A lot has happened since my first trip to Doha. Both personally and…Qatar-ily. In the three years that followed the country has pushed full steam ahead to build all things World Cup 2022, fallen into an unexpected diplomatic crisis (severing ties with the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain), and developed faster than any country I’ve visited in my lifetime.

The skyline is no longer a skyline. What was once a handful of aspirant skyscrapers has become a pop-up book of investment, expansion and pride.

One which now harbours much more than you’d expect from the eminent stopover destination…

(All outfit details at the end of the post!)
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I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about a weekend in so-called ‘Shoreditch by the Sea’ before visiting Margate. My research seemed promising (beach, food, amusements, et al) but I had yet to hear many people say much of anything about Kent’s north coast.

The trip was, affectionately, a gamble in a heat wave. One that offered just enough intel to help you do your own introductory trip in the best way.

What to do in Margate

The seafront
The primary draw of Margate is the ability to be on the beach within a single hour and a half train journey from London. And it doesn’t disappoint. Margate’s seaside has golden sand, warm water, and a refreshing lack of ‘sea and be seen’ behaviour you get outside of British beaches.

Compared to destinations like Brighton or northern Cornwall, there were also significantly fewer people than expected for genuinely hot weather meaning both the beach and its surrounding restaurants felt more relaxed and accessible.

Dreamland
Dreamland is a funfair on steroids. The amusement park has been on a rough ride of its own since launching over 100 years ago (administration, multiple closures, and more) but has since been re-imagined to perfection. With new owners and investment, Dreamland now hosts new rides, live music, street food, film clubs, a roller disco, and more.

You can even purchase ‘twilight tickets’ which give you access from 5 to 9pm Thursdays to Sundays which, with alcoholic slushies in hand, offers an unforgettable night out.

It is also undeniably Instagram-friendly with neon lights, giant rainbow racing slides, and delightfully colourfil landscapes.

Turner Contemporary
Though the contemporary art museum is less than ten years old, many people thank it for the resurgence of tourism and development across Margate at large. I didn’t have the time to make it inside but admission is free and it sits right on the edge of the seaside, making it an ideal pitstop for a day in Margate.

Where to eat in Margate

There are quite a few well-reviewed spots along the seafront, so we made sure to beeline for two of the best – Peter’s Fish Factory and Cinque Ports. The fish factory is exactly what you’d expect from a chippy with a line around the block; fresh produce, friendly service, and a wide variety of finely-fried fishies.

Cinque Ports offered something a little more refined, without being pretentious. Their focus is on elevated pub food, sourcing everything seasonally and locally. Though I initially sat down for a recovery plan of fried pickles and Bloody Marys, everything that came out to our table of six was phenomenal. Double corn fritter burgers to smashed avo on toast.

Where to shop in Margate

Though the small town hosts a handful of high street favourites, Margate’s real shopping destinations are its Shoreditch-synonymising vintage stores. Pink-walled Peony Vintage and its surrounding shops on King Street hold some of the most unique French vintage I’ve seen in years, but there seems to be a little vintage space worth exploring around most corners. Even RG Scott’s Furniture Mart offers an Aladdin’s Cave of restored and vintage finds.

Want to plan your own trip? Enjoy Margate has the goods!



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day break travel blog
Flight delays are one of life’s nasty little inevitabilities and if you’ve never experienced one before, they’re also pretty overwhelming to navigate. Luckily, I’ve had my unfair share of delays, cancellations, and unexpected overnight stays to give you the low-down on how to deal like a sky-flying pro.

Listen up

Keep your cool

You’re not the first and you’re certainly not the last, babe. Delayed and cancelled flights occur every day (knock on wood), so try to stay as calm and proactive as possible. Ask the airline staff about your options kindly and see what protocols they have in place to deal with things like connecting flights, refunds, etc after thinking through your options. Remember – no-one wants you to have a bad experience with their company and most people will do everything they can to help. Most airlines will offer food and drink vouchers or lounge passes if the delay is less than three hours. Take advantage of what you can get and channel all the chill you can.

If their response is not what you’re looking for, call your travel insurance company and see what they can do. Most delays over three hours will turn into compensation, miles, and more.

Do a day break!

My favourite thing to do during an especially long delay is leave the airport and go on a day break. Rather than mulling in chaos, I love to explore a new city a little longer than expected or get a ‘day break hotel’ to work, sleep, eat, and more. Services like DayBreakHotels can offer a day room for around 70% off the full night price and often throw in things like spa access, turning a bit of a nightmare into a dream!

Get your money back

According to European Regulation EC 261/04, a passenger is entitled to a reimbursement of up to 600 euros if a flight is delayed for over three hours. All compensation claims I’ve made have come back to me within a few weeks but there are also plenty of legal options you can pursue if you’re having trouble.

Legal bodies like Bott & Co Solicitors claim a 99% success rate in winning flight delay compensation claims (no win, no fee) and apps like AirHelp even offer options for overbooked flights.

Happy travelling (when you get ’round to it), gang!


I live to share the places I love with anyone who may feel the same.

But I suppose that’s pretty obvious from these travel blogs, eh?

Nonetheless, I have so many destinations on my hit list I very rarely allow myself to visit the same place twice. Weekends away are the one opportunity I am able to turn a manic work schedule in my favour.

With just a weekend to spare and my passport burning a hole in the pocket of my Winter coat, a trip to Jersey promised to be the perfect escape.

Short flights practically ascend to descend from London and – after falling in love with the Channel island during a Christmas getaway – I knew Jersey had an intimate, foodie-friendly offering that felt just right for my loved one’s introduction to Saint Helier and beyond.

A post shared by Lela London (@lelalondon) on


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crowne plaza leeds 4
This year, The Times voted Leeds the number one cultural place to live in Britain above London, Manchester, Brighton, et-personal-al.

Though I hadn’t been back for almost two years, the year I spent living in the city centre left a lasting impression on me. The food, drink, and people are – in my opinion – second to almost none.

When asked to return to the city for work, I couldn’t help but turn business into pleasure and book myself in for a little staycation.

The second I booked in at the Crowne Plaza Leeds, I felt I was home.

Though the 135-room hotel is far from small, the high (and noticeably Northern) level or service made the stay feel rather intimate.

Arriving before our room was ready, we were welcomed into their beautiful club lounge (part of their recent £4.5 million refurbishment and a special hideaway for those in executive suites) for refreshments before being taken to our insanely affordable little suite.

After a few hours in bed (the novelty will never wear off), we headed out to luxuriate in Leeds’ electric landscape. The hotel is within walking distance of the First Direct Leeds Arena, Headingley Cricket Ground, Kirkstall Abbey, and my forever-beloved street food kitchen at Trinity Leeds – to name but a few.

We were out too long to get acquainted with the hotel’s Spirit Health and Leisure Club but I have already earmarked a full morning to enjoy the large indoor heated swimming pool, gym, and spa during our inevitable follow-up visit.

From king-sized bed to rainfall shower, I developed a hell of an appetite for breakfast so booked it for the hotel’s Bar & Kitchen @ LS1 for a locally-sourced Full English.

Or, as the bridal party across from us kept cooing, a “bloody grand Full Yorkshire”.

Not an attribution too different from the Crowne Plaza itself.

crowne plaza leeds 3
crowne plaza leeds 9
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