Brimstone Hill, St Kitts – 1

The Federation of St Kitts and Nevis is a long name for the smallest country in the Americas both in size and population. Although it’s small in stature St Kitts and Nevis was forged by some mighty historical factors: Empire-building, the horrors of slavery, the burgeoning sugar cane industry, and the American War of Independence.Continue reading “Brimstone Hill, St Kitts – 1”

Lake Bled – 2

My travelling companion and I arrived on the shore of Lake Bled near the Castle Baths in mid-afternoon with plenty of time, we thought, to visit the church and ring the bell. Unless you swim, the only way of getting to the island is by gondola, which normally holds around 16 people. Gondoliers ferry peopleContinue reading “Lake Bled – 2”

Lake Bled – 1

Visit the only real island in Slovenia,” said the tourist information brochure, “and ring the wishing bell in the church”. Like kissing the Blarney Stone in Ireland, it sounded very touristy, but was something that a visitor just has to do. The island in question, Blejski Otok, is in Lake Bled. The forested slopes aroundContinue reading “Lake Bled – 1”

Plitvice Lakes – 5

Extract from Julian’s Journeys The Plitvice Lakes (Plitvicka jezera) are one of Croatia’s most popular tourist attractions. An amazing natural phenomenon and no more than 4000 years old, Plitvice is a protected UNESCO world natural heritage site. They were declared a national park in 1949 and accepted as a World Heritage site in 1979. DueContinue reading “Plitvice Lakes – 5”

Trakai – 4

The town of Trakai has a lot of colourful wooden houses and most belong to the Kairim who practice a branch of Judaism. Their plain temple, called a Kenesa, is on the main street and is open for visitors. The Kairim are thought to be descended from another people called The Khazars, who lived betweenContinue reading “Trakai – 4”

Trakai Castle – 3

The walkways across the lake are well maintained and reassuringly sturdy. On the small island between the walkways was a man with an accordion playing small snatches from an international repertoire. I think he looked at the tourists heading towards him, assessed where they were from, and then played a tune associated with that country.Continue reading “Trakai Castle – 3”

Malta – 3

Large stones, salt and topsoil have all been postulated as the cargo. The stones might have been the ones used to build the megalithic temples found over the islands and therefore would have had the weight necessary to scrape such channels in the rock, though it is difficult to imagine stones weighing 50 tons beingContinue reading “Malta – 3”

Plitvice Lakes – 2

Extract from Julian’s Journeys The heavy rains of the previous days meant that the streams between the lakes were in full spate and the water was really rushing under some of the wooden walkways between the lakes. It also meant that the waterfalls were spectacular, especially the ones that we came across next, the 10Continue reading “Plitvice Lakes – 2”

Trakai Castle – 2

At first view from the lakeside the castle appeared to be more than the official 500 metres away across the lake. However, I was soon distracted by sail boats, people thrashing about in small green rowing boats and picnickers by the path. There were vendors selling amber jewellery, ice creams, and postcards. The stall andContinue reading “Trakai Castle – 2”

Malta – 2

At different sites over the two main islands and in the surrounding waters are found some man-made features which have been given the name ‘cart ruts’, largely because the first visitors to discover them believed they had been worn by a cart. Their most famous site is at Clapham Junction, named after Britain’s busiest railwayContinue reading “Malta – 2”