Tag Archives: 365 Places

365 Places: Fort Cochin

Day 182, Fort Cochin, Kerala, India

Fort Cochin is such a fabulous place, I don’t know where to begin to describe how wonderful this place really is.

There are many layers of history and culture in Fort Cochin, making it a fascinating visual feast in an architectural sense. Elegant 15th Century Portuguese Mansions sit side by side with English Colonial Style buildings and colourful shacks painted many different colours. There are some beautiful churches, mosques and Hindu temples, again, sitting peacefully side by side.

The thing that is most wonderful is the people. Their warmth and good nature melts religious differences, making this community one of diversity and harmony. Many other countries could learn from Kochi people.

Here are a couple of maps that track some journeys around Fort Cochin, with links to my EveryTrail maps.

Cruising Fort Cochin
Cruising Fort Cochin

This is a combination of an autorickshaw ride and walking around Fort Cochin.
Cruising Fort Cochin at EveryTrail
http://www.everytrail.com/iframe2.php?trip_id=3047286&width=400&height=300EveryTrail – Find hiking trails in California and beyond.

Jewtown
Jewtown

This was an autorickshaw ride to the shopping centre of Jewtown.
Journey to Jew Town at EveryTrail
http://www.everytrail.com/iframe2.php?trip_id=3048045&width=400&height=300EveryTrail – Find hiking trails in California and beyond.

Over the next 9 days we will be exploring this fascinating place in some detail, so hope to share lots with you!

Advertisements

365 Places: Wayanad Forest

Day 181: Wayanad Forest and Dare Nature, Wayanad, South India En route to Kochi, we met our friends along the way and they took us to this magical place high up in the mountains – Dare Nature.

Wayanad © Di Ball 2014
Wayanad © Di Ball 2014

Dare Nature is a place for both adventure activities and for relaxation and meditation. We had a magical time enjoying the beautiful surroundings, fantastic food and good company. Here are some of the pictures from our stay.

There was also some challenging activities at night – fire walking and walking on broken glass. These activities were part of a motivational workshop for MBA students and we we also invited to participate. After getting my toes chewed by fishes earlier in the day, I graciously declined. Here are some great pictures of the fire walking and glass walking challenges:

If you are in South India and looking for something very different, we can definitely recommend spending some time at Dare Nature. Thanks Sajee for being such a wonderful host. We had a great time!

Us mob at Wayanad © Mahin Manu 2014
Us mob at Wayanad © Mahin Manu 2014

Details How to get there From Kozhikode: Kozhikode- Thamarassery – Old Vythiri, from here your take a right turn-travel up- almost 7 kms of which approximately 2 kms – off road. From Bangalore: Bangalore – Mysore – S Bathery – Kalpatta- Old Vythiri, from here your take a right turn-travel up- almost 7 kms of which approximately 2 kms – off road. Contact Dare 5000 Nature Campz & Resorts Vythiri, Wayanad Kerala, South India Pin: 673576 Tel: +91 8606500033 +91 8606500032 +91 9447951192

365 Places: Wedding at Bangalore Palace

Day 180: Wedding at Bangalore Palace, Bangalore, India

Today my post features some images and a video of an Indian wedding we saw at the Bangalore Palace.

It was so colourful and noisy – had it share!

365 Places: Bangalore Palace

Day 179: Bangalore Palace, India

Today we started our fabulous South Indian Mystery tour, curated by our dear friend and artist Di Ball. Our first destination was Bangalore Palace and we were very lucky that there was a wedding on when we visiting. Mr Wikipedia has this potted history:

Bengaluru Palace, a palace located in Bengaluru, India, was built by Rev. Garrett, who was the first Principal of the Central High School in Bangalore, now known as Central College.

The construction of the palace was started in 1862 and completed in 1944. In 1884, it was bought by the then Maharaja of Mysore HH Chamarajendra Wadiyar X. Now owned by the Mysore royal family, the palace has recently undergone a renovation.

The palace is full of very interesting (albeit questionable) objects and well as having beautiful architectural features. It is not a cheap place to visit by Indian standards – 440 Rupees for foreigners and you have to pay extra to take a camera or smart phone for pictures. It was worth it though to have a glimpse into Royal life in Bangalore.

Here are some of my photos.

365 Places: Merimbula

Day 178: Merimbula, New South Wales

Merimbula is just one of the many beautiful little towns that dot the south coast of New South Wales. The town is situated on the Merimbula lake and named after the Aboriginal word for ‘two lakes’. Merimbula is primarily a tourist town, renowned for its fresh rock oysters and annual Jazz Festival, which is held on the June Queens’ Birthday Long weekend. We stayed there one weekend a few years ago and it is a place I would love to visit again because of its beautiful beaches.

Image credit: http://www.penguinmews.com.au/
Image credit: http://www.penguinmews.com.au/

Merimbula is close to Bournda National Park, South East Forest National Park and the northern end of Ben Boyd National Parks. For walkers, check out the coastal walk which runs through Bournda National Park from Tathra to Tura Beach just north of Merimbula taking in coastal scenery. Southern Right Whales (less frequent) and Humpback Whales are big feature in the areas.

Images Credit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merimbula
Images Credit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merimbula

There are lots of fun things you can do in Merimbula including horse riding and roller coaster rides. I would love to check out Magic Mountain, Merimbula’s own theme park as it has a roller coaster and one of the best toboggan slopes in New South Wales.

365 Places: Ode to a Cappuccino, Charlie’s 1978

Day 177: Charlie’s Italian Restaurant, Darwin 1978

This post is about my love of coffee, in particular a cappuccino, from where it all began – celebrating my 12th birthday at an Italian restaurant in Darwin – Charlie’s.

Now I may have shared with you my penchant for a good coffee, particularly a cappuccino, but I am by no means a purist. I understand that an authentic cappuccino does not have chocolate on the top, and if this is the case, it is not the cappuccino I love.

What I love, is a strong coffee, topped with foaming frothy milk and drowning with chocolate powder. Around the outside of the rim is a crust of coffee, making the foam a taste sensation of bitter and sweet. It is the coffee of my childhood, of Italian cafes in Darwin and Brisbane in the 1970s and the 1980s. Moreover, it was not the coffee we had at home, which was flavourless in comparison (though my Dad still swears by International Roast).

Bit Strip - about reusable cups
Bit Strip – about reusable cups

My moment of truth happened when I was 12 at Charlie’s: my parents asked me after dinner if I would like a coffee and that is what I ordered – a cappuccino. It was nothing short of a sublime sensory experience – its aroma and flavour sang and I loved mixing the frothy milk into the rich dark coffee. From that first meeting, I know I had found something very special and delicious.

Charlie’s also had a reputation for his Cordon Bleu and Spaghetti, but my mum excels with these dishes – but a cappuccino was a new experience and one that I have loved now for over 30 years. Ironically I drink black coffee at home but I still love a cappuccino when I buy coffee – it just seems special.

Who else loves this kind of cappuccino? Would love your coffee stories 🙂

365 Places: Mollymook

Day 176: Mollymook, New South Wales, Australia

Image credit: http://www.breakersmollymook.com.au/?/attractions-and-activities/mollymook-beach
Image credit: http://www.breakersmollymook.com.au/?/attractions-and-activities/mollymook-beach

Today’s place is a little gem on the south coast of NSW with a great name – Mollymook. I first remember visiting Mollymook, when I was about 20. Not long after moving to Sydney, I travelled there for a long weekend. I remember it was a wonderful journey: a girlfriend had borrowed her boyfriend’s old VW Combie and we cruised our way down the coast on the old Princes Highway, singing along to Fleetwood Mac on the way.

The Australian Traveller website gives Mollymook a great writeup and also has some clues about how the place got its name:

It’s thought that the name Mollymook is a variation on “mollymawk”, the slang name sailors use for a type of albatross (from the Dutch mallemugge, meaning “foolish gull”.

Image credit: http://www.breakersmollymook.com.au/?/attractions-and-activities/surfing
Image credit: http://www.breakersmollymook.com.au/?/attractions-and-activities/surfing

We stayed overnight with some friends in Ulladulla and then spent the next day at Mollymook beach. I remember thinking at the time, that this beach was very beautiful and great for swimming and bodysurfing. Here is a blurb from the Visit NSW website:

Mollymook Beach is one of the South Coast’s most popular beaches. This golden stretch of sand has ideal conditions for experienced surfers, body surfers and anyone keen to learn how to surf.

Mollymook has more recently become famous as celebrity chef Rick Stein has a restaurant there – Bannisters. This restaurant is famous for fabulous seafood with an incredible ocean view. I haven’t been there yet, but it would be wonderful to experience this place.

365 Places: Tallinn

Day 175: Tallinn, Estonia

It is now more than 10 years since I visited the lovely city of Tallinn and it remains in my mind as one of the most beautiful examples of a medieval walled city. In 2004, I was very fortunate to go there to present a paper at the ISEA2004 Symposium, which was an amazing event in itself – see this summary by Brisbane media artist Keith Armstrong. I also wrote a review of an artwork presented by Trish Adams Wave Writer: Vital Forces (PDF), which was published in Eyeline magazine.

Toompea loss 2014CC BY-SA 3.0 Abrget47j - Own work
Toompea loss 2014CC BY-SA 3.0 Abrget47j – Own work

For a long time it was under Danish rule also being the birthplace of the Danish flag:

On the slopes of Toompea hill between the city wall and Lower Town is an open, garden-like area that happens to be the legendary birthplace of the Danish flag.

This relaxing spot is called the Danish King’s Garden because it was supposedly here that King Valdemar II of Denmark and his troops camped before conquering Toompea in 1219.

13th-14th-century Tallinn was part of the Danish Kingdom, marking the beginning of seven centuries of foreign rule in Estonia. The majority of the town’s population was formed of ethnic Germans who called the town Reval – a name which Tallinn was known for many centuries to come.

Mr Wikipedia says:

In 1285 the city, then known as Reval, became the northernmost member of the Hanseatic League – a mercantile and military alliance of German-dominated cities in Northern Europe. The Danes sold Reval along with their other land possessions in northern Estonia to the Teutonic Knights in 1346.

Danish King's Garden, Image Credit: http://www.tourism.tallinn.ee/eng/fpage/explore/attractions/old_town#!p_174827
Danish King’s Garden, Image Credit: http://www.tourism.tallinn.ee/eng/fpage/explore/attractions/old_town#!p_174827

It is a definitely place with some very rich history. I love that the town has undergone many name changes over the years:

In 1154 a town called Qlwn or Qalaven (possible derivations of Kalevan or Kolyvan) was put on the world map of the Almoravid by the Muslim cartographer Muhammad al-Idrisi, who described it as a small town like a large castle among the towns of Astlanda. It has been suggested that the Quwri in Astlanda may have denoted the predecessor town of today’s Tallinn

The origin of the name “Tallinn(a)” is certain to be Estonian, although the original meaning of the name is debated. It is usually thought to be derived from “Taani-linn(a)” (meaning “Danish-castle/town”; Latin: Castrum Danorum). However, it could also have come from “tali-linna” (“winter-castle/town”), or “talu-linna” (“house/farmstead-castle/town”). The element -linna, like German -burg and Slavic -grad originally meant “castle” but is used as a suffix in the formation of town names…The German and Swedish name Reval (Latin: Revalia, earlier Swedish language: Raffle) originated from the 13th century Estonian name of the adjacent Estonian county of Ravala. Other known ancient historical names of Tallinn include variations of Estonian Lindanise (see Battle of Lyndanisse), such as Lyndanisse in Danish, Lindanas in Swedish, and Ledenets in Old East Slavic. Kesoniemi in Finnish and Kolyvan (Колывань) in Old East Slavic are also other historical names.

One of the things I also remember was the great antique and secondhand shops and I found a lot of Soviet memorabilia, which tells a story about another layer of Tallinn’s past. There was also a great market, where I some beautiful souvenirs. Here is a photograph of the Christmas market, which looks just magical. I was there in September, so didn’t see any snow.

Tallinn Christmas Market, Uploaded by Nathan lund
Tallinn Christmas Market, Uploaded by Nathan lund

You can also access an online 3d app that shows you Tallinn Old Town:

Tallinn Old Town is listed in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The aim of the 3d.tallinn.ee is to allow anyone interested in this Medieval pearl to access the Old Town by using 3D computing technology.

Read more about the app and download the app from here.

References

World and Its Peoples, Volume 8 of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland. Marshall Cavendish. 2010. p. 1069. ISBN 9780761478966.

Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tallinn

Tallinn History http://tallinn24.info/tallinn_history.html

Fasman, Jon (2006). The Geographer’s Library. Penguin. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-14-303662-3.

365 Places: Filling in Some Gaps

Days 91 to 174

Today’s post is a feeble attempt to try and catch up from over three months of not writing. The bad habit of missing days started with a day here or there but now I find that I haven’t written for weeks. There is really no excuse, perhaps except that I have been caught up with a number of art projects, which should count for something 🙂

My subject today is the place I live, the capital city of Australia, Canberra. As an attempt to make up for missing 84 posts, at the end of this post are 84 places worth visiting around the region, some of which have already been written about. Although it is a numbered list, it is not a list of best to worst, it is only as list of places as they came to mind.

Last week Canberra and the Australian Capital Territory was determined the best place in the world to live, according a report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Canberra led the regional ranking while Australia topped the overall country rankings, followed by Norway.

The OECD ranked 362 regions of its 34 member nations in its survey. Seven areas were assessed: Health, Safety, Access to services, Civic engagement, Jobs, Education, Environment and Income.

image from http://www.oecdregionalwellbeing.org/region.html#AU8
image from http://www.oecdregionalwellbeing.org/region.html#AU8

One of the things I love about living in Canberra, is the many bushwalking trails both in Canberra and in the region. Only yesterday, we walked up Mt Majura, to do some exploring as part of a project I am developing for Long Time No See? On our way back down the mountain we came across some other walkers who were doing the Centenary Trail, having walked from Parliament House. This trail certainly looks challenging and perhaps something to pursue.

Here are some images from our walk.

My list of places to check out:

  1. National Art Gallery
  2. National Portrait Gallery
  3. Mt Ainslie
  4. Mt Majura
  5. Mt Stromlo
  6. Black Mountain
  7. Canberra Museum and Art Gallery
  8. Tilley’s, Lynham
  9. Ricardo’s, Jamison
  10. Lido Cafe, Belconnen
  11. Sanur’s, Belconnen
  12. Turkish Delight, Belconnen
  13. Canberra Contemporary Art Centre
  14. Gorman House
  15. Old Bus Depot Markets
  16. Canberra Trash and Treasure Market
  17. Brindabella Hills Vineyard
  18. Surveyor’s Hills Vineyard
  19. Edgar’s, Ainslie
  20. Jewel Of India, Civic
  21. Cotter Dam
  22. Casuarina Sands
  23. Mt Taylor
  24. Kismet, Manuka
  25. Rock Salt, Hawker
  26. Namadgi National Park,
  27. Tidbinbilla
  28. Braidwood
  29. National Library
  30. Essen Cafe, Civic (Great Coffee)
  31. Gus’ Cafe, Civic
  32. Adeche, Civic
  33. Indo Cafe, Civic
  34. Banana Leaf, Civic
  35. Canberra Hand Made Market, Civic
  36. Street Theatre, ANU
  37. The Gods, ANU
  38. PhotoAccess Gallery, Manuka
  39. M16 Gallery, Fyshwick
  40. Lavviz, Melba
  41. Barat’s, Belconnen
  42. Thai Foot&Spa
  43. Central Cafe, Queanbeyan
  44. The Q, Queanbeyan
  45. The National Film and Sound Archive
  46. The Parlour Room, New Acton
  47. Elaine’s Pies, Dickson
  48. Kaldi, Civic
  49. Book Lore, Lyneham
  50. Questacom, Parkes
  51. The Arboretum
  52. The Yacht Club, Yarralumla
  53. The Ottoman, Barton
  54. The Old Stone House, Bungendore
  55. Carrington Inn, Bungendore
  56. Gunna Doo Pies, Bungendore
  57. Lake George Hotel, Bungendore
  58. Bungendore Wood Works Gallery
  59. Murrumbateman Field Days
  60. Jeir Creek Wines
  61. Gallahger Wines (Great Wine)
  62. Poacher’s Pantry
  63. Pankhurst Wines, Wallaroo
  64. Ruchi, Belconnen
  65. Indian Affair, Civic
  66. Coppin’s Crossing
  67. Black Mountain reserve
  68. Wallaroo Wines
  69. Chairman & Yip, Civic
  70. Courgette Restaurant, Civic
  71. Silo Bakery, Kingston
  72. Delhi 6, ANU
  73. Pork Barrel, Parkes
  74. Book Plate, NLA, Parkes
  75. Lemongrass, Woden
  76. Belluci’s, Woden
  77. Mee Sing, Lyneham
  78. Suko Thai, Yarralumla
  79. Beaver’s Gallery
  80. Jerrabombera Wetlands
  81. Sage Restaurant
  82. Kingsland Vegetarian, Dickson
  83. Cholos, Dickson
  84. Two Sister, Lao Thai, Dicskon

There you have it. 84 places well worth going – to eat, drink, walk and play 🙂

365 Places: St Kevin’s Arcade

Day 89: St Kevin’s Arcade, Auckland, Aotearoa NZ

Today was our first day exploring K Road, the site of my latest Augmented Reality project: Finding the Ghosts of K Road. We met up with K Road historian, Edward Bennett, who has generously shared with us much of the local history of this part of Auckland.

We had coffee at Alleluya, a wonderful coffee shop in St Kevin’s Arcade. St Kevin’s is a lovely 1920s arcade with many of the original shop fronts, complete with lead lighting windows, which feature lots of fab recycled fashion and secondhand goodies.

St Kevens : Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 370-9315
St Kevens : Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 370-9315

St Kevin’s was originally the site of a mansion which was the home of Lawrence David Nathan. Here is some of the history of the original site as documented on the K Road website:

In 1845 the merchant David Nathan built a house for himself on the Karangahape ridge with a view of the fledgling town of Auckland (which at that time extended no further than about Victoria Street)…In 1916 the Nathan family gave a 20ft right of way along the eastern boundary of their St.Kevens property to serve as the entrance to Myers Park from Karangahape Road.
The Nathans were possibly already contemplating moving from their house, as indeed they did around 1918. Their house, St Kevens, was demolished around 1922 and as a result of their gift part of the site was redeveloped as St Kevin’s Arcade in 1924.

St Kevens certainly was an impressive building and the image of the dining room shows the elegant life that the Nathan family had in this house.

Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 370-9300
Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 370-9300

It is really exciting to be finally discovering these places in the flash, rather than through old photographs and Google Street View. After our coffee, Edward took us for a walk around some of the places that are explored in Finding the ghosts of K Road. I feel like I have only just scraped the surface of this fascinating place in my project and hope to learn more over the coming days.