Jo and Brett

lingards long weekend

Jo and Brett

Married in May and travelling the rest of the year away!

North America » Canada » British Columbia » Vancouver August 26th 2011

Vancouver Our first evening in Vancouver was spent in good company with another friend of Jo's from Banff, her ex-housemate Martha. After meeting up with us when we arrived, Martha sorted us out for accommodation and then it was down to business: an evening beer and dinner at a great waterfront restaurant on Kitsilano Beach. Luckily they had wings as Jo was on a mission to enjoy them as much as possible while in Canada. As we had both previously been to Vancouver, we spent most of our time enjoying the sunshine and walking the various districts of downtown. The weather was great for us again so it was pretty nice playing tourist. We checked out Canada Place, the famous white-sail building on the waterfront and stumbled across an installation art piece by Douglas Copeland of ... read more
Digital whale watching
All the gear...
Whale sighting!

North America » United States » New York » New York August 18th 2011

New York We arrived to a hot and humid New York City, quite the contrast to temperatures we had come accustomed to in Greenland and Iceland. We had both been to New York separately before and had done most of the touristy sight-seeing throughout the city, so this time our few days would hopefully be a little more relaxed. We stayed in Upper West Manhatten, near the north western edge of Central Park, which was our destination for our first day. We entered the park and immediately were overwhelmed by the number of active people, running and cycling around the traffic-free road within the park grounds. Without joining the hoards in keeping fit, we also followed the road south, taking in the scenery of the large, urban, landscaped fields, lakes and wooded areas. We turned out ... read more
Liberty & Jo
Times Square
What? Huh? Speak up!

North America » Greenland » South Greenland August 11th 2011

While Iceland was definitely lacking the 'ice', Greenland did it's bit to make up for it. Within minutes of hitting the coastline we could see a sea of shattered icebergs and a land of snow and glaciers below us. 'Greenland' was named as a bit of a marketing ploy by the Norwegian born Viking, Eric the Red, hoping that the pleasant name would attract others to settle in this newly discovered country from his previous homeland, Iceland. Most of the country is uninhabitable for 'European style' settlement but the south-west coast - the area we travelled - in summer was green with enough good land for farming. Eric's ploy worked and the Vikings settled in Greenland for about 986 years but mysteriously disappeared in the 15th Century. There is a theory that a 'Little Ice Age' ... read more
The colourful town of Qassiarsuk
Icebergs ahead
Swirling cloud

Europe » Iceland » Southwest » Reykjavík August 3rd 2011

Iceland: known as the land of fire and ice. Well, we didn't get to witness any fire and there was a lot less ice or snow than we had expected - it was summer - but the name does give you certain expectations. In Icelandic history, the stories of the Vikings are recorded in mammoth accounts known as The Sagas and in what is fast becoming a common event, our flight from Zurich, Switzerland to Reykjavik, Iceland was not without drama. We would like to think of this as a 'saga' of our own (but we'll make it much shorter...) We arrived at Zurich airport to check in for our 7.20pm flight and after some confused searching by the attendant were told that we were not on the passenger list for this flight … but had ... read more
The Sun Voyager
The Harpa, Reykjavik
Mud Monster, Blue Lagoon, Reykjavik

Europe » Switzerland July 28th 2011

Switzerland has a lot going for it: beautiful 'Sound of Music' style countryside, the snow-capped Alps, Roger Federer, cool clocks, famous cheese and don't forget all that chocolate. It was exactly what we expected it to be and was a welcome change of pace after the slightly more tense travels in Russia. The only draw back for us humble travellers was that Switzerland is expensive! Really expensive. With one of the strongest currencies in the world and the highest average wealth per adult (2010. Australia is 3rd apparently!) it did seem painful at times to convert costs. Wanting to save our francs for the more essential items such as Toblerone and Lindt chocolate, we became experts at the self-catering deal and though I don't think either of us will want to see a cheese and salami ... read more
Geneva's Jet d'Eu
Mountain Adventurers!

Europe » Russia » Northwest » Moscow July 19th 2011

Saint Petersburg We arrived to a sunny and warm St Petersburg Airport and headed into the city to find our accommodation for the next 3 nights. Following directions given to us, we walked through an archway off the main road into a small courtyard of Eastern Block stylised buildings, where we would find our hostel. On first impressions it wasn't winning Jo over, who was already on edge after a not-so pleasant introduction to Moscow on the metro: Jo had boarded first and Brett followed but so did three local guys who thought it would be a bit of a laugh - or worth their while - to give Brett a bit of a 'shake down'. Not really clocking what was happening, it wasn't until Brett stepped away that we realised they were probably trying to ... read more
Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood, St Petersburg
The Hermitage
Russian Ballerinas

Europe » Croatia » Dalmatia » Petrcane July 11th 2011

After two nights rest in London, we were off to Croatia. Because we like to keep things interesting, our trip to the airport on the Monday morning went something like this: 7am - go to Post Office and collect passports (we had sent these away to get our Russian Visas while travelling through the UK) 7.30am - after being driven through London traffic (thanks LB!) it was a run to the Underground then a run to the train station to get the 7.42am train to Gatwick Airport. 8.10am - run through the airport to the check-in desk where 'last call' passengers were being bought forward: that was us for sure! 9.00am - We made it before the check-in closed, headed through security and got to the gate with a whole 5 minutes to spare before final ... read more
Dubrovnik harbour
Bar with a view
Extra good

Europe » United Kingdom » Wales » Gwynedd » Snowdonia July 2nd 2011

We made our way out from Edinburgh down over the border to leave Scotland - but hopefully not forever. Our destination was the walled city in Northern Yorkshire, York. York & the Vikings Since an earlier visit to York a few years before, the Viking Centre had been number one on Jo's list. Alas, the first time around it was too late to visit the museum so Jo had to make do playing with the replica swords and helmets in the gift shop. Not a complete loss! This time round though she wasn't missing out and had Brett ready and waiting along with the hoards of school children at the entrance in the morning. The Jorvik Centre is built over the remains of 1000 year old houses unearthed in excavations between 1976-81 and showcases the artifacts ... read more
York Minster
Harlech Castle

Europe » United Kingdom » Scotland » Midlothian » Edinburgh June 27th 2011

We arrived to Edinburgh on the Saturday to some worrying news: our booked accommodation had been cancelled and it seemed Edinburgh was the city to be in this weekend: the Highland Games were on, Prince Charles was in town to open the Royal Armed Services Day, the Edinburgh International Film Festival was kicking off that night with Kings of Leon making a special opening appearance and then also playing a sold out concert on the Sunday night. Perhaps we should have done our research... Our quest of finding a room was looking grim as everywhere was already booked up, but we eventually found one – only 4* star would do! :S So after a hit to the wallet, we hit the Royal Mile, the main street through the Old Town, connecting Edinburgh Castle at the top ... read more
Atmospheric City
She blinked!

Europe » United Kingdom » Scotland » Inverness-shire » Inverness June 23rd 2011

Isle of Skye Our travels from Fort William to Isle of Skye took us past one of the more famous castles (told you there where plenty of them). Another 15th century clan stronghold, you may remember Eilean Donan from such famous appearances as 'Castle' in the Highlander movie... if not - it's a lovely castle surrounded by water and thankfully accessible by bridge. The appeal to the castle is not just that it's still more or less fully in tact, but that it is still used as a residence today. Perhaps more of a holiday home (?) as they are not there permanently. But this allows us to visit not just a castle steeped in history but also one used in the modern day. Fort Augustus After a night's stay in Isle of Skye, we paid ... read more
She's behind you...
Would you like water with that?
Highland Folk Museum

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