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Articles Categorized Travel

MADAGASCAR LEMURS

Nosy Be is an island off the northwest coast of Madagascar Island, the fourth largest island in the world. There are two major industries on Nosy Be: Ylang-Ylang plantations and tourism. Ylang-ylang is a flower valued for its essential oils that provide a key ingredient in production of perfumes and essential oil. Its intense fragrance

GORILLA TREKKING IN RWANDA

According to Skilled Adventurer, trekking is a “long arduous journey, typically on foot” that can test your ability and sanity. Hiking, on the other hand, is walking a long distance, usually on trails or roads. Neither involve safari vehicles that deposit visitors at the end of the road and fade from sight, seemingly forever. I

DO YOU WANT TO SEE A TIGER? COME TO RANTHAMBORE

If you want to see the elusive tiger, Ranthambore National Park and Tiger Reserve is a good place to look.  Deer are the primary source of food for tigers, and at Ranthambore there are plenty of deer to choose from. The spotted Axis deer are called cheetah in Hindi because cheetah means spots. Sambar deer

“I Love Cebu” Is an Accurate Song

The second stop on my recent wildlife safari was Cebu Province in the Central Visayan region of the Philippines. From the air, the approach to Mactan Island reveals a sizable city and busy harbor. The name Mactan evolved from Mangatang, meaning pirate. Once upon a time, islanders preyed on passing ships. The pirates are long

SAFARI IN MAASAI MARA, KENYA

The most magical location of my wildlife safari was the Maasai Mara National Reserve, a savanna wilderness in southwest Kenya that borders on the Serengeti in Tanzania. The site in the Great Rift Valley features grassy plains and rolling hills crossed by the Mara and Talek Rivers. The famous migration of wildebeests from the Serengeti

SNOW MONKEYS & CHERRY BLOSSOMS IN JAPAN

Just before the world turned upside down, I returned from an incredible adventure that took me to wildlife sanctuaries at different sites around the world. The first stop was Japan where I was able to visit the surprisingly famous Snow Monkeys and enjoy an early viewing of cherry blossoms. The extremes of winter and spring

Whitby: The West Cliff & Beyond

There’s one last sight to see before crossing the Swing Bridge to the West Side of Whitby. If you take a left before crossing the bridge, you’ll be on Grape Lane, a narrow thoroughfare of some interest. Some say Grape Lane was known of Grope Lane, a place where prostitutes plied their trade among the

The Albert Memorial

At the edge of Kensington Gardens on the boundary to Hyde Park stands the Albert Memorial, an incongruous and massive example of the Gothic Revival Style popular during the Victorian Age. The structure, built primarily by public subscription, honored Victoria’s consort, a man without a clear portfolio now credited with bringing the monarchy into the

Kensington Palace: The First Occupants

For more years than I’m going to mention, I’ve stayed in the Kensington area of London when I travel for my urban fix and British Library research. If you’re familiar with London’s layout, you’ll quickly point out that the library is on the other side of the city. Thankfully, it’s a quick trip on The

Cultural Japan: Matsue Castle & the Village of Shirakawa-go

Matsue Castle is one of 12 original castles in Japan. I, of course, had to visit it. The castle is, more accurately, the castle keep, a structure built for fighting rather than luxurious living. That took place in a palace, now long gone. Like castles everywhere, Matsue Castle is built at a high elevation. The