Tag Archives: Discovery

Cabo Verde: What to do in Boa Vista

The Day Trip Jeep Safari

Discovering The Island

This morning, Frank and Andrea Hennick, our guides and owners of the Boa Vista Tours agency, pick us up at our hotel for a day trip in Boa Vista Island. We are a small group of about ten people in two comfortable jeeps. As the couple is German, the tour is in German. But as my friend and I do not speak German, Andrea will translate the essentials of the program in English.

We take the Route 66 paved by the women of Boa Vista, from what I understood. We cross the inland of the island, the landscape is arid and deserted and almost unreal. We will stop in Bofareira, a small village. Far from mass tourism, our guides have forged strong bonds of friendship with the villagers. We can feel a mutual respect. It sounds true and simple. And also “cliché” in a time of big cynicism. We visit the new small school, a project in which Frank participates. Some of us brought clothes and school supplies for the young students. Then we slowly take the road towards the coast.

We arrive near more tourist areas, but always avoiding the crowd. We have lunch in an idyllic beach, at the pleasant beach bar Pérola d’Chaves serving local specialties, run by a Cape Verdean woman who lived in Germany. Charming and quiet: the kind of place you don”t want to leave. In the afternoon, we go south with the huge beaches of Santa Mónica and Varandinha. Incredible scenery under a strong wind! In return, driving on the dunes of Morro d’Areia (behind the beaches). The more “adventurous” of us experience sandboarding. In short, thanks to Frank and Andrea who have a deep attachment for Boa Vista and its inhabitants, we spent a fantastic day full of discoveries and emotions. No need to speak German to participate in this wonderful excursion!

The Quad Tour

The South Coast of Boa Vista

My second time driving quad, a great moment! Lololol! This time, the activity organized by TUI extends over an afternoon (4 hours) in a breathtaking setting!

When we arrive at the quad rental center, the team gives us the equipment and explains us how to drive safetly the quad. First tip, take a plastic bag to put your belongings, so the sand doesn’t dirty them. Second tip, also take an old sweater (the wind can be cold when driving, especially at the end of the day). And basic advices, if you do not want to burn in the blazing sun: a thin long-sleeved shirt on a tank top (when you stop at a spot, it’s hot), comfortable pants with light sneakers (and socks, the sand is highly irritant) and sunglasses. In short, a good dose of common sense not very glamorous! 

We are divided into two major language groups: French and English. We will all do the same tour, one group will leave before the other and we will meet at some stops. The activity is very well supervised and secure : several instructors and some with an emergency quad that circulates back to check that none of us has any problem. Heading south of the island, the landscapes are stunning and very rocky. We crisscross on a track surrounded by small ocher hills. Then we stop in a village to buy water. We continue to the coast, where we park the quads back from the beach. In this untouched scenery, I have a feeling of infinity. When we return, nonchalantly the day goes down. I am full of sand, but what a beautiful experience! Athletic.

Visiting Sal Rey

Following the beach line

Sal Rei is the main city of Boa Vista Island. The city is small (9000 inhabitants according to Le Petit Futé guide) and very quiet. So very quickly we decide to return to our hotel by the beach, a good hour of walking taking our time. I really liked the walk, the coastline is not yet disfigured by too many resorts. There are long beaches without construction, euphoric for the eyes! We meet local and tourist walkers and runners. A lot of kitsurfers and very few beach clubs.

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés

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Tours : Boa Vista Tours & TUI

Flying to Cabo Verde : Tui Fly   

Where to sleep : Riu Palace Hotel

Related posts : Destinations & Hotel Review

Many thanks to Boa Vista Tours, TUI, TUI Fly and Riu Palace Hotel. As always, these are my opinions. 

Our Second Roadtrip in Andalusia, Spain: Cádiz

Stunning Architecture

A Walk In The Old Town

Finally in Cádiz on the Atlantic coast of Andalusia! We left the surroundings of Malaga around 10 a.m. this morning. On the way, we stopped at a beautiful deserted beach in Tarifa. Then on the road, we allso stopped at another beautiful beach in a natural reserve lost in the middle of nowhere. In short, we arrive in the historic center of Cadiz in the middle of the afternoon. Better late than never! 

Big crush for the city: the seaside reminds me Havana! The old buildings are superb. The pace is indolent in the oldest city of the West founded by the Phoenicians 3000 years ago. A movie set in a soft light, without tourists at this time of the year. The old town is small, we quickly made the tour: I take pleasure in losing myself in its streets and take the same route several times.

        

Castillo de San Sebastián

While we are looking for a café overlooking the ocean, we come across an entrance to this fortress surrounded by water (left photo below): the Castillo de San Sebastián. A very pleasant walk where we can see another point of view of Cádiz (first photo of the article). 

  

The Outdoor Café

  

Very cool, close to the cathedral of Cádiz and facing the ocean: the dream! On the left, when you are facing the Cathedral (back to the ocean). Relaxed atmosphere and great panoramic view! Excellent green olives with our drinks, I don’t want to return to Malaga (our base for this second roadtrip in Andalusia).

And if we stayed in Cadiz, darling? “The beauty of Cadiz has velvet eyes, Chi-ca! Chi-ca! Chic! Ay! Ay! Ay!“, translation: “The beauty of Cadiz has velvet eyes, Chi-ca! Chi-ca! Chic! Ay! Ay! Ay! ” (by Luis Mariano). Sorry (not sorry), I couldn’t help myself! Lol! A little vintage operetta. To be continued beautiful readers … 

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés

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Related articles : Destinations & Hotel Reviews

Tokyo: Capitol Hotel Tokyu

A Room With A View

Kumbawa Tokyo!

We arrive from Hiroshima via Himeji to visit the famous Castle. Long day including two trips in Shinkansen (bullet train), three cities – three moods and a thousand impressions! We are a little tired when we arrive in Tokyo tonight. We finally are at the Capitol Hotel Tokyu, conveniently located in Chiyoda-ku, with a metro exit that directly leads to the hotel.

What a great view from our Premier Corner Twin room at the 26th floor! We fall asleep with the show of the city lights. The room is really large: 57.8 m², which means huge for Tokyo. The shower & bath area also offers a superb view! Showering while “flying over” Tokyo. Awesome! 

Minimalist interior design with a great comfort (including an air humidifier). It is very hard to leave your bed (and the bathroom and room too, lol), even if I’m up at dawn! When traveling, I like getting up very early. And in the Land of the Rising Sun, from 5 a.m. it is broad daylight.

  

The Swimming Pool

Some Lengths

My second pool of 20 meters long in Tokyo’s skyscrapers. The first one was at the 47th floor of Park Hyatt Tokyo. Here you can also enjoy a beautiful view of Tokyo. As it opens from 6:30 a.m., we serenely swim before breakfast.

The pool is adjacent to the spa. Unfortunately, we did not have time to test the Carju Rajah Tiado spa. We only stay two nights and Tokyo is huge! For the next trip, the beautista in me will make you a “spa and beauty in Japan” article.

  

The Breakfast

At Origami Restaurant

The breakfast room opens onto the hotel’s garden (pictured above). Which brings a zen contemplative touch. And makes us forget the effervescence of Tokyo!

The buffet is delicious with croissants as good as in France! The products are fresh and the service  is pleasant, besides throughout the hotel, the teams are efficient, polite and smiling. Photos below: our different breakfasts.  

The Entry Hall

This morning, we hit the road for an onsen weekend in Hakone. By depositing our suitcases at the reception (which we pick up back after Hakone), we hear live Japanese music.

What a lovely surprise! In front of the impressive bouquet in the hotel’s entry hall, an elegant musician in kimono plays a traditional instrument. Superb mix and contrast with the modern architecture! Just like our stay at the Capitol Hotel Tokyu, an experience full of finesse. 

    

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés

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Capitol Hotel Tokyu

Planning your trip with Exclusif Voyages

Flying to Japan : direct flights from Brussels & Paris with ANA

Related articles : DESTINATIONS & HOTEL REVIEWS

Many thanks to Exclusif Voyages, Ryokan Collection and Capitol Hotel Tokyu for this beautiful invitation. As always theses are my opnions.