The West Lake is a wonderful place to get lost in some dramatic hill drenched scenery while the willows rustle in the wind around you. Oh and no doubt you’ll be able to hear traditional Chinese music drifting across the water from somewhere. The time of year that I went meant that the trees were awash with flaming reds, burnt oranges and every shade of yellow in-between, interspersed with greens here and there. Explore towering pines, fields of ferns, bushes and other shrubbery, meander through bamboo and wander through forests of maple type trees bursting with colour. See if you can locate the stones that create a path along a stream and the statues of children playing in the water, locate the zig-zagging bridge that takes you out onto the lake itself, the statues commemorating brave warriors and see if you can find the lover’s seating area hidden on a hill. There’s plenty to try and find!
It was July 2010 when I first entered the massive country that is India. I was only there for a short while; just over a week, but the country left a lasting impression. At the time I didn’t enjoy it much, however, upon reflection, I think India is one of the those countries that, when you look back on your time there you do actually want to return and experience just a little bit more of its hugely diverse culture. Something I don’t think I appreciated as much as I should have.
Everest Base Camp. The first of many camps leading to the highest mountain on Earth. The trip that got me there was easily one of the most amazing periods of my life. It sealed the deal with my love affair of travel and it has most definitely helped shape me into the person I am today. It’s something I look back fondly on and one that I constantly wish to relive.
“…we headed down to river, stripped to our underwear and went for a swim. The water was warm enough to feel like a bath and the bed was sandy. The current was strong so we’d float down and try and swim against the current back up. In time an elephant came down to the river to wash and it’s owner allowed us to spend time with it.”
“There are over 12,000 streets within the Medina and although we were lost in the shadowy underworld, hidden away from the sun, many of the streets had wooden awnings with intricate designs that allowed patterned sunlight to fall on the street below.”
“If there was one thing I came away from this trip with, it was a sense that no matter how bad the world may seem, there are always caring and giving people who do nice things, just because they can. “