Turkish food you say? Delightful!

An essential part of travelling is food,  I love to eat and wherever I go I make it a point to try a variety of traditional plates. While in Turkey I tried some pretty delicious dishes.

I have just a few pictures of some of the food I tried, because I was usually too hungry and excited to eat to even think about getting my camera out and snapping photos.

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The Turkish Riviera; Antalya

Antalya is a beautiful Mediterranean beach city and one of the most visited places in Turkey . This  city can compete with any other famous resort town in Europe, as it offers amazing beaches and landscapes, good nightlife and shopping.

Although my stay was just for one night and one day, it was one of my favourite destinations during my Turkey trip and I managed to visit most of the sights and even found time to chill at the beach.

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Travel tips: Get a ride with BlaBla car

A great way to save some money while travelling in Europe is using the website “BlaBla car” which helps connect drivers with empty seats on their cars, with people looking for rides.

The company was founded in France and is now present in 12 countries in Europe including Spain, France, Germany and the UK.

The way it works is very simple. In order to offer a ride or take one, you must create a profile on the website. On your profile you can indicate wether you smoke, travel with animals and most importantly how chit chatty you are willing to get during the trip, hence the name BlaBla car.

If you are offering a ride, details of what type of car you own and the price for each seat must be provided . The purpose of BlaBla car drivers is not making money , but splitting the cost of a journey amongst the passengers, therefore the price per seat for a specific journey does not vary much from driver to driver.

When searching for a ride, enter your departure and arrival towns as well as the dates and browse through the list of drivers that will be displayed. Contact the one that meets your requirements and set up a meeting time and place to be picked up  in the departure town. Payment is usually done via credit card through the website, but sometimes you are given the option to pay directly to the driver. Before making any bookings , make sure to read the drivers profile, comments and ratings.

To ensure safety, you must provide a telephone number that will be verified via text message as well as an email. Neither of these will be displayed on your public profile.

I have used the website several times, going between towns in France , and from France to Spain and I can definitely  say it’s a smart way to travel. For example from Monpellier ,France , to Barcelona, Spain, you can either take the bus or train which is more expensive and takes longer than getting a ride with BlaBlaCar for 15 to 20 euros!

 

 

Why you should choose Montpellier for your study abroad experience.

I have just returned to Chile , after almost a year in Montpellier, France , I’ve graduated university and I’m ready to face new challenges.

The past year was , as corny as it may sound, the best year of my life. And I’m going to tell you why to choose southern France, specifically Montpellier for your study abroad experience.

(You can check out my first post about Montpellier here: “La vie à Montpellier” )

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1. Great Location and weather:  Montpellier is located in Southern France on the Mediterranean sea, this offers great weather on the summer and a mild winter.

Location wise it’s perfect for travelling around Europe. Barcelona, Marseille and the beautiful Côte d’Azur is just a short car ride away. And direct flights from nearby towns will take you to Morocco, Belgium, England, Holland, Greece, Turkey and more!

2. Entertainment and events all year round:  During the year I enjoyed different events and festivals such as “Les estivales de Montpellier”, the Open Sud Tennis Tournament, the FISE (International Festival of Extreme Sports) and even a concert by my favourite rapper Drake :)! Bottom line is , you will always find something going on in the city that will be of your interest.

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3.Diversity:  Something that I always enjoy when I travel is diversity. In Montpellier you canDSC_0704 find people from all over the place like Morocco, Algeria, Spain, Latin America and other places. The perks of this is that you get to experience other cultures on daily basis by eating their food, or celebrating festivities from different countries.

4. It’s a city that caters to students:With many universities and grand écoles,the majority of the population in Montpellier are students. Which leads to the next point….

5. Parties, bars and clubbing:  Nightlife in Montpellier is fun and crazy. You have endless options when it comes to bars, on Monday’s the place to be for exchange students is the “Australian” bar where you can get a pint of beer for 2.50 euros. As for big clubs, these are located a bit further away but easily accessible by tram or the “amigo bus” , a free bus that will that will take you to some clubs and back to the city centre.

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6. Government  funding: This applies all over France for students even if you are not French. You can apply to get government funding for your rent through “CAF” , depending on how many people you share an apartment with and how much you pay monthly, you can get CAF to pay for up to half of your rent!

7.It’s beautiful: I will never forget the first time I saw “Place de la Comedie”, it was so beautiful I just couldn’t believe that was going to be my home for a year. Even on my last night in Montpellier as I walked around town I was amazed.

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I will never forget the year and amazing friends I had in Montpellier. I recommend a study abroad experience to everyone, get out of your comfort zone and go explore the world 🙂

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Travelling with family

Ever since I was a baby, I have travelled with my family. At first it was just me and my older brother, my mom would travel all the way from Chile to India , holding my brother with one hand and carrying me with the other. We’ve been on relaxing trips to the Caribbean and Italy, to adventurous ones in China and Malasya. It has always been fun but chaotic at the same time, we are no strangers to missing flights, losing bagagge and even getting deported from India.

For my March break this year my family including my grandma and uncle, came to visit me. My older brother was the only one missing though but we were still a big group of 7. Let’s just say travelling with 6 other people ranging from ages 10 to  70 was a bit of a challenge.

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Travel tips: Accomodation with Air Bnb

While travelling, where you choose to stay has a major influence on how you experienceair bnb your trip . If you have a low-budget, hostels is your best option, or even couch surfing, on the up side you will have an opportunity to meet people and hang out with them.  But if you are travelling with a large group , whether it’s friends or family , a good option is looking for a place to stay with Air Bnb

Air BnB is present in over 34 thousand cities in 190 countries. The cool thing about it is that you have an extensive catalogue to browse through and find the perfect place for you to stay. From cottages, to lofts and even castles, there are endless possibilities to fit your needs.

The site works by renting out lodging offered by a host, it can either be a house, an apartment or a room.  The site is very safe, and you can read all about the host and the property before making any bookings.  All payments are done through the website and are processed 24 hours after you check in.

I used the site to book an apartment in Madrid when I travelled with my family this past March break. I contacted the host through the site before booking, asked her all the questions I had and booked 3 nights. She was there waiting for us when we arrived to hand over the keys and that was it. It worked out perfectly as we had a kitchen to cook and comfortable beds for all of us.