Sydney

Col and Lyn

Sydney

We are from Sydney, Australia. We have been keen bloggers since 2005 on a trip to the USA and Canada. Since then we have posted from Europe, Asia and elsewhere to share our travels with family and friends.



Asia » Japan » Kyoto » Amanohashidate April 16th 2018

After Nagasaki we entered uncharted territory as we travelled across Northern Kyushu. Col, Hide and I had never been ther but luckily for us Daisuke had. Because a cyclone last year took out a major bridge along the train route to Hita we had a coach take us the last couple of hours. That turned into an advantage as we detoured into the mounains to visit the tiny pottery town of Onta. Only 11 families live there and they all create Ontayaki pottery using age old methods. The local clay is crushed by a large water driven hammer before being soaked into slurry. The kneaded and wedged clay is thrown using a foot wheel to make everyday wares with simple clay and glaze finishes. The pots are dried outside on batterns and fired in a traditional ... read more
Onta potter hard at work
Early morning mist at Hita
Hita Floats

Asia » Japan » Nagasaki » Nagasaki April 7th 2018

Spring blossoms can be mercurial..blink and you might miss them. In 2015 we arrived in Tokyo on April 1 with Probus friends on the peak cherry blossom day when you couldn't see the sky in Ueno Park for blossoms. This year we arrived on the same date but were 10 days too late for the blossoms. Given the Zen view that perfection is transitory and that once past their peak blossoms will gently disappear, we should have accepted our lot. However, that first afternoon, after a short flight to Osaka and a coach to Shigasan Onsen in the mountains near Oji we saw blossoms at their best in a cooler climate. They hung outside every room at the onsen and were right through the mountains and the valley. Two nights were not nearly enough to take ... read more
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NARA

Asia » Japan » Nara » Nara March 30th 2018

The bus is booked, the itinerary complete and the bags are almost packed. Watch out for our updates from this spring trip that will take us to Tokyo, Nara, Kyoto, Himeji, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Hita, Kunisaki Peninsula, Matsue, Amanohashidate, Kanazawa, Toyama and Tokyo again before we fly home. Who knows we may even come up with some Haiku poetry again- not to mention spectacular examples of origami that Hide-san will teach us!... read more

Europe » Denmark » Region Hovedstaden » Copenhagen August 10th 2016

Hi everyone Creating the blog on a tablet has not been as easy as on a computer and this time I am having trouble viewing the photos when im on one particular browser. If you can't see any photos when you open it as usual then try copying and pasting the address into another browser and see if they show up. 43 or so images do exist - just a matter of finding them.... read more

Europe » Denmark » Region Hovedstaden » Copenhagen August 9th 2016

NORWAY - the coastline from Bergen to Kirkenes was absorbing and everchanging. From the majestic, towering cliffs and fiords to the rolling hills and small towns in the north and the many islands and inlets passed each day- the scenery was unforgetable. The Hurtigruten experience worked so well for us-the weather was fine, seas calm and the 24 hour day gave us dramatic skies and total confusion as to the time. SWEDEN AND THE INLANDSBANAN- After leaving the Polarlys at Harstad, we crossed over the mountains via the Arctic Railway on the major iron ore transpot line and joined Inslandbanan - a single carriage tourist train ambling through the countryside of Swedish Lapland! What a change of pace and scenery. Water was everywhere as it ran from the mountains across Sweden to the Baltic. Rivers fed ... read more
Lake reflections
Flam
First glimpse of snow

Asia » Japan » Hokkaido » Hakodate July 13th 2016

Unlike Spring in Japan with its pink and white profusion above your head or the red and russet leaves of autumn underfoot, the summer we experienced in a few days in Hokaido and northern Honshu was marked by every shade of green from lemon lime through to deep olive and blue/green as far as the eye could see. It was lush and had a tropical feel but luckily being in the north there wasn't the humidity we felt in our brief time in Tokyo and Narita. The rice fields and other crops were well advanced and the fields filled the valley areas. Where the mountains and valleys met the creepers and thick growth looked as if they could take over. Our idea was to break the long flight from Sydney to Helsinki and have a week ... read more
How green is that?
Purple vision
Flower fields

Oceania » Australia July 1st 2016

Not long until we are back in Japan. This time we will fly into Sapporo in the northern island of Hokkaido as neither of us have seen this more rural area of the country. We will finish our time in Japan, before flying to Helsinki, at a wonderful onsen we visited in 2007 on our Isabella Bird adventure. I expect to relax in hot tubs at Naruko Onsen... read more

Asia » Japan » Tokyo April 14th 2015

Mountain mists gently Roll over the thatched rooves Shirakawago We weren't expecting snow this trip..neither were we expecting so much rain. The snow and mist at Shirakawago created an eerily beautiful landscape. We had lunch in a small inn sitting on the floor. The owner farmed his own salmon and sweet fish and grew the rice and vegetables and as we ate as we looked out to his farm, his house and the storehouse. No English was spoken but we communicated well with this lovely old man and his wife. Grey,Mist, rain and ice Lone heritage thatched house Welcoming and warm The last week of the Probus trip continued to delight the senses with a variety of experiences. Whilst some people battled colds and others aching limbs we found that a soak in a hot onsen, ... read more
Our lunch stop
Our host
How he cooked his fish

Asia » Japan » Gifu » Takayama April 13th 2015

The spring trip is almost over and it has been full of fun, adventure and laughter as we have explored both well known and little known parts of Honshu. Much of our trip has been in rain- mostly light but some very heavy but nothing seemed to dampen spirits as our troop took everything in their stride. In their own words in (prose or Haiku poetry of 17 syllables) are some samples views: The cherry blossoms. Burst into flower today. Waking our senses. Shinjuku Gyoen National Park Tokyo- A georgeous display of cherry blossoms, a delight o see the japanese people celebrating th ebeauty by painting the scenery, enjoying meeting,friends and family and picnicing under the blossom trees. The lovely families with young children, the peace and tranquillity of the gardens so neat and pristine. Young, ... read more
Boating and blossoms
blossoms at their peak
Col-san

Oceania » Australia March 24th 2015

On Tuesday 31st March 2015 28 of us from Breakfast Point Probus Club will fly to Tokyo just in time to see the cherry blossoms at their peak - we hope! We will keep you posted on our adventures during the 18 day circular trip- when we will head from Tokyo to Fuji Lakes, then Himeji's 'White Castle', then down opast Osaka to Tanabe and across the Kumano Kodo Pilgrim Walk (by bus in the main) to Katsuura on the other coast of the Mie Peninsula. After a couple of days there we will head to Nagoya and by a small train to the beautiful old town of Gujo Hachiman before we venture up to Shirakawago and to a highlight of our trip - the Takayama Festival on the 14/15th April. On the way back to ... read more
Where we are coming from...
Gum Blossoms at BP
Blossoms at Breakfast Point last spring




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