30 days to go!

Whilst I take some time out from the wonderfully exciting world of travel insurance, small-print and locating some yellow fever in Suffolk to inject, I thought I’d actually spend some time getting excited about the impending 8 month trip. I was thinking to myself about all the places we’d be visiting and the unknown gems that we’ll hopefully uncover and write about, but there is, of course, thanks to the marvel of books and the technological era, a wealth of information we already know about many far-flung places we’ve never visited. It is because of this background knowledge that we have planned to visit some of these places. So I’ve put together a list of the top 5 places that we’re planning to visit and attempted to remember who first planted the idea.

So, in true 21st century, list-crazy fashion (I’m so net-chic), here are the top 5 places that I’m most excited about.


-5-  Macchu Picchu, Peru

Providing the solid, yet ancient, foundations for this stellar list is the nation of Peru and her Incan civilisation’s Macchu Picchu. As a snap-happy twenty-something, the prospect of shooting this place at sunrise (albeit after the strenuous vigour of the Inca Trail) does promise to be spectacular at the least! Whilst this is an Olley original idea, my friend Will, who has been a superb source of travelling wisdom has provided extra motivation to complete the trek. I’ve been advised that chomping down on the coca plant will provide that extra ‘oomph’ needed to mount the summit.

-4-  Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia

Slam-Dunkin’ in at number 4 is the Bolivian Salt Flats. I’d spotted this area whilst doing my research and was debating about whether or not it would be a waste of time; it looked flat, it looked barren. My good, and now well traveled, pal Mike, from University, could not talk highly enough of the place, but his having lived in Bromley, I assumed his tolerance for excitement was quite low 🙂 . Once I’d seen one of his photos however, it was sold and the tour, with which I was not convinced, will be booked once we are out there (apparently it’s cheaper this way – thanks Mike!).

-3- Kinabatangan, Malaysia

Cruising smack bang into the middle of this list is the Kinabatangan River in Malaysia. One of our trips that has already been planned is one to the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre, in Sabah, Malaysia. The folks convinced us to book this tour and are coming out to visit us for this tour and the chance to see some of the exotic wildlife along a river cruise is going to be incredible. Again, plenty of opportunities to practise some wildlife photography.

Pig-tailed Macaque drinking water, Kinabatangan, Borneo | © C S Ling

-2-  Waitomo, New Zealand

Steam-rolling its way into 2nd spot is the Glow Worm Caves at Waitomo. I discovered these on a Pinterest trawl and added them to my board to remind me of the research I’d done and what not to miss! They look incredible. I have a number of incredible sights in New Zealand over on my Pinterest board. In theory, but against the established rules of this list, the whole of New Zealand should probably be at this spot. In fact, from the many people that I’ve spoken to about New Zealand, I could probably do a top 100 of just New Zealand! An old Schoolfriend of mine, Aaron, is currently back after a year in NZ and is going through the stages of getting permanent residency out there. From what he’s said, the whole country is a picture opportunity. If you stopped at every incredible scenic point, you’d never get anywhere!

Glowworm Caves in Waitomo, New Zealand

-1-  Mumbai, India

Taking this list by storm, is the capital city of the state of Maharashtra. Whilst I know this is a huge divergence from the ‘traditional’ beautiful tourist destinations, I’ve always been captivated by the tumultuous and intense way of life in India. I’ve always been fascinated by India, ever since I was young and even more so with Mumbai after reading Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. This was lent to me by a colleague and friend of mine at Burtons, a fellow Paul. After feeling like I used to lose myself in the depths of the slums in Mumbai every morning on the tube for about a month (it’s a huge book!), I feel like I might even be able to recognise it…

Shantaram - Leopolds Cafe, Bombay!

This environment is far different than the previous home. How can environment and shelter influence the nature v. nurture debate?

If I manage to catch the start of the IPL season, then I will be, quite possibly, the happiest man on the planet!

EXCITING NEWS – You will all be salivating at the prospect of this: a forthcoming Guest Blog post. Yes that’s right! I will be featured this weekend over at The Taste Chase! So pootle over and check it out to see what its all about. Knives and forks at the ready!

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6 thoughts on “30 days to go!”

  1. Ah Waitomo!! It’s AMAZING!!!!! I forgot about that place, the caves are incredible and the town is tiny. A hostel, a shop and a pub is pretty mucb it lol. Try and get to San Pedro in northern Chile as well dude, oh smd Rotarua in NZ and Franz Josef and Milford Sound and Kaikoura and Nelson oh god, just go everywhere!!!!

  2. It’s not really cheaper, I think you had annoyed me when I told about it. To be honest I absolutely hated it – disgusting and boring and freezing cold. It was a joke telling you to go there!!!!

    1. Well, by the looks of the image you let me use, it looks horrific! I can’t believe it’s even in my list. You were annoying me when I wrote it, so I put it in as a joke. 😉

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