A Sojourner’s Journal: Last Days in Russia

It has been so much fun exploring Russia with Cosmos .

August 6, 2017

Went to an Oceanarium today. Frogs and fishes and sharks, oh my!

August 7, 2017

Went to this huge indoor family climbing area/jungle gym. Things went pretty great till they stopped being great and everything was pain. So I decided to give archery a try. I generally like archery but my hands were still raw from the ropes and this just made it worse.

August 8, 2017

Amusement park today. THIS IS THE BEST THING EVER!!!

Sandwiches were nice. Meat chips were just meh.

August 9, 2017

Went to an aqua park today. Water slides are sweet but a literal pain.

This place has a LOT of different saunas. Tried out the infrared one. Isn’t bad.

August 10, 2017

Back to Africa today and end of travel journal.

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A Sojourner’s Journal; The Destination – Russia

Cosmos continues with her Russian story;

July 12, 2017 – St. Petersburg

So, I got in last night and proceeded to:
Eat
Shower
Sleep

First day here: Well first thing is we took the subway into town. One thing I noticed about the city centre is that the entire place follows a pastel colour pattern; ivory, peach, pale green, you name it.

Then we went to the Kazanskiy Sobor which is this huge old cathedral/museum. And I mean huge.
After that we took a tour bus around the city, it was pretty fun, the tour guide said that if you spent 1 minute looking at each painting in the Winter Palace/Hermitage Museum it would take you about 60 years to go through all of them.

July 14, 2017
I went to the Hermitage today! But first I had to wait in line for a very long time in the blithering cold but I still got in and it was worth the wait.

Cool fact: kids under 18 and students (if you have proof) are allowed in for free. Still have to pay if you want to go on a tour though.

I know I wrote a piece once where I stated that I would never get tired of being surrounded by luxury; well that isn’t true anymore. I mean really? The Malachite Room alone…

There were also special exhibits on the top floor from other countries. Although my favourite parts, were the really old pieces and by old, I mean stone age and iron age. Primarily the weapons.

July 15, 2017
Turns out that here you have to pay for plastic bags when you shop, which is a great idea. I mean, if you pay for it then you’re going to keep and reuse it instead of just tossing it.

Went to an ice-ring today and proceeded to epically fail and nearly break my arm on the wall. I was later informed that I should have rented skates for boys which are much easier to balance on for first time users. When I told NJ about my arm, she laughed at my pain. I need new friends.

I found a shop that has knifes. And crossbows. I wanted one. My wallet said no.

A Sojourner’s Journal: The Journey to Russia

Our favourite writer / contributor Cosmos visited Russia last year and has decided to share her experience with us.

Here we go;

 

July 8, 2017 – Tema, Ghana

1:15pm: It’s D-day people!!!

Accra

So apparently, I need a transit visa to go through Paris, who knew? But was telling someone that they CANNOT travel really the way to go about this?

 

July 9, 2017 – somewhere in Ghana

3:29pm: Well Air France didn’t pan out but at least Turkish Airlines has got my back.

 

July 10, 2017 – Kotoka International Airport, Ghana

YES! Finally! I finally checked in. Now to kill 3 hours till take off…

 

July 11, 2017 – Istanbul, Turkey

Turkish airlines is pretty awesome. You know I never seem to be able to sleep on flights but watching the sunrise over the Mediterranean was definitely worth it. The sea looked like a grey desert and when the plane tilled it really felt as if the wing would skim the sand.

 

Cosmos out

A Sojourner Journal: Cosmos Visits Russia

Our favourite writer / contributor Cosmos visited Russia last year and decided to write down her day to day activity to share with us all.

For the rest of the month, we will be sharing with you Cosmos’s Russian story.

These stories will be divided into parts – showcasing her day to day activity in Russia, her thoughts, her views and experiences.

We hope you enjoy reading as much as she enjoyed writing.

What To Do On Your Baecation

You and bae are all set up and excited for your baecation. You have agreed on your budget and your travel plan, know your destination, worked on your packing list and you are now wondering what to do on your trip? You need to know beforehand the activities you both want to undertake and also leave room for spontaneous activities but having an itinerary is a must.

See below some activities we have picked out for you and your significant other.

Be adventurous

Baecation is a time to tryout new things and to have adventures with bae. Enjoy that! Be prepared to look silly trying new things. Laugh about it and allow yourself to truly enjoy the experience. Try bungee jumping, skydiving, ziplining, paragliding, and anything your destination has to provide.

Get wonderfully lost

You do not have to have it all together on your trip. Make things flexible and be spontaneous. Get lost in the city, on an island, anything. Lose the map and explore the city.

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Hit the beach

If you chose a destination with a beach, then by all means put on your swimsuits and hit the beach. Tryout all the activities the beach has to offer.

Go hiking/ camping

If you chose a destination that offers a great place to hike and also camp out, then why not give it a shot. Go on a mountain hike. Camp out in the beach or at the seashore. With bae by your side, you won’t be afraid of any monsters.

Do some yoga in open air

Stretch out, control your breathing and strengthen your body and mind through yoga/ meditation. Try out new poses together. Laugh at each other when you fall and just stay healthy.

Go for an early morning jog or run

Enjoy the sunrise, talk without pressure and stay healthy by going for a run or a jog.

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Dress fancy and go on a date

Take time out and really dress up for a date night. Wear fancy clothes, heels, makeup and take yourselves to fancy restaurant or hit a cool bar.

Try local delicacies

You cannot visit a country without finding out what the locals eat, how they eat it and where to find the best delicacies. Get adventurous and go all the way.

Go shopping

This would not be much fun for boo but girl, this would be your territory. Shop for yourself and boo, get some souvenirs for family and friends.

Go wine tasting

If the country offers this, then by all means you should include it in your itinerary.

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Enjoy some “me” time

Baecations are not always a fairytale. There might be little arguments and disagreements. There might also be that moment when you or bae will need your space at least for a while. Use this opportunity to visit places you wanted to see, go for a meal, explore the beach, shop or do something cool.

Have a relaxing day at the spa

Nothing spells bonding than two people in love indulging in a couple’s massage. This relaxes you while it provides you two time to just enjoy the company of each other with very few words.

Go on strolls and watch the sunset/ sunrise

Nothing says romance than holding hands with your significant other while walking the shows of a turquoise blue sea with sun rising or setting. This is simply picturesque!

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Staycation

When you get tired of all the activities and the outings, you can take a day out and just stay in bed. Indulge in each other, talk about your feelings, plan the future, etc. Just stay indoors and order room service.

Pack some adult games

Pick up some adult games for the days and nights you two decide to stay in.

Go Dancing or take a dance lesson

If you visit a country or city that loves dancing and take dancing seriously, use the opportunity to learn some dance moves and then go dancing to show off your moves.

Take photos

Make sure to capture all your moments together or apart. Share on Instagram with hashtag #baecation, print them out or keep them in your couple album.

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Take the baecation up a notch

If you still have time and can easily explore the country’s neighbouring countries and cities, do it! Travel for so many hours to see the perfect beach, monument, mountains etc. Just get on a bus, a car, or a train and go see it with bae. Time flies by and if this opportunity has presented itself, take it!

PS: You and bae must stay off your phones and enjoy your time together.

Photocredit: Woman Beyond Borders

What To Pack For Your Baecation

Your baecation destination has been decided on and you are now wondering what to pack? First make a packing checklist so you will not leave anything behind. While working on this packing check list, take a look at our list and why we believe the below should be packed for your baecation.

Swimsuits and sunscreen

For the beach, poolside, island hopping or water sports, swimsuits are a must-have for you two. Though it is mad fun lying in the sun, would be a better option to apply some sunscreen before doing so.

Sunglasses

For comfort, protection and to class up your outfit or to spy other guys without bae realising.

Trainers / Sneakers

Wherever you may find yourself, you should find the time to exercise (go for a run, hit the gym or do a bit of stretches). So, pack some trainers and workout outfits.

Comfortable Shoes

We all know beauty is pain but not on your baecation. Pack some really comfortable shoes for those days when you and bae wake up feeling adventurous.

Scented lotions and oils

These would be perfect for massages and just feeling each other out.

Games

A board game, deck of cards or dating games may sound boring but think of all the many ways you can spice things up.

Camera

Capture all the beautiful moments, landscapes to create memories wherever you go. Or you can just use your phone if you feel a camera would be too bulky.

Toiletries

You may never know when they will come in handy. Pack some tissues, hand wipes and sanitizers.

Blankets and snacks

If your baecation is a roadtrip, would be great to bring a blanket for chilly nights on the road and some snacks to munch on.

Gift for bae

Whether the baecation is a special occasion or not, you would want to bring a small gift to say thank you or act as a reminder for the time you two spent on the trip.

Extra packing tips for her

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When it comes to clothing, it would be great to pack simple but versatile basics into one bag that is if it is a weekend getaway. But as your baecation would be longer, you can include various other items. So. the below are must-haves for every woman on a baecation.

You will need;

  • Day outfits for exploring (this could be trousers, shorts, t-shirt or shirts or blouses, flats, sunglasses, shoulder bag or crossbody purse).
  • A date night out (slip or form fitting dress, low heels or wedges, clutch and a jacket) for a flirtatious evening.
  • In addition to your swimsuits, you will need shorts or lacy cover-ups, flats, hat, tote or straw basket.
  • Painting the town red, bar hopping etc., you will need pants with low heels and a classy top (sequins should be amazing with a jacket).
  • Pick the right lingerie for each day / night. See-throughs, lace, anything sexy but not uncomfortable.
  • Simple accessories or you can always go for those that make a statement. Depends on you and your destination.

 

Makeup Kits

It does not really matter where you go, makeup is a must pack for every woman. Just stick to the essentials – waterproof mascara and eyeliner, light foundation, lipstick and gloss, makeup remover and highlighter.

Money

Usually on baecations, your man does most of the paying. He will take care of dinner, activities, transportation, shopping and souvenirs etc. Although you should expect this, it would be really nice of you to treat him to some really cool stuff and for unexpected money situations.

Extra packing tips for him

You may want to pack;

  • Cool shorts or jeans and t-shirts for exploring during the day. Throw in a beach hat.
  • Flats will come in handy when chilling by the poolside or lazing about at the beach.
  • Pack shirts comfortable enough for sightseeing and/ or sharp for the evening.
  • Pack several clean / new underwear. Yes! Something cool, fresh and most importantly clean.
  • Do not forget to pack extra socks and really cool shoes or trainers for date nights or bar hopping.
  • A jacket for when it is chilly or when she is chilly. Will score you some points.

 

NB: These are the essentials for a baecation but do not forget to bring any items that you would normally bring on a trip.

Photocredit: Maryykim

Where To Go On Your Baecation

If the plan for your baecation is to explore new places and cultures, then how about the second largest continent in the world – Africa. Africa is the home of safaris, rich culture and history (earliest civilization), rainforest, various plants and animals, diverse climate, thousands of languages, art and culture, delicious cuisine, dance (azonto, amanda, shoki etc.) and music (afrobeats), diverse religions and beliefs.

If you are already hooked, then here are 15 baecation destinations in Africa.

botswana-romance-under-the-starsBotswana

You must have heard of Prince Harry and Meghan’s romance and how Botswana played a big role in their love story? Why not create your own love story at the most romantic, wild and unspoiled safari / desert of Africa? You can go on a getaway at the Zambezi Queen with its serene and melodious sound of nature, incredible sunsets and starry nights. Or you can stay at their various romantic bush camps where you can view the open air and sleep under the stars.

 

Cape-VerdeCape Verde

With stunning, never-ending, sandy beaches, glorious sunsets and lovely hotels, the islands of Cape Verde are a perfect location for a romantic vacation. If you love the exotic white linen drapes, turquoise blue sea, sun-bleached wood and seashells, then stay at the Spinguera Eco Lodge which is oozing with charm and romance. Or you can head to the mountainside on the rugged island of Santo Antão with its quiet and unique retreat – perfect for lovers of the great outdoors.

 

Egypt_Vacation_New_h1

Egypt

If you and bae are history lovers, the explore the early civilization in Egypt while riding a mesmerizing felucca ride across the river Nile into the sunset, plan a dinner cruise or relieve the ancient charm by riding a horse-drawn carriage in Zamalek. While in Egypt, use the opportunity to also visit Sharm El Sheikh – the resort town between the desert of the Sinai Peninsula and the Red Sea where you get to explore the diverse marine life, go diving and see the Thistlegorm wreck.

 

gambia

Gambia

If your baecation is on a budget, then consider Gambia. There are so many things you can do on a budget while staying at an eco-camp, the beautiful beaches or the floating lodges of Mandina and Makasutu on River Gambia. You and bae will be surrounded by the marvellous beauty of nature – a sight to die for.

 

ghanaGhana

If you are looking to relax and immerse in authentic African culture, then Ghana is an ideal destination as it is the best place to learn more about African history. The people are amazing, the city of Accra is quickly growing and the nightlife on the Oxford street in Osu is a must see. Plus the eateries are also amazing. You can also go to the Eastern / parts of Volta region where there are mountains and the Volta Lake which gives a cool breezy atmosphere. Or the Central, Greater Accra, parts of Volta and Western Region with its various deep blue seas. Or the safari in the North. You can also use the opportunity to visit neighbouring countries like Togo which is right after the Aflao in the Volta region, Cote D’Ivoire to the West and Burkina Faso right after Paga in the North for a weekend getaway.

 

Kenya-Romantic-Safari

Kenya

There are so many things to do in Kenya. You can either go with an itinerary or leave everything to chance. From their safaris; cultural and historical sites; the beautiful city of Nairobi; to the waterworld and exotic beaches, you will have to make a difficult choice when in Kenya.

 

madagascarMadagascar

Madagascar was attached to Africa until some many years ago when it was violently torn and set adrift. This adds some magic to the baecation as it would be beautiful knowing you are on a secluded island – perfect for a romantic or a relaxing time with bae. There are the mountains, forests, coral reefs, beaches and you would not be surrounded by many tourists – a perfect island paradise. So, you and bae get to explore the abundance of wildlife and each other.

 

mauritiusMauritius

Mauritius rightly called the Paradise Island has powdery white sands, turquoise water, ethereal beaches which makes it look like something out of a romance novel.  This makes it a perfect spot for a baecation. From enjoying your sweet private time with bae to exploring the adventures together, things to do in Mauritius and places to visit there, has a ton of both. You can spend lots of time experiencing world famous water sports, trendy bars, restaurants and clubs.

 

PalaisNamaskar47.tifMorocco

The country is not only a top tourist destination for history and culture but also offers a warm climate, starry nights in the Sahara, captivating cities of Marrakech and Fes; calm beaches, great activities and sights which makes it a perfect location to spend with your loved one. Together, you can visit the romantic setting of Cascades d’Ouzoud with its waterfalls and pools; enjoy the luxurious beach resorts with its outdoor pools, fantastic restaurants and accommodation. Go camel trekking in the Sahara; wander the Souks, go on a hot air balloon flights, dine on a rooftop, visit the Atlas Mountains and Majorelle Gardens.

 

namibiaNamibia

For you to enjoy the full Namibian effect, it would be best to go during dry season, which begins late May to November. Just imagine a baecation where bae and you sleep under the sparkling stars, whilst the Naukluft Mountains and the Namib’s red desert dunes or mountains isolate you from the outside world. This I believe would give you the peace and quiet you seek with your loved one in picture perfect scenery.

 

rwanda

Rwanda

Enjoy the sunrise with two cups of some of Africa’s Best Coffee raised in Rwanda while staying in a resort on the studded sandy beaches along Kivu with the scenic Savannah of Akagera National Park right out your balcony. There is the romantic warm all-yearlong weather with the wondrous, fairy-tale Afro-Montane Jungle like Nyungwe Forest, the incomparable Virunga Volcanoes found in Volcanoes National Park along with Mountain Gorillas, Golden Monkeys, Volcano Climbing. You can partake in the cultural dances and music that will strike a spark in your and your bae’s soul.

 

Sao-tome-and-principe-newSao Tome and Principe

The Democratic Republic of Sao Tome and Principe is one of Africa’s thriving island tourist destinations. It is a small island country with a many romantic hotspots. For couples and lovebirds seeking the opportunity to ignite the spark in their relationship this year, then Sao Tome and Principe is the way to go. Rich and unspoilt beaches, stunning volcanic geology and pleasant all-year-round weather are priceless attributes of this romantic island.  Whether you are a history enthusiast or a lover of lush vegetation and exotic birds, this island will not disappoint you.

 

seychellesSeychelles

This Island of Romance is perfect for any type of baecation as it is considered the most romantic in the world. Are you looking at proposing? Are you looking at making memories to cherish forever? Do you want to just relax and chill? Or do you just want to live in the moment? Whatever it is that you are searching, Seychelles has it! From secluded white-sand beaches; calm turquoise waters that provide spectacular snorkeling, surfing, and sailing; and intimate, luxe resorts with treetop villas and elegant, open-air restaurants. Some resorts even provide a beachfront proposal spot. What more can you ask for?

 

south africa

South Africa

Whether you prefer a beach getaway or a luxury safari experience, South Africa has unlimited baecation spots, memorable romantic places to stay and activities for you and your loved one. There are lodges, cottages, resorts, hotels and backpackers from the coast and mountains to forests and the bush, to suit every budget. From breathtaking views to spas to wineries and places that offer some of the most delicious food, South Africa is indeed an ideal place for a long baecation.

 

tanzaniaTanzania

Tanzania hosts the tallest mountain in Africa which has three peaks called Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira. Given the fact that tourism is one of the main contributors of the Tanzanian economy, this country’s tourist attractions are one of a kind and offers whatever you are looking for. Whether it is a private romantic time at the beach, exploring a city’s markets and history; or indulging in absolute luxury and pampering. It is the perfect place to go on a baecation. When you get tired of the mainland, you can visit Zanzibar – a cluster of islands off of Africa’s east coast and home to beautiful white-sand beaches with sapphire waters, a rich history, and even hidden rainforests.

Happy Valentine’s Day Wanderlusts! Go have fun and just live!

Featured Image: Woman Beyond Borders

Other Images: Google