Chapter Wanderlust II: Luxembourg City

Expensive! That is the first thing that comes to mind when I think of Luxembourg! Or better known as the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. It is one of Europe most charming city of all time and the medieval old town is an UNESCO World heritage Site as well. One of the smallest landlocked country in Europe. In the past Lux was severely impacted by the wars and invaded by neighbouring countries which is also another reason why they have been a believer of peace and a supporter of the European Union. The city is host to a number of EU organization, making Luxembourg City one of the capital cities of EU. It is a city where the population is highly inflated in day time and during weekdays where most of the people travel into the city and work, but choose to stay outside of Luxembourg given the high cost of living! In the evening, and on weekends such as the sunday that I was here it seems like a dead city and awfully quiet. I did not spend much time here since I was just stopping enroute to Rotterdam! Still would like to do up a short post sharing on the little spots that I love in Luxembourg City!

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Chapter Wanderlust II: Hotel Empire Luxembourg

I had a one night stay in the little tiny Luxembourg! Well! I have to say that Lux was never on my mind and on the list to visit! Fate as it is, I was trying to save money seeing that a direct train from Strasbourg to Rotterdam would be 100 over Euros. But instead a train ride to the nearby Luxembourg as well as a flixbus would take me to Netherlands for 40 euros. The savings was way too much. At least that is another country and another city to my list making Lux my No. 27 country! I will certainly share more about this expensive boutique landlocked country next. Luxembourg City, is famed for its fortified medieval old town perched on sheer cliffs. Beautiful! The train ride in was eventful but that is another story for another day! Luxembourg is also one of the most expensive place in the world, on par with Switzerland. Another good reason on why people should just come in for a day trip! I however had one night! There are no hilton option! It is also not a place for backpackers. I just screen thru some of the cheapest hotel on booking.com and found Hotel Empire!

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Chapter Wanderlust II: Strasbourg

Strasbourg in the Alsace region, located near the border of Germany. It is also the capital of the Grand Est, this place is bustling with colors, timber. The history of alternating between German and French control over the centuries and its past also shows the mixtures of two cultures in this city! It is certainly one of the most interesting French city in the east to visit. Strasbourg is also one of the capital city of the EU! Besides it is also an interesting fact that I have been to all EU Capitals, together with Brussels, Frankfurt and Luxembourg City! The city is well known for its gothic cathedral that towers over the city as well as the cobbled streets and timber-framed houses that have survived for hundreds of years. It is impressive to see this buildings and we were also lucky enough that they survive the bombing raids in the world war! Follow me on my relaxing stay in Strasbourg!

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Chapter Wanderlust II: Colmar

I am sure you all have heard of Colmar before or seen pictures of all those charming colorful attractive timber houses. It is a place that feels super unreal, nothing like France or in fact the imperialistic grand style that you are used to in Paris. More like a western fairy land, something that it is truly out of the world. The closest that I have seen these houses and building style will be from my trip to Hallstatt back 2 years ago. But Colmar comes as the more vibrant one, the more playful and happening town. The houses run next to canals with the iconic timber crossing as well as striking colors of brown, yellow and many more. It certainly reminds me of something that I will see in the movie Up, or in lego bricks played by kids. Colmar is also frequently ranked as one of the must visit in the world and a top destination in France as well as in Europe in guides. Feels like you are in Germany, but in fact the only greetings you hear are Bonjour and Bonsoir!

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Chapter Wanderlust II: Hilton Strasbourg

Continuing on my solo adventures, I was off, next to Strasbourg, a lovely French city near the border with germany. I have always been intrigued by this place and the mix of influences between French and German! It is certainly one of the most interesting place to visit. Strasbourg is also one of the capital city of the EU! Located in the Alsace region. Besides it is also an interesting fact that I have been to all EU Capitals, together with Brussels, Frankfurt and Luxembourg City! I will leave Strasbourg itself for a separate post all together. I spend quite a bit of time in Strasbourg, staying there for 4 nights in total. I have been on the road for quite a bit and moving around by this time. Hopping to take it down a notch and rest. I will also do a day trip to the nearby town of Colmar! Hilton Strasbourg is a solid 4 star hotel that is located just out the other fringe of the city centre. It is a easy tram ride away of 2 to 3 stops or just a 15 mins stroll. I do think that the location is not too bad. It is kind of quiet around the hotel though! Although a local friend tell me that it is a rather safe place!

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Chapter Wanderlust II: Lille

The very first city of my solo adventures would be Lille! Lille is a city on the North East side of the country. It is located near belgium and known as one of the gateway to Europe as well. Lille is also one of the stops for the eurostar, making it one of the crossroads to everywhere in Europe. Although being one of the largest establishment in France, it is definitely much much less crowded than Paris, making it pleasant to walk around and yet at the same time, it is still a metropolitan with all the stores and boutiques that you may want. A perfect mid size city to stay in. I have to say that it is definitely not a city that was on my list beforehand, but I did get a host who offered to host me in Lille and the train ticket from Paris was affordable. With that comes a little review on Lille! I figure that this would be rather beneficial, especially for those who would like to stop by in the middle of their Eurostar journey or those on the way to other city!

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Chapter Wanderlust II: Introduction

Unsure of how many such trips I am still able to take in the future, it is rather better to be living in the moment and do it while I can, while I am able. You never know when you will run out of time or the ability to do so. Continuing on my previous adventure The Bucket List, I separated from my parents in Paris and continue on alone in Europe. This time around I want to visit lesser known cities and definitely avoid those tourists attractions. I also did it pretty last minute and this is more of an impromptu, looking up the map and where should I head to tomorrow kind of solo trip. Well it guess it kind of mix it up for me and gave me extra excitement. I will share my thoughts on winging it at the end of this whole series!

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The Bucket List: How much did I spend for 25 days in U.K, Ireland and Paris?

Doing a little summary after this astonishing trip, The Bucket List is my second trip of the year after The Cathay Present! Do check that out if you haven’t already done so. This time around, I am headed to Europe, or more specifically with the focus on Scotland and in particular Isle of Skye. The trip was over the summer, coming from Singapore, I hate to travel to warm countries. New Zealand was actually the place to go, being high up on my bucket list. However it doesn’t seem to be practical to head there in full blown winter either where driving might be a challenge. Then I thought of the UK, where it is neither too cold or warm in the summer. Then there was scotland, a place that I would like to go and the Isle of Skye after hearing so much about it. So that came to the gist of this trip! I would just like to share some of my thoughts with you as well as sharing how much this trip cost in total!

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The Bucket List: Paris

I was in Paris, 7 years back, in 2012. 7 years of itch sure is a curse and I am thankful to be able to head back this time around to catch up on some of my misses the previous time around. It is certainly amazing to come back to this romantic City of Lights but perhaps not in the middle of a heat wave. I certainly enjoy far better strolling around these Parisian streets and the banks of Seine River this previous time around. Paris was kinda a hit or a miss, I am not sure what is your ideal way of travelling. Paris has its beautiful side as well as the ugly ones. It is the most romantic city in the world but also crowded, full of pickpockets and dirty. However I will still like to share with you guys a couple of places that I went to this time! Bonjour and Bonsoir everyone!

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The Bucket List: Bouillon Chartier

One of the most iconic bistro in town when in Paris is Bouillon Chartier. It is one that is popular with both locals as well as tourists. A bistro served up which is said to have its roots from Paris is a local small restaurant, serving affordable simple meals with alcohol. Bistros are defined mostly by the foods they serve. You can expect to find French home-style cooking, and slow-cooked foods like cassoulet, a bean stew in them. Let me just say that Bouillon Chartier is nothing but small or modest. It is one of the most famous dining joint in Paris. Serving up iconic French dishes since 1896, it is more than a century old. Located in the 9th arrondissement which is also the main shopping district, it is perfect after a long day being on your feet. It is also open from 11.30am to midnight everyday. No reservation is allowed. Do expect long queues at peak hours although given the amount of tables, it move rather fast.

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The Bucket List: Train Travels in France and thoughts on Ouigo

I hope you have enjoyed both of my previous post regarding my trip to the Champagne region. Since I was based in Paris, I had to take a train to the Grand Est region and the only one that works out for my timing was Ouigo. I am sure this is rather new to you guys, in fact, despite being that well travelled, it is also my first time hearing of it. I would just like to share my experience on Ouigo in this post since it is rather unique in terms of train travels in Europe. Furthermore, hopefully I will be able to highlight the various key points that you have to take note of when travelling with Ouigo! Trust me, it is a direct contrast to the fuss less, common train travels in Europe!

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The Bucket List: Dom Perignon Visit X Champagne Journey in Epernay

Continuing on my Champagne adventure, I am particularly interested in what is coming next. A private visit to Dom Perignon and the Moet Caves Cellars which is the largest and most expensive among all champagne house as well as in the area. Moet & Chandon can also be said as the most famous champagne house of all time! Furthermore Dom Perignon, the world class famous, highly prized vintage only champagne! I haven’t been this excited in a long time. For those who might not know, Dom Perignon is a champagne brand under Moet & Chandon. But it is released under its own branding Dom Perignon itself. Think of it like a BMW M Cars and normal BMW. They share the same facility but have different cellars masters as well as release. The Moet & Chandon Champagne house is located in Epernay, the other major champagne town in the Grand Est region. It is just a short walk from the train station and located on Avenue de Champagne! Can I live on this street?

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