Summer is just around the corner and along with it you can expect the annual itch to get away for a week or two. Maybe you want an exotic, new experience in the prairies or maybe you’re the sort that wants to head somewhere that’s safe and tested.
Instead of running a Google Search on “Summer Travel Destinations”, hoping for the best and getting generic suggestions, you can skim through the list of travel blogs that we’ve put together for more personalised ideas. From South Africa to India, these blogs have got a long list of countries covered. Even better, they’re run by Leeds locals who’ve tried and tested hundreds of locations around the world between them so that you and your loved ones don’t have to drudge through a bad trip.
It doesn’t matter if mortgage and credit card bills are creeping up on you and you have to pinch pennies or if you’re just plain unsure about where to go this year – these blogs have suggestions for every single one of you in Leeds, from the budget traveller to the nature-lover.
Check them out before you plan your itinerary this year so that you can get exactly what you want out of the precious weeks of your summer vacation. We also asked these bloggers about any personal travel health horror stories that they might have – that is, an instance that they fell ill during a holiday and had quite a time of it!
If you’re a visual person and would like an idea of what you’d see in the place that you’ll be heading to, Bee’s award-winning blog, QueenBeady, is the right pick for you. Her blog, which supplements its written content with stunning pictures of landscapes and tempting close-ups of culinary dishes, not only features travel destinations across the globe – it also regularly features charming towns and cities in the UK itself that you otherwise might not have considered.
What’s great about Bee and what some of you will particularly appreciate is that she plans her trips in a way that there is just the right mix of adventure and relaxation. This fine balance is pretty hard to achieve, as some of you may have found out, but Bee’s experiences will give you a better idea of how to plan your itinerary for your next trip in a way that you have thrilling experiences and still come home feeling relaxed.
“I once travelled to the Dominican Republic and I was sick and got the flu for the whole week which meant we couldn’t do any exploring the whole time we were there. It felt, at times, such a wasted journey! “
Arguably one of the most popular bloggers on this list and Leeds’ darling blogger, Lucy Loves, burst into the travel blog scene in late 2014 and rose to popularity in a flash thanks to her attention to detail. From vivid descriptions of landmarks to stunning pictures of local food, her blog has it all. The vivacious and stylish Lucy has seen her fair share of the world (she visited 12 countries in 12 months in 2018) and regularly shares tips such as chic places to stay and beautiful beaches to visit.
And the best part – she’s brutally honest, which is rare to come across in bloggers these days. If she wasn’t a fan of a country or city, she’ll lay it out for you. Lucy’s also big on fashion and beauty, and when she isn’t writing about traveling, she’s giving you valuable style and skincare tips.
We’ve all been there – having barely enough in the bank to plan a holiday but feeling the itch to get away anyway. Well, Suzy, who started Budget Travel Bugs, understands your dilemma because she’s been through it herself. In fact, Suzy started her blog, a veritable budget travel Bible, precisely because she recalled her experience of travelling as a university student and then realised that as a working adult, she had an even tighter budget.
From comparing hotel and Airbnb prices to explaining how to make the most of a trip to Prague on a budget, Suzy’s blog effectively covers all aspects of travelling when you’re tight on cash. For those of you in Leeds who’re looking to go easy on your wallets but still have a fulfilling Spring Break, Budget Travel Bugs is the blog for you.
Helerina Blogs is run by travel enthusiast, Helen, who travels to various parts of Europe and the UK with her daughter. Helen isn’t necessarily a jet-setter and her blog also features her other passions in life, namely food and music, but she’s seen her fair share of Europe and her experiences are a must-read for those looking to travel with their kids or those planning family-friendly holidays. She even has a feature on how to keep a teenager occupied on a holiday!
While many travel bloggers skip over minute details and tend to show us the larger, more glamorous picture, Helen has an eye for detail and makes sure to tell us about the things that we really need to know to plan a holiday – like the fastest way to get around a city and whether a certain hotel is in a good location in a town.
Leeds Uni Bound is a little different from the rest of the blogs featured on this list in that it’s a blog catered to students who come from abroad to study in the University of Leeds and written by these very students. What’s special about it though is that we get to experience the UK and Europe through fresh sets of eyes – when these international students, who are often in Leeds for summer school, take a bus or a plane to Cardiff or Paris, they encourage us to view these places in a new light altogether.
While destinations in the UK may seem mundane to us, these blog entries remind us that Cornwall is unparalleled in its natural beauty and that Edinburgh’s charm has never waned – they re-create the magic in these local destinations and make them possible holiday spots for us. Even Leeds itself is re-discovered in these posts, for those of you who don’t have the time to take a train or plane out of town.
6. Sophie Cliff
The elegant and simple Sophie Cliff has been up and running since 2014 and has charmed its reader-base with its good vibes and earnest posts, which range from fashion features to travel entries. Sophie, who vows to live the best version of her life and indulge in a bit of hedonism whenever she can, is a perfect person to follow online if you’re looking to plan the best holiday you’ve ever had (and perhaps will have).
Not only can you derive inspiration from Sophie’s bucket list, you can also sift through her blog entries which are conveniently categorised by country – Sophie has been to a long list of places and her tips on travelling and thoughts on her experiences are right there for you to look at while you’re planning your own holiday. If you want to learn how to love life through travel, this is the blog for you.
Beverley, who is the brainchild of the lauded, Leeds-based Pack Your Passport, is both a social media manager and a writer by profession so it comes as no surprise that her travel blog is home to the most well-curated content featured in any of the blogs on this list. Her blog, which features the A to Zs of travel, was recognised as the best travel blog for two consecutive years from 2016 to 2017 in the Bloggers Blog Awards.
Professional and informative, each one of the posts that Beverley has carefully put together, tells readers where exactly they should go and what exactly they should do in these places to add value to their holiday and experience the country or city of their choice to the fullest. Be it brunch spots in Amsterdam or street art in Berlin, this is the perfect one-stop blog for everything travel-related. In between planning your itinerary, you can also read through her insightful takes on life, love and everything in between.
Jess Gibson’s luxury travel blog hits all the right spots, which is perhaps why it has been graced with numerous accolades since it was launched in 2013. The Travelista is the perfect blend of professionalism and quirkiness and Jess keeps readers engaged by alternating between useful and informative content and engaging anecdotes of her travels. The new mum exemplifies the jet setter lifestyle and she’s been to so many spots around the world that she classifies her ample content by continent!
Although the blog is focused on luxury travel, it gives readers the best of both worlds – there are the beautiful pictures that are characteristic of luxury travel but there are also entries which give us tips on how to get the best and most value-for-money travel deals online. It’s also a plus that Jess is a seasoned traveller and can give you the information you need to make a decision on where to go and when to go.
Rhianna Olivia’s charming blog reads like she’s catching up with a dear old friend or trading anecdotes with a favourite aunt. All of her entries, which are on topics such as beauty, fashion and travel, are warm and a pleasure to read and it’s no wonder that she has a loyal reader base which laps up every single one of them. Her travel entries, paired with gorgeous pictures of her globe-trotting adventures, are a go-to for those who want to do some light reading or fun research before they decide on their holiday destination or itinerary.
The 24-year-old also spruces up the idea of travel by including posts such as one that tells you how to be a tourist in your own city – how’s that for an idea for Spring Break? Her photo-blogging in particular is elegant and understated and she manages to capture the essence of an entire city in just a handful of gorgeous pictures.
10. Elisha Blogs
Although Elisha Blogs has a comparatively smaller travel section than most of the blogs featured on this list, it’s a gem for those who are looking to get away to places very unlike small town Leeds. Toronto and the Bahamas are just some of the places that self-professed wine connoisseur, Elisha, has been to. Her blog entries are unique in that they focus on the day-to-day experiences of exploring a brand new place and go on to let us know which part of the experience gave her the most joy and value.
She’s also an expert on planning value-for-money trips and making the most of short trips – her posts, 48 hours in Prague and 72 hours in Split, Croatia, are perfect reads for those who are in a time crunch and can only afford to plan a short holiday. The Leeds-based blogger also suffers from an allergy to nuts and thus makes sure to include tips and details on how to travel safely with allergies in her posts, which may be very helpful for those who have similar ailments.
“When I went to Thailand a few years ago, I came down with the worst sickness bug I’ve ever experienced. Whether it was food poisoning or was an infection from the water, I don’t know. But it was a horrendous sickness bug that had me out of action for two days. The only problem was that I was far too sick to leave my bed, but I needed water desperately to keep hydrated. But, of course, in Thailand, you can’t drink the water.
Goodness knows how I didn’t get into serious trouble with dehydration, but I was finally able to get someone to bring me a bottle of water to keep myself moderately hydrated on day 2. My lesson from this incident was, 1) always keep a bottle of water on you, and 2) don’t order salads when in a country with dodgy tap water. I am pretty sure that it was washed salad leaves that gave me the worst tummy bug of my life – I definitely never thought a salad would be so bad for me!”
So there it is – a comprehensive list of the travel blogs that you might want to follow and get tips from when you’re planning for your holiday this summer.
Read up about safeguarding yourself from diseases while travelling and the types of vaccinations you might want to consider. Don’t forget to fix an appointment with Clari Health once you’ve planned your travel itinerary so that you can keep yourself and your loved ones safe from diseases!