The Style Mermaid by Kisty Mea

The Style Mermaid | Kisty Mea • The Lifestyle Benefits Of Riding A Bicycle
If your goals in life at the moment include getting fit, being more eco-friendly and generally having more fun, then riding a bicycle might just be the answer for you. Cycling is already the number one way to get around in a number of countries, but it doesn’t just have to be for transportation. In fact, there are numerous ways that riding a bicycle can give you a more positive lifestyle.
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Improves your state of mind
Unlike sitting in a traffic jam behind the wheel of a car, or being packed into a crammed train, riding a bike can be a great way to relieve stress. Although some people worry about the dangers of cycling around traffic, you won’t be worried about this when you are feeling the fresh air rushing past you. Regular riding will help relieve stress and make you feel more relaxed.
Boosts your fitness
It’s not just your mind that will benefit from cycling - your body will noticeably feel more rewarded too. It’s a great way to burn off calories, and if you can tie it in with your commute to actually go somewhere then even better. The good thing is that it is also relatively easy in comparison to running, as no stress is placed on your muscles and joints.
It’s cheap!
Cycling means you won’t have to fill your car with gas or pay for train tickets - you’ll just be using the power of your legs! Although buying the bicycle requires an initial payment, if you look for a good 0% finance on mountain bikes deal, where you can spread the cost over a year or so, if becomes very affordable and the costs will end up paying for themselves with the money that you manage to save elsewhere.
Good for those around you
Cycling means one less noisy, polluting car on the road. If everyone decided to get on their bicycle, think about how fewer jams there would be! The world instantly becomes a more enjoyable, friendlier place when people are riding bikes. The pollution levels also drop - something which is a real problem in the world at the moment. Cleaner air means a better quality of life for you and those around you.
Speed
It’s often just quicker to get on your bike, especially if you live in a city where traffic jams are frequent. You can speed past the traffic whistling to yourself along the way while the stressed out drivers wonder if they are ever going to get to where they need to go.
It’s good fun
Most importantly, cyclists will tell you that once they start riding a bike it quickly becomes a passion for them. Whether they like to go out into the country with their mountain bikes and cycle down steep muddy hills, or if they just like to ride on the roads to and from work, it can provide much enjoyment for people.
So why not try and give it a go? 
{photo credit}

The Lifestyle Benefits Of Riding A Bicycle

If your goals in life at the moment include getting fit, being more eco-friendly and generally having more fun, then riding a bicycle might just be the answer for you. Cycling is already the number one way to get around in a number of countries, but it doesn’t just have to be for transportation. In fact, there are numerous ways that riding a bicycle can give you a more positive lifestyle.

Read more

The Style Mermaid | Kisty Mea • The world is a magnificent place ready to be explored and there is no better feeling than setting off on your incredible journey in great comfort and unique style.
This is what Gipsy Dharma believes in and I couldn’t agree more. One of the universal truths in life is that we feel good when we’re comfortable from the inside and out. 
Gipsy Dharma is a handmade, unique clothing and footwear brand who is passionate about simplicity and comfort. We all know that looking good and feeling good is important, and often result in a positive self perception and outlook in life. This is what Gipsy Dharma wants to achieve in their clothing and footwear: to feel and appreciate beauty on the inside and what surrounds us. 
Their products are quite ideal for the free spirited and little pixies, but my personal favorite is the Antique Turquoise Blue Leather Belt Skirt (the one on the middle) because I can totes wear it for my upcoming beach trip!

The world is a magnificent place ready to be explored and there is no better feeling than setting off on your incredible journey in great comfort and unique style.

This is what Gipsy Dharma believes in and I couldn’t agree more. One of the universal truths in life is that we feel good when we’re comfortable from the inside and out. 

Gipsy Dharma is a handmade, unique clothing and footwear brand who is passionate about simplicity and comfort. We all know that looking good and feeling good is important, and often result in a positive self perception and outlook in life. This is what Gipsy Dharma wants to achieve in their clothing and footwear: to feel and appreciate beauty on the inside and what surrounds us. 

Their products are quite ideal for the free spirited and little pixies, but my personal favorite is the Antique Turquoise Blue Leather Belt Skirt (the one on the middle) because I can totes wear it for my upcoming beach trip!

The Style Mermaid | Kisty Mea • YHA Boggle Hole
I think my favorite youth hostel in England deserves a post of its own. I absolutely love the other YHA hostels, but Boggle Hole was unique on its own. 
In my previous post, you’ve seen what Boggle Hole looks like and admit it, the house doesn’t look much. But that’s because the magic happens on the inside! So, let me give you a tour~[[MORE]]

When you enter Boggle Hole, you’ll see this counter filled with candies and sweets. Quite frankly, the counter looks more like a sweet shop than a hostel concierge. +1 for selling ice cream!!!!!!!! :3
Anyhoo, the hostel has this pirate theme going on. This is because the hostel was located right beside the sea and a couple of minutes away from Robin Hood’s Bay. The village was named after Robin Hood because there were legends that the famous outlaw encountered French pirates here. The pirates, of course, surrendered and Robin Hood returned the loot to the people of the village.  

The place is really ideal for kids because they get to do things that involves imagination and not technology. I believe this is the room where they held their puppet show.

"I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky."

This is the laundry room and I love that wooden hanger thing. 

The Poop Deck! Hehehe!

This is my room for the night. The room has a view of the sea, which I thought was really nice. Close the window when you go to sleep because it’s awfully cold in the morning.


This is the basement and where you’ll eat a scrumptious full English Breakfast. 


The mermaid and pirate mascot of the hostel

We also went to the woods to check their bonfire site. Check out those cute wooden seats for the kids. 
So what do you think? :) I know it’s a hostel but Peta, the manager of the place, and her staff did an amazing job because it is one of the unique YHA hostels I’ve visited. It feels so cozy to live stay here, too! I’m definitely adding this to my home inspiration for my future home. :) 
YHA Boggle HoleMill Beck, Fylingthorpe, Whitby, YO22 4UQ T: 0845 371 9504 { Book Online }

YHA Boggle Hole

I think my favorite youth hostel in England deserves a post of its own. I absolutely love the other YHA hostels, but Boggle Hole was unique on its own. 

In my previous post, you’ve seen what Boggle Hole looks like and admit it, the house doesn’t look much. But that’s because the magic happens on the inside! So, let me give you a tour~

Read more

The Style Mermaid | Kisty Mea • Youth Hostels? What to Expect?
This is going to be a really long entry but I guarantee that it’s going to be helpful for you, my little wanderlust. 
If you have been following my Big Blog Exchange trip, then you’ll know that I only spent one day in each of the places I’ve visited. I slept in 9 different Youth Hostels or YHA (A stands for Association) in 10 days. I must admit that an overnight stay is way too short to provide a proper review for each hostels I’ve visited, but at least, I can provide an overall feedback! :)
But before I begin, let me just clarify that YHA gave me a private room throughout my sponsored stay. Occasionally, I would share rooms with Lucy but she was my companion throughout the trip so I don’t think that counts. The real hostel experience (sharing rooms with a stranger and the like) happened when I extended my trip.
Now, shall we begin with the review? I promise it’ll be really informative!
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Hostel Rooms


Top: My room in YHA London Central / Bottom: Our room in YHA Ambleside + my mess
At YHA, you’ll be sleeping in a bunk bed with white sheets and green blankets (YHA’s official color). Sometimes, they would cover the sheets for you. Sometimes, you’ll have to do it for yourself. In the room, you’ll have your own cabinet to store your valuables and a personal bed light with an electric plug/power point. I like the personal electric plug because I don’t have to worry about the other guests stealing my phone or something (just a precautionary measure) because it’s just within the vicinity of my bed. 
While the room looks pretty basic, all of them were clean and cozy. In fact, I didn’t have a hard time settling down in any of the hostels because they all look welcoming and presentable. 
Due to the architecture of the building, the layout of the rooms were different in each hostels. Some rooms have their own bathroom, some don’t, but rest assured that all of the rooms will have their own sink. I think the reason why there’s a sink in every room is so that you can still freshen up even if you can’t use the common bathroom yet. Anyway, hostels like the YHA Stratford and Manchester have rooms with an attached bathroom and toilets, but the latter was much smaller. Then the room they gave me at YHA Oxford has a small balcony and TV. While the Wilderhope Manor has a Bridal Suite because the hostel is often used as a wedding venue.
There’s no bar fridge, but you can deposit your food in their self-service kitchen. Just make sure you properly label your food.
Hostel (Self-)Service

YHA London Central’s Beauty Room
With the exception of the London hostels, most of them offer breakfast for five quid. I’m not going to lie but I absolutely love, love, love the ones with breakfast because they were always offering a full English breakfast and that means bacon and scrambled eggs for me! :3
One meal I loved the most was this poached chicken that I ordered from YHA Stratford’s chef. I forgot the name of the meal but I loved it to bits! Too bad the other hostels were not offering it. /sad 
Some of the hostels have computers and wi-fi (not for free unless you’re a YHA member), but I can’t remember which. I am certain London Central and Manchester has one. 
Oh! They’re also partnered with a lot of tours and sights. So if you’re interested in watching a show or joining a group tour, the front desk will be able to assist you and even offer you a discount! :) 
Questions Answered


My room in YHA Stratford and its bathroom
It’s my first time to stay at a hostel and I didn’t really know what to expect. I used to have so many questions about hostels. Are they safe? Are they clean? Will I share a room with the opposite sex? Those are just some of the questions that I was able to personally answer. 
Are the beds comfy? Yes, they were! I never had a hard time sleeping! But for better comfort, I highly recommend you sleep at the top bunk.
Are the bathrooms clean? Yes, but my least favorite bathroom was YHA Ambleside because it was a shared bathroom where 8-9 rooms (2-4 guest in each rooms) have access. But the bathrooms and rooms were still spic-and-span!
Do they offer free breakfast? No. Majority of them, except for the hostels at London, offer a full English breakfast for five quid. Personally, I wish YHA London Central would offer a English breakfast since they have a big kitchen (the self-catering kitchen).  
Is it safe to stay at a hostel? To be honest, I felt safe throughout my stay. They have CCTVs installed and most of the hostels use a key card system. 
Will people steal my stuff if I leave it at the hostel? I can’t vouch for every backpacker but I did leave my locker unlocked for most of my trip and no one stole anything (of course, there was nothing valuable in there). But don’t follow my footsteps! Remain vigilant, don’t leave valuables unattended. Get your own padlock! ;)
Will I share a room with the opposite sex? This depends on the hostel. I’m not sure if YHA offer such kind of set-up, but there are hostels that do. Be sure to check before you book.
What happens if someone’s snoring so loud? Use an ear plug. I’m glad that the girls I’ve shared rooms with were mindful with the noise they’re making, especially during the morning when some are still sleeping. 
What are the things you need to bring? Kindly research this because it’s different for each hostels, but with YHA, you can rent towels, padlocks, earplugs and umbrellas for one or two pounds. You can see the full list of amenities on their websites.
Why should I stay at the hostel? I get you. Who doesn’t want to stay at a hotel? I would, if I could! But given the expenses to travel, I just find it ridiculous to stay at a hotel for $200 per night (the average rate at Agoda for London).
If your definition of traveling is to spend the whole day outside, roaming around the city, then stay at a hostel. If you’re visiting for a special occasion, like honeymoon or something, then go for a hotel… but still check with the hostel if they offer private rooms. 
Hostel Demystified
Since each hostel is different, here’s a brief review + lots and lots of photos.  


YHA London Central Pros: It’s located in Central London (duh!). They have an elevator. Love the cozy mood in their common room. About three blocks away from the nearest Tube. Alternatively, you can ride Bus 453 and you’ll have your own tour of Oxford/Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square and Big Ben! Oh, they also have a beauty room that I discovered on my last day of stay!Cons: No breakfast, but there’s a huge self-service kitchen.




YHA Stratford Pros: This place looks amazing! The room they gave me was pretty big and comes with its own bathroom and sink. +1 for that poached chicken I ordered! Cons: A bit far from the town central. I took a cab at 11PM because I was freezing to death and my jet lag was starting to kick in. It was a quick and safe ride though. 



YHA Wilderhope Manor Pros: You get to live in a really old manor. Hill-side view! The manor may look old on the inside, the Bridal Suite looks pretty new and modern. Definitely a perfect place to do weddings and digital detox. Oh, and I did not experience any paranormal activity during my stay. ;)Cons: In the middle of nowhere? No signal for Three mobile, my choice of network throughout my stay. 
YHA Manchester Pros: Very near MOSI! Manchester is somewhat a small city, so you won’t have a problem roaming around. Cons: I can’t think of any, but tall people might not like their small bathrooms? I’m petite, so that’s not really a problem for me! 

YHA Ambleside Pros: Overlooking Lake Windmere and is located beside Ambleside Pier. Place was full but quite peaceful. Cons: Rooms may be a little small for taller people, but that’s just what I think. Not enough shared bathrooms. 


YHA York Pros: They gave us a really spacious room with a big bathroom. The place looks really big! Cons: A 15/20-minute walk from the town central. It started to drizzle when I was on my way back to the hostel, and I’m not gonna lie, I was cursing because I didn’t have any brolly. The rain wasn’t that bad, it’s the cold wind that was literally killing me. I thought I’m going to get sick! But that’s not the hostel’s fault!  


YHA Boggle Hole Pros: My favorite hostel because of the quirky feel. Outside, the hostel may not look much, but visit inside and you’ll be taken to a different world. Maybe I’m exaggerating but I absolutely love this place. You’ll definitely be a kid at heart here. Cons: The hostel is a hidden gem, which is a good thing, but I absolutely have no idea how to get there by commute. May not be ideal for the disabled. 




YHA WhitbyPros: The place’s huge and has a small garden with an amazing view of the town and Whitby Abbey. Suitable for the disabled. Cons: I can’t think of any, since I did not stay here. The manager gave me a tour of the place, including here and there history of the house and the surroundings. :)  





YHA Oxford Pros: Located near the train and bus station. Cons: None.
YHA Oxford Street Pros: Very near Oxford Street Station. I really like the room they gave me because I can see the London Eye from afar.  Cons: No elevators for the rooms, no breakfast but there’s a small self-service kitchen. 
Overall Experience
You might think I’m just being biased because this trip was sponsored by Hostelling International, but I really had a fantastic time staying at their hostels. Most of the staff I met were very accommodating, including the team at YHA Whitby! And the guests I met were also really nice. :) 
For more information about the Youth Hostels in England and Wales, please visit their website at http://www.yha.org.uk/. And if you have any other questions, feel free to ask on the comment box below. 

Youth Hostels? What to Expect?

This is going to be a really long entry but I guarantee that it’s going to be helpful for you, my little wanderlust. 

If you have been following my Big Blog Exchange trip, then you’ll know that I only spent one day in each of the places I’ve visited. I slept in 9 different Youth Hostels or YHA (A stands for Association) in 10 days. I must admit that an overnight stay is way too short to provide a proper review for each hostels I’ve visited, but at least, I can provide an overall feedback! :)

But before I begin, let me just clarify that YHA gave me a private room throughout my sponsored stay. Occasionally, I would share rooms with Lucy but she was my companion throughout the trip so I don’t think that counts. The real hostel experience (sharing rooms with a stranger and the like) happened when I extended my trip.

Now, shall we begin with the review? I promise it’ll be really informative!

Read more

The Walking Safety Guide

You’ve all seen how beautiful Lake District is, so it’s natural that one of the popular things to do there is walking. Now, we all know that walking isn’t an extreme sport but it can be a dangerous one. And the kind people over the Great Outdoors Superstore created a campaign to improve the awareness and knowledge of walkers and hikers around the world so that they are fully equipped for any emergency situation. 

I thought I should share them to you so you’ll be informed because you’ll never know when things like these happen. For more resources, visit Great Outdoors’ The Walking Safety Guide. :)