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BOAC returns to the skies

BOAC returns to the skies

Monday, the 18th February 2019, saw BOAC return to London’s Heathrow Airport and begin service to the following day to New York’s JFK Airport. BOAC (British Overseas Airways Corporation) has not been seen in the skies since 1974 when it merged with BEA (British European Airways) to become British Airways. So why was a BOAC Boeing 747 Jumbo Jet landing at London Heathrow on a dank Monday in February? The clue is in its flight number the following day for the flight to New York JFK. It operated as BA117 which is a British Airways flight designator. British Airways is the latest incarnation of Aircraft Transport and Travel Limited which in August 1919 launched the world’s first daily international scheduled air service between London and Paris. British Airways celebrates its centenary this year. February also sees the 50th anniversary of the first flight…

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Where in the World (337)

Where in the World (337)

All answers were roughly in the correct region of the world but not all identified the city correctly. The domes on the light coloured building in the top right quadrant gave an indication that the city was in the Middle East somewhere. The pale covered building with the tall spike-like top was likened by some to a kebab spit. As a result, Turkey was a country suggested, as was Dubai. Neither were correct. The country is, in fact, Qatar and the city is Doha. Congratulations this week to Todd (@toddunctious), Jackie (@jackiesjourneys), Tim (@timofnewbury) and Dave (@travelling_dave) who all identified the city correctly as Doha, capital of Qatar. The distorted photograph this week is an iconic view of the city that is often seen on guidebooks and on Instagram. This view, taken from numerous different vantage points and under different lighting conditions, has…

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Where in the World (336)

Where in the World (336)

The structure depicted in the distorted image last week is constructed of wood and claims to be the largest wooden structure in the World. It consists of several linked mushroom-shaped structures covering a plaza. Designed by a German architect, built using wood from Finland it graces the centre of a Spanish city. The Parasol Metropole, as it is known, can be found in the Old City of Seville. Congratulations this week to Todd (@toddunctious), Jackie (@jackiesjourneys), Tim (@timofnewbury), Dave (@travelling_dave) and Günther and Ursula (@myVideoMedia) who all identified the city correctly as Seville. The distorted photograph this week is back to a city skyline. The challenge is to identify the city from its very modern architecture. There is a hint as to which part of the world by some of the architecture. Good luck. As usual, you can leave your…

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6 foodie cities of Europe

6 foodie cities of Europe

My favourite foodie cities For me, one of the most exciting things about travelling is sampling the food of different cultures and regions. Towns and cities are some of the best places to sample the local cuisine, not least because there are lots of opportunities in a small area. Some cities have become synonymous with food and I often refer to them as foodie cities. Europe has a huge variety of cultural cuisines. You could travel a whole lifetime and still not experience all that Europe has to offer the foodie. I have selected a few foodie cities that I would recommend as foodie destinations. Lyon, France If Paris is the heart of France then Lyon certainly is its stomach. The late Paul Bocuse, a Lyonnaise chef, did much to put the city on the modern foodie map. His own…

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Kindle and Audible: Books that are not books

Kindle and Audible: Books that are not books

Once upon a time, I used to take along several books to read while on holiday. That was in addition to the country or city guidebook I took along as a reference tool. Then along came the big bad wolf in the guise of the blue and yellow Ryanair and its co-conspirator the vivid orange Easyjet. They reduced our baggage allowance and the size of our permitted luggage so the bulky, heavy books had to go. What would we do without our reading matter and reference tools? Enter the hero from Amazon… the Kindle e-reader (£) and Audible (£), the audiobook subscription service (now also part of the Amazon family). There were others but this post is limited to these two.    Now we could take our books with us in digital format on devices that weighed less than a…

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Six Cycle Friendly Cities of Europe

Six Cycle Friendly Cities of Europe

On Yer Bike; On two Wheels Cycling is a popular, affordable and environmentally friendly way to see a city. In many European cities, it is positively encouraged. City planners are realising the benefits of cycling as a mode of transport and are providing cycle-paths, plenty of parking for bicycles, automated bike hire facilities, smartphone apps and bike-friendly public transport. Not all cities are equal in their provision of cycle-friendly facilities. Many provide facilities aimed solely at the commuter and not the visitor. I have picked out several of Europe’s cities that are best explored on two wheels. Each of the six have excellent facilities and infrastructure specifically aimed at the cyclist. Copenhagen The Danish capital has been at the forefront of making a city cycle-friendly. They have been so successful at it that the word, “Copenhagenization”, defined as urban planning…

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From Gordon’s Travel Shelfie: The Robber of Memories

From Gordon’s Travel Shelfie: The Robber of Memories

The Robber of Memories: A River Journey Through Colombia by Michael Jacobs I had this book on loan from my local library because the title and blurb piqued my interest. It sat unread until it was recalled after several renews. Eventually, I purchased the Kindle version when I found the courage to pick it up and start reading. My father was robbed of his memory as was the author’s own father. At the time of travelling his mother was also suffering from dementia. Even after several years since my father’s passing, I wasn’t sure I wanted to read a travel book that would inevitably delve into the subject of Alzheimer’s and dementia. In The Robber of Memories (£), Michael Jacobs follows Colombia’s Rio Magdalena from the sea to source. The river is so central to Colombian identity, embodying the spirit…

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Tenby: Top Ten Experiences

Tenby: Top Ten Experiences

I first visited Tenby as an eight-year-old with my parents and still have very clear memories of my time there. Then, when my own children came along, I visited a second time and they experienced many of the things I had done twenty years earlier. Now, thanks to Coastal Cottages, I was able to visit again. I stayed in an apartment just a few hundred metres from the Old Town Walls. Cheriton View was conveniently located to explore Tenby on foot. So, during our stay, we explored by walking everywhere. However, Tenby is a great base for exploring further afield too. You can read my review of Cheriton View in another post on this website. Visit the harbour For me, the attraction of Tenby has always been the harbour. One of the more picturesque harbours around the coast of Great…

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Airline Review: Ryanair from Bournemouth

Airline Review: Ryanair from Bournemouth

We had been offered a holiday just 30 minutes drive from Malaga, on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain. I spent some time looking for the best deals but most of those were from the so-called London airports at Luton and Stansted. By the time we drove there from Southampton and paid for parking the deal was not so attractive anymore. It was then I discovered that Ryanair flew from Bournemouth to Malaga. Although the flight was more expensive we could get there cheaply by public transport and not have to park our car in those ludicrously expensive car parks that are a feature of most airports these days. My initial reaction used to be to avoid Ryanair whenever possible. I have personally had some unpleasant experiences with them but, to be fair, I have had good experiences too….

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Travel Quiz: Statues

Travel Quiz: Statues

In which cities will you find these statues? As a traveller, how well do you know the world’s cities? Do you know them well enough to be able to identify them by their statues? In this quiz, try to identify 13 different cities by their statues. Once you have identified the city click on the photo to reveal the answer. Keep a record of your score as you go along. How well did you do? Anything over 10 is good. 13 is excellent – you are a veteran traveller and know your cities well.

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