Can Travel Bloggers Still ‘Go On Holiday’?

So far this year I have been incredibly fortunate to have gone Skiing in Tignes,  enjoyed a city break in Rome, seen the Grand Prix in Monaco and relaxed on a Spa Weekend in Gstaad. On all of these trips, I have either worn my ‘serious travel journalist’ or my ‘super keen travel blogger’ hats for. I’m so lucky to experience so much travel through my job, but a part of me was beginning to worry… 

“Can Travel Bloggers still go on Holiday?”

So when my friends suggested a holiday in Ibiza, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to test the theory and set myself an Anti-Blogger challenge. I decided to embrace the trip as a real ‘Holiday’ rather than one of my working travel adventures.  I left my SLR camera at home, turned off Data Roaming and did a fraction of the pre-travel research I would usually do. Here’s how I got on…

Embracing the curls!

Embracing the curls!

Not many places in the world quite compare to the sun drenched island of Ibiza. Notorious for its relentless sunshine, glamorous beach clubs and an outrageously good party scene, it’s somewhere I have wanted to go for years. So my trip to Ibiza was eagerly anticipated to say the least. My friends and I had been honing the bikini bods since May and I had even lined up a Spa Weekend in Gstaad to get holiday ready. So there we were, a mixed group of 6 boys and 6 girls all best of friends, jetting off a la Easy Jet, into the unknown for a week of fun in the sun. With no article deadlines and no impending blogs to post, I was free to go offline and forget about the world of digital completely.

We rented a private villa up in the hills in the exclusive Sa Carroca area of Ibiza. Sa Carroca is located inland and is equidistant from main party towns Playa den Bossa and San Antonio. It’s a little off the off the beaten path, but allowed us to escape from the crowds and combine partying with relaxation throughout the day (however trying to direct a taxi driver back in the dark after too much Sangria seemed to be our biggest hurdle). With a stunning panoramic view of the glittering Mediterranean sea, infinity pool, huge terrace area and beautifully Spanish interior, we definitely had an ‘MTV Cribs’ moment on arrival.

One thing that the Villa didn’t have was Wi-Fi. Now, normally when using my ‘Travel Blogger / Journalist’ hat, I could have quite easily gone into meltdown. But instead, I saw this as a sign to embrace my Anti-Blogger challenge.

Gorgeous panoramic views from our Sa Carrocca Villa

Bella Vista: Gorgeous panoramic views from our Sa Carrocca Villa

During the week we planned a rough itinerary of where we wanted to go during the week, which included a mix of day parties, exploring the island and of course, club nights. The Traveller in me wanted to get out and see as much of the Island as possible, but embracing my anti-blogger challenge, I was happy to go with the flow and embrace this trip as a real holiday and not as a working press trip. Here were my top 5 memories from the over the week.

Our view from the villa looking down over the pool.

Our view from the villa looking down over the pool.

1. Ocean Beach Club Day Party

In my opinion, the best thing (hands down) about Ibiza was the day parties. Who could ever get bored of a day at a gorgeous beach club with glorious sunshine, incredible house music and delicious cocktails? I for one cannot. This was certainly the state of play for our day at Ocean Beach Club. With some handy pre-planning, we booked out 12 sun loungers for the day which included towels and waitress service.

The calm before the storm...

The calm before the storm…

The sun loungers were 30 Euros each (they cost about 5 on the beach) and the cocktails certainly don’t come cheap, but for one day it is totally worth it. The day starts out super chilled and by mid-afternoon the music really picks up and people begin to really party. One thing I’d definitely recommend is getting down early and booking a sun bed in advance. You want to make sure your close to the action as possible! The food offerings are also amazing and endless options for pool side snacking (including Sushi) – yum.

Me and the girls on our Bacardi branded sun loungers

Me and the girls on our Bacardi branded sun loungers

2. Ibiza’s Super Clubs: Pacha and Ushuaia

Of course, being in Ibiza we dabbled in a few club nights and Pacha and Ushuaia were my favourite nights. The best Ibiza clubs are very much a case of your taste in music, so don’t take my word for it. Do your research before you go and check out the club nights on Ibiza Spotlight before you go. This is your club night bible. Pacha has a huge dance floor space and has a Parisian theme running through. There is an R’n’B room as well as well as the main dance floor which plays mainstream and house music.

Watching the sun-set at Ushuaia

Watching the sun-set at Ushuaia

Ushuaia Club is within the 5* Ushusia Beach Hotel which is also home to chic Japanese restaurant Minami. Ushuaia welcomes day guests and is wall to wall with glamorous white interiors and chic pool side sun loungers. Come nightfall the hotel’s pool transforms into a dance floor and amazing light and stage shows compliment the incredible music. It’s famous for it’s afternoon parties and internationally known DJ’s such as David Guetta. Being the luxury travel lover that I am, I definitely want to stay at Ushuaia next time I return to Ibzia.

A retro beach shot!

A retro beach shot!

3. Playa d’en Bossa Beach Front

For a day at the beach, I absolutely loved Playa d’en Bossa. A long golden sandy beach is fringed with endless beach bars playing ideal music to suit the type of day. In the morning, you’ll sunbathe to a chill out soundtrack and by mid-afternoon the beats pick up and you. With pool parties, water sports and endless bars, it’s a hedonists playground.

Bora Bora is located on the Playa d'en Bossa beach front and was one of my favourite bars along the beach.

Bora Bora is located on the Playa d’en Bossa beach front and was one of my favourite bars along the beach.

4. Exploring Ibiza Old Town

For a real taste of Spanish culture, I loved the Ibiza Old Town. Think winding cobbled streets, quaint boutiques, al fresco tapas bars and traditional ‘Helado’ (ice cream) stands. It’s the sort of place you could happily get lost in. Glamorous Super-Yachts line the port as well as a number of stylish sea-food restaurants. We visited Ibiza Old Town for an evening meal and stumbled across a gorgeous seafood restaurant called El Faro which has been running since the 1960’s. Serving delicious Paella and fresh salads with great service and perfect evening ambience, I would thoroughly recommend El Faro as a great restaurant in Ibiza Old Town.

Super yachts line the port in Ibiza Old Town

Super yachts line the port in Ibiza Old Town

5. Sunset at Cafe del Mar – San Antonio

One of the most memorable moments of the trip was seeing the sun go down on Ibiza’s famous ‘Sunset Strip’ in San Antonio. We didn’t venture over to San Antonio much during the week, but boy was I glad I did. On the last night we decided to round off the holiday in style by having dinner overlooking the bay. Cafe del Mar is right next door to Cafe Mambo and are both great options for a sunset dinner – be sure to reserve your table in advance though.

Dinner at Cafe del Mar

Dinner at Cafe del Mar

We ordered a bunch of huge mix of tapas and nachos and just chilled out as the sun slowly sank into the ocean. The sky lit with oranges and pinks and huge crowds gathered on the rocks below. With a refreshing evening breeze, great company and , we soaked in the atmosphere and really made the most of our last night in Ibiza.

Watching Ibiza's famous sun set on the Sun Set Strip, San Antonio

Watching Ibiza’s famous sun set on the Sun Set Strip, San Antonio

My week in Ibiza was an amazing escape from reality. Being a travel blogger and writer, at times I felt like I need to be ‘seeing’ and ‘doing’ more than just drinking a cocktail by the pool. But actually, it was a refreshing change from most of my trips. For once, I didn’t feel the pressure to see every inch of a city and dig my teeth into the culture. I simply went with the flow and took things at a slow pace.  I don’t think I can remember a week where I have used my phone, social media accounts and emails less, but it felt bloody good. My week in Ibiza made me realise that you can travel the world’s most exotic destinations and stay in the most luxurious hotels, but never underestimate the amazing-ness of a week with your best friend filled with sun, sea, sand and serious tunes!

What did you think of my Ibiza post? Are you going to Ibiza this summer too? Perhaps you are a blogger too and have experienced something similar? If you enjoyed my post, I’d love to hear from you! So please comment in the box below. I reply to all comments, Thanks! Jess x 

 

 

 

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20 Comments

  1. 5th January 2015 / 10:29 pm

    Great post! I think my boyfriend would deffo appreciate a blog free week away!

  2. wuhan
    12th August 2014 / 3:14 am

    cool! exchanges between the blogger is essential, as many bloggers expect as more people

  3. 8th August 2014 / 7:09 am

    Ibiza has been top of my holiday list for so long but my gang have never said one year “lets do it!” So I’ve shot gunned it as my hen do destination (not engaged, but you know…) Looks like you had a lot of fun! and iit’s great to switch off sometimes – I know how you feel, as a fellow blogger xx

    • 10th August 2014 / 10:32 am

      Hey Anna! Oooh you will have to be the ring leader and get your friends to commit! A long weekend would be perfect, I think that’s what I will do next time I go. xx

  4. 5th August 2014 / 7:32 am

    I so badly want to go to Ibiza!

  5. Southern Adventurer
    1st August 2014 / 6:05 pm

    Great post! I think everyone needs a holiday and it looks like you had a blast! I hope I can become a full time travel blogger one day like you! Love your blog and any tips would be great!!

    -Southern Adventurer
    http://asouthernadventurer.blogspot.com

    • 2nd August 2014 / 3:19 pm

      Thanks Southern Adventurer! I did indeed have a blast with my friends. I think if I was as ‘bloggy’ as I normally am it could have seemed a little anti social when in a group of 12 anyway. But I am not a fully time blogger, my blog is a hobby on the side of my full time job which is a magazine editor x – will be sure to check out your blog!

  6. 30th July 2014 / 2:47 pm

    This is a great post Jess! I often wonder if I can ever go to a place again without taking a million photos and thinking ooh that would be good to write about. Must be pretty hard to turn the blogger inside you off but I guess having no wifi helps!

    I went to Ibiza last year with friends and loved it especially Ocean Bar. The sunsets were so so gorgeous – I’ve actually just done my own post on Ibiza’s sunsets!

    Love the group selfie! 🙂

    • 30th July 2014 / 2:59 pm

      Hey Ayla, thanks for your comment! I did found it strange not taking a million photos or taking notes, I’m sure you can relate! I will always see every trip as a blogging opportunity in some way but think it’s still important to try and switch off now and again. However, deep down it’s sort of ‘once a blogger always a blogger’. The group selfie was my favourite one of the trip – so couldn’t help sharing it 🙂 xx

      P.S I am searching for your Ibiza sunsets post now!

  7. Packing my Suitcase
    30th July 2014 / 3:44 pm

    Great post Jessica!! I also wondered the same thing a few days ago… I think my husband finds annoying me taking pictures of everything all the time hahaha and I think we both deserve a time, which Im not worried about capturing everything for the blog, but instead relaxing and enjoying the moment 🙂 last weekend we went to Budapest and I could do both, a little working for the blog but also enjoying the Formula 1 Grand Prix without checking my phone all the time 😀 Ibiza looks amazing, I hope to go the sometime soon! xxx, Allane

    • Shikha (whywasteannualleave)
      30th July 2014 / 9:48 pm

      Haha, my husband’s the same Allane – always asking if I can just “turn off” the blogger in me at least one trip! I’ve not tried yet since I started blogging but well done you Jess for doing so – I do think it’s important once in a while! 🙂

      • Packing my Suitcase
        31st July 2014 / 9:13 am

        hahaha yes… I try but its hard, its already something that makes part of my life! 😀

      • 2nd August 2014 / 3:18 pm

        Thanks Shikha, it’s not always so easy to ‘turn off’ blogger mode is it? I usually don’t even attempt to and probably will continue to stay in full on blogger mode when I am on holiday but it was great to test out the theory and realise that I can still switch off 🙂

    • 2nd August 2014 / 3:16 pm

      Thanks so much Allane, and thank you for your comment. I did hope other Travel Bloggers could relate when I wrote this post, so night to hear that you agree and face the same slight digital addictions as me. The art is being able to experience as a trip as a real traveller but document it as a blogger I think! Budapest sounds fab, can’t wait to read your posts xx

      • Packing my Suitcase
        3rd August 2014 / 8:30 am

        You’re welcome Jessica 🙂 yes don;t worry, you are not alone with this hahaha and I agree with you, the art is really to experience as a traveller but document it as a blogger! 🙂

  8. 30th July 2014 / 1:54 pm

    Very cool. It’s nice to see that it’s possible to take a step back and have fun just as a traveler and not a travel writer. Thanks for sharing! I’ve never been much of a beach person, but you sunset photo especially has made me want to go to Ibiza.

    • 30th July 2014 / 2:00 pm

      Hi there! Thanks for your lovely comment. I didn’t know if I’d be able to take a step back at first, I am usually constantly thinking of blog angles and the best instagram shots whilst I am away, but once I got into it it was very refreshing. Ibiza isn’t for everyone but it is a beautiful place for relaxing as well as partying – not to mention the amazing sun sets 🙂

  9. 30th July 2014 / 11:23 am

    Great post and really nice to see you experiencing a different side to your travels 🙂 I loved Ibiza when I went a few years ago with my girls, really want to go back and do it all again!

    • 30th July 2014 / 2:54 pm

      Hi Lucy. Thanks for your comment. As a travel blogger I think it’s really important to embrace all kinds of travel experiences, including those of a real holiday maker! I am sure you agree. So glad I did it any really enjoyed it. Don’t get me wrong though – i’ll never tire of the press trips! x