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The Travel Lounge

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The Travel Lounge

#1

Post by Timec » July 26th, 2016, 4:21 pm

I found location-specific travel topics, but I couldn’t find a general travel thread. (But maybe I just missed it.)

So here’s a place to talk about trips you’ve taken or are planning to take, get suggestions, post ruminations on the joys and stresses of travel, or whatever else.

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#2

Post by Timec » July 26th, 2016, 4:21 pm

I’ll start it off: My oldest brother and I are traveling to Australia in November for 10 days, and he’s leaving it up to me to plan what to do there. Only as I’ve started planning have I realized what an enormous place it is and how futile it is to try to and see an entire continent in a week-and-a-half.

So… Any suggestions on essential places to visit on my first—and, I guess, potentially only—trip to the Antipodes? We’re flying into Sydney, but after that it’s pretty much wide open.

We’re more into nature and hiking than history and fine dining, but I’d at least like to get to a few museums or historical sites. I don’t mind going off the beaten path either, as long as there’s something cool to see (and minimal risk of being eaten by a funnel web spider.)

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#3

Post by mightysparks » July 26th, 2016, 11:47 pm

I'm really only familiar with Perth (obviously) and I recommend not coming here because there's nothing to see or do. I've been to the Gold Coast twice when I was a kid and I liked it because of all the theme parks but we did little else. And I know nothing about Sydney or any other state so I'm of no help :P

Erm, and I guess my travel: I went to the Philippines a few months ago with a couple of friends. It was an interesting experience, but it was hot and crowded and I don't think I will ever go again. I wouldn't recommend going without someone with experience/can speak the language because that helped us heaps - even though my friend isn't completely fluent, we managed to knock about $200 AUD off a ride back to the city at one point just because he could speak the language). Kawasan Falls was nice, though it was a difficult walk up - especially for fat, unfit people (also my friend got called 'baby pig' a few times in their language). Going through the slums of a third world country was also interesting; it's just like it is in the movies. Everyone said I have a superpower because I have no sense of smell, so I assume it smells a lot. Shopping there is painful because people buy in bulk so you can potentially be queuing for hours.

Upcoming travel: Going to London in just under a month for 2 weeks. I was planning on taking a few overseas trips but with my moving house and being demoted to poor, struggling student I will no longer be able to afford this. So my main focus will be FrightFest and just enjoying being in London again.
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#4

Post by xianjiro » July 27th, 2016, 2:14 am

I'm going nowhere and fast! :P

Have fun in Australia @Timec and in London @mightysparks!

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#5

Post by Lilarcor » July 27th, 2016, 2:32 am

Currently in Singapore! Staying here for two weeks. Cleanest place I have ever been for sure (gum is banned for example to prevent gum on streets). Food is absolutely amazing and so varied as they take inspiration from all corners of the world and make their own delicious spin on things.

I am heading to northern Italy in the first week of October for the Pordenone Silent Film Festival. Really excited about this. As I will take part in the collegium there hotel accommodation expenses are covered, yay!

Might go to Hong Kong around new years if I still have money by then.
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#6

Post by AdamH » July 27th, 2016, 2:23 pm

I'm in Spain just now. Started off in Torremolinos/Malaga and now I'm visiting other friends again in Madrid and Ávila. I would like to see more of Spain at some point like Barcelona. I've been to Madrid, Ávila, Salamanca, Toledo, Cuenca, Torremolinos and Malaga in the last couple of years.

My grandparents used to live in Torremolinos. I went there twice on holiday with my family when I was a kid. The last time was summer 2002. Last Saturday, I walked up from the beach to my nan's old house. I couldn't really see anything because of the wall/plants but it was a strange feeling being there again after 14 years especially after my nan and dad died late last year and both holidays to Torremolinos had involved them. I found myself suddenly thinking, as I approached the house, I wish that they would e there and others in my family and I'd be walking into the house and into the old memories...wasn't really expecting to think that. Just happened suddenly.

It's been 40+ degrees at some points in the holiday.

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#7

Post by cinephage » July 27th, 2016, 4:25 pm

AdamH on Jul 27 2016, 08:23:34 AM wrote:I'm in Spain just now. Started off in Torremolinos/Malaga and now I'm visiting other friends again in Madrid and Ávila. I would like to see more of Spain at some point like Barcelona. I've been to Madrid, Ávila, Salamanca, Toledo, Cuenca, Torremolinos and Malaga in the last couple of years.

My grandparents used to live in Torremolinos. I went there twice on holiday with my family when I was a kid. The last time was summer 2002. Last Saturday, I walked up from the beach to my nan's old house. I couldn't really see anything because of the wall/plants but it was a strange feeling being there again after 14 years especially after my nan and dad died late last year and both holidays to Torremolinos had involved them. I found myself suddenly thinking, as I approached the house, I wish that they would e there and others in my family and I'd be walking into the house and into the old memories...wasn't really expecting to think that. Just happened suddenly.

It's been 40+ degrees at some points in the holiday.

That's where I was last year. Malaga/Torremolinos was nice, but I was really thrilled in Grenada. Wonderful city, with incredible places (the Alhambra !!).
The heat was unbearable, though, especially in the beginning, as I hadn't though about it and rented a place with no A/C. We had to move before we really enjoyed our trip...

My next planned trip should be end of october/beginning of november, in Mexico. I'll take my daughter to discover el dia de los muertos.
1 week in Yucatan, 1 week in Mexico City. As soon as I get the ticket, I'll start planning all kind of activities and visits.
I'm still open to ideas, but have already have a few ideas in mind : I'll swim in a cenote, visit Chichen Itza, visit a chocolate factory, try spend a day fishing i high sea, and another snorkelling in a beautiful spot. Of course, I will visit famously haunted doll Island.
I'll try to go to the Cinemateca once (I always do that whenever I'm abroad), even though I don't speak spanish...

Looking forward to it. :party:

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#8

Post by Timec » July 27th, 2016, 4:53 pm

I think my 2014 visit to Spain and Portugal (and, briefly, Morocco) might be the best trip I’ve ever been on. Lisbon, Seville, Granada, and Cordoba were all wonderful places to visit. I still daydream about someday moving to the area.

I was there in January, so I found the weather pretty much perfect. We got a little bit of rain, but mostly it was sunny and it hovered around the 50s-60s (Fahrenheit) the whole time—which is my ideal temperature range. As an added bonus, a lot of the tourist sites were almost empty that time of year.

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#9

Post by Timec » July 27th, 2016, 5:07 pm

mightysparks on Jul 26 2016, 05:47:54 PM wrote:I'm really only familiar with Perth (obviously) and I recommend not coming here because there's nothing to see or do. I've been to the Gold Coast twice when I was a kid and I liked it because of all the theme parks but we did little else. And I know nothing about Sydney or any other state so I'm of no help :P
I read a little bit about Perth—mainly about how it’s one of the most isolated cities in the world.

There seem to be a few potentially interesting nature-y things to do in the general vicinity (Pinnacles Desert, quokkas on Rottnest Island), but yeah… I’m pretty sure I won’t be making it that far out.

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#10

Post by jvv » July 27th, 2016, 5:34 pm

Timec on Jul 26 2016, 10:21:54 AM wrote:I’ll start it off: My oldest brother and I are traveling to Australia in November for 10 days, and he’s leaving it up to me to plan what to do there. Only as I’ve started planning have I realized what an enormous place it is and how futile it is to try to and see an entire continent in a week-and-a-half.

So… Any suggestions on essential places to visit on my first—and, I guess, potentially only—trip to the Antipodes? We’re flying into Sydney, but after that it’s pretty much wide open.

We’re more into nature and hiking than history and fine dining, but I’d at least like to get to a few museums or historical sites. I don’t mind going off the beaten path either, as long as there’s something cool to see (and minimal risk of being eaten by a funnel web spider.)
10 days is a really, really short time for Australia.

Here is an example of a 10 day itinerary that hits quite a few of the highlights, but you spend a lot of time in airports and only get a taste of each place.

Personally I would go for something less hectic, either going south (Sydney-Melbourne) or north (Sydney-Cairns).

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#11

Post by Timec » July 27th, 2016, 6:50 pm

Yeah, I know it’s not nearly enough time—and that first itinerary does seem a bit hectic. My brother says he’d prefer to keep a leisurely pace, so I’m thinking we’ll stick to two or maybe three cities.

Cairns is tempting, because I would like to see the rain forest and the Great Barrier Reef before it dies completely.

Thanks for the links—I’m going to do more research into Cairns and Melbourne.

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#12

Post by Leopardi » July 28th, 2016, 1:41 am

Timec on Jul 27 2016, 10:53:26 AM wrote:I think my 2014 visit to Spain and Portugal (and, briefly, Morocco) might be the best trip I’ve ever been on. Lisbon, Seville, Granada, and Cordoba were all wonderful places to visit. I still daydream about someday moving to the area.

I was there in January, so I found the weather pretty much perfect. We got a little bit of rain, but mostly it was sunny and it hovered around the 50s-60s (Fahrenheit) the whole time—which is my ideal temperature range. As an added bonus, a lot of the tourist sites were almost empty that time of year.
I did pretty much exactly what you did (except I didn't get to Portugal, it was all Spain and Morocco) in January 2013 and I couldn't agree more. I don't really like the heat, so the temperature in southern Spain was perfect at that time of year for me, and it only rained once I think (maybe twice) in the three weeks I was there. That, combined with cheaper airfare/accommodation and virtually no tourists and I was completely sold on off-season travel. If I wasn't so busy with work right up to the end of this year I'd be back there in a second!

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#13

Post by mightysparks » July 28th, 2016, 1:44 am

Timec on Jul 27 2016, 12:50:17 PM wrote: Yeah, I know it’s not nearly enough time—and that first itinerary does seem a bit hectic. My brother says he’d prefer to keep a leisurely pace, so I’m thinking we’ll stick to two or maybe three cities.

Cairns is tempting, because I would like to see the rain forest and the Great Barrier Reef before it dies completely.

Thanks for the links—I’m going to do more research into Cairns and Melbourne.
I've never even heard of a rainforest in Cairns so I dunno how great that is. I'd love to see the Great Barrier Reef so I'd definitely see that if I were you.
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#14

Post by blocho » July 28th, 2016, 1:52 am

A buddy of mine went to that rainforest near Cairns last year. He loved it. He is a birder, though, so he probably would like anywhere with birds he hasn't seen before.

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#15

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » July 30th, 2016, 9:18 am

Planning a vacation in the US but don't know where to go?
Here's a handy guide from the 70s https://books.google.ca/books?id=nVUEAA ... e&q&f=true
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#16

Post by mightysparks » August 5th, 2016, 5:23 am

I'm trying to decide what to do with the last 6 days of my UK trip. FrightFest finishes on the 29th, then I have the 30th-4th free to do things. I'm on a fairly tight budget now, so I'm sort of limited with what I can do and what I can visit. I've seen most of the big things in London, so I wanted to do day trips to different places but I might not be able to afford that now. I may be able to afford some bus/train trips in the UK if they're cheap. Any suggestions on places I should see or things I should do while I'm there (that are pretty cheap)?
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#17

Post by jvv » August 5th, 2016, 6:39 am

101 free things to do in London

For cheap bus tickets you could take a look at National Express.
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#18

Post by afirm » September 7th, 2016, 7:11 pm

I'm also going to Australia, but not until March. Flying into Sydney and staying for 10 days. I've only been to Darwin before, so I'm looking forward to it. I think we will do some hiking in the Blue Mountains and perhaps climb Mount Kosciuszko.
Before that some of my highlights are Prague, Seattle and Longyearbyen.

Does anybody else use FlightDiary to keep track of your travels? It creates a nice map and provides you with some fun statistics.
http://flightdiary.net/afirm

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#19

Post by Lammetje » September 7th, 2016, 7:38 pm

afirm on Sep 7 2016, 01:11:53 PM wrote:Does anybody else use FlightDiary to keep track of your travels? It creates a nice map and provides you with some fun statistics.
http://flightdiary.net/afirm
I do now, thanks for the tip. :)
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#20

Post by Lilarcor » September 18th, 2016, 8:59 pm

What film stuff is worth seeing in Amsterdam? I have six hours between two flights (so I guess, realistically speaking, 4 or so hours to spend?) and I have been eyeing (hehe) out the EYE museum, but would like to know if there are other things worth checking out too.

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#21

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » September 18th, 2016, 9:14 pm

If you only have 4 hours between flights the EYE museum is not worth it, plus its an extra short ferry trip which will cut into your time. With 4 hours I'd say just walk around the city. It's a cool unique city to walk around in with neat architecture. The red light district is a short walk from the central station and you can go from there.

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#22

Post by bal3x » September 18th, 2016, 9:27 pm

Yep, 4 hours seems too short a time for serious museum tours unless you're a big fan of the Old Masters in which case Rijksmuseum would probably be of interest. Otherwise, how about a short boat trip? Another option is to rent a bike or just walk around as PA suggests. Great city indeed.

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#23

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » September 18th, 2016, 9:46 pm

The Rijksmuseum is a wonderful museum for which 4 hours is woefully short. The EYE museum is really small so 4 hours is more than enough for it, it's just not interesting enough to be the one thing you do in Amsterdam.
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#24

Post by Local Hero -- aka MestnyiGeroi » September 18th, 2016, 11:18 pm

PeacefulAnarchy on Sep 18 2016, 03:46:17 PM wrote:The Rijksmuseum is a wonderful museum for which 4 hours is woefully short. The EYE museum is really small so 4 hours is more than enough for it, it's just not interesting enough to be the one thing you do in Amsterdam.
Other short museums: the Van Gogh Museum, the Rembrandt House, the Anne Frank House.

But I agree with PA: with just four hours, I'd walk around the center of the city.

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#25

Post by jvv » September 18th, 2016, 11:33 pm

Agreed, walking around the city and maybe taking a one hour canal boat trip is the best way to spend four hours in Amsterdam.

If you still want to do something movie related, you could try to find some of these locations while walking around.

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#26

Post by Local Hero -- aka MestnyiGeroi » September 18th, 2016, 11:40 pm

jvv on Sep 18 2016, 05:33:31 PM wrote:Agreed, walking around the city and maybe taking a one hour canal boat trip is the best way to spend four hours in Amsterdam.

If you still want to do something movie related, you could try to find some of these locations while walking around.
Ah, yeah -- I did the canal tour, which is a quick way to see a cross-section of the city from a different angle. It also helped me realize that cats essentially run Amsterdam and the people are just facilitators.

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#27

Post by Lilarcor » September 19th, 2016, 1:50 am

Thanks for the suggestions! I will do the museums another time then. I can take an easy walk around, do a boat trip, maybe eat somewhere nice but cheap and have a good beer.

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#28

Post by Lammetje » September 19th, 2016, 4:53 pm

Lilarcor on Sep 18 2016, 07:50:19 PM wrote:Thanks for the suggestions! I will do the museums another time then. I can take an easy walk around, do a boat trip, maybe eat somewhere nice but cheap and have a good beer.
Have fun! Speaking of walking, will your avatar ever be animated again? :P
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#29

Post by Lilarcor » September 19th, 2016, 5:15 pm

Lammetje on Sep 19 2016, 10:53:40 AM wrote:
Lilarcor on Sep 18 2016, 07:50:19 PM wrote:Thanks for the suggestions! I will do the museums another time then. I can take an easy walk around, do a boat trip, maybe eat somewhere nice but cheap and have a good beer.
Have fun! Speaking of walking, will your avatar ever be animated again? :P
:lol: Hopefully soon enough!

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#30

Post by Cippenham » December 11th, 2016, 7:03 pm

I see from March 2018 you can fly non stop Perth to London in 17 hours with Quantas, that is not soon and could be expensive though
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#31

Post by metaller » December 12th, 2016, 11:45 am

Holy hell. Flying coach for 17 hours sounds like torture to me. Torture I would have to pay for myself...
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#32

Post by AdamH » May 29th, 2017, 4:27 pm

Anyone been to Luxembourg?

Trying to find somewhere cheap to travel to for a weekend and it came up as one of the cheapest for flights.

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#33

Post by Lammetje » May 29th, 2017, 5:09 pm

AdamH on May 29 2017, 10:27:03 AM wrote:Anyone been to Luxembourg?

Trying to find somewhere cheap to travel to for a weekend and it came up as one of the cheapest for flights.
I've been to Luxembourg and Echternach. The capital is worth a visit, and I can definitely recommend Trier (Germany), which is quite close to the border.
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#34

Post by Carmel1379 » May 29th, 2017, 5:27 pm

AdamH on May 29 2017, 10:27:03 AM wrote:Anyone been to Luxembourg?

Trying to find somewhere cheap to travel to for a weekend and it came up as one of the cheapest for flights.
Yeah, for a cheap weekend visit it's fairly worthy and especially good for people who're keen on walking, since it's so small that you can visit and get across everywhere relevant on foot, from the Philharmonie through the casemate to the centre.

If you're also planning on travelling within the country, then there is a town you might want to look into called Vianden, it's situated on a valley and river, and it has a castle.

Lammetje recommended Trier, so I'll mention Metz in France, which is close to Luxembourg.
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#35

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » May 30th, 2017, 9:08 am

5 days into my Australia trip, full list of uniquely Australian fauna seen so far:
A handful of dead roadkill wombats and kangaroos and a platypus burrow and footprint. 0 live animals that I couldn't see elsewhere (hundreds of cows and sheep and crows, though).

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#36

Post by mightysparks » May 30th, 2017, 10:04 am

Kangaroos are pretty common near any bushlands, I've never seen a platypus or wombat outside of a zoo. Aside from kangaroos the most common Aussie stuff would be boring things like spiders, especially red backs, and snakes.
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#37

Post by sol » May 30th, 2017, 10:10 am

PeacefulAnarchy on May 30 2017, 03:08:31 AM wrote:5 days into my Australia trip, full list of uniquely Australian fauna seen so far:
A handful of dead roadkill wombats and kangaroos and a platypus burrow and footprint. 0 live animals that I couldn't see elsewhere (hundreds of cows and sheep and crows, though).
There's an area very close to where I live in which kangaroos tend to come out at night. Occasionally I see one jumping across the road at night (which gives me a heart attack when driving, since you automatically think it is a kid or a dog until you realise that at such a speed it couldn't be). Would be happy to give you a "kangaroo tour" if you come over to my side of the country.
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#38

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » May 30th, 2017, 12:13 pm

I'm sure I'll see some kangaroos. Don't really expect to see a platypus though it'd be cool. Would like to see a Koala too. Still here for a few weeks and while some of it will be in cities enough of it should be outside that I'll get my chance. I'm happy to not to have run into killer snakes and spiders, though.

I won't make it to the west so I can't take you up on the offer, but I appreciate it. Trip has been nice so far.

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#39

Post by sol » May 30th, 2017, 12:18 pm

No problem. :thumbsup: Offer stands if you're ever down this way again.

By the way, I have lived in Australia all my life, and I don't think I have ever seen a platypus either. :huh:
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#40

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » May 30th, 2017, 12:23 pm

We only found the platypus burrows by accident, some small road sign pointed to a platypus viewing area. There were burrows and what I assume is platypus poo everywhere, but no animals in sight besides some birds. Supposedly they only come out at dawn and dusk and we couldn't stay til dark.

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