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Travels in Indonesia, Uncategorized

Labuanbajo, Flores

Published in Bali Advertiser

Dawn is breaking over Labuanbajo, as we settle into the small outrigger which will take us to Rinca island, home of the legendary Komodo dragon. The early morning silence is shattered when the boat captain fires up the outboard motor, it’s a noisy beast  and conversation becomes impossible, but it doesn’t matter as the scenery unfolding before me  is so spectacular that I am rendered speechless. The boat cuts across the deep inky  blue water and weaves through  the jagged volcanic islands that make up Komodo National Park. It is dry season and the islands are parched and barren, some are little more than big piles of black lava rock. Others have strips of dazzling white sand and a smattering of palm trees, while the bigger islands have villages of stilt houses. Continue reading “Labuanbajo, Flores”

Global adventures

Meteora

There are few places in the world that evoke a sense of wonder like Greece. From ancient monuments to the mighty Gods, to the deep blue sparkle of the Aegean Sea.  To windswept islands where white washed houses hug the cliffs, to the  cosy tavernas that serve up homemade Ouzo and crusty white bread with Kalamata olives and pungent feta cheese. While the lure of basking in the sun on a rugged island has always been irresistible, I finally managed  to drag myself away from the beach and head to the mountains. A picture spotted on a postcard had drawn me to the fabled monolithic rocks of Meteora, where monks have long sought solace in the monasteries that perch like birds nests on top of them. Continue reading “Meteora”

Bali Life, Eco Bali, Restaurant reviews, Bali, Travels in Indonesia, Uncategorized, Yoga/Bali Spirit

The magic of raw chocolate

Chocolate truffles at Alchemy, photograph courtesy Suki Zoe

A few years ago my  friends had a ‘decadent dessert party’ and we all took along a dessert of our choice, not surprisingly there was a lot of chocolate – including my own triple chocolate cheesecake. What had started as a very chilled affair suddenly turned into a mad crazy night of dancing, Continue reading “The magic of raw chocolate”

Bali Life, Eco Bali, Travels in Indonesia, Yoga/Bali Spirit

Desa Seni Magic

At  Desa Seni  the path to well being is scattered with flowers…..

As my friend and resident Kundalini yoga teacher Daphna says, “It’s a place of peace and joy, from the moment you enter any stress evaporates…. it’s a happy place.” Continue reading “Desa Seni Magic”

Uncategorized

The enchantment of the Yasawas

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I was nervous and jittery as we began our descent into Nadi, it felt like I was going to meet a lover, my heart was beating fast and when we finally landed it took all my self control not to push past all the people in the aisle. At last I was down the stairs and on the tarmac taking big deep breaths of Fiji…. warm damp air tinged with just a hint of sugar cane.

I was determined to stay detached, after all I had only come back for a few weeks to look after my friends resort www.navutustarsfiji.com and to finish research on my book about my former life here.   I mean, what could happen in three and a half weeks…..?   The only thing is I have gone and fallen in love all over again…. Continue reading “The enchantment of the Yasawas”

Global adventures

Return to Blue Lagoon

Today I went back to Turtle Island….. its been five years since I left this island paradise, but as I walked down the dock it was like I never left at all. Just like the old days Richard was waiting for me in a cart to take me on a tour of his gardens – his pride and joy.

Richard Evanson is the most amazing and inspiring man I have ever met, and it was thanks to him and his vision of creating a community owned resort in the remote islands  that I first came to Fiji. Continue reading “Return to Blue Lagoon”

Bali Life, Eco Bali, Travels in Indonesia

Sarinbuana Eco Lodge

At One With Nature

“The beauty of the  Eco Lodge is  that it can be enjoyed on so many levels , hide away from the world in a secluded mountain paradise, or put yourself out there as you immerse yourself in the nature, culture and  community.” Continue reading “Sarinbuana Eco Lodge”

Global adventures, Uncategorized

Back to Fiji

Life is funny, one minute you are striding down a certain path, and the next, tragedy strikes  like a metaphorical avalanche and the path is swept away from under you. But all the cliches are true…. out of the darkness comes the light…..as one door closes another opens…… And so it was that a disaster on the harsh rocky island of Gran Canaria  in Spain seven years ago would change my life in ways I never could have imagined.

Fate, and the trade winds blew me to Fiji where I landed a job on a remote island in the Yasawas.  Here I worked with a local, tradition-bound community domineered by a powerful autocratic chief, and answered  to a wealthy and eccentric American billionaire (owner of the island where Blue Lagoon was filmed). It was a crazy time typified by cyclones, a  coup, and suffocating heat, of sabotage and skullduggery….where cheeky spirits roamed by land and sea, and tales of cannibalistic forebears were shared over many a bowl of kava.   But what i remember most is the laughter, the singing, the awe inspiring beauty and the big beautiful smiles of the Fijians who welcomed  me to their island home. Continue reading “Back to Fiji”

Travels in Indonesia, Uncategorized

24 hours in Jakarta

24 hours in Jakarta

Jakarta doesn’t enjoy the best of reputations ,but anyone who spends any amount of time in Indonesia is bound to pass through the sweltering capital at some point. I have 24 hours and am determined to find something endearing about the city which is home to ten million people. I arrive two weeks after the bombs, but apart from the area directly around the Marriot and the Ritz Carlton, life has continued as normal. Continue reading “24 hours in Jakarta”

Bali Life, Yoga/Bali Spirit

Daniel Aaron, Radiantly Alive

It is said that eyes are the windows of the soul, and the first thing I notice about Daniel Aaron are sparkling blue eyes that radiate calmness, compassion and knowingness. As the creator of Radiantly Alive, he aims to uplift our world through unique and powerfully transformative yoga experiences. But if you are picturing a white robed, long haired guru in sandalwood beads speaking in mantras, think again.  Daniel is very much a modern day yogi  (he prefers “human potential guide”) who also happens to make awesome raw chocolate, delves in astrology, runs yoga teacher training programs, and facilitates raw food chef courses. Continue reading “Daniel Aaron, Radiantly Alive”