Easy Travelling

Easy Travelling – that is, not bicycling in 34º C heat and humidity on the narrow roads of Sri Lanka overwhelmed by traffic. Or – not carrying a canoe and seventy kilograms of food and gear over an overgrown  two-kilometer portage trail that hasn’t been used in a decade.

While most of my trips involve a canoe or hiking/mountaineering boots or my touring bicycle, on occasion I’ve focussed on cultural travel, either with my wife and/or with an organized group.  Our most-used  company is Exodus Travels which specializes in small group (8 to 16) travel.  We’ve used them a dozen times over the past twenty years with the Sri Lanka and  Myanmar trips being the most recent.  Other agencies like G-Adventures and Intrepid offer similar well-organized and expertly guided trips.

The fact that I am longer thirty years old and have a bit of money to spare means I can rationalize a few more indulgences!  I usually combine the organized part of the trip – often two weeks –  with a week or ten days at the end to explore further on my own. It strikes a nice balance.

Argentina:

By Boat And Bus Through The Andes – The Cruce Andino

Bariloche – Argentina’s Outdoor Playground Capital

Australia:

A Boat Cruise To the Bottom of Tasmania’s Bruny Island

Bolivia:

Getting Real High In Bolivia: La Paz, Lake Titicaca, and the Cordillera Real

A Traveller’s Guide To La Paz, Bolivia

Photos of Photos – A Visit To La Paz’s Museo Nacional de Etnografia y Folklore

Bolivian Travels: From La Paz To Copacabana And The Shores Of Lake Titicaca

Bolivian Travels: From Copacabana To Isla del Sol

Bolivian Travels: Walking Through The Ruins of Isla del Sol and Isla de la Luna

Chile:

By Boat And Bus Through The Andes – The Cruce Andino

Sri Lanka:

Sri Lanka – What Caught My Eye

Walking In Sri Lanka’s Hill Country & The Cultural Triangle

Sri Lanka’s Dambulla Cave Temple: A Buddhist Treasure Trove

Before Machu Picchu Was, There Was Sri Lanka’s Sigiriya

Colombo’s National Museum: Some Of What You’ll See

Buddhist Baroque: Colombo’s Gangaramaya Temple

Seema Malaka: Colombo’s Serene Buddhist Island Vihara

The Ruins of Ancient Anuradhapura – Part One

The Ruins of Ancient Anuradhapura – Part Two

Up The Steps Of Sri Lanka’s Mihintale (Mahinda’s Hill)

A Visit To The Ruins of Sri Lanka’s Ancient Polonnaruwa – Part 1

A Visit To The Ruins of Sri Lanka’s Ancient Polonnaruwa – Part 2

The Aukana Buddha: Sri Lanka’s Colossal Standing Rock Statue

Sri Lanka’s Horton Plains and The View From World’s End

A Train Ride Across The Highlands of Sri Lanka

Myanmar:

“Mingalaba” From Myanmar, Land of The Golden Pagodas

Ballooning Over The Plains Of Myanmar’s Bagan

The Uninspiring Buddhas Of Myanmar’s Bagan

A Morning Stroll Through Mandalay’s Zay Cho Market Area

Pindaya’s Shwe-oo-min Pagoda & The Cave of the Ten Thousand Buddhas

Myanmar’s Inle Lake – Things To See and Do – Day One

Myanmar’s Inle Lake – Things To See and Do – Day Two

A One-Day Tour of Bago, Myanmar – Checklist of Must-See Sites

Bago’s Shwemawdaw Pagoda – Myanmar’s Tallest Stupa

Bago’s Hintha Gon and the Rebuilt Kanbawzathadi Palace

An Afternoon In Bago – Visiting the Reclining Buddhas

An Afternoon In Bago – the Mahazedi, the Shwegugale Paya, and More

more to come on Rangoon (now called Yangon) in following weeks

 

Nepal’s Kathmandu Valley

The Kathmandu Valley And Its UNESCO Cultural Heritage Sites

 Swayambhunath: Buddha Eyes Over The Kathmandu Valley

The Boudhanath Stupa – The Heart Of Nepal’s Tibetan Community

6 Responses to Easy Travelling

  1. Ronit says:

    Looks right up my alley- the things you write about- alo beautiful pictures.

    I ran into your post because we will be travelling to Chile and have about 12 days.
    We want to head south to Patagonia.

    • true_north says:

      Ronit, Chile is a long narrow country with massive distances between places and often no roads to get you there directly. For example, it is 3000 kilometers by road from Santiago to Puerto Natales! Yes, you can take the ferry from Puerto Montt to Puerto Natales but you will have to get to Puerto Montt from Santiago first – it is almost 1000 kilometers. Add to that the four days on the ferry and you’d be spending half your vacation travelling to Puerto Natales. Now you may be a big fan of travelling on ferries. In that case, you have found your dream vacation.

      If not, it may make more sense to fly from Santiago to Punta Arenas (four hours!) and take a three-hour bus ride up to Puerto Natales. You would then have more time to spend in southern Patagonia. It really all depends on what you want to do.

      Best of luck in making it all fit into your twelve-day time frame.

  2. Ronit says:

    I could use some general direction- for example, from Santiago should I take a ferry to P Natales? then visit the Torres del Paine park? Then head south to Punta Arenas and from there do some day trips?

    • true_north says:

      Ronit, you can’t take the ferry directly from Santiago. You would have to bus or fly down to Puerto Montt first and then take the ferry.

      Ask yourself – Do I want to spend half my vacation getting to southern Patagonia or do I want to spend most of my time in southern Patagonia? Your answer will determine your travel choices.

  3. Toby says:

    hey hey true north, greetings from the far south… Venice,FL! in process of planning a cycling trip to Cuba. my idea is to take a bike to ride, then donate to a local. have a few questions concerning the current bikes you saw over there. were they mainly cheap Chinese bikes? I wanna take something that’ll leave the local with an upgrade… would 26″ or 700c hybrid bike be better? gotta think of availible parts, etc. you input would be appreciated. peace out!

    • true_north says:

      Toby, to quote the Raptors’ logo and the rapper Drake – We The North up here in the Six!

      Someone will appreciate any bike you leave behind and anything you bring will be an upgrade. Spare parts will always be a problem but the 50’s vehicles still on the road are a testament to their ingenuity!

      I hope you have an enjoyable bike ride in Cuba. Better check it out now to get an idea of the way it was before the flood of change hits the island.

Your comments and questions are always appreciated, as are any suggestions on how to make this post more useful to future travellers. Just drop me a line or two!

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