Art and beauty in downtown Montreal

To say Montreal was not on its best behaviour when I arrived is an understatement. A freak monsoon and thick layer of cloud blighted the city, which is usually reliably sunny throughout June. It was not the warm, summery welcome I had hoped for, but thus is the nature of travel — the weather doesn’t always behave just because you are on your holidays. The city may not have put all its beauty on show, but I was determined to find some hidden in between the skyscrapers. Fortunately, I was in luck. An ingenious town-planning scheme means that one percent…

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Cirque du Soleil’s Kurios in the Montreal big top

Last night I had the privilege of going to see Cirque du Soleil’s brand new show in the company’s hometown of Montreal. I’ve seen a couple of Cirque du Soleil shows before as they’ve toured their way through the UK, so I knew to expect a surreal and mesmerising spectacle. This new show is called Kurios, Cabinet des Curiosites and it was a gorgeous steampunk saga with a cast of oddball characters that could have come straight out of a Victorian fairground. I am a huge fan of the steampunk aesthetic in general, so I was predisposed to enjoy the…

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The ideal in-flight ensemble

Amelia Earhart was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic. She was also a very stylish lady — however, when it came to dressing for flying, she always opted for very practical garb. Checking out what people are wearing is pretty much my favourite sport at the airport — even ahead of raiding duty free and enjoying a celebratory holiday beverage — mainly because I love guessing where people have come from or where they are going to. Sometimes though I am astounding by what people choose to wear to fly. I just can’t get my head…

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The Bells of Hemscott: Glamping in Northumberland

There are a handful of places in the UK that make me feel nostalgic and that I could revisit time and time again. These are they; the places that are woven deep within my ongoing travel story: Cartmel and Coniston in the Lake District; the New Forest; Abersoch and Portmeirion in Wales and the Northumberland Coastline. I returned to the latter this weekend — to Druridge Bay — after Alison from the Bells of Hemscott saw me raving about it on Twitter. I’ve written about this part of the world before and praised its beaches to high heaven, but I’m always…

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Charity challenge, Cosmo blog awards and adventures ahoy!

Winter was long, spring is full of hope and this summer will be terrific. I have plans. I have a brand new passport with no stamps, I have a lot to prepare for and a lot to be excited about. Bells of Hemscott First up, this weekend I will be heading up to my favourite beach in the country, Druridge Bay in Northumberland to stay in a bell tent with some of my best friends. The Bells of Hemscott kindly invited me to experience their new campsite after seeing me get excited about Druridge Bay on Twitter. There will be…

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