5 Favorite Hipster Spots To Travel To

PicMonkey Hipster Collage

Being born and raised in the Northwestern United States, specifically the Seattle region means I’m no stranger to the word hipster. In fact, I’d say that word and I are long lasting friends. We’ve been through a lot together, including strange haircuts, overly artistic and moody experiments and a nose piercing and tattoo my mom would rather I didn’t talk about. That being said, when I travel I generally look for the hipster vibe in my days there. At first it wasn’t on purpose, then I tried NOT to find those little places that you’ve probably never heard of. But finally I faced it – I am a hipster, and I am okay with that. Maybe you are too – maybe we all are – but regardless, here are some of my favorite hole-in-the-wall-small-time-you’ve-probably-never-heard-of-them stops.

1. Stock Coffee Shop: Amsterdam, The Netherlands


This coffee shop is actually connected with the adjoining hotel and I absolutely fell in love with it during my time in Amsterdam. It’s not hard to see why! The staff was so incredibly nice, the food was amazing and even the tea was incredible. I was surprised how empty it was when I was there, but my hipster soul was glad of it. It’s no wonder I visited four times in two days!

2. Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop: Galway, Ireland



Ok, so this is actually a pretty popular stop spot in Galway, BUT if you walk inside you’ll understand why it’s added to my list. The whole enormous space is stacked top to bottom with vintage books (and new!) and it has that “curl up and never leave” vibe that makes me want to grab my hipster glasses and take some epic Instagram photos – filtered to the highest degree possible.

3. Art Store:: Glasgow, Scotland

ArtStoreQueenStreet3_zpsdce05b50When in doubt, name your store exactly what it is. It’s a kind of ironic beauty that you really can’t compare. At this store I bought a 2″ x2″ canvas which I still haven’t painted anything on it, but I kind of love that I could buy canvases that were small enough to fit in my palm. The location of this store is also pretty hipster awesome because it’s right across the street from the Duke Of Wellington statue, which can often be found sporting his crown of a hot orange traffic cone. 



4.   Dachkammer : Berlin, Germany



Like being surrounded by a log cabin interior without leaving the busy city? Well, this is the spot for you! Not only was it dark, poetic and all lit up with candles and dimmed lights, but it was filled with a kind of 1920’s prohibition era spirit. Whether you’re looking for a place to read moody things, or to go for a late night drink (WARNING: No WiFi here – way too mainstream), this is definitely a top spot I love.

5. Cupan Tae: Galway, Ireland


6151880684_32c576057aFor those days when marathoning Downton Abbey just isn’t enough, you have Cupan Tae to pull you through. Not only is this one of the cutest tea shops I’ve ever been in (or should I say “Tae shops”?) but the staff who works here is just absolutely the nicest. Not only did they charge my phone (I brought the wrong charger for Ireland) but they were attentive and the tea was sublime. A must stop shop for anyone looking for a delicious bite to eat, or a cup of tea to keep you going.

Honestly, this is all I think of when I say the words “Cup” and “Tea.”

Favorite Pictures From Berlin

The last couple of days in Berlin were such a whirlwind that I didn’t have time to write, but basically just know that I had an amazing time getting to see the city, go to museums, eating bratwursts and generally falling in love with Germany. I was so happy to be in such an amazing artistic city and I honestly would have no problem moving to Berlin. But one adventure at a time, right?! Here are some of my favorite pictures from the trip. Note to self: Bring the long lens next time. Enjoy!DSC_0267 DSC_0294 DSC_0314 DSC_0225 DSC_0200 DSC_0189 DSC_0186 DSC_0184 DSC_0151 DSC_0117 DSC_0110 DSC_0102

Berlin: Day 3


I absolutely love football. No, not American. There is no tackling involved (at least not by the rules of the game). I mean the original football. You know, the one where you use your feet.

The last couple of years have been a revolutionary time for me. A lot changed, and a lot of things I had loved, but had suppressed in order to please other people, finally were allowed to flourish. Football was one of them.

Growing up I wasn’t allowed to play or really even watch sports, so I’m not a diehard fan; the culture is just not something I grew up with. But even as a kid I insisted on always playing “soccer” at recess. Yes, I loved the game, but I’d be lying if I didn’t also say I loved that I was taller than most of the kids my age, and could run like a horse (then everyone got their damn growth spurts). Oh, and I’m actually totally OK with the parental decision to keep me out of sports as a kid. It just wasn’t something we did, and my life has been none the worst for it.

When I walk into a stadium and know there’s about to be a football game, I get the dumbest grin on my face. I bounce my legs up and down to the bass of the home team entry music, and my heart starts beating faster as I balance on the edge of my seat; all of these things occur completely subconsciously. But today, for the first time, I noticed them; and I thought, “Damn. You’d think I was in love or something.” And then I realized: I am.

Like I said, mine is a bit of a blind love, I don’t have favorite teams (although some loyalties – LETS GO SOUNDERS!) and I don’t know the names of every player and every statistic. If I’m perfectly honest, most of the time, I don’t care who wins – as long as it’s a good game. And today – today was a GOOD game.

If you follow football (or are a living, breathing human) you probably know that this year was the World Cup. And the victor, with seemingly little effort, was the German team.

Going to a European football match had already been on my bucket list for a while before Germany’s street cred went up exponentially so, needless to say, when I found out there was a Berlin v. Hamburg game happening today, I jumped (literally)at the opportunity.

But I had no idea how great it would actually be. Those moments when the home team made 1-2-3 goals made that game easily chart on the list of ‘Best events of my life’. If you’ve ever been to a German football match, you’ll know why. Watching felt like an honor.
Sitting amongst those fans – from young to old – I realized these people weren’t just half consciously at a game, they were living as part of a 90 minute event! And even though it seems like a clean defeat (at 3-0 favoring the home team), the game was neck to neck until the end.

Maybe it was all of the German blood stirring, or maybe it was just loving the game, but over the course of 90 minutes the people who walked into that stadium as strangers, left as friends. We sang together, drank out of plastic beer steins, chanted the whole 90 minutes and half froze in the frigid weather. But we laughed the whole packed out metro ride afterward, even though we couldn’t move because of overcrowding. It didn’t matter that some of us were speaking English and the rest German. We had witnessed a victory, and we left that field waving flags and carrying ourselves just a little bit taller because of it.

I honestly feel so honored, happy and moved that I got to experience the game today. It was the kind of thing that makes you feel like your life has been changed, even though you’ve only been sitting in a chair for an hour and a half. All I can say is: my heart is so full.



Berlin Day 2


Every time I travel I’m reminded of the importance of artists. While being an artist can feel menial, sometimes, seeing the political and historical importance of artists always amazes me.

Yesterday was one of these moments. Walking down the East Side Exhibit of the Berlin wall took my breath away. They say a picture is worth a million words, and I think that’s the case, even beyond photographs. If a photograph is worth a million words, then a painting can be worth so much more. Paintings show the heartbeat of not only the circumstances, emotions and political feelings of a society, but the heart and soul of its creator. Art is powerful. And that’s a lesson I feel like I have to be constantly reminded of. Luckily, Berlin is the perfect place for that reminder.

Yesterday was a true “German” experience day. I walked the wall, and then went over to Museum island, which is exactly what it sounds like – an island full of museums. The structures themselves were amazing. But I didn’t go in any of them BECAUSE I met this awesome tour guide who told me he was going to be doing a free walking tour five minutes from then. I asked him how long it was: Three hours. The topic? The Third Reich.

Since I’m an advocate for taking the experiences that are put in front of you, I decided to go and it was AMAZING. Things I would have just walked past normally were explained and there were so many stories. I got to see where Nazi offices were, where Hitler lived, where he died, explore the former Jewish quarter, and see the absolutely beautiful Berlin synagogue. I went to the Holocaust memorial, the parliament building, the Brandenburg Gate and ate a German Bratwurst – which was, of course, amazing.

But then the best thing happened: my tour guide told me there was a football match going on in The Olympian stadium. As in the the stadium Hitler had built for the ’36 Olympics. The ones Jesse Owens won gold at. OK, so I’m geeking out a bit.

So today, of course, I’m going to a football game! And, for those of you I’m the US, that means: I’m going to a soccer game! I’m so excited, it’s hard to explain. After Germany won the World Cup, I can’t even believe I get to go to a game in the same country.
And speaking of that, I have to go! Here are some pictures from my adventures so far! Cheers!







Berlin, Germany

IMG_7910.JPG If you want to travel the world, you first have to learn how to laugh at yourself. Like yesterday, when I was running through the Paris airport with nothing on my feet except socks and my flower print scarf trailing behind me, I couldn’t help but giggle. All of those French business people in their suits and there I was, half slipping half running in between them and their designer carry on luggage.

Needless to say, this was not a planned occurrence.

This was the first time I’ve ever run through an airport, and the first time it was in my socks. But desperate times, right? The circumstances went something along these lines:

* 9:45 I leave my house *Paris transit takes FOREVER to get me to the airport.

*11:47: I arrive * Plane starts boarding at 12:05. I run through security, but get stopped for my bag to be weighed *I am told I have to check it because its 2kg over the weight limit *I remember very quickly how to argue with people in French

*11:55: I’m standing in the check baggage line praying a miracle happens – I see a giant sign that says “Boarding will close 15 minutes before takeoff” my flight is scheduled for 12:30

*12:05 I run back to security after checking my bag *I get behind a family who has apparently never been through airport security before

*12:13 I get through security after my pat down which seems to be necessary in every country I travel to (except Ireland – love those lads and ladies) *While my stuff is going through the machine I run to the scanner and check my gate, run back and grab my stuff

*12:17 I decide lacing up my vintage boots is a damn waste of time * I run like it’s the World Cup finals and my life and the pride of my country depends on it

*12:20 I get to my gate and the stewardess holds the bus that’s about to drive away while she tells me to put on my damn shoes * I jump on the bus, get on the plane and then its delayed 15 minutes. Awesome.

What matters, of course, is that I actually made that plane. And that now I’m in Berlin!

The “getting here” part wasn’t quite as I had imagined it, but I absolutely love the city now that I’m here. For all of you guys who told me to come to Berlin because I would love it : you were right! While living in France had really made me forget a lot of societal things I love and feel comfortable around, being in Berlin immediately felt like home.

Obviously Seattle still has my heart, but this is a close second. Yesterday was super fun because I’m Couchsurfing (of course!) And my host wanted to take me out to meet a Couchsurfing buddy of hers, who was Australian. The three of us then went and got Indian food (AHHHHH!) and then we went to the coolest bar (no carding required -gotta love Europe) that was a mixture of Speak Easy, log cabin and Anthropologie.

Basically heaven.

The best part, though, since I don’t drink alcohol, was the entire section of the menu with virgin drinks. And no weird looks when we ordered them. Total win. It was so much fun being in a place where so many languages and cultures coincide, again. And I love being able to stay with someone who has lived in Berlin their whole life.

There’s so much history in this city and, even though its a painful one, I think you can tell that it’s made the people who live here now, hungry to build this city into something great. And I love that. Here’s to a week full of beautiful memories!

Random things I love about Berlin so far: – Car2go -Uber -Tons of Starbucks – I love hearing German spoken ❤️ – Most things being in German and English -Everyone knowing English – THE PEOPLE ARE SO NICE -Art culture – Cheap cheap prices – English movie theaters