Sue Swan


Sue Swan


Former TravelPod Member: swanning_around

Joined: April 5th, 2010

From: lives in United Kingdom
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Africa » Madagascar » Nosy Be October 30th 2022

*** Only one snake in this blog, the last photo after Exora hotel. **** I promised video clips but travelblog seems to have removed that option from its menu. Sorry about that, will have to think of another option. If anyone knows how I could do it, please let me know. After the evening at African House it was an early start but this time only as far as the 4x4 vehicles for the journey east along the RN2. It was an all day drive, stopping for lunch en route, so we sat back to enjoy the view. Tana is huge so it takes a long time to get clear of the city. We had driven for an hour or so when a message came through from one of the other drivers that his vehicle was ... read more
But he’s not exactly smiling about it!
Typical scene in east
Radiated Tortoises used to be common

Africa » Madagascar » Nosy Be October 26th 2022

*********Anyone not keen on snakes, please note that the last 4 photos have snakes in them so stop when you get to the dinner at African House After a night in Tana we had to be up at 3am to be at the airport by 4 to check in for a 6am flight. I woke up at 2.50am, thinking firstly, I don’t want to get up, secondly, why do I feel strange? A minute later I knew why as I raced to the bathroom with a very severe bout of vomiting. Eventually, after cleaning up and showering, I put my towel back on the rail, which promptly fell off the wall! Clearly, it was not going to be a good day. I made it downstairs with packed bag, but of course could not eat or drink. ... read more
Huge articulated lorry overturned on road
Shaman of village near Black Lemur Camp
Pounding rice.

Africa » Madagascar » Nosy Be October 22nd 2022

(I have now finished the group tour but had no time to write a blog & no signal to send it anyway so I am trying to bring them up to date in the next few days, so apologies if they come thick & fast! On the other hand, they may not go at all, so fingers crossed) Daniel, the wildlife expert ( mainly herpetology, the little things), and Harry, (Hery), the Malagasy tour guide/director met me at the airport. The group met up on the evening of the October 1, and set off early on the 2nd. We soon realised ‘early’ was our new normal! We rarely started later than 6am and sometimes earlier. It was a motley crew, sharing only one thing in common, we are all retired and of a certain age. There ... read more
Pirogue rowers start young!
Party by the shore?
Not sure where she is going, but can you see the yellow ‘mask’

Africa » Madagascar » Toliara » Tolear September 30th 2022

. MADAGASCAR Ethiopian Airlines delivered me safely to Antananarivo ( not surprisingly known as Tana for short), the capital of Madagascar after a 7 1/2 flight London to Addis Ababa, and 4 hour flight from Addis to Tana. The whole journey was very smooth and well organised and on exiting I soon saw my guide with my name on a card. Rainbow Tours arranged the trip, using an agent company called Za, here on the ground. So far everything has worked like clockwork and I have been passed like a precious parcel from one person to another and tracked all the way as I move on. After arriving from London I slept a night in Tana and was whisked away early in the morning for a flight to Tulear ( or Toliara, more about names shortly), ... read more
One type of spiny bush
Ifaty beach
Madagascar bee eater

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona July 29th 2022

CRUISING I started writing this blog a few days ago by talking about destinations but half way through I decided to change the format. The reason being, I have been seeing so many wonderful historic sites that even I am beginning to feel jaded and think, oh, yet another cathedral/castle/ancient ruin etc. I have enjoyed them all but there is a limit to how much you can take in day after day! A sea day came as a welcome break. If that is the effect on me I think it could be much worse for readers. Plus I thought some people might like more information about the cruise experience, particularly for a lone traveller so I will start there and then go through the destinations and if boredom sets in you can stop reading. Jim & ... read more
The Sea Walk, disconcerting just to see sea below your feet
Ship’s atrium 3 decks high
The Egg Drop competition- good to see the hard hat!

Africa » Egypt » Red Sea » Sharm el-Sheikh July 1st 2022

I didn’t plan to blog about Egypt but after being here a couple of weeks I decided to record some of the quirks of Egypt and the Jaz Fanara hotel in particular. I had decided to spend some time in Egypt, at a hotel on the beach and close to a reef where it is easy to spend a lot of time snorkelling. The plan being not to leave the hotel, but snorkel, read and plan more trips which is why I called the blog a little patch of earth. A few weeks before leaving Gillian found she was free to join me so we added her on to the booking with Tui. The airport experience was still chaotic and surprisingly Tui handled it less well than easyJet. The queues were long, only 2 check-ins open ... read more
You can see the reef clearly
Across the pool to the main building
Palms pretty at night

Middle East » Cyprus » Nicosia May 27th 2022

The panorama is part of the view from the house. In the evening the sun looks as though it is rolling down the end of the Akamas Peninsular to set in the sea. I am back in Polis with Barry & Carolyn, having returned from Gazimagusa (Famagusta) back to Nicosia where I spent 3 nights which gave me the chance to walk around Nicosia (Lefkosia) old town ( in the Republic of Cyprus) and North Nicosia (Lefkosa) across the buffer zone in the Turkish part. My hotel was very comfortable and conveniently located just off the side of Ledra Street which is the main pedestrian shopping precinct that leads up to the checkpoint. So in 5 minutes I could cross the border. It was called Royiatiko which I thought was a strange, non-Greek sounding name. I ... read more
Leventis Municipal Museum
Leventis Municipal Museum
Example of a drawing

Middle East » Cyprus » Nicosia May 20th 2022

Sorry about the technical difficulties with the last blog. I panicked when I realised that I was seeing & doing so much that the blog would go on forever and I would never get to the end so I decided to split it and post one straight away. Hence the chaos! I intend to stay calm and try harder this time, let’s see if that happens. The first 3 pictures are of Kakapetria in the Troodos region which should have been in the last blog. I called the last blog Complex and Surprising Cyprus. Complex because of the history, ancient and modern which has resulted in a divided island and surprising because although small it has a mix of areas ranging from traditional villages, towns, tourist resorts, cities, forests, mountains, gorges, beaches, and ‘alpine’ type villages ... read more
Old Kakapetria
Very narrow lanes in Old Kakapetria
Monument outside Old Town walls, Magusa

Middle East » Cyprus » Famagusta May 19th 2022

Hi, blogs are like buses - again, 2 together, but there is a reason, 10 photos went AWOL! So will try to attach here. Plus, I called the blog Complex Cyprus but I haven’t explained why, that comes next time!... read more
Mosaic site
Those in the house of Dionysus are under cover
Dionysus, why they called it House of Dionysus

Middle East » Cyprus » Paphos » Polis May 12th 2022

April/May 2022 Finally the world seems to be opening up again and I have been able to confirm travel plans to Egypt & Madagascar, however the planned stopover of two weeks in Ethiopia en route to Madagascar has been cancelled as the travel compamy decided it was still too great a risk to take people there because of the civil unrest and fighting in Tigray. Ethiopians in that area are really suffering and having a struggle to find food & stay safe. Sadly they have experienced suffering in many different forms over the years. In the early 80s East Sussex County Council acted as hosts to some Ethiopian visitors who worked in Local Government there, as part of an Aid Programme. One man was placed in accommodation in Eastbourne and as I commuted from there each ... read more
Squacco heron in stream below house
Tiny harbour at Pomos
You know I can’t resist lizards!

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