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Strangers on a Minibus – Part 3

Monday Our adventure continued as we traveled from Belgrade to Novi Sad on a high-speed train. Novi Sad is Serbia’s second largest city and is also located on the Danube. This was a nice train. When I say nice, it was spectacular. Unlike some of the grubby rolling stock that…

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Strangers on a Train – Part 2

Wednesday We walked with our bags about half a mile to Zagreb station for an early train toward Bosnia. Our evening destination was Sarajevo, but with issues involving trains in Bosnia, we were going to the Croatian border by train, and then transferring to a minibus. Our second train journey…

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Strangers on a Train – Part 1

My Balkan rail adventure started with a long weekend in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. Three nights in the 3 star Hotel Park was mostly acceptable although the bar had peculiar hours which included shutting at 8pm on a Friday night, and closed all day on Sunday. When I say…

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Poland Road Trip – Part 2

Saturday First stop was a salt mine a few miles outside of Kraków which is a major tourist attraction. Luckily I’d booked the English speaking tour with about 25 people. I think I was the only actual person from England. We started off by descending 64m via a wooden staircase…

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Poland Road Trip – Part 1

I flew club class from Heathrow to Warsaw and was pleased to avoid the summer airport chaos, otherwise known as queueing. A little over two hours later the plane landed in Poland’s capital and I went in search of my hire car- a Nissan Qashqai. Sadly, it was a manual,…

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Hiking the Pyrenees in Andorra – Part 2

Wednesday I woke at 3 am in a very hot room. I couldn’t get back to sleep again so I decided to award myself another “free day”, not to go on the hike with the others, and do my own Paddy hike, (otherwise known as walking on the flat). I…

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Hiking the Pyrenees in Andorra – Part 1

For the second time this year I was on a Vueling flight to Barcelona. You’d think I would’ve learnt my lesson the first time round. No “bag drop” so the queue was going all the way to Crawley. It took an hour to check my bag. After the trauma of…

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Sailing in Split, Croatia

We’d lost Bully to Covid, so the three of us headed to Split on easyJet. We were met at the airport in Split by Antonio who had the personality of a small grey rock. Jim tipped him which was more than he deserved. Having said that, the transfer was free.…

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Five Take Mum to Ireland

We descended into Dublin on three separate flights, for a 3 night jaunt to Ireland in celebration of some sort of milestone. Gatwick was heaving with newly released school kids and the security queue was intimidating. I then saw a priority line, normally reserved for those with a better class…

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Mediterranean Cruise Part 2

Rome, Florence, Cannes, Majorca Civitavecchia, or “Rome”, according to cruise lines, was not exciting either of us. We’d both been there before, we were a little exhaustulated from the day before, and the weather was looking promising for lounging around the pool. Later in the day we stepped off for…

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Mediterranean Cruise Part 1

Barcelona, Corsica, Naples The flight from Gatwick was on an airline called Vueling and after they finished fuelling the Vueling we were bound for Barcelona. To describe the seats as uncomfortable wouldn’t do justice to the protests from my arse. The flight attendants were a bit like prison guards, but…

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Transatlantic Part 4

Our final sea day was cold but sunny so lots of indoor activities. My fifth time in the Bay of Biscay and smooth once again. I’ve been very lucky. The other day we all had a note slipped under the door about some Covid cases on board - crew and…

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La Coruna & Bilbao

La Coruna Our first Spanish port was pretty much on the same longitude as Lisbon, but La Coruna was an hour ahead, meaning late sunsets. I had no plan and my expectations were a little under “low”. The only thing I knew about La Coruna is that they have a…

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The Azores & Lisbon

The Azores After 6 sea days our first part of call was Punta Delgada on the island of Sao Miguel in the Azores. There are nine islands making up the Azores; the largest being Sao Miguel at 293 square miles and the smallest called Corvo at just 7 square miles.…

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Transatlantic Cruise – Part One

I was one of the last to board and one of the few who hadn’t had a COVID test prior to arrival so I was tested by a nice Canadian chap who had the most delicate swab technique. I was grateful. The ship was the Emerald Princess, built in 2007…

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36 Hours in Toronto

It’s been a while since the last blog. I didn’t want to put you through another trip to Aruba (March) and DR (June). I left Heathrow on the 5pm direct flight to Toronto on a 787 Dreamliner. 7 hours later after a pleasant enough flight where the highlight was watching…

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Algarve, Portugal

The chaps and I have just returned from a relaxing, low-key week, staying at a villa in the Algarve region of Portugal. It had been 31 years since the two Simon’s and I were there, when a group of about 16 of us descended on Quarteira and delighted the patrons…

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Hilton Head Island

After 11 days driving around 6 states writing part one of my book, I arrived in Hilton Head to spend Spring Break with Jo and the family and it was very relaxing indeed. Well, apart from changeover day on Saturday when the traffic becomes like Mumbai during rush hour. Changeover…

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Back in the ddDR

They don’t know how lucky they are.. Lucky because whilst many parts of the world have stopped all but essential travel, DR is open and they made the mistake of telling the Russians. And the French but by far the biggest contingent at the Hilton La Romana are Dominicans who…

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DR “con” Dianna

Dianna arrived on Thursday the 29th on an American Airlines flight from Miami. Just 2 1/2 hours compared with a four hour drive from the house to the airport. I went to pick her up with a taxi driver called Max, who had the best English of all the locals…

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