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Travel HACKTREKS INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL
On-line portfolio for world travellers

2014
Travel Pages Edited by Sam North:- November 2014

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Beautiful Burundi: A Country Less Travelled - Fergus Simpson
After over a decade of civil war and ethnic strife, Burundi is starting to receive a gentle stream of more open-minded travellers.
The Hypochondriac Traveller’s Guide to Ebola - Scott Masson
Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about West Africa’s “Killer Virus”
Cleaning Behind the Ears
Emma Kerss
in Turkey
Ellie and I find ourselves standing at the arched stone entry to an old bathhouse on the corner of a cobblestone alley way somewhere deep in the heart of Istanbul
The Living Desert Experience
I was invited to join what’s known as a ‘Living Desert Experience’ with Charly’s Desert Tours, a Swakopmund-based tour company that specialise in desert adventures
Under the Skin of St Petersburg
Fi McIntyre

I’d been working in St Petersburg as an English teacher for four months when my parents decided it was high time for a visit...
Bohemian Rhapsody
John M. Edwards

JME takes the waters in the Czech Republic’s so-called West Bohemian Spa Triangle in order to spy out the local talent and bathe in the buff
Game Night on the Río Manzanares
Toni Pecchia

I can hear it. At first it scares me a little, because it’s an incredibly primal, torrential sound triumphing over the usual sounds of a big city.
It Began in Zanzibar
Jackie Brinkman

I decided it was time to get out of my comfort zone and see something of the world beyond Denver
How to do The Seychelles on a Budget - Danielle Caldron
The Seychelles can be an affordable holiday destination for solo travelers with the right planning.
Istanbul, (not Constantinople)
Keeley Graham

This time last month I was wandering carefree through the stalls of the sprawling Grand Bazaar in the very centre of Turkey’s coolest city, Istanbul.
The George Enescu Music Festival - Romania
Elizabeth Schotten Merklinger

The George Enescu Festival was started in 1958 to honour Enescu, the country's greatest composer, violinist and conductor...
Voodoo, Slaves & White Man's Graves by Tom Coote
Sam North review

If you ever fantasised about flying to West Africa and exploring all its charms - read Voodoo, Slaves and White's Man Graves first. You may well alter your plans.
Help Me, Ronda (Espana)
John M. Edwards

This improbably fantastic cliff-side nest persists on the Quixotic verge of imagination, much like waking up inside a Magic Realism novel
Nightlife in Harar
Justin Dupee

Jesse and I had read that at night wild hyenas come down from the hills and roam within the walled confines of the city
Timelines & Tramroads
Crickhowell Walking Festival

Jane Anderson
“Over there,” our leader announced “you can see Llangorse Lake.  Last year a water-skier was bitten by a pike”.  Silence dropped over the group. 
My Jewish Stories of Africa
Irene Shaland

My husband and I have been traveling the world together for over 30 years, ever-attuned to the Jewish story
Exploring Scandinavia: Reflections and Conversations
Irene Shaland with photos by Alex Shaland

Is the Jewish story of today’s Norway all about young people leaving the country to build their lives elsewhere?
Barcelona
Mathew Sterne

On a rundown street in Barcelona we sit on our balcony and watch the prostitutes go by. Elderly men with walking sticks emerge from their siestas and enjoy the last of the afternoon sun.
Visiting Highclere Castle, aka Downton Abbey
Marija Stajic

If you’re one of the millions of fan of the award-winning Downton Abbey series, a thought of visiting the real castle must have entered your mind once or twice.
'Guided' tour of Marrakech Medina
Eleanor Shelton

I had a sense of impending doom even before I exited the taxi...
Postcard from Ghent
Colin Todhunter

Leaving India on a very early morning flight out of Cochin and arriving in Ghent in Belgium later on the same day. From a hot December in South India to zero degrees in Europe in a mere 12 hours.
Mermaids, Coffee and Hash
Colin Todhunter

Never go to Copenhagen! If you hate great architecture, never visit. If you despise lovely canals, don’t bother
Thrust and Struggle:
Easy in Copenhagen
Colin Todhunter

The Vesterbro area of the city lies just behind the main railway station. It may play host to prostitution and illicit drug selling, but it is also an up and coming residential location. It’s a place on the rise.



Majuli: The Assamese Wonder Explored - Sean Lee
Willing to explore the least charted corners of the world? You could head for Assam’s Majuli (India) this year.
Visiting Japan
Fred C Wilson 111

Meeting up with pen-pals in Tokyo
Serene Destinations in Australia
Stacy Eva

Australia is a standout amongst the most lovely nations on the planet and is likewise hailed a significant destination.
Last Call for Mercy
Michael Britton

Hsuen frightens me. I guess it is the way she takes care of the rat problem in the Step Down Guesthouse in Kuala Lumpur.
Discover Manila - A City full of Suprises - Sean Lee
Manila is changing and welcoming visitors from across the globe.
The Paua and the Glory
John M. Edwards

New Zealand’s Prized Sea Snails
A lifetime under a flyover - The invisible life of the Mumbai homeless - Shivaji Das
There are slums in Mumbai and then there are slums, and then there are the homeless, a word that seems too benign for their condition.
Bali
Fred C Wilson 111

I’ve studied up on Bali; it’s all good. The scenery, indigenous art galleries, Hindu temples laden with ancient artifacts, the spicy foods, exotic markets and the wonderful folks who make up this beautiful place
Tagaytay - Paradise Found
Fred C. Wilson III 

Philippine resort city of Tagaytay is as close as you can get to a paradise on Earth. The place is a virtual Shangri La.
Moving to the Philippines?
Fred C Wilson 111 on life in Paradise

There are many advantages to living in the economically thriving Philippines.

Viet Nam
Fred C. Wilson III

Ho Chi Minh City, like Manila on the other side of the South China Sea, is a ‘young’ city; a city of ‘20 Somethings.’
Derelict Dhows - Mandvi, India
Michael Britton

Barmer, a three hour local bus ride south of Jaisalmar, is the starting point of a painting journey around the Western rim of India's Gujarat State bordering the Arabian Sea.
Spanking The Children of Paradise
Michael Britton

I never saw a body washed up on a beach before. From a distance he looked to be enjoying the waves lapping over him as you or I would enjoy laying in the surf on a hot afternoon.
Indian Twister
Evan Denno

To fit twenty-one people (including two small children and a baby) into one Range Rover knock off, first forget about seating; it's about volume.
Hack, Slit, Squeal: Immunity in Georgetown, Chennai
Colin Todhunter

Hack, slit, slice. Butchery in Georgetown. Peeled, pink goat carcases in fly-ridden, one-room shops
Thai Street Food
John M. Edwards

As someone used to eating Thai food in New York City...I was blown away when I tasted real Siamese fare for the first time
The Industrious Trishaw Driver
John M Edwards

At the Sultan’s Kraton in Yogyakarta, Java, Indonesia, I stood face to face with “The Great Man”--the Sultan himself ...
Going Local in Thailand
The northeast of Thailand – called “Isan” by the locals – is the largest of the main regions of Thailand, yet is visited by only one percent of international travelers...
Huxian farmer paintings of Shaanxi, China - Shivaji Das
Fattened chickens delicately balanced in a bicycle, joyous grandmothers cleaning the ears of laughing grandfathers
All the Tea in China
Tom Clifford

For hours our small bus had been buffeted by nature’s wrath, exposed on Guizhou’s mountain passes and only the dexterity and skill of our driver kept us this side of paradise.
Where Cows & Princesses Glide through Mud - Colin Todhunter
Look up, but certainly look down as well. Just watch your step. There are a million stones to negotiate and a thousand bits of loose concrete.

Summer of Chamber Music in Ottawa
Elizabeth Schotten Merklinger

For four weeks every summer, Ottawa is transformed into a magical setting for about one hundred and fifty chamber music concerts.
Patagonia – The Road to Insanity

Olivier Guiberteau

A bus trip would take forty-eight hours and likely boredom, possible rectal damage, and potential insanity – but also, a great adventure.
A Panamanian Experience
Norman Wolfer

Every country seems to have wonderful things to offer along with the idiosyncrasies that take away from paradise.  Panama is no exception
Daytrip to Saskatoon
Habeeb and Muna Salloum

“Welcome to Saskatoon the ‘Paris of the prairies’”, the guide’s voice thundered through the tour bus. He continued, “Saskatoon is magic!"
Pittsburgh Re-Born
Habeeb Salloum

"Did you see the new Pittsburgh? It’s awesome!
Antiguan Retreat: Moving Past the Honeymoon Phase
Amy Siqveland

Though I’m not one to usually laze around on the beach, when I was informed that I had a won a “free trip” to a “wellness sanctuary” in Antigua, I was ecstatic to be able to defrost.
Sooke Harbour House:
Dining On Vancouver Island
John M. Edwards

I felt like a character out of “Finding Nemo” as I immersed myself in the Philip’s octopuses’ garden with no shade

San Francisco
Fred C. Wilson III

San Francisco has an exotic quality about it compared to your average American city with its lookalike brownstone dwellings
Chicago
Fred W Wilson

This city isn’t for the weak and faint of heart. You slip up it can and will eat you alive.
Dog Days by Andrew Thompson
Tales From an American Road Trip

Truth be told, anyone even thinking about taking a trip around American on a Discovery Pass should read this and hire a car immediately.

The Henry Doorly Zoo
Marianne de Nazareth

Two warm days in the middle of winter in Omaha? There was no way we were going to waste them. So off we went to the Henry Doorly Zoo, which according to its credits, it is the best zoo in the world
I left my heart-shaped box in San Francisco
John M. Edwards

For a city known for its liberal viewpoint and gay lifestyle, its earthquakes and trollycars, this epiphanic epicenter is all about desire and longing.
Cuba
Milos Radulovic

I've sort of stumbled into Cuba, to be honest. I didn't plan to have my vacation there, at all, from the start
Museums & Churches of Quebec
Fred C Wilson III

I’ve always wanted to visit our neighbor to the north. At long last I was going to see Canada
Astro Poboys
John M Edwards

John discovers New Orleans unique cuisine to be out of this world, not just Creole and Cajun clichés (“Gumbo” and “Jambalaya”), but also, well, nothing beats an Oyster Poboy!
Omaha Dining
Marianne de Nazareth

Never thought the experience of eating out in Omaha, USA could be such fun
Austin - Texas
Marianne de Nazareth

The carousel was a razzle dazzle set of Gibson Guitars painted in wonderful hippie colours as a welcome to us into Austin, Texas.
Eating Indian at Indian Oven Nebraska, Omaha
Marianne de Nazareth
It's much more Indian than the paisley 'tikka' on the I of the logo of the name Indian Oven, or the antique artefacts that grace its sweeping walls.
Mackinac Island
Briana Newcomb

Big blue eyes, short small body, I stood at the dock of the ferry as everyone unloaded. I looked at the beauty I was about to enter.
Come to Winnipeg Folk Fest 2014
- Lizzie Clarke

Artists and bands come from all over the world to perform on eight stages scattered across the festival site
Mission to Mexico
Fred C. Wilson III

I was invited to come to Mexico to assist Fr. John Calgaro or Padre Juan as he’s affectionately called by his large flock of 35,000 souls with his religious mission
Ecuador - a guide
Fred C. Wilson III

You may never want to return to your country of origin once you visit Ecuador
Postcard from Cahuita
John M. Edwards

I stood in a state of stupefaction, eavesdropping on a few random undocumented locals who looked like they were engaging in a slapping fight—except with warm smiles of nonrecognition on their faces, maybe ganja buzzes.
Pennsylvanian Dutch
John M Edwards

When my friend arrived I began brainstorming for something different to do, and I decided on a car trip to the Pennsylvania Dutch Country.

*Prince Christian Sound by Bonnie Devet: awarded “notable essay." in The Best American Essays 2014 series (ed. by John Sullivan) published by Houghton Mifflin

© Hackwriters 1999-2014 - the independent writer's magazine - all rights reserved
All comments by Hacktreks writers are their own opinions and are always informed by staying in the places they visit. Hackwriters accepts no responsibillities for the accuracy of their observations and or comments.

John M Edwards wins 5 NATJA awards for his contributions to Hackwriters in 2013
Sojourn in Sopron wins Silver / Montezuma's Revenge wins Bronze