In June / July we made a 21-day trip to the Lesser Sunda Islands; Flores, Rinca, Komodo, Bali and Lombok. A very nice trip, Flores has a beautiful nature and is not yet commercial. Rinca and Komodo are known for the Komodo dragons living there. A great experience to see / photograph them from a short distance. Kuta on Bali is very touristy, nevertheless the stay was nice. On Lombok, we made a 1-day trip, but mostly we relaxed / enjoyed.
Have fun viewing a selection of photographs made by me.
In October / November we made a 15-day tour through a number of nature parks in the north-east of South Africa. Although we spotted fewer animals than in Kenya and / or Tanzania, we have enjoyed the beautiful nature in general and the White rhinoceros in particular. I have also been able to photograph a large number of birds again.
I hope you enjoy the small selection I have placed.
A vacation in Sri Lanka has been on our list for a while. In September we made a trip of three weeks. We enjoyed the mix of culture, nature and relaxing and not to forget the delicious food and the friendly people. We visited beautiful and very ancient temples, but the safaris through the various national parks (NP) have made a deep impression on us. Highlights were the Dambulla cave temples, the safari in the bird-rich Kandula NP and the encounter with leopards during the safari through the Yala NP, which was partially open.
Have fun watching the photos.
We went to Rome in the week before Easter. Due to the early flight and the late flight back we had almost 5 full days to visit the places of interest. In addition to the obvious tourist attractions, we have also been in many “ordinary” churches. Behind mostly simple facades appeared to be true artworks inside.
I hope you enjoy the selection of the pictures.
After two weeks traveling through Vietnam, we went to Cambodia. In Phnom Penh we started with a visit to the truly spectacular royal palace. This was in great contrast to the visit to the infamous Tuol Sleng prison and the Killing Fields. Via Battambang where we visited a floating village, we traveled to Siem Reap. There lies the purpose of our visit to Cambodia, the Angkor Wat and the other temple complexes, impressive but also very crowded.
Siem Reap itself became very westernized, many bars and restaurants and a lot of young tourists. Still it was nice for a few days.
Vietnam stood for a while on our list of countries that we wanted to visit. We chose a combination with Cambodia because visiting the Angkor Wat was also high on our list. After three days in Singapore, we flew fresh to Hanoi and there we started out our tour. Highlights were the various villages we visited, staying and spending the night on a ship in Halong Bay, the Imperial City in Hue, Hoi An and boat trips on the Mekong River. Furthermore, the beautifully decorated palaces and temples we visited. But the traffic in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) will stay with us too. There are millions of mopeds / motorcycles driving criss-cross thru these cities. We enjoyed the friendly people and the nice food.
What struck me was that I only saw a few birds and then only from a distance.
Before we started a tour through Vietnam and Cambodia, we first went to Singapore for 3 days to acclimatize.
Singapore is a delightful city to stay, although there is more litter now, it remains a very neat city. Especially Boat Quay and Clarke Quay are very pleasant areas with many restaurants and terraces. Fortunately, we were in a hotel nearby.
We spent the last two weeks of the summer season in Parga. It was a pleasant reunion and we enjoyed the Greeks and the food. The weather was delicious, better than we hoped for. We visited the Zagora National Park with a rental car, where old bridges can be admired. We saw a number of places we had also visited in 2006, like the Archeron River. We made a nice walk along the banks.
All in all, we enjoyed it. I’ve placed a small selection of the many pictures we took.
At the beginning of May we went to Lesbos for 2 weeks, together with a married couple, the husband is a good photographer and also a bird lover. You’re almost too late for the bird migration to the north, but you are more likely to have good weather. After relaxing a day and exploring the island, the men spotted birds the next two days from 6 am to 12 noon. Then all together for lunch and exploring the island, the same the next day. Then again two mornings of birdwatching and another day of exploring the island and so on it went. I spotted 71 different birds and took fairly decent photos of 54 of them.My favorite images are those of the Stilt, the Little Bittern and the Kruper’s Nuthatch.
I’ve placed a very small selection of the many pictures.
In February / March we made a trip through northern India, called “Tigers and Palaces”. Both subjects in the name were correct. We visited beautiful palaces as well as fortresses and temples. It surprised us that they were able to create such beautiful and richly decorated buildings in those days. We were warned that the actual spotting of a tiger in one of the many National Parks was a rarity, however, we got to see tigers on 4 of the 7 safaris! Very bizarre to see such a beautiful animal just next to the safari jeep. We spotted many other animals and birds. I was able to photograph as many as 76 different birds! It was difficult to make a selection from all the photos.