Category April A-Z Challenge

A-Z April Challenge – Wat Pho Temple, Bangkok

Bangkok can best be described as manic and magnificent in equal measure. Amongst all of the wonderful chaos you have the splendour of the Grand Palace and its nearby little brother, the Wat Pho Temple (or Wat Phra Chetuphon Vimolmangklararm Rajwaramahaviharn to give its official name!). The grounds and temples are splendid, but the undoubted main […]

A-Z April Challenge – Volubilis, Morocco

During an independent tour of Morocco we headed north out of Marrakesh to the cities of Meknes & Fes. The scenic route took us through the Atlas Mountains where we slept in tents and visited waterfalls, raging rivers and colourful markets. En route to the incredible city of Fes, we stopped at the Roman ruins […]

A-Z April Challenge – Uros Floating Islands, Peru

Back in 2001 Hamish and I were in Peru and as part of our tour of the country we visited Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world. I do not remember too much about Puno apart from it being blessed cold in September, the starting point for the […]

A-Z April Challenge – Tuol Sleng Detention Centre, Phnom Penh

This is not my normal style of post, but a story that should be repeated a million times so all are aware of what horrors went on in Cambodia in the seventies……… In the same way that no visit to the wonderful city of Kraków should be unaccompanied by a sombre, thought-provoking side trip to […]

A-Z April Challenge, St Simeon’s Monastery, Syria

St Simeon’s Monastery is located some 30km north of Aleppo. St Simeon is the guy who legend has it was driven up the pole! Simeon the Stylite lived for 37 years in the 5th century on top of a one metre square platform atop a 15 metre high pillar. He had already lived in solitude […]

A-Z April Challenge, Royal Palace, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

I visited Cambodia in 2015 as part of my 50th birthday celebrations, starting out in wonderful Phnom Penh. Having been struck dumb by the sadness of the macabre Killing Fields & Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum where the Khmer Rouge meted out such misery, I was somewhat revived by the beauty of the Royal Palace. It […]

A-Z April Challenge – Prambanan, Indonesia

For an Islamic country as Indonesia is, it has some fine religious buildings representing other faiths. I have already blogged in the A-Z Challenge about the amazing Javanese Buddhist temple of Borobudur and now it is the turn of the nearby Hindu shrine of Prambanan. I visited Java & Bali in 1997 (we were actually […]

A-Z April Challenge – Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan

I have only visited or stayed in a very small handful of iconic hotels such as the Baron in Aleppo, Hotel Lisboa in Macao, Hotel Nacional in Havana, Raffles in Singapore, La Mamounia in Marrakesh or the Hotel de Paris in Monte Carlo. The Old Cataract is up there with them. I didn’t stay at […]

A-Z April Challenge – Norias of Hama, Syria

In May 2009 I was lucky enough to visit Syria. This is how it was before the tragic conflict. Hama is famous for its norias, huge wooden water wheels used to lift water from the River Orontes to irrigate the crops. It is claimed that they date back to 1100 BC and although no longer […]

A-Z April Challenge – Mekong River

The mighty Mekong has its source in the Tibetan Plateau in China and flows through China’s Yunnan Province and onto Myanmar, Laos, Thailand and Cambodia before reaching the South China Sea in Southern Vietnam. It is the 12th longest river in the world at around 4,350 km and is the lifeblood for millions of South […]