Tuesday, 10 June 2014

A Parsnip Abroad - Part Two

Back to the perfect beach that is Playa Dorada in Lanzarote! I was so hot when we got back from Fuerteventura that I almost ran to the beach and legged it into the cool sea! By Thursday it was getting really hot and the clouds and wind were less and less, so the more time spent in the water the better!
 Crystal waters.
 We got back to the beach at around 5pm and it was still amazingly sunny and beautiful!

 Swimsuit 22 - BHS
 I had many cocktails and a lot of sangria this holiday, it were lovely!
 I've been saving this dress for the holiday, now I finally get to show you guys! Isn't it lovely?! It's a topical print with pin-up girls all over it!
 I got this from my go-to shop for vintage repro clothing Queen of Holloway (via ebay) and I'm wearing the 4XL/UK24. There is a bit of stretch but not loads. If you want one get it here! I've just ordered another dress from QOH (I made myself wait until after pay day!) which I'll show you as soon as it arrives.
 Quite a view!

 Just working out by the beach, as you do!

Bit of a sing song with our dinner!
 Starting the day off with a swim was a fine way to wake ourselves up!
 Kaftan L - Primark
Swimming costume 22 - Bon Marche
Flippin' loverly!
 I am not much of a walker, or climber, or anything that feels like an outdoor activity. Thing is I really wanted to see Papagayo beaches. The pictures of the 6 little beaches were just so breath-taking that I was like 'how bad can it be?!'. Taxi's won't take you to the beaches because there aren't any proper roads. Probably should have given me a clue that it wasn't going to be the easiest place in the world to get to?!
 I wasn't really prepared for the steepness of all the rocky hills and freaked out a bit, but once I'd got myself together I went for it with my boyfriend keeping me calm (he loves this sort of thing and never gets to do it bless him - he was visibly having much more fun than me on the mountainous descent!)
 The first beach was obviously the busiest so we pushed on through to number 4 (we couldn't see a way down to the two smaller coves in the middle... not one I was prepared to attempt at any rate!) and as you can see it was pretty secluded.
 I wore my super comfy simple swimsuit from BHS as I knew we'd be trecking & wanted comfort. If you're thinking 'is that a butt-naked behind Cass then the answer is yes. There were quite a few naked old dudes on these little beaches, and a few ladies too.
 I got rolls and I ain't afraid to use 'em! Look at the beautiful rock formations! layers of amazing volcanic rock, just so beautiful!
 All the naked folk wandering round the rocks proved my boyfriends hypothesis that you could get from one beach to another via the rocks rather than clambering up the hills (I was sure that you couldn't as they looked quite dangerous to my scaredy-cat eyes!) so he went on a scouting mission.... he slipped over on the rocks apparently, possibly after a rather attractive naked lady bent over to look in the rock-pools and flashed her vagina at him (a bit unfair when all I got to see were tiny brown willys and long old man balls!) When he came back he confirmed that it was by far the easiest way to get from beach to beach. I wish someone on the internet had given this little secret away!
 We left beach number 4...
 ... and got to beach number 3, a tiny secluded cove ideal for couples!
 I wore my full-on Nike sandals that I got for the holiday (knew I'd have to walk over the rocks at some point!) and they were brilliant. I didn't fall or slip and they were comfy and excellent, and so wide that they were almost too wide for my square feet! They only have them in a 7.5 now (better for a size 8, my 6.5 pair are generous!), but if you're interested get them here!

 Isn't it beautiful?! Totally worth the trip!
 Cove number 2 was bigger, but still very secluded, hence more naked people. My boyfriend was too burnt to go naked so I didn't go the whole hog, just a bit of topless sunbathing!

 More spectacular rock action (that's the kind of thing that floats my boat!)

 Back to the first beach for another swim!
Again, beautiful water, but not as calm as Playa Dorada.
 Playing in the waves is fun!
 Quite a view!
 I really wasn't looking forward to the journey back, but we ended up following a group of students and thier teacher who led us round a path that was SO much easier than the one we had taken! There is such rubbish info about how to get to the Papagayo beaches on the net that I thought I'd just do a quick one here, in case any of you ever want to go there!

Tips for getting to Papagayo Beaches....
 Can you see how many paths have been worn in the hills? That's what makes it so bloody confusing! It would be much safer if they had signs or a clear maker for which path to take, but they don't so if you aren't lucky enough to have transportation that will take you to one of the car parks near the beaches then you're gonna have to walk!
  •  Wear sensible non-slip shoes that you can walk on rocks & seaweed in!
  • Take water with you as the beaches are secluded and don't have shops.
  • There isn't much in the way of shade so take loads of suncream and a beach umbrella if you can manage it, big hats and cover-ups in you can't! We saw lots of families with umbrella tents for their kids and they would be perfect to take to Papagayo (something like this!)
  • Get a cab (or walk if you're close by) to the Large hotel on the top of the hill nearby (sorry I can't remember the name or find it on the net, but the taxi driver dropped us off outside a big hotel where the path to the beaches began!).
  • Look for the pathway that has little rocks bordering it for a couple of meters and follow that one. It takes you further round and away from the shoreline but in the end it's quicker as you don't have to do much climbing up or shuffling down steep rocky inclines!
  • If you want to go to the smaller beaches rather than the first one just keep to the water front and then carefully walk over the rocky verges that separate the coves. It is by far the quickest and easiest way to get from one beach to another, just stay on the highest parts away from the water as the rocks are less slippery!
 As with everything in life it's easy when you know how, but as with most things in my life I do it the hardest way first before I learn the simple route... if you see a group being taken to the beaches, follow them, they probably know the easiest paths, and believe me it is so worth it!
Bye bye Papagayo!
 Lounging around in my plazzo pants before getting dressed up to go out!
 For our last night in Lanzarote I wore a dress that I've been saving for the hot weather. This is one of the Taking Shape dresses that I was given to review last year, and I still adore it!
 My Boyfriend got really good at taking my outfit pictures, so good in fact that I'd be tempted to ask him to do more now we are home if I didn't know how much he hates using a camera! I do tend to smile more when it's not shitty self-timer shots though, and as it turns out he prefers pictures of me smiling with my goofy teeth showing!
 Artistic! Can you see my tan?! I'm more tanned than I have ever been thanks to our trecking!
 Dress 22 - Taking Shape
Shoe / bag / sunnies - Primark
 T-shirt and shorts - Uniqlo
Flip flops / sunnies - Primark
 Tapas for the last night
 I was so embarrassed when this full sized burger turned up, I thought it would be a tiny tapas sized burger... because it was from the 'tapas' menu!
 We ended the night by having a cuddle on the bed by the pools in our hotel.
 Innit lovely?!
The view from our balcony as the sun set. I get so excited when I can see the stars!
 Last day and a thicker jumpsuit that could see me through until I got back to our flat in London (forever 21+)
 We had saved our visit to Marina Rubicon until our last day - we had a late flight so we had time for wandering about but not time for swimming at the beach (wah!). It was the hottest day so far at 28 degrees so there was lots of suntan lotion and hat wearing!
 The marina is just a short walk from Playa Dorada and is worth a visit.
 I love all the cactus plants everywhere!
 Watching the fishes!
 Marina Rubicon is very pretty, and there are lots of bars and restaurants.

 Another new discovery - my boyfriend loves rocky verges and the sound of waves, so we sat for a while in the rocky area between the marina and Playa Dorada!
 Then of course we had to go and say goodbye to our favourite beach!
Hot feet in cool water is the best feeling!
I never did find a strapless bra but fuck it, I don't really care! I got these ace painted wooden earrings from an artisan jewellery maker at a little market the night before and I love them!
And that was it! We had to come home (before we drained Lanzarote of beer and sangria!).
I wasn't looking forward to the flight back because I had been so uncomfortable on the way out, but joy of joy! We had one of the monarch planes with the new seating! More space for my massive bum, leg room for my boyfriend and a belt that not only fit round me but one that I had to tighten! Nice work monarch, those seats are extremely well designed! 

Just to finish up.... What I've learnt about beach holidays;
  1. It is cheaper to buy all your toiletries and beach towels etc when you're there than pay to take luggage with the cheap airlines. Next time I think I will pack light, using a cabin hand luggage sized case, buy what I need when I get there, use it then bin it before I fly back!
  2. Almost every hotel I've stayed in has a hair dryer, so I really don't need to take one!
  3. Deep conditioning of my hair after a day in the sun, in the sea or in the pool is very necessary.
  4. Chafing gel is a must for getting to and from the pool / sea!
  5. Never use regular suncream on a face with sensitive skin - I am currently treating alligator skin from a reaction to our suncreams and I couldn't wear any on the last day because it stang like hell! Coconut oil and blue nivea were the only things I could use on my face by the 4th day, even aloe vera stung!
  6. Take a good hat to protect your head and face from the sun (see above!) and always have somekind of cover up with you in case your skin starts to burn. My shoulders are very brown now, but I wore my little kimono jacket loads to stop them getting burnt (stretch marks on my shoulders burn really badly no matter how much suncream I slather on!)
  7. Nothing is better than lightweight bandeau jumpsuits for wearing over swimsuits. I took other clothes to wear during the day, but I didn't wear most of them because Jumpsuits are easy to get on and off, cover a swimsuit, stop my thighs chafing and (if they're jogger style like mine) can be worn like long shorts. They're also cool to wear if you get the non-stretch type!
  8. Cheap flip flops are a bad investment. Thick soles are best for walking around and on the beach! My crocs have seen me through many long trecks on holidays and I recommend them for hard wear and good support. Similar to mine here.
  9. You get a better tan when walking around out in the sun than by sunbathing. You just burn doing that!
  10. I feel like this is the most relevant point for this little blog of mine... It doesn't matter if you're fat. I only saw a couple of other fat women while I was in Lanzarote and I was aware that I was one of the biggest women around, but I was also aware that nobody gave a shit. Of course I got some lingering looks, but most of the time they were from scrawny leather-faced people who were tanned to the point of insanity, and their idea of what is beautiful is clearly the complete opposite of mine so it really doesn't matter! It amused me to think that they might find me repulsive while having no idea that I found them equally (if not more) repulsive. A speedo wearing, 50 year old saggy man with skin like a mahogany sideboard and Backtreet Boys highlights is never going to make me feel ugly, do you know what I'm saying?! So go about your business and don't be intimidated by thin people - they're the same as us, minus a few rolls of fat!
 That's it folks, we had a wonderful trip, and we seem to have bought the sunshine back with us - don't say I never do anything for you! 



  1. Have really loved reading about your holiday and am inspired by your clothes choices! The vivienne of Holloway dress is amazing as is the primark kaftan cover up! And I will definitely be investing in a jump suit now before my holiday!

  2. I have enjoyed reading about your holiday so much, thank you for sharing it. Sounds like you had an amazing time and it's lovely to see how happy you and your boyfriend are together :-)

  3. I'm glad to hear it! Jumpsuits for beach holidays make life so much easier (and more comfortable!) xx

  4. Thank you! It was such a nice break, we needed a bit of relaxation as we haven't had a holiday in a couple of years.... we are both happy bunnies at the moment! xx

  5. Leah (Just Me Leah)10 June 2014 at 15:16

    Ah Cass, I'm living vicariously through your pics and *almost* feel like I've been on holiday myself. Lovely!

  6. Excellent! I was so glad to get away, everyone I work with has been on numerous holidays this year and I was getting jealous to the point of bitterness! It was a much needed break from work and commuting for both of us! Xx

  7. Gorgeous venue photos! Now I'm itching for a trip to the beach! Last year we lived right on the coast, and now in Nashville we're completely landlocked. I suppose we could find a river or something...haha. I wanted to comment especially on that mint dress you're wearing from Taking Shape. I spotted that one online as well, and you look absolutely lovely in it. I love how you styled it with the black and white flats. Very chic and ladylike!

    <3 Liz

  8. I'm always longing to go to the beach, but I normally settle for our local Lido - Happily I've come back to London to sunny weather so I can still lounge about in the sun!

  9. Beautiful pics love! I am desperate for a holiday this is making me so jel lol! Totally agree with the bandeau jumpsuit tip, I live in mine on holiday! xx

  10. You look stunning in that Taking Shape dress. So jealous. Love your blog. Want to be on holiday now!

  11. Sali Hughes is a good source of advice regarding sunscreens for sensitive skin. I use the La Roche-Posay Lipikar hand cream, so I'm sure their sunscreen is excellent, if the hand cream is anything to go by!