The second part of the Hen Do California Trip was 3 days in San Diego. I was super excited about this stop because the city is just amazing! It’s probably one of my favourite US cities now because of its beaches, parks, neighbourhoods, food and the general laid-back beach vibe. It’s got the typical skyscrapers that most American cities have but it’s different – it’s got a real small town feel to it. 

Hence, I’ve created for you the ULTIMATE three-day guide to the city of San Diego. 

Day 1: Gaslamp Quarter, Embarcadero, Fish Market Restaurant

I arrived here after spending the weekend in Simi Valley, Los Angeles. I went on the most beautiful train journey using Amtark Pacific Surfliner. I literally have no words to describe the sea views you have. The Pacific Surfliner has two stops in San Diego: Santa fe Depot in downtown and the Old Town Transit Centre. I went to the main station which in downtown. 

Luckily, a hotel nearby was kind enough to let me hold my bags there for 2 hours until my two friends come as they were delayed. As I had a bit of time to spare – I decided to walk from downtown to Gaslamp Quarter. 

Gaslamp Quarter

Gaslamp District is home to boutiques, cafes, restaurants and a bunch of cool shops. I was a huge fan of the historical buildings – like Balboa Theatre and the Louis Bank of Commerce. It’s definitely got a small town feel to it as it has no skyscrapers and very few traffic lights.  Encompassing a roughly 16 block radius, the Gaslamp district has traditional Victorian architecture mixed with trendy construction which truly creates a unique mashup of styles. Make sure to try the ice cream at Ghirardelli! 


It’s also meant to have a great nightlight scene as its famous for its many rooftop bars – unfortunately we didn’t have time to check it out. 


After meeting up my friends, we dropped off our bags in the Airbnb and took an uber to the Embarcadero. This is an area along the waterfront where you can explore some of San Diego’s top attractions: The Maritime Museum, the USS Midway (a long serving aircraft carrier with 29 restored aircrafts on board) and the Star of India (the world’s oldest active ship). We just took pictures here, chatted and chilled at the waterfront. 

The Fish Market Restaurant

After reading reviews about it on Google, I must say, this restaurant lived up to expectations. It had excellent harbour views and the prices were moderate for an exceptional dinner. We had the classical fish and chips. Beware though, there is often a long queue and so you might have to wait for a while for your dinner – but it worth it!

Day 2: La Jolla, Mission Beach, Sunset Cliffs, Little Italy

La Jolla

After surviving our first night in our Air BnB, we took an uber to La Jolla beach (pronounced la-hoya). We had breakfast at Sugar and Scribe Bakery before heading down to La Jolla Cove. There is no way to miss it as you just follow everyone else down the road. 

 La Jolla Cove is a beautiful sheltered cove with crystal clear waters. We continued walking along the beach promenade where we noticed plenty of seals and pelicans – the real residents around here. The beaches are so beautiful!

Pacific to Mission Beach

There are plenty of other beaches that we also wanted to see before leaving San Diego. The other top ones include Ocean Beach (traditionally hippy option), Mission Beach (home to Belmont Park fun fair) and Pacific Beach (good for surfing). As I already surfed in Ventura a few days before, we took an uber from La Jolla Beach to Pacific Beach with the aim of walking down the promenade to Mission Beach. We took an electric scooter from Pacific Beach which was super fun. It was fun until I rode straight into a wall and had a bruise that stayed until my wedding and honeymoon! All of this so I can go ahead and take a video of my friends scootering (that’s love haha!)

Mission beach was amazing and i would definitely recommend going. Other than relaxing at the beach, or at the bar, there is plenty of things to do here. We had an ice-cream and took in the vitamin D that our bodies desperately craved from living in London. 


Sunset Cliffs

As the sun was beginning to set, we quickly dropped off our electric scooters and took an uber to Sunset Cliffs as this was meant to be the best place to catch the sunset in San Diego ( I think the name gives it away). It was just the perfect evening and I spent with the perfect friends a girl could ask for. 

Little Italy

My friend LOVES Italian food and so at this point, we were starving and were ready to eat. Little Italy is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in San Diego, dating back in the early 1900s when it was a fisherman’s outpost for Italian immigrants. It has since grown to over 50 square blocks. We sat outside of the restaurant (so that we could people-watch) and ate the best pasta I had in a while. We also got a few desserts to share between us – ya’ll Italians know how to cook! 

We then headed back to the apartment and packed our bags ready to leave the next day. 

Day 3: Balboa Park, Old Town

Balboa Park

Located in the heart of San Diego, the giant 1,200-acre Balboa Park is home to over 15 museums, including National History Museum, Museum of Man, San Diego Museum of Arts and the world-famous zoo. It’s the largest ‘urban cultural park’ in the world. This place is great as it offers a little something for everyone to enjoy. 

You could easily spend a whole day here hopping from museum to museum and spend time in all of the green spaces. Its also great if you are on a budget as many of the attractions are free to visit and there also countless walking paths and botanical gardens. The botanical gardens were my favourite and is home to 2000 varieties of plants. If I wasn’t limited on time, I could have spent hours inside snapping photos of the plants and even of the domed building itself. 

I loved the Spanish-style architecture. Its unexpected, yet beautiful and was apparently inspired by the Spanish maritime explorer who the park is named after (not Rocky Balboa as I initially assumed – oops). 

Old Town San Diego

From Balboa park, we took an uber to our final stop before heading to the airport – Old Town. With our suitcases in hand, we decided to satisfy our craving for Mexican food and headed to Café Cayote.  Their tacos were insane! We also had a bit of a performance from three jolly Mexican singers who assumed It was my friends birthday.

The Old Town San Diego is a sort of living museum where you can explore the origins of California. The Spanish colonized this part of California in 1769 with a hillside garrison and a Spanish Mission – it’s the site of the FIRST Spanish settlement in the US (pretty cool huh). 


We stayed in a local air bnb to try and save money on the accommodation. It was really modern and pretty inside, but not too sure about the area. When we first came to drop off the suitcases, there were a group of men just sitting on the wall of their houses staring at us. Maybe we were paranoid but all we were thinking was that a group of guys just watched three girls come out of a taxi with a smirk on their faces. 

Either way, we came back later in the evening, paranoid as hell. During dinner, we were even talking about leaving our stuff there and staying in another hotel! With our families and emergency lines on speed dial, we prayed (literally, huddled in a circle to pray) and went inside. 

Okay – so maybe we over-reacted (a little?) and everything was fine… BUT its good to be cautious I guess haha. 

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Review: Constance Ephelia Resort, Seychelles

I enjoyed my honeymoon in one of the most beautiful destinations in the world – the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean. You can read more about my 12-day itinerary here. 

We stayed the first 7 nights in Mahe, in Hotel Constance Ephelia. It was a big resort but somehow, it never felt like it was busy or commercial.

The hotel is a mere 45 minutes’ drive or 25km from the airport with very narrow roads to reach the hotel. As we arrived early, we had breakfast while they were getting our room ready. We then checked in, booked some activities and explored the resort!

Here are some of the highlights of this hotel that I think really makes this resort special and unique from the other resorts in Mahe.

The Room

The resort’s 313 suites and villas are divided into two sides of the peninsula – north beach (226 suites) and south beach (87 villas). The north beach is more secluded and quieter than the south, but the south was where most of the facilities were including the sports centre (which I never used – ooops!), the spa, restaurants and the pools. 

We booked a junior suite in the south beach. All junior suits are housed in 4 horseshoe-shaped clusters of 6 to 7 two-story pavilions, each housing 4 suits (2 on the ground floor and 2 on the first floor). Luckily, we were on the first floor which had a great sea-view. Each cluster of pavilions is catered around a shared swimming pool. 

My suite featured a king-size bed with amazing high-quality cotton linen plus a small sitting area to watch TV. It also included an open-plan bathroom equipped with twin basins, deep bath tub, toilet and a shower. My favourite was our terrace facing the sea 

However, it is easy to access both sides of the hotel via buggies that are always on rotation (and fun to ride on!). The worst-case scenario is waiting 10 minutes for the next buggy but even if you start walking – you can get a ride on the way. 

The Food

Guys… I can’t even tell you how amazing the food was here. Constance Ephelia has 5 restaurants serving cuisine from all over the world. Each restaurant has its own design and culinary concept. 

The main dining venue, Corossol is located in the South Beach near the lobby. This is where breakfast is also served for suite guests and international dinner buffets. Each night had a theme – from tandoori, to pizza and pasta. 

This is Helios Restaurant located in South Beach offering a Mediterranean buffet. Its super casual and chic. The food was SO good!

Adam and Eve restaurant was also located in South Beach, right next to our suite. It serves East Asian flavours with a focus on Malay, Singaporean and Indonesian cuisine. It was so delicious and the dessert… omg the dessert – it was amazing. 

My favourite restaurant was Seselwa, on the North Side, which a la carte dining with a focus on Creole cuisine. It was my first time trying a bat curry! Don’t judge me but its their national dish – so I had to give it a go. It was very bony, but tasted delicious. 

There is also Cyann, the resort’s signature restaurant serving elegant dinners focussing on French-Asian fusion cuisine. We didn’t actually end up going to this one as we wanted to enjoy the buffet 

The Spa

The first thing I think about when I think Constance Ephelia is the resort’s luxuriant tropical garden spa – “U Spa by Constance”. It is the largest spa village in the Indian ocean.

We had a one hour full-body spa session and it was the most sophisticated one I had in my life. It was just so heavenly… 

We loved just hanging in the reflective pool. 

The Watersports

There are so many different activities and water sport you could try at the resort, most of which are offered at North Beach. We tried pedal boating and my hubs kept getting caught in the rocks, while I happily sunbathed on the boat :p Its quite scary how fast you can find yourself in the deep end. 

We also used the hotel snorkling gear to look at the coral and fish. 

Zip Lining 

Constance Ephelia is the only place in the Seychelles where this is available and what a memorable experience it was. 

Evening Entertainment

The resort grounds are huge. I really loved the interior design of the hotel – particular the lobby which is basically a long open-sided walkway under a steep wooden roof. The main area is sounded by a reflecting water pond. It was just an airy design and crated this free space between the interior and exterior. When not eating in the main restaurant, we were sitting by the lively bar singing and dancing to live music or having shisha in the outdoor bar.

Romantic Utopia: 12-day Seychelles itinerary

“It’s as though I’d drunk a bottle of anise and fallen asleep wrapped in a quilt of roses. It pulls me along – and I know I’m drowning” – Garcia Lorca 

This quote really sums how I felt towards Seychelles. It drew me in and before I knew it – I was completely in love. I came here for my honeymoon in 2019 and it was the most perfect 12 days I could have asked for. The white powdery sand beaches, the Seychellois sunsets, the sweltering heat and the bustling palm trees made me fall in love with these islands.  Somehow, this romantic getaway was able to combine culture, luxury, nature and hiking – winning!

Located off East Africa, Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 idyllic islands scattered across the Indian Ocean. If you, like us, enjoy indulgent holidays laden with cultural experiences and water sports – then this 12 day itinerary is ideal for you.

Days 1 – 8: Arrival, Explore Mahe

Days 8 – 11: Explore Praslin and La Digue 

Day 11 – 12 : Departure from Mahe 


Days 1 -3: Relax!

As we went off on our honeymoon the day after the wedding, we really wanted to just spend a few days relaxing on the beach and going to the hotel’s heavenly spa. We stayed at Constance Ephelia Mahe (read my review here) and so spent a few days taking our sweet time to acquaint ourselves with the air of a new country. We explored the resort’s facilities, snorkelled and lounged on the beach! I really enjoyed experiencing Seychelles’ gorgeous transparent waters for myself.

On Day 3, we went to the best massage I’ve ever received. It was insane. 

Day 4: Explore Mahe

Working with the Seychelles government in my full-time job, they told me beforehand not to miss the opportunity to go into the city and explore outside of my resort. So, my husband and I rented a car for the day and went on a full self-guided tour of the island. Here are some top things to see:

– Visit the Tea Factory – we started off driving up to the Tea Factory as it was on the way to the capital. This is definitely worth seeing as they offer free guided tours that allows visitor to see the entire tea-making process, from picking and drying to packing and shipping. Unfortunately, there were no tours the day we went but we still had a walk around and bought some tea for family and friends from the gift shop. 

– The capital city of Victoria. Even though it’s the world’s smallest capital, it was still so rich in culture. We loved walking by colourful houses, going to the bustling markets and just watching the locals go by. Some of the interesting sites include the clock tower that was built as a replica of London’s Big Ben, the Cathedral and the Hindu Temple. I personally LOVED soaking in the atmosphere of the Selwyn-Clarke Market. The local market has everything from fresh seafood to exotic spices and traditional paintings. 

– The lookout at Mission Lodge where Queen Elizabeth II sat for tea

– We then drove to the best beaches in Mahe when we would occasionally get a stretch of beach all to ourselves. It was so easy just driving, parking the car and going for a dip. The best beaches we went to were Beau Vallon, Carana Beach (great sea sport activities), Asne Intendance, Anse Louise and Anse Royale.

Day 5 – Reef Safari

The next day, we got up bright and early to have our breakfast and then went on a booked tour with Mason’s Travels for their trademark Reef Safari to St. Anne National Marine Park. It was absolutely amazing and the day will filled with snorkelling, glass-bottomed boats and Giant Tortoises! Read about my experience in depth here.

Day 6: Relax in the Hotel

We spent the next day relaxing on the beach. We enjoyed the variety of food in the buffet and the variety of sea sports! We tried paddle boarding for the first time, which was fun. I think my hubs found it a little more challenging as he kept getting stuck in the rocks 😛 Practise makes perfect…

Day 7: Zip-Lining

We wanted to continue relaxing on the beach so we spent another day in the hotel. My husband and I wanted to try zip-lining and our hotel, Constance Ephelia was the only place in the Seychelles where this is available and what a memorable experience it was! After a steep uphill climb, we were greeted with the most beautiful panoramic views to the beach. It was so adrenaline pumping and exhilarating experience! 

Day 8: Take the Ferry to Praslin

After enjoying breakfast in the hotel, we took a taxi to the port, ready for the next island on the itinerary – Praslin! We took the ferry with Cat Cocos and the journey was around 90 minutes. Guys – I have experienced a lot of boat rides in my short time on this earth – but THIS, this ride from Mahe to Praslin… I have no words. It started off well, but then the boat began to nosedive over mammoth waves. Its similar to a kid in a bathtub playing with a toy boat and rocking it side to side and front to back as hard as possible – that’s what we had to devour. Sorry I have no pictures of this event – I was too busy holding on for dear life. 

Few tips that might help you though – whatever you do, DO NOT GET AN AISLE SEAT. People might get sick and run to the bathroom. Just don’t do it…

Once we reached land (thank goodness), we took a taxi to Coco de Mer Hotel. This is located in the beautiful south-west region of the island, right on Anse Bois de Rose. We checked in and spent the day enjoying the two magnificent pools – one in the unique shape of a Coco de Mer nut and the other perched on a granite outcrop with fabulous views of the ocean. We also booked our tour for the next day at the hotel – again with Mason Travel! 

Coco de Mer hotel in Praslin
The infinity pool at Coco De Mer Hotel

Day 9: Day trip to La Digue

We woke up early and had the breakfast buffet from the hotel – it was SO delicious.

The van came to pick us up along with a few other guests from our hotel and dropped us off to the port where we took a short 15-minute ferry ride to La Digue.

This is the true paradise guys – THIS is what everyone imagines when they think about an exotic trip. As soon as we arrived, we rented a bicycle from one of the many rental places you can find close to the jetty. It was really romantic and was a great way to see the island at your own pace! We explored the island and discovered some beautiful hidden beaches and caves. The most famous beaches over there are Grand Anse and Anse Source d’Argent – they had sparkling blue waters, white powdery beaches dotted with Seychelles’ characteristic black rocks. 

La Digue will most definitely not let you down – Please see my blog post here for more photos of our day trip to La Digue. 

Day 10: Explored Praslin

We rented a car for the day so that we could explore Praslin a little better and swim in their best beaches. We started the day by driving to the UNESCO World Hertiage site, Vallee de Mai Nature Reserve.  It is one of only two places in the world where the rare coco de mer palm grows in its natural state (the other neing nearby Curieuse island). The reserve is also a birding hotspot where you can see the Seychelles endangered black parrot (if you’re lucky) and the bulbul. We recommend taking a private guide for a 2 hour guided walk through the forest – otherwise you’ll miss so much if you go it alone! 

We then made our way to the famous Cote d’Or Beach in the afternoon. Its original name is Anse Volbert and is the most popular beach on the island (and the longest!). It just had the most idyllic white powdered sandy beach.

We wanted to see sunset at Anse Lazio – one of the top 10 in the world’s most beautiful beaches. Luckily, we caught the sunset just in time and it was just so quiet and picturesque. The area around this beautiful Praslin beach is privately owned by one family for a few generations now, but they have now opened this beach to the public for free. 

We headed back to the hotel in time for dinner. We were treated with dinner entertainment as a singer performed with his guitar. It was just the perfect evening with delicious food, acoustic singer and the sound of the waves a few feet away from us.

Day 11: Back to Mahe 

To be on the safe side, we decided to take a flight back back to Mahe before departing the Islands – just in case of delays. As my husband is really into aeroplanes, and we experience the ferry there, we wanted to try something new and take a plane back to the main island. At first, I thought it was unnecessary to pay almost three times more than if we were to take the ferry, but boy im glad we did! I never went on such a small plane before and it was super cool sitting right behind the pilot – we were basically flying the plane! It was stunning seeing the islands from above. 

We finally arrived after the short 20 minute journey and took at a taxi to Kempinski Hotel. We spent the day relaxing and walking by the beach. 

In the afternoon, we wanted to do a gentle hike to “Mount Kempinski” which promised spectacular views from the summit. We requested the complimentary transfer to the summit trail from the front desk. It took around 20 minutes walking through the dense tropical jungle to reach the top of the mountain. It was so worth it as the views were even better than promised.

Day 12: Back to London

Every trip has to come to end so the next day, we took the taxi to Mahe airport.

Everything about the Seychelle was perfect. It was the perfect first 12 days of marriage life and I would most definitely recommend this place as a honeymoon. 

Do you have any questions about travelling to Seychelles that I didn’t answer? Be sure to leave them in the comments, and I’ll get back to you as quickly as possible 🙂