Page 2 of TeamJD Travel Blog Posts

Asia » Indonesia » Bali » Seminyak October 25th 2015

Here it is. My 40th birthday. There seems to be a lot of meaning attached to this one. It certainly is a landmark (most likely the half-way point of this human existence) but, like most things, I think it is what you believe it to be and what you make of it. A good friend reminded me that many people do not have the opportunity to live to this age and that it is an honour and privilege to awaken again each day. Thank you for this inspiration. For me personally this birthday is an occasion to visit a part of the world that I have wanted to see for some time and go on something of a spiritual, soul-searching journey. So I began the day with a yoga class at Prana, a very beautiful resort ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Bali » Seminyak October 24th 2015

On our first full day in Seminyak we wandered around the town, getting our bearings and getting a feel for the town’s character. The Lonely Planet describes Seminyak as “flash, brash, phoney and filled with bony models”. Perhaps I should have read that part of the book before setting aside four days there. It’s certainly worth a look, the beach is great, there are lots of boutiques and designer shops, and there is an abundance of restaurants and massage spas. Every man and his dog will offer you a taxi ride, a massage or some trinkets as you pass by. It’s great for the outer pleasures, but not really conducive to delving deeper. Most tourists tend to stay in Seminyak and, now that we realise how small Bali actually is, it makes sense that many people ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Bali » Seminyak October 23rd 2015

After setting up food and litter trays for the cats, we made our way to the airport. It’s not long since our last trip in July. After a year of no holidays, 2015 is certainly the year for travel. Unlike last time, we left the mains power on as we like to come back home to a working fridge :-) What a pleasant surprise to bump into an old colleague at the airport. The lovely Melvin, who used to be a concierge at National Australia Bank, is now a flight attendant for Virgin and was rostered on our flight! He looked after us beautifully – thanks Melvin! After a 6 hour flight, we landed in Denpasar and I must say I was relieved to have pre-booked our airport transfer. It’s absolute mayhem at the international airport, ... read more

Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Melbourne December 5th 2012

Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 45 weeks, 23000 km, 109 blog entries and a bit of tan later, we made it back to good old Melbourne! Wow, where did the time go?! It was only a 90 minute drive fro... read more
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Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Great Ocean Road December 2nd 2012

I organised a surprise long weekend trip along the Great Ocean Road for Dean’s birthday in July 2009. We both love that part of Victoria but this time we just seemed to whizz along it. The Twelve Apostles, a collection of limestone stacks just off the coast, took our breath away three years ago and were just as stunning this time around. These impressive formations, up to 45m high, have been formed by the gradual erosion of the soft limestone. Sadly, there are only seven Apostles left and the erosion continues. We also stopped at all the usual pretty towns, most notably Apollo Bay and Lorne. Our very last stop was Torquay. This seaside town, located at the northern end of the Great Ocean Road’s Surf Coast, is one of Australia’s surfing meccas. It wasn’t as ... read more
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Oceania » Australia » Victoria » Port Fairy November 30th 2012

Neither of us had expected all that much of Portland but it’s a really nice town! It used to be a whaling and sealing base from the early nineteenth century, a fact that the old whale boiling pot in one of the parks is testimony to… It was also one of Victoria’s earliest European settlements, and rows of plaques adorning stone walls bear the details of settlers’ arrivals along with messages from their descendents. Today, Portland’s main industry is aluminium export. The industrial wharf isn’t exactly pretty but there are still lots of beautiful colonial-era buildings dotted around town. One of these is Bay View House, constructed in 1850 in an alternative Georgian style. Mary MacKillop – Australia’s first saint who lived in Portland from 1862 to 1866 and founded the country’s first religious order – ... read more
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Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Robe November 27th 2012

These small coast-side towns are all truly lovely spots. Kingston comes very close to the very definition of peace and we enjoyed dipping into the icy ocean, cycling to the lighthouse and over to the small creek-surrounded island with its ‘human involvement’ sundial. Kingston is also home to the Big Lobster. What can I say about that… it’s… a big lobster… Our next stop, the fishing port of Robe, was my favourite. It’s got proper old country charm and a lovely laid-back atmosphere. What a pleasure it was to go sit by the pretty beach, go meandering along the main road and duck in and out of the wine shops and galleries (I love the work of glass artist Tim Shaw Robe has an abundance of old stone cottages (not something you see very much ... read more
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Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Adelaide November 24th 2012

Wow, only a month to go until Christmas! As much as I like it, I don’t think I’ll ever fully get used to Christmas during summer. It just doesn’t feel quite right. This year, we will probably be camping with friends for a few days. Well, we’ve been camping for the last 10 months, so we might as well do it over Christmas too :) I had previously only been to Adelaide for work (I was delighted that the board meeting was held at the avant-garde, barrel-shaped National Wine Centre). I made sure that I had a couple of days to myself afterwards, but I hardly recognised Adelaide this time round. Upon our arrival, we made a beeline for the beachside suburb of Glenelg, Adelaide’s answer to Melbourne’s St Kilda, and had fun perusing the shops ... read more
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Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Port Augusta November 22nd 2012

After Coober Pedy, we headed to the small town of Woomera which used to be the main site for experimental British rocket and nuclear tests. We explored the outdoor missile park and Dean visited the rocket range museum. Woomera is still an active Department of Defence test site but it feels slightly eerie and artificial. There’s a really nice outdoor swimming pool though! After a lovely swim, we had lots of fun on the diving board. Sadly, I doubt we’ll ever see the day when I manage to do a proper dive instead of a belly flop! That night we stayed at a roadside rest stop with the most stunning view of the surrounding lakes and lagoons. Our neighbour for the night was a somewhat intoxicated old chap who made good company for the evening. His ... read more
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Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Coober Pedy November 20th 2012

When we crossed the border into South Australia, it seemed like we hadn’t spent much time in the Northern Territory at all! But then much of the NT will be covered during part 2 of our trip :-) With a new state came our second time change; not that we’re all that concerned with what time it is though… The oddly named town of Coober Pedy is known as the opal capital of the world. Australia has 95% of the world’s supply of commercial opal and the largest percentage still comes from the 70 opal fields around Coober Pedy. Some fellow travellers had told us that it was an awful place to be bypassed at all costs and others had hailed it as fascinating. As it turns out, it’s actually fascinating and not nearly as bad ... read more
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