Tag Archives: must see

The Maasai Mara National Reserve. It gets scary; can you hold you nerve?!

The main course on our Kenyan safari was Maasai Mara, the country’s vast game reserve, which we caught at just the right time: during the wild animals’ mass migration. Huge herds of wildebeest, zebras and assorted other, smaller hooved beasts. But the main attraction is the wildebeest, and their particular migration is known as the great migration – up from Serengeti in neighboring Tanzania ->

A zillion zebras too:

Read on…

Atypical adventures – pt. 6: VIP volcanoes, cockpit cruising, and an airborne anomaly.

Sea-based, then (low-land) land-based extraordinary experiences – done.

Next up – time to go higher…

First – proviso: I’m no serious mountaineer into tricky climbs requiring special equipment and training. I take my mountains volcanoes seriously, of course, but I’m always one to take the paths up an incline (if there are any paths), preferring to take a meditative-contemplative approach to volcano climbing/trekking…

I’ve scaled some of the more famous volcanoes around the world, but most of them – like Kilimanjaro – have almost become mainstream these days. So let me tell you about some of the more exclusive/exotic ones I’ve either climbed – or just visited and beheld (entranced!)…

First up – Krenitsyn volcano on the Kuril island of Onekotan, which I mentioned in the first post in this series ->

Read on:…

Flickr photostream

  • RMS Queen Elizabeth 2
  • RMS Queen Elizabeth 2
  • RMS Queen Elizabeth 2
  • RMS Queen Elizabeth 2

Instagram photostream

Clear nights, but wind that bites – for the Northern Lights.

Finally, another dream of mine has come true. I got to see… THIS! ->

This That, of course, being Aurora Borealis, aka the Northern Lights. Actually, I shouldn’t have written “of course” just there, because photos like these could have been taken in the southern hemisphere. Indeed, there are auroras down there too, but they’re referred to as Aurora Australis; and as Michael Caine once famously uttered – “Not a lot of people know that”! Record duly set straight, onward with this post )…

Read on…

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Sweet Chile o’ Mine: Santiago and the Andes.

Hola folks!

Herewith, a continuation of my late-2022 international business trip series. You’ve had Egypt (+1); you’ve had Jordan (+1); you’ve had Brazil (+0); and now – Chile (+0)!…

You guessed it – we flew to Chile from Brazil, so of course the flight wasn’t long. That’s just as well, for I’d had my fill of extended long-hauls of late (one of which lasted 38 hours door to door!). Another bonus regarding this flight: the views out the plane’s window over the Andes – oh my good-gracious-me! ->

Mountains, cliffs, valleys, glaciers – in places fading from browny-gray to bright yellow and orange (no Photoshop) ->

Read on: Sweet Chile o’ Mine: Santiago and the Andes.

The underground labyrinth of tunnels and tombs of the Valley of the Kings.

I remember how, a few years ago, strolling around the rocky landscapes not far from the Namibian town of Lüderitz (which is the place where what is now South America broke away from Africa, and why the rock formations there are so unique), I was so amazed by the unusual rocks there that I uttered the words, “Mom, I want to be a geologist!” Just the other week, I uttered something similar. I was in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor, Egypt. And this time my refrain went: “Mom, I want to be an Egyptologist!”

Such a rich (ancient) history presented in a language unknown to me – it was something I wasn’t expecting somehow. The experience turned out to be just marvelous…

Read on…

Monumental, brutal; in places – simply splendid. That’s Putorana folks!…

Norilsk business and places of interest: done. But up here in the Far North, there’s actually another place of interest to the adventurous (and well-heeled) tourist, albeit 300 kilometers to the east, and only accessible by helicopter (told you!), and that is the Putorana Plateau.

Briefly, the Putorana Plateau is simply… a magnificently marvelous mountainous area! It’s not quite Kamchatka, of course, but it still gets a full five Ks as per my (KKKKKaspersky Tourism Awesomeness Categorization System) classification. Oh yes: top marks (there is no KKKKKK). Just to remind: 5K = unique, monumental and complex. Not bad for a region you might think is only good for extreme cold and nickel and copper extraction )…

5K it is, but that doesn’t immunize it from downsides…

Downside one: the weather. It’s practically never good around here. Very much reminiscent of Kamchatka or the Kurils.

Read on…

Madagascan karma chameleons, geckos, tomato frogs, and more…

NB: with this post about the place I visited before the lockdown I want to bring you some positivism, beauty and the reassurance that we will all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Woah my gosh! Finally – our January 2020 African holiday-expedition (Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Madagascar) was coming to and end. Boo!

Our final African port of call – central Madagascar. Hurray! For they say it’s full of lemurs, chameleons, geckos, frogs (and also mosquitoes)…

I’ll start with the lemurs. Delightful little animals. Rather daft too! They react positively to… bananas. And negatively to… their tails being pulled (not that we put this to the test!). They seem totally uninterested in humans – unless they have bananas!

Next – chameleons…

A marvelous Madagascan thingy called tsingy.

NB: with this post about the place I visited before the lockdown I want to bring you some positivism, beauty and the reassurance that we will all get a chance to see great different places again. Meanwhile I encourage you not to violate the stay-at-home regime. Instead I hope you’re using this time for catching up on what you never seemed to find the time to do… ‘before’ :).

Next Madagascan theme – a rocky one. Particularly – a tsingy one!…

Madagascan tsingy refers to the country’s rather unique rock formations that cover some 1500 square kilometers. And they look like this:

Quite how these unusual forms came about the internet gives various versions of, including one that claims they’re from acid rain caused by a volcanic eruption.

Read on…