travel

Camelback mountain

I love to hike up Camelback every year when I go back to phoenix. I’ve been hiking up to Camelback since my college (Too cheap to pay for a gym membership… Broke college life lol) days in phoenix, AZ. This mountain is the hardest hike I’ve accomplished in the Phoenix area. Camel’s back ridge line if not for the faint of heart. There are rails in certain parts for you to grip and pull yourself up. I had Nikes shoes – as did the majority of hikers – but proper dread would have been WAY better to provide grip and stability.

Hiking in Phoenix is very beautiful, especially once you realize that it’s going to be very different from a traditional setting. Plus, absolutely perfect weather in the wintertime is the cherry on top. The path is somewhat wide and smooth. Once we started to increase in elevation, the trail started to get rockier and there was more fancy footwork to be done.
I really enjoyed the climbing part of the hike, and before we knew it, we were at the top. Once there, we took in the views of the valley and snapped a few photos to celebrate our efforts up the mountain. On the way down, we realized the importance of hiking shoes. I was in Nikes, which were fine, though the trail is well-worn and the gravel made it slippery. We had a few moments where we almost fell, but even if we had fallen, it probably would’ve only amounted to a few scrapes and bruises. The whole trip took a little over two hours round trip, including time to stop and take photos/rest at the top (plus 15 min. Walk each way to get to/from our cars).

Overall, my experience hiking Camelback was a very positive one. It was a beautiful day, the weather was perfect, and it was just enough of a good workout without being brutal. I’d definitely return to try this trail again.

SAFETY TIPS

  1. Bring more water than you think you need
  2. On warm days, start early in the morning.
  3. Protect yourself from the sun. Camelback’s trails are exposed and do not offer shade.
  4. Wear hiking or sturdy athletic shoes

 

 

Downtown Phoenix view

Advertisements

Happy new year 2018

Last year, I made an ambitious list of resolutions. This year, I’m not even bothering. It’s not because I don’t believe in resolutions or even that I didn’t accomplish any of mine, which for the record, I did.
In 2017 I learned that planning your life out on a grand scale, say, over an entire year’s time, is not only intimidating, but really impractical. You never know where life will take you. This time last year I thought I’d be living in Paris.  I can only laugh about that as I pack my final bags for Somalia.
That doesn’t mean I’ll stop hoping, dreaming and planning, though. It just means that I’ll be adjusting how I do those things.

  1. Grab the cutest planner  you can find

Writing onto the crisp pages of a cute new planner gets me excited. Opening it makes planning feel like an event – a special daily ritual, even.  I keep one main planner and a few supplementary notebooks for life’s to-do lists, my blog and journaling. And yes, they are all adorable.

  1. Plan a little now, plan a little later 

Planning too far and too specific in the future gives me anxiety. I silently freak out. I plan in monthly or seasonal intervals. Plans that don’t seem so far away become less intimidating and more tangible.

  1. Break big goals down into smaller, specific ones

I’ll be honest: to me, big, vague goals like “save money” or “be healthy” don’t seem real. Last year, I wanted to “move more”. Then spring came, and I realized I hadn’t gotten any closer to making it happen. I needed to give it specifics. I wanted to take a yoga class. After I looked up dates, times, prices and locations, it became real and pushed me to finally get my shake, shimmy and body roll going.

So, how do you plan? Or are you just done and over with New Year’s Resolutions completely?  

 

Overall, I really just want to see growth within myself. I don’t want my life to be a passing of days. I want to have something to show for every day, month and year I’m out here in the world. I mean, if I’m going to have get older, I might as well be getting better, right?

I’m so incredibly grateful for another year! I hope I provide some inspiration for you all through this blog, this blog of mine. Thanks for following along and cheers to another year!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Love and light,

Faduma

 

 

Where is my next travel destination? Can you guess – Hint hint (think cactus)

                                                                               Story of my life ^ lol


 

 

                          

 

Dubai

I kicked off the New Year in the Middle East and it was everything I imagined. Dubai is a crazy metropolis city kind of like Vegas and Disney world minus the alcohol gambling and Mickey Mouse. There’re so many skyscrapers in Dubai with a surrounding desert and the biggest of everything in the world, including the tallest building, hotels, soon to be the biggest airport and mall.

I’ve always seen Dubai as an exotic destination and indeed it is. Everything in Dubai is massive if you can think it, they can build it. Dubai is famously known in the palm islands, which I didn’t get a chance to go see, but they’re men-made islands in the shape of a palm tree which houses multimillion dollar villas and islands shaped like countries around the world.

Dubai is pretty relaxing and it has one of the best shopping mecca I’ve ever experienced. The restaurants have a great view of the city so you can enjoy a nice meal with a lovely backdrop. At night it really comes to life. There’s lots of people walking around watching the water show or enjoying a nice dinner.

When you go to Dubai desert safari is a must. These tours are usually packaged together inclusive of an off road adventure, camel ride and an Arabic dinner underneath the stars while belly dancers entertain you. It’s an awesome experience and a great way to immerse yourself in the Middle Eastern culture.

 The highlight of Abu Dhabi and even Dubai for me has to be visiting the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. It’s a structure like no other. The mosque is so beautifully detailed and as grand as its name. The mosque has some very strict rules. Women must be covered from head to toe with only loose clothing nothing tight. The hair, especially, must be covered It’s considered pretty scared in Islamic belief

My trip to Dubai was so unique I got a glimpse of the future with all the construction projects and luxury landscapes. Yet the people, despite how quickly their home was growing still managed to maintain their culture and traditions. It was really cool to witness first hand what one of the richest nations had to offer. Dubai you did it best! Thanks for the memories.

Love,

Faduma

 

 

 

 

Dubai mall

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

Spice shopping in the souk

   Dancing water show

 


 

Paris

I arrived in Paris a little past noon. My hotel check in wasn’t until 2pm. So we left my luggage at the hotel and decided to explore the neighborhood. I purchased some groceries from the local grocery store, took a few photos of Montmartre. I mean, the buildings in Paris, I’ve never seen anything like it. I could literally spend hours looking at them. So beautifully designed. The first thing I noticed upon exiting the metro was the Moulin Rouge.

I spent the day wandering among some of the main attractions, stopping for café lattes and macaroons, shopping in the boutique stores and generally loving every corner of this gorgeous city.
Paris may be the city of love and one of the most romantic places in the world, but I’ve been having a little romance with the city itself. It turns out I LOVE Paris.

I’ve spent weeks and weeks in Paris, and I’ve barely scratched its surface. Just when you think you’ve seen everything, you find new attractions, new cafés, or new markets to explore. It’s impossible to try to see it all or even begin to think you can. Many travelers come for about three days and try to see the highlights of this beautiful city. You need more time than that. I think you should plan on spending at least five days in Paris in order to see the bare minimum of what the City of Lights has to offer.

Located near the Eiffel Tower, this street is filled with good Parisian eateries. You’ll find cheese, meat, bread, vegetable, and chocolate stores to explore. I never walk away from this street without a pile of food. I eat my way through this street and then buy more for later. It’s one of my favorite streets in the city.

I met some amazing people during this trip. I learned so much about myself on this trip, as well as from others. I left Europe with a grateful heart, and so much inspiration and zeal for life. There’s nothing like spending time with people who are fulfilling their purpose, traveling, pursuing dreams that serves as a driving force to just go for it.

Travelling around

Paris has an easy-to-use Metro system, but it’s a really walkable city with a lot of the main sites located along the banks of the Seine. You can buy single tickets and passes, but unless you think you’ll use the Metro a lot, a carnet of 10 tickets is probably the best value. Carnets cost €14.50 and you can buy them from station ticket machines. It’s worth making the Metro trip on Line 6 between Passy and Bir-Hakeim for amazing views of the Eiffel Tower as the Metro crosses the river on a viaduct.

Top city views

I don’t know about you guys, but when I think Paris, I think the Eiffel Tower among many other things. I’ll never forget the first time I saw the Eiffel Tower from the Dome of the Basilica of Sacred Heart in Montmartre. It was everything I thought it would be, but seeing her in person up close and walking underneath her was simply surreal. A word of caution when visiting the Eiffel Tower, beware of women or anyone really asking you to sign a petition or paper of sorts. Simply shake your head no and keep on moving, as to avoid being robbed.

There are plenty of viewpoints where you can get a spectacular view across Paris, but climbing to the top of the Eiffel Tower is high on the ‘to do’ list for many visitors. Tickets for the lifts to the top cost €17 or €14.50 for aged 12–24 (book in advance on their website to avoid the worst queues), but you can save money (and burn off a few pain au chocolate) by only paying €7/€5 to take the stairs as far as the second floor. For free views across the city, some of my favorite spots are the steps outside Sacre Cœur Basilica, the top floor of the Pompidou Centre.

One of the best viewpoints when it gets dark is from the Montparnasse Tower, with a prime view of the Eiffel Tower when it’s lit up and sparkles on the hour.

 

Eiffel Tower, Top floor

Hotel Melia Paris La Defense

How gorgeous is this neighborhood

Champ Elysees

Laduree – Champ Elysees

How gorgeous Eiffel Tour, Top floor

 

Best part about traveling – Food food food

  

 Whenever I’m in Paris I love going to Angelina – Obsessed with the hot chocolate

 

 ‘

Sunday strolls – Champ Elysees

Cafe de Flore

       

 

 

 

Travel and Adventures!

To travel is a unique & adventurous indulgence in which one can expand one’s horizon; it allows you to see the world through a different perspective, experience an unlikely culture than that of your own, commingle with the locals, and excite your taste buds to astounding levels. When you engage outside of your comfort zone into a mysterious land, that is when you will find the sweetest surprises.

Traveling doesn’t mean you have to go far, you can explore in your own backyard the secrets anxiously awaiting your revelation. This can be the little hole in the wall café–with the most delectable macarons and fresh roasted coffee beans in the air. It can also mean an extravagant, ridiculous tea party amongst your friends with never ending stories of the what-if excursions.

I have dreams of African safaris, riding camels in the middle east, and learning languages 101 as I get lost. I’ve been fortunate enough to have crossed an abundance of destinations off my list; there is so much I look forward to… Wherever the wind might take you, I wish you the best in your endeavors.

 Paris 2015

Milan world expo

Milan world expo

Venice 2015

Rome

Duomo di Milano

Spanish steps

Duomo di Milano

Duomo di Milano

Grand Mosque of Paris

Grand Mosque of Paris

Champ elysees Paris


My favorite place to get hot chocolate