Blogs by Continent

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‘Carl says there are too many loggy obstacles and too much mud between us for them to be able to charge – I’ve got a whole series of pictures of flapping trunks and angry red eyes.

São Tomé e Principe

‘Many bats in this one’, Agostinho says encouragingly, as we approach the fourth tunnel. We’re following the water channel down from the top of the mountain, after climbing up to the waterfall.


It’s difficult to be grumpy when all the Angolans are so delightfully friendly. Even the men in immigration.

Blogs by Country

21st September 1991

Australia – Classic Tour

I booked a cheap hotel in Kings Cross and found out why it was such a good deal when I got there. I knew nothing about Kings Cross (it’ the red light district area) and when I arrived a guy was standing in the doorway wearing a leather mini and a blonde wig. I got take away and stuck a chair under the door handle.
20th October 2001

Australia – Three Sides

The beaches in the Whitsundays are truly stunning- the best in the world? At aptly named Paradise the silver sand stretches forever and when you do reach the cerulean sea a school of rays are basking gracefully in the clearest of water.
10th September 2013

Cook Islands

Aitutaki is billed as the most beautiful lagoon in the world, so expectations are high. And it is stunning.
14th September 2013


Finally arrive in Fiji but in unscheduled Suva. Only an hour late. Then a taxi ride across the island back to Nadi (say it Nandi) with 2 other stranded passengers. It's really very pleasant, the sun is shining and there are great views of coral beaches and the reefs and islands all along the coast road. About 330 islands here.
13th September 2013

French Polynesia

The views from the air are sublime. This is a volcanic peak surrounded by a fabulous deep blue lagoon and scattered motu, with the turquoise shallows on the edge of the lagoon.
21st July 2017


I’m sitting next to a lady from Kiribati (say it Kiribas) who lives in the States, but is going back to see her family. She thinks I should stay for two weeks, not four nights. I’m not telling her that the guide books say there is little to do and I’m only staying for four nights because there isn’t another plane till then. She also wants to know how old I am. She says that age is venerated here, not like America. Good.
6th August 2017


Nothing I read about Nauru is promising and my expectations are low. Alexander Downer (Australian foreign minister) is said to have rated it the most unpleasant country he had visited and I’m told ‘it’s only visited by the very curious’. But even my low expectations so far have been horribly exceeded, in the wrong direction.
28th July 2017

New Caledonia

The first thing I see approaching the capital Noumea, in the darkness, is the golden arches of MacDonald’s. There are two lane highways, traffic jams and every sign of western civilisation.
13th September 1991

New Zealand – North Island

Rotarua is another mandatory stop in New Zealand. The geysers are prolific, exhilarating and stink of sulphur.