Happy Hampi

They call it Happy Hampi and I could definitely see why. It was a laidback village amidst a bizarre landscape of giant boulders and ancient temples. It reminded me a lot of Petra in Jordan where you weren’t really restricted as to where you could go and you could scramble up boulders and hills to…

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Primary health care in rural India

India was always on my bucket list but what drew me here this particular time was the Comprehensive Rural Health Program (CRHP) in Jamkhed, Maharashtra. The University of Melbourne offers a public health subject based at the CRHP campus and I opted to do it as part of my Development Studies program. The first time…

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Kerala: God’s own country

When tourists think of southern India they think of Kerala and it’s famous backwaters, palm trees, beaches and laidback attitude. It’s the place where you can forget for a while that you are in a country with over one billion people; it’s quieter and more relaxed than other places on the subcontinent. I spent a…

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My Gateway to India

Flying into Mumbai, it looked like any other city with tall sky scrapers all along the coast. I could see a thick blanket of smog hovering over the buildings, but I had expected that. I jumped into a pre-paid taxi and took off for the 25km to my hostel in the Fort area of the…

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Keeping my promise to Maasai land

A year ago I volunteered in a small village in Maasailand, Kenya. I promised to go back and exactly a year later I did. I had been motivated to do something to help the school I’d volunteered at and so did my family back home upon hearing my stories and seeing my pictures. So, whilst…

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The “mountain that eats men”

Colonialism has left a bad mark on many countries in the world and Bolivia is no exception. It was subjected to harsh Spanish rule, like most of the continent, from 1545 until 1825. Bolivia became Spain’s most valuable possession in South America as silver was discovered in the Cerro Rico (rich hill) in Potosi. They…

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Our Lady of Peace aka La Paz

Bogota, Quito, Lima, La Paz; these big South American cities are usually seen from the taxi to and from the airport. Most travellers spend little time in them generally because of high crime rates, chaotic traffic and dirty streets, and I too only spent a couple of days in each until I landed in Nuestra…

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Hiking the Quilotoa Loop

“Tricky but rewarding” were the words Lonely Planet used. I was determined to do it independently anyway. I found a lot of useful information on some other blog posts people had written plus the few hostels at each of the villages around the loop also had informative websites. The ‘loop’ is actually a rough road…

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Visit Palestine

Visit Palestine is a popular souvenir poster that you can buy everywhere in the Old City of Jerusalem but it’s not really something considered seriously by most tourists. The Israeli-Palestinian issue has been such an ongoing conflict that a lot of people don’t really take a second to look beyond the images they see on…

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Africa’s quiet achiever

Bumpy, pot hole-filled roads? Check. Old, rattling minibus taxis? Check. Daily sighting of road accidents? Check. Unreliable, slow internet? Check. Thunderstorms and rain every night? Check. Welcome to Botswana! The second I crossed the border from Johannesburg to Gaborone I knew I was in a very different place. This is the Africa I came to…

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