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WELCOME. I'm Annika and the Midnight Blue Elephant is my blog. I travel between adventure and luxury and some of my favorite things are finding Nemo, noodles & champagne! Keen to come looking with me?

Read more about me & the elephant here...

 

Too shy to take portraits when you are traveling? Me too! Until I went to Kerala and things turned around. Here my best tips for taking portraits.

I never considered myself a photographer. In fact, I still struggle with the fact to call myself a writer though I guess a printed book with many words is proof enough. But photographer? Nah.
My brother is an amazing photographer and while we work on very different subjects I always shied the comparison.
So for a long time in my travel blogging life pictures were not my focus. Until I realized that a blog needs pictures. People attention spans need pictures to break up a text. And I to my biggest surprise realized I like taking pictures.

For World Oceans Day I wrote a little love letter to my first love, the ocean and a reminder to why we need to preserve our oceans.

I met my first love in the Netherlands. I was so young I don’t even remember when or how or if it was love at first sight. But then again, none of this matters.
We spent sunny days, lazy afternoons and when the weather wasn’t our friend, it didn’t matter either.

I was in love on gray days and during stormy nights and my love seemed unconditional. I felt better as soon as I was close, a calming presence mixed with a tingle of excitement.

Today, so many years later I am glad that I got it right at least once with that thing called love.

A little recap of what is happening on Koh Tao right now, where to find the perfect romantic getaway close by and what divemaster training all entails.
 I used to write monthly recaps. And then I stopped. Maybe because I thought nobody was interested or maybe because life happened and sometimes not much to write home about at all happened. I don’t even know.
But I am craving a dear diary moment so with that I will start again. What time frame? Meh, I don’t know. Let’s try that monthly thing again, it seems fitting considering that a new one is starting today.

Are you into scuba diving? I am on my way to becoming a PADI divemaster & share some random facts why I love the underwater world and sharks.

I am doing a dive master.

Well, I was informed that technically this is a wrong way of putting it unless you are are in fact, sleeping with someone who is a dive master which I am not. Semantics aside though, I am doing the training to becoming a dive master. I am back in Thailand on Koh Tao, at New Heaven, where back in 2015 my love affair with scuba diving started in 2015 my love affair with scuba diving started.

Keen for a romantic mini getaway from Cape Town and all the wine? Head to picturesque Stellenbosch in the Winelands - tips on where to eat, sleep & drink.

I picked up the flyer while I was waiting at a counter. It said Keep calm and drink wine. Personally, I think the keep calm trend is overrated and outdated but I do like wine and after all, wine is what I came to Stellenbosch for.

Drinking wine or going to university is one of Stellenbosch’s main attraction. Mind you, I also have family there and just a deep appreciation for this little Winelands town. Stellenbosch has been overrun by tourists and chain restaurants in recent years but that doesn’t really diminish its charm. At least not by a lot. It does, however, mean that you have a lot fewer options on where to find a decent local meal to go with that wine.

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