Spain

There is so much to say about this vibrant country: The major cities are Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia all of which offer unique traditions, languages and sites. Tapas is almost as much a cultural activity as a style of eating. La Siesta is the well-known nap of two to three hours in the heat of the afternoon. The Flamenco is made up of six parts: singing, guitar, dance, vocals, hand-clapping, and finger snapping - awesome! Originating in Valencia, paella is a rice dish prepared with meat or seafood. Wonderful wine from deep red Riojas to the light and sparkling Cava although sangria is probably the country’s most famous drink. . Salvador Dali was born near Barcelona is a cultural icon. Spain’s most famous architect, Gaudí’s work can be admired in Barcelona. The only downside is bullfighting has been occurring in Spain since the Roman times but is hopefully going to end soon - the last fight was in Catalonia when the majority voted for a ban in 2015.

Continue ReadingSpain

A Taste of Tallinn

Tallinn is Estonia's capital which has retained its medieval walled cobblestoned Old Town which is considered an Old World Treasure and UNESCO heritage site. It is built on a limestone hill and is lined picturesque churches, merchant's houses and underground tunnels. It provides the perfect photo opportunities and the chance to sample some unique food and drink. The longest tunnel in the world measuring between 93-103Kms Helsinki-Tallinn railway tunnel should be inaugurated in the 2030s at a cost of 15b Euros.

Continue ReadingA Taste of Tallinn

Estonia

Situated in north-eastern Europe, Estonia juts out into the Baltic Sea, which surrounds the country to the north and west. To the east Estonia is bounded by Russia and to the south it is bounded by Latvia. Estonia’s area includes some 1,500 islands and islets. Estonia is currently one of the safest countries in Europe, but between the 1990s and the 2000s, organised crime prevailed. The Singing Revolution is a commonly used name for events that led to the restoration of independence of the Baltic nations from the Soviet Union at the end of the Cold War with spontaneous mass evening singing demonstrations at the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds.

Continue ReadingEstonia

Mirissa Beach

Mirissa Beach is the largest fishing port on the south coast. It is popular with tourists and is the base from where to set off on whale watching activities. In the evening it transformed to many little pop up restaurants on the beach offering freshly caught seafood. It has a good vibe.

Continue ReadingMirissa Beach

Ahangama

Ahangama is quiet with white sandy beaches and is notorious for stilted fisherman posing for photographs. It is situated in the south of Sri Lanka half way between Galle and Mirissa Beach.

Continue ReadingAhangama

Ella, Sri Lanka

Ceylon as Sri Lanka was previously known, and particularly Ella which is is set high in the hills of this idyllic area evokes visions of colonial tea plantations ...this is a place to soak up the peace and quiet and to watch the tea grow... It is a place where the Sinhalese and Tamil cultures co-exist. Learning to cook the local cuisine here is a MUST and it is the starting or end point for the famed blue train rail journey which winds through the tea plantations and mountains passes and must be done in 3rd class to yield the full experience! Don't forget to scale Ella Rock or Little Adam's Peak, go zip lining and visit Nine Arch Bridge as well as the roaring Diyaluma Falls...

Continue ReadingElla, Sri Lanka

Madeira: Day 9 – Scuba Diving, Picnic under the Palms followed by Vintage Dinner

Madeirais an outstanding scuba diving destination and haven for an endless variety of marine flora and fauna as well as being one of the best spots for whale and dolphin watching. With the nearby Azores it makes the largest whale sanctuary in the world!

Continue ReadingMadeira: Day 9 – Scuba Diving, Picnic under the Palms followed by Vintage Dinner