Dave & Jenni Olivier


Dave & Jenni Olivier

Intrepid Travelers on a mature OE. Hope the friends, kids and students enjoy the travel with us.

Asia » Singapore » Orchard Road September 18th 2011

Arrived in Singapore after a very long flight from Rome. We got no sleep in the 12 hour flight, but watched plenty of movies. Picked up from the airport at 6am by Tim and Shona and brought back to Woodlands House, correction Woodlands Mansion! What a beautiful home build back in the 30's with high ceilings and large rooms in 30 degree heat and high humidity! Jen promptly fell asleep on the bed and the rest of the cast got on with the show. Sleeping beauty! We then went to the Aussie club to watch the Wallabies play Ireland, heh, heh, heh!!! Oh the joy! Must not gloat. Cannot help myself! We then went out to dinner at a local Thai restuarant to rejoice heh!, heh! Sunday, slept in late and awoke to a cooked breakfast. ... read more
Marina Sands Hotel
Agony of bad timing
New Skyline.

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome September 16th 2011

Rome Day 3: Got up late and then posted the excess baggage back home!!! We went off to the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore. Another magnificent church with a very long history. Walk around the city and had a relaxing day. Lots of great food! Rome Day 4: Got up early to do a walking tour of ancient Rome starting at the Coloseum, the Forum, the trevvi Fountain, Pantheon and Piazza Navona. Amazing to think that we were walking on pathways and roads that were walked on by the ancient Romans over two thousand years ago. We got a huge kick out of walking these same roads. Shortly after leaving the square where we visited the Pantheon, the riot police and protestors clashed with each other over the Italian Austerity measures. We were glad they chose ... read more
Real History
One of the ancient roads
The Scooters

Europe » Italy » Lazio » Rome September 16th 2011

Day 1.We left beautiful Florence and headed for Rome, a trip of 1hour 45 minutes. First thing that strikes you is the huge number of apartment blocks and it has made me realise how luckly we are that many of us own our own homes as this is the exception to the rule in Toronto, Amersterdam, Germany, Strassborg & Italy. We stayed in a B&B in Rome in a good central location, but must admit that after our 4 star hotel in Florence, the B&B was quite a come down. That afternoon we mastered the metro and had a walk around the Vatican city.Wow, what an awesome city Rome is and hard to describe the splendour unless you have been there yourself. It was extremely hot and we got into a pattern of getting up early ... read more
New sculpture at Vatican
Inside St Peter's
Inside St Peter's

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence September 11th 2011

Day 4 was partially a rest day for Jenni's legs as the heat has not been kind to her. She spent half the day lying on the bed to try & reduce the swelling and then begged to go out in the afternoon as she was bored. We walked over the famous Ponte Veccio bridge, the oldest in Florence.It is now the home of numerous jewellery stores and no, we did not buy anything. On our walk we were lucky to witness a re-enactment of a procession of people wearing medieval costumes, waving banners and carrying weapons of the time, but unluckily we did not take the camera. We returned for a late dinner and caught up with the world cup rugby website. We do miss being able to keep up with world news as all ... read more
Glorious Florence
Ponte Vecchio
The Duomo

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence September 9th 2011

We booked a bus tour to Siena, San Gimignano and Pisa. What a fantastic day that included lunch on an Chianti organic wine farm, where we had a traditional tuscan lunch with plenty of wine tasting! Jen excluded from the wine tasting ofcourse! I had her share! Siena was wonderful and we had a great guide who told us all about the politics of the 17 sections of the city each with their own animal symbol. What a character she was and this is where the famous 600 year old Palio horse race takes place in the square. What passion this race brings to the fore in the city. We also visited the Siena Cathedral that once again was mind blowing. The frescoes and the floor of the cathedral were fantastic and the amount of gold ... read more
Siena Cathedral
Inside Siena Cathedral

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence September 8th 2011

So this is first class travel by train. What a difference it was to travel in the correct type of train on the way to Florence. Drinks and food included it was great. Short two hour journey made quicker by the style of elegance and helpful staff. Wonderful to arrive in Florence and especially to arrive at our magnificent Hotel Mulino di Firenze on the outskirts of Florence. It was paradise for us after the weeks on the road and a chance to take a break if we wanted to. Fantastic room and swimming pool with the hotel adjacent to the river. It use to be a watermill, but has now been converted into a 4 star hotel with all the bells and whistles. Had a wonderful dinner and watched our first Tuscan sunset out on ... read more
The terrace
Santa Croce Church
Michelangelo's tomb

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice September 6th 2011

Day 2 started with us trying to post some books and gifts back to NZ. Off we went to the post office and took a number to be served. Jen spotted another counter and got the courier boxes we needed. Then back to the hotel to pack the boxes and return to the post office again. We collected the obligatory number from the machine and waited in the queue for about 40mins. Finally got to the counter when our number came up only to be told their courier weighing machines was out of order and will only be available in two days time! It was at this point we decided additional luggage would be the next item on the shopping list! Back to the hotel. Off we went to explore the city. We walked through the ... read more
on the Water
Magnificent St Mark's

Europe » Switzerland » North-West » Basel September 3rd 2011

Our final night of the cruise was spent at a dinner hosted by the Captain and crew involving a 5 course dinner. I have not eaten a 5 course meal for many years and we had a wonderful time. We said our farewells to friends and crew and had a early night as we had a 5am start the following morning with a 2 hour bus drive to Basel to be in time for our excursion. Once again we had a private tour with a wonderful guide in an amazing city with rich history, beautiful old homes surrounded by narrow lanes & incredible views. Basel is a mixture of French and German and we have been amazed by the fact that most people in Europe speak 2 languages fluently, if not 3. In fact today a ... read more
San Marco
The Rialto Bridge

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Worms September 1st 2011

Disembarked at Worms and took the bus tour to Heildelberg where we had our personal English guide to the Heidleberg castle and town. It was great to walk through the old part of the town and we could almost hear the old students songs going through our heads! This was a place that we want to return to and spend a few days discovering the rest of this fantastic old city on the river. Of course I had to have the obligatory beer in the university town. Magnificent old churches with all the gold leaf that are now protestant churches. It was on the return to the boat that we learnt that we had a faulty bow thruster, they let Jen drive, and we would not be able to go all the way to Basel by ... read more
The Bridge

Europe » Germany » Rhineland-Palatinate » Cochem August 31st 2011

The scenery along this part of the Rhine and the Mosel river were magnificent and covered in vineyards on both sides. Most of the wines on board came from the Mosel region and were excellent. We finally started to see the sunshine on Wednesday and got a little bit of a tan as we had largely been hit with thunderstorms and rain. Having three meals a day served to you, each time with a minimum of three courses and most times four, tends to reek havoc on the waistline! Not much room to exercise on the boat but we did quite a bit of walking whenever we got off the boat. In both Cochem and Rudesheim we chose to do our own thing in both of these cities and had a great time exploring with Klause ... read more
Arriving in Cochem
Cableway adventure

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