Utah’s lesser-known natural wonders

It’s a stark contrast. Thirty minutes ago, I was standing on the rim of Utah’s dramatic Bryce Canyon, looking down at a labyrinth of pink-hued hoodoos, pinnacles and buttresses. Now, I’m on an elevated plateau in nearby Kodachrome Basin State Park, admiring dozens of towering sandstone chimneys. The difference? In Bryce Canyon, every trail wasContinue reading “Utah’s lesser-known natural wonders”

The nine things you should do in Gdansk, Poland

THE ONE HOTELYou can find grander and more luxurious hotels in Gdansk, but few are as well-located and character-full as Hotel Krolewski. Housed in an imposing 17th-century brick granary on Olowianka Island in the Motlawa River, it’s a short stroll from the city’s major attractions and enjoys a delightful waterfront locale. The 30 rooms areContinue reading “The nine things you should do in Gdansk, Poland”

Paros, Greece – the Cyclades’ lesser-known gem

It’s not every day you get to follow in the footsteps of a saint. But the reason we’re here on Paros, the third largest island in the Greek Cyclades, is the same one that forced Saint Helena here in the 4th century – the meltemi, an angry wind that roars through the region in August.Continue reading “Paros, Greece – the Cyclades’ lesser-known gem”

Polar snorkelling in Antarctica

“Not for the faint-hearted” is how Aurora Expeditions’ website describes polar snorkelling. Which is concerning because when it comes to near-freezing temperatures, I am most definitely faint of heart. Yet, here I am, fumbling awkwardly with a pair of fins on the rocky shoreline of the Antarctic Peninsula while steeling myself for water that’s hoveringContinue reading “Polar snorkelling in Antarctica”

Cross-border cuisine in San Diego and Tijuana

Ask a San Diego local where to find the best Mexican food, and they’ll probably say “Mexico”. The border is only a 45-minute tram ride away and, contrary to public perception, is easy to navigate. After passing through an uninviting prison-style gate labelled “TO MEXICO”, I fill in a simple immigration form, show my passportContinue reading “Cross-border cuisine in San Diego and Tijuana”

Ramen tasting tour in Tokyo, Japan

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Nov 30, 2019 Frank Striegl is a walking advert for the nutritional merits of ramen. As the author of one of Tokyo’s leading ramen blogs (5amramen.com), the fit, lean 35-year-old eats around 350 bowls a year. Clearly, that wasn’t enough because in 2017 he started offering ramen tasting toursContinue reading “Ramen tasting tour in Tokyo, Japan”

A week in the Peruvian jungle

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Nov 16, 2019 I’ve decided I’ll call it Mothy McMothface. Apparently, if I find a new species of moth at this light trap deep in the Peruvian jungle, I can name it. I approach the illuminated white sheet with my jam jar feeling quietly confident. Since Rainforest Expeditions startedContinue reading “A week in the Peruvian jungle”

Review of White City House, London

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Dec 20, 2018 White City House is the latest instalment in Soho House’s global empire of private members’ clubs. In fewer than 25 years the group has blossomed from a single “house” in London’s Soho to a sprawling network of 23 properties, mostly located in Europe and north America.Continue reading “Review of White City House, London”

Sunset Hummer tour in Moab, Utah

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Dec 1, 2018 “It’s OK to scream,” says Mike. Good to know because I’m about to start wailing like a teething toddler. Ahead of us is a steeply plunging wall of sandstone and we’re going down it. Fast. I can’t see what’s at the bottom but I’m fairly sureContinue reading “Sunset Hummer tour in Moab, Utah”

Tea time in Hong Kong

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Nov 24, 2018 As someone who grew up in England, I’m no stranger to tea. The Brits take their tea seriously, using it as a national remedy for almost any stressful event (Lost a leg? You’ll feel better after a nice cuppa). However, they are mere amateurs compared withContinue reading “Tea time in Hong Kong”

America’s best restaurant – Highlands Bar & Grill in Birmingham, Alabama

Traveller, Sun-Herald, Australia – Nov 18, 2018 According to the James Beard Awards, the prestigious annual celebration of America’s culinary excellence, the US’s best restaurant is not in the gourmet capitals of New York, Chicago or LA, it is in – are you ready? – Birmingham, Alabama. In May, the awards declared Highlands Bar &Continue reading “America’s best restaurant – Highlands Bar & Grill in Birmingham, Alabama”

Cycling the Waterford Greenway, Ireland

Traveller, Sun-Herald, Australia – Nov 4, 2018 Few cities are as synonymous with a product as Waterford in south-east Ireland. The renowned crystal maker was based there from 1783 until 2009, when its owning company, Waterford Wedgwood, went into receivership. Hundreds of manufacturing jobs were lost and tourist numbers dwindled. As Phil Brennan, owner ofContinue reading “Cycling the Waterford Greenway, Ireland”

GoBoat trip on Regent’s Canal, London

Traveller, Sun-Herald, Australia – Oct 28, 2018 “Give way to everything” is the crux of the safety briefing at GoBoat’s headquarters in Paddington Basin. London’s canal system might not be the industrial thoroughfare it once was but there are still plenty of things to trouble the first-time boater. Fortunately, the top speed of the vesselContinue reading “GoBoat trip on Regent’s Canal, London”

Unclaimed Baggage Centre in Scottsboro, Alabama

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Oct 27, 2018 Thanks to advances in bag-tracking technology, the amount of checked luggage that fails to reach its destination is now less than half a per cent. But given airlines carried more than four billion bags last year, that still means more than 20 million bags went unclaimed.Continue reading “Unclaimed Baggage Centre in Scottsboro, Alabama”

Five new family-friendly attractions in New York

Escape, Sunday Telegraph, Australia – Oct 7, 2018 New Yorkers have a love/hate relationship with Times Square, the dazzling neon-lit intersection of Broadway and Seventh Avenue. On the one hand, it’s home to arguably the world’s most famous theatre district; on the other, it’s a tourist magnet that’s perpetually choked with people. Until recently, itContinue reading “Five new family-friendly attractions in New York”

Review of L’Oscar hotel, London

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Sep 22, 2018 It’s safe to assume that when preacher Dr Alexander MacLaren laid the foundation stone for the Baptist Church Headquarters in London in 1901, he never envisaged it would one day become one of the capital’s most decadent hotels. The imposing Grade II-listed building on Southampton RowContinue reading “Review of L’Oscar hotel, London”

Bar tour in Budapest, Hungary

Traveller, Sun-Herald, Australia – Aug 19, 2018 “I guess she can drive!” we all cry, clinking our glasses in unison. According to Fanni, our smiling guide from Urban Adventures, this is the closest approximation to “egeszsegedre!” or “cheers!” in Hungarian. Given Hungary’s location in the heart of Europe, you’d think its language might resemble thatContinue reading “Bar tour in Budapest, Hungary”

Cruising on the Danube with U by Uniworld

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Sep 15, 2018 “Everyone pray for rain so we can make it down the Danube.” Not exactly what you want to hear from the captain at the start of a river cruise. Europe has been basking in a heatwave all summer and the lack of rain means the DanubeContinue reading “Cruising on the Danube with U by Uniworld”

Six of the best hikes in Hong Kong

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Aug 25, 2018 1. LAMMA ISLAND A 30-minute ferry ride from Central, this car-free oasis offers hikers a rewarding montage of beaches, history and gourmet seafood. Start with a poke around the stores in the laid back township of Yung Shue Wan before following a meandering seven-kilometre trail thatContinue reading “Six of the best hikes in Hong Kong”

Kigali Genocide Memorial in Rwanda

Traveller, Sydney Morning Herald, Australia – Aug 18, 2018 Visiting a memorial that chillingly describes how a million people were murdered in a 100-day killing spree is probably the last thing you’ll want to do when you arrive in Rwanda. But you should. Firstly, to pay your respects, but also because it might be theContinue reading “Kigali Genocide Memorial in Rwanda”