About this blog
Welcome to The Idiot Traveller. This is a blog about travelling, the places we go, the people we meet and the things that happen while travelling.
It’s also a blog about the history, politics, society and events in and of those places
(Looking for my political blog? or tired of travel blogs Visit “The Emperor’s Clothes” for a dose of politics and social commentary)
Below here you can find the entire collection of posts on this blog, with the latest ones at the top.
I’d love you to comment or feedback (even negative feedback, if polite. Trolls and comments that are unpleasant will be removed)
If you’d like to more about this blog or its intent, please go to the About page.
Note that if you are looking for my blog on Politics and Social issues “The Emperor’s Clothes” you can find that here.
I hope you enjoy.
We tend to think of travel as a luxury and certainly in its impact on the planet, it is. And certainly mass travel for pleasure and recreation is a relatively recent phenomenon. But humans have been travelling for discovery, for research and for pleasure for thousands of years.
This blog is about all those issues.
Most things we read on travel are not designed to give us good information but simply to extract money. And they are often shallow and vacuous – which means we miss many of the best bits which, at least for me, is the opportunity to immerse myself in and learn about the fantastic societies we pass through and their culture and history.
The end result is that we end up going to places we don’t want to or shouldn’t go, at the worst possible time and with poor information. We all end being Idiot Travellers.
So when we go to a place we aren’t told, for example, that at time “x” it’s best not to go at all because you will share it with 2 million others. Or that just 20 minutes away is an equally beautiful place with virtually no visitors. Or that the beautiful old town will be full of drunken Britons/Germans/Australians (add relevant nationality) harassing passers by. No it will tell us what the advertisers want us to hear.
So we want to subvert that paradigm a little by giving you some alternate facts, laced with a little humour, some politics, some good information, some satire and some pictures. All in the cause of truth, of course. As well as lacing it with anecdotes about “travelling crazy” – namely the stupid things we do, see, hear and love.
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes,” according to Proust.
Travel gives you not only new landscapes but new eyes. Immerse yourself in different cultures and you cannot help but see things differently. This is blog not only about the places we visit and the cultures we experience but also about the good, bad and ugly we find along the way………
There is nothing worse than coming to a remote beach and finding it covered with rubbish – the pristine beach that has more rubbish than the local tip.
The supposedly secluded beach that is busier than Bourke St – you can scarcely see the sand for the bodies.
Or the room which is advertised as having a great view. It has one but you have to stand on a ladder to see it.
The four star hotel which has a toilet with more stains than the inside of your septic tank. And the bedroom with more cockroaches than you can find in Parliament House; and that’s before you count the insects.
Yes. Like me you hate all those things. All the bullshit you read about how wonderful places are and then you get there and you wish you had never got out of your Russian Gulag.
I can’t save you from those nasty experiences but where I find places to avoid (or great places to visit) I’ll say so. If somewhere I visit is so crowded you should only visit at 5 am then you’ll see that here. And you’ll find a lot of the history of places that you don’t normally get.
I tell you how I avoided the crowds (if I did). Or if not the crowds the drunken British (or Australian, or Swedish) bogan. Or at least some of those things. And it’s mostly true…but not always.
But the positive side is that travel gives you new perspectives… It can be a time of contemplation, openness, discovery…in all sorts of ways. So it’s one of the few times I write something approaching poetry.