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.

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand

November 27, 2017 by David Herd

Fascinating Thai history

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand

Ayutthaya Historical Park ThailandAyutthaya Historical Park Thailand is about 80 kms north of Bangkok, however we were travelling from Pattaya so it was a 2.5 hour drive. The first thing we saw was this little dancing elephant.

I don’t like to see them trained like this.

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand They are treated cruelly in the training process which is very sad.

Enjoying the ride

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand This activity is fine, but I wish they would stop the cruel training.

These ruins are all over the city.

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand It seems 90% were destroyed by people from Myanmar.  It was capital of the Kingdom of Siam, and a prosperous international trading port, from 1350 until razed by the Burmese in 1767.

 My travelling companions

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand

The 3 Amigos, Bill, Paul & Ron.

The local transport

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand These little Tuk Tuks are very cute.

 Hotel ext door to Temple

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand For an excellent room rate just book through THIS LINK.

Very impressive

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand I was surprised to see how many ruined temples there were.

Quite spectacular

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand Certainly exceeded my expectations. 

Wat Yai Chai Mongkhon

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand We struck a beautiful day with a light breeze.

Very popular with tourists

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand

Buddhist temple in Ayutthaya Lots of tourists everywhere.

Lots of cameras here. 🙂

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand I prefer my Canon Ixus however I also use my pone or some.

There is a lot to enjoy here.

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand

We were too lazy to go up the stairs.

Too may Buddhas are never enough. 🙂

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand I do like the yellow scarves. 🙂

Here we are at  Wat Phra Sri Sanphet 

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand Wat Phra Si Sanphet was the holiest temple on the site of the old Royal Palace in Thailand’s ancient capital of Ayutthaya until the city was completely destroyed by the Burmese in 1767. Wikipedia

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand Not may tourists here.

Why did the elephant cross the road?

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand Because anything the chicken can do he can do better. 🙂

Finally lunch then back home.

Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand Col One Love Restaurant was a bit of a tourist trap, we didn’t do our research & took our drivers advice. (kickbacks would apply here) Food was ok but not good value.

Thanks for visiting my Ayutthaya Historical Park Thailand photo blog.

Holiday Inn

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Fabulous views, excellent restaurants & a very good room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

The building in the middle is the Holiday Inn, on the left is the Amari Hotel which is another very good five star hotel. Use THIS LINK to book for a very good room rate.

Sabai Wing North Pattaya

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The best Pattaya budget hotel, 3 pools & opposite Central Marina shopping mall. For a great room rate just book through THIS LINK.

Sutus Court is a great budget hotel right i the heart of one of Pattaya’s main bar areas, just use THIS LINK for a terrific room rate. 420/100 Moo 9 Soi Buakhao.

Pattaya Hilton

Pattaya hotels, Hilton & Holiday Inn

This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate.

 Soi Cowboy                  Nana Plaza                    Patpong

 Soi Cowboy (5)           e1274c0c-cf4d-4406-b5dc-d9e8071e382e            8993ef02-ccf3-46a7-8b6d-fc11af9d93ad

 
  Please check out these fabulous posts
       Gold Coast                              Pattaya                          Cinque Terre
bd96516a-84df-4ca0-86e6-c757cc9053d1          01a75360-9573-473f-acba-3a187f779b7f          e18b6c87-5adc-4a80-92cf-6c643ad130c1
 
Rio de Janeiro                  Singapore                    Eastern Europe
f044491e-69aa-4082-b49b-1ff33557d7d4          60e7d26d-1039-4dde-863d-62b66656ccbf          1bea4a99-cb07-4161-83ba-75c0ef2b63cc
    Bangkok Bars                         Tokyo                      Cape Town Safari
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          f5e9441a-4154-44e0-a362-18b662d40b48          2a2b79ea-bc5f-46e3-8448-2e71658eff14
               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
Free Cancellation. 
Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          b1c99886-3940-4dda-b350-44c5e5c77e41
 
 That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

 

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

June 5, 2017 by David Herd

Sandy beach at Bournemouth.

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort has a sandy beach unlike Brighton beach and many others of the English coast. I was there in 2007 and returned in 09 mainly to visit the Westbeach restaurant again. The Beach is long and clean. There is plenty of space to chill out. Lovely views and lots to do with places to eat on the promenade and pier.

The benefit of sand

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

You certainly can’t do this on a beach with stones instead of sand. 🙂

Looking east

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

 Remember what I said? Bournemouth Beach has sand.

The pier

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

   Bournemouth’s main attraction apart from the beach. 🙂  

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

 Bournemouth Beach has sand which is a huge improvement on many English beaches.  

Westbeach Restaurant

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

 Good English restaurants, many people think they are few and far between, but here is one to consider. The Westbeach restaurant in Bournemouth is certainly worth a visit, great location on the beach, with a good menu offering a nice selection. I first visited Westbeach December 2007 then returned in 2009 so things may have changed by now.

Delicious salmon

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

  Here is an example of the Westbeach food.  

AFC Bournemouth

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

Huge news in 2015 for the local football club who are to be promoted to the premier league. As recently as 2008, Bournemouth sat slumped at the very foot of the four levels of the English league pyramid. Of the 92 teams spanning League Two all the way up to the Premier League, the Cherries, who began the season with minus-17 points as a penalty for entering bankruptcy with ÂŁ4 million worth of debt, were no. 92. Bournemouth weren’t just on the brink of dropping out of the division structure,  but out of existence altogether. Seven years later, a club that recorded an annual turnover of just ÂŁ5.1 million for the 2012-13 season will be flooded with about ÂŁ120 million in additional Premier League revenue.

My local bar in Thailand

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

   My local bar in Thailand is the Cherry Bar so I guess now I’ll have to follow the Cherries. 🙂  

Sadly the bar was sold in 2016 & is now called Billabong 2, life as I knew it will never be the same. 🙂

Another restaurant near the Pier.

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

 The city has a much more relaxed atmosphere than Brighton.

Beachside at Bournemouth

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

Also as a comparison to Brighton sand is so much more inviting than pebbles. 🙂

One final look at the Pier

Bournemouth English Seaside Resort

Thanks for visiting my “Bournemouth English Seaside Resort” post, it is certainly a place to add to your bucket list. Head west from there and visit the delightful village of Lyme Regis on the Jurassic Coast.

Thanks for visiting my Bournemouth English Seaside Resort photo blog.

For a great hotel room rate in Bournemouth just book through THIS LINK.

           Have a look at some of my London posts.     

   Istanbul                                 Budapest                        London

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

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

                     43638e36-5da5-4162-98e3-635e2c149837IMG_7425Split Ancient Croatian Coastal city                    

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vung tau

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

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

That’s all folks

1g Duck

Holiday Inn

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Fabulous views, excellent restaurants & a very good room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

The building in the middle is the Holiday Inn, on the left is the Amari Hotel which is another very good five star hotel. Use THIS LINK to book for a very good room rate.

Sabai Wing North Pattaya

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The best Pattaya budget hotel, 3 pools & opposite Central Marina shopping mall. For a great room rate just book through THIS LINK.

 

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

June 4, 2017 by David Herd

Church of St George, Beckington

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Beckington Trowbridge South West England 2009, how did I find myself there you may well ask. Quite simple really, since 2007 I have been travelling to England to visit my friend Alan who is a guest of Her Majesty. His brother Bill Austin and I have become good friends as well, so I stay with him and his partner Joan Baptiste, and between visiting Alan Bill and I tour around the country.

So to answer the question, Bill lives in Beckington and works for the council in Trowbridge. Beckington village is 5.8 miles from Trowbridge town centre and 10 miles from the historical city of Bath.

Church of St George

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

The church is just across the road from Bill and Joan’s home and dates back to the 14th century.

Warminster Road

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

The church is on the right just up the road and Bill’s home is on the left.

Bill and Joan’s Beckington home.

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Here is their delightful home, I feel a little sorry for Bill because no sooner has he got the place perfect Joan decides she wants to move elsewhere. 🙂

My friends Joan Baptiste and Bill Austin

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Bill works for the local Trowbridge council.

Woolpack Inn Warminster Road

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

For local news bookmark this link for the Wiltshire times.

Typical Beckington home

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Typical local stone houses.

Trowbridge

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

 There is evidence that the land on which Trowbridge is built was being farmed more than 3,000 years ago. In the 10th century written records and architectural ruins begin marking Trowbridge’s existence as a village.

The Trowbridge fair

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

The annual fair attracts lots to locals.

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

A peaceful area around a pond in the park.

Trowbridge Fair

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

The locals are patiently waiting for the music to begin.

The rocket man

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

A beautiful at the Trowbridge Fair, perhaps I’ll blast off.

Arrested for stealing a spacesuit

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

The long arm of the law.

Out on bail

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

I know what you are thinking, here are two dinosaurs. 🙂 🙂 🙂

 The White Hart Ford, Chippenham

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

One of the great pleasures of touring around the UK is the thousands of wonderful pubs. In the last week or so we have visited many on our road trip that took us through Bath, Plymouth, Penzance, Lands End and St Ives.

Road trip

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

This is a wonderful part of England, a very interesting coastline. 

The White Hart

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Many of the pubs are quite ancient.

Location, White Hart to the Woolpack Inn

Beckington Trowbridge South West England

Thanks for visiting my Beckington Trowbridge South West England photo blog.

 More posts for you to see

Pattaya Hilton

Pattaya hotels, Hilton & Holiday Inn

This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate. 

 Soi Cowboy                  Nana Plaza                    Patpong

 Soi Cowboy (5)           e1274c0c-cf4d-4406-b5dc-d9e8071e382e            8993ef02-ccf3-46a7-8b6d-fc11af9d93ad

 
  Please check out these fabulous posts
       Gold Coast                              Pattaya                          Cinque Terre
bd96516a-84df-4ca0-86e6-c757cc9053d1          01a75360-9573-473f-acba-3a187f779b7f          e18b6c87-5adc-4a80-92cf-6c643ad130c1
 
Rio de Janeiro                  Singapore                    Eastern Europe
f044491e-69aa-4082-b49b-1ff33557d7d4          60e7d26d-1039-4dde-863d-62b66656ccbf          1bea4a99-cb07-4161-83ba-75c0ef2b63cc
    Bangkok Bars                         Tokyo                      Cape Town Safari
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          f5e9441a-4154-44e0-a362-18b662d40b48          2a2b79ea-bc5f-46e3-8448-2e71658eff14 
               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
Free Cancellation. 
Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          b1c99886-3940-4dda-b350-44c5e5c77e41
 
 That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

This gallery contains 0 photos

Wandering around South West England

June 3, 2017 by David Herd

Shaftesbury in Dorset

Wandering around South West England is a total pleasure.

Wandering around South West England

Wandering around South West England, I have taken thousands of photos there and this one is my favorite. It is Gold Hill, Shaftesbury which is in Dorset. There is a nice tea room at the top of the hill where you can enjoy scones with jam & cream while enjoying the view. I will try to give you some useful travel tips towards the end of this post.

Lyme Regis, Dorset.

Wandering around South West England

 Lyme Regis in Dorset is a special place, the coastline in either direction is magnificent. The cliffs over the  boarder are grey and crumbling, those eastwards, towards Charmouth are also unstable – especially after heavy rain, and those at Black Ven are capped with a layer of Gold. The town is noted for the fossils found in the cliffs and beaches, which are part of the Heritage Coast—known commercially as the Jurassic Coast—a World Heritage Site. For information please click here.

Lyme Regis South west England

Wandering around South West England

 A beautiful part of the English coastline.

Weymouth Travelling South West England

Wandering around South West England

Weymouth is a seaside town in Dorset,  situated on a sheltered bay at the mouth of the River Wey on the English Channel coast. The town is 13 kilometres (8 mi) south of Dorchester and 8 kilometres (5 mi) north of the Isle of Portland. The town’s population is 52,323 (2011). The town is the largest settlement in Dorset following the unitary authorities of Bournemouth and Poole   The history of the borough stretches back to the 12th century; including involvement in the spread of the Black Death, the settlement of the Americas, the development of Georgian architecture, and preparations for World War II. Fishing and trading employ fewer people in the area since their peak in earlier centuries, but tourism has continuously increased its presence in the town since the 18th century and is now the primary industry. Weymouth is a tourist resort, and its economy depends on its harbor and visitor attractions; the town is a gateway situated halfway along the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site on the Dorset and east Devon coast, important for its geology and landforms. Weymouth Harbour is home to cross-channel ferries, pleasure boats and private yachts, and nearby Portland Harbour is home to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, where the sailing events of the 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games were held.

Wandering around South West England to Dorchester 

Wandering around South West England

Dorchester is the county town of Dorset. A historic market town, Dorchester lies on the banks of the River Frome, in the Frome Valley, just south of the Dorset Downs and north of the South Dorset Ridgeway, that separates the area from Weymouth, 8 miles (13 km) south. Dorchester is noted as being home and inspiration to the author Thomas Hardy, whose novel The Mayor of Casterbridge was based on the town. In the 2001 Census the official population of Dorchester was 16,171, although by 2010 this was estimated to have risen to 18,280.

St Ives in Cornwall

Wandering around South West England

St Ives is a seaside town, civil parish and port in Cornwall. The town lies north of Penzance and west of Camborne on the coast of the Celtic Sea. In former times it was commercially dependent on fishing. Wikipedia

Wandering around South West England to St Ives

Wandering around South West England

Lots of narrow winding lanes some too narrow for vehicles.

Lands End, Cornwall.

Wandering around South West England

 Here we are at Lands End in Cornwall, England’s most westerly point. Wind levels in winter reach around 20-25 knots, which is windier than most of England. The highest temperature recorded is 28.9 °C, and the lowest temperature recorded is -3.4 °C.

For a great room rate just book through THIS LINK.

Most westerly point in England.

Wandering around South West England

Such a wild rugged coastline.

The famous Roman Baths in Bath.

Wandering around South West England

I’m sure these baths have not changed in centuries.

Beautiful city of Bath

 

Wandering around South West England

This is certainly one of my favourite English cities Wandering around South West England.

So many pubs & such little time.

Wandering around South West England

English pubs have got to be the best in the world, then again I have never been to Ireland. 🙂

Please click on Google + to help my ranking. 

Bradford on Avon

Wandering around South West England

We have traveled north now to Bradford on Avon in west Wiltshire, one of my favourite English villages with some excellent pubs & restaurants.

My niece Laura love the scones at The Bridge Tea rooms.

Wandering around South West England

Can afternoon tea get any better than this?

Tithe Barn Bradford on Avon

Wandering around South West England

A tithe barn was a type of barn used in much of northern Europe in the Middle Ages for storing tithes—one tenth of a farm’s produce which was given to the Church. Tithe barns were usually associated with the village church or rectory and independent farmers took their tithes there.

Tithe Barn

Wandering around South West England

The village priests wouldn’t have to pay tithes—the purpose of the tithe being their support—and some had their own farms anyway, which are now village greens in some villages.

Houseboats on the Kennet and Avon Canal.

Wandering around South West England

The ducks or drakes deciding whether to go for a swim or a walk. 🙂

Two Dinosaurs at the Trowbridge show in Wiltshire.

Wandering around South West England

Oh well, it is better to be a “has been” than a “never was”. 🙂
 
For a great discount on your room rate just book through THIS LINK.
 

Super travel tips. Great Britain has an excellent rail service, save up to 80% by booking your ticket before you arrive, just click here. London Underground’s Piccadilly Line provides the most cost-effective rail route between Heathrow Airport and the capital, so look for accommodation around Earl’s Court, Gloucester Rd or Knightsbridge. For more information click here.

Here is an excellent hotel close to Gloucester Rd underground.

For lots of things to do in Bath please click here.

For information on beautiful Bradford on Avon just click here.

Wandering around South West England is certainly one of my favorite parts of this wonderful country.                     

                        Here are some more posts to check out
 

           

Pattaya Hilton

Pattaya hotels, Hilton & Holiday Inn

This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate. 

 Soi Cowboy                  Nana Plaza                    Patpong

 Soi Cowboy (5)           e1274c0c-cf4d-4406-b5dc-d9e8071e382e            8993ef02-ccf3-46a7-8b6d-fc11af9d93ad

 
  Please check out these fabulous posts
       Gold Coast                              Pattaya                          Cinque Terre
bd96516a-84df-4ca0-86e6-c757cc9053d1          01a75360-9573-473f-acba-3a187f779b7f          e18b6c87-5adc-4a80-92cf-6c643ad130c1
 
Rio de Janeiro                  Singapore                    Eastern Europe
f044491e-69aa-4082-b49b-1ff33557d7d4          60e7d26d-1039-4dde-863d-62b66656ccbf          1bea4a99-cb07-4161-83ba-75c0ef2b63cc
    Bangkok Bars                         Tokyo                      Cape Town Safari
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          f5e9441a-4154-44e0-a362-18b662d40b48          2a2b79ea-bc5f-46e3-8448-2e71658eff14 
               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
Free Cancellation. 
Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          b1c99886-3940-4dda-b350-44c5e5c77e41
 
 That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

November 20, 2016 by David Herd

Atomic Bomb Dome

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

 Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park as expected was an emotional experience that I will never forget. Seventy one years ago at 8.15 am on August 6th 1945 U.S. pilots dropped an atomic bomb immediately killing 140,000 people. The Genbaku Dome you see above was the only building left standing near the centre of the bomb’s blast.

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

The A-Bomb Dome from the Aioi Bridge, the bomb exploded right above the building, however the vertical columns in the building were somehow able to withstand the downward force of the blast.

It’s amazing the building survived

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

The bomb actually exploded 160 meters from the Dome & as you would expect everybody inside was killed instantly.

The Bell of Peace

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Built in 1964 to symbolize the creation of a movement for a world without nuclear weapons and war.

Dedication of the Peace Bell

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Of course as we all know, three days after the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima they also bombed Nagasaki. Many people believe it was not necessary to wipe out another 70,000 civilians as Japan was on the point of surrendering.

Cenotaph for the A-bomb Victims

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

 The Cenotaph is inscribed, “Let all the souls here rest in peace, for we shall not repeat the evil.”

Cenotaph & park

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

A memorial is held here every year on August 6th.

Flame of Peace

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Since it was lit on August 1, 1964 it has burned continuously to symbolize a commitment that all nuclear weapons should be removed from our planet.

Children’s Peace Monument

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park 

At two years of age Sadako Sasaki was exposed to the bombing, she contracted leukaemia ten years later and died. Shocked by her death, her classmates called for a monument to mourn all the children who died from the atomic bombing. Credit Cityof Hiroshima.

For me this reresents the saddest memory of all

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

The mass murder of thousands of innocent children in Hiroshima & Nagasaki is for me the saddest part of this horrific event which we can only hope will never be repeated.

Magnificent trees

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Located as you walk through the entrance of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.

Trees beside the flame of peace

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

In the distance you can see the Atomic Bomb Dome or Genbaku DĹŤmu.

Goddess of Peace

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

 Representing 3 religions, Angel’s wings for Christianity, Face of Buddha, & Shinto emblem on belt.

Obama visits Hiroshima

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

An historic meeting with Primeminister Abe on May 27 2016. Here are their speeches.

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

 

Thank you for visiting my Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park photo blog, we can only hope such a shocking event will never happen again.

How powerful was Hiroshima?

Atom bombs size

Compared to weapons of today it could be considered small, however that is not the case, it killed 140,000 people. 

Robert Lewis, the co-pilot of the U.S. bomber “Enola Gay,” later wrote, “My God what have we done?”
That horror, encapsulated by those few words, continues to resonate worldwide.

My highly rated hotel was in the perfect location next to Hiroshima station and close to tram & bus stops. For  a discounted room rate & free WiFi just book through THIS LINK. 

                      Here are some more posts to check out           

 

   Zagreb Croatia                      Rio de Janeiro                  Brisbane River 

Zagreb Croatia bars restaurants        a7ff7566-9628-434d-a2b1-8c6e8b9a9021       IMG_0100

       

     Koh Samui                                   Korea                                  London

32780a6c-baf6-428a-bd71-68b1bed30b4c         Changdeokgung Palace (2)        IMG_7042

         Bangkok                                   Osaka                                     Pattaya

Soi Cowboy (25)          Osaka 1st night (17)       Walking St Pattaya is wild & sexy 

                                     

             Chiang Mai                      Pattaya                      Chao Phraya river

Chiang Mai with Tone        9a1fec74-4461-46cd-8663-97f5893c8f6e (1)   191de3bb-38fc-45cd-bce7-ef24081c554b

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

That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

November 17, 2016 by David Herd

Peace Park Statue

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

 Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb which was dropped on the city August 9th 1945 instantly killing 74,000 civilians. The 9.7 meter statue was created in the hope this horrific tragic event will never be repeated.

Terrible statistics

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

 Man’s inhumanity to man, Makes countless thousands mourn! Robert Burns 1784.

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

The right hand is pointing to the sky signifying the threat of atomic weapons, the left arm points horizontally to represent the wish for peace.

 Fountain of Peace

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

The fountain is shaped like the wings of an angel, it was constructed to remember the poor tragic victims who died searching for water.

Nagasaki Peace Bell

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb 

The Bells of Nagasaki were set up in 1977 and each year are rung at the moment of silence at 11:02 on the anniversary of the terrible event which instantly killed 74,000 people.

On 9 August 1945, the US dropped the second atomic bomb ever deployed in conflict, hitting the Japanese industrial city of Nagasaki. From BBC News August 2015.

School children of Nagasaki

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

 On October 24 2016 I saw these Japanese students paying respect at the Nagasaki Peace Park. I spoke to one of the teachers who told me they were here for a “peace lesson”. I told the teacher vissiting Nagasaka had an extra personal meaning for me, I explained that my late uncle was a prisoner in the mines during the war, and how he was liberated by the Americans, put on a train & passed through the still burning city of Nagasaki 3 days after the atomic bomb instantly killed 74,000 people.

Here is my uncle’s story written in 1980, http://fivestarvagabond.com/soldiers-incredible-story/

This was a very special moving experience for me, seeing & hearing these beautiful Japanese schoolchildren singing for peace at the Nagasaki Peace Park.

 More school children

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

 Heiwa Kinen-zo statue at Nagasaki Peace Park, an extremely humbling emotional experience reading about the 74,000 people who were killed instantly in August 1945. The marvelous statue was built to pray for victims of atomic bomb.

 Orizuru or paper cranes

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

 

There is a lovely story behind these colourful paper cranes that are sent by people from all over the world, they have really become a symbol of peace. 

A moving & symbolic experience

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

This statue provided perhaps the most moving and symbolic experience in my life, maybe it was the connection with my late uncle, maybe it was the emotion generated by the children that were here being taught about peace, whatever the reason I shall never forget this day.

How powerful was Hiroshima & Nagasaki?

Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb

Compared to weapons of today it could be considered small, however that is not the case, it killed 140,000 people. 

Robert Lewis, the co-pilot of the U.S. bomber “Enola Gay,” later wrote, “My God what have we done?”
That horror, encapsulated by those few words, continues to resonate worldwide.

My hotel was in a perfect location only a 10 minute tram ride to the Peace Park. Rated highly by AGODA, book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate with free WiFi.

Thank you for visiting my Nagasaki Peace Park remembers Atom Bomb photo blog.

 

                                            Here are some more posts to check out 

         Sydney                               Paris                                   Bangkok           
 497d0b6e-c0bd-4ba2-86be-c02100f050a8        65470622-d17a-4b90-bf97-2574df4c412d        1a2160c1-41f7-465a-954c-631e083eb229
          Tokyo                        Rio De Janeiro                        Budapest
f59e958e-8eaf-48b4-8e96-c291a0c13d1a        f044491e-69aa-4082-b49b-1ff33557d7d4        a6a948cd-f30a-49ea-a905-82be4d202cc9
           London                            Beijing                            Capetown
2246c6cf-5fa6-4fbe-ac30-b569253ad2a6        f65d714b-f44c-4b2e-9505-3511ebecbb80        4e82052a-24d0-41e1-ab84-10e8f27634d1
 
            Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you            
                book through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
                                                                 Plus free cancellation .
                                               Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                                            d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037            01a75360-9573-473f-acba-3a187f779b7f
 

Slide show here.

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

That’s all folks

1g Duck

This gallery contains 3 photos

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

June 16, 2016 by David Herd

Uttoxeter in Staffordshire

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais from England to France was our starting point for our road trip to Brugge and Versailles, which finished in Brighton on the south coast of England. I was travelling with two English friends Bill Austin & Dave Catchpole, & the reason our trip started in Uttoxeter was to visit my good friend Alan Austin (Bill’s brother) who was a guest of Her Majesty for a rather major indiscretion involving transportation of a certain white powder from Spain to England.

Overnight at Maidstone

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

We stayed in the Townhouse Hotel in Maidstone which was excellent and left early for Dover, little did I realise at the time that quite a bit of tension would build up between the 3 of us over the coming days. Bill & I had been on successful road trips in the past which went as smooth as silk, however adding Dave to this trip seemed to effect the dynamics resulting in an unfortunate parting of the ways in Brighton.

First glimpse of the white cliffs

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

We really didn’t explore Dover, instead we went straight to the ferry terminal.

Waiting in the queue

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

There were certainly a lot of vehicles making the crossing.

Lots of trucks carrying freight

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

The trucks go on the ferry first then the private vehicles.

Ferries are quite large.

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

Which is comforting given the weather conditions can be rather rough in the channel.

A little chilly on deck

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

Bill and I looking forward to leaving Dover.

Incoming Dover Calais Ferry

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

They seem to be rather frequent travelling both ways.

Farewell to the white cliffs.

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

I guess any time old guys like me talk about the white cliffs of Dover a particular song comes to mind.

Let’s hear it Vera.

The magnificent white cliffs

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

The cliffs look quite fantastic, only 22 miles to Calais.

For an excellent hotel room rate in Dover just use THIS LINK.

Dover Calais Ferry, about 2 hours.

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

Where are all the people?

Arriving in Calais

English Channel Ferry Dover Calais

With nobody to meet us but the seagulls, many thanks for visiting my English Channel Ferry Dover Calais photo blog.

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

       

   Istanbul                                 Budapest                        London

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

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

                     43638e36-5da5-4162-98e3-635e2c149837IMG_7425Split Ancient Croatian Coastal city                    

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vung tau

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

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

That’s all folks

1g Duck

Holiday Inn

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Fabulous views, excellent restaurants & a very good room rate if you book through THIS LINK.

The building in the middle is the Holiday Inn, on the left is the Amari Hotel which is another very good five star hotel. Use THIS LINK to book for a very good room rate.

Sabai Wing North Pattaya

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The best Pattaya budget hotel, 3 pools & opposite Central Marina shopping mall. For a great room rate just book through THIS LINK.

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Travel Tokyo Bangkok HCMC New York

September 1, 2015 by David Herd

Japan

Travel Tokyo Bangkok HCMC New York

Travel tips five great countries

Travel Tokyo Bangkok HCMC New York starting with Japan, I’ll list the 5 countries in alphabetical order rather than by personal preference. The photo above is  Shabusen at the Ginza A terrific restaurant for Kobe beef, go at lunch time for special prices. Check out my first post in this series here.

The train system is fantastic, from Tokyo it’s a 40 minute trip to Yokohama or 3  h0urs by bullet train to beautiful Kyoto.

One square meter of land in the Ginza center is worth more than ten million yen (more than 100,000 US dollars), making it one of the most expensive real estate in Japan. It is where you can find the infamous $10 cups of coffee and where virtually every leading brand name in fashion and cosmetics has a presence. To me Tokyo is all about food, food and more food, interestingly the Michelin guide has Tokyo comfortably ahead of Paris (10 three-starred restaurants), New York (7) and London (2), with a total of 350 establishments making it into the guide this time around.

 Kabukicho                        Harajuku girls                                   Tokyo

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     Kabukicho is an entertainment and red-light district in Shinjuku, Tokyo. Kabukicho is the location of many host and hostess clubs, love hotels, shops, restaurants, and nightclubs, and is often called the “Sleepless Town.”   Make sure you check out my post called “Piss Alley”.

I don’t know any other person who has travelled more than I during the last 20 years. Perhaps I can provide you with a few ideas on where to go for your next holiday.

Thailand

Travel tips five great countries

  I sold my home in Australia October 20th 2011 and have have been living in Thailand since then. My first trip to this great country was in 1980, however it wasn’t until 1997 when I started visiting 2 or 3 times each year. In the early days Koh Samui was a favourite destination, however in my opinion progress has not improved the island, it was far better before all the modern gold shops etc moved in. These days I prefer Koh Chang near the Cambodian border & of course Bangkok is fantastic with so many great bars, restaurants & shopping malls.

              Chiang Mai                           Pattaya                            Chao Phraya river

Travel tips five great countries

Chiang Mai tiger warning, the sign could not have been clearer. It was placed a metre from the cage which was at the rear of the zoo away from the other tiger enclosures. It simply said “danger, don’t go past this sign”. Looking back I have done many stupid things in my life and this certainly ranks highly in the “stupidity stakes.”

Naturally I ignored the warning and moved past the sign and put my camera lens through the wire to get a clear shot of the magnificent beast sitting quietly in the pond two meters from my lens. Within one second of taking the photo there seemed to be an explosion in front of me and suddenly I jumped backwards totally soaked with water.

I could barely hear my brother’s raucous laughter from several meters away due to the rapid beating of my heart. The 240 kilo beast had lept from the pond and hit the wire full force with all his four giant paws. My luck held as did the wire, which without exaggeration saved me from being torn to pieces.

Travel tips five great countries

I e-mailed the tiger zoo and inquired about this particular tiger. They told me his name was Tone, he weighed 240 kilo and was far too dangerous to allow the public to get close, he was just used for breeding.

United Kingdom part of my Travel tips five great countries photo blog.

Travel tips five great countries

So many places to see & so much history. I travel there most years making London my base, then visit cities & towns all over the country either by train or car. Apart from London some of my favourite places are Brighton, Bath, Glasgow & Bradford on Avon. The photo above is Gold Hill is a steep cobbled street in the town of Shaftesbury in the English county of Dorset.

      London pubs                      Lands End                  Hyde Park

 Travel tips five great countries  

Travel tips. Great Britain has an excellent rail service, save up to 80% by booking your ticket before you arrive, just click here. London Underground’s Piccadilly Line provides the most cost-effective rail route between Heathrow Airport and the capital, so look for accommodation around Earl’s CourtGloucester Rd or Knightsbridge. For more information click here.

United States of America

Travel tips five great countries

Another huge country offering everything from snow capped mountains to desert, beaches & exciting cities. New York of course is everyone’s favourite however hotel costs are so expensive. I really enjoy Miami with the wonderful Cuban influence, but I must say the last time I was in San Francisco I was quite disappointed by the high numbers of beggars on the city streets.

Miami                                San Francisco                           New York

Travel tips five great countries

Car hire and internal flights are reasonably inexpensive. In Los Angeles I always stay in Santa Monica where I enjoy the restaurants and Venus beach.

Vietnam

Travel tips five great countries

 Ho Chi Minh City is Honda heaven, it is quite a shock when you see the number of motorbikes on the streets, crossing the road seems like a game of Russian roulette. My main memories of this wonderful country are the beautiful ladies and the terrific food. My first visit was twice in 2003 then 12 years later in January 2015. Halong Bay is a magical experience, make sure you stay overnight on one of the many boats, it’s an experience you will never forget. Vung Tau and Nha Trang are two of my favourites places in this great country.

Hoi An                             Chill Sky Bar                      HCMC 2015

Travel Tokyo Bangkok HCMC New York

Warning, when catching a taxi in Saigon stick with Vinasun or Mai Linh for clean honest low priced taxis. Many other companies are rip off merchants who will try to rob you.

Don’t under any circumstances use the company below.

Travel Tokyo Bangkok HCMC New York

Thanks for visiting my Travel tips five great countries photo blog.

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

Pattaya Hilton

Pattaya hotels, Hilton & Holiday Inn

This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate. 

 Soi Cowboy                  Nana Plaza                    Patpong

 Soi Cowboy (5)           e1274c0c-cf4d-4406-b5dc-d9e8071e382e            8993ef02-ccf3-46a7-8b6d-fc11af9d93ad

 
  Please check out these fabulous posts
       Gold Coast                              Pattaya                          Cinque Terre
bd96516a-84df-4ca0-86e6-c757cc9053d1          01a75360-9573-473f-acba-3a187f779b7f          e18b6c87-5adc-4a80-92cf-6c643ad130c1
 
Rio de Janeiro                  Singapore                    Eastern Europe
f044491e-69aa-4082-b49b-1ff33557d7d4          60e7d26d-1039-4dde-863d-62b66656ccbf          1bea4a99-cb07-4161-83ba-75c0ef2b63cc
    Bangkok Bars                         Tokyo                      Cape Town Safari
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          f5e9441a-4154-44e0-a362-18b662d40b48          2a2b79ea-bc5f-46e3-8448-2e71658eff14 
               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
Free Cancellation. 
Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          b1c99886-3940-4dda-b350-44c5e5c77e41
 
 That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

 

This gallery contains 2 photos

Travel tips five fabulous countries

August 30, 2015 by David Herd

David Herd is the FiveStarVagabond

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Travel tips five fabulous countries feature some of my favourite places, many people may think I’m a bit of a dinosaur & perhaps I am, however I don’t know any other person who has travelled more than I during the last 30 years. Therefore I hope can provide you with a few ideas on where to go for your next holiday.

I’ll list the 5 countries in alphabetical order rather than by personal preference.

 Australia

Travel tips five fabulous countries

The home of my birth and a country that offers a huge diversification of incredible travel destinations. Most people find it difficult to grasp the size of this great country, don’t make the mistake of trying to cover too much in 3 or 4 weeks, better to come back another time.

Sydney is the most spectacular city but don’t forget Perth and Adelaide both wonderful cities also. Then of course there is the Gold Coast in Queensland with it’s wonderful weather and beautiful beaches.

For a good budget hotel in Sydney just book through this link. Broadbeach is the best place to stay on the Gold Coast, here is a very good value apartment block in a perfect location.

Three suggestions

Sydney                           Great Ocean Rd                            Outback

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Brazil Travel tips one of the five fabulous countries

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Bigger and more diverse than Australia I have enjoyed 8 visits to the wonderful country. Rio de Janeiro is fabulous however there is so much more to see. Apart from Rio my favourite places are Praia de Pipa, Paraty, Iguazu Falls & Florianoplis.

Check out these Brazilian posts

Camboriu                                 Rio’s beaches                         Fortaleza           

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Since 2004, the blocos have exploded and now there are now nearly 300 blocos with over 40 new ones appearing for the 2007 Carnaval.  The first blocos started only a little over ten years ago. This is the heart of the “Street Carnival” which includes the greater likelihood of locals playing percussion instruments with their friends at their favorite hangout as well as  the Bandstands and the many Parades of downtown’s Rio Branco Avenue. These events are inclusive and practice for the musicians begins months before the Carnaval and the parades do not end until Sunday of the following weekend.

Croatia is a must for travellers  here are Travel tips five fabulous countries

Travel tips five fabulous countries

It was March 2005 before I finally made it to this fascinating country, the photo above is the coastal city of Split. I travelled by bus between the major cities to see more of the actual country. I had a terrific 2 bedroom apartment in a great location for only $50 per night, book through this link.

Next door is Bosnia so make sure you also visit the wonderful city of Mostar.

Split                               Dubrovnik                              Zagreb

Travel tips five fabulous countries

In Zagreb I stayed at the excellent hotel Dubrovnik overlooking the Main Square you see above, it was a perfect location with good wifi. Marc van Bloemen owner of Karmen apartments in Dubrovnik was the perfect host, he  a friendly Englishman who will point you in the right direction for restaurants, tours & places of interests, he also has a great knowledge of Dubrovniks history.

United Kingdom

Travel tips five fabulous countries

So many places to see & so much history. I travel there most years making London my base, then visit cities & towns all over the country either by train or car. Apart from London some of my favourite places are Brighton, Bath, Glasgow & Bradford on Avon. The photo above is Gold Hill is a steep cobbled street in the town of Shaftesbury in the English county of Dorset.

London pubs                          Lands End                            Hyde Park

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Travel tips. Great Britain has an excellent rail service, save up to 80% by booking your ticket before you arrive, just click here. London Underground’s Piccadilly Line provides the most cost-effective rail route between Heathrow Airport and the capital, so look for accommodation around Earl’s CourtGloucester Rd or Knightsbridge. For more information click here.

France

Travel tips five fabulous countries

 Where do you start Paris or Monte Carlo, the choices are endless in this wonderful country. One of my favourite holidays was based in Breil Sur Roya a small village in the mountains near the Italian border just north of Menton. From here I was able to explore many medieval French & Italian villages as well as the fabulous French Riviera. The Roya river runs through town and is open to trout anglers from March to September. Part of the trout run is reserved for fly-fishing. Trout anglers share the river with white water rafters, another popular local sport.

Saorge                                  St Tropez                              Versailles

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Chateau de Versailles Paris is a  fabulous destination which made my bucket list as soon as I saw the Woody Allen movie “Midnight in Paris”. When the Château was built, Versailles was a country village; today, however, it is a wealthy suburb of Paris, some 20 kilometres southwest of the French capital.

Italy

Travel tips five fabulous countries

My favourite European Country by a long shot. The food, the wine, the crazy drivers who park anywhere, there is so much to see & do it’s hard to know where to start. Rome, Florence, Venice there are so many great cities, however if I had to pick two favourites they would be Sam Gimignano and the Cinque Terre.

Florence                              Lake Como                              Portofino

Travel tips five fabulous countries

Travel tip, take a wonderful one hour walk from Santa Margherita. The homes are truly magnificent,  prepare yourself for a great experience when you arrive at the beautiful waterfront village of Portofino. The buildings, the boats, the restaurants, it’s all there. Just make sure you have your credit card and a wallet full of Euros. For the budget minded like myself it makes more sense to stay at Santa Margherita and visit Portofino on foot or by ferry. The Lido Palace is on the beach if you want to go upmarket, my hotel was one block back and reasonable priced, with free car parkingThe Mediterraneo.

Thanks for visiting my Travel tips five fabulous countries photo blog.

  Please check out these fabulous posts  
Pattaya Hilton

Pattaya hotels, Hilton & Holiday Inn

This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate. 

 Soi Cowboy                  Nana Plaza                    Patpong

 Soi Cowboy (5)           e1274c0c-cf4d-4406-b5dc-d9e8071e382e            8993ef02-ccf3-46a7-8b6d-fc11af9d93ad

 
  Please check out these fabulous posts
       Gold Coast                              Pattaya                          Cinque Terre
bd96516a-84df-4ca0-86e6-c757cc9053d1          01a75360-9573-473f-acba-3a187f779b7f          e18b6c87-5adc-4a80-92cf-6c643ad130c1
 
Rio de Janeiro                  Singapore                    Eastern Europe
f044491e-69aa-4082-b49b-1ff33557d7d4          60e7d26d-1039-4dde-863d-62b66656ccbf          1bea4a99-cb07-4161-83ba-75c0ef2b63cc
    Bangkok Bars                         Tokyo                      Cape Town Safari
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          f5e9441a-4154-44e0-a362-18b662d40b48          2a2b79ea-bc5f-46e3-8448-2e71658eff14 
               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
Free Cancellation. 
Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
d0c59ff5-7f2b-41b5-9312-4556d4a62037          b1c99886-3940-4dda-b350-44c5e5c77e41
 
 That’s all folks

1g Duck

 

 

This gallery contains 0 photos

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

August 17, 2015 by David Herd

North of Monte Carlo

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

Sospel village near Monte Carlo is a small town situated about 15km inland from the coastal resort of Menton & close to the French border with Italy. We were based in Breil Sur Roya just a short drive through the mountains.

Briel Sur Roya to Sospel & Monte Carlo

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

A short drive to the coast.

Medieval town

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

This small medieval town feels almost Italian in character, maybe because it was part of Italy until 1860.


 

Relaxing in the town square

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

   Sospel became prosperous in the 13th century when an important salt trading route between Nice and Turin passed through the town and those using the route paid tolls to use the bridge across the BĂ©vĂ©ra river.  

Houses along the riverbanks

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

    The streets of the old town contain numerous attractive medieval houses, many with decorative painted facades.  

Toll Bridge

Sospel village near Monte Carlo 

The tower in the centre of the fortified bridge was originally the toll gate for the mules using the trade route. A bridge has stood here since at least the 13th century, although it is likely the original version was built of wood. In 1522 the wooden bridge was replaced by a stone version, much as we see it today.

Viaduct beside the village

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

You can spend many days exploring the beautiful part of France.

Coffee with Deborah

Sospel village near Monte Carlo

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Seven deadly Songkran days

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1g Duck


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