Iceland has been on my travel bucket list for a long time, but somehow I always end up on a tropical destination far far away from Denmark - so, this Fall after seeing endless of beautiful pictures on Instagram and my all time favorite timekiller GOT (Game of Thrones), I decided to give Iceland a try. Even though I always wanted to travel to Iceland during summertime because of the weather, it still has it perks to go there off-season and if you're lucky, you can experience Aurora Borealis (northern lights)! But traveling to Iceland during winter season is also much cheaper, less touristy and there is something magical about Iceland during wintertime - maybe because we're in the Arctic circle?

The best way to visit Iceland is on a self-drive road trip, but if you're time is limited or if you don't have a drivers license, then I can recommend you to book some really nice trips from: https://www.likealocalguide.com/reykjavik - where you can go on small bus trips to the main attractions on the Iceland.

Where to stay

For such a small city, the amount of things to do in Reykjavik, Iceland is truly incredible. Whether you’re taking a road trip to catch the Northern Lights, enjoying some natural healing in one of Iceland’s many hot springs, or simply checking out some architecture and food spots in the city, the list of things to do in the world’s northernmost sovereign capital is truly endless. Likewise, the amount of Reykjavik hotels is surprisingly vast as well, from upscale minimalist European towers to posh lodges off the beaten path.

I always use either booking.com or Airbnb when I do some research for accommodation, and I quickly found out that there is practical only one area to stay at in the quirky capital of the North: the centrum of Reykjavik. Make sure to stay close to Laugavegur, which is the main walking street of Reykjavik and you're practical close to everything. Reykjavik is a little city with everything within the walking distance and I guess you'll see it all within 24 hours.

Reykjavik downtown

Where to eat?

I was actually quite surprised to see how vegan-friendly Reykjavik is. I found vegan options almost everywhere and it was easy to find the vegan sections in the different supermarkets around the city. There is one main street in Reykjavik and from there you'll find most of the food spots that offers vegan friendly meals. Unfortunately I was only in Reykjavik for couple of days, so I didn't try much, but here is my 5 top picks:


Kaffi Vínyl

This little quirky cafe which is also a record-shop, is actually the only all-vegan option in town. Its a popular hang-out spot for the local cool cats and every weekend their house-dj spins records while you can enjoy an Icelandic beer or a black bean burger! Their menu offers are limited because they change the menu after seasons and to reduce food-waste (win-win)! I ordered myself a black bean burger for lunch which was a bit dry, but tasty anyways and a cookie with coffee the next day, The cookie was really sweet and went really good with my almond milk latte, YUM!

Noodle Station

This little noodle joint was located next to my hostel and the menu offer is simple: a big bowl of noodle soup! It comes in three variations and one of them is a veggie one made on a vegetable broth. It won't come with fish sauce, but make sure anyway to mention without fish sauce at the counter as there is always a line and everything goes fast. Can I recommend it? YES! The portions are big and prices are small. It almost feels like you're in Hong Kong and not in little Reykjavik.

Location: Laugavegur 103, 101 Reykjavík

GLÓ

Gló means to glow in Icelandic and this vegan-friendly food spot was definitely my favorite one on the list. Their menu consist mostly from different vegan bowls with all kinds of toppings and dressings, different burritos and mix your own salads. Everything is seasonal, fresh and tasty. Beside food they also have a range of juices, kombuchas, beers and vegan cakes that you can enjoy with your meal.

Location: Laugavegur 20b, 101 Reykjavík

MAT BAR

MAT BAR is a restaurant, bar and deli in one. The cuisine is a seasonal combination of Nordic and Italian gourmet, making it a special experience from the first bite. They have a whole vegan section with starters and main course marked with a (V). Start or end your dinner with one of their delicious cocktails. You can always enter their website to see what is on the menu the following day and I would recommend you to make a table reservation in the weekends or during peak season (june/july/august). I had myself a wild mushroom tart with spinach and wild Icelandic herbs.

I loved their modern kitsch interior with the green walls, bold monochrome floor tiles, mirrors with rounded edges and circular brass ceiling lights that clearly reflected the history of the 1960's building. The service is spot on and they prepare the vegan food separate from the meats.

Location: Hverfisgata 26, 101 Reykjavík // www.matbar.is

YOGA FOOD

Yoga Food is a new restaurant in Reykjavik with the focus on creating healthy nutritional food that stimoulates and help to balance your chakras (A chakra is a center of energy. Originating from Sanskrit, it literally means “wheel” by association with its function as a vortex of spinning energy interacting with various physiological and neurological systems in the body) - The menu is simple and mostly raw and they do seven fresh juices, each representing the colors of the Chakras.

Location: Grensásvegur 10, 108 Reykjavík // www.yogafood.is

Iceland is a truly magical country and this is definitely not the last time im going there. As I mentioned before the easiest way to travel around and see the beautiful nature on the island is to rent a car, but if you do not have the option to do that, then I would recommend to preorder a guided tour. You'll get the insight in the Icelandic culture, history, mentality and some fun facts. Tours I can recommend:

- Golden Circle (8 hours): The three primary stops on the route are the Thingvellir National Park, the Gullfoss waterfall, and the geothermal area in Haukadalur, which contains the geysers Geyser and Strokkur. Other stops include the Kerið volcanic crater.

- Blue Lagoon (4-6 hours): this geothermal spa is a man-made lagoon and is probably Iceland's most visited tourist attraction. The water temperature in the bathing and swimming area of the lagoon averages 37–39 °C (99–102 °F) and is rich in minerals like silica and sulfur. You have to prepay the tickets online before enter the spa area: www.bluelagoon.com

- Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon (12 hours or more): This is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and the trip itself to this point were AMAZING! You will pass Skógafoss waterfall, Eyjafjallajökull volcano (the one that erupted in 2010), Vík black sand beach and lava fields caused by one of the biggest eruptions in the worlds history that covered 40% of Iceland with lava and made Europe go sunless for almost 4 years ( !! ) - but the icing on the cake was definitely the Glacier Lagoon and Diamond beach. Diamond beach get its name because of the huge ice lumps that are washed up on the shore. The sand is totally black and it is an amazing sight to see the deep blue ice lumps as a contrast to the black sand. This can only be experienced during winter season.

Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon

Diamond beach

Right: Thingvillir National Park // Left: Harpa Concert Hall

Road trip through Lava fields

Skógafoss Waterfall

Right: Kerið crater // Left: Blue Lagoon

I hope you enjoyed my vegan foodie guide to Reykjavik and if you have any questions, please feel free to write me in the comments and I'll get back to you as soon as possible,

Love from Katia

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In my opinion Thailand must be one of the few countries who has it all: kind and friendly local people, white sand beaches, colorful culture, lush green jungles, mountains, dramatic landscapes and not to mention ALL THE FOOD!

This was my fifth trip to this amazing country and I had yet not covered the Northern part of Thailand at that time. I think that if you're a first timer to Thailand, then you'll probably head to the South for island hopping or just beach bum'ing at the Phuket peninsula, but I will probably recommend you to go to the North as the nature here is spectacular and you'll get less turists and more the vibrant Thai vibe - or of course, you can do both. Its easy and cheap to travel around Thailand, and I can recommend combining Bangkok with Chiang Mai and Koh Samet or Koh Kood & Koh Chang. You can do this in 14-21 days and easy get the whole Thai package in one!

There is three ways of traveling from Bangkok to Chiang Mai: by train (takes aprox. 11 hours), by bus (aprox: 13 hours) or you go by flight. Of course its faster by flight, but if you're on a budget I will suggest to take the night train and kill to birds with one stone (hmm, that proverb though)!

Where to stay?

Once you'll get there, I'll recommend you to stay either in the Old Town of Chiang Mai where you're are in the centre of it all or if you prefer a bit more cosy and quite then try Kaysorn Residence where I stayed. Kaysorn Residence is a little low-key eco guesthouse where you can have vegan breakfast, refill your water and join Beach-Clean Up campaigns all around Thailand. The host is a Thai woman married to a British man and she speaks perfectly English. So ask her for tour arrangements or if you have some questions in particular when you are there. The rooms are clean and neat and they have a little garden and lounge where you can sit and enjoy your coffee, beer og smoothie with a nice book. Its located ca. 2 km from the centre, but you can either rent bikes at the property or take the Thai tourist taxis which are easy and cheap. See availability and book here: Kaysorn Residence, Chiang Mai. Otherwise I would recommend: Green Tiger House which is located in the centre of Chiang Mai, and have a restaurant with only vegan and vegetarian options!! Unfortunately everything was booked when we search for availability, but we tried their restaurant and the food was YUM! Try their vegan breakfast of roasted potatoes, scrambles tofu with onions and a noodle soup. The scrambled tofu was the bomb!

Photo above: Kayson Residance (photo credit: Kaysorn Residance)

Photo: Green Tiger House - See availability and book here: Green Tiger House.

Where to eat?

I found out that Chiang Mai is the second biggest city in Thailand, but the pace of life is much slower than bustling Bangkok and has a authentic Thai charm of its own. I also found out how easy it is to find vegan and vegan-friendly places around the city. And the flavors of the food is well-known, but still has its own touch of the Northern culture influenced by its two mighty neighbors: Lao and Burma. Whether you are craving a spicy Thai curry, healthy salad, raw sushi rolls, a falafel wrap, or a vegan cake – you’ll find it all in Chiang Mai.

Beside all of the tasty food options, you will also find a vibrant art scene, several markets, lana style guest houses and the biggest collection of temples in the whole South Eastern Asia. My favourite one was What Prah That Doi Suthep temple which is located on Suthep mountain and has a breathtaking view over Chiang Mai and the area around from the temple.

Street art at U.S Consulate General building

Doi Suthep Temple

BUT the most important is the food right? So where to eat i Chiang Mai? As I mentioned before, Chiang Mai is probably one of the easiest cities (in my opinion) to be/eat vegan as you'll find several restaurants or food spots where they serve wholesome organic vegan dishes typical from a local family-owned farm nearby. I have listed mine 6 favorite vegan places:

Amrita Garden

This little low-key vegan restaurant is located in a lovely peaceful traditional teak house in the old city and offers delicious and nutritious microbiotic food, mostly made of organic local products and a looots of love! The outdoor seating area is quite low-key and the prices very reasonable. Even though that I've got recommended to try their vegan burger, I went for the tofu satay with spicy peanut dip and it was heavenly!

Location: 2/1 Samlan Road Soi 5, T prasing, Chiang Mai

Imm Aim Vegetarian & Bike Cafe

Imm Aim means 'happiness in your heart' and boy are they right! This lovely veggie joint serves a fusion of Thai, Mexican and Middle Eastern flavors all grown locally - from farm to table. With a diverse range of tasty dishes you’re unlikely to find such an interesting cross-cultural vegetarian blend of recipes all gathered under one menu. Even though its not all vegan, many of the vegetarian dishes can be veganized without any problems. The plates are generous, decently priced and colorfully presented with edible flowers. I went here twice as I couldn't decide what to choose because everything on their menu looked so yum! Try their fresh summer rolls with a spicy mango dipping!

Location: 7/3 Santirak Rd., (Near Santitham Temple), Chiang Mai

Bubbles Live

This little quirky food spot is 100% organic and 100% tasty! Their menu is not completely vegan, but they do an effort of highlight the vegan options and can veganize some dishes. The atmosphere here is very relaxed with a nice vibe. Very kind staff whos smiles and ask you if everything is okay. I went here twice and I would definitely recommend their vegan burger with avo salad!

Location: 5, Soi Ratchamanka 2, Chiang Mai

Morning Glory

This low-key vegan-friendly restaurant has a nice selection of authentic vegan thaifood dishes and they also offers a weekly cooking-class, with the owner of the restaurant. I will definitely recommend you to try their vegan pad thai with tofu. Did you know that Pad Thai is Thailands national dish? Its one of my favorite dishes and this one is one of the best I ever had in Thailand! YUM! Another tasteful dish is their simple, but yet so flavorful stir-fried veggies, and of course the famous morning glory with fried garlic!

Location: 34 Prapokklao Road, Prahsing, Chiang Mai

Bodhi Tree Cafe

This little vegan-friendly food spot doesn't look very much, but their food taste beyond amazing! Bodhi Tree is located in the heart of the Old City and I heard that they have opened another one outside the Old city, but I didn't visit that one. The restaurant has a pleasant little rustic bamboo garden setting and a nice authentic vibe. The menu is fairly limited but has some interesting options on it including Thai and Western food and even a whole page of raw food which I was particularly impressed with. The green mango salad is delicious. Everything is organic and MSG-free. Some of their dishes contains eggs, but they can do it vegan if you ask.

Location: 13 Ratchadamnoen Road, Soi 4, Prasingh, Chiang Mai

Alice's Restaurant

I actuelle only had a raw cheesecake here and a coffee as I discovered this veggie spot after I had lunch, but I could smell and see the food at the other tables and it looked FANTASTIC! And of course my cake was delicious too! The places is not so fancy, but the owner, Alice, was so sweet and wonderful. She makes her own kombucha and offers vegan cooking classes once a week. I would definitely recommend this place for a lunch or a quick pit-stop for coffee and cake!

Location: 74/1 Loi Kroh Rd., Chiang Mai

Good to know when in Thailand

Being vegan in Thailand is easy. Fruit stands are at every corner, fresh markets are abundant, and the demand for organic products is growing. It is always possible to get vegan options in Thai restaurants, since their traditional cuisine is mostly composed of vegetables.

The only problem is what they cook with. They tend to use chicken broth, shrimp paste and fish sauce in most dishes, so be sure to speak up if you want to avoid these. The touristy food spots will know if you simply tell them that you are vegan, but it can be a little tricky if you're in rural areas or at a streetfood vendor who doesn't speak English. My best tip is to learn som few basic thai sentences and tell them on thai that you dont consume meat, eggs or diary products. You can also just copy paste my little vegan-dictionary and take it with you.


  • Jay เจ: vegan
  • Kin jay กินเจ: literally translates to “eat jay” and is easily understood by food vendors.
  • Mangsawirat มังสวิรัติ: vegetarian
  • mai kin nuua sat ไม่กินเนื้อสัตว์: I do not eat meat
  • han/pom mai gin nam pla ฉันไม่กินน้ำปลา: I dont eat fish sauce
  • chan/pom mai gin kai ฉันไม่กินไข่: I dont eat eggs


Alternatively, you can copy paste and print out the following:


vegetarian-in-thai

Being vegan in Thailand is often deeply respected as there is a link to Buddhism embedded within the practice. Despite being a predominately Buddhist country, the majority of Thais are omnivores. Being vegan is often viewed as an elevated way to live. Stating you are vegan (again, yes you too vegetarians), is a more fruitful and a better received way to go about things rather than asking for something to be omitted, a.k.a. changing someone’s recipe or possibly viewed by some, the Thai way of doing things.

I hope that you enjoyed reading my vegan guide to Chiang Mai. If you have any questions regarding sightseeing, food or anything else in Chiang Mai, please leave a comment. 

Love from Katia

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It has been a huge bucket list thing for me to travel to Cuba and when my friend asked me if I wanted to spend the Easter holidays on Cuba with her, I was not in doubt at all! We bought our flight tickets online and two months later, we were on our way to visit the biggest island of the Caribbean.

It was a totally unique experience to be picked up by a cuban in an old Chevrolet Bel Air and drive towards raw and beautiful Havana. I was amazed by its astounding history, raw architecture, music, dance and hospitality. The Cubas is one of the most genuine friendly and happy people who takes you in with big smiles and open arms. Its very hard to not fall in love with this unique country where the latino music is loud and the bars full of tasty mojitos.

Even though that Cuba is an unique travel experience, its still a bit hard to find some vegan options because Cuban food mostly consist of meats, rice and beans. A really good advice is to stock up your bag with dry fruits, nuts, crackers and powerbars. However, I have roamed the streets of Old Habana to give you guys a little guide where to find some delish vegan food and tasty cocktails:

BAR EL DANDY Y GALERIA

El Dandy is a hip snack and cocktail bar in the Old Havana and is one of the coolest bars I have ever visit. The interior is kitsch with old photos hanging on the wall, old American furniture mixed with new ones and sweet latino vibes. Their menu is a mix of Cuban, Mexican and Spanish cuisine and they have a little range of vegan options including spicy cuban veggie soup, sweet potato fries, fruit platters, tapas and salads. This place is perfect to enjoy a breakfast, lunch or a pre-dinner drinks or just having a cold beer and mingle with the cool Cuban city kiddos in vibrant Havana.

See more at: http://www.bareldandy.com

Cafe Bohemia

Cafe Bohemia is a little boutique hotel with its own restaurant located at Plaza Vieja de La Habana. This little cute food spot is probably the one in Havana with the biggest vegan food options and many of their dishes can be veganized. They also do fresh juices and tasty cocktails. You can find La Bohemia on Airbnb, if you want to stay in one of their studios or suites within walking distance to everything.

See more at: http://www.havanabohemia.com

O'Reilly 304

A tiny, trendy restaurant specializing in gin cocktails and contemporary Cuban cuisine that’s unassumingly sandwiched between two shabby buildings on the outskirts of Habana Vieja, it’s easy to walk past altogether. But it’s clear from first entry that here is something quite different.

Framed glowing reviews from the Miami Herald hang proudly on the walls, cool bartenders shake up incredible-looking cocktails, and the menu offers several veggie plates. From pumpkin soup with cilantro to soft veggie tacos stuffed with beans and seasonal vegetables, O’Reilly 304 reflects the slowly developing restaurant scene in Cuba.

Lamparilla Tapas & Cervezas

Another funky and hip hot spot for dinning and having tasty cocktails. You’ll find it a respite from the hustle and bustle of the old city. The space is completely open and it’s decorated with a funky mix of ’50s memorabilia, random vintage objects and beautiful murals inspired by ’50s commercial Coca-Cola adds. A big sign on the wall ironically reads “No Wifi, Please talk to each other.” Here you can find some simple veggie dishes to go along with your cocktails - and yes its more cocktails for dinner and veggie sides as a snack!

And of course, beside the restaurants or paladars as they call them on Cuba, there is small veggie markets or individual sellers who sells fruits, veggies or fresh coconuts for a living. To be totally honest, Cuba was not the country where I had my best fresh coconuts, as they pluck them too ripe, but if you have a good coconut eye, maybe you can spot a younger one among the pile. 

It is always a benefit if you can speak a bit Spanish as there is not many Cubans who can speak or understand English and most of it is very basic, so I'll recommend you to learn some Spanish sentences so you can explain that you're a vegan and don't consume meat, eggs or diary products. Well its easier that way and it helped me a lot on my journey around Cuba


I don't eat meat: ​Yo no como carne

I don't eat diary products: ​Yo no como productos lacteos

I don't eat eggs: ​Yo no como huevos 

I'm vegan: ​Soy vegano 

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