Destination Guides

Beautiful places and spaces, Destination Guides

Oman – Birkat Al Mawz

Oman – Birkat Al Mawz

I read recently that Oman is actively trying to embrace tourism, but it’s not yet that evident all over. The country has built all its five star hotels in one city, most of them far enough out of Muscat so nobody ever actually leaves the resort. There is an outrageous […]

November 7, 2012 ×

Culinary Travel, Destination Guides

The liveliest village in France -Eygalieres, population – 1877

The liveliest village in France -Eygalieres, population – 1877

The Bar du Progress is heaving. There’s not a chair to be found outside. The language is French, only French out here. The locals know what the tourists don’t – coffee first, then shop. The busier it gets, the merrier it gets, and the longer they stay. It’s never too […]

August 29, 2012 ×

Culinary Travel, Destination Guides

Oh my Gordes

Oh my Gordes

Some French villages are real. They have prospered and struggled with the ages and the ebb and flow of humans – the traits of the inhabitants varying as much as the quantity. One century, a byroad brings trade and wealth. The next war and desolation. Children leave for the big […]

August 18, 2012 ×

Beautiful places and spaces, Destination Guides

The holiday bubble – Les Maldives

The holiday bubble – Les Maldives

I know, I’ve been gone for a while. I’ve been trapped in that holiday bubble, and known that as soon as I start writing about it, the visions will fall out of my mind and onto the page. In a supernatural way, I won’t exist in the Maldives anymore. My […]

June 25, 2012 ×

Culinary Travel, Destination Guides

Amman, food, rainbows and salt

Amman, food, rainbows and salt

When I returned from Jordan, inivitably, people asked me if I enjoyed my holiday, and what my highlights were. “Amman,” I would say, “I could live there, I think…” “Oh, you went to Oman too?” They would ask. Why is that, do you think? It’s because the only place anybody […]

May 27, 2012 ×

Destination Guides

When running hot water is a luxury I could live without – Wadi Rum

When running hot water is a luxury I could live without – Wadi Rum

I must confess, I’m a little five-star. I think living in Dubai has done it to me – the surreal world where even mall toilets are glossy and four-star hotels have l’Occitaine toiletries to steal from the bathrooms. My husband used to tease me about it, until I dragged him […]

May 14, 2012 ×

Destination Guides

Petra – Ancient and pretty darn awesome

Petra – Ancient and pretty darn awesome

The walk is long, there’s no denying.The path is texturally treacherous rather than difficult. I find my feet slipping over ancient cobble slabs, polished with the feet and rain of hundreds of years. The soles of my shoes trap wicked prickly pebbles and my toes are covered in dust, powdered […]

April 22, 2012 ×

culture vulture, Destination Guides

Night Treasure at Petra

Night Treasure at Petra

I’m in a womb, with three hundred siblings. It’s dim, warm, quiet. All I can hear is the rebab, as its melancholy wail reverberates off the walls surrounding us, and the occasional murmur of one of my twins. I can see just the golden pinpoints on the cool sandy floor, […]

April 16, 2012 ×

Culinary Travel, Destination Guides

Orvieto – a castle on the clouds

Orvieto – a castle on the clouds

I’d seen Orvieto in my dreams before. Floating, a castle village resting on stormclouds. Close up it was a town of gallant knights and minstrels, pomp and power, madness and frivolity, a big bite of full-flavoured life. In reality, the clouds are stone, but it rests on its pedestal no […]

April 2, 2012 ×