Page 3 of gillg Travel Blog Posts

Asia » Pakistan » Northern Areas » Skardu August 6th 2019

Sleeping Altitude 2230m or maybe 2310m depending on your info source Day 8 0512 sunrise across the mountains, open up the door to let in some cool air. We don't have much of a plan for today as it's mostly for the company to get the permits finalised, organise their porters and cooks and purchase food supplies. Still feel slightly subpar in the gut so decide to hit up my drug stash- Azithromycin, Lomotil, Buscopan and Ondansetron pre breakfast ought to finally knock it on the head. No idea when breakfast is so after a hot bucket and ladle "shower" wander down to the restaurant area. There are several tables occupied - the large French group (actually all svelte, just large in number), a Spanish group (animated), an Irish group (slightly animated- probably less so than ... read more
Shoe Shop Downtown Skardu

Asia » Pakistan » Northern Areas August 5th 2019

Sleep in Skardu Sleeping Altitude 2310 m Day 7 0545 completely ready, bill paid at 0600 and we're loaded up into 2 cars by 0605 for the 30 minute drive to Islamabad Airport. I'm already separated from my backpack which has disappeared into the other vehicle. Check in is very smooth and my backpack turns up. We chat to a few other tourists in the queue- I entertain a group of Malaysians with my very rudimentary Bahasa Indonesian/Malayu. The other tourists are predominately well toned, well tanned Europeans with excellent hiking clothing and backpacks. From here we tourists seem to move en masse to the western style coffee shops (we choose Bread Hut because the well dressed Euros beat us to the other one) to top up on one last decent cup before heading into the ... read more
Mighty Indus River

Asia » Pakistan » Islamabad August 4th 2019

Days 5 and 6 Aug 3 My stomach hurts, you know in that crampy way. Lousy night, clearly I was a very considerate roommate- Mary had no idea I'd been up half the night. She slept well in between coughing and had no issues whatsoever with her chicken last night. Headed gingerly into the Shelton House dining room where we met 2 of our group- Lynton from Victoria (who I had conversed with by Messenger in Aust but hadn't actually met before- I think we "met" when he made a post about the trek on the Australian Long Distance Hikers FB group!) and Danny from the NT. Attempted small talk between crampy waves, trying not to let it show ahead of our big expedition. Forced down some tea and toast. Made the executive decision that Mary ... read more
Dharmarajika Info Board

Asia » Pakistan » Islamabad August 2nd 2019

Day 4 With Mary still feeling subpar we decided to take the easier option of taking a hotel car to Islamabad. We had originally planned on taking a bus which would have been cheaper (less than AUD $20 each plus some creative Ubering) but this turned out to be a great decision (mostly). There are a few luxury bus companies, we had been looking at Daewoo who have about 20 trips a day and varying standards of bus (gold, premium, etc), they look good actually. Also, the further out you book the better the deal. Anyway..... Having received my latest "more information required" email from the Ministry of Interior Visa people I was in a slightly tetchy mood and ready to negotiate hard for our car. The first offer the hotel came up with was ... read more
Katas Raj Temple Sacred Pond
Filming For Documentary and/or Music Video
Decorative Ceiling Inside Ramachandra Temple

Asia » Pakistan » Punjab » Lahore August 1st 2019

Lahore Day 3 Wake up to another visa "request for more information", resend all the documents again. I am confounded as to what information is required, they have every single document I had originally submitted and there is no one to ask about the specifics. Third time lucky? Pretty slow morning, given the short time we have in Lahore, we decide on the Badshahi Mosque and Shahi Qila (Lahore Fort) in the Walled City. It's an Uber ride away (200 PKR), we leave the hotel in bright sunshine but within 10 minutes it feels like a cyclone is coming through- the sky is black, the temperature drops and a monsoonal deluge descends. The uber driver dutifully takes us to our drop off point, it is still deluging and we try to get him to drop us ... read more
Picture Wall
Through The Window

Asia » Pakistan » Punjab » Lahore July 30th 2019

Lahore Days 1, 2 Perth to Lahore via Bangkok. Cost- AUD $652 Uneventful flights, 18 hours door to door. Note to Thai Airways- when did you get rid of your air vents? We could possibly have deflected the trillion airborne virus the guy sitting next to us for 4 hours coughing and spraying was creating. Arrival proceedings in Lahore were surprisingly efficient. Separate queue for females- bonus! Very, very short queue. Straightforward, a couple of questions and stamp, stamp of my 30 day visa (arrrgggghh- still annoyed about that!! -see trip description for details). Luggage carousel was orderly too- after last year's arrival into Dushanbe I was expecting much of the same mess but this was really efficient. Finally, at 02:00 we're in the steamy air of Lahore, 02:40 arrive at a barbed wire compound- the ... read more
Faletti's Hotel
Faletti's Hotel
Wagah Border Ceremony

Oceania » Australia » Western Australia » Augusta December 28th 2018

With almost 2 weeks of leave over my least favourite season (summer) for the Xmas and New Year break I was going a bit stir crazy. What to do? Where to go? Where could I go that wasn't going to cost much and wasn't going to kill me with heat stress? Well... with lowish summer temperatures down south for the following week, a very impromptu 7 day solo 135 km trek from Cape Naturaliste to Cape Leeuwin seemed to fit the bill. ... Impromptu, as in... decide on Wednesday night, prepare on Thursday and leave on Friday. I'm completely kitted out for this style of trip now and usually have a few homemade dehydrated meals kicking around for last minute trips like this so it just took a small amount of preparation to be ready. On ... read more
Cape Leeuwin Start Point
Clean and Ready to Go
Post Boardwalk Section Coastal Views

Asia » Tajikistan » Fan Mountains August 25th 2018

Day 5 25 August Zimtut Village (1910m) to Chukurak Lake (2350m) Wake early feeling average at best, no appetite. Breakfast arrives- bread and condensed milk (good), but then more breakfast arrives- oily egg/onion/tomato dish. Oh dear... Head up the hill with the 2 little girls to try and walk it off. There are a lot of donkeys arriving on the hill below me from the valley, they are all laden with massive dried grass loads and being driven by small kids with big sticks. Load our donkey then, like breakfast another one arrives. We have 2 donkeys, I knew we were oversupplied :). Finally 3.5 hrs after waking up we are off. Donkey 1 is a good donkey, Donkey 2- not so much- he's naughty, flatulent and loud. It's hilly from the get go, lots of ... read more
Time To Leave
Fully Loaded

Asia » Tajikistan » Fan Mountains August 24th 2018

Day 4 Collection time is 0900, awake really early, still have cramps and diarrhea. Do the whole Azithromycin, Buscopan, Gastrostop thing. Feel v apprehensive given how yuck I feel. Having said that, I still get completely packed up- my backpack plus a bag to leave at Marians, in record time. Manage an egg with some bread and jam. Buscopan, my friend... By the time Mohammed, my guide, arrives I am feeling ok- 5/10 ok. Today is going to be light and mostly driving so fingers crossed it'll be ok. But first, a trip to the supermarket. Mohammed is 23 (same age as my youngest son). The driver, Joomart, probably 30's. The jeep, green and sturdy, not sure. Saidali (owner of travel company) calls- there has been a change of plan, Mohammed will be my guide for ... read more
Spotted in Supermarket
Spotted in Supermarket
Bee Keepers Kettle

Asia » Tajikistan » Dushanbe August 23rd 2018

Day 3 NO, I am not better. Had a horrible night, abdo cramps +++ Loaded up now on Buscopan, Gastrostop and Panadol. Skip breakfast. Feel revolting. Go downstairs anyway and have a cup of tea (having triple washed my cup- discretely). The Polish girl is gone, there is an Italian girl this morning- she is covered from head to toe in bed bug bites and is on antihistamines and antibiotics (I tell her I know a good pharmacy nearby should she need to stock up - hahaha...). She picked them up somewhere on a homestay on the Pamir Highway. Two Scottish girls appear, they are heading off on the Pamir Highway that morning- they carefully note down the Italian girls homestay places so as NOT to stay there. Next comes the elusive Marian, she asks me ... read more
Rudaki Park
Typical Breadshop
Annoying Way To Spend In Dushanbe

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