Kyrgyzstan

The Soviet Bread Line Border Crossing

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We’ve been through a few sketchy overland border crossings before. Come to think it, many overland crossings can seem a bit dicey at times. Crossing from Kazakhstan into Kyrgyzstan was definitely one of those times. We had just met our driver Hasan, who spoke zero English, that morning in Almaty. The drive to the border […]

Kazakhstan

Fermented Horse Milk For The Road

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I was pretty sure before even starting this trip that gaining any weight wouldn’t be an issue. It’s an active itinerary with a fair bit of walking and hiking, sure, but that can easily be offset by rich lavish meals on a daily basis. So that’s not the reason. The issue really is that Central […]

Oman

A Day Trip By Air

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Day trips to nearby cities are a given. Occasionally we’ve been able to make a day trip to or through an adjacent country. Without exception so far, these trips have been overland. For this trip, we decided to try something new right at the beginning: visiting another country with a roundtrip plane ticket on the […]

Japan

The era of the “Gaijin Bump” is coming to a close

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One of the prize games in Japanese arcades is a variation of the quarter games you sometimes find in American carnivals. The concept is to push a stack of goodies over a ledge into a bin that you open during play. Like many well-designed, profitable, and therefore infuriating prize games, the game provides an illusion […]

South Korea

Ejected from Meerkat and Friends

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Cat cafes are nothing new in Tokyo and have existed since at least the turn of the century. We’ve visited a couple of them. The concept has also grown popular in a number of other large East Asian cities. In terms of uniqueness as a business model, it’s possible that cat cafes have become a […]

Mongolia

Oceans of Green, Fields of Lavender

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Sometimes pictures don’t fully communicate the enormity of a landscape… a barren desert, an isolated island in open ocean, jagged mountaintops in a cascade to the horizon. The Mongolian steppe is another such place. The simplicity of grasslands, smooth and undulating like gentle waves into the distance, is an odd landscape to take in. The […]

Singapore

D-List Theme Parks Near Singapore

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This was our first trip travelling solo with our niece, who’s now six. Taiwan/Tokyo tested the waters with her parents accompanying. This was just us and Emma. It was primarily a week-long trip to Singapore over her spring break. We did take the opportunity to do a day trip into Puteri Harbor, Malaysia which was…. […]

Japan

Tokyo For The Kindergarten Set

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Once again, catching up on the last trip, right before we head out on another. This is a picture gallery from a family trip to Tokyo last fall. After touring Taipei for a few days, we spent about a week in Tokyo. As usual… long aimless days and no time to post any updates. The […]

Taiwan

Mainlander Finishing School

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A friend once told me that “if you wish China was more like Japan, you’d really like Taiwan.” I won’t attempt to touch on the myriad of problems with that statement, but I think I know now a bit of what he meant. Our first stop on this little two week family trip is in […]

Australia

Just Like The Last One

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Hopefully this doesn’t become a habit… Here we are about to take off on another trip, and I never got around to updating a post for the last couple days of our Australia visit. Anyhow, better late than never.

Tonga

Sabbath Ghost Town in Tonga

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Our last island stop for this trip is a visit to the main island of Tongatapu in Tonga. While a Sunday on this island is certainly a surreal and interesting experience, it is also, by most holiday metrics, a wasted day. No normal restaurants, no shopping, no transport, no tours. Nothing. Thankfully, we had a […]

Fiji

Interlopers on Robinson Crusoe Island

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Our flight from Vanuatu brought us into Fiji in the early evening and we opted to overnight at a fairly modest airport resort before transiting to our private island resort the next morning. We stayed overnight at the “TokaToka”, which seemed to evoke like a low-priced Disney Polynesian Resort. The place is literally across the […]

Vanuatu

Crashing a Cargo Cult Revival

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Active volcanoes, remote beaches, and WWII-era airstrip-revering cults… that’s what we signed up with a stop in Vanuatu. Several days here mostly delivered on all of the above, along with a few nice surprises.

Australia

Tiptoeing On The Edge of Restricted Airspace

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Prior to some island-hopping in the South Pacific, we had a couple days transiting through Sydney and Brisbane. Our original plan was to connect through Brisbane and spend a couple nights in The Solomon Islands. Unfortunately, weather delays in Brisbane had us overnight there and rearrange the next leg of the trip. If you’re planning […]

Japan

The Hottest Collectible Balls of Early 2017

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Ok look… better late than never on this post. We’re about to start on a new trip, so, you know, now is the time to finish posting from the last one. Seriously though, I’ve said it before, and it’s still true: Every time we visit Japan we end up staying in smaller and smaller areas […]