Tag Archives: Brisbane

Thoughts on The Lonely Planet Guide to Experimental Travel: Linda Carroli

Introduction

We are very pleased to welcome a new contributor to Geokult Travel – Linda Carroli. Since the mid 1990s, Linda and I have been good friends and have collaborated on many art and media projects. Linda is an Australian based writer and urban practitioner, who also has consulting experience across a broad range of fields – art, community development and heritage. She is internationally recognised for her writing and contribution to the arts, winning many awards. We hope you enjoy Linda’s thought-provoking writing and commentary on travel.
Tracey Benson

Book Cover: The Lonely Planet Guide to Experimental Travel
Book Cover: The Lonely Planet Guide to Experimental Travel

The Lonely Planet Guide to Experimental Travel by Linda Carroli

This is the first blog post of many I hope to share on Tracey and Marty’s Geokult Travel blog. In my posts, I will explore more unusual and unexpected aspects of travel, tourism and travel writing. This first post is a musing on The Lonely Planet Guide to Experimental Travel by Rachael Antony and Joël Henry (The Laboratory of Experimental Tourism). While the book is now nearly a decade old, having been first published in 2005, it continues to enthral and enhance a travel itinerary. In a sense the book offers ‘gamified’ travel in a way that makes for a sense of difference and play – experiencing differently or playfully. ‘Gamification’ means the application of game dynamics and processes to non-game contexts.

‘Experimental Travel’, also known as experimental tourism, is acknowledged by the authors as difficult to define. They describe it as a “playful way of travelling, where the journey’s methodology is clear but the destination may be unknown”. They suggest that the only requisite for such an approach to travel is an adventurous spirit. Discovery and exploration are multiplied by playing some of the games or following some of the simple instructions. The instructional nature of experimental is particularly interesting: the acceptance of constraints, such as directions, help redefine experiences.

The Lonely Planet Guide to Experimental Travel provides a catalogue of 40 experiments for you to try as well as details the results of experiments undertaken through the Laboratory of Experimental of Tourism.

The book includes methods drawn from the Situationists such as dérivé, as well as Dada and Surrealist style games. Psychogeography, mythogeography and flânerie are also in the mix. Imagine throwing a dice or coin to make decisions about your tourist experience and to define your travel itinerary. Have you ever considered spending 24 hours in an airport or journeying from airport to airport? Airports have been described by anthropologist Marc Augé as a ‘non-place’, an institutional environment designed to expedite transit and passenger conveyance, though strangely reminiscent of a shopping mall.

The Lonely Planet Guide is but one resource for experimental tourists, and will not placate everyone’s sense of adventure. Road Junky, for example, describes it as ‘sanitised’ and has compiled a list of 101 experimental travel ideas available online, with many of them prompting intercultural and interfaith excursions (not to mention national security concerns!), such as visiting every Muslim country in the world. Initiatives in Countertourism are attentive to the heritage tourism experience and encourage:

innovative consuming, intervention and even ‘infiltration’ to transform the way that the heritage industry and its sites are visited, looked at, experienced, conserved, managed and changed.

Technologies, such as GPS and GIS, and social media can also enhance the experience. Perhaps there’s another guide to be written about experimental travel using social media e.g. You arrive in a place and tweet asking for advice on a good place to eat, go to the first recommendation. You can continue to co-design your travel. Many of the experiments are open-ended urban incursions, they are ambulatory and constrained. If you have doubts, try it locally first. Try backpacking in your home city, or taking a line for a walk in your neighbourhood. Part of the challenge lies in figuring out how willing you are to relinquish some of the decision-making by following simple instructions and venturing into the unknown or unplanned. While some aspects of the journey are pre-figured, the route and the destination are not.

[NOTE: You are always responsible for your own safety when using experimental travel guides or practicing experimental travel. The author and publisher of this blog disclaims any responsibility for and liability for loss or injury in the event of experimental travel.]

Biography

Linda Carroli is a Brisbane-based writer and urban practitioner. Her consulting work has included studies on visitor experience, tourism infrastructure, cultural and heritage tourism, and destination management.

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Photowalking in Villaneuve

This is a post from Garry Benson from late in May when he was in Queensland. It has some beautiful images of the area around Somerset Dam in Queensland.

Images and text © Garry Benson 2014

Photowalking in Villaneuve

I’m staying with friends in a cottage next to the vast Somerset Dam in the Village of Villaneuve. Villeneuve is a very small village in the Somerset Region, Queensland, Australia, The town is named after the railway station, which in turn took its name from Frank Villeneuve Nicholson, owner of the property Villeneuve.

I arrived on Sunday night from Brisbane and went for a Photowalk last night and again at dawn this morning. Here are some of my images, unedited (apart from my watermark) and not in any order. I often find that sunset and dawn give the best opportunities for great photos. The light changes quickly but subtly and if you take lots of shots you’ll always end up with some interesting images.

© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014
© Garry Benson 2014

365 Places: The Valley Markets

Day 56: The Valley Markets, fortitude Vally, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Today, I am posting about a favourite market that was a regular haunt when I was living in my home town of Brisbane.

The Fortitude Valley Markets, affectionately known as The Valley Markets, is a great place to look around, check out some great art and craft by local artists and designers and then head to one of the Valley’s many coffee shops to escape the midday heat. It is also a market which always surprises, as the market stalls vary from week to week.

Image credit: http://www.australiantraveller.com/qld/fortitude-valley/
Image credit: http://www.australiantraveller.com/qld/fortitude-valley/

Also, the market has the added benefit of being on both Saturday or Sunday (9am – 4pm), which is great as you can still get to weekend sports, work and other weekend commitments.

What I also love is that you can get to the market very easily via public transport, with regular buses and trains stopping in the Valley precinct.

365 Places: Sandgate

Day 27: Sandgate, Queensland, Australia

Upper Esplanade and bay views, Sandgate, ca. 1907 Image Credit: pictureqld.slq.qld.gov.au/
Upper Esplanade and bay views, Sandgate, ca. 1907
Image Credit: pictureqld.slq.qld.gov.au/

If you happened to be standing at Woody Point on the Redcliffe Peninsula and looking back at Brisbane, chances are you would be looking at Sandgate.

Sandgate is a suburb of Briabane, located about 16 kilometres from the CBD. It is a popular place for Brisbanites to go for a Sunday drive, perhaps to enjoy some fish and chips in the park overlooking Moreton Bay. Its beach is not very popular with swimmers as there are a lot of mangroves and the sand is quite silty. Also, I have always been a bit frightened to swim there anyway, due to a story my mother told me about her childhood; that there were many sharks prowling the shallow calm waters of the bay.

What is beautiful about Sandgate and the surrounding suburbs, is that they feature some very fine examples of Queenslander houses, defined by their beautiful wide verandahs and timber work. This distinct style of architecture is becoming increasingly rare in Brisbane, as these lovely old gems have been either demolished or removed, to make way for apartment blocks.

The Queenslander calls to another time, a time where life was lived more elegantly, more relaxed and in synch with the long humid summer.

Source: The Sunday Mail (Qld)
Source: The Sunday Mail (Qld)

Art in Paradise

Images: Garry Benson
Text: Garry Benson

Brisvegas, Image Credit: Garry Benson
Brisvegas, Image Credit: Garry Benson

Last night I was privileged to attend a Members Only farewell showing of the most magnificent art I have ever seen at the Queensland Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art. The exhibition, Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth “shows major new works by a truly global artist, whose large-scale installations and explosion events have made him one of the most innovative figures in contemporary art.” (http://www.qagoma.qld.gov.au/exhibitions/current/cai_guo-qiang)

Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson
Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson

Queensland and Brisbane has not only come of age with its art scene, it’s pi**ing all over the rest of Australia with its Art, Museum and Library complex on the banks of the big, brown Brisbane River. I last visited the site for Expo 88 with my lovely friend Val and what a transformation. Thanks to my dear friends Janna and Peter for this brilliant evening!

Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson
Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson

Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson
Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson

Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson
Cai Guo-Qiang: Falling Back to Earth, Image Credit: Garry Benson

200 followers – thank you!!

Thank you to everyone who visits our site and likes and follows our posts. We really appreciate your support – it inspires us to continue to write and publish our travel stories.

Don’t forget – we welcome guest contributions (like the prolific Garry Benson), so if you have a great story please check out the submission guidelines and  contact us.

Thanks again – you are awesome!

This is us at our fave cafe in Istanbul , more later 🙂

Tracey and Marty in Istanbul
Tracey and Marty in Istanbul

Help us make 200 followers: it’s still the w’end in some parts of the globe:

Yesterday we hit 500 likes on our travel site www.geokult-travel.com .

We are really excited to share that we almost have 200 followers. We would love to make this milestone this weekend,  so if you haven’t already checked out the site, drop by and say hi. We would really appreciate it 🙂

We write articles and present photo essays on all sorts of topics related to travel, culture, food, adventure and sustainability.

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365 Places: Aspley

Day 9: Aspley, Queensland, Australia

Today’s post is about a place where I spent some of my formative years, a suburb in Brisbane, Aspley.

When I was a child, Aspley was considered the ‘gateway’ to the north – as it is located on both sides of the Gympie Road which turns into the Bruce Highway – or Highway 1. This is the road that takes you from Brisbane all the way to the Cairns and beyond.

As a child much of the land around me was rural or bush, making it an ideal place to play and explore, despite the highway being close by. We spent many hours down at Cabbage Tree creek, looking for guppies and frogs. When I went back to Brisbane as an adult, I was shocked and surprised to see how much this suburb had changed. This realisation led to the development of a performance work, titled Scalpland, which I reflected upon when I participated in the SCANZ2013 residency. My blog post Contemplating SCANZ2013 Themes – Revisiting Scalpland explored my connection to this place and its history.

As a kid I loved escaping to the bushland close by, and I remember getting in trouble for making a gunyah (cubby house) down in the bush behind the school. The picture below is of the school in the 1890s and you can see the magnificent trees in the background.

Aspley School, 1890. This photo was originally owned by Henry Cecil Carr, who is in this photo with his brother Albert Rupert Carr.
Aspley School, 1890. This photo was originally owned by Henry Cecil Carr, who is in this photo with his brother Albert Rupert Carr.

One of the very interesting things I found out was that Gympie Road and Albany Creek Road were Aboriginal tracks. The creek where I played as a child was a meeting place and crossroad for potentially tens of thousands of years. Mr Wikipedia states:

Soon after Brisbane was declared a free settlement in 1842, people began exploring the lands north of Brisbane City. A northern route followed aboriginal tracks through what is now Kelvin Grove, Enoggera, Everton Hills, Albany Creek onto North Pine. This route is still known as “‘Old Northern Road’” and “‘Old North Road’” in places.
Another aboriginal track branching eastward from the Old Northern Road at the South Pine River crossed towards Little Cabbage Tree Creek and continued towards Downfall Creek. This track is now known as “Albany Creek Road” and “Gympie Road”. Albany Creek Road was known as “Chinaman Creek Road” before 1888.

Here is a map of where the tracks used to be, the line in the centre is Maundrell Tce (my street) with my house highlighted.

Ancient Tracks
Ancient Tracks

When I go back to Brisbane, invariably we still drive through Aspley and it is a place rich of memories and daydreams of the past.

Resources

Chermside and District History http://www.chermsidedistrict.org.au/chermsidedistrict/01_cms/details.asp?ID=129 (accessed 28 April 2014)

Check out these websites for more information:
http://queenslandplaces.com.au/node/39

http://www.chermsidedistrict.org.au/chermsidedistrict/default.asp

Nudgee Waterholes

Post from Geokult

Geokult

Yesterday we went for a lovely wander around the Nudgee Waterholes, located on the northside of Brisbane, close to Nudgee Beach on Moreton Bay. We went with good friend, fellow walker and placemaker Linda Carroli. Aside from being an area rich in vegetation and bird life, it is well known historically as a significant food and gathering place for local Aboriginal people. Located at the waterholes is a Bora Ring, which was specifically a men’s meeting place.

It was evident that there has been a lot of rain, some of the paths were flooded, it was swarming with mosquitos and a number of the paper barks keeled over because the shallow tree roots were waterlogged.

When we had enough of having our blood sucked we headed over to a picnic area near Kedron Brook Floodway, a popular spot for recreational fishermen. Linda had brought along a bevy of yummy…

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The Nostalgia of the City

Post from Geokult

Geokult

We are in Brisbane this weekend to celebrate my parents golden wedding anniversary. 

It was a lovely occasion,  where my parents invited all the family and friends that attended their wedding in 1963. Obviously, I wasn’t there then , but I am a  product of the union between Kevin and Kay.

This morning I am feeling very nostalgic,  we are sitting in a booth seat at my favorite cafe in the valley,  Cosmos. I have so many happy memories of times spent here with friends,  dropping in after gallery openings, bringing my son here when he was little, sitting in the chapel style seats and watching the people go by.

image

I miss Brisbane,  it is so much a part of who I am.  Yet, I wonder what my life would be like if I returned.  Twelve years is a long time.

Today, I am content to lose myself in my…

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