3 days in Northumberland based in Berwick upon Tweed. Explore Gossick, Lindisfarne, North Berwick, Seacliff Beach, Eyemouth, Cocklawburn, Embleton.
Browse for “Foodie Firsts” to discover new foodie experiences on your travels. From local delicacies to tasting menus – Treat your tastebuds!
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.
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.
Leaving Nayara Springs for Bajos del Toro It was tough to leave Nayara Springs. Some of the best wildlife we saw was right in the hotel grounds and the hotel…
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.
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.
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!
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.
Arrival in Costa Rica - The start of a three week trip. An infinite paradise of possibilities beckons, starting with San Jose, Alajuela and a welcome drink of Pipa Fria.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Breakfast at the Three Anchors Middleton Beach was generous and set us up well for a day's hiking, although the day started cool and damp, which took a while to clear. A short distance out of Albany brought us to the Gap and the Natural Bridge in Torndirru
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.
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.
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.
Cape Lodge, Margaret River is a very well appointed hotel with lovely gardens big enough to take a nice stroll around. Spacious, light and airy rooms have lake or garden views and spa baths big enough for two.
Today, we had pre-booked a tour of the Voyager Estate . The tour included the Voyager Estate Tasting Menu - a 7 course degustation gourmet lunch.
Amsterdam Day 3 - Museum Het Grachtenhuis, Albert Cuypmarkt Stroopwafels and a Canal Cruise with Those Dam Boat Guys.
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?
The Spring flower season in the Picos de Europa is short but spectacular. There are around three weeks between 20th May and 7th June when the mountains burst into life with a wide array of colourful alpine plants.
Nashville Day 2 - the city changed its name to Draftsville as the NFL draft got into full swing. Broadway was completely packed out with music ringing from every bar and stage as the crowd worked themselves into a frenzy yelling "The Pick is In".
It took us most of the day to drive from Memphis to Nashville. We arrived to discover that the NFL professional draft had just started - Nashville is the base this year. Nashville has a very upmarket feel to it. It is a booming city with a rising population that is growing fast.
Crawfish sauce was the nearest I got to crawfish pie - but I did sample the local catfish at Walnut Hills - 1214 Adams St. and it was delicious. This restaurant is full of old world charm at its best and serves good Southern Plantation cuisine.
White City to Natchez via the Louisiana State Penitentiary The great joy of travelling is that you never quite know what the day has in store for you. The Louisiana…
Laissez les bons temps roulez - let the good times continue to roll though... We moved on today to White Castle, driving the river road up the great Mississippi River to White Castle. This is sugar plantation country. It was fun to pass road signs to all the places you hear about in the songs you love
The New Orleans School of Cooking was a great place to spend a morning here. The cooking in the Deep South is way different from the rest of the USA. It is Creole - a veritable melting pot of all the nationalities that coalesced in this part of the world (Portugeuse, Spanish, French, Italian) and made it what it is today. Nothing goes to waste - it is "rooter to tooter" as the expression goes - i.e. - everything on the hog is used except it's squeak.