My 5 Biggest Interrailing Regrets

When you get back from travelling, no matter how long you went for, you always get those holiday blues.

After telling your stories to listening ears, uploading hundreds of photos and consistantly wishing you were back there you start to think about how you could’ve done things differently.

I’ve been home now for 3 months, and I still keep wishing I had done a few things differently!

Here are the 5 things I wish I’d done differently that myself, and you too, can learn from;

1. I wish I’d done more

I’m sure this must be a common thing for people to think, but I really feel like I should’ve pushed it a bit more. We did plenty but I was still left yearning for more. Before I left I spent days making lists of everything I wanted to do, and I just feel like – considering we were away for an entire month – we didn’t actually use the time to the best of our ability.


2. I wish I’d taken my DSLR

Technology has come so far and my iPhone and little compact camera didn’t do too badly. BUT my Canon 5D MIII is my precious little baby and I wish I took it with me because the photos would’ve been so much better and I probably would’ve put a little bit more effort in too. It would just mean I would need to sort out insurance and take more precaution.

Next time it’s coming with me, for sure!

3. I wish I’d tried more food!

This holiday was amazing for my ‘fussiness‘, and I’ll write another post about the foods that I did try. However, I wish I had got a bit adventurous with the cusine and tried even more than what I did.

I am proud to say that I did try something traditional from every country that we went to except from Poland because I wasn’t very well and didn’t trust their delicacies in my stomach! I just wanted to try even more – and give up the English food!

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Last night's dinner 😍😍

A post shared by May Simpson (@blondebackpackr) on


4. I wish I’d learnt more languages

Language barriers were the hardest thing we came across in some countries and our typical English niavity meant that we thought we’d be okay and we really wasn’t! I tried to learn the basics through Duo Lingo but it was actually a lot harder than I thought – it’s impossible to learn the basics of 10 languages in a month! I need more time & practise!

5. I’d like to go solo…

This one isn’t so much of an ‘I wish’ as an, ‘I want too’, because Hollie is my partner in crime.

Hollie is my best friend and has been for 9 years – but our personalities are very different and I’m slightly more outgoing and willing to try everything. She joined in with everything we did do, but I still feel like I would’ve done more on my own because I wouldn’t have to stop myself out of guilt.

I think this is more a case of me wanting to be independant and know that I can do it more than anything!


Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely loved our holiday and I would most definitely go with Hollie again, I’d just like the opportunity to do it alone too.

My list isn’t a list of negative moans – it’s things I’d probably change next time and learn from; we all know travelling is an experience and a life lesson!

What are the things you learnt from and would change while travelling?

Love, May x


What is ‘Travelling’?

I’ve had a lot of debates with people recently on the topic of ‘travelling’ and it seems as though everyone has mixed feelings.

When I told a regular at work that I was going travelling and he asked me where, he wasn’t too thrilled with my response. “Europe!? That’s not very good travelling… that’s rubbish! Why don’t you go to Thailand or something like that?”

Yeah, okay then. Thanks for that, mate. Don’t see you going anywhere but the pub for the rest of your boring life but okay, adventure is out there for the rest of us!

So here I am, sitting at my little blog, reading through post after post about where people have visited, reading tweets, seeing instagram pictures and it made me think… what do people actually percieve as travelling.

Personally, I want to see the world and I don’t care how I do it, I just want to explore with the people I love being with and meet new people along the way. Whether that means continuously visiting various countries without returning home for a year or visiting everywhere individually with different people at different times, it really doesn’t matter. So why should it matter to anyone else?

travel def

The definition of travelling comes in a very simple form: to make a journey, typically of some length.

There is no mention of time scale, or who with, or in which form you travel; it’s just the fact that you are making a journey to another location. And in those words, I like the idea of travelling as it can be so simple, so easy and appeal to a lot more people. 

Fancy a week in Rome? Go for it! Fancy a long weekend in Iceland, Hell yeah! 3 weeks in the Maldives – yes please! 7 months in Thailand?! Woo! You’re still seeing the world. Each country is individual and there’s so much to find, see and do… Make sure you get out there, whichever way you choose.

My point of this post is to say, don’t let someone tell you what you should be doing or how you should be seeing the world.

Travelling is what you make of it!

Most importantly, you have to enjoy it! And you sure as hell will… much more than the grumpy old man making comments about other people adventures whilst sitting down the pub!


What do you all think?

How do you see ‘travelling’?


Have a great day, backpackers!

Love, May x


Hail and Rain; London in Spring

London is a huge and very popular city destination for many aspiring traveller’s and I’m lucky enough to live only 30 minutes away from it by train… and stupidly I never make the most of it!

As one of my University projects I stepped outside my comfort zone within photography  and used a La Sardina Lomography Camera and rolls of film to create a book on London; both Urban and Rural in Spring. My work has always been very precise and controlled; it was fun to let loose and take quick, spur-of-the-moment photographs!

I named it ‘Hail and Rain‘, which is cockney rhyming slang for train – and also, unfortunately, the usual weather circumstances for London…

If you’re planning on visiting, embrace it!

Wear that yellow mac, splash around in your red wellies and definitely, most definitely, bring an umbrella!

















[You can see more of my photography and film work here; Photography MS]

Personally, my favourite parts of London are the parks – Hyde Park is lovely in general, St. James’ Park has lots of wildlife, Richmond Park is great for deer… there are plenty!

I also love Camden, it’s so quirky and you can find some amazing things there!


What are you favourite parts of London?


Love, May x



As a new backpacker to the travelling scene and with less than 2 months until I leave, I am constantly online looking to find things in various countries that I had no idea existed. I’m not talking about the classic sight-seeing activities such as mountains and cathedrals that you find on almost every travel site, I’m talking about the really cool and original stuff you have a hard time reading about!

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Now I’ve found Mapiac

(and I’d probably go as far as to say it’s the best travel map I’ve found online.)

It shares the most hidden, beautiful and awesome places in Europe from abandoned buildings to amazing forests as well as a huge amount of activities to do in each country. It really has it all and will find you great places to visit no matter where you are!

Yes, it may need some more information and locations added to it, but it takes time to find and visit these places and create the collection for them. It is a website I see huge potential in developing positively in the near future.

It is also available for constant updating by the public; with the option to ‘add a hidden gem‘ you can submit an idea to the Mapiac Embassadors. I love this feature as it gives them the option to expand but also to control how, without ending up with classic tourist pins on their map and keeping away from spam. Perfect! With some of the hidden gems, it even offers you a ‘book now’ option!

Here are a few of my favourite finds, thanks to Mapiac;


Walk the fairytale bridge of Corvin Castle


The Corvin Castle is one of the biggest castles in Europe and the grounds are absolutely spectacular. It’s perfect to visit for the atmosphere and architecture.

Raft through 3 countries on the Tara river

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Water Rafting is something that I really want to do anyway, but through all three countries? that’s pretty amazing… Especially when it looks so beautiful.

Sleep underneath the stars at Attrap Reves


Well, in my eyes, this looks absolutely amazing! I am a massive astronomy lover; the stars, the moon, the planets. Anything that’s a million miles away… It all amazes me. What better way to see them than to spend the night in one of these cute little pods watching it all go by! I mean, it’s a bit romantic and sloppy, but it’s also really really cool.

Lead a pack of Huskies through Snowy Scenery


WHAT AN EXPERIENCE THAT WOULD BE. Thanks to Mapiac, this is now added onto my Travel Bucketlist. What a fantastic opportunity, I’m actually gutted I’m not going to visit Finland this summer, although, I don’t know if there’d be much snow? I’ll have to book for next winter! According to the website, it’s not actually that expensive either! I feel like 100 euros is reasonable!?

Dive to the underwater Museum at Cape Tarkhankut


Divers are attracted here because of the crystal clear waters and the ability to take amazing underwater photography. There is so much to explore when scuba diving; old shipwrecks, underwater museum, ancient weapons and coins…
You can also stay on the beach here, many local visitors like to set up tents for the night. 

So, that’s my favourite 5 locations at the moment on Mapiac, and I’m sure I could’ve even missed a few! I absolutely love this website and recommend it to anyone. I’d also recommend sending in your unique places to visit if you have any, it’s the perfect way to help out your fellow travellers. You can also apply to become a Mapiac Embassador, they might accept you if you’re lucky enough! I might even consider it myself in future…

Enjoy, and have a lovely day backpackers!

Love, May x



The Excitement is Real!

I got excited this morning as I got a knock at the door… THE INTERRAIL TICKETS ARE HERE! Really, they’re just pieces of paper in an envelope but they are very significant pieces of paper… They symbolise my next adventure!


On the lead up to my first ever backpacking trip around Europe almost everything is exciting me. The tickets arriving were one thing but even going to collect my first pair of prescription sunglasses from Specsavers was great – I’m not missing the sights!

Even buying a pair of flip flops is exciting, especially as I got them for 90p; perfect for the hostel bathrooms and the sea! I’m even excited to go Back Pack shopping!

On my previous post, Around the World in 30 Days, I have posted my route for the month (subject to change – of course!) The countries I am most looking forward to are Hungary, Czech Republic and Croatia.

In light of recent events in Brussels, people have asked if I am still visiting. The answer is yes. Of course. I’m a strong believer in not being afraid and unless anything is still going on in 2 months time, I don’t think we should cancel the trip ‘just in case‘. That’s no way to live.

Anyone else excited for an upcoming trip?

Got any Interrail tips to share!?

Have a great day, backpackers!

Love, May x

Around the World in 30 Days

Okay, so maybe it’s not quite the world – but to me it feels like it.

I’ve not done anything as adventurous as this yet, to be honest the furthest away I’ve been from home is to Zante with the girls last summer and I’ve been to a maximum of 10 countries in my whole 21 years of existence…

Looks like that’s all about to change; and I’ve never been more excited!

On May 15th 2016, exactly 59 days away, I will be off on my travels with my best friend Hollie and a month long Interrail ticket to visit 12 of the biggest cities in Europe.
There are so many sights for us to see, so much for us to do… so much sun to absorb!


First stop; Brussels… > Amsterdam > Berlin > Prague > Kraków > Budapest > Zagreb > Split > Vienna > Venice > Zürich … and, last but definitely not least, Paris.

The choice of route was extremely hard and took us almost 3 hours to figure out, cutting and adding out a great deal of countries we wished to visit. Although I guess this is just an excuse for more holidays and more adventure! Among the cities we scrapped were Rome, Athens, Bucharest, Lisbon, Podgorica and Bratislava.

To organise the route we used the ever-so-handy app, Interrail Planner. It comes free of charge and, although it needs a bit of tweaking, it’s absolutely perfect for figuring out where to go and which train leads where, how long it takes and if you have the possibility of catching the night train!

I’m super, super excited to go and super, super excited to keep updating this new blog with ideas and experiences throughout.

If anyone has any feedback on anything on my blog over time, please let me know – constructive criticism is always welcome!

Does anyone have any advice on Interrailing/Backpacking in general?

Have a lovely evening travellers!

Love, May x