The Five Star Vagabond

Super travel tips, all road tested by David Herd. I'm an Australian guy who moved to Thailand in 2011 & still travel the world as often as possible.

Santa Cruz Bolivia South America

April 8, 2016 by David Herd

Santa Cruz de la Sierra

Santa Cruz Bolivia South America


Santa Cruz Bolivia South America sits by the Pirai River in the lowlands east of the Andes Mountains. My little adventure took place in 1999 when I flew from Sydney via Las Vegas to Santa Cruz before visiting Iguazu falls. After the fabulous falls I met friends in Sao Paulo before heading for Rio de Janeiro.

It was 1999 and my first digital camera took rather poor photos.

How lucky was I?



I was met at the airport by Dalia a gorgeous 23 yo Bolivian who I had met in a chat room on the internet. Actually I met her friend who could speak English which Dalia could not. So now you know the reason Santa Cruz was on my itinerary.

Dalia’s friend Coral

Santa Cruz Coral


Coral was the go-between for meeting Dalia.

Apologies again for the poor quality photos.


Dinner in Santa Cruz with Coral and Dalia’s son Tony.

Three generations


Everybody I met in Santa Cruz were such nice friendly people. Here is Dalia’s mother and son Tony.

Looking good


Dalia looking very good in her orange bikini.

Typical Santa Cruz street


Some parts of the city are quite modern, this however is not one of those parts.

Santa Cruz church



Like most South American cities there are plenty of churches.

Going for lunch in Santa Cruz


From memory I think I actually ate an Armadillo for lunch.

Dinner is served


It’s certainly not the Ritz but from memory I think the food was OK.

Very friendly people


Everybody was very friendly, many of the places my friends took me were off the beaten track.

Santa Cruz shops


Some of the buildings were a little more modern.

Another friend


Here is Kelly Caballero anther gorgeous girl I had met online before I began my great adventure. I still see her on Facebook now in 2016.

Back to Dalia


After my little diversion with Kelly Dalia & I made plans to head for Brazil.

Santa Cruz Bolivia South America

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Ok let’s get a passport and a ticket for the death train. The “death train” (so named because of its history in transporting Yellow Fever victims) runs on bumpy tracks from Santa Cruz to Corumbá on the Brazilian side.

 Catching some shut-eye on the Death Train.

Amazing Iguazu Falls Brazil

Dalia sleeping peacefully on the way to Quijarro.

 The frontier

Amazing Iguazu Falls Brazil

After leaving the train we walked across the border then took a taxi to the Brazilian immigration office, and that’s where my problems began. I was suspicious when they had my passport and wanted to see a credit card to ensure I had enough money to exist on in Brazil. I knew I was in trouble when they went to another room and came back 5 minutes later to give me my passport and credit card back.

Sure enough a week later my credit card was cancelled as there had been $14,000 spent on it all over Brazil. Everything was sorted out when I returned to Australia and I received a replacement card.

Thanks for visiting my Santa Cruz Bolivia South America photo blog.

Farewell my sweet Bolivian princess.

Amazing Iguazu Falls Brazil

           Checkout some more of my terrific blogs on the links below.         

Istanbul                                 Budapest                        London

Fascinating Istanbul Asia Meets Europe     Hungarian Parliament Building (2)       The Walkie Talkie (5)    

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

43638e36-5da5-4162-98e3-635e2c149837        IMG_7425    Split Ancient Croatian Coastal city                     

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vung tau

Ho Chi Minh City South Vietnam       Main Square (3)     Vung Tau statue (6)

Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
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Pattaya live webcam
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That’s all folks

1g Duck

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Menton French Italian border

August 11, 2015 by David Herd

Menton shopping

Menton French Italian border


 Menton French Italian border is certainly one of my favourite towns on the French Riviera, in fact I intend to make it my base the next time I visit this wonderful part of the world.

Side-walk restaurants & galleries

Menton French Italian border


Menton is certainly overlooked by many tourists & travellers, to me it is much nicer than many of the more popular Riviera locations.

Art gallery



So many interesting shops & restaurants in Menton.

Beautiful restaurant setting



Of course one of the main pastimes in France is food and there are many good restaurants to choose from here.

While we are on the subject of food


  Wonderful French Oysters, even though I now live in Thailand I often enjoy these succulent molluscs which are regularly imported fresh from France.
What a magnificent combination of colours in this seafood pasta

Menton French Italian border

  It tasted every bit as good as it looks. 🙂

Creme Brulee to finish

Menton French Italian border

  Now that’s what I call a perfect lunch.

So many restaurants & so little time


  This is where I enjoyed the wonderful food you see above.

The restaurant was next door to Le Nautic



It’s very easy to get around Menton by car.

Bastion Museum

Menton French Italian border

    Jean Cocteau, painter and poet, became involved in the restoration and decoration of the Bastion, a small fort of the XVII century, in order to convert it into an exhibition place for his work.

One of the many beaches

Menton French Italian border


One of the most popular coastlines in the world.

Comfortable on the rocks?

Antibes Mediterranean resort

 Probably not too comfortable, however I would be very happy lying beside her, I would gladly put up with the pain from the pebbles. :)

High density living

Menton French Italian border

  On the left is the Basilique Saint Michel.

City view



A great view overlooking the harbour and beach.

Harbour view

Menton French Italian border


Some of the thousands of boats on the French Riviera.

Crowded Marina

Menton French Italian border


Sun, sand & boats, however many of the Riviera beaches have pebbles instead of sand.




It seems to be shaped like a large anchor.

The old cemetery


  The previous photos have been taken from the Old Cemetery which is worth a visit. Great view of the old city and harbour.

Old Cemetery overlooking Menton



Some very ancient grave stones here.

The old border checkpoint Menton French Italian border

Menton French Italian border

 Italy is just round the corner from the French Riviera… In fact, if you are in Menton, you can just walk across the border! The Italian town of Ventimiglia is located at the terminus of the coastal railway line that runs between Nice and Monaco. 

Menton is the perfect location

St Tropez to Cinque Terre 2


Menton is the perfect location to stay, 2 hours west to Saint Tropez, 3.5 hours east to the Cinque Terre and 45 minutes north to Breil Sur Roya one of my favourite villages.

                         Aussie girls

Menton French Italian border

Here are my 2 travelling companions from the Gold Coast in Australia, Jodie ONeill & Deborah Holliday. Many thanks for visiting my Menton French Italian border photo blog.

Please check out these fabulous posts

     Istanbul                                 Budapest                        London

Fascinating Istanbul Asia Meets Europe     Hungarian Parliament Building (2)       The Walkie Talkie (5)    

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

43638e36-5da5-4162-98e3-635e2c149837        IMG_7425    Split Ancient Croatian Coastal city                     

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vung tau

Ho Chi Minh City South Vietnam       Main Square (3)     Vung Tau statue (6)

Pattaya live webcam
9a1fec74-4461-46cd-8663-97f5893c8f6e (1)

That’s all folks

1g Duck

Sing it for me please Edith. 🙂


This gallery contains 3 photos