Category: World

The Magic of Machu Picchu

In my previous blog about the Salkantay Trek – the arduous but amazing walk to Machu Picchu – I said that Machu Picchu deserved a blog in its own right and it does… so here it is. Any photographic preconceptions of Machu Picchu don’t do justice to the sheer majesty of the ancient city, set high up in the cloud-covered peaks of Peru. Tumbling agricultural terraces are jewel-bright green, clinging to the edge of the mountain as lamas graze on them and Incan temples are a historian’s delight. The one hour guided tour at the beginning of our day...

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Exploring Paradise… Thailand’s Hong Island

The traditional Thai long tail boat moored up on the beach and the captain beckoned us to climb aboard.  Wading out through the warm sea, I did my best to hold my camera bag high above the water. We were embarking on an adventure to see the island jewel ‘Koh Hong’. And then we were off!  Heading out into the Andaman Sea we could see little island silhouettes on the horizon getting larger and larger.  Gradually they came into focus and we could see all their detail – the bushy green tree cover and steep, bright rock faces.  ...

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Newfoundland – East Coast Trail

I am very fortunate to live in Newfoundland. I’m surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean with miles and miles of wilderness to discover.  One of the trail systems I have been exploring is called The East Coast Trail (ECT). This past weekend, I spent an hour exploring the Half-Moon Brook area nestled between Flatrock and Pouch Cove. The blue skies were calling me out of my condo.  The clean, crisp air and constant sounds of waves crashing soon transported me to a place of tranquility and relaxation.  Heaven on Earth! The East Coast Trail Association is a member-based, volunteer-driven non-profit...

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Jamaica, the Enchantress

When my husband and I decided to take a belated honeymoon last December we wanted an easy-to-reach tropical destination. So we chose Montego Bay, Jamaica. I’ve found you can’t be on an island for long without taking on its unhurried rhythm. On an island, days seem to last forever—lazy mornings segue into rainy afternoons into dreamy twilight. Lush vegetation teems with the melodic chirping of tree frogs. Water and sky meet in an endless blue broken only by an occasional cloud. But most surprising—and spectacular—are the sunsets that hold you captive until the last flash of light slips into...

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Kirkenes and a Hike Toward the Russian Border

Whilst aboard the Hurtigruten, cruising around the magnificent coast of Arctic Circle Norway, you get to do some extremely interesting and refreshing excursions. I have so far mentioned the North Cape from my trip but further around the coast you reach Kirkenes, the point of return as far as the Northern Coast of Norway goes. Any further East is into Russia, was time to get the boots on for a walk in this truly winter filled area. The sun doesn’t rise here in mid winter but we had some light for a couple of hours after docking to take in...

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Reynolda Gardens, North Carolina: A Legacy Lives On

Here in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, I have discovered a “secret garden” in the heart a city once known for its thriving tobacco industry. Reynolda Gardens, a 129-acre Classical Revival garden, is quiet, serene, and beautiful. It also has a fascinating history. In the early 1900s, tobacco magnate Richard Joshua (R.J.) Reynolds and his wife Katherine Smith Reynolds created a grand 1607-acre estate, made up of farms, formal gardens, greenhouses, woodlands, a dairy operation, and a working village. Katherine built and oversaw one of the most innovative working farms of her time—a place where local farmers learned the latest agricultural advances. But...

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