Apr 232017

I’ve spent some time this weekend working on photos from inside the Paradise Cave in Vietnam’s Phtong Nha national park. In doing so I’ve realized just how long it’s taking me to get through all my photos from Vietnam. I was there in 2014!

I like the stalagmite in the foreground, it looks like a melted candle.

paradise cave stalgamtites stalagtites and columns in phong nha vietnam

Apr 152017

I’ve mentioned before that when we visited Ha Long Bay we actually stayed on Cat Ba island and explored the surrounding area by kayak. There was all sorts of activity on the water from small fishing boats to floating villages.

I think I actually took this photo from the tour boat that transported us to the island, but I’m not sure.

cat ba island ha long bay fishing boat

Apr 012017

There’s a little cave off the main (only) road that runs through Vernazza. If you walk through it, you end up on this rugged little beach. After a bit of research, I discovered that this beach didn’t exist until 2011 when the landslides the devastated the region created it. This beach was the only sign I could see that the landslides had occurred at all.

vernazza beach caused by landslide colourful houses on top of cliff and ocean

Mar 242017

I made it to Meteora early last year, unfortunately I only got to spend one morning there. As you can see from this photo, there are far too many monasteries, clinging to these rocks, to visit in one morning!

monasteries of meteroa

Feb 282017

You can see a loaded ferry seemingly on a collision course with the rocks in this photo of Manarola’s harbor. What’s actually happening is people are boarding as the ferry is nosed up to the “ferry dock”. I put the ferry dock in quotes because it’s less a dock than a rocky coastline with a couple of cleats on it. The ferry noses up to it, and the crew roll out a gang plank for people to climb aboard as the boat pitches and rolls with the waves.

Manarola harbour with ferry at dock and village on hillside

Feb 262017

When I took this photo in Phong Na, Vietnam, I was precariously balanced on a rickety bamboo bridge. A little farther on we were stood on one, when it suddenly dropped about a half foot, nearly dumping us overboard.

river rushing aroud a large boulder in phong nha ke bang national park vietnam

Jan 182017

In my post about Delphi I mentioned that I had made a return to Greece last February to tick a couple spots off the list that I’d missed, while inter-railing across Europe, due to an extended stay in Thessaloniki. The other place that I’ve been wanting to get back to is Meteora, where monasteries perch atop rock pinnacles. They used to be cut off from civilization with no roads leading to them. The method used for entry by most was formerly a rope net basket that the monks would climb into, to be hoisted up by the monks above turning a wooden winch. Standing on the edge of these and looking down was pretty terrifying.

panorama meteora with monastaries

Jan 122017

The drive to this spot, just outside of Cassis, was pretty difficult. The roads were really tight and I was adjusting to driving a manual transmission again for the first time in a few years. At one point, I was driving up a steep hill and a car came round the corner causing me to stall the car. The problem was I also rolled back about 2 yards. I have no idea how I avoided hitting the car behind me.

This is a calanque. It is a narrow-steep walled inlet carved into the limestone rock. When we got there, I had no idea it was going to be full of sailboats like this!

calanque full of silaboats near to cassis provence france

Jan 022017

I mentioned yesterday that I finally made it to the Cinque Terre after three attempts. This photo is from another place I once planned to visit but failed. After I finished university, I did a six week European tour from Amsterdam to Athens. The plan was to stop at Delphi and Meteora towards the end of the trip as we made our way from Thessaloniki in Northern Greece to Athens in the South.

Our problem was, we had a really good night out in Thessaloniki and decided we wanted another one. As a result we cancelled our stop in Meteora to stay in Thessaloniki another night. That decision was complicated the next morning when we were summarily kicked out of our hotel, due to some boisterous behaviour, and were left to wander the city in search of accommodation.

We still planned on stopping in Delphi for a night, but following two consecutive big nights out in Thessaloniki we weren’t at our sharpest. As a result, we got off the train at the wrong stop and would have to wait hours for another one to take us back. Instead, we decided to get on the next train to Athens.

So, I failed to make it to both Delphi and Meteora on that trip and have wanted to go back. At the end of March 2016 I had an opportunity to go back to Greece but only had a few days. Still, I managed to visit both Delphi and Meteora in a whirlwind tour.

The following is a photo of the Athenian Treasury at Delphi, a monument I saw often in text books. I did my best to take a photo that’s a little more interesting than the standard straight on textbook shot.

athenian treasury at delphi greece interesting angle with wall on right