Dubai – the place with everything, but something missing

Dubai leaves an impression on almost everyone I meet who has been there. People talk of great skyscrapers, the World development, of wonderful shopping and 7 star hotels. Money, money, money (for a small part of the population at least) I have to admit it is not one of my favourite destinations. I enjoyed seeing […]

2 day hike for softies: West Island Way – Isle of Bute, Scotland

Not to be confused with the more illustrious West Highland Way on the mainland, the West Island Way winds around the Isle of Bute, just off the west coast of Scotland, and within fairly easy access of Glasgow. We walked this trail over a summer weekend, and at 30 miles can comfortably be completed in […]

Torres del Paine, Chile – land of icebergs, glaciers and wild mountains

We missed our connecting bus in Puerto Natales by an hour. Next bus – 23 hours. We then knew we were off-peak, and reaching Torres del Paine would not be easy. A dirt track of a road winds its way from the Argentine border into the national park, with little passing traffic. With a pre-paid […]

Safari – Canadian Style – Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba, Canada

Around 5 hours west of Winnipeg is a little-known part of Canada that’s well worth the effort of reaching. Riding Mountain National Park does attract its share of visitors. Sadly, most of these are there to shoot the wildlife, rather than admire it. We visited the park as an aside before our trip north to […]

Wuxi, China, 1995 – A snapshot in time

This picture, and the words accompanying it, might be of no use to the prospective visitor to China in 2009. After all, if you find this stretch of water in the city of Wuxi, you are unlikely to recognise it from the details here. Although the picture is only 14 years old, at the time […]

Want snow? Come to Mallorca, of course!

As I sit in my garden in sunny St Albans, with the temperature soaring past 30C, the thought of going to Mallorca is not particularly enticing. Although as I look for some shade and a place to cool off, maybe it does deserve a closer look. After all, the only time we have been there, […]

Under African Skies – Sabi Sands Reserve, South Africa

It’s hard to beat the multi-coloured beauty of an African sunset. The sky seems bigger, the hue of the reds and oranges more expressive, the clouds more dreamy. And the sounds of the plains around us while watching the sun dip below the horizon leave you in no doubt where you are. We stayed in […]

Routeburn Track, New Zealand – Tramping at its best (and a bit of Japanese)

I can’t remember if it took us three days or four (it was a while ago now). I do know that for each of the days, we were treated to views that took our breath away and more than compensated for the aching limbs we were accumulating along with our miles. Stretching across the Southern […]

The Perfect Storm – New York City

I am sitting at home in St Albans tonight watching the lightning and hearing the crashes of thunder that have been dominating the summer evening here for the last three hours. I love thunder and lightning, and am mesmerised by the sight of an electrical storm. My mind went back to the best storm we […]

Buenos Aires – dance the calories away

Walk down the main pedestrian streets in BA, and you won’t go far before you see a tango troupe. Usually a couple of guys and a girl, and they carry an old stereo. Without warning, the music starts, and a couple take to the floor. You will see countless such displays in downtown Buenos Aires, […]