell fresh coffee, bread and sweets and healthy drinks such as coconut water or kombucha. www.consciouscafe.com

Conscious Café Picnic
Source: Conscious Café

Uber Eats

Okok, they are not a real picnic service, but they offer some of the best food delivery options throughout Amsterdam in our opinion. Above all, they have plenty of choice and always near where you are! Just bring your own blanket and cutlery and never forget to leave the park with trash. www.ubereats.com

Happy eating!

Elke

For tasty hotspots in the world, check the articles below!