Egypt – Um Al Donya –

Commonly known to all Arabs as Um AlDonya (mother of the world) is one of the oldest civilizations that is Egypt.

 

Khan AlKhalili market in Cairo

Khan AlKhalili market in Cairo

 

I visited Egypt last summer for the first time in my life. Some countries don’t need any introduction and Egypt is definitely one of them. I grew up highly influenced by Egyptian culture. Egyptian TV and cinema was and in a sense still is dominating the entertainment scene in the middle east. Egyptian dialect is familiar to our ears. In fact it actually unites Arabs.

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Posted in Egypt, Middle East Tagged , , , |

Moscow through my iPhone

It was a day in history. Thats how the pilot greeted us, passengers onboard Gulf Air’s first flight to Moscow.
October 28th 2014, was indeed a historical day for Gulf Air and to me personally.

 

I was invited to board the first flight to Moscow for a media familiarization trip sponsored by Gulf Air. It was such an honor to be among that trip. I was finally getting recognized as a travel photography blogger and social media influencer. Plus I get to travel to an exciting place like Moscow.

After attending the official inauguration ceremony it was boarding time.

And it's official boarding @gulfair first flight to #moscow 😍🇷🇺 #موسكو #طيران_الخليج #gulfair

A photo posted by Rasha Yousif رشا يوسف (@rshrsho) on

 

5 hours later we were already in Moscow.

Hello Moscow 🇷🇺 #rashavsibnbattutah #RshRussia #rshMoscow #gulfair

A photo posted by Rasha Yousif رشا يوسف (@rshrsho) on

 

The number of media lineup and photographers was overwhelming. Many plane spotters seemed to be waiting for the arrival of the flight.

 

It was cold really cold ! But I loved it.

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Posted in iPhoneography, Russia Tagged , , , , |

Bosnia – Heaven on earth

An unexpected and unplanned trip turned to one of my favorite travel adventures of the year. I was invited to visit Bosnia and Croatia by Velvet life, a highly personalized luxury travel boutique based in Bosnia.

Yellow cabi

There are a number of airlines that fly to Bosnia for example FlyDubai, Pegasus Airlines and Turkish Airlines. I travelled with Turkish Airlines as it had the shortest transit time. The flight from Bahrain to Istanbul was delayed for an unknown reason. The captain didn’t even apologize or mention the delay which I thought was rude. I was nervous because I knew I had a short layover till my next flight. When we arrived I had less than 30 minutes to pass the security check and locate my gate. I started running and reached the gate on final call. I made it but sadly my bag didn’t make it to the flight. Fortunately there were another flight to Sarajevo that day my bag arrived later. I reached Sarajevo around 8 am. I was greeted by Velvet Life’s representative Selma. I stayed at Radon Plaza hotel which was very close to the airport. The hotel was good, the staff were nice and the room and toilet were spacious. The breakfast buffet was basic (not bad but nothing special) but I did enjoy the restaurant’s menu at night. I actually had dinner there most nights. The view was just amazing.

Bascarsija market

Bascarsija market

After checking-in my room and resting for a little while. We were off for a quick tour in Sarajevo’s old town market called Bascarsija. The Bascarsija market is a lovely pedestrian area full of traditional cafes and souvenir shops.

kebab

Bosnian Kebab

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Posted in Bosnia, Europe Tagged , , |

First day in Lisbon

I recently came back from an amazing trip to Portugal and Andalusia. The trip was originally planned to start in Porto but I had to cut Porto when I decided to go to Djibouti. I had less than a day to recover from from Djibouti trip only to return to the airport for the next adventure. I flew from Bahrain to Paris with Gulf Air and then boarded France Air for the next flight Paris/Lisbon. I was physically exhausted and drained emotionally after the Djibouti experience. I needed to quickly snap-out-of-it and Lisbon was the perfect place to do the job.

 

A bit of coffee to wake up. Laduree in Paris's Charles de Gaulle Airport

A bit of coffee to wake up. Laduree in Paris’s Charles de Gaulle Airport

I spent 3 “short” days in Lisbon but it was enough to make me fall in-love with the city. I was pleasantly surprised by everything in Portugal. The culture, the music, the vibe, the colors and oh did I mention the food!

 

Lisbon

Everything was just wonderful. The only thing that was kind of annoying was how crowded it was since I travelled on labor day holiday.

I’m loyal to Accor hotels (loyal to my points!) so I booked to stay in Novotel Lisboa. I was travelling on a budget so I used my points to book for my stay in Lisbon. I ended up paying around Euro 50 for my whole stay!

The location was a bit far from the local attractions but not too far from the airport. It was actually at the heart of the financial district. There was also a beautiful big mosque near the hotel. The good thing about Portugal is that it is relatively cheap. I cabbed almost everywhere.

Where do we begin ? Where do I begin? How do I explore this city?

I asked myself this when I checked in the hotel. Then I decided to see the city best at sunset. I googled “Best sunset views in Lisbon” and then I headed to Miradouro de Santa Luzia. The panoramic view of Lisbon and the sea were just stunning.

 

Panoramic view of Lisbon

Panoramic view of Lisbon

 

After watching the sunset I went to one of the nearby cafes for dinner. That was how I started and ended my first day in Lisbon. I have a lot to share. This was only a snippet of my trip. I’ll be sharing more soon.

To stay updated with my trips follow me on Instagram @rshrsho

Posted in Europe, Lisbon, Portugal Tagged , , , |

Meat Co.

Regardless of how many new steak houses opening up in Bahrain, I don’t think any of them stand a chance to take over Meat co’s place as the most popular destination for meat lovers in the island.

Classic Steak

Classic Steak

I visited The Meat company (Meat Co.) with my friend Reem for dinner last Monday. It was good to see the place so lively filled with people enjoying their night on a weekday. It was a good reminder to me that people actually do go out after long office hours!

The Meat Co is a South African Steak House under the Food Fund International brand of restaurants. It has been serving the finest steaks in the country since it originally opened in 2007.
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Posted in Bahrain, Middle East Tagged , , , , |

Have I told you about my trip to Sudan

It slipped my mind that I didn’t blog about my trip to Sudan earlier this year. Not in a million years I would have thought that I’ll spend new year’s eve listening to fireworks in Sudan!

 

sudan

Bahrain Jewelry in Sudan

 

The trip itself was very different from any of my previous trips. The country and the people are very unique.
I spent around a week in Khartoum in addition to Omdurman and other towns. I stayed in a small boutique hotel which had the best rating at trip advisor. Acropole hotel is owned by a Greek family who migrated to Sudan years ago and is now run by the 3 brothers and their wives and kids. I read many reviews about the hotel online and everyone was recommending it for the best customer service. I was really impressed by how caring the Greek family are to the guests.  I was really happy and felt very safe at the hotel. They really go out of their way to ensure the guests are safe and well taken care of. They also arranged to get a photography permit for me. Overall my stay at the hotel was very comfortable and friendly.

Here are some of my iPhone photos that I took during the trip

Posted in Africa, iPhoneography, Sudan Tagged , , , , , |

100 hours in Djibouti

I just returned from an eye opening trip to Djibouti. I was invited by Bahraini youth society Ayadi Relief as a guest in their charity trip to Djibouti. The trip’ targets were: involving the youth in humanitarian and relief work, raising awareness about the Horn of Africa and the importance of relief and development projects. Some of the activities during the trip included distributing food aid to vulnerable villages, opening the water wells that were part of the World Water Day campaign held last year and building a playground for Ali Sabeeh school from recycled materials.

Though I’ve been to less privileged countries but I have never seen anything like Djibouti. The villages scattered in the desert are really cut from the rest of civilization. The volcanic nature of land makes the hear unbearable. The country lacks natural resources and is suffering from draught for the past couple of years.

selfie

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Posted in Africa, Djibouti Tagged , , , , |

Localppl

Hello people!

I have recently started a collaboration with Localppl to offer cultural tours in Muharraq. I’ve introduced my very popular Muharraq Souq tour. In this tour I will share some of my favorite spots at the souq. Hopefully I will have more tours soon.

rasha muharraq

 

Do let me know what you would like to see in the future. Feedback is highly appreciated.

Book a tour here

 

Posted in Bahrain, Discover Bahrain Tagged , , , |

973 flowers

We finally have a new online service available in Bahrain for online shopping of chocolates, gifts and flowers.

973flower

973flowers is a website that gathers medium to high-end florists, chocolatiers, bakeries and gift shops in Bahrain.

973flower-2

The whole process took only few minutes. I have to admit it took me more time to decide which flower bouquets to choose more than the whole ordering process. I really love lilies so I chose lilies on the wood from Fleur.

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Posted in Bahrain Tagged |

Rice Bowl – Brunch review

At first I wasn’t sure how I would feel about having traditional breakfast at Rice Bowl restaurant. But then I was pleasantly surprised by the experience.

rice bowl city center

Rice Bowl started purely Asian and then they introduced a new menu that includes Mediterranean and Bahraini breakfast. We were three hungry girls so we ordered Um Fadi tray that includes eggs, labneh, humus, foul and falafel. We also added Saaj Qaimer with honey, samboosa, Mihyawa bread and balaleet. Everything was really good. The labneh was fresh, miyhawa bread was crispy and the balaleet was  perfectly sweetened.

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Posted in Bahrain, Bahrain restaurants Tagged , , , |

Updated website

I just published two photography sets to my website. Huna Falasteen (Palestine) and AlQuds (Jerusalem).

 

AlQuds

Posted in Random Tagged , |