Breezy holiday getaway to the Bahamas? Rugged jungle trek through the Colombian Amazon? Elegant wedding in charming East Coast, Nova Scotia? Blisteringly beautiful honeymoon in Morocco? Knockout modelling photo shoots and drop-dead gorgeous glamour shots? You get the idea. The options are endless with, what we refer to now as, our “Swiss Army Jackknife” of compact cameras. Continue reading

The Time-Tested Jackknife Of Cameras

The land of romantic mystery, devastating beauty, enchanting communities, and uncharted territory – navigating south into the lungs of the Earth, this great road ruptures into three different countries and divides into seemingly infinite tributaries of the Amazon Basin. Located 800km from the nearest highway, Leticia is the true frontier of Colombia’s Amazonas Department. And with little information on the area, not even the origin of its present name, the outpost town keeps its rustic atmosphere and gilded legend as a mysterious gateway to the jungle, worthy of the Indiana Jones’ and Terence McKenna’s. Continue reading

The Frontier of Amazonas: Leticia

Every year in this colossal, cobbled square, hundreds of astronomy enthusiasts and stargazers meet in January to share in their passions for the universe, exchange new telescope technologies, and revel in one of the most breathtakingly ancient views of the distant heavens. Once also a sacred court for native indigenous communities to gather and study the stars, Villa de Leyva’s Plaza Mayor has been a mutual observatory since the Pre-Columbian days. And apart from its splendid stage below a magnificent dark–sky preserve, the mountain–valley vista has been seemingly enough to lure life here for more than a million years. Continue reading

More Than a Million Years: Villa de Leyva

Bogotá is a city of many names – Athens of South America, Gotham of Colombia, Lady of the Andes – but nevertheless, frequently misjudged and vastly underrated as the most visceral of urban adventures here in Colombia. So many vacationers on the northern coast of Cartagena, wading the sapphire shores – so many nomads drinking and dancing amongst the tunnels and hills of magical Medellin… but much fewer getting their hands dirty in the sprawling authenticity of this Andean capital. Continue reading

Lady of the Andes: Bogotá

Paradise is a worn-out word in the backpacker’s sphere of many trodden paths, often superfluous in tourist-saturated hovels, but not in this hideaway. In Salento, the Valley of the Palms, Colombia bares preciously this sanctuary of vivid Andean vistas, enchanting village alleys, and a measure of timeless peace unique even to colorful Colombia. But the risk of traveling here is well whispered amongst backpackers, trapping the footloose and seducing the restless – You’ll never want to leave. Continue reading

Paradise in the Heart of Colombia

A tropical junction of barters and busses blends into coniferous, alpine expat territory painted like a Salvador Dali with luminous floral orchards cut by a mountain stream and cross-cultural communities. In Boquete, Panama – near the southern border of Costa Rica, locals, travelers, and expatriates experience a special crossroads above the clouds – though only the sturdy and adventurous will climb to see it. Such rare sights on this planet yield the kind of sensations that move the human spirit to a sort of ecstasy. It is like the rambler’s catharsis in seeking more complexity than the mere picturesque – Without tethers or railings, the climb to the summit of Volcan Baru reminds you what it truly feels like to be alive. Continue reading

Crossroads Above the Clouds

The Big Island may be Hawaii’s rabbit hole of tourist destinations, and in this case tourist is comprised of some of the most interesting transients to travel the Earth – from backpackers to burnouts, hippies, junkies, shamans, crooks, professors, nudists, and countless other charismatic identities who are exploring, hedonisting, hiding and thriving in what seems like the last of the Wild West. All of those old characters upon withered pages and the silver screen inhabiting that arid frontier – they all seemed so wonderfully deranged and enlightened at the same time, but with their problems of near-anarchy came also the rare delights of that Lewis Carroll metaphor for the unknown and magically disorienting hole – Freedom from the norm, and a vast measure of beautiful timelessness, upon which it seems seldom to pass. Residents and travelers of the Big Island know the feeling – 20 years and 20 minutes can feel the same. Continue reading

Wild West of the Pacific

Nestled upon the summits of the Bricklieve Mountains, the ancient tombs of Carrowkeel still stand in all their ghostly glory. First to excavate and survey in 1911, R.S. Macalister was the consequently the first man to enter the Cairns in thousands of years. The megalithic complex was built between 3200-2400 BC, thus astonishingly predating the Pyramids of Giza by 500-800 years. Many may overlook Ireland as a source of rich, ancient history, but of all the remarkable prehistoric civilizations from Europe and abroad, this mystical island of Gaelic myth and legend protects a mysterious air of Druidic culture. Continue reading

Irish Tombs Older Than Giza

Inexorable – Impossible to stop or prevent. How many have walked this path whose last glimpse of life was that orange vermillion steel, the 245-ft high view of the San Francisco Bay? According to the city’s Transportation District, 33 had leapt from the bridge in the year 2015 alone, and this is a number that has increased by five times as many since 2000, making it the most used suicide site aside from the Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge in China. Statistically, it is also from the east side facing the foggy city the vast many choose to jump, but how many have walked this path with such intentions? And just how many have been saved? Continue reading

The Golden Gate: East of Eden