Catching Happiness

If you’ve been reading my recent posts, you’ll know that June is a bit of a hectic month for me, but in a good way: I’m currently travelling across five countries with a friend, which you can keep up with over on Instagram.

Screen Shot 2018-06-02 at 10.46.16.png

Because of how busy June is, I thought I’d take this opportunity to share some short poems on my blog. The first of which is about the elusive nature of happiness…

Continue reading

How To Make Budget Travel Plans

One of the main reasons people say they don’t travel is down to money. A lot of people out there will go on to claim that finances are just an excuse, and it is possible to travel with little to no money. While I’m not going to claim that it can’t be done, I am going to say that it does cost something to travel and everyone’s idea of ‘little money’ is different. Effective travel budgeting takes planning and experience to get right and I want to share some of the realistic things I’ve learnt that have saved me cash on the road.

Of course, the best way to truly grab yourself a budget travel deal is through complete flexibility with both time and place. In this ideal world, there’s no restriction on the time you spend away, what month you go abroad, or the destination you visit. Yet, I know this is not the case for most of us. There’s always something to get in the way. So each of the following ideas are adaptable to the amount of flexibility you have, and some will be more helpful for you than others.

Continue reading

Anxiety Should Not Stop You From Travelling The World by Travel Lit

I’m happy to announce the second guest post on my blog, by the lovely Linda from Travel Lit. In return, I wrote a post about how I used the internet to find farm work and friends in Hawaii at age 18. If this captures your interest, head on over to Travel Lit to have a read. It includes tips on finding these opportunities across the world and an account of my personal experience as a young solo traveller. But for now, stick around to read Linda’s story of travelling with anxiety…


It is unbelievable how many people are suffering from anxiety nowadays. And it is crazy how many people do not know that the cause of their weird, unexplainable problems is actually anxiety. So many of us feel unsafe, worried and constantly anxious and it keeps us from even the most basic daily chores. When it comes to traveling, leaving the house and heading into the unknown, anxiety tends to pull together all its power and hit extra hard. Well, I am no exclusion and I deal with it every day while constantly on the road. And, if I can deal with it and enjoy my travels to the fullest – anyone can. Let’s see how it attacks and how to overcome it for good! And most importantly, acknowledge that anxiety should not stop you from traveling.

Continue reading

What’s In My Bag: 1 Month Backpacking List

As this post goes out to the world, my friend and I will be about to (hopefully) make it to Poland. As is the deal with all my June posts, this one is pre-written so there’s a chance I’m not where this post thinks I am. But, if everything goes to plan, I have spent several days exploring Athens and have now come across Europe to see the beautiful sights of Warsaw. From here, I will be hopping over to Prague, then staying in Amsterdam for a while before making my way across the pond to New York. If you haven’t already realised, this is a diverse adventure: packing things that suit all of the stops on this trip is not exactly going to be the easiest task.

But fear not. I have a little experience travelling (pretty) light, and I’m going to do everything I can to keep the weight down for this trip. After all, the carry-on limit on one of our planes is 8kg…

Continue reading

Small Ways To Be Kind To Yourself by Johnzelle

Today is an exciting day – the first guest post on my blog! As I am currently travelling and have less time to create content, I was very happy to accept Johnzelle’s suggestion for a guest post. I love the topic of this post so I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did…


Hello everyone! My name is Johnzelle and I write a mental health blog. I reached out to Alys who gave me the go-ahead to write a guest blog for y’all! Today, I’ll be talking about being kind to yourself.

We all learned in kindergarten about the Golden Rule, right? “Do to others what you want them to do to you.” The majority of us try to live this out daily to maintain some sort of social courtesy. A lot of mental health discussions focus on our environment. We try to be mindful of how we interact with others, how we take care of ourselves, and how we think about the world around us and our experiences within it.

Continue reading

Choosing Destinations Based on Cheap Flights: My June Travel Plans

We’ve fully crept into June now – the sun is more persistent, and the clouds are shying away. At least, this is my prediction from pre-writing this post in the middle of May. Let’s be honest, it’s probably more likely that it’s raining on the day I post this, or we’ve got that weird weather which even Brits don’t know how to handle: half of us are strutting in shorts and making the slapping sound on the pavement with our flip-flops, and the other half of us have looked out the window and decided it’s a scarf day. I feel like this introduction is a little pointless, seeing as all of this is purely guesswork. How do people cope with scheduling posts? I’m never organised enough to do these.

So you’re probably wondering then, why did I write this post so long ago? Well, ladies and gentlemen, this is a skill I’m going to have to perfect over May (have had to perfect over May?) – wait, I am getting so confused. How do people deal with tenses in pre-written posts? Agh. Anyway, for the rest of June, and start of July, all of my posts are going to be like this. Well, hopefully not full of quite so many messy-and-confused vibes, but either way they will have been written in advance.

This is because I am going travelling! I had my last day at work in May, sent in my final university essays, and my friend arrived from Florida on 6th to begin our European/American adventure. I thought it would be nice to let you all know where I’m off to, considering it’s impacting my blogging schedule quite a bit…

P1010923.JPG

Where are we going?

Sofia, Bulgaria… sort of

We’ll be having an eight hour layover here on the first leg of our journey and we’re hoping to get out of the airport to explore the city a little. I’ve heard lots of great things about Sofia, so if we like it we might have to pop back another time to do the city justice. Hopefully we’ll have time to see a couple of churches and roam the streets a bit before hoping back on the plane to…

Athens, Greece

I guess this will count as our first real stop on the trip. A city steeped in so much history, I’ve got pretty high expectations. Watch out Greece, you better impress me. Next up is…

Warsaw, Poland

Somewhere I have less expectations for but probably not justifiably. Poland has never been on my travel radar really, until I started seeing images of the beautiful cities and landscape. Apparently Poland has a lot to offer, but it’s kept that one quite quiet! After a few days, we’ll hop over to…

Prague, Czech Republic

I’ve heard a little bit about the amazing sights of Prague but have yet to experience them first hand. We have enough time here to relax and soak it all in, so hopefully the weather will be nice! Then we fly to…

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

This is the one destination on the list I have been to before, around eight years ago with my family, when I was twelve. I loved it then and I’m interested to see what it will be like going to the same place with a new perspective. Then we say bye to Europe and finish off with a week in…

New York City, USA

I’ve always wanted to go here, but honestly, who hasn’t? It’s seriously cliché to want to visit the Big Apple but I’m not denying it, so it’s fine, right? I think this will be a great way to end a trip across a whole handful of different cultures, landscapes and sights.

IMG_1754.JPG

Picking the destinations

It might seem like this list of places has been pulled out of a hat, it’s so random. Actually, that wouldn’t be far from the truth. This trip took quite a while to plan, and went through several completely different itineraries to get to where it is now. In the end, it really came down to working out the cheapest option around a couple of conditions.

  1. We had to start in England
  2. We had to end in New York
  3. Amsterdam was a high priority (and coincidently the cheapest European city to fly to New York from)
  4. It had to be across June/July

With that information, I used Skyscanner to search for cheap combinations of flights to fill up our time gap between England and Amsterdam. Working forwards from the UK, there seemed to be several options, one of which was Greece, and working backwards from Amsterdam it seemed Prague was crazily cheap. It all kind of came together when I discovered Poland was one of the cheapest places to fly to from Athens and the cheapest place to fly from to Prague. That was it. Itinerary put together.

How much were the flights?

In total? I think I’ve paid around £500 for the six flights, including the two across the Atlantic. So that’s pretty great I’d say. Travelling doesn’t really have to be expensive if you’ve got flexibility on your side. If you’re happy to go to a whole range of different places, and have time to play about with your dates, then the flights don’t have to stack up into the £1000s.

For me, June is about more than just adventure; it’s about letting go, having fun and getting away from my hometown for a little bit. It’s time to reconnect with the carefree part of me that thrives on new experiences, and gets energy from doing rather than resting.


If you enjoyed this post, you might like:

How To Make Friends as a Young Solo Female Traveller


Come say hi:

Twitter (@alysjournals)

Instagram (@alysjournals)

Bloglovin’

All enquiries: alysjournals@gmail.com

 

The Comfort Zone Challenge ft. Hello Bexa

When I first started blogging, Bexa from Hello Bexa was one of the first people who actively encouraged me and made me feel less intimidated by the whole putting-your-life-on-the-internet thing. We’ve connected over a lot of things: from our adventures abroad and our journalling processes, to studying with the Open University, just to name a few. Bexa writes with a lot of passion about travel and creativity and always takes perfectly arranged photos for her posts. I honestly don’t know how she does it.

This is why, when I started looking for bloggers to collab with, I directly emailed Bexa. I knew there would be many areas we’d both be able to write about and that I’d be interested to hear her perspective on, whatever topic we chose. We decided to talk about comfort zones today, or more specifically, challenge ourselves to do something outside our comfort zones and writing about what we learnt from the experience.

Continue reading