When I first moved to New Zealand, I put down roots in Auckland as that’s where my friends lived. With a flat in Grey Lynn as my base, in between freelance web development jobs I explored Hawke’s Bay and Wellington. Later, after living on the South Island for the better part of a year, I returned to the North Island on my very own tiki tour that lead me to Rotorua, Kiwiburn (New Zealand’s regional Burning Man burn), the Coromandels, the Far North, and Raglan, where I finally learned to stand up on a surfboard a week before leaving the country (I really wish I’d gone there first!).
I’m torn: do I go to Croatia and the Dalmation Coast, or, do I visit Portugal, the south of Spain, and Morocco? I have just over two weeks to play with around the end of September, a budget of around $2500-3000, and am travelling solo.
It’s been well over six months since I visited Iceland, and I realize now that I’ve waited to long to recount my time there. As I was only in the country for a few days, I didn’t really have a chance to become familiar with where I was going or what I was seeing. The trip was a stopover on the way home to Toronto from London, and so I tried to cram as much in as possible. Unfortunately, the weather had other ideas!
Being a solo traveller, tours like these are an invaluable way to get out and see an unfamiliar country. While I would much have preferred to rent a car and travel about with friends on my own, that wasn’t an option on this trip. In addition to this day-long tour, I also took the Golden Circle tour that everyone who passes through Iceland takes. These photos are my favourite from the South Shore Adventure trip that I took with Reykjavik Excursions on my third day.
I don’t think I can do Vietnam in 14 days. To do so, would mean being on the move every second day in order to visit all the places I want to go — and that would mean barely having enough time to actually experience where I’m at. I really need an additional week, at the least, in order to do this comfortably.
I think I should plan to visit a country where I don’t have preconceived notions of what I want that trip to be like (Vietnam has long been my dream destination), so that I’m not feeling frustrated and disappointed.
Oh Cusco, how I love you: your terracotta tiled roofs, bright blue skies, your creaky and windy streets, even your pain in the ass resbalosa staircase that left me stopping to catch my breath every three steps. At an altitude of 3400 meters above sea level, heading to Cusco a day after my soroche adventure in the Colca Canyon probably wasn’t the best idea, but it’s where I found myself on Boxing Day. Luckily, the landlady at the Hostal Resbalosa took superb care of me making sure I had plenty of coca tea and water, giving me a fantastic room with a view of the city that I could look at from the comfort of my bed.
When I decided to visit the Colca Canyon during my stay in Arequipa, I had no idea what lay in store for me. The trip I chose was a 2-day excursion that I thought would be “easy”, compared to the other adventure-focused options. Thank god I did, as I was walloped with altitude sickness four hours into the trip, and would spend the better part of the next ten days recovering from its effects. Despite this, this trip was one of the most amazing things I have ever done.