Tag Archives: Capital Cities

Bogotá

Bogotá is big. A city of over ten million people. Ten million!!! It’s a gritty working city, full of graffiti and certainly not known for its colonial charm. A trip up the Monserrate cable car for an overview of the metropolis provides a small clue as to the scale of the place, but never let it be said that we judge a book by its cover.  We’re here to give Bogotá a fair crack-of-the-whip and we find it a nice city to mooch about! Also, we’re here to do some gadget shopping. Hmmm… sounds expensive!  Bogotá BlogBogotá blog Continue reading

Guyana: Tolls and TV Stardom

Driving into a new country you inevitably find yourself comparing it to the one you have just left. What’s different? What’s the same? Is the food (or more importantly, the beer) any better or worse? We really enjoyed our time in Suriname with the drone and the jungle kids, now in our north Guyana blog we find: (i) TV stardom, and (ii) a very expensive car ferry.
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So… Suriname!

Suriname, Suriname… where exactly is that? Near Vietnam? Nope. Next door to Ghana? Errr, no. It’s on the north coast of South America, above Brazil, snuggled comfortably between French Guiana and Guyana. It’s in the northern Amazon basin, so it’s hot, humid and – at the risk of stating the bleedin’ obvious – jungly!  We’ve been here a month now and one of our highlights has been entertaining jungle kids with their first ever drone sighting (click here). But Suriname has some history, great wildlife and other stuff to see too, including some interesting ‘bird-cage culture’. Here’s the Suriname travel blog…

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French Guiana… bonjour!

Just over the bridge from Brazil Amazon and… politics! Overlanders are always best advised to avoid national politics as they travel, but sometimes things just jump in your face. French Guiana is an overseas department of mainland France. It’s officially part of the EU, it has the Euro currency and, we find out to our cost, the people have the same French propensity for road blockades and labour strikes when they feel hard done-by! Continue reading

Mission: Middle Brazil

A brewery, a palace, a gold mine, a football stadium, a police selfie, a floating angel, broken glow-plug, a desert lagoon and a foot swallowing sand-bubble. Our last post saw Rio and fab beaches, now we’re on a mission to see the great mix of middle Brazil, with the added dilemma of so much to see, so little time!
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Paraguay

The Chaco… a chuffing big, flat plain stretching east from the Andes. Covering eastern Bolivia, north-east Argentina, a bit of south-west Brazil and much of Paraguay… it’s big. After the descent from the Bolivian altiplano, it’s a long, long, straight road reaching over 800km to Asuncion. We expect the Chaco to be hot. Turns out… our introduction to Paraguay is not just hot, but damned hot! And what’s Paraguay all about beyond the Chaco? Read on in the Paraguay blog…
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Coasting North

Back at sea-level! Yehhy! We do love the mountains, but life at over 12,000 ft can provide a few wobbles in your physiology. It’s a welcome change to now have the soothing sound of rolling waves and the smell of the salty sea air. The drive from Cusco down to the coast is a long and painfully winding road, but finally we’re down at the Pacific coast, back on the Pan-American super-highway, looking forward to following it north all the way to Ecuador.

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La Paz

Approaching La Paz we have a mixed impression. The city sits in a spectacularly steep sided valley surrounded by stunning snow-capped mountains. Nice. But we also see a blanket of ‘clag’ hanging over its skyline. Not nice. Emission standards still have some way to go around here! We’re not great fans of mega-cities but we do have a few practicalities to sort out here and we are just a teeny bit interested to have a look around.

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Santiago

It’s a happening place, Santiago. A sprawling capital city of six million people and almost certainly the most modern and ‘westernised’ city on the continent. That’s not to say it is without culture, history and character – it has these in spades too. We had spent a week in this cool city before our little detour to Easter Island and got a feel for the place. Cuthbert had waited patiently at Santiago airport for us to return, but we still had things to see and stuff to get done before hitting the road again. We had found a marvellous central but peaceful and secure park-up spot by one of the city’s parks with a friendly guard-chap, so it felt a bit like coming home when we returned.

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Buenos Aires or BA?

Street art - BA-style

Street art – BA-style

Those in-the-know casually refer to it as ‘BA’ but until we get to know each other better, we’ll start with the more respectful ‘Buenos Aires’ 🙂  It is another of our ‘Bucket List’ cities that we have wanted to visit for many years. I read the story of Eva Peron some years before it was brought into popular culture by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd-Webber and was looking forward to seeing the city’s ‘Evita Landmarks’. But although Eva Peron (arguably after Diego ‘Hand of God’ Maradona) is the world’s most famous Argentinian, there is much more to Buenos Aires than her memory.

On the outskirts of the city we spotted below us from the fly-over, a ‘Museo de las Malvinas’. Hmmm… this could be Continue reading

To Montevideo… by freight ship

Montevideo from Hamburg by cargo ship… Done!  Yes, we’ve spent October 2015 on a freight ship Europe to Montevideo. We’re bringing our camper-truck Cuthbert to Uruguay to start our tour of the Americas. No scrubbing of decks, peeling of potatoes or climbing of rigging – we took one of six fare-paying cabins on the Italian Grimaldi freight ship ‘Grande Nigeria’. And in anticipation of the obvious question… we’re doing it because we can, and because it seemed like a good idea at the time.

Freight ship Europe to Montevideo

All aboard the Grande Nigeria to Montevideo!!

So was it such a good idea… over five weeks at sea with minimal facilities and no internet??!! Well… at least we had plenty of time to write all this bog-blurb stuff 🙂  Read on and see what you think. Continue reading