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Hoi An Old Town

Hoi_An_vendor

The small city of Hoi An is located about half way along the coast of Vietnam. Formerly a major port, Hoi An is now attracting many tourists who go there to soak up the town’s wonderful vibes; indulge in some reasonably priced shopping; ; laze away on the nearby magnificent beaches and to savour the local delicacies at Hoi An’s many restaurants, cafes and street stalls. . . . → Read More: Hoi An Old Town

Thai Trooping of the Colour

Thai_trooping_of_colours

It was a hot and humid afternoon when I attended the Thai trooping of the colour. We had to arrive several hours early, well before the official guests were due to arrive, and we ushered onto a tiered stand that was covered by a large marquee. The lack of air under the marquee only made the heat and humidity worse, so it was a very uncomfortable wait. We were also expected to wear our finery, so suits, or uniforms, for the men, and elegant dress for the women was de rigeur. As we waited for the official ceremony to commence fleets of flagged limousines would roll up to disgorge the official dignitaries, and we did have some fun trying to work out which countries were represented by trying to distinguish their flags. . . . → Read More: Thai Trooping of the Colour

Baikonur Cosmodrome Kazakhstan

Baikonur

Most people would know that the Soviets once led the space race, sending the first satellite into space and, in 1961, sending the first human into space. Both of these historic flights were launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome which, since the Soviet Union broke up, is located in Kazakhstan. Whilst the Cosmodrome is named after the Kazakh town of Baikonur it is actually 400 kilometres southwest of that town, closer to Tyuratam which is a railhead. Now that the Soviet Union is no more, Baikonur is no longer the restricted area that it once was, and it is now possible to visit the Cosmodrome, with guided tours being relatively easy to arrange. Baikonur is both the worlds oldest and the largest space facility, although its history alone is well worth the effort of visiting the Cosmodrome. . . . → Read More: Baikonur Cosmodrome Kazakhstan

Introduction to Bali Indonesia

Bali is Indonesia’s most popular destination for tourists. It is blessed with some very fine beaches, a beautiful coastline, magnificent mountain scenery, but most of all it is the Balinese themselves that are so welcoming, and so generous in allowing visitors to absorb their culture. I have been visiting Bali regularly for almost 30 years and have watched the tourist strip transform from a much laid back series of small villages to a fairly sophisticated urban area that is crowded with hotels, shops, bars and restaurants. . . . → Read More: Introduction to Bali Indonesia

Cruising on the ship of the desert

camels

For many people camels are associated with the Sahara Desert, or they conjure up the image of Lawrence of Arabia being bounced over hot sands on his trusty beast. However, it’s a little known fact that Australia has the largest population of wild camels in the world. Although the camel is not native to Australia, camels were considered the best form of transport across the wide Australian deserts, so were imported in the 1800s to help develop the country. Beltana Station is run by Russell and Ros Osborne, both of whom have a fascination for camels. They have spent a number of years researching camels and studying their behavioural patterns, feeding habits, temperament and the best ways to handle them. . . . → Read More: Cruising on the ship of the desert

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