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Read more about the article The Oxcart Path to Sarchi
Sarchi Oxcart

The Oxcart Path to Sarchi

It's not many trips that offer you a bare knuckle ride two days in a row.  Yesterday, we were expecting adventure.  Today, we were expecting a quiet drive to the colourful little town of Sarchi about an hour or so from El Silencio.

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Read more about the article “High Five – Pura Vida” – Sarapiqui River White Water Rafting
Sarapiqui River Rafting

“High Five – Pura Vida” – Sarapiqui River White Water Rafting

The next day took us an hour back down the windy mountain road to the Sarapiqui River and a knuckle clenching raft ride on the white water rapids with Pozo Azul Adventures..  These are Class II/II rapids and rough enough to be quite a thrilling ride.  You don't just get a bit wet on this ride, you get completely soaked.

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Read more about the article Hola Arenal – Mucho Gusto Amigos!
White Capuchin Faced Monkey

Hola Arenal – Mucho Gusto Amigos!

A warm welcome at Nayara Springs and the return of the sun enticed us into sampling a Caribbean fashion cocktail (7 year old Centenario rum, coconut water infused with rice, cinnamon and orang peel, orange syrup and angostura bitters) and spending the rest of the day doing little more than exploring everything this very beautiful resort has to offer - see the accommodation review for all the details.

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Read more about the article Tortuguero to Volcan Tenorio National Park
Cortez Amarillo Tree

Tortuguero to Volcan Tenorio National Park

Guess what - it rains in a rainforest!   Last night, it rained pretty well all night.  It hammered on the tin roof of the lodge for all it was worth, building up to a crescendo drum beat for a few deafening minutes before petering out to a bit of a tap dance and a finale of sprinkles and tinkles in the gutters.  Then silence, filled only by the constant hum of the air con which intermittently halted as the electricity cut out.

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Read more about the article Salut Manatus!
Three toed sloth (and baby!)

Salut Manatus!

Our base in the Tortugero National Park is the Manatus Lodge.  Access is via boat transfer only - and let's hope they keep it that way!  

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Read more about the article Alajuela to Tortuguero
Local girl on a swing Tortugeuro National Park Costa Rica

Alajuela to Tortuguero

The transfer from Alajuela to Tortugero took all morning - but what a lovely way to spend it.  We drove past banana plantations, fields of papaya, coconuts and plantains learning a little about the beautiful country that is Costa Rica (Rich Coast) as we travelled.

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Read more about the article Return to Perth – Fremantle and Dining on top of the World
Perth - view from the Captain Cook Cruise

Return to Perth – Fremantle and Dining on top of the World

A great way of spending our last day here was to drop off the hire car and buy a combo cruise/tram (commentated)/prison (tour) ticket for Fremantle (or Freo as they call it here).  IT is lively authentic port with plenty of shops and rstaurants to explore and some interesting history to boot.

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Read more about the article Mount Lesueur National Park – Boh Djinoong Quabba
Mount Lesueur National Park WA

Mount Lesueur National Park – Boh Djinoong Quabba

Mount Lesueur National Park is one of the world bio diversity hotspots as a result of of its severely impoverished soil and the unforgivingly low rates of phosphorous.  900 flora species grow here - 10% of WA's flora. These are the species that are known too - it is highly likely that others exist in the dense bush that no-one has yet found.  It has seven species of Declared Rare Flora.  In late Winter to Spring, it erupts into a rainbow of colour and you can see rare orchids and several varieties of kangaroo paw as well as many other beautiful plants.

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Read more about the article Geraldton to Monkey Mia – RUOK?
Wild Yak Beer - Shell Beach WA

Geraldton to Monkey Mia – RUOK?

The road from Geraldton to Monkey Mia (pronounced Mya) is a long 443 kms - 4 hours 40 minutes if driven straight.  We took a brief 44kms (return) detour at Northampton to visit Horrocks Beach because it was billed as a world class beach and won the best mainland beach in Australia award in 2018.   The route from Geraldton to Monkey Mia also allows you to visit two more National Parks:  The Stromalites at Hamelin Pool and Shell Beach.

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Read more about the article Polished Perth
Perth - a blend of old and new but young at heart

Polished Perth

Polished Perth - capital of a state ten time the size of Great Britain - is as close to the nearest big city (Adelaide) as London is to Leningrad.  Perth is a large, clean, modern city much like many others, but its balmy climate, position by the wide, blue Swan River and radiant sunlight bouncing off the skyscrapers gives it a unique charm all of its own.  It is, in every sense, very polished with a smart, high-sheen finish.

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Read more about the article The Great Ocean Drive WA – “Beware the Big Bitey!”
Great Ocean Drive WA

The Great Ocean Drive WA – “Beware the Big Bitey!”

We spent the whole of today driving the 40kms scenic loop that is the Great Ocean Drive, stopping all the way along the route for long walks and lookouts.  We have driven along beautiful stretches of coast before in South Africa (The Garden Route) and California (Big Sur Drive), but this was way better than either of those.  Maybe because of the intensity of the light here - the sun made the deep blue water sparkle all the way along and the wind gave us really BIG waves - awesome.

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Read more about the article Albany to Bremer Bay – “No Worries Mate!”
Kangaroos - Quaalup Homestead Fitzgerald River NP WA

Albany to Bremer Bay – “No Worries Mate!”

We woke early on the morning of our drive from Albany to Bremer Bay and enjoyed a hearty breaky (pronounced brekkie) at the Three Anchors in Alby. (Hey - this learning the lingo is a real breeze!).  A group of other early risers were lifting weights with big grins on their faces outside the cafe.  Middleton Beach has a net line set up for swimmers (large marine animals can’t pass through it, but small fish can) and there were half a dozen of them braving the cool morning to have a dip in the ocean.

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Read more about the article Pemberton to Albany – It’s Time to Feel the Tingle and Walk the Valley of the Giants Treetop Walk …
The Giant Tingle Tree

Pemberton to Albany – It’s Time to Feel the Tingle and Walk the Valley of the Giants Treetop Walk …

It takes about 3 hours to drive straight from Pemberton to Albany, but we chose to break the journey at Walpole and visit the Valley of the Giants Treetop Walk.  Walpole Visitor Centre gave us a very helpful map which helped us navigate our way there via the scenic route which gave good views of Walpole and the coast.

Continue ReadingPemberton to Albany – It’s Time to Feel the Tingle and Walk the Valley of the Giants Treetop Walk …
Read more about the article d’Entrecasteaux National Park – Even Giants Grow Old
Salmon Bay Entrecasteaux National Park WA

d’Entrecasteaux National Park – Even Giants Grow Old

A short(ish) drive to the coast brought us to ​Salmon Bay in the d’Enrecasteaux National Park.  The view from the lookout is truly stunning.  From the headland, crystal clear deep blue water, rolling surf and miles of deserted, golden sand stretches out before your eyes, beckoning you to discover it at close hand. 

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Margaret River to Pemberton – Another Great Day in WA

Time for another great day in WA!  Today, we travelled from Margaret River to Pemberton taking a short detour to the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse en route.  This is where the Indian and Southern Oceans meet (although they didn’t make much of a splash in the process today).  It is the most southerly point in Australia - it is 5435 kms to the South Pole from here.

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3 Days in Amsterdam Day 1

I am travelling with my daughter on this trip and we have three days to get to know Amsterdam and appreciate the best it has to offer.  I am looking forward to sharing the journey with her and seeing a new city through her eyes as much as my own.  We have based ourselves at the Pulitzer Hotel right in the centre of Amsterdam so we don't waste too much time getting from A to B (see accommodation review for more detail).  We have 3 days in Amsterdam - how best to fit everything in?

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