If you happen to be an adventurous type and you’re in La Paz (Bolivia) by any chance, you can’t miss out riding down the World’s Most Dangerous Road on a mountain bike! Sure, you really need to know how to ride a bike in order to do this safely. By no means this is a challenging ride. When we heard about the existence of the mountain bike tour down the risky Death Road, we had to think twice. We asked around for advice at several tour operators and mountain bike specialists. We made up our mind and decided we should just go for it!
Crossing the Rio del Plata from Buenos Aires by ferry, it’s easy to get to Montevideo in Uruguay. An excellent trip if you visit Argentina and got some spare days left.
We took the ferry to Colonia and proceeded our trip by bus since that was a cheaper option. But you may as well take the fast ferry from Buenos Aires to Montevideo (Buquebus, Seacat Colonia) and enjoy a great weekend in Uruguay.
Although not to be compared with Buenos Aires (Montevideo is smaller and has a different vibe), Montevideo is a cool city and there’s plenty of cool things to do.
There’s a reason the Chinese ancient walled city of Pingyao is listed as one of the best conserved walled cities in the world. It takes a few seconds to notice when entering the city though one of the gates. Wandering through the streets you’ll find countless traditional buildings, colorful lanterns and picturesque courtyards. If you would picture a period film showing ancient China, it sure would look precisely like Pingyao.
Hong Kong has been on our travel list for years. This year, we were finally able to visit this far away destination from which we heard many positive things. Most of all, we couldn’t wait to taste the famous Hong Kong style food! Or take some amazing photographs of the illuminated skyline which we’ve often seen on travel programs and postcards.
Here’s a nice impression of Hong Kong city by night, definitely the best time to stroll through town or take the ferry to Kowloon. You’ll be overwhelmed by the fantastic illumination of the city!
STANLEY – HONG KONG
Hong Kong is a cool city, but it can also get crowded and overwhelming at some point. So if you book a trip to Hong Kong, consider visiting at least one of its beaches. I read a few blogs and browsed through the Lonely Planet and it brought me to the idea to take a little trip further south. After two full days of sightseeing in Hong Kong we were looking forward to enjoy beach life in Stanley, one of the oldest villages in Hong Kong Island.
Welcome to Cambodia, a beautiful country located in South-East Asia. Many years we’ve dreamed about visiting the temples of Angkor and appreciating the diversity of landscapes, from paddy fields and rural sceneries to the beaches in the south. Also, we were particularly excited to taste the authentic Cambodian (Khmer) cuisine. We were told that it’s a fine combination between Thai and Vietnamese food, yet with its own touch.
We recently spent two lovely weeks in Chiang Mai and the country side. We really enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere you find in this charming destination. People are very friendly and welcoming. There are precious temples everywhere and the food aromas at the markets and eateries really touch your olfactory senses. We also spoiled ourselves with massages every day.
Then there’s the laid back countryside where you find the traditional way of living. The stretched out paddy fields are bright green, full of live and surrounded by trees and mountains. We loved to cycle through the countryside and visit different places such as temples, local farms and even a ‘Grand Canyon’ filled with bright blue water.
A true highlight was a visit to an elephant camp which has been on my travel list for years! We drove all the way to the mountains, through forests and then into the jungle. Here we learned about the elephant’s habitat. We spoiled the elephants with treats, mud baths and we played with them in the river. It was amazing …
Chiang Mai has surprised us in many ways. See it yourself in a travel video we made to inspire you. Enjoy!
Japan is full of surprises when it comes to local customs, fashion, art and gadgets. Find out what peculiar things surprised us the most during our round trip through the country.
ARTISTIC MANHOLE COVERS
Japan is known for its beautiful art which you find in temples, museums and art galleries. Yet, there’s another art form which we found quite startling. When walking through a street in Japan – be it in a city or a village – you notice that manhole covers are beautifully decorated. I’ve read that this curious phenomenon started in 1985, when a bureaucrat working at the ministry of construction came up with the idea to let municipalities design their own manhole covers.
I really liked to spot the designs in every city I visited. We photographed them to make a cool collage. There seems to be more than 6.000 artistic manhole covers all over Japan, each of them containing local symbols. Curious isn’t it?
Hong Kong has been on my travel list for years. This year, we were finally able to visit this far away destination from which we heard many positive things. Most of all, we couldn’t wait to taste the famous Hong Kong style food! Or take some amazing photographs of the illuminated skyline which we’ve often seen on travel programs and postcards.
Welcome to China, one of the oldest civilized nations in the world with more than 50 ethnic groups populating the mainland. After travelling through the country by train, bus and air from north to south-west, we saw and experienced many contradictions. In Beijing we were overwhelmed by the size of the city, the ancient Forbidden City and the labyrinth of narrow alleys of the so-called ‘ Hutongs’ (traditional neighborhoods). Xi’an we experienced to be crowded and chaotic, whereas Chengdu was more regulated and very modern. In Dali (Yunnan Province) we immersed ourselves in the rural, laid-back life, enjoying the fascinating landscapes and the colorful market ‘Shaping’ where the ethnic Dai people sell their fresh products.
To quote the Lonely Planet, China is:
‘Antique yet up-to-the-minute, familiar yet unrecognisable, outwardly urban but quintessentially rural, conservative yet path-breaking, space-age but old-fashioned, China is a land of mesmerising contradictions.’
Lonely Planet. ‘China Travel Guide’.
See it for yourselves: watch our travel video and get a glimpse of our adventures in China!
Beijing – Pingyao – Xi’an – Chengdu – Lijiang – Dali – Kunming
With over 2,8 million inhabitants, Osaka is Japan’s third largest and (after Tokyo) second most important city. The city is only 30 minutes away from it’s refined little brother Kyoto, however there is a world of difference between the two. Osaka is a modern, big and flashy city, with huge neon lit buildings, elevated highways, interesting architecture and… beautiful green parks.
We really enjoyed Osaka (maybe because there are many similarities with our hometown Rotterdam?). Therefore we’d like to share our favorite areas with you!
Our journey through Japan in September 2015 has been simply marvelous. All of our expectations were met and even exceeded! What stood out to us were the lovely, polite and friendly Japanese people.
They are excellent hosts and really make you feel at ease. Also, they are very proud of their culture and country and they show it!
Obviously, we took some fantastic footage of different cities we visited in Japan. Geerard (as always) made a cool compilation of the material we have. The result? A stunning video that shows some of Japan’s most beautiful places, its culture, and much more… Get inspired!