Tag: outdoors

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On palm trees and perfect beaches: Sri Lanka, the final stop

The final stop of the two month extravaganza was Sri Lanka. We decided to go there to relax and get a week of sedentry beach holiday and Tom could get in a some diving, and I could do my PADI qualifying dives (doing it in Canary Wharf didn’t really appeal…). So those were the expectations I had set for the…

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On tea and trains in Darjeeling

We got to Darjeeling from Kathmandu by almost all modes of transport. We took a plane to Bhadrapur, then a taxi to the border town. After getting departure stamps from an immigration shack, we crossed the 1km international Nepal/India border bridge on foot (!) and hunted down another unremarkable immigration shack for international arrival stamps. We then took a shared…

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SPECIAL FEATURE // On Bhutan, land of the thunder dragon

I can say this with certainty: Bhutan is the most fascinating place I’ve ever encountered. I first heard about Bhutan in my Year 11 Economics class. It was mentioned fleetingly in documentary we were watching in class, but had always stuck in my mind. Bhutan is the world leader in measuring their economy’s success through Gross National Happiness. It makes…

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On Nepali misadventures: rain, rhinos and rowing // photo diary

Our time in Nepal was one of Plan Bs. Remember when I said that monsoon season that is ‘just a bit of water‘? Well I shot myself in the foot a little bit there. We were in Nepal for plus or minus 10 days. Five of those rained non-stop. I’m not exaggerating in the tiniest bit. Non-stop. And preceding our…

On Leh, the adventure capital of the Indian Himalayas

On Leh, the adventure capital of the Indian Himalayas

At a staggering 3,500m, the ‘Land of High Passes’ literally takes your breath away. After an unquestionably stunning flight from Delhi to Leh, located in India’s north west, nestled in Jammu & Kashmir, the first thing you’ll notice is how thin the air is. It certainly takes some acclimatisation. Its high season is July and August, as snow covers the…

On a spectacular flight into the Himalayas: photos

On a spectacular flight into the Himalayas: photos

I used every fibre of my being to get a window seat on the commercial flight from New Delhi to Leh, Ladakh, situated in the north west of India in the Himalayas. It was even better than I could’ve hoped for. The range first cropped up as snow covered peaks above the clouds, which cleared to give a breathtaking panroama…

On Dharamshala and learning yoga in the clouds

On Dharamshala and learning yoga in the clouds

What magic. As I said in my previous post on the Tibetan refuge in McLeod Ganj, when I refer to Dharamshala I really mean the the villages of Upper Dharamshala: McLeod (pronounced Mac-Lod) Ganj (could you tell the British used to occupy here?), Bhagsu, and Dharmkot where I made my home for a week. I had enlisted into a five…

On Cesky Krumlov & Bohemia // Central Europe photo series part 5 - Cesky Krumlov

On Český Krumlov & Bohemia // Central Europe photo series part 5

Český Krumlov is a small city in South Bohemia in the Czech Republic, and is a visual treasure trove. It reminded me a lot of my university town Durham actually. With winding, cobbled streets along the curving river, pastel buildings with terracotta roofs, hedge gardens, and an embellished castle with bears pottering around the moat, Český Krumlov is enchanted. The trip to Český…

On Zagreb & the Plitvice Lakes // Central Europe photo series part 2 - plants & churches

On Zagreb & the Plitvice Lakes // Central Europe photo series part 2

Croatia is mostly known for it’s craggy beaches and clear waters,  but I was inland. Cue: Zagreb. Filled with green squares, classic architecture, Dolac food market with ancient scales and fresh cherries, fresh flowers, and nattering nuns outside the Cathedral of Assumption on Kaptol. Due to my newfound love of turquoise lakes from Slovenia’s Lake Bled, I took a day trip…

On Lake Bled & Ljubljana // Central Europe photo series part 1 - Lake Bled rowers

On Lake Bled & Ljubljana // Central Europe photo series part 1

My Central Europe adventures began in Lake Bled. It has been on my bucket list for a long time. And why wouldn’t it be? The Lake is perfect. Other than turquoise, I haven’t seen anything more turquoise. The water was the most refreshing I’ve ever been in. It was a brilliant 33 degrees – perfect for reading, sunning, swimming, a boat, forest walking, gorge visiting, and an…