Where: Indonesia: Bali: Bukit: Balangan Beach, Bingin Beach, Padang Padang Beach, Ulu Watu Beach
When: Its warm all year around… But if you want to surf during the of the raining season (Octobert-March) there is often no swell on those beaches (west coast of Bukit). However I was there in October and the swell was big.
Get there: You can get to Bukit easily with a taxi from the airport… If you stay on one of those beaches you can rent a scooter and drive from one to another. However due to the road system the distances are much much further then you think by looking at the map (don’t think “Oh its only the next beach I could walk there” trust me you can’t) and its easy to get a lil lost on your search to the next beach.
Price: Bali is already cheap but those beaches are especially cheap. Food, Drinks and even Accommodation costs very very little. The Prices on surfing depends weather you want to rent just a board or do surf lessons.
Do: Well try surfing… but beware a lot of those beaches aren’t for beginners! Do not attempt the Ulu Watu wave if you’re not good (to get back on the beach you have to avoid rocks, the reef and surf right into a cave). Start with Padang Padang (very easy) and then go on to Balangan and work your way up from there.
My tip: If you want the cheapest accommodation don’t book in advance. Go to one of those beaches and ask the owners of the little wooden cafes and restaurant for a room. It costs almost nothing… But also has almost nothing… you’ll have to live with a mattress and shared toilet and shower.
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Where: Spain: Andalusia: Ronda
When: All year around…. If you like less busy avoid summertime.
Get there: If you don’t have a car you can also reach it by train.
Price: It has very good affortable prices, especially for food and drinks. Accommodation might be cheaper off season.
Do: Enjoy the scenery and go for some hikes in the area. Little rivers, beautiful mountains… its such a nice area. Or be lazy and enjoy the view with some spanish wine. Ernest Hemingway and Orson Welles spend many summers in the village and wrote about its beauty!
My tip: Visit the old bullring (Plaza de toros). Its an impressive sight, even for bullfight opponents. Id doesn’t host any actual bullfights anymore but functions as a museum.
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Where: Norway: Hardangerfjord, Naeroyfjord, Aurlandsfjord
When: If you want to do activities like hiking you should go between mid June and August. I was there end of June and still saw a lot of snow at my hikes up the mountains…
Get there: If you don’t have your own car, there are many possibilities. There are special round trip programs (Norway on a shoestring) etc. that take you to different Fjords with train and busses. Also you can go from place to place by boat.
Price: Doing hikes is for free… but everything else is very very expensive (like everything in Norway)
Do: Camp if you can. In Norway you are allowed to camp in Nature anywhere you want… However unfortunately that does not work if you have a car cause you wont be allowed to park anywhere. But if you feel active you can get around with bikes or even better rent kajaks and drive on the Fjords.
My tip: Pack winter clothes… The local people will walk around in T-shirts and shorts and go for a swim when its cloudy and only 12 degrees… But if you’re not one of them (and you’re not from Canada) you will be very cold all the time… Even in summer…At least I was.
Croatia: Zadar: July 2015
Where: Indonesia: Bali: Seminyak Beach
When: It is hot all year around… if you want many many many people go in season (from December till April). If you like it a little bit quieter (still not very quiet) go October or November…
Price: I have to admit, for Bali it is very very expensive… However for Europeans, Australians, Americans etc. the prices are normal.
Drink: They do very good and delicious cocktails!
Do: Have a little snack… Or rent a surfboard for one hour and hit the waves really quickly. They are good for beginners…
My tip: Go there before sunset time…. After a certain hour it gets very very full and it will be difficult to find a free table to sit at (even at low season)…
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Where: Croatia: Split: Old Town
When: I would say June or September… Not too many people but warm
Get there: If you’re staying outside the city center take a bus… Otherwise you can just walk to it…
Price: Its free being there… But getting food or drinks can be expensive.
Do: Not miss the markets around the city walls! Lovely to see and you can also get cheap fruits, veg or even clothes….
My tip: Wake up early… The masses of people can get annoying… and taking pictures without anyone in it is gonna be very difficult.
Where: New Zealand: Taupo, Wanaka, Queenstown (amongst others)
When: During spring or summer. New Zealand is definitely colder than most people expect. Even in January and February the temperature can drop under 20C.
Price: I would say New Zealand is in the middle. Not as expensive as Australia, but not as cheap as one could travel in Thailand or Indonesia.
Get there: You definitely need a car to get to the most beautiful places. If you don’t want to drive you can try one of the hop on hop off bus company. They drive you everywhere and have many popular stops you can choose from.
Do: Have a wetsuit. Some lakes are glacier lakes and the water is freezing cold even in summer. So if you want to swim I suggest you’ll get a wetsuit to last longer in the water.
My tip: Beware of the ducks. They are vicious and definitely not afraid of you. I did the mistake and sat down with a sandwich… And it was gone immediately. So if you want to eat stay away from them. Unless you want to feed them, then go ahead.