Trekking pole tripod – camera mount

Travel with a tripod? Planning for a long trek on foot, it is important to pack and travel as light as possible. But does that mean you have to compromise on recording the experience? I pondered that when considering alternatives to a camera tripod. For the Camino de Santiago de Compostela …

Camino training

Our preparations have begun in earnest for our stroll across northern Spain later in the year. When I say stroll, 800km is probably a bit more than a stroll and so a bit of training is called for. Living in Canberra’s south-west I have easy access to the Weston Ponds …

Camino de Santiago de Compstella

I must admit I’m just a bit excited. I’ve had some time out from this blog and I’ve been thinking about doing a very different kind of travel – something to challenge me and at the same time giving me space to reflect. Mindful travel requires time to process the experience. …

Canberra – Nara Candle Festival

Australia’s Capital, Canberra, hosts an annual festival of Japanese culture at the Nara Park on the lake foreshore. Canberra has ‘twin’ status with Nara city in Japan (near Kyoto Prefecture) and the Nara Candle Festival celebrates this link. In addition to the amazing cuisine, there were demonstrations of traditional Japanese …

Roman baths (Thermae) in Arles

The extensive remains of the  Roman Baths (thermae) in Arles in the south of France – built during the 4th Century AD under Emperor Constantine – give an insight into how the Romanised Gauls lived – taking on many aspects of Roman culture. Regular bathing was was practiced across all classes. …

Packing list for the mind

Go to any travel site and you’ll see a dozen packing lists for your trip – whether for short or long travel, what tech equipment to take, which shoes and hats to take and so on – but there is one list that seems to be missing. And it is …

French carousels – colourful past and present

One of the great delights, whether in the Tuilleries garden in Paris or at the centre of many French towns, are the myriad colourful carousels. They are loved by children worldwide and form a component of almost every amusement park. Once they were the main attraction, but time and technology …

Accumulate experiences, not things

Recent scientific research on what makes us happy shows that experiences, however one-off or short-lived, are more effective at sustaining our happiness than buying a longer lasting thing. This seems counter-intuitive, but according to Dr Thomas Gilovich, a psychology professor at Cornell University: “We buy things to make us happy, and …

Van Gogh’s bridge to Japan

Why are bridges so fascinating? Bridges hold a special place in every culture. They are a means to cross  from one place to another; over a hazard, a dangerous river or chasm. So bridges are both a connection and a marker for a division. When you step off the land …