Algeria

Impressive Sites in Stunning Settings

Algeria is now the largest country in Africa, gaining the title when Sudan split into North and South.  Much of the country is desert, but the coastal strip and the Atlas Mountains are fertile and – in spring time at least – stunningly green. The territory of what is today Algeria has been the home […]

Colourful Karachi

Vibrant Metropolis on the Arabian Sea

With a population of over 23 million, Karachi is Pakistan’s largest city and financial centre and the capital of the province of Sindh.  It is also the biggest city in the Muslim world. Recently, I had the opportunity to pay a short visit to this vibrant and colourful metropolis.  Having already spent time in India, which […]

2013 – A Personal Retrospective

In this look back at 2013, I wanted to share with you my thoughts about some of the places I visited and why they speak to me.  Some pictures might seem exotic, others less so – but each tells a story. When returning to Oman in spring, I ventured up into the Al Hajar Mountains […]

Skiing in Afghanistan

Spectacular Scenery and a Warm Welcome

Afghanistan is perhaps not the first place that springs to mind when thinking of a winter sports holiday, but when I stumbled across the opportunity to go skiing in the Hindu Kush I knew it was something I had to do. Bamyan, in the centre of the country, is Afghanistan’s skiing base.  Situated several hours’ […]

The Whirling Dervishes of Khartoum

The whirling dervishes of Khartoum are a ‘must see’ for any visitor to North Sudan. Every Friday afternoon, people gather to see the religious ceremony as African tribal rhythms mix with chanting in Arabic.

Nubia

Land of the Black Pharaohs

When I heard that there were more pyramids in North Sudan than in Egypt, I suddenly developed an interest in a country that so far had not been on my radar screen.  It was January 2011 at the Adventure Travel Show in London and pictures of rows of steep-sided pyramids surrounded by honey-coloured sand caught […]

A Visit to the Hermit Kingdom

North Korea is perhaps not the first place many people would think of for a holiday, but if you look beyond the newspaper headlines there is a fascinating country well worth a visit. The Korean peninsula has a long and rich history.  The first kingdom there was founded in 2333 BC.  Others followed and competed […]

The Aral Sea

The Strange Beauty of an Environmental Disaster

The Aral Sea has become synonymous with environmental disaster resulting from human activity. Once the world’s fourth largest lake, it used to stretch some 400km from north to south and 280km from east to west.  Now, only a small part of it remains, the waters that fed it diverted for cotton production.  I had the […]