University not for you? Here’s why you should take a gap year instead..

University not for you? Here’s why you should take a gap year instead..

In light of the recent A Level results, there are likely thousands of teenagers currently in the UK at a loose end and perhaps you are one of them. You haven’t yet chosen a career path that warrants higher education and maybe you are scrambling through the competition to bag that summer job?

This is the not the time to be pulling your hair out, worrying about your future. This is the time to discover who you are and exactly what you want from this merry-go-round we call life. This is the absolute perfect timing to throw your essentials into a backpack and head of into the unknown as the glorious ‘backpacker’.

The world is a huge place and travel will teach you so much about life. Everyday will bring you opportunities to immerse yourself in a new culture and try food so exquisite you won’t miss your Sunday roast. It will bring people into your life who will mean so much to you and may never leave. Travel will teach you about change. It will teach you confidence and to love yourself and how to treat others with respect. Travel will teach you how to communicate with others, even when you do not speak the same language. It will teach you how to survive without your family and friends to lean on and most importantly, it will show you who you really are.

So when you return, your friends may be a year into their studies, but who will have the better education??

Is it scary? Yes. Is it hard? Yes. Is it possible? Absolutely.

There are companies on the market that specialise in tailoring your year out to explore the world and find you the best airfares to visit all the places you can fit on your list and can hold your hand right up until the day when you spread your wings and fly (well… board the plane!)

So what are you waiting for? The world is waiting for you.

*Warning!! Travel can be highly addictive and you may get the ‘travel bug’.*



Strangers and People are the Highlight of Travel

Strangers and People are the Highlight of Travel

Picture this – a world without people in it. Travelling to other countries without anybody to see or talk to. Sure there would still be art and beautiful beaches. But if there were either no people there, or everybody was the same, travel would simply be dull.

Culture or language would not exist without people. Some of my favourite experiences while travelling have only been brought to life because of the people that surrounded me, even if they were just…. strangers.

I love photographing strangers while I’m travelling. If I see people talking in a photograph, I imagine what they are talking about, or where they are walking to. Watching people celebrate festivals or even funerals in a different way than I have only known in my own, “normal” life, is magnificent.

Here are my favourite photographs of strangers that I have taken during my travels over the world.


I feel that photographing strangers is the best way to reflect on your travels and really discover the culture of the places you visit. You can learn so much from people you don’t know.

Vietnamese Massage

Vietnamese Massage

I am a huge fan of massage. Here in England I treat myself to a massage once a month as my job involves heavy lifting. However, in my opinion, nothing compares to Asian massage.

On a trip to Vietnam a couple of months ago, I had the pleasure of experiencing authentic Vietnamese massage.

They use a combination of strong massage, strokes and they use small cups to “pop” your muscles which is great for releasing tension and improving circulation.

I felt higher than I have ever felt from a massage after experiencing Vietnamese. I would recommend paying more and visiting a proper spa in Vietnam. You can get treatments for around 3 dollars which is cheap and cheerful. But, to experience a treatment that will improve positivity and feel amazing during and after, expect to pay over 10 dollars. Trust me, it’s worth it. If you are in Hanoi, I recommend SF Spa which is rated highest on Tripadviser. You need to book in advance.

I had a treatment in Hanoi on my last day and tipped my therapist 5 dollars. When she didn’t know I could see her, she kissed the money and put it in her purse. This made me pretty emotional.

For me, massage is a huge part of travel. Especially if travelling solo, massage gives you human interaction and touch, which is very important. It also helps me relax and connect with the culture as most massage therapies in Asia date back thousands of years.