Emeralds in the rough

Whenever I’m asked when the best time to go on safari is, my enthusiastic –  if rather unhelpful – answer is “it’s always a good time to be on safari’. So, with a view to being slightly more helpful, I wanted to talk a little about Emerald Season. Conventional wisdom for years has been that […]

Lords of Greystoke 2.0

Over a decade ago, I first visited Greystoke Mahale. It left its mark on me then and has lived rent free in my head ever since. I went back again this year and immediately renewed its tenancy. Mahale is an interesting case study in the way that the experience of going on safari has evolved […]

Pining for Peru

Bold statement coming in: I’m declaring 2023 the year for Peru and, heck, why not 2024, too! The short and the sweet of it is as follows: the shadow cast by the pandemic, coupled with political unrest earlier this year, has resulted in a slower return to travel than many other countries have experienced over […]

Camargue from above

Nature is fragile, let’s preserve it. This sentence is the introduction to my video as well as my conclusion after having spent most weekends in the past 5 month in Camargue. Patiently, I explored most areas the park: its lakes, channels, tracks, beaches and salt flats, in search of the best locations. And when the […]

Take a Seat: Uruguay’s splendid table

Uruguay is of wood and marble, of grain and sheen; where rural charm sits at the table next to aristocracy and both happily have sand between their toes or dirt under the nail from the outdoor explorations of the day. Olive orchards, hillside wineries, cattle ranches and small fishing boats all populate this tiny pear-shaped […]

A lo Cubano – Agua!

I’ve freshly returned from Havana where I spent time as an ordinary traveler. A trip on my own time, on my own dime, of my own curiosity. I boarded the plane wide-eyed, and with dance shoes and dusty Spanish in tow.  I’ve been fascinated by the dance/music of Rumba, Son, Salsa, Casino Rueda for some […]

Verde que te quiero verde

The first stanza of Federico Garcia Lorca’s poem ‘Romance Sonámbulo‘  (‘Sleepwalking Romance’) translates: Green, how I want you green Green wind, green branches The boat out on the sea The horse on the mountain Written by the 20th century Spanish poet, the poem was arguably inspired by a European landscape and context, an azure Mediterranean sea and […]

Namibia in Pictures

Namibia delivers wide open spaces in a way that few other places on earth can. Dominated by a massive and ancient desert, the dominant image in people’s mind seems to be landscapes of unchanging and endless sand. While it’s true that there is a lot of sand (and I do mean a lot – I […]

The Trembling Highlands of Brazil

Ibitipoca. Tough to pronounce; hard to get to; but well worth the effort. Here goes: Ibitipoca is pronounced “ee-bitch-ee-pokah” (sounds like a palavrão I know). But it actually comes from the indigenous Tupi-guarani language in which “ybytyra” = mountain, and “pok” = burst, a combination of words the natives used to describe the intense roaring […]

Research, Rowing & Reawakening

Sometimes, when doing research you can kinda get lost in the prosaic, asking the same questions at each hotel you encounter on a site visit–how many rooms does the hotel have? Do you have interconnecting suites? Is there a 24hr gym? Is wifi included in the rate? It is important to shake free of these […]

Take Time for Barichara

As the world has been forced to slow down and the future still holds so much uncertainty, I find myself pouring over old photographs, dissecting memories of trips most dear to me, remembering places which I’m glad I’m took the time to visit. Prominent among them is Barichara in Colombia – a place I barely […]

Moonwalking to the Mont St Michel

The year is 1999, I’m a nerdy 7-year-old obsessed with dinosaurs, planet Earth, and sci-fi video games. I hear the TV talking about some grown-up commemoration on the other side of the ocean, in the United States… some vice-president with a strange name. They’re celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission. Nothing too […]

Adventures in the Great Bear Rainforest

If I had to choose a word to describe Canada’s West Coast, it could easily be crinkly. Shaped and scoured by massive glaciers, raging rivers and wild Pacific weather for millennia, the BC coast is one of the more spectacular pieces of wilderness I have ever laid eyes on. This crinkliness has shaped a unique […]

The Weber Wonderland of Arctic Watch

[This article was originally published 27 November 2019] As I sit here writing this, winter has just begun to take hold in Southern Ontario. Meanwhile, on Somerset Island, 3400 kilometres as the crow flies from where I sit, the tundra and the northwest passage have been in winter’s grip for months. Way up in Northern Nunavut, perched […]

In the Name of Nebbiolo

Remember dinner parties? The ever-gracious host. The ebullient storyteller who commandeers the conversation. The witty chap in a blazer – a date on his arm and a quip on his lips. The elegant lady in a well-tailored dress which flatters but doesn’t reveal. Her kid sister with a contagious laugh and plummeting neckline. Sigh. It’s […]

The Original Influencer

Twenty something, rebellious, and by all accounts, “randy”. A young English poet named George Gordon Byron (“Lord” to all but those who knew him well) swept through the small enclave of Sintra in 1809, penned a few lines of what would become Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, and sent letters home to friends declaring Sintra the most […]