My Dream Destinations 2018

My Dream Destinations 2018

Hello and HAPPY NEW YEAR 2018! I can not believe how quickly 2017 flew, I feel like it was just yesterday that I started this page, but in fact I starting blogging in 2015. Last year I published a list of my Dream Destinations of 2017. They were Greece, Australia, Portugal, Scotland, Italy, Spain, Thailand and Oman. I was fortunate enough to do a lot of travelling in 2017. 2017 took me to Greece (Santorini), Italy (Milan, Venice, Florence and Bologna), Netherlands (Amsterdam), Malta, France (Paris) and to a few cities in England. Again this year, I am compiling a list of my dream destinations of 2018 and hope that I can travel to them all this year! Ethiopia I shouldn't really be allowed to add Ethiopia on this list as I recently visited in the summer of 2016. Never the less, Ethiopia has repeatedly topped bucket-list holiday guides and has been voted the go-to place for travel last year. I usually go...
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I Am In Harar, Ethiopia – Part Two

I Am In Harar, Ethiopia – Part Two

One would think that two weeks in Ethiopia would suffice, but when you have family members all over Harar, even a month seems too short. Be sure to read Part One to see the first part of my trip, and keep reading to hear about the rest! Harar has the greatest number of mosques per square meter. When I heard this fact, I thought nah, it can't be! But when you actually visit, and hear the call to prayer echoing from mosques on every street corner, it's easier to believe that this is true. Most streets within the old city of Harar have a mosque / place of prayer. The white and green mosque below is the first built mosque in Harar. It has recently been refurbished, but it is a very small mosque with a green interior. This narrow pathway is known as the 'street of reconciliation'. This pathway is so narrow that one one person is able to pass through at any...
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I Am In Harar, Ethiopia – Part One

I Am In Harar, Ethiopia – Part One

Harar, Ethiopia : the land where my parents were born and raised. It is a historic town in Ethiopia and considered the fourth holiest city in Islam, after Makkah, Medina and Jerusalem. The first time I visited Ethiopia I was 7 years old, and since then I've returned three times. Most of my uncles, aunties and cousins live in Harar including my maternal grandmother, and so visiting Ethiopia is always a fun-filled time with lots of love, culture and tradition. The last time I visited was 2012, and so I had been craving to return either this year or the next. It just so happened that my cousin announced her wedding date as planned for the end of July and I jumped to the opportunity to book a flight and find myself in the middle of a Harari wedding dance floor! Don't forget to check out my blog post detailing the ins and outs of a Harari Wedding (you'll be surprised...
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A Traditional Harari Wedding

A Traditional Harari Wedding

At the end of last month, I experienced my first ever Harari Wedding. Harar is a small walled city in Ethiopia. It is considered the fourth holiest city in Islam, after Mecca, Medina and Jerusalem. It is also a city protected by the UNESCO World Heritage due to its preserved historic culture, and deep Islamic roots. Just before I returned home, I sat down with my cousin and we went through all the cultural steps involved when two people wish to get married. Culture plays such a heavy role in every day life in Harar, especially when it comes to wedding proceedings. 1. Nikkah In Islam, marriage is a contract where the bride and groom consent to the marraige. This is done at any point before the wedding. Once the Nikkah is completed, the bride and groom and now Islamically married, and anything that follows from this point is cultural and NOT  of a religious nature. 2. Sirri The elder women of the community make a...
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