Copenhagen

Hey everyone! So as most of you know from following me on social media (Instagram @minimintndblog and Facebook : Mini Mint ND) I was recently on a weekend trip to Copenhagen, Denmark. I had such a magical experience there that I want to share and urge you all to consider it for a possible Christmas trip¬†ūüėŹ
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Getting there
How often do we see airlines like are lingus and Ryanair having cheap seat sales and we are all too lazy to actually go and book something, even for a weekend! So I bit the bullet and booked a super cheap trip (‚ā¨50 return) To be fair I had a good excuse for choosing Copenhagen because one of my best friends was on Erasmus there so it was a no brainer. I drove up¬†Friday¬†and flew out¬†friday¬†evening at 4 then flew home¬†Sunday¬†night. It was a two night- two day quick trip but we managed to pack a lot in.
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Accomodation
I LIVE by¬†booking.com¬†for hotels and tripadvisor.com¬†whenever I’m organising any accomodation and most of the time they don’t steer me too far wrong (apart from that time in El Nido, but we said we wouldn’t talk about it again lol) Copenhagen is extremely expensive and it took me ages to find a hotel that was decent and clean aswell as being central without having to sell my kidneys to afford it. For all the students reading I’m going to really recommend Cabinn Express hotel. It is located about a 10-15 minute walk from the centre and all the attractions, we walked the whole city because everything is actually very close to each other. The hotel was spotless and the room had a cruise ship theme which we loved.
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What we did
  • Walked, literally everywhere. We explored the Christmas markets, the palace, Nyhavn, the Opera House¬†and several parks.
  • Tivoli. We got the unlimited ride pass which is about ‚ā¨50 but you can go on all the amusements you want, as many times as you want. Hands down one of the most magical places I have ever seen. You can see more on :¬†https://www.tivoli.dk/en/

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Food
  • Overfor in Fredericksburg. This was beside our hotel and we went when we landed at about 10 at night simply cause it was the only place open. It doubles as a late bar though it can be expensive.
  • Mazzolis in Tivoli. Unreal. The restaurant can get very busy in evening time so make sure to book a reservation to avoid disappointment. It’s set up like an old carousel and the food is spectacular.
  • TGI Fridays. It’s located on the Main Street.¬†Sunday¬†we were shook from the night before and we just wanted comfort food¬†ūüėÖ¬†we did a bit of shopping on the Main Street too such as Zara and H&M.

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To be quite honest, Copenhagen is very expensive. You would want to be bringing a lot of spending money with you and if you’re a student I wouldn’t recommend going for longer than two nights. We fit everything in and still managed to have time to stroll and just soak up the atmosphere. I don’t know what it would be like in summer but as a winter weekend getaway I would 100% recommend for Tivoli alone.
Mini Mint xx

Vietnam: Halong Bay & Hanoi

About Vietnam

Vietnam is a southeast Asian country on the South China Sea known for its bustling cities, picturesque beaches and vivid history. Hanoi is the capital city and at its heart is the old quarter where the narrow streets are roughly arranged by trade amongst the french colonial architecture. Halong bay in northeast Vietnam is known for its emerald waters and thousands of towering limestone islands topped by rain forests. It was designated a World Heritage Site in 1994.

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Getting there

You can fly from Dublin to Hanoi however we flew from Manila which was only a 3 hour flight. When we got to Hanoi we had organised a car to drive us straight to Halong Bay. We arrived at 5 am and absolutely fell into the bed in our hotel. We stayed in Halong Bay for 3 nights and got the same car back to Hanoi where we stayed for 3 nights before flying home.

 

Accommodation

Halong Bay is absolutely filled to the brim with hotels however there’s not much else there in the the city itself. Looking back, I would recommend anyone to just go down to do the boat tour and then leave again. We stayed in the Halong Palace Hotel and it was fab but the restaurants were expensive inside the hotel and there is not much around in Halong itself. We stayed a night on the Castaway boat tour which was great craic. Then in Hanoi we stayed in the Splendid Boutique Hotel in the old quarter it was very small but clean and in the perfect location.

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Halong Palace Hotel

What we did

  • The Halong Bay Castaway tour. We did the two day one night trip and to be honest it was enough. It includes kayaking and free alcohol so what’s not to love?
  • Visit Ho√†n Ki√™m Lake and Ngoc Son in Hanoi.
  • Explore the Old Quater.
  • Visit the Dong Xuan Market.
  • Hoan Kiem Bia Hoi. This is the street bar scene in the old quater where you can sit and drink some of the cheapest beer in the world. A bottle will cost about 15 cent.
  • See the Long Bien bridge over the red river.

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Hoan Kiem Lake
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The red bridge at Hoan Kiem Lake

Food

Halong Bay:       Halong Palace Hotel
1958 restaurant
Café Nam Phong
Hon Gai restaurant
Hanoi:                 Hanoi Taco Bar
Marvellous hotel
Splendid boutique hotel
Giang Cafe (try the Vietnamese Egg Coffee)
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Egg Coffee
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Honestly, I wish we had more time in Vietnam to explore the rest of the country such as Sapa and Nha Trang but I guess that just means we will have to go back lol. It is such a beautiful country filled with an immense amount of culture and history so if you plan of travelling through Asia put Vietnam on your list!

Mini Mint x