Place Reviews (Thursday)

Category Archives for Place Reviews (Thursday).

First Run for 2016 in Hobart, Australia

I am attempting to do a fun run in a different city each month for 2016. The first run was a 10km (six mile) run in Hobart, Tasmania which is part of the Cadbury Marathon. The Cadbury Chocolate Company are a key part of  the city’s economy with a presence there since 1922. They have sponsored this race for about a decade, I think. The 10km run starts and finishes at the Cadbury factory and runs past the famous Museum of Old and New Art (MONA). The last section of the race includes a steep climb back…

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Lindisfarne – The Holy Island

One of my fascinations is tidal islands-islands that are cut off for part of the day. I am not sure how many there are in the world but I have now visited three: Mont St Muchel in France Mount st Michael in Cornwall Most recently Lindisfarne off the North East Coast of England I was so excited to travel 1.6km (1 mile) from the British mainland to the island via a causeway that goes under water twice a day when the North Sea sweeps in and cuts Lindisfarne off from England. We went past warning…

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Mindil Beach Sunset Markets

Whenever and wherever, I am travelling, I always try and squeeze a market in. Just enjoyed a beautiful sunset which accompanies the Dry Season Mindil Markets in the Northern Australian City of Darwin. The setting of these markets has to be one of the most spectacular in the world! There is almost every type of Asian food available, along with exotic meats like camel burgers and croc steak sandwiches, frozen bananas and local mushrooms! Lots of Aussie trouristy type stuff including didgeridoos, crocodile leather purses and wallets, stock whips and local jewellery. Tonight was the first market…

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Hip Hua Hin – Place Report

Few tourists to Thailand include Hua Hin on their agenda which is a shame. At the risk of spoiling the town with a sudden over run of tourists, this beautiful relaxing town 200 km (120 miles) south of Bangkok is well worth at least a couple of days. Far from the “excitement” of Phuek nightlife and Bangkok, Hua Hin has been enjoyed by generations of Thais for weekends and vacations. Originally known as Samore Riang  or “rows of rocks”, it was adopted by the Royal Family as their seaside resort in the 1920s. Today, it is very popular amongst Thais who come…

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Place Review: Phuket

There are a few destinations in the world that immediately spell party. These include: Bali, Ibiza, Miami and Porto Heli (Greece). The list also needs to include the small southern Thai island of Phuket which is invaded by 14 million tourists  every year.  They come to get massaged, swim, snorkel, eat, drink and dance. Many do not know why they go to Phuket, just lured by its reputation as a fun place. I first came to Phuket just after the 2004 Tsunami had ripped through. It did not capture my heart! I came back this week to…

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Neglected Newcastle on Tyne

I am not suggesting that Newcastle looks or feel neglected, it is just a place overlooked by tourists and unfairly critiqued by UK citizens. Yet this ancient settlement at the North of England has a lot going for it. It is well worth a day or three to visit. In Roman times, the city was a fort on Hadrian’s wall known as Pons Aelius.  William the Conqueror in 1080 commanded his son to construct a “New Castle” on the site of the old Roman fort. For many years, a grim industrial city, the loss of UK manufacturing has transformed the…

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Cool Copenhagen

In 2014, I was lucky enough to visit my sixtieth country Denmark. Copenhagen is the 183rd city with a population of over 100,000 I have visited in my 50 years! Flew into Copenhagen with Finnair (see Tuesday’s post), zipped through the very easy arrival procedures as were already in the Schengen zone, found the metro, bought a pass and were heading into the downtown in minutes. Oh, if arrival at so many cities was this easy.   Asthetics: 9/10 How many cities in the world, have a harbour that is clean enough to swim in?…

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Scotland Votes Today!

The referendum on whether Scotland should be an independent country will take place today. I lived in Scotland for three years and have visited many more times. In fact, having been to the Northern Scottish Islands known as the Orkneys plus all major cities (Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling), the Highlands, West Coast and more, I have seen more of the country, than many residents have! It is a stunning place to be wild about travel in! I also have Scottish siblings and friends so discussions over the last few days have been interesting. It seems to me that culturally…

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Chilling in Chiang Mai

I have been to Thailand a few times now but never to Chiang Mai until now. I am very sorry to have left the city alone for so long. The city is a little more isolated than other parts of Thailand but still attracts approximately five million visitors per year- 40 per cent of whom are from outside Thailand. I soon discovered why it was placed at 24 on TripAdvisor’s  “25 Best Destinations in the World” in 2012. Chiang Mai is 700 km  (420 miles) from Bangkok. Getting there requires a flight of about an hour or a 12 hour…

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