RTW Zhangjiajie national forest park

I had come to Zhangjiajie mainly to visit the eponymous forest national park. You know, Avatar mountains. The film wasn’t actually filmed there, but the Hallelujah mountains were inspired by the rock pillars in Zhangjiajie, as well as by the karst formations in Guilin. As the national area is large I opted to hire a…

RTW Angkor day 2

Sunrise at Angkor Wat, what an amazing experience! Not exactly a unique one, though, as there must have been about a thousand people there, all poised ready with their cameras and smart phones (see below, after sunrise when some had already left). Part of the reason for the great number of people could have been the…

RTW Angkor day 1

Everyone’s heard of Angkor Wat, right? But it may surprise you that there are more ruins of temples and cities in the Angkor Archaeological Park than just Angkor Wat. The park is around 400 square km in size, and includes the remains of several capitals of the Khmer Empire. Most of the best known ones are…

RTW mountain tops in Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai is a wonderful destination, even if you only want to chill, eat great food and visit more temples than you have ever seen in such a small area. But if you want to do more, there are several options out of town. To get out of the town and see the countryside a…

RTW Uluru and the outback tour – day 3

  The morning came around 5 am next day, with a wash, a breakfast, and some achy heads and tender tummies of those who stayed up drinking until midnight. You know who you are! I was very glad of my choice of an early night, when we heard that our Rim Walk at the King’s…

RTW Uluru and the outback tour – day 2

  We were hoping to catch a sunrise at Uluru, so the official wake up was at 5 am, with departure from camp promptly at 5:30 am. I surprised myself by waking up when my tent mate did, and having a shower and washing my hair that morning, despite the chilling temperatures. After a quick…

RTW Uluru and the outback tour – day 1

It may come as a surprise to many, but Uluru, or Ayers Rock, is actually 463 km from Alice Springs, the closest base to exploring the region. There are one day excursions available there, but from descriptions it sounds like it is mostly driving there, having a few photo ops, then driving back. Not for me. I…

RTW review – month 3

This is the another blog post in a series of reviews of each month on my Grand Adventure, the good and the bad. You find month 1 review here, and month 2 here. The best of the best This month has been a highlight of my travels so far, as amazing as everything has been until now. I…

RTW Alcatraz

When you think about Alcatraz island, I bet snowy egret chicks and thousands of flowers don’t come to mind. Yet, that is what I found there, to my pleasure and surprise. I also hadn’t realized that Alcatraz is a national park, or more precisely, it is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, as…

RTW up and down in San Francisco

  It comes as no surprise to anyone who has watched movies set in San Francisco that the city is crazy hilly. Seriously. Streets that stretch skyward and seem to end there, long streets that go up and down like a drunken seesaw, and streets that are so steep they look like that street-bending scene…