travel

travel May 27, 2017

San Juan, Puerto Rico

“Port-o Reek-a,” says the woman behind us, as we disembark the plane at Luis Muñoz Marín International. “It’s Port-o Reek-o,” her husband corrects, smiling at the American Airlines flight attendant. “Isn’t it?” The flight attendant looks from one of...

travel May 13, 2017

Hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu

“Porter!”, comes the cry from behind. This alert from fellow hikers is a regular punctuation mark to my puffing and panting along the otherwise silent trail. I continue plodding along, but keep left, so the men we rely on for all but the thin air we...

travel March 25, 2017

The Museum of Jurassic Technology

From the moment I step into the Museum of Jurassic Technology, it’s clear not all is quite what it seems. Set on a nondescript block in Culver City in Los Angeles, it looks like no other museum I’ve seen, encompassing an...

travel April 14, 2017

The cats of Kuching, Malaysia

Kuching is the sound of one ringgit landing in a sampan driver’s money pouch on the languid banks of the Sarawak River. The largest city in the Malaysian chunk of Borneo, Kuching is a word with a colour of its own: Christmas bauble gold. It is the...

travel March 11, 2017

Blanco Renaissance Museum, Ubud, Bali

The first thing that strikes me is the solitude. Even here in Ubud – miles from the clutter of Kuta, the din of Denpasar – there’s an ever-present tension to Bali. Although it’s known as a centre of art and culture rather than...

travel March 4, 2017

Shwedagon Pagoda, Myanmar

The spires of Myanmar’s most sacred site reach like dozens of golden fingers towards the heavens. Towering above all else is the Shwedagon Pagoda’s glistering central dome, or stupa, reputedly enshrining four hairs of the...

travel February 25, 2017

Nights out in Glasgow, Scotland

Pavement and pub fuse in a way that supports The Scotia’s claim to be Glasgow’s oldest. Built in 1792, it is close to the River Clyde. The ceiling is low and the wood is ruddy – it’s like drinking in an overturned boat. The...

travel February 17, 2017

Polar bear spotting in Churchill, Canada

It’s late October in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area. The edge of Hudson Bay, which takes a massive bite out of northern Canada, is freezing up, but not enough for the bears to end their months-long fast on land and...

travel February 11, 2017

Santiago, Chile

I am sat in 40-degree sunshine in the cafe of the main cultural centre of Santiago, Chile. Just 20 hours ago I was in pre-inauguration New York – snowbound, woe-drowned New York. I’m here looking for acts for the Melbourne...

travel February 4, 2017

Shin Hinomoto, Tokyo

Every few minutes, rumbling comes from the vaulted ceiling as a bullet train passes on its way to Kyoto and beyond, with a more frequent rattle from the Yamanote-sen, the green circle line around the limits of inner Tokyo...

travel January 28, 2017

A funeral at Melk Abbey, Austria

“This sure is a quiet town.” I’m almost whispering, unwilling to have my voice ring out in the silent streets. “Where is everybody?” It’s about seven in the evening, and as we climb the zigzag pathways to the great church on...