Aiguille du Midi

Aiguille du Midi (3,842 m), Mont Blanc

One day trip from Geneva, Switzerland, to Chamonix in France. Chamonix is one of the oldest ski resorts in France and the site where the first Winter Olympics took place in 1924.

One of the main attractions is the spectacular cable car trip from Chamonix to Aiguille du Midi 3,842 m (12,605 ft) – the highest vertical ascent cable car in the world. There is a change of cabin at 2,317 m.  From here, the ascent is steep and directly, without any support pillar for a length of 2,867 m. (data from Wikipedia).

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Railay

Railay Beach is a small peninsula in the Andaman Sea accessible only by boat from Ao Nang. With stunning limestone cliffs, Railway is one of the most famous destinations for rock climbing in Thailand. Covered by jungle, with beautiful beaches and a laid-back atmosphere – Railway attracts a younger and adventurous crowd. It even has a Rastafarian vibe!

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Little Italy Good Friday Procession

Good Friday is a Christian holiday commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. In Toronto the commemoration takes place in Little Italy. The Good Friday procession is a reenacting of the 14 stations of the cross, symbolizing the path Jesus walked before the moment of his crucifixion.

The preparations for the procession take place at the Church of St. Francis of Assisi. Hundreds of people line the streets of Little Italy to watch the procession where parishioners are dressed as Jesus, Roman soldiers and disciples – carrying statues and banners telling the story of Jesus’ crucifixion.

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Bamboo Island

From Koh Phi Phi to Bamboo Island

A short ride by long-tail boat from Koh Phi Phi, the tropical Bamboo Island will welcome you with both, deserted beaches and touristy ones, rocky and white sand beaches – all surrounded by the crystal clear waters of the Andaman Sea and coral reefs. Covered by Bamboo and Casuarinas trees, the island is pretty small: 600 m wide by 700 m long.

Perfect for snorkeling or bathing with the fishes, including “Nemo” – the clownfish movie star from Disney, parrot fish and small sharks.

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Koh Phi Phi Island

Krabi, the Andaman Sea. Stunning scenery. Limestone cliffs dotting the turquoise seas and hundred of islands with beautiful white-sand beaches.

One of the most popular destination in Krabi is Koh Phi Phi Island – a “hedonistic paradise” (Lonely Planet) or “Thailand’s most dangerous island”(Nomadic Matt).

Actually Koh Phi Phi is a group of islands, with Maya Bay being the most famous – the place of the movie “The Beach” starring Leonardo di Caprio. Now Maya Bay is closed for tourists to allow the ecosystem to recover from overtourism.

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Addis Ababa

Selam (Hello) Addis!

Dream of Africa – the faraway lands, the excitement of discovery, the awakening of the senses, the adventures. Africa may not be on your top destinations you want to visit. Too expensive or too dangerous, we are always finding excuses not to go there. But sometime, chance or romance will lead us to places we never dreamed about.

For me, chance was Libya and Tunisia in North Africa. And romance was Gambia and Senegal in West Africa.

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Merkato, Addis Ababa

Merkato is Africa’s biggest market

A chaotic place at first sight, Merkato Addis Ababa in Ethiopia is the biggest open air market in Africa employing 13,000 people. The market is organized in sections for spices, coffee, metal scraping, recycling, textiles, second-hand clothes, pots, baskets and many more – dotted with tailors and shoe-shiners.

There is a constant flow of people, cars, trucks and donkeys, carrying merchandise on narrow alleys. It is quite overwhelming. Heavy weights, such as a stack of three or four mattresses, are carried on the head by merchants while keeping the balance and navigating through the busy alleys.

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Christmas on Four Continents

“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.” – Norman Vincent Peale

It is the time for Christmas – a time for joy, celebration and reflection, a time to look back to the year that has passed and prepare for the year ahead.

Looking back many years, the Christmas caught me in some unusual places such as in the airplane flying from Toronto to Bucharest, in a deserted lounge of the Lagos airport, near the bridge over the river Kwai in Thailand, on the top of Carpathian Mountains or at a cabaret show in Havana.

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