Page 5 of Debra and Dana Travel Blog Posts

Africa » Namibia » Sossusvlei January 4th 2016

The first stop on our self drive adventure is Kulala Desert Lodge in Sossusvlei (vlei means pan or dry river bed). The Lodge is situated near the highest sand dunes in the world that look like a mountain range from a distance. The changing sun also creates a different colour gradations but their primary colour is red. Nestled among the dunes are a number of dried up river beds, the largest being Sossusvlei which contains a collection of dead trees that are still standing. Of course the lack of moisture prevents them from rotting so they are left black and lifeless. There are 3 main dunes in which you can climb, Dune 45, Big Daddy Dune and Big Momma Dune. Big Daddy is the tallest at 300 m and of course it's the one we choose ... read more
Going my way?
Sesriem Canyon
Namib Desert

Africa » Namibia » Windhoek January 2nd 2016

We arrived in Cape Town on December 30th as planned, rented a car to drive out to Highcliffe House, dropped off some of our luggage and had lunch with Jane and Jim. Then off to a late afternoon flight to Windhoek, the Capital of Namibia. Windhoek is a fairly impressive city (at least from what we saw) quite well developed and with a population of 300,000 would be comparable to a Canadian city such as Halifax in infrastructure and development. We stayed at the Olive Grove quest house and spent New Years eve there. It was a very quiet celebration but we did manage to stay up until Midnight(5 PM Eastern Time), but we're in bed at 12:02 am!! We picked up our 4X4 and headed out for our "self drive" tour on January 1st. The ... read more

Africa » Namibia » Windhoek December 29th 2015

On Monday, December 28, 2015, we left Toronto Pearson Airport, in the first snow storm of the season after a very green Christmas! We enjoyed the Holidays with family and friends, then de-decorated, cleaned the house, distributed all the leftover food to our niece Victoria and departed on a long journey, first to Nambia, then to South Africa. This is being written on a Luftanza flight somewhere over Africa on our way to Cape Town. We've already flown 7 hours from Toronto to Munich, had a 9 hour layover in Munich, where we rented a day room at the Shearton for a quick nap and shower, then back to the Aiport for a 11.5 hour non stop flight to Cape Town. This will become quite a travel "workout" as we have a 10 hour layover in ... read more

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson March 20th 2015

Christine, one of Debra's long time friends from grade school, came to visit from Toronto along with her sister Michelle who lives in Vancouver. Both are school teachers so they had some time off during March break. This gave us an opportunity to explore some things that we had yet to experience. Of course there were a few days enjoyed just hanging around the pool, and we did tour around downtown Tucson which included a trip to El Charro's in "old Town" for some local Margueritas. We even got a tour of a private house that was 130 years old! Michelle, being very outgoing struck up a conversation with Joe the owner who exemplified Tucson's friendliness by inviting us in. They were just beginning to have dinner ame watch the local Wildcats basketball on TV. The ... read more
Enjoying Happy hour with Christine and Michelle
At Mt. Lemmon with the Girls
Lavender Pit

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson March 14th 2015

After spending an enjoyable 10 days in Florida golfing with some guys mainly from New Brunswick, Dana returned to Tucson where the weather was quite a bit warmer than the Orlando area. Debra begun some golf lessons which will help advance her play. She's making good improvements with her game, however, as most golfers realize, it's a life time of work in progress. We also ventured out on another long hike in the Saguaro National Park West. The Hugh Norris trail is a 9.8 mile return hike and meanders along numerous ridges to Wasson's peak, which is the highest point in the Tucson mountain range. The trail was well marked and quite rigorous at times. The total elevation is about 2,000 ft from the trail head, so needless to say, we had enough when we completed ... read more
Our Friends at Mount Lemmon
Hops at the Desert Museum
Early Spring Arizona

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson March 2nd 2015

Dana left on February 18th to join his brother and others for 10 days of golf in Orlando. My brother's girl friend Linda came in on the same day. It was nice to have company while Dana was away. Linda and I spent a couple of days at the Grand Canyon which was a "gasping" experience for Linda who had never been there before. On arrival, we enjoyed a fabulous sunset and relaxed for the evening . The following day we spent some time hiking around the south rim and part way down the Angel trail. The weather was comfortable unlike the North rim which is cold and closed to the Public this time of year. Next stop was Sedona with some awesome views of the "Red Rocks" and the Chapel of the Holy Cross . ... read more
Devils Bridge Sedona
Cathedral Rock Sedona
Sabino Canyon

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson February 13th 2015

Our friends ( and former neighbours) Sheila and Alvin arrived on February 7th for a visit. From all appearances, they seemed quite happy to be out of winter in Mississauga. It was great to have them to tour around and we made the most of their time with us. Sunday we're off to Nogales Mexico which is a twin town to Nogales Arizona. They are similar in name only! It's amazing how 2 communities with the same historical and cultural background can be so different. We parked on the Arizona side and walked into Mexico with absolutely no border check. On the way back into USA, it was quite a different story and it took about 1 hour to clear customs back into USA. Alvin sharpened his skills by negotiating and excellent price on some very ... read more
Old Tucson
Along the Apache Trail
Sabino Canyon

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson February 6th 2015

We finish off our second week in Tucson with a couple days of rain. It was quite unusual to have so much rain in the desert. Mt Lemon which is the highest mountain bordering Tucson received over 5 inches of rain. Of course there is always a danger of flash floods, which thank goodness didn't happen. The locals now claim it will be fabulous spring with so much rain in the ground. As a side note, the Sequora cactus can hold enough water for a year, so they should be could until 2016. After a couple games of golf and a regular routine of exercise, shopping etc, we did visit the Tucson Museum of Art. This was an interesting eclectic collection of historical and contemporary paintings and sculptures. Of course there was a cowboy section but ... read more
Pablo Picasso
Painting by Pablo Picasso
Native American in Tucson Museum

North America » United States » Arizona » Tucson January 19th 2015

We have now settled into our house in Arizona. I forgot to mention in the last Blog the price of gas on the way here averaged about $2.00/US gallon or about $.50/litre USD. When we left Niagara the price was about $.98/litre CDN. Gas pricing will help a little to off set the much higher exchange rate we're paying. Our house is okay although we're a little disappointed that the patio backs onto a noisy road. This is more than made up for by the golf course, fitness facility and olympic size pool that is part of the Starr Pass Marriott resort. The golf course is designed by Arnold Palmer and as you can see from the pictures, it's a desert style. Our rate, as vacation renters is $45.00 which is great value for this premium ... read more
Starr Pass GC
Downtown Tucson
Downtown Tucson

North America » United States » Tennessee » Nashville January 13th 2015

Well we're off to Arizona for the Winter of 2015. Left home early on January 8th and drove through -17 degrees Celcius temperatures and snow packed roads until we reached Kentucky. Arrived in Nashville 12 1/2 hours later. Nashville, the home to Country Music, is a very interesting city. Of course we experienced quite a few "Honky Tonks" where music talent is in abundance. Visited the recently opened Johnny Cash museum and of course the Country Music Hall of Fame. Both are worth the time and money. And as a climax, on Saturday night, went to the Grand Ole Opry which is such an experience if your a country music fan. Even Debra enjoyed it! The show is held in the winter at the original Ryman Auditorium which made the performances even more memorable. A Canadian ... read more
The "new" Grand Ole Oprey
Bourban Street Blues on Printers Alley
Honkey Tonk Bar in Nashville

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