Lions and Tigers and Dragons, Oh My!

Despite living in the UK for nearly 20 years, there are still large swathes of the country I haven’t seen. I’ve been up to the Orkney Islands at the tip of Scotland but have never properly visited Cornwall. I attended a wedding in Norwich once, but much of the east coast—Essex, Kent, Sussex—remains an absolute mystery. Trips to London must… View Post

In Review

The past few weeks have seen me revisit some of my favourite stomping grounds, so this blog post is less about exploring new sites and more about the enjoyment of reconnecting with places you know well. Magical. Enchanting. Quirky. These words were used by a friend to describe her first visit to the Cotswold Sculpture Park, and she is spot… View Post

Sacre Bleu!

This French expression of surprise or dismay seemed fitting when I realised it has been well over a year since I last shared a new blog post. It’s not due to a lack of travelling or a lack of desire: I have half-written articles and random paragraphs stashed all over my hard drive, as well as a mega-outline for last… View Post

How to Travel Safely in a Pandemic

I’m not going to lie to you—I miss travelling. Whether it’s a day spent exploring a National Trust property or a city break in London or a long weekend getting away from it all in the beautiful countryside, I miss experiencing new sights and sounds. Everything else that’s mentioned in my tagline? I’ve managed to find ways of catering to… View Post

MissElaineous and the Very Proper Adventure

The M4 is a British motorway that snakes its way across the south of the country, starting in London and passing near a number of major towns and cities before petering out just past Swansea. Chippenham is one of those towns in the middle, located just a few miles south of this main artery that ferries people east and west… View Post

A Walk on the Wild Side (Plus Sheep)

There are a few things you might expect to see when you go for a walk in the British countryside: Sheep? Most likely. Cows? Probable, especially in the area around Barbury Castle. Horses? Always a possibility. Intriguing architecture? Chances are good. Stunning landscapes? Guaranteed. But an elephant? Or a herd of zebra? These slightly more exotic creatures do not instantly… View Post

Down the Rabbit Hole

I found my first decorated rock in Beer, Devon a few years ago. Since then, I’ve enjoyed following the community of people who paint and hide stones for others to find, marvelling at the creativity and skill of many of the artists who give away their work. Other pieces are made by children, a way to keep them occupied on a… View Post

Marlborough Magic

Travelling is often synonymous with getting away from it all or venturing to the other side of the planet to see the new, the unfamiliar, or the exotic. However, I would also argue that some of the most eye-opening travel experiences can happen practically in our own backyards when we are willing to look at the familiar in a new… View Post


St. Ignatius of Loyola said, “Give me the child for the first seven years and I will give you the man.” Career coaches use the question “What were your three favourite activities as a child?” to help people focus on finding a job that sparks the same joy as a child at play. The impact of these formative years before… View Post


“We are addicted to busy-ness,” Olivia said as I focused on contorting my body to match the yoga pose she demonstrated. She wasn’t wrong. Indeed, it was the very reason that MrElaineous and I found ourselves at a yoga and meditation retreat in the Welsh countryside. When I was in the grips of burnout several years ago, we made the… View Post


Outside of the UK, the word “Glastonbury” is synonymous with music and mud. Within the UK, the definition is pretty similar, with the annual(ish) music festival regularly dominating headlines. Tickets for the 50th anniversary in 2020 recently sold out in under forty minutes, and even I took the time to brainstorm how litter could be reduced at future festivals after… View Post


Outside of the UK, the term “bank holiday” is likely to be met with a puzzled expression. Is it a day to celebrate banks? Or a day that they’re closed? Or something completely different? After all, the UK is the country that also gave the world Boxing Day, which has nothing to do with pugilistic endeavours! The reality is the… View Post


I have a confession to make. Way back at the turn of the century (i.e. the year 2000), I watched the first series of the American television show Survivor. Little did I know then, but this one programme would give rise to an entirely new genre: reality TV. For me, that one series of Survivor was enough, and I didn’t… View Post


I first visited Europe when I was fourteen. This was well before digital cameras were common and full eons before I could even imagine having a camera, phone, and computer combo that fit in my pocket. I borrowed my father’s basic 35mm camera for the trip and, for those who don’t remember a time before digital, that meant I was… View Post


I consider Bath a city I know well: my PhD research focused on the Roman Baths; when MrElaineous was just known as Jon, we went on countless dates to the local cinema and Theatre Royal; our first year(ish) of marriage was spent living near Sydney Gardens. So I tend not to play the tourist when visiting, typically going from A to… View Post


Great Britain is composed of three nations: England, Wales, and Scotland. The United Kingdom adds Northern Ireland to the mix, and hence the official name of the country is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The point of mentioning this terminology is that both Scotland and Northern Ireland are parts of the UK that are some distance… View Post


People often talk about love at first sight, whether it’s meeting that special someone to spend your life with or buying a house. But what about the opposite? Because that was my reaction to Sheffield when I first encountered this northern city almost fifteen years ago. I was on a flying visit to find a place to situate one of… View Post


The cliché that lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place is patently false: after all, lightning rods are designed specifically for the task! But when it comes to magical moments, there is often a kernel of truth in the statement. How often have you gone somewhere and had a fantastic time—maybe it was an incredibly delicious meal at a… View Post


Gallons of ink, both real and virtual, have been spilled extolling the virtues of travel, with quite a few pints by yours truly. Whether described as expanding one’s horizons, sampling new experiences and cultures, or simply part of shaking up a daily routine, it can’t be denied that going to new places can introduce you to things you never imagined… View Post
MissElaineous Travel Blog: Escape, Explore, Discover, Enjoy