Author Archives: Danielle Aniceto

About Danielle Aniceto

Whether driving across Canada or living and working in countries throughout Europe, I am always ready for a life changing experience. Travelling to open my heart and mind to the world as it is, and as it could be. Sharing my experiences with anyone who owns the desire to feed the spirit of curiosity and adventure.

Home / Europe / Greece / Life Abroad| Tour Greece like a local

Life Abroad| Tour Greece like a local

Updated: November 13, 2016
By: Danielle Aniceto
Paros Hotel View

Paros, GR – HOtel View overlooking Paros from my hotel (Danielle Aniceto/Borderless Travels)

In my life, fortune has come to me in the form of good friends. One of which was born and raised in Athens, Greece.  It is through her that I have had the much-appreciated privilege to fall in love with the birthplace of western philosophy over and over again.

Having a local tour you around a new country is probably the only way to really get a uniquely local experience and perspective; and I would suggest it in every city or country that you have friends willing to show you around.

However, for those who are not lucky enough to know a Greek with an excellent taste in food and culture, I have made you a list of my favorite spots in Greece.  I became familiar with these places over the years and I hope you’ll get a chance to experience them too.  I’ve also made sure to give you the best time to visit them because, everywhere in Greece can feel like a tourist hot spot if you’re there during peak times.

In other words, this is a tourist’s guide to Greece from a local perspective, complimentary of an honorary local who spent her life exploring Greece’s wonders.

Athens

Athens, GR – The city of Athens, Greece overlooking the Acropolis, the highest point in a city of millions (Danielle Aniceto/Borderless Travels)

A for Athens

A must see cocktail bar with a rooftop patio and a spectacular view of the Parthenon at night. If you can find somewhere to sit, you will be able to spend the night sipping cocktails while admiring an awe inspiring piece of ancient history. Despite how busy it can get, it still has great service. Someone dropped a glass while I was there and accidentally cut my foot and one of the waiters actually cleaned and bandaged my foot on the spot, talk about customer service.

Location: Miaouli 2 – 4, Athens 10554, Greece

Delphi

There are so many different ancient sites in Greece that for some it can seem a little repetitive. However, Delphi stands out among the ruins due to its rich history, mythological mystery, and location.  Located on Mount Parnassus in the south of mainland Greece, Delphi is a place of spectacular views.  The temple complex is truly impressive; just make sure you look up from walking up the ancient stairs built for Apollo to take a moment to breathe in the view. There are tons of sites on the way to Delphi as well, so think about renting a car for the day or look into a bus tour!

Paros

Full Moon Party

People enjoying the full moon beach party in Greece (Danielle Aniceto/Borderless Travels)

Many of us have a couple of islands in mind when we plan our trip to Greece such as Santorini or Mykonos, however a word of advice from a local is to avoid these islands if you can and find your own island paradise. Santorini is definitely home to the most beautiful sunset I have ever seen but it is also full of tourists, and trying to book a hotel last minute is almost impossible, especially on Mykonos. Paros is a great alternative, because the beaches are beautiful, the party scene is good and it won’t be as packed so you will be able to find a spot for your towel on the beach. Just remember to check the weather.

Full moon party on Mykonos

Although locals know when to avoid the islands, they also like to join in on some of the action. The Full Moon parties on Mykonos are where everyone wants to be.  Locals and tourists alike, however you need to plan and book your hotel room way in advance or else you won’t be able to join the locals party until sunrise.

This is just the tip of the iceberg as the old saying goes, which has no relevance in the sunny laid back atmosphere of Greece.  If you’re lucky enough to spend more than a couple of weeks there or are just stopping over for a few days you need to try to visit at least one of my recommendations because Greece is one of my favourite places on the planet and it can be yours too.

Home / Asia / Cambodia / Angkor Wat Tips| Help yourself tour Angkor Wat like a boss

Angkor Wat Tips| Help yourself tour Angkor Wat like a boss

Updated: March 9, 2016
By: Danielle Aniceto
Sunrise at Angkor Wat

Siem Reap, CM – Arrive at sunrise to capture your perfect picture at Angkor Wat Cambodia (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

Showing up at the 6:00 am sunrise at Angkor Wat was not exactly what I expected it to be. Being a Lara Croft fan myself, I was hoping to have to swing down from a jungle vine into an undiscovered tomb and watch the sunrise from behind a mysterious untouched ruin. Instead, I arrived to a field full of people with the exact same idea. Having to fight for a place in the crowd for the perfect sunrise view, I couldn’t help but think what the rest of the day exploring would be like. It wasn’t exactly as I imagined it, but it was still pretty spectacular.

Angkor Wat is full of tourists, but if you can accept the fact and use a little imagination, you can have a lot of fun. Here are the tips and tricks I came up with during my visit to get as much time with my inner Lara Croft as possible and the least amount of time avoiding being in someone else’s photograph.

Angkor Wat photo

Siem Reap, CM – Capturing sunrise at Angkor Wat Cambodia (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

1. Sunrise at Angkor Wat

If you are into getting that beautiful sunrise photo at Angkor Wat, I would recommend you still go but not exactly at sunrise. Google the time of the sunrise at Angkor Wat the night before (it will depend on the time of year) and plan to arrive 15/30 minutes after. This will guarantee the best light for photographs and ensure that most tourists would have already left.

Angkor Wat Mistake: Most people arrive too early and get sick of waiting in the crowd by this point.

2. Angkor Wat

Sunrise at Angkor Wat is definitely a splendor to witness. The only problem, once again, is that everyone else wants to witness it at the same time too. I would recommend trying to go off the beaten track for a more authentic and reflective experience. It can be done! Just avoid the flow of the crowds and explore the ancient temples for enjoyment, not to go where everyone else is.  Trust yourself and discover what other people are missing.

Angkor Wat secrets: Start at a less well-known temple in the morning. Such as Bayon or Angkor Thom. Large tour groups always start at Angkor Wat.

If you want to learn about the history of Angkor Wat, I would suggest hiring a tour guide. The books that are being sold all over the grounds for various prices, are also a good idea but may not provide the interesting and more intimate details that the well-trained multi-lingual guides do.

People at Angkor Wat

Siem Reap, CM – Hundreds of people taking photos at sunrise at Angkor Wat (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

3. Bantaey Kdei

This temple complex takes up a lot of square footage and if you tire of crowds, it is one of the least busy temples in Angkor Wat. There are many passages and doorways to venture through and you can get that awesome picture beside a massive tree with fewer tourists to compete with.

4. Ta Phrom

The temple from the Lara Croft movie. The Tomb Raider temple was definitely a sight to see. However, it is also one of the most popular temples because of the allure of the large trees that grow throughout the complex.  If you’re not afraid to venture off you can find a space to get your photo but beware of the most famous tree from the 2001 film version of Tomb Raider.  You won’t get a moment alone there.

Ta Phrom secrets: After 3:00 pm, many tourists start clearing out of the temples. Perhaps the best time of day to get that selfie you were dreaming of.

Tomb Raider Tree

Siem Reap, CM – The famous Tomb Raider tree at Ta Phrom temple in Angkor Wat Tomb Raider tree Ta Phrom Angkor Wat (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

5. Angkor Thom

This temple is stunning and a lot of fun because there are tones of small temples throughout the forest in the surrounding area. This is a temple where you can really get off the beaten track and explore!  Remember the Angkor Wat temple complex is massive and if you’re willing to explore you’ll find hidden treasures that represent the spiritual setting these temples were designed to embody.

Angkor Thom secrets: Just don’t get stuck in the tall grass with the huge spider webs. I am still not sure what kind of spiders were hiding in those webs but I am glad we never found out.

As one of the most famous temple systems in the world Angkor Wat will far exceed your expectations.  Just remember that there are many temples to explore and all of them are several kilometers apart so be prepared to spend a lot of your day enjoying the jungle by tuk tuk (yes, you should definitely spend the little money it costs for a tuk tuk).

No matter how many times you visit you’ll always feel like you’re just scratching the surface of Angkor Wat’s mysteries.  So be kind to yourself and take my advice, get the three-day pass. It is well worth it, and with a little imagination and some childish enthusiasm, you can really make the experience your own.

Have fun and safe travels!

Home / Asia / Phnom Penh Hotel Review|The Palm Boutique Hotel

Phnom Penh Hotel Review|The Palm Boutique Hotel

Updated: January 15, 2016
By: Danielle Aniceto
rooftop pool

Phnom Penh, KH – relaxing by the rooftop pool (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

It’s easy to admit that arriving in Phnom Penh is a bit overwhelming at first, the organized chaos of the city’s streets are a sight to see in themselves. Everyone seems to be late for an important event all the time. The beauty in the dusty commotion was a wonderful discovery and I will always remember my time here. Amidst the hustle and bustle, there is an escape. If you are feeling run down from the city and you want a Zen-like recharge for relatively cheap, The Palm Boutique is a great choice.

Location

The Palm Boutique is in a great location for travellers of all kinds, many of the main Phnom Penh sites within a 15 min Tuk Tuk ride while avoiding the tourist traps.

Must see Phnom Penh sites I would recommend are The Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum (15 min Tuk Tuk ride), The Killing Fields (30-40 min from The Palm Boutique) and The Central Market only 12 min away. Learn more on how to get the most out of your visit to Phnom Penh.

What you Get

Palm Boutique

Phnom Penh, KH – Deluxe Twing Room at The Palm Boutique Hotel in (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

Amenities- The Palm Boutique has rooms to fit every traveller’s accommodations. Rooms come fully stocked with all the travel essentials and there is a roof top restaurant bar and pool to boot. Relax in the sun during happy hour while you enjoy the sights and sounds of the buzzing city below.

The staff is super friendly and keen to please you in any way they can. Something I noticed was the design of the hotel itself, as you walk into the hotel you experience a wave of tranquility due to the indoor lily ponds and the statues of happy Buddha’s. The Palm Boutique is very clean and open concept, giving you the opportunity to breathe in your vacation a little deeper.

Room- You can indulge or rest soundly with a variety of sized rooms for any specific needs. You can live like a queen with a Superior Queen Room for as low as $59.00 a night or if you have a big family or a group of friends you can live the high life in a Family Suite with 2 bedrooms and an awesome view.

Breakfast- Breakfast is included and you can choose between a buffet with a good mix of local flavors and western breakfast essentials depending on your specific tastes. The breakfast staff is incredibly nice and always ready to serve, just remember to say “Akoun” (thank you).

Why you should Stay

Staying at The Palm Boutique is an easy choice for anyone looking for relaxation and comfort in Phnom Penh. I would definitely recommend the stay and would personally visit again. The rooftop pool was a huge benefit as Phnom Penh is a seriously busy city and the rooftop creates ideal location for a break in between tourist stops.

Hotel Cost: $59.00-$240.00 (Superior Queen Room, Deluxe Double Room, Deluxe Twin Room, Junior Suite Room, Family Suite 2 Bedroom)

5 Perks

  •  Incredibly friendly staff
  • Swanky rooftop pool/bar/restaurant
  • Off the tourist trek (local feel)
  • Easy access to main Phnom Penh sites
  • Comfortable and diverse room selection

The Palm Boutique Hotel

http://www.thepalmboutique.com/

+855 011/81207771

info@thepalmboutique.com

No. 270,Street 63, Sangkat Tonle Bassac (Boung Keng Kong II), Khan Chamkarmorn, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Palm Boutique room

Phnom Penh, KH – The deluxe Twin Room at The Palm Boutique Hotel (Ian Yacobucci/Borderless Travels)

Borderless Travels was provided with a media rate by The Palm Boutique Hotel in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. However, all opinions are my own as I only endorse products I actually use and believe in.