The Perils of Paradise – Koh Rong

The Perils of Paradise – Koh Rong

What makes a "paradise island"? A beautiful, white sandy beach? Warm, perfectly clear sea, complete with shoals of playful tropical fish? Wooden bungalows that look out over long stretches of unspoilt and virtually uninhabited coastline? A bit of jungle in ...

Luang Prabang

Luang Prabang

It's still the mid-nineteenth century in the Old Town in Luang Prabang. At least that's what they like you to think. One of the more upmarket bars even advertises itself as taking you "back to the elegant good old days, ...

Gliding Through Jewels and Jade – Halong Bay

Gliding Through Jewels and Jade – Halong Bay

We'd been warned, but the weather was a bit of a suprise, to be honest. From the warm stickiness of Saigon and the Mekong Delta, arriving in Hanoi in Northern Vietnam was a little like arriving to a late Autumn ...

Faces of Tet – A Vietnamese Lunar New Year

Faces of Tet – A Vietnamese Lunar New Year

For the last week, Saigon has been filling with flowers. As the numbers of Westerners diminish and the hotels and restaurants become crowded with revisiting expat Vietnamese and those taking an early holiday, the signs have been abound that the ...

New Friends – Allambie

New Friends – Allambie

Never ones to over sell things, 'amazing' is a word we try not to use too casually. However, our time in Saigon has truly been 'amazing', thanks to our new friends from Allambie Orphanage [caption id="attachment_1001" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Clockwise ...

Satays-faction – Bali Asli Cookery School

Satays-faction – Bali Asli Cookery School

Since we were joined for New Year in Bali by some of our family and friends, we've been eating, drinking and generally making merry in the Seminak area. Our retreat, which was refreshing in so many ways, is over and ...

Rain and Rest With Friends – Melbourne

Rain and Rest With Friends – Melbourne

One aspect of long-term travelling that we perhaps hadn't anticipated, but which makes total sense when you consider it, is the fact that when you get to a place of comfort, you feel a magnetic pull just to stay there ...

Whales And Wales – Puerto Madryn

Whales And Wales – Puerto Madryn

For a nineteenth century Welsh immigrant arriving in Puerto Madryn after two months on a boat, the landscape of their new Patagonian home must have been quite a disappointment. The miles and miles of flat and featureless shrubland would surely ...

Perito Moreno Glacier – It´s Cracking!

Perito Moreno Glacier – It´s Cracking!

Perito Moreno Glacier in Southern Argentina is like nothing I´ve ever seen. Nestled in the snow-capped mountains of Patagonia, near the town of El Calafate, it´s one of only a few glaciers that are actually growing. This means the sounds ...

Portraits of Uruguay

Portraits of Uruguay

Montevideo, Uruguay... Colonia, Uruguay... Oh, and we went to the Museo del Fútbol at the Estadio Centenario in Montevideo - the home of the very first world cup...

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A little over a week ago we arrived in Kuala Lumpur with just under a month to kill before some of our family and friends arrive for New Year in Bali. We’d reached the Malaysian capital on yet another bus, sweeping up the motorway from Melaka and, having no reservation for somewhere to stay, spent a hot hour trudging around […]

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In the warm evening air the audience remained reserved. Even when the ‘father of Malaysian bodybuilding’ appeared on stage to present the weighty prizes, the clapping was muted. Nonetheless, despite the limited adulation and the threat of a thunderstorm flashing through the distant night sky, the crowd remained. It’s important to take Melaka’s regular Sunday night pensioners’ karaoke competition seriously. […]

Nighttime Skyscrapers

The smells are exotic and pungent, the names are unpronounceable and often barely hint at the ingredients, the excitement is tingling and the relief is genuine. Our taste buds have arrived in South East Asia and immediately we find ourselves hunting down and partaking in one of Singapore’s favourite habits – eating from cheap hawker stall food courts. With the […]

Central Melbourne from the Botanical Gardens

One aspect of long-term travelling that we perhaps hadn’t anticipated, but which makes total sense when you consider it, is the fact that when you get to a place of comfort, you feel a magnetic pull just to stay there and nest up, and moving on becomes an even bigger chore than usual. Add to this the feeling that over […]

Australia Rock

Australians get annoyed when us wimpy Northern Hemisphere types obsess about their dangerous wildlife. Yes, there are killer spiders, crocs and sharks, but Aussies like to play down the danger of their great outdoors and find the idea of a kangaroo sighting being a novelty wryly amusing. For us however, whilst we were happy to avoid an encounter with a […]

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So it’s time to hit the road. Our van is green, our loins are girded and we’re off in a four day roadtrip to Melbourne in a green Jucy Vans campa. If only we knew where to stay for the first night…

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We’ve had plenty of fun with modes of transport recently. In Buenos Aires on Wednesday for example, our last South American taxi ride was characteristically terrifying, including as it did an 80mph race down the hard shoulder to avoid a jam, ridiculous overtaking in the airport car park and a moment where we casually ran over someone’s foot. Next, out […]

Steak in BA: AMAZING!

Our Patagonian adventures and all those mammoth bus rides took their toll on us on our return to Buenos Aires. In a city that seems literally never to sleep, being tired can be a problem. Thus, when we turned up at our booked hostel, which smelled markedly of feet, armpits and sleep, it was with a great deal of effort […]

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Buenos Aires is undoubtedly a fantastic city, and Argentina has certainly had a great deal to offer, but for those of us only here short term (less than seven days,) the city in particular offers some confusing and tricky social and dietary arrangements. Timekeeping and a daily schedule is perhaps the most flummoxing for the short-stayers. Residents of Argentina (and […]

Whale tail

For a nineteenth century Welsh immigrant arriving in Puerto Madryn after two months on a boat, the landscape of their new Patagonian home must have been quite a disappointment. The miles and miles of flat and featureless shrubland would surely not have been a patch on the Welsh valleys they left. Nevertheless, a small group did arrive in 1865 and […]

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Two things are immediately striking about Patagonia: they have some of the slowest, most careful drivers in South America and the sky seems unusually big. The long and straight bus from El Calafate to the small hiking resort town of El Chalten allowed us to appreciate both as the sun went down. There are numerous trails to try from El […]

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Perito Moreno Glacier in Southern Argentina is like nothing I´ve ever seen. Nestled in the snow-capped mountains of Patagonia, near the town of El Calafate, it´s one of only a few glaciers that are actually growing. This means the sounds are almost as impressive as the sights – groaning, creaking, cracking and sometimes sounding as though canons are firing in the […]

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Buenos Aires looked spectacular from the moment we stepped out on the deck of the ferry and saw the skyline across the darkness of the River Plate. It didn’t fail to live up to expectations. European in style and architecture, but built on a typically American grid, Buenos Aires was formally introduced to us through a bicycle tour on our […]

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For a very laid back and friendly nation, Uruguayans have quite a few obsessions. Like the other areas of South America with a strong connection to the gaucho culture, (most notably Argentina and Paraguay) agriculture, and in particular the production and consumption of meat, is both economically and culturally fundamental in Uruguay. In Montevideo, and we expect more of the […]

Man, boat, lamp post, Colonia

Montevideo, Uruguay… Colonia, Uruguay… Oh, and we went to the Museo del Fútbol at the Estadio Centenario in Montevideo – the home of the very first world cup…

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It can be tricky to write about our travels without making it seen like are gushing, moaning, worrying or gluttonous. The very nature of the tour we´re on calls for at least one, if not all of these characteristics almost every day. “Oh no, another 20 hour bus journey! Oh, but the sights are just spectacularly wonderful! Oh, but what […]

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Brazil loves its buses. Not in the same way that Peru loves buses, with their cracked windscreens, dodgy sandwiches and terrifying overtaking. Not in the same way that Bolivia loves buses, with their cliff-hugging ruggedness, wild temperature swings and unfathomable toilet stops. Not even in the same way that Argentina loves buses, with (as yet unconfirmed) reports of their wine […]

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We spent a while trying to work out how to write this post without making everyone jealous. We realised we couldn’t. You have been warned! We’re currently staying on Ilha de Santa Caterina, an island off the coast of Brazil and are very grateful to our friend, John Murray, who’s putting us up in some style near the fishing village […]

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When you arrive at your destination for a tour and get out of a van-bus to see a bare-chested guy pointing a submachine-gun at passers by, you know you’re in an interesting place. Whilst this was the case as we arrived in Rochina, Rios biggest favela by population with around 250,000 residents, we were pretty sure we would be safe. […]

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Everything they say about Rio seems to be true. Ipanema beach is beautiful, the climate is fantastic, the music is great and (some of) the people look amazing in swimwear. As we got over the long bus journey (26 and a half hours…) we explored only a small section of the city, from Ipanema to Leblon. We saw all the […]

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