Page 5 of WayneandLiz Travel Blog Posts

Middle East » Turkey » Marmara » Istanbul June 28th 2014

Istanbul: the WCERE conference (World Congress of Environmental and Resource Economists). June 26 & 27, 2014. Our trip started off from Ron's apartment in Brookline on a humid morning, catching the T with him as he went to work. We continued on to Logan after saying goodbye at South Station. Things did not bode well for an easy trip when the wheel on my duffle bag split open at check-in! I envisioned myself (or more likely, Wayne) dragging a crippled bag all around Istanbul and Switzerland. More on that later. We flew to Toronto first and had three hours sitting in a waiting area (with free iPads at each seat!) where we could watch the US lose to Germany in the World Cup in Rio. At about 4 pm we boarded the Air Canada flight to ... read more
Taksim Square
Corn for sale by street vendors

North America » Canada » Alberta » Banff National Park June 10th 2013

The Banff Centre serves a great buffet breakfast, which we shared with other conference attendees. Then Wayne went off to his sessions, and I walked to town for some window shopping. I also went to the Cascade Gardens, but only pansies were planted yet. It's hard to remember how late the spring comes here. At noon I took advantage of an aerobics class, "Anything Goes," with weights, bands, and the Bosu (half ball). It was good to work other parts of the body after so much leg work with all of our hiking. The class was really fun and well taught. Unfortunately, there are no classes on the weekend, so this will be my only one. After a strange lunch thrown together from various bits we have accumulated, I walked out to the view of the ... read more
Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel
On the shore of Lake Louise
Snowy trail at Lake Louise

North America » Canada June 7th 2013

Another beautiful day in paradise! Our morning exercise consisted of an hour's hike up and down Bear's Hump, which provides a panoramic view of the whole Waterton Lakes area. At 6:30 am we had it all to ourselves - O, Canada! The climb is a steep ascent over railroad-tie steps placed by someone who had very long legs, I think, but the reward is definitely worth the brief effort. Another breakfast buffet back at the hotel, a quick packing job, and we were off to see a buffalo herd just outside the park. Perhaps it was a bad idea to admire the majestic bulls and the cute little calves immediately before our next stop, the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, a World Heritage Site built into a cliff over which the Native Americans drove buffaloes to their death. ... read more
Head-Smashed-In center

Once again taking advantage of our Spring Special deal at Bayshore Resort, we enjoyed a hearty buffet breakfast, including lots of fresh fruit and make-your-own waffles. This was an especially good deal, given that a fruit cup alone in the adjacent coffee shop cost $9! Advice for campers or any tourists coming to Waterton Lakes: you might want to stop at Pincher Creek on your way in and stock up on fresh produce, because there's not much available in Waterton. While digesting we caught up on some work and email. There's no escape! Then we caught the 10:00 boat to Goat's Haunt, the southernmost point in Upper Waterton Lake. Our purpose was to follow the route of the guided International Peace Park Hike that we'd researched online, an eight-mile all-day hike along the lake shore that ... read more
Wayne clears customs

North America » Canada » Alberta » High River June 6th 2013

Waking up to bright sunlight in our room we looked forward to Colleen's breakfast at Highwood Views B&B. We were not disappointed. Fruit, yogurt, French toast, and even a homemade grape syrup along with the traditional maple. All while enjoying the view of snow capped mountains behind the grazing cattle just outside our window. As we were packing up the car to leave, we noticed other things moving among the cattle and realized they were three coyotes, distinguishable from dogs by their kind of skulking gait. While we were still celebrating this find, we noticed that the grass in the foreground seemed to be moving rather oddly. In fact, it was teeming with prairie dogs dashing this way and that, fighting and tumbling, and stopping to stand up and scan the area. Adorable! Especially if we're ... read more

North America » Canada » Alberta » Calgary June 5th 2013

June 3 Boston to Calgary. Loaded the car in pouring rain and had two-hour drive to Logan, arriving about 9 to find our flight to Montreal was delayed by an hour. Fortunately still made our connection and had time for Tim Horton's lunch before the long flight to Calgary. We had seats with TV screens on the Air Canada flight. Yay! Enjoyed the movie Parental Guidance (Billy Crystal, Bette Middler). After landing we drove about an hour down to High River, passing through a lot of prairie and the occasional dense townhouse developments which struck us as odd. About ten minutes west of High River we came to the Highwood Views B&B. The hostess Colleen greeted us in front of her modest-looking home and led us around to a rear entrance on the lower level. From ... read more

North America » United States » Maine » Biddeford October 18th 2012

Whew, 22 hours transit time is a long poke, especially when it starts at 5:30 a.m., so you aren't able to sleep for the long leg across the Pacific! Looking back, it is all a blur of airplane meals (six of them?) and movies. The best I saw was The Joy Luck Club, culturally appropriate for a trip from China. But here we are back in Maine, having been picked up at the airport by Erika. We find that in our absence Dayton was in the news for having a domestic shooting incident and a 4.0 earthquake. Good thing we were away in the relative safety of China. Now we are reveling in having (1) western bathrooms, (2) drinkable tap water, (3) sheets on the bed as opposed to hot comforters, and (4) peanut butter. We're ... read more

Asia » China » Hainan » Sanya October 16th 2012

Oct. 14. We were sad to say goodbye to our fellow travelers. Everyone had gotten along well, and we had shared so many adventures together. Michael, of course, had been a fantastic and entertaining guide. We hope our paths will cross again. Wayne and I got a ride on our tour bus with several others flying out of Hong Kong at about the same time. We, however, are not getting onto a 13-hour flight, at least not yet. We flew an hour and a half to Sanya, Hainan Island, the "Hawaii" of China. We had been invited by the Jin family, Wayne's student Jin Wang and his parents. Their home is on the north side of Hainan, but they thought we would enjoy the tourist attractions on the south side, so they put us up in ... read more

Asia » Hong Kong » Lantau Island October 13th 2012

Oct. 13 Hong Kong Disneyland!! Those who know us will not be surprised that we succumbed to the lure of Disneyland on our free day, being frequent visitors to Disney World and California Disneyland, as well as one-time EuroDisney visitors. The opportunity to compare was just too enticing to pass up. Warning: if you are not Disney fans, this will probably not interest you! The metro ride from our hotel in the center of Hong Kong Island to the gate took about one and a quarter hours but was very easy to navigate using the station maps. This was a Saturday, so we expected crowds but were pleasantly surprised to walk right up to a ticket window with no line. The daily pass cost about $50 US. Opening time was late, 10:30, so we were there ... read more

Asia » Hong Kong » Hong Kong Island » Wan Chai October 12th 2012

Oct. 11. We arrived at the Hong Kong airport on time at about 10:00 a.m. and went through customs and immigration. This may seem odd since we're still in China, but the border between the mainland and Hong Kong is not completely free. Hong Kong is a special administrative region (SAR), which, as our local guide William pointed out, had an inconvenient connotation for tourists during the SARS outbreak in 2003. He sat idle for five months. Anyway, speech, etc. is more free here, and mainland Chinese need permission to cross the border. A little history of Hong Kong: there are three main parts of this city of seven million people: Hong Kong Island, Kowloon Peninsula, and the New Territories. In 1841 Britain took only Hong Kong Island after winning the first Opium War. In 1859, ... read more

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