September - 2015
Route des Grandes Alpes
Took two weeks off work the ride the campervan to, along and over some of the best mountainroads France has to over. Plenty of sunshine, swimming, croissants, vin et joi de vivre ensued.
December 15 - 2014
Morocco #2
Driving away from the desert, into the mountains and finally towards the coast and back north towards Fes. Enjoying whatever Morocco has to offer on the way. Back in Fes now - waved Mandy goodbye at the airport yesterday - and heavily contemplating what to do next while the rain is once again ticking on the medina rooftops of this city.
December 05 - 2014
First days in Morocco
Ironically it took me all the way into Morocco before I finally had to endure rainy cycling days. And heavy ones at that. I crossed the Med to Spanish Ceuta, where I could stay with the family of the very friendly Kunal, whom I've met earlier in Córdoba. The next day I set off to Chefchaouen and enjoyed perhaps five minutes of dry spells between the thunderstorms all together throughout the whole day. The coldest I've been on this trip sofar. The next day wasn't much better. Only upsides on both these days; the spontaneous invititations by local people living and working on the roadside to join their tangines and lunches. After three days of cycling I got into the major city of Fes, where I'd await the arrival of Mandy. Together we will travel the mountains and desert of inland Morocco for the next two weeks.
November 30 - 2014
In this southernmost province of Spain I finally resorted to taking some more off days. Visiting the ancient cities of Granada, Córdoba, Sevilla and Cádiz, I took at least one full extra day in each city to see some sights, rest my body and come to my senses. Except for the fairly dull rides between Córdoba, Sevilla and Cádiz most days would take me through national parks and across small Andalucian villages, mostly devoid of tourists. With some considerate planning every now and then, I managed to refrain from cycling in any mentioning worthy rain every single day so far and I consider myself ridiculously fortunate for that. All that would change for the worse upon crossing the Mediterranean into Morocco though. More on that later.
November 14 - 2014
All Who Wander Are Not Lost
Of the awake moments of the first three weeks of my bicycle trip basically 90% consisted of either cycling or getting the bicycle sorted and 10% of eating food and finding some sort of accomodation. The remainder went to the regular sightseeing. I worked my way through Belgium, down central France - along the Rhone eventually - following the mediterranean shoreline all the way into Spain. Sticking to the Spanish costa's except for the border crossing, working my way down to Valencia from where I headed inland, into the mountains and towards Andalusia. For the record; I'm keeping track of my progress on a map, which can easily be accessed by - who would've guessed? - clicking MAP in that grey menu on your left.
July 08 - 2014
Beach Bash
Put together a couple clips from Vladdie's Birthday party at the beach. Nothing too fancy.
June 21 - 2014
I went sailing with my parents and shot this little video in the process of getting reacquinted with working in Adobe Premiere. In the meantime I'm trying to put together some material I shot while travelling. I hope to be able to put that up online sometime before never.
May 14 - 2014
Last weeks
It took a while for me to upload this handful of pictures. After the Himalayan trek I stuck around in Kathmandu, waiting for my flight, for another week and then headed back to one of the favourite destinations in Thailand; Koh Chang Noi. I stayed here for 10 days at exactly the same place we stayed in december. Nothing but reading, swimming, eating delicious food and drinking the ocassional beer. Now I've been back in Holland for a good three weeks, of which two consisted of working full time. Busy meeting up people, moving all my material belongings - actually less than a carload - around, finding temporarily housing etc. It's good to be back, but even better to start looking forward again.
March 30 - 2014
Everest Base CAMP Trek
When I arrived in Kathmandu I didn't exactly know what I was going to do in Nepal. It took me a couple of days to figure out I wanted to do the classic Everest Base Camp trek and then some more to obtain all the necessary permits, visa extensions, maps and gear. Instead of flying to (and back out from) Lukla - which is over halfway on the trek - I decided to take a bus to Jiri and walk from there. It's safer and cheaper and makes for a good acclimatization and preparation period to the higher altitude. In the bus from Kathmandu to Jiri I met the German Stephan who happened to have more or less the same plan and we ended up walking together for 27 days. No meat, beer, wi-fi and shower for almost a month didn't exactly sound like a good time at first, but in the end this trek turned out to be one of the definite highlights of the whole trip.
February 21 - 2014
Arriving at Myitkyina I took a four day boatride down the Ayeyarwaddy river towards Katha (the town on which George Orwell his Burmese Days is based), jumping ship at Sinbo, Bhamo and Shwegu. From Katha three busses - passing through Monywa and Pakokku - brought me to the magical temple filled plains of Bagan where I hung around for three days (check the map to make some more sense of all of this). A last overnight bus brought me to the former capital of Yangon from where I caught my plane to Kuala Lumpur the next day. Thirty-hours in KL give me just enough time to do my laundry, catch up on some internet stuff and more importantly, sleep, before I take the next flight to Kathmandu, Nepal. Crazy as it may sound, I'm looking forward to the cold and the snow in the Himalayas.
February 14 - 2014
From Kalaw we made a three day trek to the beautiful Inle Lake. Stuck around for two and a half days and then ventured on to Hsi-Paw were we made another two day trek. It was great to get away from the bustle - excessive honking and breakth taking exhaust fumes - of the cities and experience more of the Shan, Pulaung and Lisu tribe cultures in the hills. From Hsi-Paw a scenic trainride brought us to Mandalay where I stayed another two days. After that I said goodbye to my fellow travellers - haven't spent a day on my own in Myanmar yet - and took a 22 hour trainride to the north of Myanmar, Myitkyina - Kachin State. That place will be the starting point of a mulitple day boat ride down to Ayeyarwaddy river.
February 4 - 2014
One of my main goals on this trip was to see Myanmar and sofar it does not disappoint. After succesfully crossing the Mae Sot - Myawaddy border over land I met up with Frank and spent the first week with him visiting the beautiful surroundings near Hpa-An, the Golden Rock at Kyaitko, the sights at Bago and finally the hikers hang-out Kalaw. The people here are in general incredibly nice and helpful and all of them carry big smiles on their faces. A world of difference compared to Thailand; Myanmar only gets to see 300,000 tourists a year whereas an estimated 14,000,000 visit Thailand yearly.
January 23 - 2014
Our guesthouse near Sopping was called Cave Lodge. As the name implies there are a lot of caves nearby and on one day six of us set out to trek and see three of these caves. With a guide of course. I've seen quite a lot of caves by now and in all honesty I cannot say these were the most impressive - there are supposed to be way more impressive caves a further away from the lodge -. It was really good to explore some caves without concrete paths and stairways and music and artificial coloured lighting though. All we had for lighting were our own headlights and that makes the whole experience a lot more raw and exciting.
January 22 - 2014
From Chiang Rai I travelled on to the popular and relaxing Pai where I hung out for five days. After that I went to visit the Cave Lodge near Soppong - more about that later - and onwards to Mae Hong Son, Mae Sariang and lastly Mae Sot, close to the border with Burma. Tomorrow I will try and see if it is possible to travel over land to central region of Myanmar. Something that is not possible according to the guidebooks, but is however according to newer sources online. We'll see and I'll keep you posted!
January 14 - 2014
At the far end of the northern railway line from Bangkok is the city Chiang Mai. Here I hung around for two days and then took a bus further North to Chiang Rai. Growing tired of all the public transport and declining to go on an organised tour I figured I could explore a bit of nothern Thailand by myself on a motorbike. I left the greater part of my luggage at some guesthouse in Chiang Rai, rented a bike for a week an visited the Puh Chi Fa, Chiang Khong, Chiang Saen, Mae Sai and Mae Salong villages. At first I intended to go to Laos and Cambodia from here but then a fellow traveller I met in Mognolia told me the border to Myanmar in Mae Sot - Western Thailand - recently opened up for tourists and now I am slowly making my way through northwest Thailand over there.
January 03 - 2014
The two weeks leading up to christmas I've spent on the island of Koh Chang; swimming, sunbathing and reading. Last week I've spent travelling from Koh Chang in in the south to Chiang Mai in the north of Thailand, acquiring a Birmese visa in Bangkok on the way. From Bangkok to Chiang Mai I took a train and stopped to visit some sights in Lopburi and Sukhothai.