Tom Rooney Travels

Tommy Rooney

Tom Rooney Travels

Hello World

Welcome to my travel blog. During this visit I encourage you to take a walk in my shoes while browsing through these entertaining and informative travel journals. My weblog features journals, photos and videos from many of the world's beautiful countries. I have over two decades of travel experience, and feel blessed to embark on regular trips abroad. There are endless delights to enjoy while exploring foreign countries. After all, how else can you meet so many of the world's proud people and experience as much wonderful culture?

Travel is developing into a lifetime passion and I believe I'm making a positive contribution to global society, thanks to the bountiful gifts bestowed on us by Mother Earth. My journals from around the world commence in 1986, and are written for you to read sequentially as a travel book if you have the time. Otherwise, feel free to pay a short visit until next time to catch up on my blog. The journey through life takes us on an unforgettable adventure, and I'm confident you'll enjoy viewing recommendations on places to stay, locations to visit, and things not to be missed for the traveller in all of us.



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until my arrival in The Mascarene Islands

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Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Auckland February 24th 2015

There's an expression that truth can be stranger than fiction, and you would hardly believe this story except for one thing, it happens to be true! My visit to Auckland was supposed to be an overnight stopover, before flying on to Tonga to enjoy the sites in my final South Pacific destination for this trip. I had flown from Apia in Samoa on Air New Zealand with a stopover in the largest city of NZ, and got up early for the ongoing flight next morning after spending an enjoyable night at a central Auckland hostel. Getting formalities done at check in and customs was a breeze, and before long we were up in the air watching the inflight instructions on the screens produced with a clever Middle Earth theme. Everything was fine, and the food and ... read more
Auckland waterfront
Beautiful building
Tommy Rooney meets Jo Trouble

Oceania » Samoa » American Samoa January 17th 2015

The lure of a flight over to American Samoa cast a powerful spell on me, and it didn't take long for the friendly staff in the Apia office of Polynesian Airlines to get my itinerary sorted. I always find it thrilling when a new travel itinerary has been finalised, and the chance to visit another country in this wonderful world becomes a real prospect. The airport to American Samoa is very close to Apia itself, only a ten minute drive in fact. The runway is only suitable for propellor planes, but the ride in the taxi entails just a few turns in an Apia neighbourhood, and suddenly the airstrip presents itself seemingly out of nowhere. I arrived at the airport a little over an hour prior to departure time, and there were a few taxis and ... read more
Beautiful beach
Tradewinds Hotel
The beach at Maracas Bay

Oceania » Samoa » Upolu » Apia January 10th 2015

To be honest I was feeling a little cross and out of sorts. There I was on New Years Eve back in the Fijian resort town of Nadi, swinging away in a hammock. The thing is though, I was meant to be in Samoa already, but Fijian Airways cancelled my flight without explanation and this had thrown my into a temporary funk. It was great to be back at Bamboo Backpackers, but it was not where I expected to be at that time. Then a beautiful blonde from Sweden approached and started a conversation. It came up within minutes of our chat we were both heading for Samoa, and after exchanging details she moved on for the evening. Part of me was thinking this was all a dream, as surely such coincidences can't happen in real ... read more
Fale on Manono Island
Apia resort entrance
Le Vasa resort beach

Oceania » Vanuatu » Efate January 3rd 2015

I'm one of those people who finds the human condition endlessly fascinating. What is it exactly that controls our emotions, the mystical trigger to determine our likes and dislikes? And yet these very preferences are different from person to person, as by definition personal taste is an individual thing. But there does seem to be a constancy in our genetic makeup, such that the things individuals like do not really change as the years go by. It has been twenty years since I last visited Vanuatu, where I stayed on Efate for a month chilling out by the beach, and discovering the rhythms of the local culture. It all seems so long ago, yet the positive memories of my time in Port Vila have always stayed with me. The years roll by and memories of past ... read more
Locals at the Blue Lagoon
Hideaway Island
The Blue Lagoon

Oceania » New Caledonia » South Province » Noumea December 27th 2014

When you consider New Caledonia is only two and a half hours flight from Sydney, visitors are really in for a pleasant surprise upon arrival in the country. The usual custom for Australians who want a taste of Europe is to get on a plane and travel half way around the world before we can enjoy the benefits of the fine cuisine, languages, and culture Europe is famed for. But right here in Noumea you will find cars driving on the right, people talking in French, patisseries and fine dining, first class roads and top rated hotels. It's all on offer when you visit this beautiful island in the South Pacific, just a hop and a skip out of Sydney. Qantas flew me direct to the capital, and the plane was full to capacity in the ... read more
Anse Vata beach
Christmas tree
The sun sets from my balcony

Oceania » Fiji » Nadi December 20th 2014

Fiji is a little patch of paradise only four hours flight from Sydney, and literally on our own doorstep. Aussies flock to this South Pacific paradise in extraordinary numbers, and it's amazing that I have not previously graced the shores of this beautiful island country. Now is the time to make amends, and I've booked a full week to get to know our near neighbour, the Rugby loving and Kava drinking friends of ours from the biggest island country in the South Pacific. Nadi is the international hub where most tourists fly into rather than the capital Suva, and the airport is less than ten kilometres from the centre of town. When I mentioned to the tourist information team where I was staying they informed me a taxi ride would be covered by Bamboo Backpackers, so ... read more
Castaway Island
Boat heading for Bounty Island
South Sea Cruises team

Europe » Portugal » Northern » Braganca December 13th 2014

Having received an invitation to attend Smart Travel 14 in Northeast Portugal is an honour, and I'm thrilled to be in the lovely city of Braganca with my generous hosts. Portugal is a country steeped in tradition with world class architecture, culture, gastronomy and wine, and the Northeast is home to the world famous port wine. There's so much on offer in this region the Portugese may just have a chance of civilising me! Everything travellers love about Western Europe is right here in the friendly Northeast, and my worldly hosts have left quite an impression. i suppose that's to be expected, as the Portugese ruled half the world during the height of the Portugese empire. So here I am, ensconced in Braganca and Mirandela for the duration of the event, and grateful for the opportunity. ... read more
Hotel & Spa Alfandega Da Fe
Grounds of Braganca Castle
Main square in Vimioso

If you were to close your eyes and picture the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about the Caribbean, it's a pretty safe bet that we would see stunning white sand, gorgeous beaches, and rows of palm trees. But when it comes to Tobago, the smaller of the two Islands that comprise T&T, the stereotypical image could not be further from the truth. Tobago is all about nature, with rolling hills and sheer drops down to the ocean from the winding roads a feature. There is also an extraordinary level of greenery on display, and tropical rains really make the colours of the island spring to life. So it proved to be a pleasant change of scene when I arrived on Tobago after experiencing so many beautiful Caribbean beaches during the course of this ... read more
Englishman's Bay
Trail to Argyle Falls

Trinidad & Tobago are the home Islands of Brian Lara and Dwight Yorke respectively. Two world famous sportsmen are proud to call these Caribbean Islands home, so if it's good enough for them it's certainly good enough for me! T&T is actually a big hitter in the Caribbean thanks to their extensive oil and gas reserves, and a lot of the banking and finance throughout the West Indies now emanates out of the capital Port of Spain. Trinidad plays host to the Carnivale in February each year, where revellers flock from all around to enjoy the boisterous street dancing, calypso and steel drums. However, aside from this once a year event the Islands are not that well known as tourist destinations. As such I was curious to begin my travels on the fifth and final destination ... read more
Surf rescue hut in Maracas Bay
Boat at Maracas Bay
The beach at Maracas Bay

The people of the West Indies seem endlessly intrigued by my wilder tendencies, which tend to surface every time I visit the Caribbean. "You're sporting bare feet man!" a woman in Barbados exclaimed in amazement the other day. The locals will stare at my feet likes it's an amazing sight to behold, but ever since I was a kid I've always loved to get around sans footwear. Sandals and other footwear can pinch and grate after a while, so it's great to feel wild and free here in the sun, that is between swims in the glorious blue waters of the Caribbean! So here I am in Barbados, a legendary resort island on the Caribbean circuit, and the island considered the most British in the region. The ties between the locals and the British are strong ... read more
Saint Lawrence Gap beach
Bathsheba beach
Store at Bathsheba beach

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