Renae & Dwayne Knowles

Renae and Dwayne Knowles

Renae & Dwayne Knowles

Obviously we love to travel - who doesn't?!!.

Each traveller has their own style and I describe them in three styles - McDonalds, Cafe & Degustation.
1) McDonald's - country hopping in a drive thru fashion
2) Cafe - choosing a smaller region to linger and explore
3) Degustation - choosing a town and living like a local

Our travel style is Cafe - choosing a smaller region to explore and soak up the atmosphere in. I like to journal my experiences and thoughts and share them with friends and family. And I like to revisit the memories once we're home, reading and reminiscing on what we shared.

I hope you enjoy reading our tales as much as I enjoy writing them, and the ultimate joy for us would be that you find inspiration and ideas for your own trip.

Europe » Malta March 28th 2023

Week 3 – Malta (18-25 Mar) We had a heart attack at 4.30am ahead of our airport transfer. Our chalet receptionist kindly offered to drive us from the chalet to the bus station, which is 2km down the road, but when we went to leave the chalet, someone had blocked the boom gate exit by parking illegally and leaving for the night. We were completed blocked! The receptionist got out, looked around the car, tried to see if the owner had left contact details but to no avail. I immediately said “Jesus, help us!”. I then decided to check if the vehicle was unlocked and it was. The receptionist jumped in the driver’s seat and put the stick into neutral. I then pushed the car away from the boom gate, far enough to provide a gap ... read more
Typical street in Birgu
Birgu entry gate
Yellow door

Europe » France » Rhône-Alpes » Les Menuires March 19th 2023

Week 2 – Les Menuires, 3 Vallees (11-18 March) We immediately regretted our decision not to stay in Val for the whole two weeks. The last time we stayed in the 3 Valleys in 2015, we were in Meribel Mottaret. This time we decided to stay in Les Menuires, which is in one of the other valleys. First impressions? I don’t like it. We knew it would be ugly because it’s purpose built (aka ugly apartments rather than cute chalets) but the way it’s spread out with buses that only run every 20 mins, compared to every 5-8 mins in Val, makes it difficult to get around. Add to that the fact that whilst it snowed in Val, it rained in the 3 Valleys and as a result, the slopes at 1850m are a patchwork of ... read more
Val Thorens
Lunch in Les Bruyeres
The morning after the snow storm

Europe » France » Rhône-Alpes » Val-d'Isère March 11th 2023

Itinerary: · 2 Mar – dep SYD · 3 Mar – Lyon · 4-11 Mar – Val d’Isere · 11-18 Mar – Les Menuires (3 Valleys) · 18-25 Mar – Malta · 27 Mar – arr SYD Week 1 – Val d’Isere (4-11 March) After 9 months of planning the day finally arrived for us to depart from Sydney. Dale, Mum and Dad had departed a day earlier and flew into Zurich with the plan to catch the Glacier Express scenic train from St Moritz to Zermatt. Our flight from Sydney to Singapore was thankfully uneventful with a row all to ourselves. Unfortunately our night flight from Singapore to Frankfurt was very eventful with the passenger on the window waking us every 2-3 hours needing to go to the bathroom. At first it was very annoying ... read more
First lunch - 10 euro
Je voudrais...all of them!!
Lugdunum (aka Lyon's Roman Gaul Theatre)

North America » United States » Alaska September 28th 2022

Wed, 21 September – Cruise day 1 - Vancouver It was a sublime sleep in our room at the Sahara Hotel which was rudely interrupted by a 4.30pm alarm, reminding us of our 7am flight. Such a shame to leave a wonderfully cosy bed. We returned the car, flew from Vegas to Portland and then Portland to Vancouver. We were anxious about the flights because our original itinerary was to fly direct from Vegas to Vancouver with Air Canada, but they cancelled their morning flight and so we were bumped onto the alternative via Portland. The anxiety came because the cruise had bumped up their departure time from 6pm to 4pm and our rerouted itinerary meant landing at 11.50am instead of 10.30am, so our 8-hr buffer had shrunk to 4 hrs, assuming no delays. At Portland ... read more
Lions Gate Bridge, Vancouver

North America » United States September 19th 2022

Sun, 18 September - Sedona We’ve never been to Sedona before and we arrived in the dark last night so had absolutely no idea what the terrain was like but when we woke up this morning and looked outside – wow! If you were to take Uluru, the Olga's and Kings Canyon, add them to the McDonnell ranges and encircle Alice Springs, making all within a 5-30 min drive, and then you plonked trendy Byron Bay where Alice is, that is what Sedona is like. It’s lots of stunning desert mountain formations above ground, interlaced by canyons and enveloping a very trendy resort town spread out over the picturesque landscape. It’s obviously a rich man’s playground, if the designer houses on croppy outlooks are anything to go by. They aptly call it Red Rock country and ... read more
Our lunch spot on Oak Creek
Sunrise over Cathedral Rock
Occasionally I'm up at the crack of dawn

North America » United States September 15th 2022

Thu, 15 September – Page One of the things I really like about the Bryce Canyon region is the dedicated paved bike paths that meander through the trees and across the landscapes. We first noticed the path in Red Canyon, which is a small state park about 20 miles out of Bryce. It’s actually a vivid red and quite a beauty in and of itself, and we stopped there for a short walk before continuing our exit. We wished we’d had an extra night to explore the little gem rather than just drive through it. Back to the bike path. It goes all the way to Bryce Canyon and inside the park for miles. There must be at least 50 miles of bitumen. I’m so impressed at their commitment to fund such an extensive network for ... read more
Crowds overlooking Horseshow Bend
Horseshoe Bend at sunset
Lake Powell - Arizona's water source

North America » United States » Utah September 15th 2022

Tue, 13 September – Zion and Bryce NPs Today I am an invalid. My thighs are stiff as a board. I know I only walked 10km yesterday but I reckon the 2km of continual twitching quadriceps added a virtual 8km of extra effort to my legs. At least, it feels that way. Dwayne, on the other hand, has pulled up a-ok. I guess those HIIT sessions with the millions of squats haven’t really worked for me! It started raining heavily overnight and was still going when we woke, so we took our time checking out. We couldn’t even see the mountains when we started but by the time we got to Zion the rain had abated enough to walk around. We drove through the Zion-Mt Carmel tunnel and stopped on the other side to do an ... read more
Natural Arch

North America » United States » Utah September 12th 2022

Sun, 11 September Zion National Park. There are so many and so few words that best describe this place. It's scale and beauty is epic, imposing, surreal and captivating. It's impossible to tear your glued eyes away from the scenery, which feels very much like a movie set back drop because it's so picture perfect. The narrow canyons have towering red cliffs - rugged and sometimes sheer - rising 1km above the valley floor. It reminds me of both Yosemite and Kings Canyon merged together. There are two main canyons. The first is run by a shuttle only and has the majority of the walks. Some walks are easy or moderate and some are strenuous. You catch this from the Visitor Centre and it shuttles back and forth from stops 1 to 9. The trip itself ... read more
Train up to Scout’s Lookout
Path through a canyon
Angel’s Landing

North America » United States » Utah September 10th 2022

Fri, 9 September All great stories are supposed to start with a catchy punchline or phrase but unfortunately this blog can't start that way because the first part of our trip (the flights) was very disappointing. We flew Sydney to Las Vegas via Vancouver and both flights were packed to the rafters and therefore quite noisy with people chatting during the night as well as babies that cried for 10 of the 14hr flight. Usually we grab a couple of winks but this was not the case on the Sydney - Vancouver flight. All flights were delayed an hour, although that didn't affect our connections. We then had issues with our hire car at Avis. My printed confirmation and reminder had the price as USD 604 but their computer system was showing as USD 2500. After ... read more

North America » United States » Nevada September 9th 2022

Hi Friends After a 2 year hiatus due to a little known thing called Covid, we're finally back on the international circuit. Below is our itinerary for the 3 week trip: Day Date Itinerary Fri 9-Sep-22 Sydney > Las Vegas Sat 10-Sep-22 Zion NP Sun 11-Sep-22 " Mon 12-Sep-22 Zion - Angels Landing Hike Tue 13-Sep-22 Bryce Canyon Wed 14-Sep-22 Zebra Slot Canyon Hike Thu 15-Sep-22 Page (Horseshoe Bend and Antelope Canyon) Fri 16-Sep-22 Williams Sat 17-Sep-22 Grand Canyon Steam Train Sun 18-Sep-22 Sedona Mon 19-Sep-22 " Tue 20-Sep-22 Las Vegas Wed 21-Sep-22 Las Vegas > Vancouver, depart on Holland America's Zuiderdam at 4pm Thu 22-Sep-22 Inside Passage - scenic cruising Fri 23-Sep-22 Tracy Arm Inlet & Juneau Sat 24-Sep-22 Skagway - White Pass Railway Sun 25-Sep-22 Glacier Bay - scenic cruising Mon 26-Sep-22 Ketchikan Tue ... read more

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