The Railway Hotel Location: 32 Clifftown Road, Southend-on-Sea SS1 1AJ Price Range: £-££ A trip to the seaside is never complete without eating chips right? Well, The Railway hotel in Southend on Sea held the answer on a sunny Sunday afternoon. The quirky hotel is located on Clifton Road, a short walk…View Post
When reminiscing on past travel destinations, I always picture the smells, sights and tastes. Food can make or break an experience and ever more so since turning vegan. As I have visited many of my favourite cities before I was vegan, I’d love to share with you 4 beautiful European destinations that I would like to return to in order to sample their delicious plant-based cuisine and explore the sights.
Florence is a city full of Art, culture and beauty. I last visited for my 21st birthday and ate my weight in Nutella croissants, Margherita pizza and seafood pasta. Despite seeing my fair share of Botticelli, D’Angelo and a Cindy Sherman exhibition, I want to return to eat my weight in delicious pizza and experience more than just the Arts.
I’d like to eat at:
Universo Vegano for their legendary sandwiches
Crepapelle to try delicious vegan savoury and sweet crepes
I’d like to visit:
The outdoor pool, Piscina Comunale Costoli and Boboli Gardens Sculpture Park
The one and only time I visited Amsterdam was on a college trip whilst studying for my Foundation diploma. It’s safe to say it was full of socialising, going against the grain and doing anything but looking at photographs and paintings. Back then, food was never of importance to me nor did I care much about what I put into my body. Now, as a Vegan, I’d love to return and sample all of the incredible food they offer, cycle along the canal and soak up the true Dutch culture not just what the Dam is known for.
I’d like to eat at:
The Vegan Junk Food Bar to try the Original VJFB burger
Koffie Ende Koeck to try the High Tea with delicious plant-based cakes and warm drinks
I’d like to visit:
The Anne Frank Museum, Flea Market and cruise down the canal
On a cold November whilst at University I took a trip to the French capital for Paris Photo week. Oversaturated by photographs, museums and late night drinking, we left little time for good food and immersing oneself in the Parisian culture. I’d like to return in the warmer months, book a long weekend away and discover the city by foot and all it has to offer.
I’d like to eat at:
Cloud Cakes for coffee, cake and Sunday brunch
Love Juice Bar for an acai bowl and fresh juice
I’d like to visit:
The Eiffel Tower and climb to the top and explore the Catacombs
Italy is without a doubt my favourite European country. It has stolen my heart on multiple occasions and the coast south of Naples being one of my highlights. On the trip I explored Pompeii, drove the Amalfi coast and stayed in Sorrento. The short trip meant that I didn’t get enough time to explore Pompeii in its entirety nor sample enough of the delicious Italian cuisine. On this trip I survived off of Nutella, freshly squeezed orange juice and meaty pizzas. A vegan return is definitely on the cards.
I’d like to eat at:
O Grin to sample the daily changing menu in their zero waste restaurant
Antica Pizzeria Da Michele to see where Julia Roberts dined in the fabulous Eat Pray Love (and eat pizza of course!)
I’d like to visit:
The island of Capri on a day trip and explore Positano
These were four of my European destinations that I’d love to return to as a vegan.
Have you visited any? What was the vegan food like?
Pancakes are the perfect way to start the day and my Protein Pancake recipe is always my go-to. Topped with fresh blueberries, banana and maple syrup, it truly is heaven on a plate! I twin mine with an Oatly latte from our fantastic De Longhi coffee machine and catch up on my favourite Vlogs.
Bosh TV Burrito Samosas
As soon as I saw the recipe posted by Bosh TV, I knew I had to make it. Crispy tortilla parcels with melted Violife, black beans, basmati rice and boiled potatoes; perfect combination. The recipe required a bit of preparation but made enough for 4 portions, great for Sunday leftovers. It was rather delicious however lacked a spicy punch. I’d advise adding more Mexican spices and seasoning the potatoes before adding to the pockets. The samosas are made complete by dipping in chilli and lime guacamole, fresh out of the oven!
Nostalgia hit and before I knew it I was craving mum’s flapjack recipe. We used to make this as kids, eager to lick the spoon and never trusted with the golden syrup tin. We made the recipe vegan by swapping regular butter for a dairy-free spread and adding to brown sugar, oats and lashings of Lyle’s golden syrup. They weren’t as soft and sticky as I once knew them but this may have been due to leaving the oven unattended for a little while. Nevertheless, this sickly sweet and crispy treat when twinned with a cuppa tea was a perfect Sunday afternoon pick me up!
Sausage & Mash Bowl
Sugary flapjack then a bowl of kale, it’s all about balance right? The dark nights make for this delicious bowl of mashed potato, kale and trusty Linda Mccartney Rosemary & Onion sausages. The evening was topped off by watching Louis Theroux’s new documentary and catching up on the latest blog posts!
What did you eat today?
First Ben and Jerrys, now McDonald’s.Veganism is finally getting the mainstream exposure it needs and I couldn’t be happier! But why is there such a backlash in the cruelty-free community?
It’s a difficult topic and one that everyone seems to have an opinion on. Some vegans are all for it and others wish to boycott this new development. You may be thinking, why the hell is McDonald’s releasing a VEGAN burger? I was thinking exactly the same thing chic. Well, clearly there is a demand for it. Whether this is a way for them to cash in on the ever growing ‘vegan movement’ or are working towards becoming a more ethical company, what matters is our voices are being heard.
I recently read a post on Twitter than resonated with me so well. Why are individuals in the Vegan community so against McDonald’s catering to our lifestyle choice when their target audience is so incredibly vast. The chain serves over 60 million customers a day. Regardless of whether they are nipping in for 20 nuggets or a Big Mac, the word ‘vegan’ will then become part of their normal life. More people will ask what it is, some may be curious others may not. Nevertheless, the option will be there for them to try and hey they may love it! But, if they don’t like it, that’s only £2.99 wasted and they can move on.
The fact that there is a growing demand for vegan products will ensure that it becomes normalised. Call it clever marketing, cashing in on a ‘health fad’ or a genuine step towards a cruelty-free society, whatever you believe it to be, embrace the change positively and encourage it to grow.
As of November 21st, we will see if the McVegan trial in Finland was a success and whether the product will be rolled out in chains worldwide. Fingers crossed for the future of mainstream veganism.
Would you try the McVegan burger?
Copenhagen may be one of the most expensive cities in Europe, but it doesn’t mean there aren’t cheap or free sights to see to make your stay worthwhile. Here I share with you the top things to see and do in Copenhagen when sticking to a budget.
When one thinks of Copenhagen, images of brightly coloured houses and canals may spring to mind. The world famous Nyhavn, once an old port, is a place for indulgence, relaxation and exploring. It offers traditional restaurants, boat tours and a wonderful quayside to perch upon with an ice cold beer in hand. It is perfect for a leisurely stroll to see the brightly coloured facades and get caught up in the hustle and bustle of tourism.
Outdoor Art Exhibitions
On a leisurely stroll through Nyhavn, keep an eye out for an outdoor exhibition at the Kunsthal Charlottenborg exhibition hall. On display was Ai Weiwei’s ‘Soleil Levant’ installation that documents 3,500 life jackets that belonged to individuals who were part of Europe’s refugee crisis. Incredibly moving, Ai Weiwei draws light upon the humanitarian crisis that we are faced with today.
Further along Copenhagen’s harbour lies Paper Island. Next to the outdoor food market is the Copenhagen Contemporary gallery which was exhibiting Yoko Ono’s ‘Wish Tree’ exhibition. You can contribute by adding your wish to one of the tags and placing in a branch. It is fascinating to see what other people from all over the world are wishing for and how we are all connected.
To my surprise, Copenhagen’s botanical garden was free of charge. You are guided through many exquisite greenhouses, some humid some cool, showcasing a wide range of plants from across the globe. The favourite greenhouse hosted a spiral staircase taking you above the plants and into the dome, making you feel superior to what is below you. Make sure you wear minimal layers before entering as you will work up a sweat in the humidity!
In the district of Nørrebro lies Superkilen Park. This outdoor space is well worth a visit and is a 15 minute bike ride outside of the city centre. You will be transported back to your childhood in this playful park with brightly coloured walls, quirky swings and street food stalls. I couldn’t resist having a go on the swings and rocking chairs then running through the black and white linear space with a smile!
Browse The Danish Homeware
If only I had the money to purchase all of the incredible Danish furniture and home decor we saw! Copenhagen will leave you speechless at the minimalist design, simplistic decor and array of beautiful plants that shops have to offer on every other street. You could spend hours in every other homeware store, browsing the products and selecting which items you’d love the most. Window shopping gave me the inspiration to seek cheaper alternatives at home and create the minimalist home I desire.
Hire A Bike
Experience Copenhagen like a true Dane and hire a bike! We chose to use Bycycklen, a high tech, GPS navigated bicycle which is the equivalent of London’s Boris Bikes. They are located all over the city and the GPS system will not only take you to your destination but will show you were to park your bike safely. For around 30DKK an hour it is a great way to get around the city once or twice throughout your stay. Be aware, a deposit of around £25.00 is taken when your account is set up and returned 2-3 days later.
Freetown Christiana is a cultural hippie-commune made popular by tourists. This colourful and vibrant area is known for it’s eco-friendly cafes, live music and hash selling Pusher Street. Strict rules are outlined at the entrance of the freetown in which it states running, photography and selling hard drugs are prohibited. Tourists may visit for a cheeky spliff or just to experience the free spirited lifestyle that is embodied in the settlement. Pusher Street was rather unsettling upon visiting and soon forced me to put my camera away and enjoy the casual stroll.
Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid
Whether you are a huge fan of Christian Andersen or not, everyone should visit the Little Mermaid statue for the experience. I made the long walk along the harbour to see what all of the fuss was about. Some tourists were fighting over the best spot to take their picture whilst others waited patiently inline to strike an awkward pose. The backdrop is not the most picturesque nor is the statue itself but it was fascinating to see how so many flock to see this naked woman on a rock.
The Round Tower
For views over the Danish capital, head to the Rundetaarn. Walk up the windy cobbled slope to the viewing platform and admire the views on the way. At the top you will see across rooftops and beyond. Don’t forget to look out for the Oresund bridge connecting Denmark and Sweden. Finish your trip with a peak at the observatory used by amateur astronomers before your 2,685 metre descent.
Tivoli Gardens By Night
Despite costing a whopping 120DKK (£13-£14) for entry alone, visiting Tivoli Gardens is worth the investment. At night the park is lit up and beautiful. Walk underneath the lanterns, through the themed districts and under the multitude of rides. The rides themselves cost up to 100DKK for a go which is extremely pricy! We chose to explore in awe and then settled in a deck chair with a beer to watch the season’s firework finale which were spectacular!
These were my top things to see and do in Copenhagen on a budget. Have you visited?
See my other posts on Copenhagen here