Through The Lens: Bruges Impressions #2

Today I have some more photographs of Bruges for you. This is the second edition of „Through The Lens: Bruges Impressions“, if you have not seen the first part of this small photography series, click here.

I hope you enjoy the photographs!

Brügge-J

Brügge-K
The „Grote Markt“ is so beautiful!

Brügge-L

Brügge-M

Brügge-N
I became obsessed with taking pictures of beautiful doorways!

Brügge-O

Brügge-P
and another doorway…
Brügge-Q
…last one, I promise!
Brügge-R
This is what happens when you are taking pictures while you are walking… but still- these houses are so beautiful!

Thanks for „reading“!
xx, Sophie

Exploring Lisboa, three days in Portugal‘s capital #1

Blogpost contains unsponsored ads (Airlines, Hostels, Restaurants etc.). These are all my personal recommendations based on my experience in Lisbon, Portugal. I don’t get paid for mentioning any of these places.

LISBON. I fell in love with this beautiful city. In the end of October I booked a flight to Lisbon in the middle of the night. It was actually two in the morning and I couldn’t sleep. The past few months the urge to go travelling by myself again, grew a lot. And I knew that now was the time. So I booked a flight with Ryanair and a Hostel on Hostelworld. (I’ve already considered planting a tree or collecting waste, because I don’t really trust the airlines eco donation program, I still need to look that campaign up…)

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-1

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-3

By the end of November, the time had come and I went to the Luxemburg Airport and took a plane to wonderful LISBOA. The flight was on time, I only carried a small backpack and therefore didn’t have to wait for my luggage. The Metro station is located directly next to the Airport and getting to the city centre couldn’t be easier! I took two subways and within 30 minutes I found myself at the promenade of Lisbon. (I will publish another post about my hostel, public transport, expenses etc.)

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-4
Praça do Comércio, Lisbon’s main square.
LIS-Nikon-Tag1-5
Beautiful Trams everywhere!
LIS-Nikon-Tag1-6
Arco do Triunfo

I arrived at Cais do Sodré and walked down the promenade until I arrived at the Praça do Comércio. My first impression was „wow it looks even better than in all the pictures“ and my second one was „why are here so few people“. It was a Sunday afternoon in November. Definitely not the hot season but good for me, there weren’t as many tourists present, I can’t imagine how crowded the city must become during summer, even I’d love to visit Lisbon during the summer months.

I sat down at the shore, took a couple of breaths and enjoyed the smell of saltwater. I’ve really missed travelling!

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-7

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-8

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-9

After having passed the big Arco da Rua Augusta (also called Arco do Triunfo), I discovered the labyrinths of small streets in Lisbon. There are restaurants in the middle of the streets, just like the ones on the famous „La Rambla“ in Barcelona. To be honest, I wouldn’t eat there, I’m quite sure the food and drinks will cost you a lot more than usual. It was quite funny when I caught sight of a couple that took the same plane as I did, sitting in a restaurant in the middle of the street. I decided to walk to my hostel, instead of taking a bus. I feel like it’s so much easier to develop a sense of direction when you’re exploring places by foot. On my way to the hostel, which was located in the Bairro alto, I’ve already found the place where I wanted to have dinner and saw many little boutiques and shops. There are so many cute shops in this city where people sell handmade jewellery, fair trade soap, old books or vintage clothes. It’s definitely worth checking some of those out, just to get some inspiration. Personally, I enjoy looking at beautiful small gifts, boutiques etc. But I love to look at it as a whole, because even if I decided to buy something, it wouldn’t be as beautiful at my home, as at the store. You know. Conscious buying and minimalism. 😀

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-10
View from the Jardím de São Pedro de Alcântara
LIS-Phone-Tag1-1
Elevador da Glória

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-11

Walking uphill, I spotted one of the three Elevadores, the trams that just go straight up and down one single hill (street). The one I saw is the Elevador da Glória and one ride costs 3,80€. Next to this small tram is the Jardím de São Pedro de Alcântara, which provides you with an amazing view of the city. When I was there, there were constructions going on, but it was still a very nice place.

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-12
One of the small shops I really loved, they had travel related books, soaps, art, everything!

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-13

LIS-Nikon-Tag1-14

After I checked in at my hostel, which was pretty easy to find by the way, I decided to go for an Asian dinner and had Salad, Tofu and Edamame at a restaurant called „Noods„. The Atmosphere was great, the food was delicious and they offer a big variety of Asian dishes and have vegan options. I don’t know why but I tend to eat a lot of Asian food when I’m travelling, no matter where I am…

LIS-Phone-Tag1-2
Noods, Asian cuisine, great dishes, bowls etc.

After having enjoyed my dinner and a Portuguese beer, I realised that it was still too early to go back to the hostel and decided that I was going to look for a rooftop bar called „PARK“ which is located on top of a parking lot. I actually found the parking lot and went up the stairs till I reached the upper level. Alright, to be honest, the walk upstairs is a little cheeky, if I hadn’t known that there was actually a bar on top of the building, I wouldn’t have gone up there (is that a sentence?). But I was eager to see the bar so I took the stairs, ignored the weed smoking teenagers and well, it was definitely worth it! The bar has an urban flair, provides a great view on the city, is decorated with plants, has two DJs who are playing good music and has an indoor and an outdoor space. Unfortunately they closed at 8pm that Sunday, probably because it was off season, I am sure it’s different during summertime.

 

I really enjoyed my first day in Lisbon and after I’ve had a nice dinner and a drink at PARK, I went to bed, tired, but with a smile on my face.

Stay tuned for the next Lisbon posts! I am still not sure if I prefer the ‚travel-diary‘ kind of articles, or the ‚recommendation-must-see‘ ones. What do you prefer to read?

Have you ever been to Lisbon?

Afternoon in Amsterdam

Hello everybody,

before we get into my little Amsterdam experience, I just want to draw your attention to my new domain. Unfortunately, someone managed to use my old domain and I had to switch to http://www.aperture-wanderlust.com – I just wanted to let you know! Sorry for the inconvenience.

Amsterdam06-18-3

Amsterdam06-18-1

Alrighty, in June 2018 my friend and I decided to go on a road trip to Belgium and the Netherlands. On our way back to Germany we decided spend an afternoon in Amsterdam. Since it was a quite spontaneous-low budget-trip, we did not plan to stay over night and parked in a P&R parking area for only a couple of euros. The parking fee also included the ticket for public transport. From there we just took a tram to the main train station in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam06-18-2

Amsterdam06-18-4

Amsterdam06-18-6

Amsterdam06-18-5

To be honest, I definitely need to go back because even though we have seen and admired the pretty buildings, streets and channels, we have not been to a single museum and I cannot really give you any tips or recommendations besides from just strolling around and enjoying the beauty of the city.

Amsterdam06-18-12

Amsterdam06-18-8

Amsterdam06-18-17

Amsterdam06-18-14

Amsterdam06-18-11

However, what I really love about Amsterdam is how friendly and open people are. People talked to us on the streets, complimented us from their bikes and the atmosphere in general was really nice. As you can see, I took many pictures of the facades and channels, of course we could not miss taking some pictures of ourselves 🙂

Amsterdam06-18-9

Amsterdam06-18-15

Amsterdam06-18-7

Amsterdam06-18-16

We finished our little side trip to this gorgeous city with some good old pasta in a nice, little restaurant. I will definitely come back!

Do you have any recommendations for my next Amsterdam trip?

Thanks for reading!
Sophie

New York City #3 – „If I can make it there I’m gonna make it anywhere“

Start spreading the news
I am leaving today
I want to be a part of it
New York, New York

These vagabond shoes
Are longing to stray
Right through the very heart of it
New York, New York

NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-3

I wanna wake up, in a city
That doesn’t sleep
And find I’m king of the hill
Top of the heap

This little town blues
Are melting away
I’ll make a brand new start of it
In old New York

NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-5

If I can make it there
I’ll make it anywhere
It’s up to you
New York, New York

New York, New York
I want to wake up in that city
That never sleeps
And find I’m hey number one
Top of the list
King of the hill
Hey number one

NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-6

These are little town blues
They have all melted away
I’m gonna make a brand new start of it
In old New York
And I
If I can make it there
I’m gonna make it anywhere
It’s up to you
New York, New York, New York

-New York, New York by Frank Sinatra

NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-7

This song by Frank Sinatra is one of my favourites!
„If I can make it there I’m gonna make it anywhere“
I wish I could live in NYC one day, walking down the streets of Manhattan everyday, having dinner in SOHO, meeting my friends for lunch and doing window shopping on fifth avenue.

NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-2
Statue of Liberty, smaller than expected…

These pictures were taken on the Staten Island Ferry. I can highly recommend taking this Ferry, since you don’t have to pay for it and the view is stunning!

NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-1

This post is not about the writing, more about the impressions.
I hope you enjoyed it anyhow!

Xx, Sophie

 

 

Pin it and don’t forget it!NYC-Staten-Island-Ferry-Pinterest

 

New York City #2 – „The lights are so bright but they never blind me“

Walkin‘ through a crowd, the village is a glow
Kaleidoscope of a loud, hide beats under coats
Everybody here wanted somethin‘ more
Searchin‘ for a sound we hadn’t heard before
And it said

Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York
Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York

New-York-B-8

It’s a new soundtrack I could dance to this beat, beat forevermore
The lights are so bright but they never blind me, me
Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York

When we first dropped our bags on apartment floors
Took our broken hearts and put them in a drawer
Everybody here was someone else before
And you can want who you want
Boys and boys and girls and girls

New-York-B-5

Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York
Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York

It’s a new soundtrack I could dance to this beat, beat forevermore
The lights are so bright but they never blind me, me
Welcome to New York (New York!)
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York

New-York-B-2

Like any great love, it keeps you guessing
Like any real love, it’s ever-changing
Like any true love, it drives you crazy
But you know you wouldn’t change anything, anything, anything

Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York
Welcome to New York
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York, welcome to New York

New-York-B-7

It’s a new soundtrack I could dance to this beat
The lights are so bright but they never blind me
Welcome to New York
New soundtrack
It’s been waitin‘ for you
Welcome to New York
The lights are so bright but they never blind me
Welcome to New York
So bright, they never blind me
Welcome to New York
Welcome to New York

– Welcome to New York, Taylor Swift

New-York-B-9

„The lights are so bright they never blind me“! I really love this song by Taylor Swift!
I am so sorry, but it took me three days to upload these pictures. I do not know what is going on with our wifi at the moment, I hope my Dad can fix it soon.

Today, I will be sharing with you another New York City photograph collection from 2015. (Click here if you want to read my first NYC post)
Additionally, I thought I could share with you my personal NYC Bucket list/ to-do list, while showing you my favourite photographs.

New-York-B-6

Explore Manhattan by foot

We loved to walk through the streets instead of taking the subway. We discovered so many pretty and interesting streets, partly far away from the famous tourist spots.
In addition, you will probably be able to take some special street photographs.

New-York-B-4

 Looking for Serena van der Woodsen and Blair Waldorf

Something I really wanted to do when I was in NYC was visiting Upper East Side.
I loved watching Gossip Girl and I thought having a look at the great buildings and houses of Manhattan’s elite would be quite nice. Sadly, there was not enough time left and I was not able to explore this part of Manhattan.

New-York-B-1

Visit Wall Street

Visiting Wall Street and seeing the New York Stock Exchange and the Charging-Bull in Bowling-Green-Park was very special for me. Mainly because I am extremely interested in politics and economics. Although I do not want to support capitalism (which is very difficult), it was exciting to walk down the streets, imagining how all the Brokers are negotiating and selling inside the buildings.
Unfortunately, my photographs from the Financial District are not that special and they did not make it into the post.

New-York-B-10

Biking in Central Park

Going on a run in Central Park may be quite nice, but it is not as great as renting a bike and exploring the green lungs of NYC, almost feeling like a local…(almost!!!).
I can highly recommend doing this, since you will need a break after having explored Manhattan by foot. 😉

New-York-B-11

World Trade Center Site, also known as Ground Zero

After the September 11 attacks, the World Trade Center Site was rebuild and they created a huge memorial where the Twin Towers were located before the attack.
It is very impressive to see the waterfalls running down the black marble and to read all the names of the victims. I think we should all take a deep breath and pay our respect to these people.

New-York-B-12

I hope you enjoyed reading my second NYC post.
Stay tuned,

Sophie

 

 

Pin it and don’t forget it!NYC-TravelGuide-Pinterest

New York City #1 – The City That Never Sleeps

Grew up in a town
That is famous as a place
Of movie scenes

Noise is always loud
There are sirens all around
And the streets are mean

If I can make it here
I can make it anywhere
That’s what they say

Seeing my face in lights
Or my name on marquees
Found down on Broadway

Even if it ain’t all it seems
I got a pocketful of dreams
Baby, I’m from

New York
Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothing you can’t do
Now you’re in New York

These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Hear it for New York
New York, New York- Empire State Of Mind, Alicia Keys

NY-A-12.png
Standing in front of this skyline was breathtaking

In the song „Empire State Of Mind“, Alicia Keys describes New York City perfectly.
I fell in love with New York. I fell in love with the buildings, the people, the movement, the spirit.

NY-A-8
This is one of my favourite Times Square pictures!

NY-A-10

In 2015 I travelled to Boston and stayed with a lovely host family for ten days.
After our stay in Massachusetts, we took a plane to New York City and discovered this amazing place for four days.

NY-A-9
Have you noticed Heidi Klum on the add space in the background?
NY-A-11
Wow, what a photo bomb. Thanks dude! 😀

During the landing, I listened to the song by Alicia Keys, overwhelmed by the feeling, that I would soon visit on of the most amazing and vivid cities in the world.
After having left the airplane, the adventure began.

NY-A-13

NY-A-6

It took us almost two hours to get to our hostel in Union City because we were stuck in a huge traffic jam. The „Explore Hotel and Hostel“ was quite nice, although I think it depends on the room you are staying in. We (5 girls) shared a suite with a little bathroom. As far as I can remember, it was not that expensive and I took us 20 minutes to get from the hostel to the Times Square. (Going by bus was very cheap)

NY-A-3
Times Square

NY-A-7

The Times Square is just amazing. So many people from all over the world taking pictures of the gigantic advertising space. Famous stores like the Disney Store, American Apparel and Forever 21 are located around the square. You can also walk down Broadway and negotiate with the tourist guides and maybe you will get a „cheap“ ticket and enjoy a special musical on Broadway. We watched „Les Misérables“ and it was marvellous!

NY-A-4
This street performer must have had sore legs after standing on these „stilts“ (??) for a whole day.
NY-A-5
This Minnie Mouse wanted me to pay her 4$ to take a picture with her…

But the number one lesson to remember is: Scarcely anything is without charge at Times Square! There are so many tourist guides who want to grab your attention and sell expensive tickets to you. When your not travelling in a group of people like we did (We were 15 students plus two teachers), then you should probably buy your tickets online before going on your trip.
You will also see many people in costumes who want to take pictures with you in exchange for a dollar or two. But I guess you already know that.
We even saw the Naked Cowboy, casually playing his guitar in the middle of the streets.
I guess he is pretty famous, since I’ve already seen him on TV in Germany.

NY-A-1
The Naked Cowboy, eye candy :D?

NY-A-2

I still miss the hum of cars and horns, the colourful lights from the huge stores, the shouting of police officers and tourist guides. Music and vivid conversations everywhere, traffic and yellow cabs.

Noise is always loud
There are sirens all around

But it is such a wonderful place!
I hope you enjoyed the first post of my New York series!

Stay tuned and have a great week!

Sophie

 

 

Pin it and don’t forget it!NewYork-A-Pinterest

My thoughts on MINIMALISM – happiness, a state of being or a state of having?

„Spend your money on experiences that are gonna feed your soul instead of stuff that’s gonna clutter up your life!“

…is one of my favourite quotes from a TED talks speaker, who held a speech about minimalism. I can highly recommend watching these speeches, they are so motivating, informing and inspiring!

Minimalism-My-thoughts-4

Today, I would like to talk about a topic which is very important for me: Minimalism.
When I was a child, I used to collect everything. Dolls, papers, leafs, everything.
My room was always full of useless clutter! Later, when I became more interested in clothes, shoes, make-up and stuff, I hoarded tons of these things and the more I bought, the unhappier I became. At that time, this did not make sense to me. I mean, we are almost conditioned to buy stuff in order to be happy. We always need the latest iPhone, that new pair of Nike Sneakers etc. Large business companies want us to maintain our consumerous lifestyle,  they keep on creating new innovations and produce products, which are „predestined“ to die after two years.

Minimalism-My-thoughts-1

After years of buying and tossing, I decided that I do not want to promote this lifestyle and I started watching Ted talks speeches about minimalism and downsizing.
In addition, I began to downsize my own stuff and stopped buying without thinking.
The point of minimalism is that you do not have to toss and sell everything in order to have all your belongings fit in one backpack, (don’t get me wrong, this is amazing!) but you have to create your own rules and live your personal minimalistic lifestyle, in order to become happy with less belongings!

Additionally, one side effect of minimalism is that you will have more money. Consequently, you can spend your money on experiences and travel for example and in most cases, these experiences will probably fulfill your life to an extent which consumer goods never will.
Why should we spent hundreds of dollars on a designer bag when we could also live in Thailand for a month for the same amount of money?

The less you own, the less you have to take care of.
And the less you own, the happier you will probably be.

Minimalism-My-thoughts-2

I really wanted to share my personal thoughts with you, and I would also love to write a „Minimalism Guide“ as well. Please let me know, if you are interested!
At the moment, I am often thinking about happiness and how to create a lifestyle and a mind-set which allows us to be happy and independent of how much money we have.
You may have wondered why I am showing you these pictures of me, sitting in front of a white wall. I do not really know. I guess it is because I love to take minimalistic photographs, because there is no clutter which distracts the viewer from the human being in the centre of the photo.

Have a nice and sunny week! Enjoy the little things.

Sophie

 

Pin it and don’t forget it!Minimalism-Pinterest