Page 3 of Hippobear Travel Blog Posts

South America » Ecuador » North » Quito October 31st 2009

We arrived in Quito on 15th October, we were met at the airport by Dario a one armed man with a taxi, well not really one armed, just one was in plaster. We were driven to our homestay which was in the centre of the Mariscal Sucre in Quito, we were in a sixth floor aprtment with a family consisting of Mother, Father and adult son of about 30ish. Also staying there was a girl from Prague by the name of Martina. This was not what i had envisaged when told we would be staying with a local Ecuadorian family, but never mind, the language school assured us it was safer than staying in the hostels. The first day we were there we had free, so we spent the day exploring the area and getting our ... read more
Basilica towers
Quito and the Penecillio
Pigeons flying away from the crowds

South America October 16th 2009

Like many other youngsters I wanted to go on a big trip after serving in the IDF for three years, but for some reason at the point of decision I changed my mind and instead commenced a five-year architecture course. It was followed by another eight years of studying and working in the UK until the recent recession opened a window that brought a new travel spirit to my comfortable life I had in the beautiful city of Bath. Thus, I decided it would be the right time for me to pursue the 'Grand Trip' now, when I am a bit more mature, with a little bit more money, and without limit of time as I have finished my 'duties' and now the time is for me. Together with my lovely Liz, we chose South America ... read more
New Year

Middle East » Israel » South District » Eilat September 10th 2009

Continuing my tour around Israel, to say good bye to friends and to see some last sights has been fun, good to see people, good to find more treasures in this small but historically packed country. The journey has taken me back to the South, firstly to Shakharut (a village on my desert trek) where I went to stay with Iran and his girlfriend overnight in their desert house. It was lovely to be in the desert again, without the light and noise pollution from the town. The stars were so bright and the air so clear and although it is still very hot down south during the day, by night the temperatures have started to cool so there was a lovely evening breeze. It was so quiet and peaceful to stay, and to be woken ... read more
Dolphin in Eilat
Masada - The communal baths
Masada - The northern palace

Middle East » Israel September 10th 2009

It seems impossible that I have been away and on my adventures for nearly seven months. The time has flown by. Sometimes I think I have not done very much since I have been here. Then I look through all the ‘Travel Notes’ that some of you have been brave enough to read through, and I realise I have done so much, learn a lot and had the privilege of meeting some really inspiring people, been welcomed into their lives and homes and had a real look into how people live here in Israel. The last couple of weeks I have been out on trips to places of interest, been to Hamat Gadder in the north to the hot spring baths, and my, were they hot, made me feel quite dizzy when I got out. The ... read more

Middle East » Israel » Jerusalem District August 22nd 2009

Once again we were off on another adventure to volunteer again at a kibbutz by the name of Netiv HaLamed-Heh, this was set in the hills about half an hour’s drive from Jerusalem. The group we were to help were a group of four sisters and their husbands (and numerous children). Three of the couples lived in the kibbutz, and all of the sisters in some way were connected to dance. They had been running a dance group called Vertigo and school for seventeen years, based in Jerusalem, with a touring group which they took to the USA yearly as well as putting on shows in various other countries. The kibbutz had at one time been a big chicken/egg producer and just below the village itself there were a group of about 8 huge steel framed ... read more
Backets for the mix
Liz is making a tile

Middle East » Israel » Jerusalem District » Jerusalem August 10th 2009

We set off again in the direction of Jerusalem. Through Helpx we had been in contact via email with a group of people who had formed their own little community and were running it in an Eco friendly way and were in need of help. We bussed to Jerusalem and then caught another bus out to the outskirts of the city, a really sweet little village called Ein Karem. We then had to walk about a kilometre to the place we were to be helping. It was a piece of land that was terraced and the group of people living there had set up Yurts, Tepee’s, a huge ex-army tent and built a mud and straw house. They had also built a composting toilet and a really neat shower. When we arrived everyone there was frantically ... read more
Mama Terrasa
Neat shower
Mama Terrasa

Middle East » Israel » North District August 9th 2009

After resting for a few days we set off again in the direction North of the country to a place called Zivon. Through Lotan, we had been in contact via email and phone with a group of people who were part of a Kibbutz that were fairly new and small (24 families) but were in the process of turning the village into an Eco village, using grey water systems, growing vegetables, only buying from the locality, being aware of their carbon footprint, they were building using mud and wood Chipping’s from the locality. They were also in the process of setting up a learning centre to teach Perma-Culture. We took the train from Haifa north to Akko, then we took a bus on to Zivon, however, when we got to the station the bus had gone. ... read more
Mud wall is nearly ready
Making the mix

Middle East July 9th 2009

After returning from the Desert and the Mud Hut building experience we returned to Haifa to house and dog sit for friends. This was a well-needed rest period and I didn’t do much other than walk the dog, read and run. It was good to get back into a running routine, which is so hard to keep up when you are travelling, especially when you are doing hard physical work and with the heat here. It was nice to have the company of a dog again and the ten days passed in a flash. Soon after this we went to Jerusalem for a few day. I wanted to venture more into the city and see it with people in, as my first and only experience was on the day we arrived in Israel, when we took ... read more
The market
Meeting with an artist
City of all religions

Middle East » Israel » South District June 22nd 2009

For some reason, unbeknown to me, we thought it may be a good idea to find out a bit more about building from mud. I think we are thinking ahead for when we travel (I hope) to South America, we thought it may be a skill that would come in handy. Well, suffice to say we were told by a friend in Haifa about this Kibbutz in the middle of the desert who are an ‘Eco’ friendly centre for learning and have build most of their kibbutz using mud and straw. As luck would have it they were running their very last course before the summer shut down (it get up to 40+ degrees there in the summer so it is too hot to run the courses or do anything much). There was a place available, ... read more

Middle East » Jordan » South » Wadi Rum June 17th 2009

Well, just to update you on what I have been up to recently, as you can see by the title, I had a quick trip into Jordan. This involved a 5-6 hour journey from Haifa down to Eilat in the south of the country so that I was able to enter Jordan via Aqaba. The journey south was fairly uneventful, but different to do it by car after doing it a couple of times by bus. We drove from Haifa to Tel Aviv, then to Beer Sheeva and down to Timna (where we did the desert hike from) and stayed overnight in a kibbutz that had lovely little cottages to rent on a B&B basis. After having a quick cup of tea and a freshen up we headed into Eilat……what a shock….all lights, noise, crowds and ... read more
The mashroom
The food
The bird

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