Europe 2017: Jin & Portia’s Big Adventure

Hey there Posse, I have written this post in advance because Jin and I are tripping around the globe again. We’re calling this holiday Europe 2017 and are hoping to see some old friends, some new sites and cities, meet new friends and generally have a wonderful time.

Jin is the driver for Europe 2017, to be honest Jin is the driving force behind our holidays too. I sketch out a rough plan, usually with cities and friends I’d like to visit. He comes back to me over the course of a month with amazing plans and ideas. We haggle a little, it’s all part of his joy really, the cut and thrust of open debate. A little bit of compromise but not nearly as much as you’d imagine. Jin likes to try new things, like hotels. If I have found a hotel in a city that meets or exceeds all my criteria and I like it then that’s where I stay EVERY time. Not our Jin, he wants to stay somewhere new every time. So this is one of the very few times in our relationship that we ever have to give concessions.

europe_topography_map_en Europe 2017

Europe 2017: Jin & Portia’s Big Adventure

So, by the time you are reading this we have already been on Europe 2017 for 3 weeks. We’ve been to Slovakia to see Jin’s brother & family, Prague in Czech for a selfish rest, Berlin & Hanover in Germany catching up with a girlfriend or two, Rotterdam in Netherlands seeing another GF Sandra & her family then Luxembourg for another rest. We are now in Paris and tomorrow we leave for Milan to go to Esxence with Val the Cookie Queen & her BFF Judith, Megan in St Maxime and a slew of other bloggers and all the perfumers, perfume house owners and all the fanfare that comes with it.

Here are a few pics of what happened on Europe 2017 so far….

South Korea. Guerlain Eau de Cologne Travel Set!


Czech Republic




St Barbara’s cathedral at Kutna Hora

Prague March 11 2017 St Barbara's Jesuit art Gallery

I might have splurged. Rose Oud is a simple rose our combo. Imagine a sweet, high pitched, slightly poopy rose pot pouri and you will have a fair idea. It’s very wearable and Jin & I are both wearing it exclusively currently.

Yves rocher Rose oud

OK so in Berlin, Germany I bought a Nivea EdP too. It’s fricken great. Just like a sharp Nivea lotion that turns as sweet & creamy as you’d hope.

Berlin 15.3.17 Nivea

Berlin Wall.

Berlin 15.3.17 JP Berlin Wall

Met up with Anne, a regular reader here at Perfume Posse, we went to Parfumsalon Berlin.

Berlin to Hamburg 15.3.17 ParfumSalon Berlin Anna Mario Portia

YES! I shopped

Berlin to Hamburg 15.3.17 Tabac Tabou

Fell madly in love with the newest Profumi del Forte called Mythical Woods. Has a slightly popcorn smell over creamy woods. Freaking good.

Berlin to Hamburg 15.3.17 Parfumsalon Profumi del Forte

Hamburg’s major modern offering is the Opera House. It’s an architectural wankers delight. We were left open mouthed at some of the ridiculous choices but it IS fun.

Hamburg Opera House

In Rotterdam we caught up with bloggers Sandra and Esperanza. Had a great day discovering the delights of a new town for us all. Also the girls brought some new-to-me fragrances. I wish I’d taken a list because I fell for a couple of them but can’t remember what…..

18.3.17 Rotterdam Dinner Portia Jin Esperanza Sean Sandra

Brussels was so lovely, we ran around the plaza, pissing boy, chips and waffles in 2 hours then into the Mercedes and off to Luxembourg for dinner.

19.3.17 Brussels portia square

Luxembourg i9s fantastic, they are currently undergoing complete renovations on a heap of their famous sites, it was Monday so all the museums were closed but we still managed to overfill our days. There is a 14 euro 2pm walking tour that we found fascinating from the Place Guillaume Tourist Info Centre.

20.3.17 Luxembourg panorama

We went to the top rated Trip Advisor restaurant, Greek: named Athena. Ah May Zing. Go there. Portions are so big, order one meal and share. SERIOUSLY!

20.3.17 Luxembourg dinner

I might have done some shopping in Luxembourg for fragrance too…..

20.3.17 Luxembourg guerlain Mugler

By the time you read this we will be in Paris but that’s a whole ‘nother post.

Are you going anywhere this year for holidays or is it a StayCation year? Where would you go if money was no object?
Portia xx


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  • solanace says:

    Rome. Please life, take me to Rome. And please, life, The Force, since I’m asking, make Aleppo and Timbuktou safe again. People need to live their lives in peace, the world needs no more war and, on a bit of a selfish note, I want to go there, heck, to the place where the Marseille folk learned how to do soap and to the oldest university of the world, in Timbuktou, older than Paris, Oxford and Bollogna.

    Have a great trip, you two! Love the perfume choices, the Guerlain set of colognes is brilliant and that Kryptomint A Man looks like so much fun.

  • eldarwen22 says:

    I know I am late to the party but it looks like I will have two staycations and maybe a trip to Chicago for a weekend or maybe Virgina taking a look at the historic triangle there. It always boils down to money.

  • Lisa D says:

    Thank all the gods you are out there, Portia, having a blast – I am in the midst of work, work, work! So, your job is to provide joyful balance, and it seems like you’re doing great at it, naturally.

    I can’t complain too much, as I did have a lovely vacay in London and Seville over the winter break. If money were no object, I’d be back in Seville, lounging around a cafe table for hours on end, eating great food with friends and watching the people go by…..

    Interesting Yves Rocher selection – I used to love their Voile d’Ambre, and Rose Absolue; both very good and crazy cheap. Seems like the Rose Oud is part of the same Secrets d’Essences line – I might have to get me summa dat!

  • Kate E. says:

    Great pics! It looks like you are having so much fun, I can’t wait to see your next post!

  • Barbara B. says:

    So jealous! Staycation for me. St. Barbara is my patron saint . All those fragrances and the one that intrigues me most is the Nivea lol.

    • Portia says:

      Hi BarbaraB,
      Oh yeah, I had been panting for the Nivea too. It’s as good as you imagine.
      Are you fitting some special stuff into your StayCation?
      Portia xx

  • Doreen says:

    Oh – I love Czech Republic – did you connect with any perfumey things there? Loved this post even though I am just meeting you!

  • HeidiC says:

    Oh, wow! Love your photo essay! When you were in Kotnu Hora, did you go to the chapel completely decorated in human bones? Like, everything — the altar and altarpiece, chandeliers and sconces, everything — is built of bones. I’ve only seen pictures, and I wrote a poem about the 18th C chapel caretaker who decorated it. Also, when I was a girl, we lived in Antwerpen for a few years, and I loved Belgium and Luxembourg — did you get to climb around in the city’s casement walls?

    I was supposed to go to Iceland for a writing conference in June, but my parents needed help packing up and selling the house they’ve lived in since 1984, so I had to cancel. :/ Going to North Carolina to help them instead — I love going there, but it could have been freaking ICELAND. But my husband and I are going to Taos, New Mexico in May for our 10th anniversary, and that will be gorgeous.

    • Portia says:

      Hi there HeidiC,
      Yes, we did go to the Bone Church, how bloody creepy is it?
      Quite a bit of our Luxembourg stay was spent on those ramparts, they are a great way to see the river and old lower town. So easy to get to and around.
      OMG Iceland. That would have been something.
      Happy Anniversary for May.
      Portia xx

  • Rosemary says:

    Thanks for sharing your adventure, Portia, looks like a fantastic trip! I did a double take when I saw the Rose Oud, as I recognized the box and bottle design, and yep, it was Yves Rocher! I used to order skincare and fragrance from them all the time in the 2000s, there was one called Voile d’Ambre (I think) in same “line” as Rose Oud that I adored…and Yria, and I’m forgetting the names of the others, but they smelled lovely on me, may have to re-find them!

    We have booked a beach house on Dauphin Island (about 40 min. from my home in Mobile AL) for a week in upcoming July, looking forward to that! If money and time were no object, I’d be ready for a trip to Europe; never been there, and high on my list would be Italy (both my husband and I are of Italian descendants) and France (for the perfume!), but there are parts of EVERY European country I’d love to visit! Someday we’ll make it across “the pond” 🙂 And if I had my way, I’d go spend at least one week a year on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, been there 3 times and love snorkeling on the 2nd largest coral reef in the world, and exploring the Mayan ruins, and swimming in cenotes…

    Ummm, is it vacation time yet?!!

    • Portia says:

      Hey Rosemary,
      I love Voile d’Amber, it’s beautiful. I also have Vanille Noire from the set.
      A beach house? BLISS! We spent a few of our childhood holidays at various East and West Coast Australian beach towns. Sometimes extended family would hire houses nearby and we’d all spend summer running amok. Great memories. Have a ball.
      Portia xx

  • Tara says:

    Fabulous, Portia.

    Oh I would have grabbed that wonderful Guerlain Eau de Cologne set too!

  • LaDona says:

    Wonderful pictures! Thank you for sharing an amazing trip!