I’ve just returned from a layover to the beautiful city of Oslo, Norway. It wasn’t my first time to the country, as we have family friends who live in the north of Norway who we have visited a few times, however it was to be my first time in Oslo, so I was very much looking forward to it!
The day started off with an absolutely stunning sunrise whilst on our way to the aircraft. I was hoping it was a sign of good weather to come in Norway!
The flight left on time and just under 7 hours later we landed into Oslo airport. We were whisked off to our hotel in the centre of town and arranged to meet shortly in the lobby. Soon the five of us were ready to go, and armed with maps and directions from the concierge, off we went!
My last trip was a flight to the Big Apple…there’s something magical about New York, no matter how many times you visit. I was especially looking forward to this flight as it was a 30 hour layover. Last time I was in New York was just a 24 hour layover, and those few extra hours really make all the difference.
After an early start from Dubai we were on our way. The flight was full, and since it was daytime everybody was awake, which certainly kept us on our feet! On long “ULR” (ultra long range) flights, we get a break in our bunk beds (CRC – Crew Rest Compartment), so while we take it in turns to rest we each have a lot more passengers to serve.
14 hours later we finally touched down in JFK, and after a long rush hour bus journey made it to our hotel.
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you may remember that I have some friends in New York, Stephen and Colin, who I met whilst interrailing around Europe before I joined Emirates. I’d messaged them before coming to see if they were free, and we arranged to meet for dinner.
Luckily they also got stuck in the terrible traffic, which gave me a bit of time to shower and freshen up after the long flight.
They’d reserved a table in a restaurant called “The Smith”, which was located just a short drive from my hotel. We could have walked but we already running a little late for the reservation, so decided to hop in a taxi instead.
It’s that time of the month again…. my roster for April has been published!
For the first time in a while I’ve got 2 new destinations that I haven’t flown to before, which I’m quite happy about. I also managed to get quite a few turnarounds thrown in there (although with swaps I’ve managed to reduce that number from 3 to 2!)
Turnarounds are short-ish flights to places within about 4 hours, where we come straight back to Dubai instead of staying in that city.
Even after almost 3 and a half years in Dubai, I’m still discovering new spots in town.
When my best friend Lucy came to visit last month, I took her to all of the usual sights (the Burj Khalifa, Dubai Mall, Desert Safari, Dubai Marina…etc!) but I also tried to include a few areas she might not have heard of.
We jumped in a taxi to the old Dubai, Bastakiya, located along the Creek. Here you can find the traditional old spice and gold souks, as well as lots of lovely little side streets.
The Dubai Museum is also located here and at only 3 dirhams per person, is a real bargain and worth it if you’re interested in the history of Dubai and how the UAE has developed from a small pearl-fishing spot to the metropolitan city it is today.
After having strolled through the old streets which house the traditional wind towers that were once used to keep the houses cool, we stopped for a coffee in the Arabian Tea house.
This is an absolutely charming little cafe, hidden inside a courtyard.
It’s full of pretty flowers, wicker chairs, and white drapes floating in the breeze.
I recently got back from a quick little layover in Düsseldorf. It was actually my first time visiting the city, however it’s never been somewhere I’ve been particularly interested in visiting.
The flight over was relatively busy but only around 6 hours, so we were there before we knew it. Our hotel is right next to the airport, so we walked over from the terminal and once I got up to my room I collapsed onto the bed!
I’ve been doing a lot of flying lately with not many days off in between so I was pretty exhausted (even if it wasn’t a long flight, getting up at 4am takes its toll!).
A few hours later a few of us met up to head into town for some dinner. Since it was Sunday, almost everything was shut, as is the norm in Germany. If not I would have made more of an effort to see a bit of the city, but I’ll have to save that for my next trip there!
After a quick trip on the train, we were in the city centre. It was pretty quiet, and although it was chilly, it was nice to get some fresh air and see a new city.