Tag Archives: cruise

A Polar Plunge on Deception Island, Antarctica

the first brave soul to enter the water

Despite the chilly wind and -4 degrees Celsius temperature, I’m standing out in the open, with nothing but my bikini on. I’ve peeled off my parka, fleece, hat, socks and boots, and I’m bare feet on the black volcanic sand on Deception Island. Without much time to hesitate, I dive into the freezing waters hand-in-hand [...]

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Penguins, Seals and Whales: Wildlife in Antarctica

Observing the penguins at close proximity

Etched at the bottom of the world, Antarctica is as far south and remote as you can get. The seventh continent, as some call it, is covered in icebergs, glaciers, mountains and thick layers of snow.  At first glance, Antarctica appears vast and empty – with expansive ice fields stretching for miles without anything or [...]

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Island-Hopping off Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast: from Dubrovnik to Split

Dubrovnik

For years, we’d been hearing about Croatia and the sparkling Dalmatian Coast. The Balkan country had always appealed to us, with the inviting Adriatic Sea, beautiful coastal towns, and cuisine with Mediterranean flair. This summer, while exploring the Balkans on a train journey with Eurail, we took the opportunity to visit Croatia. To explore the [...]

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Waterfalls and Lush Jungles: Fiji’s Garden Island, Taveuni

Driving on the roads of Taveuni

By Day Four of our heritage cruise voyage, our luck with the weather gods had run out. That morning, we awoke to pouring tropical rains and a sky covered with thick dark grey clouds. The island of Taveuni appeared outside our window, its silhouette shrouded in a blur of trickling rain. Rugged and green, Taveuni is known [...]

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8 Things You May Not Know About Fiji

Bula!

Before traveling to Fiji, we’d hardly traveled much in the Pacific – besides Australia – and didn’t know much about the region. But this trip to Fiji certainly gave us an excellent introduction to the Pacific islands in both the way of life and the history and culture of the islands. Beyond its beaches, there is [...]

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Empty Beaches and Remote Islands: Cruising the Northern Islands of Fiji

The pearly white sand stretches for miles alongside lush green jungle foliage. Tall coconut trees sway with the wind, while the clear spearmint blue water of the Pacific Ocean sparkles and shines. There’s not a single boat nor person in sight – just the sounds of insects buzzing in the air and the water gently [...]

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Cruising off the Southern Tip of Australia: Tasman Island

Under the cliffs

The boat rocked from left to right, over choppy waters that looked ready to engulf us. I held on tight to my seat as the wind howled and the waves swung us high and low. Even in thick waterproof jumpers, we were shivering like baby chicks with no feathers. Our guide had warned us of the swells – they can go up to 5 meters on [...]

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Next Stop: The South Pacific Nation of Fiji!

Fiji islands from above

Over the past month, we’ve slowed down our pace in California, spending time with my sister and her new baby, letting our hair down and unwinding. It’s been great to stop and reflect, and catch up with everything we’ve missed in the past few months. But we are travel addicts after all and traveling is [...]

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Fjords, Valleys and Waterfalls: Norway In A Nutshell

At Myrdal station

Frozen lakes, dark green pines, and white-and-red Scandinavian farmhouses flank both sides of the railway as we swoosh through the white snow on our modern-day polar express. We’re climbing higher and higher into the mountains and the slopes are plunging into the endless depth. As I peer down and look beneath the tracks, my head spins slightly. It’s easy to get [...]

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Kodak Moment: Cruising through Lemaire Channel in Antarctica

Cruising into Lemaire Channel

The bright sunshine bounced upon the glassy water surface, reflecting off all the white surrounding me –the white from the icebergs that floated past us, the white from the mammoth mountains that enveloped us and the white from the glaciers that slide off ice cliffs. It was a gorgeous morning, with the sun lighting up the [...]

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My First Penguin Encounter: Danco Island, Antarctica

Gentoo colony

Flippers in the air, a group of penguins tobogganed down the icy slope like kids in a playground. “Weeeeee!” I could almost hear them cheer as they swooshed across my trail one after another. Once on land with their mates, they waddled clumsily back up to the top of the ridge again, for another round on the slope. I [...]

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Crossing the Drake Passage to Antarctica: Sometimes Life Throws Us Surprises

My Antarctica expedition didn’t start the way I’d expected it to. There were no plates shattering, chairs flying across hallways, nor Titanic-like mayhem. There was not even a single dark cloud or gust of wind. Instead, bright sunshine, clear skies and a light breeze accompanied us throughout the Drake Passage. Albatrosses glided and swerved alongside our ship as we sailed the [...]

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Antarctica in Photos: Icebergs, Glaciers and Penguins

Our first landing on Dangor Island

Ice in various shapes and shades of blue sparkle and shimmer under the midnight sun. A few crabeater seals and Gentoo penguins squawk and wiggle on the ice floes nearby, surrounded by water so crystal clear the reflection of the sun’s rays is almost blinding. It’s fiercely quiet; all we can hear are the crackling of the glaciers in [...]

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Why I’m Going to Antarctica

When I shared news about my trip to Antarctica, some friends and family were genuinely puzzled. In fact, they didn’t understand why anyone would want to go to such a cold, harsh and remote place. When I set sail to the Arctic last summer, a close friend from Iceland even asked me, “Why the Arctic?” [...]

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Fulfilling A Dream: Antarctica

At the end of the week, I’ll be sailing to the tip of the world: Antarctica. As a curious traveler, I’ve always been drawn to unusual, out-of-the-extraordinary places, like Madagascar, North Korea, and Zimbabwe. But Antarctica is a far off dream, a place I’d never thought I would ever get to visit. But thanks to G [...]

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