What to do when the trains leave you stranded

Hallo, I am back at home! And never been more happy to be home! This is a Europe/Germany-specific post, as we have had the second major episode of widespread train disruption (nearly half the country) within four weeks thanks to weather here in Germany, and this time, I was well caught in it. I’ll post this without pictures because I didn’t have a free hand with my case and laptop bag, and coffee and pretzels while winding my way to the end of the platform, and neither...

Kailua-Kona: More than Beach Life

… and back to where we started. It’s nearly the end of our time in Hawaii, and since we felt a bit worried we might miss our flight (and with it, two connecting flights) , we decided to spend our last day in Kailua-Kona. I had done the beachfront strip a few days earlier and reported back that it’s all rather touristy, so what can you do? First, the beach. At some point, you gotta swim in the Pacific. We found that the southern end of town...

Visiting Sites on the West Bank of Luxor, and other Luxor Favourites

Luxor Airport was really small, and honestly, not much to shout about. A lot of Nile Cruise tourists would arrive in Hurghada by charter flight. So, forget about public transport from Luxor Airport to the town centre – a taxi it was, and the first shock of haggling a decent price, because as a tourist fresh off a plane, I was easy prey/ very tired and bothered and just wanted to sleep. So it was the next morning before I could really take all this in: I...

Abydos: Visit an underrated jewel in the Nile Valley

As previously reported, I was lucky to meet a German woman in one of the minor sites on the West Bank, we started talking, and before I knew it I had a neat individual itinerary of Nile Valley sights complete with private taxi. And if I had to do it again, I would travel individually again. We were bound to the convoy times (Egypt operated a convoy system for all road travel involving tourists between 1997 and 2008, with no nighttime travel allowed), but apart from that,...

Abu Simbel in a Day? Tricky but possible

Who isn’t interested in ancient Egypt? Probably very few people could deny any fascination with what remains of the Seven Wonders of the world, hieroglyphs and monumental temples. My earliest memories of them are from trips to my grandparents and the 1930’s history encylopaedia they kept in their living room, then ten years we had to kill a few hours before a friends wedding, got comfy in a  bookshop and browsed a oversized coffee table book of the Valley of the Kings, easily accessible from Luxor. That...

Volcano to Kailua-Kona… back round the other side of Big Island

We’re half round the island, and just another three days until we return hone to very early nights and frost, and yet  we’re just been away from home a week – that’s what happens when you start a new job and move house. We better explore as much as much as possible of this beautiful island, which is possible if you have the right transport – your own car. So, healthy breakfast first, as we tossed half a pineapple and a papaya into the blender, along with...