Try again

I drive by this strange signpost everyday on my way to work. I think someone needs to rethink this one. Kids should never be for sale!

Look Kids for Sale

1 comment June 23rd, 2007

Belly Dancing in Istanbul

We went to Istanbul a few years ago over the Valentine’s day weekend. February in Istanbul…it’s freakin’ cold! It’s a beautiful city and the Turks were very friendly and helpful bar the usual 1 or 2 locals anywhere you go in the world who try to rip you off or take you for a ride. That’s exactly what a cab driver did there so be careful with those crazy cabbies in their shitty little yellow cabs.

There’s quite a bit to see there,especially in the Old Town where the Mosques, Ayia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace and other attractions are really fascinating. There’s so much history there. The apple tea, for tourists, is also quite nice when it’s cold out.

We took a boat ride along the Bosphorus. It wasn’t the most exciting thing in the world but it was kind of fun to see the nice palaces and buildings along the shoreline of a famous waterway. It’s worth doing if you are in Istanbul for a few days.

While there we also went to a belly dancing evening which was good fun. The dancers were clearly interested in the tourists from the richer nations as the American and Brit were constantly offered to come on stage and paid more attention to than we were. It’s for the tip at the end you see. Might be bigger, might not. Anyway, they fed us and danced for us and it was quite a nice evening. At the end though, the place turned into a strip club. Sitting there with my would-be wife, a waiter came to me after the show with a “free” entry card to the upstairs strip club. Dude, I’m attached or does that not bother you?? No big deal, we just laughed it off and even more so as we left when we realised the belly dancers were also the strippers. 🙂

Two jobs eh!

Go to Istanbul, it’s a great city!

June 15th, 2007

Warmer and Warmer

We watched An Inconvenient truth the other day. Al Gore really does get his point across well. He’s a great orator with a great great great yet worrying movie under his belt now.

It’s a bit of a depressing topic unfortunately, wasting away our lovely little planet, but it’s also one that needs addressing pronto. It also highlights that if WE work together we can really do something good for nature, for once. What’s really good about the movie is the way they get the message across in an educational yet interesting fashion. It could have been the driest movie ever, but it wasn’t, it was gripping and interesting throughout.

We as humans are nothing short of a plague of locusts really. We plunder, burn, eat and destroy pretty much anything we can get our hands on. Most of the time to make a quick buck or two. And now, what’s happening, CO2 is rising so rapidly that the graph Gore shows looks like the Matterhorn. Rising, rising, rising to levels never seen before and with that, all its correlated problems.

So what can we do? We can buy nature friendly products, we can switch that light off when we’re not in the room, buy local products, walk or ride a bicycle more often, make use of public transport more often, group together as a whole to force companies to improve efficiencies and make use of better technologies.

It’s a bit rich coming from me with a 2.8 turbo diesel and a site about traveling but I’m trying, slowly but surely. Everyday, I cut something else out and I give a colleague a ride everyday so that’s good. There’s lots more I can do but I need access to new safer products as does everyone else. And fast!

June 1st, 2007

Amsterdam Sex Shows

We went to Amsterdam a while back and enjoyed what this great Dutch city has to offer. We decided to go to a Live Show one afternoon and proceeded to select one from the many on offer in ther Red Light District.

In terms of price, they aren’t particularly cheap. Given that we were on a budget, it was quite an outlay for us and with the added sales pitch that there were actually 2 parts to the show and that a couple of free drinks would be thrown in as part of the deal, we opened our wallets and succumbed to the lure of lust and all that naughty stuff.

The venue wasn’t all that nice, it was kind of a grimmey bar/theatre with a large stage. The drinks, well actually, the half-drinks were sucked back in about 3 minutes due to their size and the show was sort of interesting, a banana featured, and then some guy got on stage and lay on his back while some ugly broad rode the crap out of him.

Anyway, it was interesting but I wouldn’t do it again. If you haven’t seen one and really want to, go for it. It is an eye-opener and will help you decide whether or not it’s worth the money and all the fuss. I’m sure there are much more interesting ones out there than the one we were party to but the price we paid for this one leads me to believe that a “classy” show is gonna cost you an arm and a leg.

If this post offends you, sorry, but it was interesting and worth writing about.

May 19th, 2007

Learn a Language

Language is always used. It’s one of the best tools in life. Be it French, Spanish, Japanese, German, Turkish, English, Russian or Xhosa. When we communicate orally, we generally use a language unless we just grunt and even then, that could probably constitute a language.

When travelling, languages are always useful. The more you know, the better chance you have of being understood and getting what you are looking for. It’s amazing how many people go abroad on their travels and expect locals to speak their language. You are in their country, the least you could do is at least try and say hello in their language. It’s usually pretty easy in their native tongue. A simple local “hello” will open more doors for you than a brash, “Hey, why don’t you speak my language, look look, I am here, speak my language.

I’ve always tried to learn at least a few basics before going somewhere I don’t speak the language. I speak 3 fluently and can converse and read in 4 more so I enjoy languages. I grew up in a household where 3 different languages could have been spoken at any given time. Before my wife and I went to Istanbul, I forced myself to learn hello, thank you, please, count from 1-10 and a few other useful words in Turkish. It definetely helped, I caught the taxi driver out trying to set his meter to late night tariffs while we were in broad daylight and gave him a piece of my mind in broken Turkish! Felt good.

So why not grow out of that single language mindframe and learn another one? My wife is, she’s busy learning French, good for her. Then Spanish, Italian and Portuguese will come that much easier to her. I’m very proud of her efforts despite the obvious difficulties of learning another language.

So learn another one, go travelling where they speak your newly acquired tool and let that smile on your hosts face make your day brighter.

April 10th, 2007

Wine Tasting in South Africa

The Cape Winelands of South Africa are beautiful. The wines from the region are also excellent.

While in the winelands areas including Stellenbosch, Paarl, Constantia, Swartland, Durbanville and Franschhoek, a popular activity for both locals and residents is to go for a wine tasting or two at many of the top class wine producers. They are usually open to the public during the week, on Saturdays and some on Sundays. For a small fee, you can taste a few wines, whites, reds, ports, champagne – read Cape Classique, sorry, and decide whether or not you want to purchase a bottle or two from the estate itself. The grounds of the estate are often pristine, with mountain settings and great views. Some also have restaurants where you can enjoy a pleasant meal, a bottle of the estate’s finest and good company.

My wife and I go wine tasting occassionally, I don’t taste though cause I am driving 😉 . It’s a lot of fun, a great way to see the beautiful Cape Winelands and savour a glass or two of South Africa’s finest.

The Cape Winelands

March 20th, 2007

Helicopter flight over the Grand Canyon

We recently went to that crazy and popular city called Las Vegas in the desert of Nevada. It’s a fantastic place really, there’s so much to do there besides gambling it’s mind boggling.

One of them is flying over the spectacular Grand Canyon in a helicopter. There’s enough companies who do it and plenty of resellers selling these tours so look around a bit before you book. But seriously, it’s great. You get to fly around in a chopper which is a blast in itself, see the Hoover Dam, fly over the massive Lake Mead, see the spot where Thelma and Louise rode to oblivion and best of all fly over the canyon carved by the Colorado River and maybe even land in it!

It’s such a cool thing to do and the bragging rights will last you a lifetime! If you go to Vegas, how can you possibly give this a miss!

2 comments February 22nd, 2007

Orange River Canoeing

It’s been a while since I’ve last written here so let’s see if I can still type a little bit…

A couple of years back, my wife and I took a little holiday canoeing down the Orange River in South Africa through the Richtersveld. It was to put it simply, amazing. We had such a good time that I would love to do it again. The river is lovely, it flows nicely in the direction your paddling, the water is just the right temperature, the scenery is great, the river banks are comfortable and the night sky is fascinating. We’d recommend this trip to anybody who wants a bit of adventure in Southern Africa. The thing is, be picky about who you go with because it could ruin your experience. If you want to know which company was rubbish, just ask and I will fill you in on them.

Besides that, bring along your camera, plenty of water, some treats, plenty of sunblock, mosquito repellent and something to cover your upper body with like a rash vest so you don’t burn. You’ll have a great time and don’t sweat it, it’s not hard work at all and anybody, under the age of 80, should do it. If you’re 80 and fit, do it, but at your own peril!

Do it do it do it!

February 8th, 2007

Racing through the desert to Dakar

One of the coolest races in the world is taking place currently. The Dakar Rallye. It’s a fantastic race with some real tough cookies competing against each other through some of the ruggedest and least forgiving terrain in the world. It’s really worth having a look at the mean machines and racers giving the race a go –

I use to dream of competing in this race, not sure it will ever happen, but maybe one day, dreams do come true…Now to find the funding… 🙂

January 12th, 2007

Help the Community

This site has been going for a while now, in fact, over 5 years and is still going strong. Thanks to all of those who visit, contribute and make suggestions.

I just wanted to point out that if you happen to come across something inaccurate or incorrect on the site, let us know. If we are wrong then clearly we made a mistake and are spreading disinformation which is unhelpful and that’s exactly what we want to avoid.

That brings me to my next point. A while ago I was trawling search results involving this site and came across an entry by some dude in Spain who said Travelcreek was spreading a load of bullocks about this or that part of Spain. That’s exactly the attitude that will get you nowhere fast. Instead of pointing out the error to us and thus enhancing the site and helping people, he just decided to write a blog entry and be just plain nasty. How useful is that? Not very at all!

So basically, please let us know about our errors that way everyone can enjoy their holiday to the max!

Happy Holidays!

December 20th, 2006

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