Page 4 of alex waring Travel Blog Posts

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London » Hammersmith April 21st 2011

Dear All Greetings from London! Just arrived back in Hammersmith after what has become a really excellent journey, through an intriguing and beautiful part of the world, and certainly at a significant time in its political situation. Quite a relief to be back now to be honest, firstly as I’m now writing from the comforts of my front room, with a cold beer waiting for me in the fridge and a hot bath to be run very shortly upstairs, but mainly as things do seem to be hotting up a bit now in Syria. While my time in the country saw numerous instances of trouble brewing below the surface, and at times erupting, I do have the feeling that now the President has lifted the country’s State of Emergency, there may be rockier roads ahead. While ... read more
Me, the Valley of the Tombs
View over Damascus
The Russians: Andrey and Janna

Middle East » Syria » East » Palmyra April 18th 2011

Dear All Greetings from the Syrian Desert! Currently in the town of Palmyra, Syria’s star tourist attraction, and a rather touristy little town it is – more reminiscent of Thailand’s backpacker hotspots, with pancake houses and touts by the bucketload – seems a bit strange for Syria, but actually rather welcome to be back on the tourist track again particularly at this time. Last I wrote, I was just about to leave beautiful Aleppo, and a not-so-beautiful hotel room, taking a 4 hour bus trip eastwards towards the capital of the Syrian desert, Deir es-Zur. A journey of stark contrasts – starting off leaving civilization and verdant hills, and travelling through such a barren and inhospitable-looking landscape which is the Syrian desert. I felt thirsty just looking out of the bus window, from the comfort of ... read more
Sun through the Sandstorm
Journey in the Desert
Bridge over the Euphrates River

Middle East » Syria » North » Aleppo April 14th 2011

Dear All Greetings from Aleppo, Syria’s second largest city at 2 million people, situated in the north of the country. And what a beautiful city it is, with some great sights and as usual very friendly people. Still having a great time travelling in this fascinating region of the world, and have spent the last days travelling through the Syrian heartland from Tartus on the coast, through Homs and Hama in the centre, to here, Aleppo, my current stop before I head out east into the desert. Will try to upload some photos of the past few days, having been to some amazing places, though this internet café is a tad on the slow side – we’ll see how it goes… Last I wrote I believe I was about to leave Tartus, which was good timing ... read more
Noria and Mosque
Beehive Houses

Middle East » Syria » West » Tartus April 10th 2011

Dear All Wow – I'm having such an amazing time, and I have done so much since I last wrote that I really don't know where to start, or whether I'll be able to get it all down in one go without writing reams! I'll try. Greetings from Tartus, Syria's second port city to the south of Lattakia – the latter being a place which is certainly not on my itinerary given the current state of affairs there. Speaking of which, and I guess a good place to start this blog: despite what's being reported in the news from this part of the world at the moment, it feels remarkably safe and peaceful. This might be because I'm certainly sticking to places which are not making headlines, but also perhaps because the media does tend to ... read more
Funky Photo
Sunset over the Mediterranean

Middle East » Lebanon » Beirut April 6th 2011

Dear All Greetings from Beirut! I’m now in Lebanon, my 62nd country after having already ticked off my 61st a couple of days ago when landing in Damascus, Syria – I guess I can go home now (!). Only joking, I still have another 15 days of amazing travel left in this region and am looking forward to it very much, if it’ll be anything like these last 3 days which have been just great! Touched down in Damascus on Sunday evening, and was met at the airport by a pre-booked taxi taking me to the hotel I booked in the centre of town. A very strange thing it is indeed, having experienced it before in both Caracas and Nairobi, arriving in a new city, new country, late in the evening and having to go straight ... read more
A Storm is Coming...
Spices For Sale
The Temple of Bacchus

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London » Hammersmith April 2nd 2011

Dear All Another school holiday is here, and the time has come for me to pack my bags and take to the road once more. This time to a bit of a political hotspot at the moment, and I leave this journey completely in God's hands. Syria and Lebanon. What a choice at the moment! But the truth is I booked my return flight to Damascus when Syria seemed to be the most stable of the Arabic countries during this current time of political upheaval in the region. Indeed, my original plan was to fly into Beirut, but I changed it to Damascus as at the time Lebanon was looking a bit dodgy, with talk of a potential civil war as the President appointed a Hezbollah-backed Prime Minister in January 2011, amidst much controversy. But it ... read more
The LP's
All Packed Up and Ready To Go

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London » Hammersmith January 5th 2011

Dear All Greetings from London! I have made it back here safely after what has been an excellent and amazing trip, in a truly beautiful and hospitable country. Tunisia is just such a great destination to visit, and I can't recommend it enough - its combination of beautiful places, relatively easy transport and friendly and welcoming people just make it great for a first-time traveller venturing outside the West, and if it's not been made obvious so far, it was just great for me too! Writing this one safely from the confines of my front room in Hammersmith, listening to my own music from my own CD player, having had a stinkingly hot bath this morning as well as bacon and eggs (my favourite!) for breakfast. My washing machine is going at full blast, with four ... read more
Bulla Regia
Ain Draham

Africa » Tunisia » Le Kef January 1st 2011

Hey Guys! New Year greetings from the North of Tunisia! I have left the desert after an incredible week of stunning landscapes, sand dunes, camels and abandoned villages. What an amazing place, and Tunisia sure packs a lot into its comparatively tiny amount of desert – imagine how much there is to see in its larger neighbours of Libya, Algeria and beyond (but do rest assured, am not planning any trips to these in the near future…!). Still, am seriously contemplating taking up Arabic classes on my return to London, having just about got to grips with the written script, so hopefully will be able to delve into more Arabic countries in the near future. Am writing this one from a little-visited, but absolutely fascinating and very welcoming city called El Kef, in the north-western corner ... read more
Chebika Oasis
Ong Jemal
Kasbah, El Kef

Africa » Tunisia » Douz December 28th 2010

Dear All Greetings from the Sahara Desert! This is truly an amazing place to be writing from, and despite only being around 3 hours’ flight from the UK, this is my first visit to the place and I must say I’m just so impressed, having a great time. I’m currently writing from the Southern Tunisian oasis town of Douz, after having spent the last few days traveling from oasis to oasis across the south from Jerba, and will tell more of this adventure here. First off, Christmas on Jerba island! Decided to spend Christmas Eve in a bit of luxury, so caught a taxi from my 12 pound a night hotel in the central market town of Houmt Souq on the island, towards the Zone Touristique around 15km away, situated on an extremely fine strip of ... read more
The campfire
The Beach, Jerba

Africa » Tunisia » Djerba December 23rd 2010

Hey guys ! Greetings from the south of Tunisia, and indeed a great journey so far. Am currently writing this edition of my travel blog from ‘The Land of the Lotus Eaters’, Jerba – the island in Homer’s Odyssey from where the great voyager Ulysses' men did not want to leave after tasting the delicious fruit of the locals : the ‘lotus’ – indeed they forgot the route back home to Greece, until I believe it was slapped out of them. Unfortunately have been unable to find this mythical forbidden fruit in any of the souqs or covered markets, despite trying, but still seems like a nice place to hang around. Not sure if I’ll be unable to leave to my next destination on Sunday, but we’ll see what this island has to offer. But yeah, ... read more
El Jem Colosseum
Hobbit hole by night, Matmata

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