Category: Exploring

View from Senglea towards Birgu

Malta – Truly Mediterranean

January in Northern Europe – the Christmas excitement is over but the weather is still far from good. Perfect timing to soak in a bit of sun in the Mediterranean. While I have no (current) ambitions of ever visiting every country on the planet, I do make an effort to...

Al-Balad

Jeddah – Saudi Arabia is open for Tourism

For a very long time the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) has been notoriously difficult for tourists to visit. Unless you had a business invitation or intended to visit for religious reasons, you had practically no chance to enter the country. After a brief exemption for a racecar event about...

Matera – the Underground City

Our 10 day Puglia trip was nearing its end. After a relaxing couple of days in and around Ostuni, it was time for our final stop. After a drive through lovely Martina Franca and a stop in Mottola for lunch, we arrived mid-afternoon in Matera. The city has a very...

Ostuni

Ostuni

From Sternatia and Lecce we headed back up north into Brindisi province for our next base, Ostuni. We stayed there for another three nights and explored the charming town and the surrounding area. Apparently in peak season the city’s population can swell up from 32’000 people to over 100’000. We...

Fiat Tagliero Building

Weekend trip to Asmara

I’ve been fascinated by places with an unusual colonial history, leading to a special mix of culture and architecture. Examples of this on the blog are the former German colony of Qingdao in China or Portuguese traces in Dili / East Timor. Italy never had many colonies. You could say...

Pyramid of Khafre

Cairo – Mother of the Earth

Cairo. Around 20m people. One world’s largest cities and the largest in the Middle East. I’ve been wanting to visit this unique city for its rich history and finally managed to plan a trip. The political situation has been fragile and tourists numbers have dwindled, only to recently pick up...

Alexandria Corniche

Alexandria – Mediterranean Egypt

After spontaneously changing my travel plans from Turkmenistan to Egypt, I found myself, around 12 hours after booking the flight, arriving at Alexandria’s swanky new Borg El Arab International Airport shortly before midnight. The very first impression was: lots (and I mean LOTS) of men in white uniforms. I was...

Flame Towers seen from the Maiden Tower

Baku – Azerbaijan

Ever since my trip to the “Stans” three years ago, I’ve been wanting to go back to that part of the world. Back then I did not get a visa in time for a visit to Turkmenistan, so that has remained on the bucket list. The chance presented itself head...

Oganzaki

Last Stop: Ishigaki

We visited Japan in March when it was still cold and grey back in Europe. Weather in Japan could have been better, could have been worse but I knew I wanted to play it safe an include a stop with guaranteed shorts and t-shirt weather. While looking for possible destinations,...

Near the Imperial Palace

Tokyo

Hardly any first time (or second or third) time visitor skips Tokyo in their Japan itinerary. Not only because it is the main gateway to the county, the capital and a fascinating city of some 14 million people. But also because the city is so rich in history, culture and...