Spending time in Oslo

Perhaps it was because it’s a Sunday or some national holiday I thought, or maybe we’re in the wrong part of town. When we walked out of the central train station onto the main pedestrian street Karl Johans Gate, I couldn’t understand why Oslo was so tranquil and quiet.  After a couple of days I realized that it is always this relaxed. Despite being Norway’s largest … Continue reading Spending time in Oslo

Baltic crossing: Gdańsk to Nynäsham

Staring through the glass of the bus window ito the darkness of the northern Polish countryside, stiff and tired from the ten hour ride from Krakow, I realised I knew nothing of Gdańsk, the town we were about to arrive at. Even so, I had assumed that a port town on the edge of the Baltic Sea would be dank, bleak and inhospitable. As we … Continue reading Baltic crossing: Gdańsk to Nynäsham

Venice dinner dash

  Within about five minutes of leaving the train station I knew that we were lost. It should have been simple – head directly south and we’ll find the restaurant we’re looking for. Racing through the looming darkness past crowds of dawdling tourists onto yet another dank canal, another crumbling church or a suspiciously familiar dead-end piazza, we realized that this task was beyond the … Continue reading Venice dinner dash

Avoiding the beach and bad puns in Monopoli, Puglia

While staying in Rome we often wondered where all the Italians were. Outside the central tourist areas it often felt like a ghost town. No need to worry – we found them all at the beach in Puglia. Sprawled for miles across rocks, sand, pebbles, car parks, campgrounds, hanging off cliff faces, along old castle walls, and lying on boardwalks, the holidaying Italians were hemmed … Continue reading Avoiding the beach and bad puns in Monopoli, Puglia

All roads lead to Roman-style decadence and excess

Or perhaps just cheap online fights lead to Rome. After flying from Luxor we spent a few days in a little boutique hotel in the central Campo Marzio area near the Piazza del Paradiso. Here, amongst Renaissance architecture and throngs of sandalled tourists, we rediscovered exquisite Western delicacies that had been absent from the African campgrounds and hostels during our previous four months of travel. … Continue reading All roads lead to Roman-style decadence and excess

Double Dutch

Amsterdam is a small sheep farming town in Mpumalanga, South Africa, lying next to the border with Swaziland. Evidently this is not the Amsterdam we are currently in. Amsterdam, Netherlands also serves as a convenient stop over on the way to its former colonial outpost. At the Gollem bar, just off Spuistraat, we enjoyed some La Chouffe beer and what amounted to a wheel and … Continue reading Double Dutch