2010-02-10 - If you are traveling from Zurich to Basel you are going through Aargau Canton. Capital Aarau is located on the western part of the canton, southern bank of River Aare. Aarau is small town with about 16000 people. I stopped first time in Aarau 1978 and second time 2001. Latest time we were traveling by car from Zurich to Bern and passed Aarau very close also. Aargau is located in northern part of Switzerland and it is not at all so mountainous as southest cantons on the Alps. Swiss nature is very beautiful, I think it is almost most beautiful in Europe. We are planned to go there next summer again, because we still have some cantons where we are not been there, at least seven of them.
2007-05-02 - It took many weeks time to get permit from Abkhazia Repsetentation in Moscow. We had flight to Trabzon in Turkey and from there taxi to Zugdidi near Abkhazian border. There was not any problems in the crossing border. We crossed the river and took another taxi to Sukhumi. Next day we went to Akbhazian Foreign Ministry to get our Abkhazian visas which were ready to collect in afternoon. Easy and safe country to visit.
2010-02-10 - Pescara is the largest city in Abruzzo Region in Italy. In the year 2001 we stopped there when we traveled by train from Brindisi to Ancona. Pescara is one of the major tourist places on the Italian Adrian Sea Coastal area. It is very easy to reach by all kind transport system, by bus, by train and also by boat, for example from Croatia by Jadrolinija ferries. It is medium sized town with approximately population of 125000. And if you want to visit in Rome while you are staying in Pescara it is not problem at all. It takes only 2-3 hours to Rome by road and three and half by train.
2010-02-10 - During our two weeks holiday to United Arab Emirates we visited all the main places in the country and we went also to Oman and Ras Musandam. Abu Dhabi is Biggest from the seven emirates and it is also capital of the country. !8 yers ago it was not yet as wonderful city as today, but there was much more beautiful buildings than any other Middle East countries where I had been already. UAE is rich country, because it does not put money for military offensives etc. Because of that many tourists comes every year to spend their holidays in Abu Dhabi or in some other emirates. If you like luxus you can select even seven star hotel. But I have not money for that. I prefer one or two star hotels and save my money.
2010-02-10 - When we left Finland I had no any idea how we can go to Acre. I was thinking that a bus is going there, but in Manaus I was told that we have to fly, because no buses were going there. OK, we bought air tickets via Porto Velho to Rio Branco. When we arrived it was midnight, but taxi driver found us cheap hotel which was even open this time. In Acre State there are living about 600000 people and approximately half of them in Rio Branco. Acre is borderig with Peru in West and with Bolivia in South and it os one of the less visited Brazilian State. Next day we flew by Rico Airlines to Porto Velho to start again our bus travel to Central Brazil.
2010-04-15 - It was Good Friday when we flew from Kavieng to Momote airport in Manus Island, or rather on nearby Los Negros Island, but the bridge is connecting Los Negros and Manus Island, which is the largest of 18 Admiralty Islands. Lorengau is capital of the province with population about 6000. In Admiralty Islands we did not stay over night, but continued our trip same day to Port Moresby.
2009-12-25 - While traveling in Caucasus by taxi we arrived to Maykop from Armavir town in Krasnodar Krai. Maykop is capital of Adygeya which is very small republic with less than half million people and it is entirely inside of Krasnodar Krai. We did not stay overnight, but continued our travel after few hours to Krasnodar town.
2007-05-02 - It was not very easy to get tourist visa to Afghanistan. At last we managed to get it from Brussels. It was also difficult to arrange Ariana Afghan Airlines tickets. Eventually we got them from Canada! We flew from Dushambe in Tajikistan to Kabul. We stayed 4 days in Mustafa Hotel. We visited to Finnish Isaf Troops and they offered us typical Finnish sauna! We also visited in Finnish Embassy. We did`t go outside of Kabul because we were informed that it would be a little bit dangerous because of land mines etc. Our return Ariana flight was via Baku to Moscow.
2009-12-25 - In the year 2006 we were traveling around Mexico by bus. We were going to south from Zacatecas to Mexico City and stayed one night in Aquascalientes (capital of Aquascalientes) Town is nice and it is growing very fast. Mexico is cheep country for tourists and our hotel was very cheep, but however clean and friendly people working there.
2009-12-25 - I have been 5 times in Batumi but never stayed overnight there. Today is easy to go to Ajaria, Finnish people do not even need visa to enter to Georgia. Best place to start your journey is Trabzon in Turkey. There are buses going many times every day.
2010-02-10 - Ajman is located between Sharjah and Umm al Quiawain. We we driving from Dubai to Ras al Khaimah and stopped for lunch in Ajman. Ajman is the smallest emirate if you compare it by area and there are living less than 400000 people. They have also own airport and many luxus hotels. We decided only eat, not to stay. But I have to say that Ajman is not bad place at all. At least our lunch was very tasty.
2009-12-25 - In the year 2006 we were traveling around USA by Greyhound bus. On the way from New Orleans via Biloxi in Mississippi we arrived to nice town called Mobile. It is not capital of Alabama, but its situation on the seaside was excellent. We stayed some hours before continued our journey to Florida.
2009-12-25 - We had two weeks holiday in Brazil 2007. All this time we were traveling around Brazil by bus and by airplane. To Alagoas we arrived from Aracaju in Sergipe. Maceio is capital of Alagoas where we stayed one night in cheep accomodation before going to Recife from where our flight back to Finland was leaving next day.
2009-12-25 - Aland Islands are part of Finland and I have been there so many times. Mariehamn is capital and you can take flight or boat to go these islands. Everybody going to Market Reef must first go Aland Island and from there you can arrange your Market Reef voyage. Boats are leaving from Helsinki and Turku. This is cheapist way to go.
2010-01-02 - Alaska has always been near my heart. That was, because I am born in same small Urjala village where Hampus Furuhjelm was living and where is also his grave. Hampus was working in Russian Alaska 1859-1864 as governor. He was living in Sitka. At that time Sitka was capital of Russian America. One daughter of Hampus died in Sitka and was buried into Sitka cemetery. So I have been planning my visit to Sitka to check, if a tombstone of Ulrika Furuhjelm is still there. But because of my work this never was possible for me in summer time. Now it is possible and I will carry out this dream any time I want. Okay, five years ago we made a short visit of a couple of days to Anchorage with Alaska Airlines from Chigago. Because it was January the weather was very cold.Temperature was more than -30C !! So we had to stay in our hotel almost all time, because it was too cold to go for a walk outside. Of course we went to supermarket and other shops to buy some food, drinks and souvenirs. In Anchorage I was wondering many ravens,which were living in town. In Finland ravens are very shy birds and are living only far in the forest. I am now waiting my summer visit to Sitka and other parts of Alaska.
2010-02-10 - 1986 Albania was not easy place to visit. They did not like tourists very much and they had some sort limit for them, how many they wanted every year. There was one travel agency in Finland who arranged these flights. In Tirana I met Oili first time and after that we are been traveling together almost 24 years. Taday Albanis is easy country to visit, you just go and get your visa at the border. That is it, no problems anymore. Maybe Albanians are thinking now that tourists are bringing money for them. And if they are thinking so, they are right.
2009-12-26 - Last year we were traveling by Greyhound bus in Canada and USA. After sleeped one night in Hay River lakeshore of Great Slave Lake in Northwest Territory we took bus to Calgary. The bus was going via Lesser Slave Lake, so we had possible to visit both Slave Lakes during same day. From Calcary we changed bus and proceed our voyage trough Rocky Mountains to Vancouver and Seattle.
2007-07-23 - We had Condor Ferries boat from St.Malo to Guernsey. From there we took a flight to Alderney Island by small plane. I was interested about Alderney stamps and I sent some post cards to myfriends. We did not stay over night in Alderney but took afternoon flight back to Guernsey.
2009-12-25 - Twenty years ago it was easy to travel to Algeria, we did not need even visa. I went via Moscow, Libya, Malta and Tunisia. In Tunis I took train which was going to Alger. Today everything is otherwise. Algerian visa is not most easist to get, there is something similar with Libyan visas.
2010-02-10 - Everybody does not know where Alsace is. But if you ask where is Strasbourg many people knows that. Strasbourg is capital of Alsace Region. Alsace is one of the smallest Regions in France and it is bordering with Germany and Switzerland. Strasbourg itself has less than 300000 inhabitans. I have been in Strasbourg twice. First time 1978 when I was traveling from Luxembourg by train and another time I was traveling with Oili from Germany to Paris. Never stayed over night there but perhaps next time.
2012-09-04 - From Omsk we had a train to Barnaul. Other side railway station there were some buses waiting passengers going to Gorno Altaysk. We selected one mini bus and started our journey immediately. We had to pay 1,500 rubles each. It was about 35 euros, not very expensive. On the way back from Gorno Altaysk we had taxi to Biisk and from there we took a train to Novosibirsk.
2012-09-04 - We arrived to Gorno-Altaysk in afternoon from Barnaul and drove to small hotel outside of town. It was very cheap hotel, about 40 euros a room for two people. We stayed one night only. Early in next morning we rented taxi car and drove up to Altai Mountains 200 km away. After one hour over there we drove by same taxi to Biisk and from there by train to Novosibirsk.
2009-12-26 - We were traveling first time around the world and arrived to Macapa from Cayenne in French Guiana. We stayed one night before continued our voyage to Belem. Macapa is situated just on north bank of river Amazon and population was about 300000. I hope that some day we have time to take river cruise from Macapa to Manaus. It would be something amazing.
2010-02-12 - While traveling around Brazil by bus we wanted visit also in Manaus. Because the roads are not good enough for buses we had to take flight from capital Brasilia. Manaus lies the place where Rio Negro River meets Amazon River. It is very big town where lives more than 1,5 million inhabitans. Manaus is good place to make your cruise in the river, but they are not very cheap. In the town we took hotel near bus station, because we were going to Boa Vista in Roraima next morning. This hotel was very cheap. If I remember right we paid only 20-30 US Dollars our double room. Of course it was not five star hotel, but enough for us. We always take cheapist hotel what we can find. Taxi drivers knows all hotels and if you ask them they will find cheap accomodation for you. We never make hotel reservations advance, because normally you can make it only for expensive hotels.
2013-08-10 - On the way from Birobidzhan to Sakha Republic we stopped in some stations of Amur Oblast also, Shimanovsky, Belogorsk,Tynda, etc.Trans Siberian Railway is passing through and train is good possibility to visit this oblast.In summer time Russian trains are hot, because of bad air condition, but you can always open window in your cabin.
2010-02-12 - Anotolia covers this part of Turkey which belongs to Asia. We selected two weeks holiday packet to Marmaris town. Because they have not airport in Marmaris our plane used airport which was located in Dalaman town. Many Finnish tourists goes to Marmaris every year and therefore many shopkeepers speak some words Finnish. During this two weeks we made also flight to Northern Cyprus, its Turkish side and also day trip yo Rhodes Island by boat. Less than 20000 people are living in Marmaris, so it is very small town. But it is not bad place to stay. This holiday was in April 2005. Latest visit to Anatolia was to Trabzon near Georgian border. From there we started our trip by bus to Yerevan and from there by taxi to Nagorno Karabakh. Trabzon is ten times larger than Marmaris and is situating at the shore of Black Sea.
2010-02-12 - Andalusia is southernmost of Autonomous Communities in mainland of Spain. Oili and me are been there only once, just before Christmas 1988. We had one week package trip to Torremolinos, which is a small town a little bit south from Malaga. Costa del Sol is a common tourist destination and people from many countries are coming to spend their vacations over there. During this one week we visited also in Gibraltar, Ceuta, Morocco and Melilla, but we had some days in Torremolinos itself also. But normally we do not want to stay in the beach, which is too boring for us.
2007-05-05 - You can travel to Port Blair from Calcutta or Chennai. Travel by ship is perhaps cheaper, but takes much more time as flight. We selected return flight from Chennai (Madras) Tsunami caused big damages in the islands and many damages were still possible to see. We stayed 3 days in Port Blair and did`nt go to other islands at all.
2009-12-26 - Hyderabad is very big City with more than four million people, almost same population than in Finland!! We were traveling this time by train arriving from Akola and going to Chennai, from where we had our Andaman flight. Railways are perhaps the cheapest way to travel around India, at least if you have time enough.
2010-02-12 - I was first time in Andorra September 1980. At that time I was traveling around Europe by train. In Toulouse I took train which was going to La Tour de Carol. I got off of train in small town L'Hospitalet and changed into bus, which was going to Andorra la Vella. I staed about 3-4 hours and then I found bus which was going to Barcelona. Second time I was traveling with Oili. We also took bus from L'Hospitalet, but we did not go to capital but stayed in Encamp village before that. In April there was many skiers on the mounts. Nice way to spend holidays for them who really like winter sport.
2009-12-26 - 23 years ago it was very difficult to get tourist visa to Angola. I went Angola embassy in Lisboa to ask it, but they told me that it is not possible. But when I told that I have ticket to Sao Tome and want proceed to Zambia I managed to get transit visa to Angola. When I arrived to Luanda airport there was not even taxis at all. However I was lucky and met one Finnish woman who was working there. She took me to hotel where I stayd two nights before proceeding to Lusaka by Angola Airlines.
2010-02-12 - Anguilla was one our latest places where we visited during our first big Caribbean trip. We had return flight from Sint Maarten using Windward and Air British Virgin Islands flights. Anguilla is British overseas territory without independence. Inhabitants no more than 15000. We stayed three days in capital The Valley. I remember wonderful beaches with clean sand. Never seen better beaches anywhere in other countries. At that time we were 23 years younger and we spent much our time in the beaches. Today we do not care about these anymore. I have now seen almost all main islands in Caribbean and Anguilla still is one of my favorite island over there. It is place where I willingly want to go again when I am planning my next Caribbean tour.
2009-12-26 - On the way from Xian to Shanghai we came to Hefei (capital of Anhui)with population of five million, ten times more than our capital Helsinki. In my opinion all cities in China are two big, and therefore air is sometimes very polluted because there are too much traffic in these days. 25 years ago everything was different because there was not so many cars and people were using only bicycles.
2009-12-28 - We were travelling around all independent Caribbean countries. Of course we also visited many islands which were not independents for example Guadeloupe from where we took our flight to Antigua. We stayed only one night before proceeding to Montserrat.
2010-02-12 - Easy way traveling to Aosta is to take train from Torino. It takes only about 2 hours to get there. Aosta Valley is smallest of Italian Regions. Capital Aosta is small nice town where with population approximately 35000. Area is mountainous because of Alps. Aosta Valley is bordered by France and Switzerland. I think that Aosta is very healthy place to live. Fresh mountain air must be good to breathe for everybody. If you are traveling by own car from France you can use Mont Blanc tunnel which takes you to Aosta Valley in Italian Side. In my opinion Aosta Valley is one of the most beautiful areas in italy. But this only my opinion.
2010-02-13 - On the way from Zurich to Liechtenstein we came to St. Gallen town. Because we wanted see also southern part of Lake Zurich we took a train to Pfaffikon. It took only some minutes before we came to Herisau town, which is located in Appenzell Ausserrhoden province and is largest town in this canton with population about 16000. Our visit in this canton was only short stop but next summer we are been planning to go Switzerland again and travel by car in all cantons one more time. From Pfaffikon we continued our trip to Sargans and from there by bus to Liechtenstein.
2010-07-11 - On the way from Graubunden we stopped shortly in Liechtenstein as well. It was our third visit in Vaduz altogether. But our destination was Appenzell town, which is the capital of Appenzell Innerrhoden. When measured by population AI is the smallest canton in Switzerland, and it is also second smallest by area (170 sq km) We stayed one hour in square taking many pictures, because there was so many beautiful buildings. Canton is a little bit mountainous, but it is however pastoral canton with a lot of cows. Therefore canton is famous its cattle breeding and dairy farming as well. There in Appenzell was some hotels to stay, but we planned to go next canton where try to find accommodation.
2010-02-13 - Apulia is easternmost region in Italy which capital is Bari. In September 1980 I visited first time over there. I was traveling this time also by train, as normally when traveling in Europe. I was coming from Cicily and came to Brindisi town. Meaning to come to Brindisi was that boat to Corfu and Greece was leaving there. In Reggio di Calabria I took train to Taranto and from there other train to Brindisi. Twenty years later I was traveling with Oili by same route. After visit to Corfu we took train to Bari, which is capital of Apulia. Because we slept two days in hotel in Corfu we did not take hotel in Bari, but continued by next train towards north.
2010-02-13 - We were traveling by car around Europe and were coming from Galicia of Spain. Aquitaine is located in south-westtern part of France and is bordering with Spain. Bayonne is first bigger town where you come if you are entering from Spain and driving through Basque Country. After 200 kilometers drive we came to Bordeaux which is capital of Aquitaine. Garonne River is flowing through Bordeaux and its source is on Pyrenees Mountain. After Bayonne the landscape comes very low without mounts. Sometimes you will feel it a little bit boring when driving long way without stopping. It was still daylight when we arrived to Bordeaux, so we just drove through and found small hotel to sleep later on. Our next destination was Saint Malo, seaport town in the shore of English Channel.
2010-02-13 - After leaving from Llivia our next destination was Galicia and Santiago de Compostela. We selected road which was going via Lerida and Zaragoza. Zaragoza is also capital of Aragon. After Pyrenees the landscape was much lower, elevation only about 200 meters. we decided not to stay in Zaragoza, because hotel prices would be more expensive there than in the countryside. The price is always a main thing when we are going to stay over night somewhere. Why to pay 100 euros if you can find accomodation by 60 euros after 20-30 kilometers drive. By 40 euros you can fill the tank of your car.
2009-12-27 - We were coming from north. In Salt Lake City there was very cold, but when we arrived to Arizona it was as summer again. Just before entering to Phoenix we saw a lot big cactus' on the roadside. We did not stay overnight but proceed to Texas by first Greyhound bus.
2009-12-27 - We arrived to Little Rock from Memphis in Tennessee. We stayed some hours before taking other bus going to Dallas. Bill Clinton is born in this town where are leaving about 200000 people. Nice stop anyway.
2010-02-13 - When you are traveling by train from Moscow to Syktyvkar in Komi Republic your train is stopping half an hour in Kotlas station in Arkhangelsk Oblast. Many people are gathered to the station selling almost everything. You can buy smoked fish, berries, mushrooms, beer, vodka, etc. They knows that in the train would be many thirsty and hungry passengers. If you are measuring Russian Oblasts by area, Arkhangelsk Oblast is largest of European side Oblasts. We stayed two days in Komi Republic before returned by same route to Moscow and we stopped in Kotlas another half an hour. In July 2009 when returning from Nenetsia back to Moscow our plane landed in Arkhangelsk for taking new passengers. It was interesting to see town from the plane when landing.
2010-02-13 - In November 2004 we made our first visit to Armenia. We started our bus trip from Trabzon in Anatolia. It was easy to cross the border to Ajaria, because Finnish people do not anymore need visa to Georgia. In Tbilisi we changed into other bus which was going to Yerevan. Armenian visa was easy to get at the bordet by 4o US dollars. In Yerevan we slept one night in central hotel Erebuni. Next day we booked our bus to Tehran. This road between Yerevan and Tehran is surely one of the most beautiful roads in the world. It takes a long time before the bus is crossed Caucasus Mountains. One year later we were in Armenia again. At this time our destination was Stepanakert in Nagorno Karabakh. When we arrived at Yerevan in the morning we went immediately to Embassy of Nagorno Karabakh. We got our visas after noon. They also arranged a car and driver us for two days. Because of nice weather we saw massive Mt Ararat on the way. Normally it is covered by clouds. On the way we also stopped one village where people were selling home made wine. We bought some litres with us to Stepanakert also. Wine was very good and did not cost very much. After two days in Nagorno Karabakh we returned back to Yerevan and took taxi to Tbilisi and Gori where we slept over night before going back to Trabzon.
2010-02-13 - At this time we selected Air France flight to Caracas in Venezuela. Our meaning was to visit San Blas Islands, San Andres and Aruba. So we booked first our Panama flights. But because of Easter we did not manage to book San Blas flights. All flights were booked many days advance. Therefore we bought tickets to San Andres and after three days relaxation we flew via Bogota to Aruba. We did not find any cheap hotel, but stayed in one expensive beach resort which was almost full of tourists. Three days was quite enough, at least for me. We sent some postcards for our friends with Aruba stamps. Aruba is produced its own stamps since 1986. Before that it was using Netherlands Antilles stamps as Curacao, Bonaire, Sint Maarten, St Eustatius and Saba. This was our first and I believe also our last time in this Island. But who knows? Never say never!
2007-05-03 - This was my third time in Ascension durig 4 weeks! Two other times were stopovers of Royal Airforces. This time I came by ship (going to Capetown) We went to ashore and had sightseeing drive by ship company`s minibus. After some hours we continued our voyage to St.Helena. In this time I was travelling without Oili, because her job prevented to travel this time.
2009-12-27 - In this year we were traveling around India by train. We came from Patna and stayed one night in cheap hotel near railway station before proceeding our journey to Silchar. To Silchar we had to take taxi because no trains going to this direction.
2009-12-27 - On the way from Moscow to Dagestan we stopped in small town called Astrakhan, the capital of Astrakhan Oblast. There was many shopkeepers on the station selling vodka, beer and also something to eat. But everybody knows that Russians like vodka very much, food is not necessary at all.
2010-02-14 - Asturias is autonomous community in northern Spain which capital is Oviedo. Reason for our visit in Asturias was that we were returning back home from Galicia which was at that time as a location in MTP country list. We already had a long drive behind through Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and France. We did not stop at Oviedo, but selected route from La Coruna to Ribadeo, Gijon, Santander, Bilbao and San Sebastian. In Asturias this road was running along a seaside of Atlantic Ocean. On the way we bought some food from supermarket and near Gijon we stopped at some beach to eat. I think that most famous Asturias' citizen today is Formula One driver Fernando Alonso.
2010-02-14 - After visit in Pitcairn we decided to visit also Austral Islands. These Islands are southernmost group in French Polynesia. Our destination on these islands was Tubuai which is main island in this group. On the flight we met one lady who promise to arrange accomodation for us if we had not any reservation already. She had nice house on the mount and we stayed two wonderful days with her and her husband. There were nice beaches around the island and one day I was swimming there. Tubuai is very beautiful island but only few tporists are going there. It is located about 650 kilometres south from Tahiti and these flights are not very cheap. Perhaps money is not main reason, but tourists coming to Tahiti knows better Bora Bora, Moorea, and Tahiti itself than these outer islands far on the sea.
2010-02-15 - We had been many times in Australia before 2009, but never in South Australia and Capital Territory. While traveling in March-April 2009 around Pacific we thought that why do not visit now. In Sydney we started our round trip by bus, first to Melbourne, then to Adelaide and from there to Canberra. Canberra is Australia's largest inland located city (about 350000 citizens) and also capital of all Australia. Distances in Australia are long and train would be better way to travel. However buses are cheaper and one night bus trip is OK. Our Adelaide bus arrived Canberra early in the morning and we had some hours time before our Sydney bus was leaving. We spent our time on the shore of Lake Burley Griffin which is eleven kilometers long lake in the centre of Canberra. Canberra is nice place to stay, but we had no time, because our flight was leaving next day fron Sydney.
2010-02-15 - My first visit at Austria was 1978. After visited in Lischtenstein I too train from Buchs in Switzerland to Innsbruck. It is famous winter sport center (winter olympic games 1964 and 1976) After spent some hours in old town I catched train which was going to Italy. Another time I was traveling with Oili by bus from Bratislava to Vienna. Austria's capital is big city ( about 2 million citizens) where we hsd much of time to walk around and see its many old historical buildings before continuing our tour to Slovenia. Before leaving the country we had our lunch in one old looking restaurant and surprise, we ate Wiener Schnitzels.
2010-02-15 - If you want to travel by train from Paris to Marseille you will select many different routes. One of the straightest route is via Auvergne. One possibility is to take first train to Clermont Ferrand and change there to train which is going via Nimes to Marseille. On the way you will pass the smaller town Vichy, which is locating in the middle of Auvergne. There are living less than 30000 citizens as Clermont Ferrand has almost 150000 inhabitants. Near Clermont Ferrand you can see Mount Puyu de Dome, 1500 meters high volcano, which is most visited tourist place in Auvergne. It was nice to spent some hours on the slope of mount, eat good lunch and drink cold beer. Summer time it is possible to catch a bus in Clermont Ferrand railway station which takes you to the summit of Puy de Dome. Not bad place at all to spend your time.
2012-05-01 - Today it is very difficult to get travel permission to Muzaffarabad. In three weeks we did not managed to get it. We entered to province crossing Kunhar River, but we had no change to go much longer. This region is bordering with India occupied Kashmir and everybody knows what is situation between Pakistan and India. This province has beautiful nature with big mountains and rivers. So we did not see the capital Muzaffarabad, but we went so close as it was possible.
2009-12-28 - One year before we stopped at Baku Airport when we were returning from Kabul by Ariana Agfan Airlines. This last time we had flight from Istanbul. We had no visa on our passport, but it was not problem at all. When we arrived to Baku we had first to go to passport control and after that we got our visa. If I remember right we paid 40 dollars each. We did not even stayed over night because we managed to buy tickets to Nachichevan by same day. There was black market ticket sellers at domestic side who took 150 dollars about one way tickets. I know that it wass much too much, but this was our only change to get ticket.
2010-02-18 - My first trip to Azores happened in March 1886. At that time I was traveling in all Portugese speaking countries in Europe and Africa. In Lisboa I first bought a triangle ticket Madeira, Azores, Lisboa. In Azores I spent five days in Sao Miquel island. When I returned Lisboa I started my work to get visas of Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Sao Tome, Angola and Mozambique. Because Oili was never been there we booked a Charter flight from Helsinki 2009. We got a nice hotel near harbour where many big cruiser ships were coming. During three days we drove around the island by taxi. First day to west, second day to north and third day to east. We visited for example in wine factory, tea factory and many sulphur springs where was also possible to swim. I was surprised these thousands cows which we saw on the way. I was thinking that they have at least milk enough on the island. One week is enough if you do not go outside of Ponta Delgada and Sao Miquel
2010-02-19 - In August 1982 was my first visit in Baden-Wurttenberg. I took train from Travemunde to Hockenheim to see Formula 1 race. At that year Finnish driver Keke Rosberg won championship. Earlier same year I went also to see Imola race. In Hockenheim I was living three days in my tent in the forest near circuit. Hockenheim is a small town between capital Stuttgart and Frankfurt. 25 year later we drove through Baden-Wurttenberg when traveling from Nurnberg to Busingen and Schaffhausen in Switzerland.
2010-02-19 - After traveled all Caribbean independent countries we flew via Miami to Nassau where we spent five wonderful days staying in small but nice hotel. Normally we do not stay five days in same place, but at that time we needed a little bit extra relaxation after hard Caribbean tour. Nassau is situating on the island of New Providence and approximately 80 percent of Bahamas' people are living there. We did not visit other islands not even Andros Island which is largest of the islands of Bahamas.
2009-12-28 - Bus is cheap way to travel in Brazil and tickets are very easy to buy. At bus stations every company shows on the wall where their vehicles are going to. So you just go their desk and tell them where you want to go. We were coming from Espirito Santo and in Salvador we took hotel for one night. Next day we bought tickets to Sergipe.
2010-02-19 - In Tehran we tried to by tickets to Kuwait, but in travel agency they refused, because we had no visa. We told them that we can get one at the airport when arriving the country, but they did not believed us. Because of that we had to change our plan and take flight to Bahrain. Also Bahrain visa is very easy to get at the airport, and also at land border if you are coming from Saudi Arabia. More than 90 percent of area is desert and only in the small part of the country it is possible to try cultivation. But they have oil and they are not making war against neighbor countries. Therefore at least Manama seems nice town with many new buildings. Bahrain is very small country and there is not so much to see than in some larger countries, but there are many nice hotels to stay and drink cold beer in your balcony.
2009-12-28 - While spending our holidays in Mexico we took ferry from Mazatlan to La Paz in Baja California Sur. After one night there we took night bus to Tijuana where arrived next afternoon. There was nice moonlight on the way and we had change to see these big cactus' both side road. Tijuana is situated near California border and we found cheap motel to stay.
2010-02-19 - Baja California Sur is the southern part of the Baja California Peninsula and one state of Mexico. Its capital is La Paz where you can arrive from other side of Gulf of California by boat. In southermost part there are two popuar tourist towns, Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. We did not go there, but took bus to the north towards Tijuana. This is good way for travel, only problem is that you can not stop where you want, to take photos, etc. The bus is also cheap way to travel and if you want take night bus you can save one hotel night. Of course this kind traveling is not very comfortable at least for older travellers.
2009-12-28 - That time Balearic Islands were most popular place for Finnish tourists to spend their holidays. I spent my one week in Majorca and did not visit to other islands, for example Minorca, Ibiza and Formentera at all. So, my flight was 31 years ago and maybe it would be the time to visit there again!
2012-05-01 - At first when we went to Pakistan our purpose was to visit Balochistan capital Quetta, but when we arrived Karachi our Travel Agency there told us, that maybe it is not good idea to go there, because of Talibans activity on the area. Instead of that we decided to take taxi from Karachi to nearest village of Balochistan, just close the border of Sindh. That is funny, because Balochistan is the largest og provinces of Pakistan, but we wanted to spend more time in the northern provinces, and made only this short visit.
2010-02-19 - After one week traveling in Bhutan we had flight to Dhaka, capital of Bangladesh. I never seen so many beggars than at Dhaka airport. Everybody was asking money. Our situation was even a little bit dangerous, but one Hotel Hilton's courtesy shuttle driver saved us from them. Usually we do not go into five star hotels, but now we wanted to leave airport as soon as possible. And in addition they gave us some discount, we paid only 80 US dollars for our room. It is not bad price when speaking about Hilton. We slept there one night before continuing our tour to Burma and Rangoon.
2010-02-19 - This was our first Caribbean tour and we visited in all independent countries of this area. Into Barbados we arrived from Grenada by LIAT. Today Barbados is one of the prime destination in the Caribbean. Today we can say that Barbados is almost leaving about tourists. Island has to offer nice beaches and everything what tourists needs. Capital Bridgetone is British style town with less than 100000 citizen, not too big if you are looking peaceful place to stay.
2010-02-19 - In Antigua we bought one day package tour to Barbuda. Flights, tours and lunch were included and price was 220 US dollars each. After arriving at Barbuda airport they took us to the place from where boat was taking us to west part of lagoon where approximately 19000 Magnificent Frigatebirds colony was nesting on the mangroves. Afterward they drove us to the northernmost part od the island where big caves were situated. Roads are paved only in center area near airport. Gravel roads are not always in very good condition. But beaches are nice and clean. At the north there was many cactus' some even 4-5 meters high. Our lunch was in Uncle Raddy's Beach Bar near Coco Point. After leaving our postcards to the post office was time to go Codrington Airport to wait our Winair flight back to Antigua.
2010-02-19 - When you are traveling by train from Basel to Bern you will come into small town called Liestal. It is capital of Basel Landschaft Canton. This canton is located in north western part of Switzerland and shares borders with France and Germany. Population of capital Liestal is approximately 13000. Because our visit was only short stop we are going to visit there again when we go to Switzerland in next summer.
2010-02-19 - Basel Stadt Canton is located northern part of Switzerland and is bordering with France and Germany. Our train to Basel left Koeln in Germany and reached Basel in five hours. In Basel we had some hours time, because we had to change our train. I have been traveling through Basel four times, also from Mulhouse (France) direction. Basel is one of the biggest towns in Switzerland and is located on the shore of River Rhine.
2009-12-28 - Many Russian railway routes are going via Ufa, capital of Bashkortostan, for example from Moscow to Astana in Kazakstan, etc. Astana train stops for half an hour, so everybody has time to buy something, for example smoked fish, beer, or something else.
2010-02-20 - Basilicata is a region in southern part of the country. Capital Potenza is easily reached for example by train going from Naples to Taranto. If you are coming from Rome and trying to Corfu ferry which is leaving from Brindisi, this route is perhaps number one. Yuo just must change into local train at Taranto. Potenza is located in Apennine Mountains and its elevation is over 800 meters. If you are interested about old buildings you will find many old churches over there. It is nice area and a couple days is not too much if you want to stay there, because there is so much to see.
2010-02-20 - Bavaria is the largest of Germany's states. We stayed one night in small village near Nurnburg when we were in our way to Busingen. Nurnburg has population of half million, but it is not capital of Bavaria. Munich is a biggest city and also capital. Bavaria is bordering with Austria, Switzerland and Czhech Republic. In the south are located many winter sport towns, for example Garmisch Partenkirchen. If you have not your own car Bavaria is easily reached by train almost from everywhere. Rail network in Germany is splendid and trains are OK. But car is better. At this time you can select your own route and stop any time you want to. If you like beer or wine Germany is cheap country to drink them. For example you can buy one liter of red wine by 0,70 Euros!! That is not bad price at all.
2009-12-28 - First time I went to Beijing by train from Mongolia and traveled about ten days around. I flew via Moscow back to Finland. Second time we flew to Beijing and proceeded to Pjongyang in North Korea by Air Koryo. Back to Beijing we arrived by train from Pjongyang. I think that this year we have to go again, because we still have many provinces to visit.
2010-02-20 - We got our Belarus visas in Tallinn. From Tallinn we took bus to Vilnius in Lithuania where we slept one night before continuing our trip to Minsk. Because it was winter time and temperature in outside was -20 degrees, we had to keep all our clouths on, because our bus was also cold. In Minsk we managed to find a small hotel where was also sauna. In this hotel we spent our Christmas also. During these four days which we stayed in Minsk we had good time to familiarize ourselves with supermarkets and many restaurants over there. But after four days I was not sad at all when we climbed into our train which was going to Kaliningrad. This time was quite enough for me.
2009-12-28 - Belgorod is situating about 40 kilometres north of Ukranian border and it is capital of Belgorod Oblast also. When we were staying in Voronezh we took taxi and visited there. Taxis in Russia are not very expensive, so it is good change to travel short distances.
2010-02-21 - At that time we were visiting all Central American countries from Mexico to Colombia. We had not yet any experience about ground traveling, therefore we went into one travel agency in Mexico City and bought our air tickets. We arrived Belize City by TACA airlines from San Salvador. Belize City is the largest town in the country with 70000 people or more. 25 years earlier when Belize City was a capital of British Honduras it was very badly distroyed by hurricane. After that country changed their capital. New capital Belmopan was located at inland 80 kilometers west of Belize City. After sleeping one night in Belice City we walked in next day around, but did not go outside of the town. Our next destination was Honduras and Tegucigalpa. Anyway Belize was nice experience for us where we willingly want to go again.
2010-02-21 - We had Cameroon Airlines flight from Douala to Cotonou. Benin is French speaking country and is located between Togo and Nigeria in western Africa. Cotonou is largest town but capital is Porto Novo. Cotonou is seaside town and population is something between half million and one million. I think that nobody does not know it exactly. We came there in the morning and left late afternoon to Lagos. We just spent our time walking on the seashore watching birds, lizards and domestic animals as pigs and hens. It was a little bit dirty everywhere, but that is more than normal in Africa. However Benin is not the worst country in Africa, rather opposite of that.
2010-02-21 - In June 1978 I was traveling by train from East Berlin to West Berlin. I was a little bit afraid when I was in East Germany, but everything was OK. In the border they were checking my passport a long time, especially when I came back from West Berlin after 5 hours. West side of Berlin was completely different than communist side of the city. I was coming from Bulgaria and had been traveling more than one week in these European communist countries where I felt myself a little bit anxious. There system was so much different than in western countries. So when I came to West Berlin I had feeling hat I'm home again. They had their own postage stamp in West Berlin and I sent some postcards from there to Finland. But after twelve years West and East Berlin was history as West Germany and East Germany as well.
2007-05-03 - This time I was traveling with one of my UN fellow and his cousin. I have also many cousins leaving in Wisconsin and Michigan where I went to meet them. On this way we decided to visit Bermuda Island. We took return flight from New York and stayed couple days driving by small motorbikes around the island.
2010-02-21 - Oili and me have been many times in Canton of Bern. Last time we were driving by car through it, coming from Busingen and going to Geneve. Bern Canton is one of the largest cantons in Switzerland, about 6000 square kilometers. Capital Bern is capital of Switzerland as well. Other times we came by train, but do not know Bern very well. We always hurried to France or Italy, because our opinion was that other countries were cheaper than Switzerland. I,m not sure is this true on these days, and it is not so important for us anymore. Of course we are still saving our money, but if we like some place we can also stay there one or couple nights. We are retired now and we have more time when traveling.
2010-02-21 - In the year 1987 we spent our Christmas in Bhutan. We made our bookings via Indian Travel Agency in Helsinki. We flew to Delhi and got our permits over there. Our Druk Air flight left Calcutta and in Paro we were meeted by local guide who took us into hotel. Next day we visited in sacred hermitage of Tiger's Nest (Taktshang) During this week what we spent in Bhutan we visited also capital Thimphu and old capital Punakha. The roads are a little bit dangerous, because of high mountains. The air was very clean and I never seen so much beard lichens on the branches of the trees. This trip was one which I can never forget. Landscape is something unique in the world what you can find only in Himalaya.
2009-12-28 - We booked our train in Allahabad and we were our way to Assam. We stopped in Patna and stayed few hours. Less than two million people are living there and it is capital of Bihar. Afternoon we bought tickets into night train to Guwahati in Assam.
2010-02-24 - We got our Guinea Equatorial visas in Cameroon from where we flew to Malabo. We found a cheap hotel from the seaside. Only problem was that there was not water coming from the tap, but bath tub was full of water however. We were going to stay four days, but because Oili broke her leg we had to change our flight and leave back home as soon as we could. Anyway, I did not like Malabo very much, but it was pity that we had Sierra Leone visas ready on our passports, but it was not possible to use them. Sierra Leone is still one of these few countries where I never have been. Our emergency route to Helsinki was via Lagos, Madrid, and Frankfurt.
2010-02-24 - After visited in Macchu Picchu in Peru we took train to Puno, small town on the shore of Lake Titicaca (elevation about 3800 meters.) From Puno we continued our trip by bus to La Paz. It is world's highest capital (3660 meters) with population almost one million. La Paz is located close Mt Illimani which height is 6682 meters. It is a massive mount and covered by snow all the time. Bolivia was our last destination on this tour. After two days staying in La Paz we had our Lloyd Aereo Boliviano flight to Lima and Aeroflot flight from there via Moscow to Helsinki.
2010-02-24 - Bonaire was our last destination of our latest Caribbean tour. We arrived by Insel Air from Curacao. We took taxi to downtown and paid 10 US dollars. We found good hotel in the center and paid 50 Euros (75 US) for one night. Capital Kralendijk's waterfront is full restaurants and bars, but prices were too expensive for us. So we went to supermarket and bought our food from there. There was also coffee maker in our room to use. For my opinion Bonaire was better place to stay than Curacao, but we stayed only one night on each islands and did not seen very much. Next day we drove to Flamingo International Airport and booked our flight back to Curacao.
2010-02-24 - While traveling around southern Africa I flew by Air Botswana from Harare to Gaborone. Plane stopped also in Francistown, which is Botswana's second biggest town after capital Gaborone. Gaborone is situated near South Africa's border at southeast part of the country. Because of Kalahari desert in Botswana are living only two million people. At the northern part of the country there is locating Okawango Delta, where most tourists coming to Botswana are going to see its wildlife. Almost all kinds of southern Africa animals are living there as many rare species of birds as well. Because Oili have never been to Botswana and my only visit happened 25 years ago, it is in our program to visit there very soon in future.
2007-05-01 - From Honiara it was about 1 hour Air Niugini flight to Kieta. Kieta is small village and is situated near Bougainvilles capital Arawa. Arawa itself is one of the biggest towns in Papua New Guinea. Later on I heard that Air Niugini stopped its flights to and from Kieta in 1990. I do not know is it true or not but I think that today best connection is between Port Moresby and Buka. We stayed 1 night before leaving to Port Moresby.
2010-02-24 - When you are traveling by land into Berlin you must go through Brandenburg State. It surrounds Berlin which is located almost in the middle of Brandenburg State. Capital Potsdam is situated very close Berlin City, about 20 kilometres of it. In the east Brandenburg is bordering with Poland. I have been twice in Brandenburg and will go there in this or next year again. Germany is so close Finland and it is easy to go by ferry or drive through Baltic and Poland.
2010-02-24 - We were traveling by bus around Brazil. In Palmas (capital of Tocantins) we however booked TAM flight to Brasilia. After traveling long time we needed some rest and slept couple days in hotel. So we had time to walk around city and see many beautiful buildings. After that we went to airport and bought air tickets from GOL office to Manaus. GOL was much cheaper company than TAM. I do not exactly remember how much we paid, but it was not much. Brasilia International Airport is third largest if we compare it with passenger movement. Larger are of course Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo.
2010-02-25 - After Hamburg Bremen is one of my most visited cities in Germany. It is located about 100 kilometers southwest from Hamburg. Many rail routes goes via Bremen and also main highway from Denmark to Belgium and France goes this way. Bremen is one of the most populous cities in northern Germany. On the way when walking in the city you can see a lot of historic buildings, statues and cathedrals. Also Beck’s Brewery is situated over there. Beer is as a national drink and it is much cheaper than in many other countries. At least in Finland one pint of beer costs between seven and eight US dollars if you drink it at the bar. Good reason to visit in Germany!
2010-02-25 - While travelling around United States by Greyhound bus we also visited in Canadian side. Our route in Canada was Winnipeg-Regina-Calgary-Vancouver. By next Greyhound tour when we came to British Colombia we first came to Dawson Creek. It is a place from where Alaska Highway is originating. On the way to Whitehorse in Yukon Terriotory we saw many black bears and buffalos. There was also some high mountains, for example Mt. Roosevelt (about three kilometres high.) After visited all Canadian Territories I have opinion that British Columbia is a most beautiful one. One week later we were in Edmonton and took Greyhound bus to Vancouver. At this part of territory the peaks of Rocky Mountains are more higher than in the North, highests almost four kilometres high. This route was really nice. First time when we were coming from Calgary we travelled at night time and did not see anything, but now we saw this all in daylight. It was really fantastic tour.
2010-02-25 - We arrived to Tortola from Saint Thomas by Air British Virgin Islands. Tortola is the largest of British Virgin Islands, about 20 kilometers long. Capital’s name is Road Town. It is located in the south coast of the island and population is about ten thousand. There are some mountains in Tortola, but not more than 500 meters high. Islands are as British Colony, but people do not use English Pounds. Official currency is US Dollar. There are some good beaches also and nice hotels as well. We did not visit to other islands in British Virgin Islands, but booked flight to Puerto Rico.
2010-02-25 - I have been four times in Saint Malo port town in Brittany. The reason has been to travel to/from Jersey. First time I was coming from Channel Islands and travelling to Paris. It is possible to go by train via Rennes. Second time Oili and me made this trip to opposite direction from Rennes to Saint Malo. Next time we arrived St Malo by car from Spain and took a ferry to Jersey Island. After two days we came back and slept one night in hotel near harbour. Towns visited in Brittany are only St Malo, Rennes and Nantes. Never been for example in Brest in Breton Peninsula.
2010-04-24 - I have two visits to Brunei, first one 1986 and second time 2001. It is located in Borneo island and surrounded by Malaysian state of Sarawak. First time I had Singapore Airlines flight from Singapore, from where I also got my visa. Second time Oili and me flew from Kuching by Malaysian Airlines. At that time we had not the visa beforehand, but we got it easily at Bandar Seri Begawan airport. We stayed one day before leaving to Kota Kinabalu by Royal Brunei Airlines. Brunei cinsists two different part which are separated by State of Sarawak. I wonder why there is only one location on the MTP pages. In my opinion eastern part (Temburong) should be as own location, as for example Oecussi in East Timor.
2009-12-29 - I have passed through Brussels at least ten times but never stayed there more than few an hours. Last time I changed train over there and went to London by Eurostar train which was new expierence for me.
2010-09-07 - From Orel we drove to Bryansk Oblast which is bordering with Ukraine and Belarus. Bryansk city has population of half million and it is situated almost 400 km SW of Moscow. It was one of the oblasts where we did not stay over night on our journey. Reason was that we travelled 17 oblasts in nine days. Of course we stopped also in Bryansk to take photos and get something to eat, etc. We stayed one hour or something like that, before leaving towards Smolensk.
2009-12-29 - While staying in Ushuaia we were thinking how to go back to Buenos Aires. Airplane was one alternative, but we decided to take bus for this 3040 kilometres distance. Not very comfortable trip but perhaps a little bit cheaper than plane.
2010-04-24 - Buenos Aires Province is the largest province of Argentina. While traveling around Argentina by bus we visited in all provinces. It was a long way from Ushuaia to Bahia Blanca, where we stayed some hours. It is big city with about 0,3 million inhabitants. After two days bus trip it was nice to go restaurant and have cold beer and very big Argentinian steak. Bahia Blanca is not capital city of province, but it is near Buenos Aires located La Plata. La Plata is almost twice as big than Bahia Blanca and there are 0,6 million people. We stopped also there, but proceeded our trip to Buenos Aires by next bus.
2010-04-24 - I was first time in Bulgaria in the year 1978. At that time I was travelling around Europe by train. I was taken train Thessaloniki to Istanbul. There I saw that one bus was going to Sofia and there was a seat available for me. 30 years ago Bulgaria was one of the most terrific countries in Europe. There was a lot of policenen everywhere looking after tourists. They came also into my hotel where I stayed one night, and asked what I am doing there and what is reason of my visit. It was clear that they did not like me very much. But twenty years later, when Oili and me visited there last time, it was not so bad anymore. Then we stayed one week in the small tourist village on the Black Sea.
2010-04-24 - 2001 we were traveling by TGV train from Lausanne. On the way to Paris we stayed some hours in Dijon City, which is capital of Burgundy Region in France. There are many vineyards near Dijon and when we were eating in restaurant we tasted also some local wine of course.One of the most famous man born in Dijon is Gustave Eiffel, whose monument you can find at the base of Eiffel Tower in Paris.
2010-04-24 - We had Air Burkina flight from Bamako (capital of Mali.)In Ouagadougou we stayed three days before proceeding our trip to Niger. Ouagadougou is big city with more than 1,5 million inhabitans. Country's name was before Upper Volta and they changed name as Burkina Faso 1984. I think that Burkina Faso is one of the less traveled countries in Africa, because they have not any special tourist atraction over there. For example in neighbor country Mali they have Tombouctou, where many tourists are going to.
2009-12-29 - I had flight from Nairobi to Bujumbura by Kenya Airways. Usually I do not stay long time in one place, but in Bujumbura I stayed four days at Meridien Hotel, which was one of the best hotels in the town. I remember when I was drinking beer in the hotel's bar there was many rats running on the floor. Five star hotels are a little bit difference over there, than somewhere else. On one day I took taxi to Uvira, which was small town in Zaire's side. Back to Nairobi I flew by Air Zaire plane.
2009-12-29 - This time I was traveling by train from Irkutsk to Beijing. This train is going via Ulan Ude which is Buryatia's capital. It is not very big with population, about 350000people are living there, and all Buryatia less than one million.
2010-04-22 - Providenciales is the most populated of Caicos Island. I had Pan Am flight from Miami and on the same way I was visiting in Grand Turk as well. At that time there was less tourists than today. Today most tourists are coming from Canada and USA. I thing that there are not straight flights from Caribbean Islands to Providenciales, but you have to go via Miami and Nassau. If you like to have something special while travelling on the Caribbean, Caicos Islands are one change to spend your time.
2010-04-27 - Last time Oili and me were travelling by train from Rome to Cicily 2002. Calabria is the southernmost region on Italian continent. Its capital is Catanzaro, but for me most visited town is Reggio de Calabria in the south. It is largest city of the region and is located on the eastern bank of Strait of Messina. In my opinion travelling by train is the best way to see Italy. I have now three trips around Italy and every time I have traveled through Calabria up to Cicily Island as well.
2010-04-27 - My first trip to California was in June 1987. We rented car in Las Vegas and drove through Dead Valley to Los Angeles. There we visit in Disneyland, Hollywood and many other places. From there we flew to San Francisco and stayed couple days. Next visit was in January 1993 when we flew from Honolulu to Los Angeles and stayed one night in Santa Monica. Then in April 1997 we were travelling by bus from Baja California to San Diego. In June 2008 we travelled by bus from Seattle to Sacramento, which is the capital of California and from there to Fresno, where we rented car for three days. First we drove through Yosemite National Park to small town called Bishop and stayed one night in motel before proceeded our trip through Dead Valley to Las Vegas in Nevada. Then we drove towards Los Angeles and slept one night in Victorville town. Next day we drove to the north and Sequoia National Park, where world’s biggest trees are located. Our last stop in Los Angeles was in april 2009, when we were returning by Air Tahiti Nui from Papeete.
2010-04-27 - In January 1996 we had our Royal Air Cambodge flight from Bangkok to Phnom Penh, and we stayed there two days. First day we had small cruise on Mekong River and another day we drove by taxi up to Killing Fields, where are glass shrines full skulls of people, who were killed by Khmer Rouge led by Pol Pot. Cambodia was opened for tourism 1993, just three years before our visit. Before that it was one of the most difficult countries to visit, and tourist visas were impossible to get. Today it is safe and much visited country and the most famous sight is Angkor Wat and it's temples.
2010-04-28 - We got our Cameroon visas in Stockholm for free of charge. While travelling around Africa we had Air Afrique flight from Cotonou to Douala. In Douala we stayed three days, because we needed visas to Equatorial Guinea. Douala is the largest city in Cameroon, but the capital is Yaounde. Cameroon is French speaking country, as most of it's neighbor countries as well. We left Cameroon 10th of March by Cameroon Airlines to Malabo. This is our only visit to Cameroon, but it is possible that we have to visit there again, when we are going to Bata.
2010-04-28 - My first visit to Campania was in December 1973. I was going to enlist second time to my UN service, and on the way to Cairo by Hercules military plane we stopped in Naples for few hours. Then I saw first time Vesuvio volcano, which is located very close Naples. Second time was in September 1990 by train. Third time was in April 2001, when we travelled together around Europe by train. Next time was in September 2002 on the way to Lampedusa. Then we were travelling by train to Agrigento in Cicily.
2009-12-29 - We were traveling by bus from Villahermosa through Campeche to Quintana Roo. On the way we stopped small town called Escarcega. Capital Campeche be located about 150 km north of Escarcega seashore of Mexican Gulf. In this area there are many Maya civilization's ruins to be seen.
2010-04-28 - For Finnish people Canary Islands are the most famous place to spend their holidays. We went there first time in November 1986. We stayed one week in Las Palmas and during this period we visited also to Western Sahara. In March 1988 I stopped in Teneriffe on the way to Capetown via Ascension and St. Helena. In November 1998 we had two weeks vacation in Puerto Rico and last time we stopped in Las Palmas airport December 2004 on the way to Brazil and back. I do not like Canary Islands very much, because of too many tourists. But islands are beautiful anyway.
2010-04-28 - 2007 was our big round around Europe by car. After visited to Galicia and Santiago de Compostela, we came back by seaside road to France. Cantabria is one of the smallest regions in Spain with about 2000 sq miles and 600000 people. Every third of them is living in Santander, what is a capital of Cantabria and main port town also. In the east Cantabria is bordering with Basque Country and Bilbao is located about 100 kilometers from Santander town.
2010-04-28 - I flew Ilha do Sal island from Lisbon. Taxi driver drove me to very expensive hotel, because he did not understand English and I did not understand any word of Portuguese language. At that time Cape Verde was one of these few African countries, which allowed South African tourists to come their country. Also this hotel where I stayed in Ilha do Sal was almost full of them. There was not much green in this island, but everywhere was only sand, except some plants outside of hotel. I spent two nights in this island, before left to next destination, which was this time Guinea Bissau.
2010-04-22 - Carriacou is the largest island of the Grenadines. It is 37 square kilometers by areas with population about 10000. Osprey Ferry is running between Grenada and Hillsborough harbour in Carriacou. We got our return tickets by 160 ECD each and it takes one and half an hours to get there. Sea was very rough and many passengers were seasick on the way. If you do not like this kind travellig you can also fly there from Grenada. If you want also visit in Petite Martinique island, Osprey Ferry takes you there as well.
2010-04-28 - On the way from Zaragoza to Santiago de Compostela we drove through Valladolid city. It is capital of Castile and Leon. Castile and Leon is the largest of autonomous communities of Spain. On our trip we saw also a big castle Castillo de Penafiel, which is located near main road and is about 600 years old. When you are arriving it, you can see it from very far, because it is situating in very high hill.
2010-04-28 - When you take train from Barcelona to Madrid, train will stop half an hour before arriving in town called Guadalajara. Guadalajara is one of the towns in Castile-La Mancha autonomous community and is located approximately 60 kilometers northeast from Magrid. It is also situated almost middle of Spain. But it is not capital of Castile-La Mancha. Capital is Toledo and it is located 70 kilometers south of Madrid. These two towns has exactly same population, 80000 inhabitans. Castile-La Mancha is one of the largest community in Spain by area, and there are living more than two million people.
2009-12-30 - First time I visited Catalonia 1980. At that time I was coming from Andorra by bus to Barcelona, where I stayyd one day in small hotel. Last time we were traveling by car around Europe. When we came to Llivia we selected route to Zaragoza. On the way we stopped in Lleida Lerida which is capital of Lleida province.
2009-12-30 - I can't say that I love bus traveling very much but one reason why I often will select this way to travel is, that it is quite cheap. At his time Oili and me were traveling all Argentina provinces by bus from Iguacu to Ushuaia. To Catamarca we came from Tucuman and proceeded to La Rioja. Catamarca is mountainous province situated mostly on Andes Mountains and bordering with Chile.
2010-04-29 - When we went to Caribbean Islands 1987, our first dwstination was Grand Cayman. We flew by Cayman Airways from Miami. Grand Cayman is the largest of Cayman Islands. Cayman Islands capital is George Town. It is situated also in Grand Cayman and have population of 30000. During our one day visit we did not see very much. One place where we visited was Hell in the northwest of island. It is common tourist place with small limestone formations. I thing that most tourists coming to Cayman will visit in this place also. We spent some hours in Seven Miles Beach as well, where many nice bars and restaurants are locating, as many hotels as well. Next day we proceeded to Kingston by Air Jamaica.
2009-12-30 - Fortaleza is one of the biggest cities in Brazil, population almost 3 million and of course it is capital oc Ceara province. We booked our bus in Natal and in Fortaleza we stayed one night in small hotel near bus terminal. A day before we had our long flight from Helsinki to Recife, so we needed some rest and relaxation. After this night in hotel we early morning took bus which was going to Teresina in Piaui.
2010-04-29 - We came Bangui from Brazzaville by Lina Congo Airlines. On the way we stopped also in Dongou town in Congo side. In Bangui we spent a couple days in four star hotel. Usually we will select cheaper hotels, but in countries like this they are most often full cockroaches and other insects. But sometimes same problem is with five star hotels also. Bangui itself is located on the bank of Oubangui River just at the border of Congo (Zaire.) At that time we did not see many other tourists over there, but maybe today everything is different. After two days we proceeded to Douala by Cameroon Airlines.
2010-04-29 - We were travelling to south from Paris. Our first destination was this time Andorra, but because we had time we stopped twice before that.From Paris it takes less than an hour by train to Orleans, which is the capital of Centre region. Orleans is builded to the northern bank of Loire River, which is the longest river in France, more than 1000 kilometers long. Orleans has about 120000 inhabitans only. So, it is not very big city by population. We stayed 3-4 hours walking around, before proceeding to other French city called Limoges.
2010-04-29 - During our one week holiday in Malaga we visited also in Ceita, Gibraltar and Melilla. Ceuta is located in northern Africa opposite Gibraltar in Europe. It is easily reached by boat from Spain, for example Algeciras. There is not airport in Ceuta, but you can fly by helicopter from Malaga airport if you do not like travel by boat. However boat is much cheaper and it is not so long way from Algeciras. From Ceuta we made also trip to Tetouan in Morocco, before same day returning back to Europe.
2009-12-30 - We left from Iguacu early in the morning and came by bus to Resistencia (capital of Chaco) in afternoon. We were little bit tired, but did not stay over night there. Because it was still daylight we continued our voyage some kilometres more and went to Corrientes which is capital of Corrientes Province.
2010-04-29 - We got our Chad visas in Addis Ababa in one day. Next day we had our Ethiopian Airlines flight to N'Djamena. Taxi driver took us to Novotel Hotel, which was most expensive, I thing. Anyway, room price was 250 USD and we had to stay there three nights, because there was no flights before back to Addis. Three times 250 is 750 USD. This is most money what we ever had paid for hotel. But there was good buffet breakfast included and we ate so much that we did not need lunch or dinner at all. Our hotel was located on the bank of Chari River. It was funny to think that there was so much water in Chad. I was been thinking that all country is very dry, as Sahara desert. But I was wrong. We did not go outside of capital, just walked up to the center to mail our postcards and to take some photos as well.
2010-04-30 - While travelling around Europe by train we were going from Paris to Luxembourg and stopped in Chalons en Champagne. It is the capital of Champagne Ardenne region, and it is famous of its sparkling wine. They call it champagne. Champagne is popular name for sparkling white wine around the world, but real champagne is only made in Chalons en Champagne. Biggest town of region is Rheims where are living almost 200000 people, four times more than in Chalons en Champagne. We saw there many old churches, some of them more than 800 years old, as Notre-Dame-en-Vaux for example. It is on UNESCO World Heritage list as well. We stayed some hours in the town, but did not taste champagne at all.
2009-12-30 - Chandigarh is capital of two states of India, Haryana and Punjab! Very funny to thing about.We booked our train to Chandigarh in Delhi. There we only changed our train on the way to Shimla. I liked this landscape over there. Himalaya Mountains were so close.
2010-04-30 - We bought our tickets in one Queen Street travel agency in Auckland. Air Chathams have at least one flight a week from Auckland, most flights are from Wellington. On the way we stopped in Napier, what is located in east coast of North Island. Chatham Islands are about 800 kilometers east of New Zealand and Chatham is the largest of the islands. We found good hotel in Waitangi near harbour, where we stayed four days. Waitangi is as capital of Chatham Islands and there was living 200 people, all islands together about 600. Only Chatham and Pitt Islands are inhabited. We had possible to drive island around with two New Zealandese tourists, who were rented a car. There was some endemic birds as well. There are only 40-50 Chatham Pigeons in the world, but there was one forest on the mountain where we saw many of them. After four nice day we had our flight to Wellington.
2007-05-02 - We bought train tickets from Moscow to Mahachkala in Dagestan, but we did not go to Mahachkala at all but left train in Kizliar (other Dagestan town) From there was only less than 5 kilometres to Chechnya border. So we took taxi to Grozny. There was not any problems in the border of Chechnya. They do not even stopped us. Grozny was not at all what I`ll waited: No ruins, almost everything was rebuilded. We did not stay Grozny over night but continued our trip to Ingushetia.
2009-12-30 - At this time we traveled by train and our destination was Astana in Kazakstan. From Moscow to Chelyabinsk it takes about 37 hours and train stops at Chelyabinsk station for about one an hour. This is not long time, but you have time enough to walk outside and buy some food and drings.
2011-04-13 - Chesterfield Islands are located 550 km northwest from New Caledonia, half a way between Australia and Grande Terre of New Caledonia.
Roman Bruehwiler was rented catamaran to Chesterfield Islands and he offered us a possibility to join for this cruise. This Bamboo Free named catamaran was leaving from Koumac in northern part of New Caledonia. It took five days to go Chesterfield Islands and come back. Five days on 20 meters catamaran at the stormy sea is not fun. But because of large lagoon landing was very easy. There are many small reefs with sandy beaches to go. We visited only one reef (without sandy beaches) but there it was also very easy to go ashore, where many sea bird colonies were waiting us. We stayed about two hours there. Islands are very seldom visited, mostly only radio amateurs are going there. It was very nice experience indeed.
2009-12-30 - Our train was coming from Rourkela in Orissa and our destination was Raipur in Chhattishgarh. Chattishgarh is very new state, carved out of Madhya Pradesh on 2000. Raipur is big city with about one and half million inhabitants. After one night rest in hotel we proseeded to towards Akola in Maharashtra state.
2009-12-30 - After one night rest in Chetumal in Quintana Roo we booked a bus to Tuxtla Gutierrez which was situating about 500 kilometres southwest of Chetumal. It took a long time because the road was narrow and very curving. After travelling over night by bus we were very tired again. However we did not take accomodation, but proceeded by next possible bus towards Oaxaca.
2009-12-30 - Oili and me were coming from Dallas to El Paso by Greyhound bus. The border crossing was easy and we came to Mexican side border town called Ciudad Juarez in northern state Chihuahua. Because it was early morning we just booked first bus going to Chihuahua town. Chihuahua is big state but population is only little bit over three million. Most part of area is very dry and because of this, life is very hard over there. In Chihuahua town there is about 800000 inhabitants. Next day we proceeded to Durango.
2010-04-30 - 1989 we were travelling around the world and from Buenos Aires we had Aerolineas Argentinas flight to Santiago. This was only short visit, one night in small, but new hotel. Chile is a long country, almost 6500 kilometers, but on the MTP pages it is still only one location. I'm wondering, if Argentina is divided, why not Chile. There are 15 regions altogether. From Santiago we proceeded to Easter Island by Lan Chile. Our second visit to Chile was 2008 when we visited all 23 Argentina provinces. Then we were travelling by bus and on the way to Ushuaia we had to go through Chile as well.
2009-12-30 - We arrived to Chongqing by train from Guiyang town in Guizhou province. When we were entering there the air came very polluted. It was not cloudy day at all, but visibility was very poor. There are living over 30 million people and because day was calm without any wind, all pollution was floating over the city. This was reason why we did not stay over night there, but proceeded our voyage to Chengdu in Sichuan province.
2007-05-05 - We paid about € 1000 our return ticket from Perth to Christmas Island. First stopover was in Learnmonth and second one in Cocos Islands. Return flight was strait to Perth. On the island we stayed in old hospital building. It is now hotel, because they built new bigger hospital some hundred meters from shore to inland. There we saw many thousands red crabs. Sometimes it was even difficult to walk because there was`nt room for steps. I rented a bicycle and went to watch Christmas Island birds as Abbot`s Booby.Goshawks,Herons,etc. Distance from Perth to Christmas Island is about 2300 kilometres.
2010-04-30 - After Japanese regions came as new locations for travellers we flew to Japan again. We had flight via Istanbul by Turkish Airlines, because it was cheapist company flying there. Before we left we bought our rail passes in Helsinki. After arrived in Osaka we took train to Nagoya, where we were been some years earlier also. At that time we had straight flight from Helsinki by Finnair. This time we visited in Hokkaido, Ogasawara, Okinawa and Daito Islands. Mt. Fuji is highest mount in Japan. It is located near Tokyo, but in Chubu region. It is 3776 meters high and it is possible to see if weather is clear.
2010-04-30 - 2008 we traveled all provinces of Argentina and southern Brazil using bus only. From Neuquen province we arrived to Rawson, what is the capital of Chubut province. It is a small town with population about 25000 inhabitans. We did not stay there but we proceeded by same bus to Comodoro Rivadavia. It is biggest town in the province and is located in southern border. Over there we had to wait some hours before our bus to Rio Gallegos was leaving. Comodoro has a population about 150000 and is located on San Jorge Gulf.
2010-04-30 - Chugoku Region is located in Honshu Island and in westernmost part of it. Our destination was Hiroshima, where we stayed one night. Hiroshima is the place where all tourists are going to. It is the first city which was destroyed by atomic bomb 1945. We visited in Peace Memorial Park of course and spent there many hours. We stayed one night in hotel, but it was very difficult to find any where was room for us. Anyway we found one and after sleeping well we continued our trip to Shikoku Island.
2010-04-30 - When we had our trip to Wake Island we also visited to four Micronesian islands. Chuuk Island was new location for both of us. We had Continental Micronesia flight from Guam. Chuuk was something else what I expected. I was wondering especially roads, which were in very bad condition.Because of heavy rains there were large and deep waterholes on the road. I have to say that I did not like this island at all, and one day was quite enough for me.
2009-12-30 - Many railway routes goes through Kanash town in Chuvashia. However Kanash is not capital of republic, but near Mari Republic border situated Cheboksary. Our last stop in Kanash was when we were going to Moscow from Ioskar-Ola. In Kanash we stayed couple hours walking on the streets, and then we took last train of the day to Moscow.
2009-12-30 - Our Mexican tour was almost finish. We arrived Saltillo from San Luis Potosi and going back to USA. All the time we were been traveled by bus. Saltillo is Coahuila's capital with population about 700000. As normal, we were too busy with our traveling and we had no time to stay, but we booked first bus which was going to Monterrey direction.
2010-05-01 - Our National Jet airplane left Perth airport and stopped first time at Learmonth and second time in Cocos Island before arrived to Christmas Island. In Cocos Island we stayed about one hour only. It was enough to send some postcards to our friends in Finland. Cocos Islands land area is only about 15 sq kilometers and there are 600 inhabitans. Most of them are living in Bantam Village in Home Island. Airport is located in West Island, which is the largest of the islands.
2009-12-30 - Colima is very small state in western Mexico. When we went to Acapulco our meaning was that we will stay there two or three weeks. After five days I got feeling that everything was little bit boring and I asked Oili why we do not take bus to go somewhere else. Next day we did it and traveled to Colima town. There was not so many tourists, but it was nice place to stay one day.
2010-05-01 - 1987 we were traveling from Mexico to Bolivia and flew by Avianca Airlines from Panama to Bogota where we stayed one night. 2002, while spending some days in San Andres Island, we flew to Cali and from there to Bogota. Taxi driver misunderstood us and drove us to five star hotel. But because we stayed only one night, we paid this 150 USD, what they demanded. Next day we had flight to Aruba, also by Avianca. Bogota is very big dity, today there are living more than seven million people. It is one of the biggest cities in South America.
2009-12-30 - We were travelling south from Montana and came to Cheyenne in Wyoming. We were tired and our meaning was to stay one night in Cheyenne, but when I checked map and saw that there was only about 200 kilometres to Denver we decided to torture ourselves a little bit more. It was late evening when we arrived Denver, but we managed find very soon cheap accomodation near bus station.
2009-12-30 - After we were opened our Greyhound 30 days Discovery Pass in Port Authority Bus terminal in New York we started our trip. First destination was Bridgetown in Connecticut State. It is not very far from New York. Greyhound bus was very old model and not in very good condition, but we did not care about that. For us the bus was cheapest way to travel in USA and Canada. If I remember right, we paid only about 250 dollars each and we could travel as much as we wanted during 30 days!
2010-05-01 - We had Air New Zealand flight from Papeete to Rarotonga. This was our first around the world trip and first time to Pacific also. Rarotonga is main island of Cook Islands and also most populous of them. Capital Avarua is located on north coast of Rarotonga. We did not stay overnight there, but we are going to visit there again, because we want to visit to Aitutaki also and if possible, Pukapuka and Penrhyn as well. There are 20000 people living on the islands, and every fourth of them in capital Avarua. Tourists likes these islands very much and almost 100000 foreigners will visit there every year. Most of them goes also to Aitutaki Island. Aitutaki has its own stamp from year 1972 and Penrhyn has its stamps from 1973.
2012-11-08 - Accompanied with Roman Bruehwiler Oili and I had a cruise from Townsville to Flinders Reef. It took about 20 hours to reach this small sandy island, without any vegetation. But many birds were nesting there. For example Australian Gannets, Masked Boobies and some kind of terns. Landing was very easy and we stayed about one and half hours walking around.
If you check from MTP pages you can see that more than 300 members are visited to Coral Sea Island Territory. I do not believe that, maybe
15-25 is closer truth. There are many members who do not even know where these islands are locating. If they are been to Great Barrier Reef they will mark it as Coral Sea Islands.
2010-05-01 - Cordoba Provice is located on the middle of Argentina. Capital Cordoba is Argentina's biggest city after Buenos Aires. There are living 1,5 million people. However we did not go to Cordoba, but smaller city Rio Cuarto, about 200 kilometers south from Cordoba. Our bus came from San Luis, where we slept one night in hotel. We had many hours time there before our night bus to Santa Rosa in La Pampa was leaving. So, we went to eat a large Argentinian steak in nearby restaurant.
2009-12-31 - We left early in the morning Iguasu and came to Corrientes, where we had to find accomodation. Because there was not any hotels near bus station we stopped one taxi and asked if he can find a cheep hotel for us. He promised. OK, hotel was cheap but it was very far from bus station and taxi took almost same, what we paid about one night in hotel. And in the morning we needed taxi again.
2010-05-01 - We made our Corsica visit via Sardinia. First we took boat from Civitavecchia to Olbia in Sardinia. From there we drove by bus to Santa Teresa, northest point of Sardinia and from there by ferry to Bonifacio, southest point of Corsica. Bonifacio is a small town with 3000 inhabitans. It is also popular tourist place as well, with nice beaches. Ajaccio is capital of Corsica, about 50 kilometers northwest from Bonifacio. Many ferries from France are coming to Ajaccio and easiest way is to fly to Campo Dell'Oro airport. Napoleon Bonaparte was born in Ajaccio.
2010-05-01 - On the way from Mexico to Bolivia we stopped in Costa Rica also. We flew from Managua to San Jose by Aeronica. At that time we did not use ground transport at all, but only airplane. I think that Costa Rica is one of the best countries for tourists in Central America, at least after two days in Nicaragua it was as paradise. It was pity that we had no time to stay there longer. San Jose is not located on the seaside, but in inland, almost in the middle of country. After one night sleeping at the hotel we continued our trip to Panama City by TACA Airlines.
2010-05-02 - Normally we do not take charter flights, but if it is cheaper way to travel, we do. We paid our Chania flight and one week in hotel about 200-300 USD only. This was really cheap. Chania is the second biggest town in Crete with population of 60000. Capital Heraklion is twice as big as Chania. Chania is located in western part of the island and its most notable resident is perhaps Nana Mouskouri, who born there 1934. Crete is popular tourist place, as almost all other Greek islands as well. Anyway, I think that one week on the island was quite enough.
2009-12-31 - I had flight via Moscow to Simferopol by Aeroflot . At that time Crimea was part of Soviet Union and there was many soldiers averywhere. I did not liked at all. I came in the morning and proceeded afternoon via Tripoli to Malta. This time I was traveling alone. Today Crimea belongs for Ukraine and we are planning to go Crimea together, because it is new location for Oili.
2010-05-02 - I have been many times in Zagreb, first time when Croatia was still part of Yugoslavia. Every time I have been travelling by train, and last time Oili and me were coming from Budapest and going to Venice in Italy. Croatia has a long coast on Adriatic Sea. Tourists likes it very much and there are ten million tourists every year who are going to visit there. One of the most popular tourist place is Dubrovnik in the south, near Montenegro border. (Never been there) If you are collecting World Heritage Sites you can find seven of them in Croatia, and Dubrovnik old city is one of these.
2009-12-31 - We were waiting something else when we arrived to Havana, but my opinion was that it was most terrible place where I ever had been. Not any display windows on the streets, no bars, nothing at all. We booked hotel, but because there was travel agency in the hotel, we went to ask if we can change our flight earlier. We had tickets next day to Mexico, but we were lucky and got flight to Merida today. We were very happy to hear this. We knew that in Mexico everything should be better.
2009-12-31 - We had Antillean Airlines flight from Kingston in Jamaica. Our meaning was only visit in Netherlands Antilles and we did not go to Bonaire and Aruba in this time. In Curacao we stayed one night before continued our journey to Venezuela. I liked Curacao and we had to go there again, because we are still missing Bonaire.
2010-05-02 - 2008 Cyclades came as new location on the MTP list. So, we had to go again to Greece. From Pireus harbour we took ferry to Santorini Island, and stayed six days over there. It was winter time and there were only some tourists. Summer time the island is full of them. In december there was more dogs than tourists. If you prefer airplane you can fly there as well. Airport is located about six kilometers from capital Thira, where most hotels are located.
2010-05-03 - I have been to Prague three times, once by train and twice by plane. My first time was early 1978 during Czhechoslovakia. 1993 it was dissolved into two states, Czech Republic and Slovakia, without war and without any to be killed. Today Czech Republic is as whatever western country, but everything was different 1978 during Soviet Union. Prague is nice city. Its historic centre is one of UNESCO Heritage Site also. There are also nice bridges, which crosses Vltava River, as Charles Bridge for example.
2010-05-03 - We arrived to Silvassa (capital of Dadra and Nagar Haveli) from Mumbai by taxi. It is small but beautiful town with 25000 inhabitans. If you are travelling by train, the nearest railway station is Vapi in Gujarat, only few kilometres from Silvassa. If you are thirsty and want a beer in Vapi, it is not possible. You must go to Daman (west) or Silvassa (east) to quench your thirst. Silvassa is located in northern bank of Daman Ganga River and you can find there good hotels to stay. Not bad place to stay couple days or even more, depend on what you want to see. One possibility is take part for lion safari.
2010-05-03 - We bought train tickets from Helsinki to Makhachkala (capital of Dagestan) but because we were going to Grozny (Chechnya) we left train in Kizlyar, 220 kilometers before Makhachkala. It is small town near Chechnya border and from there was shorter drive to Grozny. Kizlyar is located on the Terek River and there are about 50000 inhabitans. It was very early in the morning when our train arrived there, but there were some taxis waiting at the station. First one what we asked took us willingly to Grozny and even up to Beslan in North-Ossetia.
2007-05-02 - Daito Islands are situated less than 400 kilometres east of Okinawa. There are two main islands Minamidaito, southern and Kitadaito, northern. You can go by ferry fron Okinawa, or you can take RAC Airways flight from the same place. We took flight, because it was quicker. Our destination was Kitadaito. There is hotel in the island, but they did not accetped credit cards and we had not Japanese yens enough, so we had not possibility to hotel. But no worry! We met Kitadaito`s school principal, who gave us bed for the night. Other night we spent with one american teacher who was only foreigner leaving in the island, excetp sugar cane workers from Philippines. We also stayed some hours in the school, where students were asking questions and we told some facts about Finland. I think that 2 days was quite enough in this small island.
2010-05-03 - In my report concerning Dadra and Nagar Haveli I already told something about Daman and Diu also. While we were in Vapi (in Gujarat) we went into one nice restaurant and ordered steak and beer. However they had only vegetable food and not beer at all, because it was not allowed to dring in Gujarat. We left out of restaurant and I asked one taxi driver if there is somewhere restaurant, where we can eat meat and get a beer for drink. So this driver drove us to Daman, what was only few kilometers from Vapi, and they had everything in their restaurant, also beer. After good meal and couple of beers we took taxi to Vapi railway station and continued our trip towards New Delhi, by next train going to this direction.
2009-12-31 - Our long voyage in USA, Canada and Mexico was almost finish. Our Greyhound bus was coming from Baltimore in Maryland and going to New York. We had however much time before our plane was leaving from Newark Airport. So we jumped out in Wilmington town. Wilmington is not big town, but anyway it ia biggest one in Delaware. We walked about four an hours on the streets before catched other Greyhound bus which was going to Newark.
2010-05-03 - First time I was in Delhi 1987 on the way to Nepal and Bhutan. Then it was as a shock for me. There were cows everywhere where we went. Of course I saw cows also on my last visit, but city itself was a little bit different than 20 years earlier. At least there was more cars than before, and when it was rush time it took a long time to drive by taxi to our destination. For me Delhi is too big city, approximately 15 million people. This is three times more than in Finland!From Delhi we made our train trip to Jammu and flight via Srinagar to Leh in Ladakh.
2010-05-03 - I have roughly 20-30 visits to Denmark, by train, by car, by boat and by plane as well. Before 2000 we had to go by boat from Malmo to Copenhagen, but today we can go over bridge from Sweden to Denmark. It is much easier travel to Europe now. Denmarh has same population than in Finland, about 5,5 million. But if we measure land area of these two countries, Finland is eight times larger. Switzerland is same size with Denmark, but they have much more MTP locations than Denmark has.
2010-01-01 - My first visit to Washington was 1987. I stayed one night in hotel and visited in White House and Arlington Cemetery, where John Kennedy's grave is. Today there is also Larry Thorne's grave. Larry was Finnish soldier who moved 1950 to USA and died in Vietnam 1965. His name in Finland was Lauri Torni. Second time I was travelind with Oili. We traveled by Greyhound bus and came from Virginia. That time we only stopped for few an hours and continued our voyage to Baltimore.
2010-05-03 - I have two visits to Djibouti, 1984 and 2005. At my first visit I had flight from Addis Ababa. I stayed in Europa Hotel and met many French Foreign Legion soldiers over there, also one Finnish soldier. I tried also to get Somali visa, but because I had Ethiopian stamp in my passport I did not get it. Reason was Ogaden war between Ethiopia and Somalia 1977-1978. So I did not visit Somalia at this time, but proceeded by Air France Jumbo Jet to Seychelles. Another time I was travelling with Oili also from Addis Ababa. We stayed in Djibouti Hotel and visited on Lake Assal. It lies 155 meters below sea level and is the lowest place in Africa. We went also into Daallo Airlines office to buy our tickets to Mogadishu and Hargeisa. We got our Somaliland visa in Addis Ababa, and to Somalia we did not need visa at all. They did not accept credit cards, but we had to pay by cash and by US dollars as well. But they did not cost very much and we had this amount with us.
2010-05-04 - I have three visits to Rhodes Island, two first by plane and last one by boat from Marmaris in Turkey (Asia) It is located 18 kilometers from the coast of Turkey. Rhodes is best known of Dodecanese Islands and I think that most visited also. One of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Colossus of Rhodes was more than 30 meters high and was situated in Rhodes town, capital of Dodecanese. It was destroyed 226 BC by earthquake. Rhodes town is popular tourist destination of the island where all visitors are going to.
2010-05-04 - Dominica is located between Martinique and Guadeloupe islands. We had Air Martinique flight from Fort de France. Dominica was discovered by Christopher Columbus 1493, who also cave its name. Because it was Sunday when he saw island first time he called it Dominica according of Latin language. We stayed one day in capital Roseau. it is located on southwest coastal and has population about 15000. It is nice small town without big hotels, but there are many small hotels and other accommodations to stay.
2010-05-04 - 1987 I was first time in Dominican Republic. At that time I had Eastern flight from Port au Prince in Haiti to Santo Domingo. After Haiti it was nice place to come, as paradise for me. Then I stayed couple days there. Twelve years later Oili and me took two weeks holiday to north coast tourist town Puerto Plata. From there we visited also in Haiti and many other Dominican places, also in capital Santo Domingo. In Puerto Plata there was very nice beach, with good bars and restaurants. At the garden of our hotel we saw small bird called Vervain Hummingbird. It is second smallest bird in the world, about two grams by weight. Only Bee Hummingbird in Cuba will be a little bit smaller. I did not get bored during these two weeks, and it was abnormal for me.
2010-05-04 - My first visit to Zaire happened 1985 when I was visiting in Bujumbura in Burundi. Then I drove by taxi to small border town called Uvira, on the north coast of Tanganyika Lake. Three years later I flew with Oili from Bujumbura to Kinshasa by Cameroon Airlines. We stayed four days over there, because we needed the visa to Congo Brazzaville. It was not so easy to get, but we managed anyway. Kinshasa was a typical African town, a little bit dirty and boring. After four days we flew to Libreville, Gabon by Air Zaire.
2010-04-20 - At Historic Sea Port in Key West we managed to by Dry Tortugas tickets for next day cruise. We had to pay 140 dollars each, much more what they were writing in their internet pages. Dry Tortugas is located about 70 miles west of Key West. When you are approaching you first can see Jefferson Fort walls. This massive fort is about 150 years old. On the islands there are many sea bird species, for example Magnificent Frigatebirds. At spring and autumn many ornithologists goes there to watch many million migrating birds moving this route south and north. There is a visitor book in the one harbour building and we saw that Charles Veley was visited there 7th Dec 2009. It was very interesting place to visit, but island is not very large, and all other island are protected for birds. If you do not like boats (sea is sometimes very rough) you can take also seaplane from Key West.
2010-05-04 - We have many stopovers in Dubai, but our only visit was 1992, when we had two weeks holiday in UAE. Dubai is one of the seven emirates of UAE. 1992 Dubai was not so popular tourist place yet than today. Today it has more than ten million visitors every year. Dubai International Airport is one of the most travelled airport today with approximately 40 million passengers. It does more than 100000 people every day. It is really much, but tourists likes UAE, because it is safe country, at least if you compare it with some other Arabic countries.
2010-04-21 - From Henderson it took 35 hours before we came to Ducie. Our meaning was to go through passage into inner lagoon. However captain told that it was too dangerous because of hard wind. He helmed the boat to other side of island and anchored it. In this side island the sea was completely calm and I thought that captain takes us to the coral reef immediately. But what did the captain? He went to sleep! Perhaps he thought that wind is going to weaken and we can try to go inside of lagoon, or something like this. Anyway, when he waked up at afternoon it was much more windy than before. So, we waited until next day, but the weather was still same. Because we had no much time to waste captain decided now to do something and take us to the coral reef. Everything seemed safe and when we came to the edge of coral I jumped down to bottom of corals, but suddenly there came a very big wave which throw our rubber boat far to the corals. Because I was outside of the boat my legs and back were cut by corals very badly. Also our outboard motor was broke down and we had to try back to ship using our paddles. On the three attempt we managed to cross first waves and after that it was easy, because the wind was behind us. After some minutes and two hundred meters we reached the ship and everything was OK again. Good experience!!
2010-01-01 - To Durango we came by bus from Chihuahua. We arrived to Durango (capital)in late evening, but we found good accomodation near bus terminal. In the morning we walked two an hours around before proceeding to Zacatecas. Durango is one of the biggest states in Mexico, about 125000 square kilometres but only 1,5 million inhabitants.
2007-05-02 - In Bali we bought Merpati flight to Dili. At this time East Timor was not independent yet. UN Troops were taking care about air traffic. We did not go outside of capital and stayed 2 nights in cheap but good hotel which served good food and drinks.
2007-05-01 - One of my dreams was always been to travel one day to Easter Island. So Oili and me decided to go our first around the world trip. From Santiago de Chile we arranged our Lan Chile flight. In the island we managed to get very cheap accomodation ($ 10 a room per night) We stayed 4 days and saw allmost all stone heads of the island. My favorite places are always been these small islands in middle of the sea and Easter Island is one of the best.
2010-05-05 - After coming to Cape Town from St, Helena, I took flight to East London. I rented car in the airport and drove to Transkei consulat to get my visa. After that I drove to Umtata, capital of Transkei. From Transkei I drove to Bisho, capital of Ciskei. Today this same town is capital of Eastern Cape. At this time these both homelands were almost independent countries with their own stamps, etc. I sent some postcards from these homelands with Transkei and Ciskei stamps for my friends, and for me itself also. Today you can not to do that, because there are not Transkei and Ciskei countries anymore. From East London I flew to Durban.
2010-05-05 - Our first trip to Ecuador was 1987. Then we flew from Bogota by Avianca and stayed three days in Quito. Quito is capital of country, but I did not like it very much. Second time, when we were in Paraguay, we flew to Guyaquil, where we arranged our trip to Galapagos Islands. We stayed there four days and my opinion is that Guyaquil is better town than capital Quito. But this is only my opinion. Quito is located almost on the middle equator, a little bit to south of it. At least it is closest equator located capital in the world.
2010-05-05 - While I was in UN service in Cyprus 1971, I made my first visit to Egypt. I visited in Aswan and Luxor. In Luxor I visited in Valley of the Kings and in the tomb of Tutankhamun also. I also visited at temple complex of Karnak and before going back to Cyprus I also visited in Alexandria. In Cairo I stayed in Hilton Hotel and visited in Egypt Museum as well. My first UN service in Egypt was 1973 and my service place was Suez town in south end of Suez Canal. At this time my service last one year. Second time I was serving in Egypt 1975 and was working in Ismailya town as Military Police. At that time I made visit to Khartoum in Sudan. I went first by train from Cairo to Aswan. Then by boat to Wadi Halfa in Sudan border and then by train through Nubian Desert to Khartoum. After six months serving I returned to Finland, but came back again next year 1977 and was serving again in Ismailya. At that time I climbed up to Kheops pyramid, what was a little bit illegal. 1996 when Oili and me were visiting in Cyprus, we took a boat to Port Said, and from there bus to Cairo and the pyramids of Giza. This was only one day visit. Our latest time was 2005 when we were returning from Somalia.
2010-05-05 - 1987 we were travelling from Mexico to Bolivia. From Guatemala we had TACA flight to El Salvador International Airport. El Salvador is smallest country in Central America by area, but there are living more than six million people. Capital San Salvador is not seaside city, but is located in inland almost middle of the country. It is also biggest town in Central America after Guatemala City. We stayed there only one night before proceeded to Belize.
2010-05-05 - Firs time I was coming from Innsbruck to Bologna by train 1978. Next time 1982 when I went to Imola to watch Formula 1 race and Keke Rosberg, who won world championship this year. 2001 we had train trip via Rimini and Bologna to France. 2002 we had two weeks vacation in Rimini. This time we visited also in Lampedusa and San Marino. Last time we drove by car from Milano to Rome, and our route went through Emilia-Romagna and Bologna as well. Bologna is the capital of the region and there are living about 400000 people. It is located almost middle of Emilin-Romagna region.
2010-05-05 - I have arrived to England mostly by airplane, four times by ferry, from Oostende, Guernsey and twice from Isle of Man also. Last time we went by train Brussels to London. England has more than 50 million people, and from this amount at least every seventh lives in the capital London, which is one of the biggest cities in Europe. Underground is the best way travel around city, because at rush time traffic is terrible and it takes much time by taxi or bus. Dover is the main port for people coming from continent of Europe. England is very conservative country and they still have left hand traffic. They still have their own money also, not Euro as in many others European countries. I think that main reason is, that England is located on the island. Anyway, it is always nice to visit there, although it is a little bit too expensive to stay there.
2010-05-05 - We arrived to Parana from Buenos Aires by bus via Rosario and Santa Fe. Parana is capital of Entre Rios. It is located on the eastern bank of Parana River, what is 2500 kilometers long, after Amazon second longest in South America. We did not stay in Parana, but proceeded to Concordia town in Uruguay border. We found a cheap hotel where to stay one night. Concordia is not as big as Parana, but there is 150000 residents however. We were travelled from Ushuaia by bus without slept any nights in hotel, so it was nice to sleep on the bed now. But early in the morning we went to the bus station again and bought tickets to Paso de los Libres in Corrientes. It is gate way to Uruguaiana and Brazil.
2010-01-01 - We had two weeks holiday in Brazil which time we traveled around the country by plane and bus. We came to Vitoria (capital of Espirito Santo) from Rio by bus. Because we slept one night in Rio, we did not stay overnight in Vitoria, but proceeded to Salvador by night bus.
2010-01-01 - I never visited in Estonia when it was part of Soviet Union. My first trip was 28 Nov 1991, two months later when Estonia became independent. Nowadays we will visit there about ten times every year. It is only about 80 kilometres from Helsinki to Tallinn and takes only few an hours by ferry. Usually we will buy some wine because the price is only half of Finnish prices. Nowadays the prices in Tallinn are going up all the time, and it is not so good place for shopping anymore.
2010-05-05 - 1984 I flew from Khartoum to Addis Ababa. During my five days there I visited in Nazret also. On the way to Djibouti I stopped in Dire Dawa as well. At that time Ethiopia was a communist country and its leader was Mengistu Haile Mariam. 2005 Oili and me flew from Sanaa, Yemen, to Addis Ababa and stayed 13 days. During this we got our visas for Chad, Djibouti and Somaliland. When we arrived back from Hargeisa by Ethiopian Airlines we were sitting just behind of Somaliland president and his wife. In Addis Ababa there was red carpet for us.
2010-05-05 - While travelling around Europe by train, we stopped on the way from Madrid to Lisbon in town called Caceres. There are about 100000 inhabitants. It is one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Cities. There are many old churches and cathedrals, built in the 13th-15th centuries, for example Church of Santa Maria. Extremadura is 5th largest of the autonomous communities of Spain and its capital is Merida.
2007-05-03 - In London I managed to buy Royal Air Force military flight ticket to Falklands. We stopped in Ascension Island for refueling.I stayed one week. In Stanley I was sleeping in Emma`s House. I also flew to Pebble Island where I stayed 4 days. I saw there 5 different species of penguins and many other seabirds. On the way back to England the plane stopped also in Ascension. It took about 20 hours from Falklands to Brize Norton airport in England.
2010-05-06 - Smyril Line left Bergen, Norway and stopped first time at Lerwick, Shetland Islands Second stop was Torshavn, Faroe Islands before Iceland. After two weeks we came back and stayed in Faroe Islands four days. At that time Faroe Islands were only place in Europe where was Prohibition. In Iceland it was half Prohibition, there beer was prohibited, but in Faroe Islands all alcohol beverages were prohibited. But we knew that people were making it themselves. There are more sheep than people living on the islands and therefore the most common food is mutton. There are published Faroe Islands stamps since of 1975. Before that they used Danish stamps.
2012-05-01 - Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA)is located just on the border of Afghanistan. Peshawar is an administered center of FATA, but it is separeted some kilometers by North West Frontier. We stayed one night in Peshawar Pearl Continental Hotel, where suicide bomber attacked two years earlier and destroyed half of the hotel and killed a lot of hotel customers. Next day in the morning we asked a taxi driver to drive us to Torkham, where Khyber Pass between Afghanistan and Pakistan is located, but some kilometers before there was police checkpoint and they told us that tourists are not allowed to go there. so we had to turn and drive back to Peshawar.
2010-05-06 - While travelling in Croatia we found from Zagreb a bus which was going to Sarajevo. After Bosnian War it was still a little bit dangerous to travel there and the bus drove via small roads, which were free about Serbian soldiers. Sarajevo itself was full ruins and damaged buildings, but we found a small hotel near bus station where we stayed two days before returned back to Zagreb. I think that we were only tourists in the town this time. Bosnia was just opening for tourists and reconstructing their country for them. And at least in Sarajevo there was much to do, because almost all buildings were damaged during war.
2007-05-03 - Fernando de Noronha is situated about 360 kilometres east of Natal. You can fly there from Natal and Recife, but you have to take package tour and it is not always very cheap. We stayed 3 days in nice small pousada relaxing in hammock. Many trees were full of red flowers and there was much Frigate Birds and Brown Boobies. One of my favorite places.
2010-05-06 - We have five visits to Fiji, first 1989, two visits 1992 and also two 1993. Fifi is best base to go if you are travelling on Pacific islands. From Nadi Airport there are flights leaving almost everywhere to the Pacific area. From there you can easily get visas to Nauru and Kiribati also, or not so easy. !989 we tried to get our Nauru visa. We paid 100 USD for taxi to Suva and back, but in Nauru Embassy they told that they could not help, because ambassador was playing golf in Nadi. Our flight was leaving next morning. We went to the airport, but they refused to let us go, because we had return flight from Nadi and no visa. It was pity, but we stayed in Fiji one extra week and it is not bad place at all.
2010-05-06 - Finland is the eighth largest country in Europe with land area about 338000 sq kilometres. But our population is only 5,5 million. People said before that Finland is living by forest. Roughly it so also today, but now we have also Nokia. I’m sure that everybody knows this name. Today Finland is a tourist destination as well and more than four million visitors are coming there every year. I have been working seven years abroad and travelling 2-3 years. But it is always nice to come back home.
2010-05-08 - I have three crossing between Dover and Ostend in Belgium. From Finland this was the shortest way to England. In Ostend we stayed one night in hotel, when we were returning from Isle of Man back to home. Flemish region’s largest city is Antwerp, with population of half million. In Ostend there are living only 70000 people. Ten years ago Ostend was a popular place to start your visit to England. I used this route every time when I was going to Great Britain and on the contrary. However last time we came from UK, we took ferry from Dover to Calais, because we did not find any ferries going to Ostend anymore. I do not know what is situation today.
2010-04-20 - I have been about ten times in Florida. Last time we had a flight from Philadelphia to Miami and we were on our way to Caribbean Islands. Before that we however visited in Dry Tortugas. There were two Greyhound buses a day going from airport to Key West and we selected a bus which was leaving 11.30 next morning. We stayed one night in Days Inn Motel near airport and got free transport from/to airport. In Key West driver said that he is going only to airport. This was a little bit strange, because from there was still four miles to the center and we had to take taxi up there. I was wondering so many cocks crowing in downtown. We had to stay two nights there, one night before going to Dry Tortugas and another night when we came back. It was very hard to find cheap accomodations and prices were generally between 150-250 dollars, but when we walked about one mile from center we managed to find a small motels by 90 dollars a day. When we came back to Miami we srayed one night at Runway Inn Motel by 56 dollars, included also airport transports. This price was not bad at all.
2010-05-08 - We came from Iguazu Falls by bus to Corrientes, where we slept one night in hotel. Next morning we took bus to Formosa, which is the capital city of the same name province of Argentina. Population of Formosa City is over 200000. Formosa province is bordering with Paraguay and also with its capital Asuncion. In Formosa we stayed some hours before returning back to Corrientes. Especially I remember beautiful jacaranda trees, which were bloomed around the town.
2010-05-08 - Franche Comte region in France is bordering with Switzerland. If you take train from Strasbourg to Lyon you are going through the region. Train also stops in Belfort, which is located in northern Franche Comte region and train stops also in capital Besancon. One of the most visited historic place is Citadel of Besancon, which is one of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
2010-01-01 - I came to South Africa by ship from St Helena. From Capetown I took flight to Port Elizabeth and there I rented car. I drove many thousand kilometres around, also in Bloemfontein area, from where I drove to Kimberley in Northern Cape. Same time I visited also four existing homelands Transkei,Ciskei,Venda and Bophuthatswana. I sent myself postcard from every homelands with their own stamps. I still have these cards in my box.
2010-05-08 - 1989 we made our first trip around the world. We had Surinam Airways flight from Paramaribo to Cayenne, where we stayed two days. But we did not visit to Devil’s Island as many other tourists do. This prison was closed 1952 and today it is most attractive tourist destination in the country. French Guiana is not independent country, but it is as overseas region of France. From Cayenne we flew by Varig Airlines to Macapa, which is the capital of Amapa state in Brazil.
2010-05-08 - Fribourg is one of the cantons in Switzerland. It is located between Bern and Lausanne. When you take train in Lausanne, it takes about 50 minutes to Fribourg town. Fribourg is not very big town (37000) inhabitants, and most of them are French speaking. Saane River is flowing through the town in more than 500 meters elevation.
2010-05-08 - 2009 we arrived Trieste from Pula, Istria Peninsula. There are many buses going to Italy. It was my second visit to Trieste, first one was 1978. Then I was travelling by train from Venice to Beograd. Trieste is located in the eastern part of northern Italy and there are more than 200000 residents. Only building we visited was Trieste Cathedral, which has 1,5 thousand years history. Trieste was nice place to stay, but we had to hurry, because on next day was our flight from Venice via Riga to Helsinki.
2010-05-08 - Fujairah is one of the seven emirates of UAE. 1992 we visited all these seven emirates. Fujairah is only emirate which is not located on Gulf of Persia. There are also less desert than in others. If measured by land area Fujairah is third smallest emirate. The smaller are only Ajman and Umm al Quwain. If we measure it by population, it is the second smallest. Only Umm al Quwain is smaller. We made our visit from Ras al Khaimah where we were staying one week.
2010-01-02 - We arrived to Yingtan town (Jiagxi Province) from northeast town Hangzhou. In Yingtan we changed to other train which was going to Fuzhou in Fujian province. However we did not go all the way to Fuzhou, but stopped in smaller Fujian town called Shaowu. Travel time to Shaowu was about three an hours and we had four an hours time to stay before first train back to Yingtan was leaving.
2010-05-09 - 1988 we flew by Air Zaire from Kinshasa to Libreville, capital of Gabon. Gabon is located in the western part of Africa and the equator goes through the country. Its neighbour countries are Guinea Equatorial, Cameroon and Congo Brazzaville. Capital Libreville is situated a little bit north of equator. There are only 1,5 million people living in Gabon, from whom more than every third are livind in the capital Libreville. We stayed one night at small hotel near the beach. The beach was full of African Mahogany logs. I was wondering why they left this lumber rotting outside and did not sell it, because mahogany timber is very expensive. Gabon is French speaking country and it got independence 1960 from France. Gabon is not bad place to stay. For me it is on the list of top ten in Africa. From Gabon we continued our trip to Brazzaville by Cameroon Airlines.
2010-05-09 - We visited to Gagauzia when it came as a new location on the MTP country list. We flew via Riga to Moldova’s capital Chisinau. Because it was late afternoon we stayed on night in there. Next morning we took taxi to Comrat, which is the capital of Gagauzia and is located in southern part of Moldova, between Romania and Ukraine. It is much cheaper to go by bus, but there are not so many buses going there and we had no time to wait. In Comrat we went into one restaurant to eat and have a bottle of good Moldovan red wine. Because our flight to Budapest was on afternoon we had to hurry. After lunch we started our trip back to Chisinau. On the way we drove via Trans Dnestrian border town Tighina, or Bender, as it is also called. To Budapest we flew by Moldovian airlines.
2007-05-01 - Because I am also ornithologist it was very nice experience for me to visit these famous islands. We booked our one week trip in Guyaquil. First had flight to San Cristobel where our boat was waiting us. We visited 6 different islands and saw many endemic birds for example Darwin´s Finches, Galapagos Hawk. etc. It was nice to swim with seals and walk across the islands where fearless Blue-Footed Boobies and Frigate Birds were nesting. One of my favorite places indeed.
2010-05-09 - 1990 we made a trip to western Africa. We flew by Aeroflot from Moscow to Bissau. From there we drove by car through Senegal to Banjul. Gambia is a smallest country of Africa continent, and it is surrounded by Senegal. It belonged before for UK, but got independence 1965. Gambia is not a worst place to spend your holiday, but three days was quite enough for us. From Banjul we flew by Ghana Airways to Dakar.
2010-05-09 - On February 2009 we were going to Pitcairn Island and flew from Tahiti to Mangareva. On the way we stopped also on small Tuamotu island called Tureia. Mangareva is the largest island of Gambier Islands, but the airport is located on nearby Totegegie Island. There are only one flight a week from Papeete and from airport you have to take boat to Rikitea village in Mangareva. Boat is waiting all flights coming to island. It takes about half an hour from airport to Rikitea and pays you 5 USD. In Rikitea we went to police station where they stamped our passports. This is funny, because in Papeete they did not stamp it at all. But because we were going out of the country they had to do this. On March 2010 we made this same trip again on the way to Pitcairn, but at this time we did not stop at Tuamotu Islands. We stayed one night on the harbour before leaving by Southern Cross towards Pitcairn Island. In Rikitea there are small markets to by something and near harbour is also good small restaurant to eat.
2012-11-08 - From Urumqi we flew to Lanzhou, a capital of Gansu Province, located on the bank of Yellow River. Lanzhou was a little bit bigger city than Urumqi, where we were stayed last night. There are living about 3,5 million people in Lanzhou. From the airport we took a taxi to railway station and continued our trip to Xining by train, without staying over night in hotel. We had three anf half an hours to stay, before our train was leaving.
2010-05-09 - Gauteng is the smallest province of South Africa measured by land area. It is even smaller than two mini countries Lesotho and Swaziland. But Gauteng has population of 11 millions. It is more than any other of these nine provinces, That is, because of Johannesburg and Pretoria are located in Gauteng. I have been many times in Gauteng. 1988 I got new passport from Finnish Embassy in Pretoria, because old one was full of stamps. Actually I got it in London in UK, but because I was leaving by RMS Saint Helena to Capetown, I had no time to wait, and they promised to send it to Pretoria to pick up. When I arrived to Johannesburg airport I rented car and drove around northern provinces of the country. I visited in Bophuthatswana and Venda. I drove through Kruger National Park also. I have flights to/from Johannesburg with many cities in Africa, for example Lusaka, Windhoek, Durban, Manzini, Nairobi, Gaborone, Harare, Maseru and Maputo.
2010-05-09 - During the years 1973.1978 I was serving in UN troops altogether two years in Middle East. I served in many MP detachments, as Suez, Ismailya, Port Said, Eilat, and Tel Aviv. We had possible to take UN minibus and drive around the area, in places as Golan Heights and Gaza as well. Gaza is 40 kilometers long, narrow region on the coast between Egypt and Israel. Capital Gaza is located northern part of Gaza Strip. In northern border crossing happens through Erez border guard post and in the southern, Egypt border in Rafah. There are not many good roads, and main road is connecting Erez and Rafah with each other. Today it is possible to fly Gaza as well. Jasser Arafat International Airport was opened 1998. Airport is located in southern corner near Rafah.
2010-05-09 - We came to Geneva, westernmost canton of Switzerland by car from Lausanne. Our meaning was to visit to International Telecommunication Union (ITU). Geneva Canton is surrounded in west, south and east by France. After Zurich Geneva City is second biggest city in the country. It is located at the southernmost coast of Lake Geneva and on the south bank of Rhone River. European highest mount Mont Blanc is more than 4800 meters high, and it is situated about 50 km to southeast from Geneva. It is located in French side and if it is clear day, you can easily see it from Geneva. European Headquarters of the United Nations is located in Geneva as well, but we did not visit there, because it is not on the MTP pages yet. Geneva is nice place to visit, but everybody knows that Switzerland is not cheap country to stay.
2010-05-09 - While travelling around Canada, USA and Mexico by bus, we arrived to Atlanta from Mobile in Alabama by Greyhound. Atlanta is the capital of Georgia with same amount of population as in Finland’s capital Helsinki (550000) but in metropolitan area are living five millions people more. I have also at least ten landings at Atlanta Airport, but never gone out of the airport on these stops. We had some hours time to walk in downtown, before our night bus to Orlando in Florida was leaving.
2010-01-02 - I have been traveling around Germany by train, car, plane and boat. I have been in all states except Saarland and Helgoland. But if or when these states comes as a new locations for MTP country list I am going there again and want to visit all states, taking photos, etc. Germany is so close Finland that flights are very cheap and traveling by train with Inter Rail Pass also cheap.
2010-05-09 - We had Aeroflot flight to Togo’s capital Lome. From Lome bus station we took a bus which was leaving to Ghana’s capital Accra. In Accra we stayed five days. This was a little bit unusual, but Aeroflot had only one flight a week, and at this time it was cheapest way fly to Africa and back. Today it is almost most expensive company and we do not use it anymore, except for flights inside Russia. We arrived Finland 23th of December, just for Christmas.
2010-05-09 - 1988 we flew to Malaga for one week holidays. On this trip we visited also in Ceuta, Morocco, Melilla and Gibraltar. Gibraltar is overseas territory of Great Britain. From Malaga we took a bus to La Linea, which is a border town of Gibraltar. In Gibraltar there is a cable car running top of the rock, where Barbary Macaques are living. Gibraltar is only place in Europe where you can see monkeys. I think that almost all tourist going to southern Spain, are also going to visit Gibraltar also. There is also airport and from UK there are straight flights to Gibraltar.
2010-05-11 - On our second around the world trip we visited also in Kiribati. We had Air Marshall Islands flight from Tuvalu and we landed to Tarawa Island. However we went first to Marshall Islands and after two days, when we came back, we stayed three days in Bairiki. At this time Bairiki was the capital of Kiribati. Before these islands were called Gilbert and Ellice Islands, but in late 70’s these islands were separated for two independent countries; Gilbert Islands’ new name was Kiribati and Ellice Islands’ Tuvalu. On the Gilbert Islands there are 16 atolls, and Tarawa is the second biggest of them, only Tabiteua is larger. Gilbert Islands are located on the middle of equator, Tarawa is situated to north of it, and Tabiteua to south of it. Total population on these 16 atolls is 85000 and Tarawa is most populated by 46000 inhabitants. From Tarawa we proceeded our trip to Tuvalu
2012-05-01 - We arrangrd our Pakistan Tour in Finland before we left. We paid also our trip to Gilgit and Hunza Valley. But unfortunately they cancelled this in Pakistan when we arrived there. Our guide in Karachi told us that some days before there was a incident on Karakorum road just before Gilgit. Some rebels were stopped a bus on the road and shooted all passengers. Our planning was travel same Karakorum Highway to Gilgit, but because of security we did not go. Instead we had possible to visit only in the border of this northern province. But better than nothing.
2010-05-11 - Näfels is the northern municipality of Glarus Canton in Switzerland. 2001 we were travelling by road via Näfels from Zurich to Sargans and stayed short time in the village. There are living 4000 people and it is located in nice valley between beautiful mounts. Glarus is mountainous canton and its highest mount Tödi is more than 3600 meters high and is located on Glarus Alps. I think that next time we are going to Switzerland, we are going to visit Glarus again, and to capital Glarus as well, which is a little bit bigger town as Näfels.
2010-01-02 - While traveling around India by train we stopped also in Goa. Goa is well known for tourists. For Finnish people it is almost only place where they are spending their holidays in India. Because we do not like very much places with a lot of tourists we did not stay overnight, just few an hours. We were coming from south(Mangalore) and going to Mumbai. Indian trains are always full, but we made all reservations already in Finland before our flights to India and everything was working well.
2010-01-02 - Buses are very cheap way to travel if you like this kind traveling and you have time enough. We booked our bus in Cuiaba(Mato Grosso) and traveled to Goiania. It is capital of Goias and there are more than million people living over there. Brasilia,the capital of Brazil is situated very close Goiania, about 150 kilometres away.
2010-05-11 - I was serving in United Nations Emergency Force (UNEF) two years in Egypt, and one year in United Nations Interim Force (UNIFIL) in Lebanon, but never in United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) in Golan Heights. However during my serving in UN, I visited to Golan many times. Since the Six Day War Israel has occupied most part of Golan Heights. Before war Quneitra was biggest town at the area, but when I visited there it was mostly ruined and evacuated. UN troops came to Golan 1974 and they are still serving there, but today there are not any Finnish soldiers anymore.
2010-05-11 - I had South African Airlines flight from Johannesburg to Moroni. Moroni is the capital of Comores and there are living about 65000 people. Grand Comoro is largest of three main islands of Comores, other ones are Moheli and Anjouan. Mount Karthala is the highest point of Grand Comoro. It is active volcano also, and have erupted many times during last years. 1988 I was walking on these lava fields, where was not any vegetation. In Moroni I stayed five days. Comoros was an expensive country to stay, because their official rate of exchange was very bad for tourists. From Moroni I had Air Mauritius flight to Nairobi, where I met Oili, who came from Finland to meet me there.
2010-05-11 - We were just come from Liechtenstein back to Sargans and we took a bus to Chur, which is the capital of Graubunden canton in Switzerland. We were going to Milano and stopped there. Chur is located in the nice valley between the Alps and there are less than 35000 residents living in the town. Graubunden is very mountainous canton, because of massive Swiss Alps. Best way to travel in Switzerland is own car, but buses are OK as well. From Zurich to Chur you can take train also, and it takes about 1,5 hours to get there.
2010-01-02 - Our last visit to Greece was when we were going to Santorini Island in Cyclades. We flew from Helsinki to Athens where we stayed couple of days visiting for example in Acropolis. Before in the same year when I was in Mt.Athos we flew to Thessaloniki and took bus to Ouranopoli, where we stayed four nights. My first visit to Geece was 1978 when I arrived from Skopje by train to Thessaloniki. 1980 I went by ship from Italy to Pireus and left with my UN fellow's by car to Finland. Greece is nice country to spend your holiday, at least I like it very much and will go there many times also later on.
2007-05-03 - We flew to Kulusuk from Reykjavik of Iceland. From Kulusuk airport there was helicopter transportation to hotel and vice versa. We stayed 3 days walking around Angmagssalik listening whining of thousands husky dogs.
2010-01-02 - My only visit to Grenada was 1987 when we were traveling around Caribbean Islands about two weeks. We were coming from Trinidad by LIAT flight. Capital St. George's is a small town and there are about 8000 inhabitants. I must say that I liked this town and after 2-3 weeks we are going there again. This time we are going to Grenadines as well, because it is own location on the MTP list. We slept one night in small hotel near harbour where many boats are coming. If we will find time enough we are going to stay a little bit longer next time.
2010-04-22 - Bequia Express ferry left Kingstown harbour at 8 AM and return price to Bequia Island was 35 East Caribbean Dollars each. Port Elizabeth is capital of Bequia. In the harbour there is Tourist Information Office and post office is just behind it. There are also couple of supermarkets and many bars and restaurants around the main streets. Bequia is the segond largest of the islands od Grenadines with population over 6000. If yoy want to visit there and do not like ferry and probably rough sea, you can also take small airplane from Kingstown. There are also many hotels to stay if you want to. We did not visit other islands at all. Easy islands to visit are for example Mustique, Canouan and Union Island.
2010-01-02 - Guadeloupe is French colony in Caribbean between Antigua and Dominica. We had return LIAT flight from Antigua. This was time when French government required French visa also from Finnish citizens who were entering into country. We had no visas and they kept our passports in Airport Police Office, but we had change to go out downtown. We stayed about 4-5 an hours in Pointe a Pitre(biggest town on the island) before flying back to Antigua.
2007-05-02 - I was first time Guam 1986 and now was my second visit. Our flight was from Ponhpei. Island is beautiful but today there are too much traffic, too many cars and too much noise. In my opinion it is not anymore the place what I call as paradise. Much changed in 14 years. We stayed only one night and continued to Koror in Palau.
2010-01-02 - On the way from Durango to Mexico City we stopped for one night in Guanajuato town which is capital of the same name state. It is situated about three or four hundred kilometres northwest of Mexico City. There are high mounts around and the town is located two kilometres high about sea level. Nice place to stay, fresh air and nice landscape.
2010-01-02 - We entered to China by China Airlines from Taipei to Hong Kong. From Hong Kong new airport we took a boat to Shenzhen. If you have not Chinese visa, you can get one in the harbour of Shenzhen. From Shenzhen we took a bus which was going to Guangzhou (capital of Guangdong) It was before called Canton. In Guangzhou we changed to other bus which was going to Zhanjiang. We came to Zhanjiang early in the next morning and bought tickets for Hainan ferry.
2010-01-03 - From Hainan we bought tickets for sleeping bus leaving to Nanning (capital of Guangxi) The bus was really excellent, everybody has own bed to sleep. Nanning is one of the biggest southernmost cities in China and it looks like any big city in wertern hemisphere. Our hotel was nice and staff was speaking good English. Next morning we took our course towards Pingxiang town in the Vietnamise border.
2010-05-11 - 1987 we flew Mexico City to Guatemala City. Guatemala is bordering with Mexico, Belize, Honduras and El Salvador and after Belize it is the northernmost country of Central America. Airport is located about five km from Guatemala City’s center and it is now completely renovated.1987 it was not in so good condition. But today much more tourists are coming to the country and old terminal had too much failings. Compared with population, Guatemala is the biggest country in Central America. Guatemala is famous about its Maya civilization and most of tourists wants go to see some ruins as the stepped pyramids, for example. Our next destination after Guatemala was San Salvador and we flew there by TACA Airlines.
2010-05-11 - I have three visits to Guernsey. Island is locating at English Channel between England and France, and it is situated closer France than UK. When I went there first time I took ferry from Weymouth in southern England. This year was 1978 and I proceeded my trip via Jersey to St. Malo. 2001 I made this journey with Oili from opposite direction. Our last visit was also from St. Malo. At that time we went to Alderney Island and we had Aurigny Airlines flight from Guernsey. In St. Peter Port there is a museum of French author Victor Hugo. During the reign of Napoleon III he went into exile and stayed in Guernsey on years 1855-1873. During this exile he wrote his most famous novel Les Miserables. Our Hotel was located opposite of museum.
2010-05-11 - We flew from London to Mexico City and from there we took a bus to Acapulco. Our meaning was to stay there at least two weeks, but we did not. Instead we took bus to the north and drove via Baja California to Tijuana. But we stayed four days and saw among other things La Quebrada Cliff Divers who dove down from 40 meters high rock. Six months after our visit the town was devastated by Hurricane Pauline and more than one hundred people died. Acapulco is biggest city in Guerrero, but its capital is Chilpancingo de los Bravo which is located about one hundred km to the north. There is good road between Mexico City and Acapulco, and it takes about 3-4 hours to go through.
2010-05-11 - 1986 I visited all the former colonies of Portugal in Africa. I got all visas in Lisbon and from Cape Verde I flew by Angola Airlines to Bissau where I stayed five days. There is not so much to see in Bissau and I was a little bit bored. My next destination was Sao Tome. 1990 I was travelling with Oili and we had Aeroflot flight from Nouadhibou, Mauritania to Bissau.During Soviet Union Aeroflot had flights to everywhere in Africa and these flights were cheap also. After couple days we started our trip by land to Gambia. I think that two times in Guinea Bissau is enough for me, and I’m not going there anymore.
2010-01-03 - This time we were traveling by train from Kunming in Yunnan. Guizhou's capital is Guiyang with about four million inhabitants. Guizhou is hilly and mountainous province. Guiyang is nice city to stay couple days or more. Air is fresh if you compare it with for example northern neighbor Chongqing. Chinese trains are cheap way to travel and if you take over night train you will save also one hotel night. We liked Guiyang very much. Anyway Guizhou is still part of old China.
2010-01-03 - We arrived Vapi town, which is situated in southernmost part of Gujarat, from small eastern state Dadra and Nagar Haveli. We were hungry and we went into nice looking restaurant to have something to eat and drink. We orderer beef and a bottle of beer but they told that they have only vegetarian food and no beer at all. We left out of restaurant, catched a taxi and drove to other state, some kilometres to west situated Daman, which is other part of Daman and Diu state. There was plenty of beer and also meet to eat. In every state has their own law and if you do not know this beforehand there will be this kind problems.
2010-05-11 - 1989 we made our first trip around the world. While staying in Port of Spain we got our visas to Guyana. After it we flew by BWIA to Georgetown. Our hotel was near travel agency and we went to reconfirm our tickets to Paramaribo next day. When they saw our tickets they told us, that there is not this flight at all. So we had nothing else to do, but take taxi from Georgetown to Surinam border. Taxi driver took 100 USD from this. On the border we crossed Courantyne River by small boat. On the border we also exchanged by 20 USD Surinam money. By this amount we stayed three days in good hotel in Paramaribo.
2010-05-12 - From Guangzhou we took a night bus to Haikou. It is the capital of Hainan Island and is located on the northern coast of the island. Bus trip takes approximately 8-9 hours to ferry harbour and 1,5 hours by ferry to Haikou. The buses in China are nice, in some of these you can even sleep. In Hainan our meaning was to take boat to Northern Vietnam, but when we asked some people, they did not now anything about this boat. Therefore we had to change our plan and take a night bus to Nanning and from there to Hanoi. Today Hainan is very popular tourist place where many millions people comes every year to spend their vacations. Best places to stay are on the southern coast of island. There is good road around the island and buses are leaving frequently from Haikou bus station to everywhere around the island.
2010-05-12 - My first visit to Port au Prince was 1987. Then I had Pan Am flight from Miami and my purpose was to stay there one night. I paid my hotel and after that I went out for a walk. However the town was as shock for me, and when I found travel agency I asked them, if there was any flights to Santo Domingo today. There was, and I changed my ticket, and did not stay over night there at all. After four hours my Eastern flight left Port au Prince airport, and its destination was Dominican Republic and Santo Domingo. Second time I was travelling with Oili and we had two weeks holidays in Puerto Plata, northern coast of Dominican Republic, and from there we had a day trip to Haiti also. Haiti is poor country and it is not as tourist place at all, but if somebody is searching something different, they can find it in Haiti.
2010-05-12 - After Bremen Hamburg has the least area of the states of Germany. I have been travelling more than twenty times through the city. Usually I travelled by train via Sweden and Denmark and couple times by car also. I have been travelling also by ferry to Travemunde, small town near Lubeck, and from there by train to Hamburg. I never spent the night there, but proceeded every time to somewhere else. With two million people Hamburg is a little bit too big city for me. I prefer cities under half million people and less.
2010-01-03 - Haryana was our first destination when we arrived in Delhi airport. We took taxi to Delhi railway station. There was rush-hour (it is all the time in India) but we found our train which was going to Chandigarh (capital) Our final destination was Shimla town in the mountain. In the way back from Shimla we stopped in Ambala, which is a small town in northern Haryana. We had four an hours time in Ambala before our Dehra Dun train was leaving.
2010-05-12 - 1992 we flew first time to Honolulu. We were going to New Zealand and on the way from Los Angeles we stopped for couple days in Honolulu. We stayed one day on Waikiki Beach and next day we walked to some other beach. There are eight main islands in the Hawaii Islands. Hawai’i is the biggest island and its southern point Ka Lae is also southernmost point of USA. We never been to other islands, but Oahu. Oahu is most populated of all islands. After two days relaxation we had our flight to Fiji. Next year we visited Hawaii again. at that time we were coming from Fiji and going to Los Angeles. Our next visit will be 2010.
2010-01-03 - Hebei is Chinese province which is situated around Beijing. If you are arriving to Beijing by train you must go through Hebei before reaching there. First time I was traveling through Hebei when my train was coming from Mongolia in Sep 1986. At this last time we were coming by train from Pyongyang in North Korea. Tangshan was only town where we went out of train and walked some time in the station. Of course this kind visit is not something to be proud of, but anyway I have been there.
2013-08-10 - We took train from Beijing to Harbin, which is the capital and largest city of Heilongjiang Province with about 6 million people. Heilongjianf is also the northernmost province of China. After staying one night in good hotel we flew to Vladivostok of russia. If you cross the border by train, it takes very much time and airplane is better alternative.the price around 150 Euros.
2010-07-11 - There are many possibilities how, and from where travel to Helgoland Island. You can go by boat and you can also take plane from Hamburg, Bremerhaven, Busum and some other places also. We selected Atlantis boat from Cuxhaven. Return ticket price was 39 Euros and it took about one hour and fifty minutes to go there. Helgoland harbour is very shallow and we had to move to smaller boat for landing. Helgoland consists of two islands, Hauptinsel is the main island and Dune, which is smaller island where airstrip is located. Land area is less than two sq km and population 1,300. Main island elevation is 40-60 meters and you can take lift from the harbour to upper level, where many hotels and restaurants are locating. Helgoland is famous its birds as well. For example Fulmars, Boobies and Auks are nesting there. Birds are nesting in the northern part of Hauptinsel and many birdwatchers are going there to see them. After few hours, good lunch and couple of cold beers, we returned back to Cuxhaven. From there we drove to Bremerhaven, where we stayed over night.
2010-01-04 - After slept one night in cheap hotel near Xian railway station we booked train in the morning. This time our destination was Zhengzhou city in Henan province. Henan is most inhabited province in China where are living at least 100 million people. Zhengzhou is situated on the south bank of Yellow River, which after Yangtze river is second longest river in China and one of the longest rivers in the world. in Zhengzhou itself has less than 10 million inhabitants, but population is still growing very fast. For us the city was a little bit too crowded with people and we decided to proceed our trip after some an hours.
2010-04-21 - Our next stop after Pitcairn was Henderson Island. It was still windy when we arrived there and captain told that passage through coral reef is too narrow to go. Here the coral reef around the island was much narrower than for example around Oeno Island. Captain said that he can try to ride over reef by big wave, but he took only one person at the time to the rubber boat. Everything went nice except a small damages for propeller. Henderson is the largest of Pitcairn islands and there are some nice beaches. Best landing place is located in North Beach near the place with group of palm trees. Because of only short visit we had not time to watch birds. There are four endemic birds living on the island, but I managed to see only Henderson Crake of them. The voyage takes about 13 hours from Pitcairn and there is a big colony of boobies which are coming to wonder your arriving.
2007-07-23 - Meanwhile when staying in Guernsey we visited also in Herm Island. Return ticket cost £9.This was my second visit to Herm, first one was about 30 years ago and everything was different now. Much more people traveling there today.
2010-05-12 - I have four visits to Frankfurt am Main, which is the largest city in Hesse state. Two times I flew to Frankfurt International Airport. It is biggest one in Germany ant third biggest in Europe. Hesse is located middle of Germany and it is one of these three larger states which has not shared border with any independent countries. Two times I came to Frankfurt by train. There is a good network of railways in Germany and when you buy railpass, it is not so expensive to travel by train.
2010-01-04 - Hidalgo is a small state a little bit north of Mexico City. While traveling around Mexico by bus we were returning towards USA border and we still had some states to visit. One of these states was Hidalgo. In Mexico City we bought tickets to Pachuca town. There was about 90 kilometres from Mexico to Pachuca, which is capital of Hidalgo. It was not big town, population less than 300 thousands. We had good lunch with cold beer before our return back to Mexico City.
2010-05-12 - 2006 we flew to New Delhi and started our round trip around India by train. First we took train via Ambala and Chandigarh to Shimla. It is capital of Himachal Pradesh and we stayed there one night in hotel, which was situated on the slope of big mount. Himalaya mountains are very close of Shimla, which altitude is 2200 meters. When you go by train, you have to change into other train in Kalka town (Haryana) That is, because from Kalka is only narrow gauge leading to Shimla. By this train it takes six hours to Shimla and on the way there are more than 100 tunnels to go through. Landscape in Himachal Pradesh is very beautiful, and it is a popular tourist place in summer time as well.
2010-01-04 - 2006 we were traveling around Japanese islands. We had Finnair flight from Helsinki to Nagoya. From Nagoya we had tickets to Sapporo town in Hokkaido Island. We came late in evening to Sapporo airport from where we took a bus going to downtown. In airport we also arranged our hotel which was situated near bus station. Hotels in Japan are very expensive, but my opinion was that this hotel was very cheap. At that time of the year it is very cold in Hokkaido and that was main reason why we stayed there only one night. Next morning was our flight to Tokyo and from there by boat to Ogasawara Islands.
2010-05-12 - 1987 we were travelling from Mexico to Bolivia and stopped in all countries between these two countries. To Honduras we flew from Belize City. Before Tegucigalpa we stopped in San Pedro Sula. Tegucigalpa is capital city with about 1,5 million inhabitants. So, it is quite big city, one of the biggest in Central America. It is locating inland, southern part of the country. In the north Honduras has a long coast of Caribbean Sea. Its length is almost 1000 km and more than one million tourists are coming to visit there every year. 2010 we are going to Honduras again. If we have time enough we will try visit to Islas de la Bahia as well.
2010-05-12 - I have seven visits to Hong Kong altogether. My first trip was 1977 when I went to Bangkok for two weeks holiday. From there I made three days trip to Hong Kong as well. After that I was there with Oili 1993, 2000, 2006 twice and also 2009 twice. 1998 Hong Kong opened its new airport on the Chek Lap Kok Island. Now you can go to China by boat from airport to Shenzhen and in Shenzhen you can also get your visa to China if you have not it beforehand. In my opinion Hong Kong new airport is one of the best airports in the world Our last visit to Hong Kong was on the way to Wake Island and to Hong Kong we flew from Manila.
2010-01-04 - Distance from Zhengzhou to Wuhan is about 500 kilometres. Wuhan was our next destination and it is capital of Hubei province. Wuhan is a big city with about 10 million inhabitants and it is situating in the north bank of Yangtze River which is a longest river in China. For me it is suprising to think that in one city has two times more population than in all Finland! But China is something different.
2010-01-04 - Our train traveling in China was almost finish when we arrived to Changsha which is capital of Hunan. After that we were returnig via Canton to Hong Kong and from there back to home. Into Changsha we arrived from Nanchang in Jiangxi Province, where we slept one night in hotel. When we came to Changsha we were a little bit hurry, because we had only few days left before our flight from Hong Kong. So we decided not stay over night there, but booked train going to Canton for same afternoon.
2010-05-12 - Hungary is often visited country for us. My first visit was 1978. At that Hungary was communist country, because of Soviet Union. It was terrific time and next time I went there after collapse of Soviet Union. Now Hungary is as any other country in Europe. Capital Budapest is built into both sides of River Danube. If you are interested about old buildings, there are many of them. I have visited to Budapest by train and by plane only. Last time we came there by Moldovian Airlines after visiting in Gagauzia.
2010-05-13 - Our Smyril Line ferry left from Bergen, Norway and stopped on the way on Shetland Islands and Faroe Islands. In Iceland we came to Seydisfjordur harbour and drove by bus to Reykjavik. We stayed in Reykjavik 10 days and during this we visited to Greenland as well. In Iceland we visited in Vatnajokull glacier and many other places as well. This was 1986, and it was our first mutual trip. 2009 we stopped at Reykjavik again, when we were going to Halifax, Canada. We flew by Icelandair from Helsinki.
2010-01-04 - Our first short visit happened early January 2006 when we were traveling from Spokane in Washington to Butte in Montana. It was winter time and there was muchf snow on the Montana mounts. As usually we traveled by Greyhound bus ant stopped in small town in northern Idaho called Couer d'Alene. This was nothing else but just a short stop. On July 2008 we were coming from Sacramento via Salt Lake City to Idaho Falls. After some hours we changed a bus going to Rexbury town from where we managed to catch smaller bus going to West Yellowstone in Montana side. I have also my relatives living in Idaho, but because I did not know their correct address' I did not even try to find them. But when I later came to Wisconsin to meet my other relatives my cousin called from Idaho and was a little bit angry for that.
2010-05-13 - My first visit to Paris was 1978. Then I came by train from St. Malo and I was going to Luxembourg. Paris is never been my favour city, but I’m been there many times, mostly by train. Because of Paris, Ile de France is most populated region in France. I think that Ile de France is one of the most visited locations on the MTP, and everybody makes visit to Eiffel Tower as well. River Seine is flowing through Paris, and it is second longest river in France. The banks of the Seine are on the UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites also.
2010-01-04 - We have many visits to Chicago, sometimes by bus, sometimes by airplane. Chicago is located on the shore of Lake Michigan and is one of the biggest cities in America. Because we do not like very much that big cities, we are been only stopping there and proceeding to somewhere else, not so big town. Chicago is also big crossing place for many bus routes and big highways are headed at least five different directions. River Mississippi makes a natural border of Illinois in the west where it is bordering with Iowa and Missouri. Illinois is not biggest states in USA if you are measuring them by land area, but it is however same size with Florida.
2010-01-04 - Our first short visit to Indiana was when our Greyhound bus stopped in small town on the shore of Lake Michigan called Gary. At that time we were traveling from Detroit to Chicago. After traveling in western states of Canada and USA we entered second time to Indiana. First time we were going to Chicago but this time we were coming from Chicago and going to Indianapolis. If we do not count states which are bordering with Atlantic Ocean Indiana is one of the smallest states in USA.
2010-05-13 - Ingushetia is located in North Caucasus. We took taxi in Kizliar, Dagestan and drove through Chechnya to Nazran town. Before 2000 it was capital of Ingushetia and it is biggest town of the country. Ingushetia is third smallest of the 83 federal subjects of Russia with area 3500 sq km only and is situated between North Ossetia and Chechnya. To Nazran you can go by train from Rostov, but best way is drive by car. When we were travelling by taxi from Ingushetia to North Ossetia, we had to pay 2000 rubles for guards in the border before they let us go through.
2010-01-09 - When you are traveling from Ulan Bator to Beijing you must go through Inner Mongolia province. If you are traveling for example by train it takes many hours before you will enter into other province. 1986 I was coming by train from Mongolia. First stop in China side was in small town called Erenhot which is situated in the border of Mongolia and Inner Mongolia, almost in the middle of Gobi Desert. After 500 kilometres we stopped in Jining town in south Inner Mongolia. As you can see, Inner Mongolia is very large province by it land area, but because of most part of it is desert not so many million people are living there.
2010-05-13 - 1980 I visited first time in Corfu. Then I was going from Italy to Greece by boat. 2001 I was travelling with Oili around Europe. From Brindisi, Italy we took a boat to Corfu and stayed there two days. Because of Easter almost all places were closed, also changing automatics. We had no local money and it was very difficult to get it, because also hotels refused to change. Only possibility was to go duty free shop in the harbour and buy something. We paid by 100USD and got change by Greek money. Corfu is the main tourist attraction in Ionian Islands. Corfu’s old town is also on the UNESCO’s World Heritage list.
2010-01-09 - Iowa's capital Des Moines is situated almost in the middle of state, in fout highways intersection. These highways are leading to Minneapolis in north, to Chicago in east, to Kansas City in south and to Omaha and Denver in west. We were traveling to Des Moines from Omaha, which is a largest city in Nebraska state. Des Moines is a little bit smaller by population than Omaha, about 0,2 million inhabitants in the center part of it. Iowa is not mountainous state at all, highest point is only about 500 metres high. All big mounts are very far, about 1000 kilometres away, Appalachian Mountains in the east and Rocky Mountains in the west. Iowa is situated between two big rivers, Mississippi in the east border and Missouri in the west border. In Des Moines we stayed only few hours before proceeding to Chicago by next Greyhound bus.
2010-05-13 - We got our Iranian visas in Helsinki before our flight to Trabzon, Turkey. From there we drove by bus via Ajaria and Georgia to Yerevan, where we slept one night. Next day we took bus going to Tehran. I think that this road over Caucasus Mountain in most spectacular in the world. It was snowing! when we arrived Tehran. We stayed only one night before proceeded our trip to Bahrain. Actually we were going to Kuwait, but they refused to sell tickets, because we had no Kuwait visas. We told that we can get them in the airport when arriving, but they did not believe us. They had an old information anyway. In travel agency they did not accept credit cards, but we had to pay our Bahrain tickets by cash!
2007-05-06 - Last election of Saddam Hussein and we got possibility to take part as a observers for this. We paid only our flight to Amman and after that all was free: hotel in Amman, transport- ation from Amman to Baghdad, 4 days in Sheraton Hotel+meals and transportation back to Amman. The winner of elections was already known before election was even finished. Nobody had. courage to vote against. But Saddam had no many months time before beginning of the war.
2012-02-22 - Today it is very easy to visit Kurdistan. There are many flights from Europe. We selected Dokan Air flight from Munich. Arriving to Erbil is very simple. They only stamp your passport and visa is not needed.Our flight was operared by Air Germania. It was night fly and we arriwed Erbil about 0245 in the morning and we häd no any hotel reservations. There are not any taxis in the airport. You have to take the bus to outside airport and taxis are waiting there. But taxis knows everything and our driver found easily one cheap hotel fos us.
2010-05-13 - I have two visits to Ireland. 1978 I was coming from Belfast to Dublin by train. After two beers in the Irish Pub, I continued my trip to Rosslare harbour and took a ship to Fishguard, Wales. At that time I was travelling alone. 2001 I travelled with Oili from Fishguard to Rosslare and onward to Belfast. At Shannon airport I have some stops also. Capital Dublin is same size as Helsinki in Finland and we have Irish Pubs also here. Irish people loves their Guinnes, but I did not like it very much. Today Ireland is popular tourist place at least for Finnish people. It is not too far from here, but landscape is completely different.
2010-01-09 - I started my train journey to Beijing from Irkutsk. To Irkutsk I flew from Helsinki via Moscow and Novosibirsk. Irkutsk lies on the bank of Angara River, where I was swimming during these two days which I spent in the town. There are more than half million people living in Irkutsk, so it is one of the largest town in Siberia. If you are traveling by train from Moscow it takes many days before you will arrive into Irkutsk. The distance between Moscow and Irkutsk is over 5000 kilometres. On the way you are staying in Irkutsk it is good change to visit Lake Baikal also. It is deepest lake in the world, more than 1,5 kilometres deep!
2012-05-01 - In my opinion Islamabad is most beautiful of big cities in Pakistan. Islamabad was built as a new capital just behind Rawalbindi, which was capital as far as Islamabad was completed. We arrived Islamabad by train from Lahore. On the way from railway station to hotel I stopped at Pearl Continental Hotel to by some beer and a botle of vodka. There are only 2-3 shops where you can by them. You can not by beer in any bars in the country. We stayed Islamabad alltogether four days. One day we made trip up to the mount, from where you can see Islamabad and Rawalpindi cities spreading some hundred meters lower. Some evening one airplane crashed just 2-3 kilometers from our hotel and all 127 people in the plane died.
2010-06-19 - While staying in San Pedro Sula we booked our two days visit to Roatan Island. It is main island of the Islas de la Bahia or Bay Islands as they are called by English. Flight time San Pedro Sula was about 40 minutes. We used CM Airlines which was not too expensive. At the Roatan airport we took a taxi which cave us 20 minutes drive up to best tourist area in the island. Our hotel was in the seaside and cost us 70 dollars a night only. There was a good supermarket at downstairs from where it was possible to by cold beer and wine. Hotel was very nice with the hammock in its terrace. It was nice to sleep there and listening singing birds on the trees. Roatan Island is nice place to spend your vacation. There is everything for tourists, nice beaches and everything else, what you ever need and want. It is one of the best places where I have ever visited so far.
2010-05-13 - Isle of Man is located in Irish Sea between UK and Ireland. 1978 I took a ferry from Liverpool to Douglas. Douglas is capital of Isle of Man and it is situated on the eastern coast of the island. IOM is publishing its own stamps, as Channel Islands and Lundy Island as well. After two days I took ferry to Belfast in Northern Ireland. 2001 I travelled with Oili from Belfast to IOM. This journey takes about three hours and it is not operating in winter time at all.
2010-05-13 - Because of my UN service in Middle East Israel is very familiar for me. I was working as UN Military Police in Tel Aviv and Eilat. In Israel there is much to see, for example the valley of Dead Sea. It is lowest point of earth, 420 meters below sea level. Dead Sea is really dead. Its water is too salty even for fishes to live. But it is easy place for swimming, and everyone wants to take picture where they are reading newspaper while floating in the water. In addition of my UN service we made one week visit to Eilat before Christmas 2000. From there we visited also in Jordanian side. Border crossing between Eilat and Aqaba was very easy.
2010-05-13 - We came from Budapest to Ljubljana by train and from Ljubljana we travelled by bus to Koper. From Koper we took another bus which was going to Pula, Croatian side of Istria Peninsula. Istria was new location for Oili and this was main reason for our visit there. Pula is biggest city in the peninsula with 65000 inhabitants. After one night in Pula, we took a bus to Trieste in Italia. We had to hurry, because of our flight from Venice.
2010-09-07 - Ivanovo Oblast is one of the smallest oblasts in Russia. Volga River is also the main river in this oblast. Ivanovo town is locating 250 km NE of Moscow and there are living less than half of million people. We were travelling from Kostroma and did not stay there over night. We stopped on the center and after walking around and seeing some churches and other buildings, taking many pictures of course, we continued our journey to Vladimir.
2010-05-13 - 1986 I was returning from southern Africa and flew via Nairobi and Accra to Abidjan. From Nairobi I flew by Ethiopian Airlines. Abidjan is one of the biggest cities in Africa and there are living 4-5 million people. Ivory Coast is bordering with five other countries, Liberia, Guinea, Mali, Burkina Faso and Ghana. Two first of these are still not visited countries to me. From Abidjan I had UTA flight to Lyon, France. 2002 I was in Ivory Coast again. At this time I was travelling with Oili by Air France from Paris.
2010-01-09 - Puerto Vallarta is not a largest town in Jalisco but maybe it is best place to spend your holidays, at least if you like sea. On the way from Acapulco to Baja California we stopped for one night in this nice town. There are also many nice beaches in the town full of tourists. We do not like them very much, so we did not go there, but walked around town looking old buildings and good restaurants.
2010-05-14 - We flew from London to Miami and started our trip around Caribbean. Jamaica was our second destination and we had Air Jamaica flight from Grand Cayman to Kingston. Jamaica is almost 250 km long island and its surface area is bigger than Puerto Rico’s, for example. Jamaica is English speaking country and it was before part of British West Indies. It is been independent country since of 1962. Capital Kingston was different 23 years ago, at least it was a little bit dirty and scruffy. We did not stay there more than couple days before leaving to Curacao by Antillean Airlines.
2010-05-14 - Jammu and Kashmir is located in Himalayan Mountains and is the northernmost state in India. In Delhi we took train to Jammu (city) Near railway station we found small hotel, where we slept one night before returned back to Delhi. Jammu town is situated on the south part of state and its elevation is only a little bit more than 300 meters. Distance from Delhi is 600 km, and if I remember right, it takes about ten hours by train. In Delhi we stayed one day before our flight to Srinagar on the next day. Srinagar is situated in Kashmir Valley and its elevation is 1,5 km. From Srinagar we flew to Leh, which is capital of Ladakh District or Leh District as it is also called. Leh’s elevation is 3,5 km and it is one of the highest towns I ever been.
2010-05-14 - We have many visits to Jakarta and also to other places in Java. With population about 130 million it is the most populated island in the world. However there are four bigger islands in Indonesia if measured by land area. Java is located between islands of Sumatra and Bali. Capital city Jakarta is situared in the western part of the country and there are living almost ten million people. Because of so many people, traffic is terrific, at least when is a rush time. Most tourists do not stay in Java, but are going into neighbour island Bali.
2010-01-09 - I have been four times in Jersey, two times I was coming from Guernsey direction and two times from Saint Malo in France. Jersey is the biggest of Channel Islands. Distance from Saint Malo to Saint Helier, capital of Jersey, is about 60 kilometres and takes less than two hours. Condorferries has several cruises every day, so you must just go to harbour and buy your tickets. Our last time we were going to Alderney Island, so we proceedid to Guernsey from where we took small airplane which was flying to Alderney. Usually everybody coming from French direction will proceed to Guernsey also which is provided by many daily cruises from Saint Helier.
2013-08-10 - Train from Khabarovsk to Birodizhan takes 2-3 hours. We did not stay over night there, because our timetible was limited. But in three hours you can see enough of this town, because it is very small, only 75 thousand residents. Oblast is one of the smallest in Russia, about 175000 people. From there we continued our trip to Sakha Republic.
2010-01-09 - Jamshedpur is largest city in Jharkhand with population more than one million. Jharkhand is very new state, separated from Bihar 2000. This time we were coming from Kolkata, which was before known as Calcutta. Our next destination was Raurkela in neighbor state Orissa. In Jamshedpur we did not stay overnight, but catched first train which was going to our direction.
2010-01-09 - Nanjing is capital of Jiangsu. My first visit there was 1986 when I flew from Beijing. This last time Oili and me traveled by train. Nanjing is a big city, about 8 million inhabitants, two times more than in Finland! Today there are very many cars which are polluting the air. On my first visit there was much more bicycles than cars. Traffic jams are normal on the streets today. Some peoples like these big cities, but I do'nt. I have lived half of my life in small village with less than 100 people. That is why big cities are looking a little bit crazy for my eyes. Our next destination was Shanghai, where population was about 20 millions!!
2010-01-09 - When we were returning from Fujian we came to small town in Jiangxi called Yingtan. From there we catched a bus which was going to capital Nanchang. Nanchang is a large modern city as well with population about four millions. Again I was wondering how many people there are living in China. I had feeling that there is not any small town in this country. From Nanchang we proceeded to Changsha. Our traveling in China was this time almost finish and on Christmas Eve we would be in Shenzhen near Hong Kong.
2013-08-11 - On the way from Beijing to Harbin we went out of train in one station of Jilin Province. This Province was before known as Kirin and it is bordering with North Korea. We did not want to stay there longer, just stopped for a little walk.
2010-05-14 - During the years when I was serving in UN troops in Middle East, I visited many times in Amman. For us it was easy to cross the border between Israel and Jordan. Usually we used Allemby crossing. Today it is open for civilians also, but you have to arrange your Jordan visa before you go, because it cannot be obtained at the border. 2000 I was with Oili in Eilat and we visited to Aqaba also. 2002, on the way to Baghdad, we flew by KLM to Amman and stayed one night before our bus was leaving to Iraq. When we came back we stayed two days more, because our bus trip was very burdensome, six hours at the border, etc. Even if I have so many visits to Jordan, I have to confess that I never been to Petra, which is the main tourists attraction of the country.
2010-05-14 - 2008 we made a long bus trip in Brazil and Argentina. During this trip we visited in all Argentina’s provinces, for example. We took our bus in Resistencia in the evening and arrived Jujuy early in the morning. Jujuy is northernmost province of Argentina and is bordering with Chile and Bolivia. Capital San Salvador de Jujuy is located 1,2 km above sea level, because the Andes are very close. October was nice time, because jacaranda trees were blooming around the town. Our next destination after Jujuy was Salta, which was located 100 km to south from San Salvador de Jujuy.
2010-07-11 - Jura is the newest of the cantons of Switzerland, created 1979. Capital city Delemont has about 11,000 inhabitants and it is located 30 km from Basel City. Jura Mountains is located between rivers Rhone and Rhine, from France to Switzerland and is not so massive as Alps in the south. We arrived to Delemont from Solothurn, and because it was late afternoon we decided to stay one night there. We just drove some kilometres to south and found small hotel in the beautiful valley. Next morning on the way to Berne, we saw Mont Raimeux, which is the highest mountain in Jura canton, but no much more than 1,300 m high.
2010-05-15 - From North Ossetia, where we stayed one night in Beslan town, we proceeded to Nalchik which ia the capital of Kabardino Balkaria. This republic is the sixth smallest by area of 83 federal objects in Russia. Caucasus’ Mountains highest mount Elbrus is located in southern part of Kabardino Balkaria, near the border of Georgia. Mount Elbrus is the most attractive tourist destination in the republic. It is over 5600 meters high. There are also five more 5000 meters high peaks in Kabardino Balkaria. Nalchik is situated almost in the middle of republic and its altitude is about half kilometres and population consists 300000 inhabitants. This means that every third of population of Karardino Balkaria Republic lives in the capital. Same named river is flowing through capital. We did not stay in Nalchik, but continued our trip to western neighbour republic, Karachay Cherkess.
2010-05-15 - 2001 we visited to all main islands of Indonesia. Our route was, Sulawesi, Irian Jaya, Moluka, Bali, Java, Kalimantan and Sumatra. Into Kalimantan we flew from Jakarta to Pontianak by Pelita Air. Pontianak is located some kilometres south from equator in the western coast of Borneo, about 200 km from Kuching in Sarawak. Pontianat is situated on the delta of Kapuas River, which is the longest one in Indonesia. We slept one night in the three star hotel and got very good service. We did not see many other tourists in the town, maybe they were in the jungle. But we do not like the leeches and stayed in downtown.
2010-05-15 - After spent our Christmas in Minsk, Belarus, we took train and went to Kaliningrad. We obtained our Russian visas beforehand in Helsinki, so we had not any kind problems at Kaliningrad border. Kaliningrad is bordering with two NATO countries, Poland and Lithuania. Before secon world war Kaliningrad Oblast was called East Prussia, and its capital city Kaliningrad was called Königsberg. We stayed three days in small ship hotel and visited inside one submarine also. It was as museum and open for tourists. Usually we do not go into any museums, but there we visited in Kaliningrad Amber Museum as well. Because of winter time sidewalks were in very bad condition, and they were even dangerous for pedestrians because of slippery of an icy roads.
2010-01-10 - We were traveling by train from Moscow to Mahachkhala in Dagestan. Near Dagestanian border the train stopped for 45 minutes in small Kalmykian town called Artezian. After 1760 kilometres traveling it was nice to go out from the train. It was night time and we just walked around railway station and bought something to drink and eat. Almost in every station they are selling smoked fish. It tastes good and is not very expensive, about 100 rubles or something. Vodka is also cheap and they are selling it every station where train is stoping.
2010-09-07 - We left Podolsk early in the morning and drove to Kaluga Oblast. Kaluga is a small oblast and its same named capital is located 150 km SW of Moscow. By bus it took about two hours. This was a day when we were driving through three oblasts and we stayed only short time in Kaluga. Trains from Moscow to Kaluga are leaving from Kievskaia station. Couple trains a day are going to Kaluga only, but many others will proceed to Kiev and Odessa in Ukraine.
2010-05-15 - 2009 all regions of Japan came as new locations on the MTP list. We were just been there few years earlier, but did not visit all these regions. So, we took Turkish Airlines plane from Helsinki and flew via Istanbul to Osaka. In Helsinki we obtained our one week Rail Passes as well, because in Japan we travelled by train only. Because it was late evening we stayed one night at the airport hotel, before started our rail trip. Osaka is a big city with almost three million inhabitants. Japanese high speed trains are very comfortable. We travelled by Shinkansen trains only.
2010-01-10 - When we arrived to Wichita in Kansas we were already traveled by Greyhound bus ten thousand miles and been sitting in the bus over 8 days. Now it was time to take our fifth night in hotel on this trip. Wichita is largest city in Kansas where we were coming from Oklahoma City. But it is not capital of Kansas. That is Topeka which is located about 200 kilometres northeast of Wichita. Next day we took bus to Topeka before proceeding to Kansas City and Missouri.
2010-05-15 - First time visited to Tokyo. I had Northwest Orient flight from Seoul, South Korea to Narita Airport. In Tokyo I spent two days before flying to Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands. Second time I was travelling with Oili and we flew from Sapporo in Hokkaido Island. At that time we had hotel reservation in Tokyo, but Tokyo is a big city and even for taxi driver it took much time, before he found our hotel. It was however situated near the harbour, from where our Ogasawara Maru ship was leaving to Ogasawara Islands. During our last visit 2009 we just drove through Tokyo on the way to Tohoku Region.
2010-01-10 - At that time we traveled by taxi. If you have 3 or 4 passengers this is cheap way to travel. Caucasian Republics are very small and distances between republics are very short. We came to Cherkessk from Pjatigorsk in Stavropol Krai. Cherkessk is capital of Karachay- Cherkessia with about 120000 inhabitants. Elbrus is highest mount in Europe and is situated on the border of Karachay-Cherkessia and Kabardino Balkar Republic. We decided not to go there and anywhere it is easier to make this trip from Kabardino Balkar side I think. From Cherkessk we continued to Maykop in Adygeya.
2010-05-15 - Karelia Republic is bordering with Finland approximately 700 km. We have three visits to its capital Petrozavodsk, on the Lake Onega. A large part of Karelia was before part of Finland. However 1939 Russian attacked to Finland and we lost big part of our land area for them. 1941 Finland attacked to Karelia and we got our land back, but 1944 Russian took it again. During Winter War Nov 1939-Mar 1940 and Continuation War, Jun 1941-Sep 1944, 97000 Finnish men were killed by Russia. I lost many of my relatives also, three uncles and four cousins. Also my mother’s first husband was shot. So, everybody knows that I have not much sympathy for Russians.
2010-01-10 - Mangalore is the main port city in Karnataka. Capital Bangalore is situated in half way of Chennai and Mangalore. We were just been in Lakhadsweep Islands and coming from Cochi in Kerala. It was late afternoon when we arrived to Mangalore and we were talking why not to take one night in hotel, because we had time for this. We found cheap one near railway station and slept well before proceeding our train journey to Goa next morning.
2010-05-15 - We obtained our Kazakstan visas from Kazakstan Consulate in St. Petersburg. We travelled by train from Helsinki to Kazakstan’s capital city Astana. Our destination was however Almaty. more than 1000 km south from Astana. Almaty was the capital of the country until 1997. Because all trains which we asked were full booked, we had to take taxi. It cost us 200 Euros. Until 1992 Almaty was called Alma Ata. After dissolution of Soviet Union Kazakstan got independence 1991, and now it is ninth biggest country in the world with more than 2,7 million sq. km. In Almaty we stayd couple days and during this period we obtained our Kyrgyzstan visas from their embassy.
2012-09-04 - On the way from Novosibirsk to Abakan we had a stop in small town called Tayga (or Taiga) We had good time to walk around the station. Same happened also in Mariinsk where whe had almost half an hour time to take photographs and make some shoppings. When returning back from Abakan we went out of train in Tayga and from there drove by taxi to Tomsk, without staying over night in Kemerovo Oblast.
2010-01-10 - After 11750 miles bus traveling we came to Louisville in Kentucky. We were coming from Indianapolis and going to Nashville Tennessee. Louisville is situated on the south bank of Ohio River which is bordering Indiana and Kentucky and also Ohio and Kentucky. Ohio River is tributary of Mississippi River and it is about 1000 miles long. Kentucky is mainly a low area without high mountains as all states around Mississippi River. After few hours of our arrival we were traveling again. Distance to Nasville was about 190 miles.
2010-05-15 - I have more than ten visits to Kenya. Most of them I did when working two years in Sudan. In addition of capital Nairobi I made my visits to Mombasa, Nakuru, Kisumu, Tsavo, Amboseli and many other places as well. Nairobi is as the gateway to many countries in Africa. Kenya Airways is one of the best airlines in Africa and it has flights into most countries in the continent. Today Kenya is living by its National Parks and many tourists around the world are coming for safaris to see wild life of the country. For example Tsavo is famous its elephants and Amboseli its cheetahs. But these parks are full many species of animals and birds.
2010-01-10 - Kerala is second southernmost of Indian states. Capital Trivandrum is located in south, near border of Tamil Nadu. When we came back from Andaman Islands we took train from Chennai to Trivandrum. We had 5 days time before leaving from Kerala to north. So we tried go to Lakshadsweep Island during this period. We had not any idea when the ship was going there. Only what we knew was that perhaps this ship was leaving from Cochi. So we took first train to Cochi and found the office where these voyages were arranged. We were happy to hear that Tipu Sultan ship was leaving next morning. We bought our tickets and paid room for one night in cheap hotel near harbour. After four days we returned to Cochi and catched our train to Mangalore.
2013-08-11 - Khabarovsk is nice city, located 800 kilometres north of Vladivostok´, from where we arrived by train. River Amur is flowing through the city anf we stayed some hours on the bank. We slept one night in the hotel, which name was Guru, located about 1-2 km from railway station. After Vladivostok Khabarovsk is the largest city in Russian Far East, population more than half million. By area Khabarovsk Krai is fourth largest of Russian Federal subjects. We continued next day to Jewish Oblast and Birodizhan, by train ofcourse.
2012-09-04 - Our train from Novosibirsk arrived to Abakan early in the morning. Abakan is the capital of Khakassia Republic with population of 160,000. Yenisei River is flowing through it. If you are travelling by land up to Tuva,Abakan is the town, where you have to arrange your transport. There are many taxis waiting other side railway station.
2010-05-16 - On the way from Moscow to Nowy Urengoi we stopped in Surgut. It is the capital of Khanty Mansy. Khantia Mansia is the ninth biggest oblast in the Russia by the area of more than 500000 sq km. On the way to Nowy Urengoy we stopped in this town and bought some food and drinks from the sellers of the station. Surgut has population of 300000 and it is one of the biggest cities of Siberia. Because we do not like Russia very much, we only stopped there and did not stay over night. We got our point and it was enough.
2012-05-01 - A new name of NWFP province is Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. When we left Islamabad we first drove through Abbottabad town, where Osama bin Laden was killed. Today his house is destroyed and we did not visit there at all. In Khaghan Valley we stayed one night only, because there was still snow and our hotel room was very cold. Northern part of the province is very beautiful area with many high mounts. Capital Peshawar is located near Afghanistan border. We stayed there one night also.
2010-05-16 - On the way to Yamalia we stopped also in Kirov. Kirov is the capital of Kirov Oblast and there are living about half million people. Our train did not stay long time in the station, but we got our point and this was most important for us. I do not like Russia, but there are 83 MTP points to get and Kirov was one of them.
2010-05-17 - From Moscow we took our train to Syktyvkar. Syktyvkar is the capital of Komi Republic in Russia. Komi is bordering to Ural Mountains in east. In the north it is possible to cross Ural Mounts by train from Vorkuta to Labytnangi in Yamalia. We did not go there, but stayed couple days in Syktyvkar only. Our hotel was situated on the western bank of Sysola river.
2010-05-17 - We had Air Koryo flight from Beijing. We stayed ten days in North Korea and visited in Panmunjom on the demilitarized zone also. There are some rules for tourists. For example you can not go outside of hotel without local guide. We saw Arirang Festifal also. It is annual event and hold in the Rungrado May Day Stadium in Pyongyang. Back to Beijing we travelled by train. If you like abnormal countries, North Korea is right place for you.
2010-01-10 - When I came back home from Sudan after working there two years, I left immediately for my Far East Tour. I stayed one night in Soul where I flew from Taipei by Cathay Pacific. In this time of the year it was not very warm in there and I was almost freezing. Because of that I proceeded in the morning via Tokyo to Saipan in Northern Mariana Islands.
2010-05-17 - We have two visits to Kosovo. First time we had Malev flight from Budapest to Pristina 2003 and we stayed there three days. I met there some Finnish UN soldiers as well. UN troops are been there from the year 1998, and they still are. Our second visit was 2008 when I went to visit Mt Athos. On the same way we visited in Macedonia and Serbia as well. From Thessaloniki we came by train to Skopje and from there by bus to Pristina. There is scheduled bus service between Skopje and Pristina.
2010-05-17 - After visited to Wake Island, we flew to all Micronesian islands as well. After one night in Chuuk we had flight to Kosrae. There are three Island Hopper flights by Continental Micronesia a week between Guam and Honolulu, and has four stops on the way, also in Pohnpei and Kwajalein. Kosrae is not very large island, 110 sq km only, but it is very beautiful. I liked it much more than Yap and Chuuk islands and two days was not too long time to stay. There are not many hotels in the island, but not so many tourists are going there. Our hotel was near Lelu village which is administrative center of Kosrae.
2010-09-07 - Kostroma is also a part of Golden Ring and we stayed there one night. Our hotel’s name was Volga and it was situated on the bank of Volga River, where we had nice sight from our room. Kostroma city has population less than 300,000, but there are many nice churches. One of the main sights is Ipatiev Monastery on the bank of Kostroma River. By area Kostroma Oblast is a little bit smaller than Latvia for example and there are living less than 800,000 people only. It is possible to reach Kostroma by train from Moscow, but there are only one or two trains a day going there.
2010-01-10 - We were traveling by taxi all the way from Dagestan to Rostov. To Krasnodar town we arrived from Maykop in Adygeya Republic. Because Rostov was our destination for this day we did not stay a long time. We just changed to another taxi and continued our trip. We were happy to got through Caucasus Republics without problems.
2012-09-04 - On the way from Novosibirsk to Abakan we also stopped in Achinsk. It has population of 110,000 and it is located on the bank of Chulym River. Trans Siberian Railway is going through the town.
When we went from Abakan to Kyzyl, we drove through southern Krasnoyarsk areas as well. We did not stay over night there. After Sakha, Krasnoyarsk is the second largest federal subject in Russia, 2,3 million square kilometres, from Arctic Ocean near to Mongolian border.