Brussels, Belgium

October 21st-23rd // Brussels, Belgium

Day 1

Travel day! Being our smart selves, we booked 7am flights. This doesn’t sound horrible correct? WRONG! A 7am flights means getting to the airport at 5am since we had an international flight which means leaving to Heathrow at 4am. All in all, there was no sleep happening that night.

Even though we packed an hour before leaving and got absolutely no sleep, we made it to the airport on time and took an hour flight to Belgium. When we got in, we attempted to figure out public transportation but ended up just getting a taxi instead (we usually use Uber but in Brussels they don’t allow Uber to pick people up from the airport). We reached our Airbnb, unpacked, explored the penthouse, and then decided to grab some lunch. We looked around for some vegan options and ended up just getting some fries at a local bar. Sleep deprived and exhausted, we headed back to our Airbnb for a small nap.

When we woke up, we researched good restaurants in the area and found a sushi restaurant that we ended up trying and LOVING! (See my post, “Makisu” for more details). We walked around the streets of Brussels after then headed back home for a beautiful nights rest.

 

Day 2

We set out for a long, unexpected day. It first started with figuring out public transportation. After asking around, we bought day passes and used Google Maps to get us to our destination. After a couple train rides, we got to the local flee market.

 

We explored all the little shops and talked to the owners who seemed fascinated by our ascent and language. The next stop was getting some food. We had a beautiful walk on our way to the famous La Pain Quotidien (See my post “La Pain Quotidien” for more details).

 

After, we adventured to find some delicious Belgium chocolate. This involved seeing captivating buildings, street performers, and a boy who went down flights of stairs on a scooter and managed to not fall off.

 

Post scarfing down the best chocolate of our lives, we then found directions to a famous landmark in Brussels and also the oldest resident in the city.

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“Manneken Pis”

We then ended up finding the famous square of the town where we watched the sunset and enjoyed this moment in Belgium.

 

We then had one last thing to do: eat some fries! I have always through fries were from France because well, French Fries. BUT I learned that fries originated from Belgium! There are small cafes open late for those who are craving some delicious fries and we took advantage of this. We came. We saw. And we ate!

 

Overall, Belgium was an absolute dream. The architecture was stunning, the people were friendly, the food was delicious, and our airbnb had the best view of the city. Until next time!

 

Madrid, Spain

They say eating in Spain is difficult for vegans, however, we did a great job of finding amazing food from Madrid. Although it took some research and searching around, we managed to get by. Here are some photos from our eats in Madrid with  restaurant names and meal titles included. Enjoy!

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    Paella

This small outdoor restaurant is located in Plaza Mayor. There are several outdoor restaurants in this area that all serve the same meals at the same prices so pick a spot and eat up! This meal was completely vegan with carrots, red peppers, a lemon, lima beans, rice, and artichoke.

 

 

 

2. Cafeteria Los Jamonimos

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Gazpacho

 

Website: https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187514-d4778309-Reviews-Cafeteria_Los_Jeronimo-Madrid.html

 

 

 

 

3. La Encomidena

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Tacos

 

This all vegan restaurant has a plethora of options. These four tacos with soy, corn, tomatoes, guac and soy filled me right up! Something I found to be the coolest thing about this restaurant was that all the plates and most of the decoration was hand made with pottery.

Website: http://www.laencomienda.es

 

 

 

4. The Urban Bites

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Chocolate & Vanilla Donuts

 

Although you can’t tell by the photo, these donuts are mini and can be eaten in one bite. It’s always a good day when I can also find some vegan donuts!

Website: http://www.theurbanbits.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.  GramaBar 

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Arepa

 

A warm black bean arepa in Spain hit the spot.  We also ordered an appetizer of wedged potato fries but those were eaten up before a photo was taken!

 

Website: http://gramabar.com

 

 

 

 

6. Walk to Wok

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Custom Wok Bowl

Custom food is the best for vegans! I ordered brown rice as my base, with tofu, spinach, and mixed peppers with teriyaki sauce.

 

Website: https://www.woktowalk.com

 

 

 

7. Cafe Prado

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Raspberry Sorbet

Website: https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187514-d8445169-Reviews-Cafe_Prado-Madrid.html

 

8. Cafe & Tapas

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Wok

 

Noodles, mushrooms, red peppers, sesame seeds, and a delicious teriyaki sauce.

 

Website: http://cafeandtapas.com

 

 

 

 

 

9. Taco Bell

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Crunch Wrap, Fries, Chips, Salsa & Guac

 

 

Late nights mean taco bell in Spain. I was surprised when I ordered my Crunch Wrap (substitute the meat with beans, no cheese or sour cream) and it came out with some fries! I also ordered a side of chips, salsa, and guac.

 

Website: https://tacobell.es

 

 

 

10. Viva Chapata 

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Vegan Burger with Fries

 

Vegan burger, mexican style with cheese, guac, and corn paired with some yummy fries!

Website: https://www.facebook.com/vivachapataMadrid/

 

 

 

11. Chocolateria San Gines

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Chocolate Churros

 

Although this isn’t vegan, it is a must in Spain for others! This restaurant is the most well known in Madrid for chocolate churros so be sure to go here and get some famous desserts!

Website: https://chocolateriasangines.com

Another Five Hour Flight

August 15

Another Day. Another Adventure.

Spontaneous trips are what I live for. My girl Cait texted me saying that we’re going to Washington D.C. and whatever Cait says, go’s. I packed a bag and headed to Las Vegas where we would then board a plane the next day and take off for a five- hour flight. I made sure to download lots and lots of podcasts (This American Life being my go to as well as Ted Talks and On She Goes). Since Cait and I are avid travelers, we know exactly what to pack: ear phones, portable charger, snacks (and lots of them), sweater, a good book, notebook and pen, wallet, mints, toothbrush, tooth paste, and face wash. Also, for you spontaneous people, download the app “Hotels Tonight” for great prices on nice hotel rooms. This has saved us many times! I’ll stop boring you with travel tips and make a separate post about that in the future if you’re interested.

We arrived and then took an Uber to our hotel. After checking in, we ate some snacks for dinner and watched whatever movies we could find on our hotel television. The next morning we woke up, got ready, and headed into the city for a long and eventful day. We Ubered to the White House where we started our long walk and five minutes in, it started to rain. We ended up buying some cheap umbrellas and running to find some shelter and food. To be honest, we had no clue where we were going or what to see, so we grabbed a map and headed to where the most people where and the places with large stars next to them. We ended up in front of the Washington Memorial where I had flash backs to the recent Spider-Man movie and replayed the scene in my head. After asking random people to take photos of us jumping around in the rain, we picked up our heavy and tired feet and made our way to Lincoln. I have been dreaming of seeing his memorial and standing under the feet of this historical leader. I made sure to move everyone away from me and take a solo picture with Abe.

Cait and I began walking to the next place with a large star where we decided it was time to get an Uber back to our hotel and grab some dinner before seeing a National’s game. We ate dinner, put on our red-and-white gear, and began our five minute walk to the stadium. I have a new found addiction of going to baseball games. The lights, the loud crowd, the games in-between innings, and the vegan hot dogs.

I am always sad to leave. I love adventuring in new cities and there is always more I wish I could’ve done and more people I wish I met. But this trip was spontaneous and thrilling. Being in such a different city, a historical city, is something I suggest everyone do. We packed our bags, got on our very early flight, and headed back to Vegas. See you soon Washington. I’ll be back soon!