Author: Darren

Auckland Lantern Festival
New Zealand

Auckland Lantern Festival

The Chinese community comes out in force to support the Auckland Lantern Festival. This is the first year it’s been held in Auckland Domain and it made a huge difference from Albert Park, the venue in previous years. At Albert Park it was a seething throng of people and the […]

Mt Karioi and Te Toto Gorge, Raglan
New Zealand

Mt Karioi and Te Toto Gorge, Raglan

Our first significant battle against gravity since our Matamataharakeke walk at Waikawau Bay was Mt Karioi, a 2.4-million-year-old volcano 8km south of the seaside town of Raglan in the Waikato. I’ve climbed it before, years ago, but from the non-scenic side and not in 27-degree heat. The drive from Raglan […]

Pachacamac, Lima – dust and deities
Peru

Pachacamac, Lima – dust and deities

Lima wasn’t one of my favourite cities. The most exciting thing about it was the insane taxi ride from the airport to the bed and breakfast which was even more underpant-stripingly scary than the Formula Rosso rollercoaster in UAE and some of the food I ate in Chile. Some of […]

Santiago, Chile – street art
Chile

Santiago, Chile – street art

Santiago has a lot of street art and a lot of Jesus. Everywhere you look there’s either graffiti or a Christian statue. Chilean street art From simple tagging to full-blown murals, Santiago’s colourful walls are mesmerising. There are paintings everywhere of a stupendously high quality, and even if they’re not […]

Cuba’s cars
Cuba

Cuba’s cars

Cuba’s cars come in four main eras: the 1930s (often European like Citroen), the 1950s (mostly American), the 1970s (mostly Russian) and new cars (mostly Chinese, but a few Korean and Euro). It’s an interesting mix but is still predominantly innumerable Chevrolets and Ladas in various states of decay. Spotting the […]

Chelsea Sugar Factory to Kendall Bay walk, Auckland
New Zealand

Chelsea Sugar Factory to Kendall Bay walk, Auckland

A fine three-hour walk is to take the track from the Chelsea Sugar Factory on Colonial Road, Auckland through the forest to Kendall Bay (which has quite a nice beach), then return and take the loop through the Chelsea Sugar Heritage Estate which takes in brilliant views across to Auckland […]

Driving holidays in New South Wales: the rules
Australia

Driving holidays in New South Wales: the rules

If you’re planning a road trip in New South Wales there are a huge number of awesome sights to see driving from the beautiful beaches north of Sydney to the lush Blue Mountains and onto the arid interior. You can rent a car or campervan super easy in New South […]

Jökulsárlón, Iceland – a lake of ice islands
Iceland

Jökulsárlón, Iceland – a lake of ice islands

We had been advised by our guidebook that nothing can prepare you for driving around the corner and first seeing Jökulsárlón’s milky blue lake filled with the calved offspring of the Breiðamerkurjökull glacier. Right on the Ring Road, it’s easy to get to and thus was comparatively busy with tourists despite us getting […]