The “civilized” wilderness of Europe

Europe is many things, but one thing that is consistent across almost all of the European countries is the general approach to tolerance.  Good, mature behaviour is recognised, and rewarded with few limitations or rules.  The  Europeans intrinsically get this. And one area where this all blends together for Europeans is camping.  This article talks about “wild” camping:  pitching your…

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From Alto Cedro I go to Marcané

If you’re a music fan, then you certainly must know of the Buena Vista Social Club, 1999 documentary film directed by Wim Wenders. The film follows renowned guitarist Ry Cooder and his son, Joachim, as they travel to Cuba and assemble a group of the country’s finest musicians to record an album. But, even if you know the film, you may…

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Happy July!

It’s always good to think ahead, when you can.  And while you’re enjoying the summer sun, there are probably a dozen or more items on your list that you’re ignoring / forgetting. Well, let us give you a little prod to recommend that you start looking into your winter holidays now.  Chances are good that resorts, hotels, cars and flights…

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It wasn’t too long ago…

Sometimes, we don’t realise how lucky we are. If you’re not familiar with this story, prepare to be amazed.  Kowloon Walled City was an ungoverned and densely populated de jure Chinese enclave within the boundaries of Kowloon City, British Hong Kong. Originally a Chinese military fort, the walled city became an enclave after the New Territories were leased to the…

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They walk among us

Do you fully recognise that “they are among us?”  Do you fashion yourself as an extraterrestrial hunter?  Do you have the knowledge, desire and hardware to search for them? The US Pentagon says there’s no explanation for “unidentified aerial phenomenon” detected by pilots over the years. But scientists use tools such as the SETI Allen Telescope to research the possibility…

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First viewer will buy! Don’t wait!

The electric interwebs are full of articles and videos about failed attempts on a grand scale.  We know that there was thought and planning put into these – there had to be.  But, in the cases here, the dreams crumbled in a number of different ways.  Rather than ridcule, let’s be glad that we’re able to learn from these examples.…

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Breaking news: Ireland has more than two cities

Ireland is one of the more hip, inclusive, free and charming places in Europe.  When you meet an Irish human, you will inevitably strike up a natural and amiable conversation, no matter the situation.  The Irish – the same as the Australians – are simply like that. Everyone tends to gravitate to Dublin and Belfast – naturally – but when…

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Try not to drool

AirBnB, constant bad press notwithstanding, has created a wonderful new model on how to travel.  Almost everyone wins. VRBO, an Expedia company (and one of our valued affiliate friends,) have taken the model and successfully given AirBnB a run for their money:  in some recent months, they have marched past AirBnB in bookings. But, this post is about something similar,…

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Do good, feel good UNESCO style

This is a simple, but very important request.  For those of us who are fortunate enough to travel, this should almost be mandatory. UNESCO has created the Sustainable Tourism Pledge. The pledge takes an industry-first approach to environmental and cultural protection, requiring hotel operators to introduce firm measures to eliminate single-use plastics and promote local culture. The intention is to…

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Hey, bungalow thrill

“If looks could thrill it would have been us instead of him”  All the children sing. These looks will thrill – at Reserva Alecrim EcoSuite & Glamping in Portugal. The properties, the views, the surroundings, the location – wow!  And the bungalows look more like dwellings on the moon. Set by a lake in the Alentejo countryside, Eco Suites Resort offers…

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The Sylvia Path

We’re not sure if Sylvia Plath ever stayed at Sylvia’s Restaurant and Lounge in Vancouver, but we’re sure she would have felt at home. The Sylvia Hotel is a designated heritage building – there aren’t too many of those in Vancouver  – ideally located on English Bay, beside Stanley Park and just 5 minutes from downtown Vancouver. Built in 1912,…

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H2Go!

Nature provides, if we respect her.  And respect is something that seems to be in short supply nowadays.  Automobiles still (mostly) run on 1900’s technology, we still pump fuel out of the ground, which has untold repercussions. The worst thing is that we know better and have the technologies, and yet, we as humans, are slow to adapt. Well, let…

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The centre of the earth

India is a wonderful place full of wonderful people and lots of surprises.  Here’s one. Jatayu Earth Center, also known as Jatayu Nature Park or Jatayu Rock, is a park and tourism centre at Chadayamangalam in Kollam district of Kerala. It stands at an altitude of 350m above the mean sea level. Jatayu Nature Park holds the distinction of having…

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The menace of Venice

Venice in peril.  If it’s ancient foundations crumbling, and literal hoards of tourists aren’t troubling enough, Venice is now being genuinely threatened by the gargantuan cruise ships that pull up to the ancient city. So much so, that UNESCO has put Venice on its endangered list unless Italy permanently banned cruise ships from docking in the world heritage site.   And…

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But, will we have enough extension cords?

Mother earth is heating up – dangerously – but so is the race to enable humans and animals to live in a world that will not burn to a crisp, like it seems now.  We have the brains and the technology, but our will needs a kick in the pants. Fortunately, more and more evidence of green thinking appears everyday. …

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You’re a space cadet

This sounds like fun, but, most importantly, has a very good intent at its heart. You can win two seats on one of the first Virgin Galactic flights to space.  Sir Richard Branson is putting his money and his spaceship where his mouth is. Here’s what’s you can look forward to: Make history as you both live out your astronaut…

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Hot, hot … rot

Even if you’re a climate denier, you can’t deny that the earth is sending all sorts of messages to us.  Read the news – we don’t need to explain it here. The National Geographic has been following this for a long time.  They say that weather and climate patterns around the world are already shifting because of human-caused climate change. …

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Niihau know-how

It’s hard to believe that just seventeen miles from the seaside resorts of Kauai island, there is a tiny stretch of land that has remained as it was since the days of early Hawaii. For Kauai citizens, the image of Niihau island rising from the horizon is  a familiar one, though most will never set foot on its shores. For…

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Tash Rabat. How about that?

Do you sometimes feel like you want to go away and stay away? Well, you’ll be glad to know that, as always, we here at Matouring have solutions for you.  Near or far, we have solutions at our fingertips and are eager to share them with you. May we present  the Tash Rabat Caravanserai in Kyrgyzstan?  If you’re not fully…

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How low can low go?

If you’ve spent any time reading about The Netherlands, you’ll know that the geniuses there have done amazing things in order for the country to keep its head above water. And that hasn’t been completely recent activity:  they’ve been at it for centuries, and they’ve learned a lot in the process. The video below goes into some detail about all…

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