Monday, 10 August 2015

Top things to do in New Zealand ft Topdeck! - Skydive, Bungee, Kayaking, Zorbing & White Water Rafting.

A few weeks ago, I set off on a journey with Topdeck to explore New Zealand for 17 days on their kiwi experience. For the longest time I wanted to explore that part of the world, I mean, it's the furthest place you can go to from England!

I was lucky enough to get to do some awesome things, in particular, I got to do my first ever bungee jump and sky dive! I had so many people asking which companies I went with and what my experiences were like, so I decided to do a quick little post explaining the two awesome things, and if you should or shouldn't go for it!

Should I Sky Dive/Bungee Jump in New Zealand or Australia?

Bungee Jumping:
It's pretty much down to everyones own preference, and if you are like me and are travelling to both of those countries, you have an option of so so many different places. The most popular and well known places to do a bungee jump I would say are the ones in Queenstown, or the Nevis. I'm not 100% sure of the options in Australia but I know that the Bungee was all started commercially in New Zealand and is probably the most well known place of the most incredible views and safety.. so for me I had to do it in NZ! Topdeck provide so many different excursions and activities that you can do on top of the trip itself, so we had a few different options. I decided to do my bungee jump in Queenstown and I absolutely loved it!


Skydiving in Australia that most people will know of is at a place called Mission Beach. I decided to pick New Zealand as for me, I wanted something that wasn't a beach view. I also wanted to really get my adventure and outdoor activity stuff done in New Zealand, so for me it was always going to be done here. I originally wanted to get it done in Queenstown, however due to the weather (I was there in winter!) it was cancelled twice. Little lovely known fact about New Zealand.. the weather is the second most unpredictable weather location in the world. Yeah, so pack a jumper and umbrella in your bag no matter what! I chose to do mine in Nelson in the end and the view was absolutely spectacular. It was a pretty quiet day when we did it and we had a quick 20-30 minute window of good weather so I ended up jumping out on my own! Usually theres a few of you packed into a plane, but it was just me, my skydive buddy and a camera woman. It was literally the best thing I have ever done in my life, and I absolutely recommend paying the extra bit of money for the video and photos, I constantly show other travellers them all the time and it's something I can have forever!


White water Rafting in Rotorua.
Whilst on the Topdeck trip, you really do make an awesome group of friends and we all decided we wanted to go white water rafting. Roturua white water rafting has the highest waterfall you can go down commercially in the whole of NZ and as there was a group of us we thought 'hey, why not!?'
I'm not a massive fan of water, it was really really cold and to be honest, we capsized. The guy told me about 1 in every 50 groups will capsize and that you know.. it's not all that common. We had awesome luck cause thats exactly what we did! It was pretty scary and a massive shock, but it wasn't dangerous or anything. The photos we got were absolutely hilarious and if you guys drop by Rotorua, a definite to do with a bunch of mates is this - we had an awesome time!


Zorbing or Ozo-ing in Rotorua.
Zorb and ozo are two different things from what I have gathered. Many people will have heard of zorbing as being placed in those big plastic balls and running around or being pushed down a hill. Ozo is something a little different, and for me, 100000x better. Myself and my really good friend on the trip Kerry decided on a pretty dreadful and dreary rainy day, to pop ourselves in a massive ball full of warm water together and be pushed down a zig zag track. I'm not kidding when I say this was the funniest thing in the whole entire world and my go pro footage is nothing but silence from me because I was laughing so hard I couldn't even breathe.


Kayaking in bay of islands.
One of the cheapest and coolest activities we did on the trip was hire kayaks on go around the bay of islands. It was really really cheap, and we headed out to explore as the guy who rented them to us told us that there were Orcas swimming fairly close in. It was such a wonderful experience to see these animals so close up and a memory I will cherish forever. Kayaking is one of my favourite things to do whilst away and the Bay of Islands in New Zealand is really an awesome destination to do it in!


All of the activities and excursions I chose were through Topdeck except for the kayaking. They simply send around a sheet on your bus where you pop your name down saying the price and which activity you do and they book it all for you! I really really LOVED this aspect ofTopdeckopdeck as it took the trouble out of trying to do it all yourself and they always pick the best and most legit companies to go through as well!

Would you guys ever doing any of these activities and if you have, where did you do them? I'd LOVE to hear you stories!!

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Thursday, 16 July 2015

What to pack for backpacking - Electricals.. Camera, Laptop & Accessories

Having a lot of electronics whilst backpacking is an absolute nightmare. More often than not, most people will definitely tell you to bring as little as possible, and unless its an iphone or maybe even a cheapo tablet, electronics are not worth bringing. I teamed up with Topdeck on my amazing trip to New Zealand, and part of what they wanted me to fill you guys in on was what to bring.. and this part is the electrical stuff! Topdeck had so many crazy activities I took part in such as bungee jumping, skydiving, zorbing and white water rafting so for me, capturing it and uploading it was a pretty vital part of travelling!

The Bag: F stop, the perfect bag for holding camera kit!

For myself, being able to capture my trip was not only necessary for work and content purposes, but I really really wanted to be able to have some beautiful shots that I could look at and really really remember just how beautiful it was. I haven't got a super hefty kit with me, I think my whole smaller bag is around 7kg including the laptop, however on top of having a 12kg backpack on my back.. it is a pretty big ask for me to carry both.. but I definitely think it is worth it!

Here is the lowdown on what I have with me..

The Compact Camera / The Perfect Vlogging Companion

Canon g7x

This is hands down the best compact camera I have ever used! This camera is what a lot of the youtubers use for their blogging nowadays and I can see why, it's incredible video quality is awesome. But the actual camera quality ia actually surprisingly amazing and all my friends IU've made on the trip have commented just how shocked they are that a small camera like this can produce such beautiful images.

Flip out camera screen, perfect for selfies with friends, perfect for vlogging! / Unbelivable picture quality / So many different settings, Aperture, F stop, Exposure.. you name it! Can all be done on this nifty little bit of kit

It's slightly bulkier than a standard compact / It's not crazy cheap, so you'll be wary about dropping it etc, not always great when travelling, sometimes it's easier to have a camera you don't mind dropping!

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The Perfect Accessory

Joby Gorilla Pod

This is a wonderful little accesory which is not only compact to fit into any kind of bag or pocket, but I've used it countless times. Perfect for long exposures where your camera needs to be at an angle and incredibly still, or even just taking a group picture with your friends! I used it to stick into thesand a few times too.. it's just a great thing to have and it's incredibly affordable!


THE Camera for those 'unreal' shots

Fujifilm XE-2
Lenses / Fuji 35mm 1.4 , Samyang Fisheye 2.8

One of my photographer friends bought this nifty little thing and I had no idea at just how powerful such a small camera can have, to the point I think I'm actually going to get rid of my SLR canon in favour of this beauty. The quality is astounding! It's not the smallest thing in the world but my goodness, it's worth lugging around the extra weight!

Pros: Takes amazing pictures and is much cheaper than an SLR / Will attract less attention whilst travelling as it doesn't look expensive and isn't a canon or nikon / The lenses are also compact and the whole kit fits really well into my little backpacking set up

Cons: It's still a pretty expensive camera to take with you whilst backpacking, especially if you end up in hostels without lockers! / It isnt really really light, by bag always is pretty heavy when I take my full kit and because it's expensive you get wary of taking it places such as the beach, a boat etc


The one everyone has


I decided to get a go pro for the pure reason that I knew I would be doing stuff that really would need a go pro. Such as Scuba Diving, Snorkelling, Bungee Jumping.. things that go pro's are the only camera that will really be able to capture the moment! I have a few accessories with my such as a head strap, chest strap and hand strap.. just incase! I got the hero 3 as there was a really good deal on ebay but I'm no expert as to the differences between them all, have a little look at what you want from your go pro and go from there!

Pros: Underwater camera and video / Can attach on different mounts for different shots - perfect for adventure activities / the most compact thing ever / Actually great quality and the fisheye gets so so much in!

Cons: Expensive and small = easy to lose, easy to have it be stolen! / Kind of annoying to charge constantly along with my million other electronics! / Only worth getting if you really want to use features like underwater features, otherwise just use a normal camera


The one thats pretty much unncessary

Polaroid Mini 8

A polaroid is pretty much one of those things you can go without wilst backpacking, but I really REALLY wanted to have polaroids to stick on my wall. It's not too crazy to shove into my bag but it's yeah.. annoying. Maybe buy one of these instead!


The one you NEED if you have an iphone
.. seriously.

izzi iphone 5 case
4 in 1 lenses.. 2 x Telephoto lense / Macro lense / Fish eye lense / Wide Angle Lense

Theres so much I need to say about how amazing this case is and every single person who looks at my phone and I explain what it does literally thinks it's the best thing that ever happened. Perfect for traveling, especially if you prefer just to snap away on your iphone! The quality is amazing and the fish eye is literaly what I use every single time for getting the best little iphone snaps whilst on my travels!


The CHEAP laptop


This is my old laptop that I bought off ebay for about £200 last year whilst travelling. Iknew I wanted a light camera and something that I wouldn't mind if it broke whilst I'm away. This is it. A cheapo little laptop that is really annoying as I now have a macbook and windows is just annoying and it's not as light as I would like it to be. But it doesn't the job and if it did break at least I wouldn't be aying goodbye to £1,000!


The internet companion

Three Mobile Dongle

Three do this wonderful thing called 'Home Abroad' where you can use your phone, like internet, calls text, just like you are england for free in lots of different countries. The best thing I ever did was switch to three, and as my mobile internet has been working in NZ and Aus, so has this little dongle! Perfect for blogging on the go, it works amazingly by connecting to the internet just like my phone does and it is around £10 a month? Perfect for blogger travellers! I would also recommend getting an actual 3 mobile phone contract, which does the exact same thing. The amount of people who were shoc ked that I was able to use my phone like I was at home in AUS and NZ is crazy - so many people don't actually know the perks of switching to three and it's also available in loads of popular locations like France & Spain!

Do you guys have any other electronic bits that you think are vital to backpacking?!

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Monday, 6 July 2015

Kavita Does Croatia - #SummerStartsNow with H&M pt 2

It feels like it was forever ago now, but back in May I was lucky enough to shoot an awesome campaign with H&M called #summerstartsnow and I was able to get some beautiful pictures on the wonderful island of Hvar, as well as rock some of my favourite pieces from H&M this summer!

I wanted to something a little simplistic for this shot, and as myself and my boyfriend were heading out to dinner later that night, I thought it was the perfect opoortunity to showcase one of the trends I absolutely love.. wearing something suitable for the day and night!

The bralet is actually a bikini top believe it or not! I remember walking into the store and seeing on the mannequin styled with a bright pair of palazzo pants and thinking 'I really need that outfit in my life' ..

Unofrtunately as luck would have it, the printed palazzo pants had actually sold out, however I ended up spotting something I have wanted for the longest time.. a really great quality pair of plain black pants!
They look really awesome with this bralet top (which also fits amazingly and is super flattering) and it's one of those outfits I was happy to walk around with f=during the day with my big sunnies on, but they pop a little bit more make up on and heels during the night to get the most out of it!

Travelling to Croatia was one of those trips I took with only hand luggage, so it's times like this where having outfit options than can double up for day and night is key! I only took the pieces I was taking for my H&M shoot and had more than enough outfits options for my 4 day stay which was surprising but reassuring that yes.. it can be done!

This post is in collaboration with H&M.

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Saturday, 4 July 2015

Getting a new look with Schwarzkopf LIVE

Hey guys! So one of the big projects I've been working on this year is the Schwarzkopf LIVE Lookbook! You may have seen the advert on TV before New Girl on e4 including me and some of my favourite other bloggers. The day was unbelievably fun and the Schwarzkopf team and I worked together to think of ideas to give my look a little bit of a refresh.

I kind of wanted to do something really different but at the same time, really keep my signature look. Ombré Luxe is something that not only do I feel is very me, but it suits my skin tone and really brings out my best features!

I worked with Schwarzkopf LIVE in the studio on a how-to video to help you guys achieve the look for yourself at home! I am the biggest advocate for at-home hair dye, and have used Schwarzkopf LIVE for the longest time. My top tips include…

1. Using a toothbrush to create the gradient ombré effect.
2. Using the LIVE Color XXL Blonde Toner Mousse to keep the blonde from going brassy.
3. For a subtler ombré effect, take time to work the lightening mixture from the ends-up rather than rushing!

I'm so, so happy with my hair and it's something that I'm going to continue doing throughout the rest of the year. It's definitely made me feel a little bit more adventurous and who knows, maybe I'll add a little bit of colour later on!!

This post is in collaboration with Schwarzkopf

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Saturday, 13 June 2015

What to pack for Backpacking: 3 months in New Zealand, Australia and Asia

So theres been a pretty big absense here on the blog and theres always excuses from my end but I actually have a pretty legit one right now.. I'm currently backpacking in New Zealand!

I'm away with a tour company called Topdeck, who were amazing enough to bring me along on a trip and experience everything first hand. I am doing the Kiwi experience tour and am on my 7th day out of 17! I have already done so much (yes, that includes bungee jumping!!!!!) and theres so much more left to do!

I decided that I would write out a plain and simple backpacking guide. My little 'heres the things you should probably pack' and some more tips for either bloggers or just people that need to have a little bit of internet around on their travels.

The bags.
I am currently carrying two bags on this trip with me. My main bag on my back is 12kg and my front bag is around 8kg. Thats a whopping 20kg collectively (almost half my own weight) which is a pretty massive amount of weight to have on you constantly for 3 months. The great thing is genuinely (depensing on how much you are walking around, if you're doing mostly touristy things or really getting off the beaten path) you pretty much tend to just have the bags when going to and from airports or buses, so it's not too bad.

My big bag is Quechua and I grabbed mine from decathlon for about £60 I think. I have a 60L and theres still quite a bit of space to shove stuff in for the rest of my trip so it's a pretty good size for 3 months!

The smaller bag is an F stop, and the green one actually its into the F stop too. I'll talk in more detail about the green one later on but it's essentially a camera bag! This blue F stop is awesome, It has so many pockets and what not but it also has a place for your laptop which I have taken along with me.

Having two bags seems so bizarre but for me, having a big carry on with my fragile bits is pretty essntial for work, and you get over the whole 'Do I look like an idiot' vibe pretty quickly.. there will ALWAYS be someone who has way more stuff than you – so don't even think twice! That being said, do try to bring as little as possible, for your backs sake!

The main bits.
Clothes inside a 25L watertight compression bag / Microfibre Towel / Medical kit Four pairs of shoes: Running shoes, Flip flops, Asos basic sandals & Birkenstocks / Dry bag with 5 Bikinis in / Journal /
Marmot Wind breaker goretex coat / Sunglasses case / Wildfox makeup bag for all beauty bits / Old laptop

The footwear.
All I took last time on my 5 week asia trip was birkenstocks and flip flops. I wore my birkenstocks religiously and flip flops on the beach if needed! I decided to bring trainers as I'm doing more hiking stuff – plus I'm in New Zealand in winter! The asos sandals are just pretty little sandals that I grabbed as a different option to my birkenstocks as I'm away for quite a bit longer!

The medical kit.
You can put literally anything you think you will need in your mdeical it. As im off to asia afterward I've got some Doxyxyline malaria tablets, as well as essentials such as ibuprofen, paracetamol and diarrhea tablets. I also have tampons, bandages and plasters, as well as some lemsip and sinex relief.. especially needed when you get the travel flu!

The travel documents.
Topdeck provided me with all my acoomodation and stuff sorted which is PERFECT for first time travellers or people who need a little guidance. They have an itinerary with all our extra activities which comes in this sweet zip up, which is great to keep all your bits together like your passport!
I also grabbed this journal from paperchase as I liked how plain it was. I didn't write one last time but saw lots of my friends doing it and its a great way to document trips and also pop plane tickets and things in!

The beauty bag.
There is as little make up as possible in my bag, and throughout my trip I will probably not be wearing much of it at all. I grabbed a cheap little faux naked palette from primark for £2 as on nights out it's quite nice to make a little bit more of an effort! I also grabbed my old mac foundation that I never really wear anymore, as well as two mini benefit masacaras as they're travel friendly and also don't really get used much. Two hand sanitisers as they get used up pretty quickly travelling, as well as tissues just incase of emergencies! A razor just for standard girly upkeep, as well as a few bobbles and grips (that will get lost, no doubt!) Mini shampoo and conditioner – if I run out I can always just buy more but this is just perfect for space saving!

'Other bits' that I think are important
Microfibre towel: Really great as it dries quickly so if you have a shower in the morning and need to pack up your bags asap it's handy – as well as great for space saving.
Travel Torch: something you you will never know if you need so is always great to have and again – the smaller the better for space!
Travel adaptor plugs: A massive essential for travelling! I always have quite a few on me incase some go missing just as you pack up and leave places, but I also have a european one just incase.. especially if you have a long layover on the way back through a european country and need to rechearge!!!
USB charger: this one is really handy if you only have one plug socket and you have friends who need to charge iphones!
Three different locks: For lockers in hostels, I have a large and small numbered locker, as well as a key one. Just incase of literally anything, I've already lent my friend the one with the key as her lock with the numbers ending up changing its code and now she doesn't trust it!
Two portable phone chargers: One for everyday travelling is the smaller one, gives around one full charge. The bigger one gives I think maybe 5 full charges, and is for just other uses such as if my phone doesnt reach the charger in the hostel or if I'm sat on a bus for hours!
Spare iphone charger: for obvious reasons
Spare headphones and in earbuds: incase my headphones break and for loud buses or planes. I also have a sleep mask that my friend has so wan't pictured!
Two pairs of sunglasses: Will probably dissapear at some point but grabed two pairs that I wanted!
USB extender: perfect if your plug isn't near your bed in a hostel, already used this so many times!

For the colder weather
Like I've already mentioned, I'm away in New Zealand and Aus in winter and NZ right now is FREEZING. The windbreaker is pretty awesome for hikes and the rain, but I layer underneath for warmth. A pair of jeans is essential for every day in colder places and I also have two pairs of thermal leggings (which are AMAZING) and the gloves are again standard for the colder weather. I didnt bring a beanie so purchased this pretty little NZ one here.. would say this is a pretty big essential for the cold weather too!

A Waterproof watch with the date and time on.
This cheap'o casio is perfect. It's waterproof and has the date and time which is great if you're travelling as you never really know! It's also incredibly cheap!

That concludes all the bits I've brough with me except for electronics which will be more in depth in the next post!
Please leave me any comments letting me know if theres anything else you would take or have taken and if any of you are off backpacking any time soon I would love to hear about it!!

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