Tokyo, THE return: Episode One

tokyo sumo training

After living 7 in Tokyo (10 years for Kiwi) and 3 years after having quit Japan, we finally returned for a long weekend.  I love to read the impressions of travelers to Japan, who describe unique aspects of Japan or the Japanese that I used to experienced every day, and I was wondering how we would feel to […]

How to meet the Japanese imperial family

Today, Voyagista reveals her secret on where we can meet the Japanese Imperial Family … For those not familiar with the Japanese Imperial family: today the Emperor has no political power and fills a symbolic role in Japanese society (as it has done at other times in Japan’s history). The Emperor is no longer regarded […]

Kyoto and the Torii tunnels of Fushimi Inari

Fushimi Inari

What is a tori? The tori is a traditional and spiritual Japanese gate. [Wikipedia definition] Fushimi Inari is THE temple of toriis in Japan. The red gates are everywhere in the temple grounds – there are alleys of toriis, gatherings of toriis, solitary toriis and so on. Fushimi Inari is also a temple that is […]

Hong Kong’s Venice: Tai O from every angle

Tai o

In Hong Kong there are few vestiges of the architectural past that remain: they build, then demolish, then reconstruct…newer and higher. There are not many HK neighborhoods remaining where we can take a good look at the past but we have discovered at least one – here you can be transported back to the time […]

Switzerland – Wengen, a summer paradise for the kids

wengen children

Wengen is a marvelous place and it is even more so if you have kids to entertain: there is a lot to keep them busy. If you thought it is much better to be in the mountains in winter (like me) I will offer you some reasons to think otherwise:  1. Wengen is a car-free […]

Mexico – The Pirates of Campeche

streets of campeche

It has been a long time since pirates threatened the fortified walls of Campeche but you can still experience this époque through the town’s well preserved architecture of the period. The streets of Campeche are lined by brightly colored houses of the period accompanied by their owner’s humbug volkswagens of every hue. For us, Campeche is also a […]

Switzerland: Truemmelbach, Lauterbrunnen’s hidden mountain waterfall

Lauterbrunnen waterfall

You are on a summer holiday in the Swiss mountains… and it is raining. Two grandparents, two parents and two  kids locked up inside for the day isn’t going to end well… but the options for escape are limited. However, Voyagista has a plan and it involves more precipitation: A visit to a powerful waterfall cascading through the […]

Discovering the mysteries of Chinese medicine

Guangzhou market

In Guangzhou, there is a famous market where you can find anything you need to cure your ailments based on Chinese medicine practices: sea horse, insects, deer antler, snake, turtle, giant mushroom, starfish… and many more dried ingredients we couldn’t recognize when we visited.  It was a very interesting place and I really enjoyed the […]

At the top of New Zealand: Northland

cape reinga

A benefit of being married to a Kiwi is that I get to visit New Zealand at a leisurely pace, discovering one area each time we go down under… This New Zealand summer we toured Northland, more specifically the “Far North” of Northland on the North Island. As the name suggests it is the top […]

Swimming with whale sharks in the Philippines

Whale Shark Oslob Philippines

Our relationship with whale sharks has been off and on… our first attempt to build something took place at Coral Bay, Western Australia. We had done everything we could to make it work: we went during the good season (March to June) and we used a boat that had a very high success rate for […]