Travel Stories

Czech Republic and Prague for New Year

For New Year, my partner and I decided at the last minute to go abroad, having seen in the New Year in Edinburgh for the last three years. We wanted somewhere we could do a bit of sightseeing, somewhere quite chilly (a warm New Year seemed wrong somehow) and somewhere with good beer… Looking at the map of Europe, we decided the Czech Republic was cultural, cold, and definitely full of good beer, so we booked to go to Prague for 4 nights!

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Japan's Sleepy City, Yokohama

Living in Tokyo as students, we were looking for a change of pace.  The famous nearby city, Yokohama, grabbed our interest when we saw the 'big O', Yokohama's Ferris Wheel, advertised on a large poster in a busy Tokyo subway station. 

Our interest was peaked, and we jumped on a train the next morning to check it out.Tokyo is busy, hot is described as the most congested city in the world.  Yokohama was a refreshing change; still a city, but calmer, quieter, with a more relaxed pace and more space in general.We walked down a quiet concrete lane, watching a bird as it circled above a nearby field. 

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Party Safely

Although I have had many holidays to destinations in countries all across the world, I think it could be said that I don't as much travel to places as I move there. The longest trip I have ever taken without having a job was for one month in Thailand. Even my round the world tour ended abruptly in my first stop off in Hong Kong where I got a teaching job and ended up staying for 8 months.

Years on and I now have the privilege of living split between the US, UK and Peru in my role as the Director of a charity, SKIP – Supporting Kids In Peru. SKIP works in a disadvantaged area located on the outskirts of the city of Trujillo, on the North Coast of Peru.

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Day Trip to Kamakura

Although Tokyo is never boring with its bright lights, endless restaurants and shops and its unique and diverse nightlife, a dramatic change in scenery is only a train ride away. We headed south-west on a crisp, clear winter’s morning towards a town called Kamakura to take a break from the busy city life and immerse ourselves in culture, nature and a treasure hunt for the giant Buddha statue, ‘Daibutsu’.
 Kamakura isn’t too difficult to get to. Only an hour away from Tokyo Central Station on the JR Yokosuka Line at 890 yen one way (around £5.70), it’s an inexpensive and worthwhile trip.
I yawned as I held the handrail on the train, smiling at my friends who grinned sleepily back – it had been an early start and the winter air had pinked our cheeks and tired us out a little. 

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Hiking & Trekking Safety

Trekking can be an amazing experience, whether you’re hitting the Inca Trail or trekking through the Scottish Highlands. However, there are a number of safety concerns that you should take into account before you embark on your outdoor adventure.

Being a keen hiker myself, I always prepare for a hike by researching thoroughly beforehand, this includes checking weather forecasts for weather warnings, researching the trail, ensuring I have the appropriate kit and supplies (including lashings of sun cream for my sunburn prone fair skin!) and getting plenty of rest the night before.

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Experiencing Auschwitz; In the Shadow of ‘Dark Tourism’

When I informed my friends and family that my Father and I were going to visit the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum, their responses fell into two categories; ‘Wow, that will be really interesting’ with a look of genuine interest or ‘What on earth do you want to go there for?’ with a look of complete bewilderment. Having visited other ‘Dark Tourism’ sites including the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields in Cambodia and Ground Zero in New York, I felt that I was fully prepared for the sheer dreadfulness that awaited us.

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The Airport Mishap

An Airport is a place many people don’t enjoy being in. A place many consider connected to stress. There are many things that might go wrong in an airport: the flight may be delayed or cancelled, or they may ship your bags off to somewhere else. I always make sure to put the most important things in my hand luggage just in case something like that was to occur.

Thankfully there are many places to de-stress. Places like bookstores, restaurants, clothes stores, hell they might even have a massage parlour. If given time to kill and money to spend, there should always be something to do at an airport.

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