Monday, December 29

Prague: 5 Things To Do.

 1. Old Town Square.

 2. Prague River Cruise: Enjoying the scenery without aching feet! 

 3. Charles Bridge: Prague's most beautiful bridge full of artists selling paintings.
 4. Petrin Tower: Experiencing Prague from Above. 

5.  Prague at Dusk: Prague lit in all its glory. Found a humble pizza joint in a hidden alley and had dinner there.
 5. U Felku: Visiting the City's Oldest Brewery.

Travel can be intimidating but is eased so much when you have good friends with you. Haren and I were in disbelief when we both initially received our timetable for the semester as we had Monday, Thursday and Friday off which meant that we were able to do short trips to neighbouring countries every alternate weekend. People often ask us how we were able to travel so much and the answer to that is: Scholarship Money! Most exchange students were granted an extremely generous amount from the German Government (which was enough to pay off weekly rent as well as our health insurance) with the remainder used for travel which was a bonus! 

I'd always been extremely fascinated with Prague as it seems like a story-book-kind-of-land and when we learnt that Croatia was only a couple of hundred miles south of the Czech Republic we were a little tempted to drive to Zagreb for a day or two but decided to sleep on that spontaneous idea as we were a bit short on time (4 days to see as much of Eastern Europe just isn't enough time!). Upon arriving we took to the streets of Prague for a quick stroll to get our bearings. If I were to sum up Prague in a few sentences, I would have to say that it has the largest concentration of beautiful buildings of any European city i've ever been to and if I had to choose I would go back to Prague over any other major city in Europe. Every building is so intricately detailed with statues and carvings and the Baroque architecture really resonates in this charming little city. Prague truly exceeded all my expectations with its brilliant architecture, rich history and small side streets which were just waiting to be discovered! Here's a little break down of how we did Prague in just under a day.

Transport: Drove from Stuttgart to Prague in a rented Skoda Superb which was great on fuel and comfort for a long road trip from Sixt Car rentals. We rented from them for every roadtrip we did in Europe as there were no hidden costs.

Lodging: Our hostel was located between the Charles bridge and Old Town Square which was perfect as it was a short walk to all of the sights of Prague as well as to the nightlife. We stayed at AHOY in Prague for 14 Euros a night. Loved the location of the accomodation but learnt that there was no elevator. - luckily we were all travelling relatively lightly so the two flights of stairs weren't a problem for us. Accomodation was also really clean which was a massive plus for the price we were paying. 

Sight Seeing: Old Town Square (lunch) / U Felku / Church of Saint Nicolas / Petrin Hill / River Cruise 

Photography: Haren Dias & Li-Chi Pan
Editing: Li-Chi Pan


Sunday, November 23

Casetify x Lichipan.

'Coffee in Amsterdam' by Mishmallow Illustrations

 'The Princess & the Pea' by Mishmallow Illustrations

People often ask me if i've ever met up with any of my 'Instagram pals' and the answer to that is actually yes. I was always slightly skeptical of meeting people from the internet / social media just because over the internet no one knows if you're a cat or a creep...However, after meeting Michelle (@mishmallow_) my perception of Instagram meet-ups has been altered quite drastically. 

Don't get me wrong - when Michelle agreed to partner up with Casetify & myself - I was over the moon but so nervous and slightly panic stricken at the same time to finally meet her. I'd always been a huge fan of her minimalist illustrations and after working with her before it was exciting to collaborate again but this time on a slightly larger scale project. Michelle & I were offered to do an 'artist collaboration' for Casetify which involved coming up with 5-6 designs for cellphone cases (check them out here: Before our initial meet-up I had these menacing thoughts as to whether or not there would be moments of awkward silences or forced conversation (the whole idea of meeting someone from a social media app felt like a blind date to be blatantly honest) but meeting Michelle in person was the best decision I made. Not only did conversation flow effortlessly but she was so likeable and funny.

We met over breakfast at Bread and Circus and discussed the collaboration with Casetify and then met again a few days later to have another relaxing breakfast (this time non work related) and caught up over laughs and relaxing conversation. She's turned out to be someone I really adore and i'm really thankful to have had the opportunity to have worked with such a creative individual. Instagram really has a knack of bringing people together!

Illustration of our breakfast at Bread & Circus by my lovely Michelle (otherwise known as Mishmallow on Instagram). The owner of the restaurant actually messaged her on Instagram to ask if he could purchase the print from London! Super exciting.

If you decide to purchase & support one of our designs tag us on Instagram at: #lichipanxmishmallow! 

Photography: Li-Chi Pan

Illustrations: Mishmallow Art / Michelle Bae


Monday, November 17

Grand Pacific Drive.

The last time Tanya and I saw each other was a year ago in Melbourne. Words can't describe how much I miss her and wish that she lived in Sydney - but I guess us flying up and down to see one another will have to suffice for now until one of us decides to move. Ha. Having discovered my favourite beach in Australia a few years ago I decided I needed to share this little jewel in order to convince the lil' lass to move to Sydney. The reason why I love driving down to Hyams Beach (in Jervis Bay) is because of it's secluded location, white sand and crystal clear waters. The beach lives up to all the hype.. and for a moment you sort of feel as if you were in the Maldives or Cancun (minus the tourists). Bucket list this place and GO! Details for accomodation + transport are listed below. 

Transport: The drive is supposed to take two and a half hours from NSW but be prepared to stop and take photos every 30 minutes or so. We ended up taking a grand seven hours (we literally pulled over non stop to take photographs...) But I suppose that's all part of the fun with a scenic road trip. We rented a car from Orana Car Rental for a week ($25 a day). I've been renting with Orana for just over two years now and they are SO much cheaper than Budget, Avis & Europcar. Additional driver is free of charge and international licenses are accepted!

Lodging: We stayed at the newly renovated Huskisson Holiday Cabins for one night ($120). Each cabin was equipped with a little kitchenette, private bathroom, balcony, queen bed and bunk bed all in great condition. WiFi was provided with a password but didn't seem to work (perhaps that was a good thing). The cabins in general had everything you needed and the location was an absolute winner! Would highly recommend staying here (perfect for 4 guests).

Sight Seeing: Stanwell Park provides the most picturesque views of the coast down South, Sea Cliff Bridge, Hyams Beach, Gerroa, Kiama (Blow Hole) and Huskisson for lunch.


Photography: Haren Dias & Sheng Lee
Editing: Li-Chi Pan