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    Favourite Destinations

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    ruby

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    Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:07 am

    With all this wonderful weather, its got me thinking about summer. I have also been reflecting on my favourite holiday of all time, South Africa's Kruger Park was wonderful, so was Dominican Republic in wintertime a few years ago, we flew down to a small island where the sand was like talcum powder and the sea was an aqua crystal clear blue, such a contrast to our grey January days sunny

    But my all time favourite holiday was Florida and my grandchildren adored it. I absolutely loved Orlando and managed to visit most of the parks, they were magical, my favourite Disney park was Magic Kingdom, and then Orlando Universal Studios especially the ET and Jaws rides. Then we all spent a day at Discovery Cove and swam with the dolphins, that day was absolutely perfect from the moment we arrived, breakfast and lunch was all inclusive and swimming with these beautiful creatures was out of this world. Here is a photo (a Yahoo one) of the dolphins at Discovery Cove.


    There was also a huge pool with a beach like surrounding where sting rays and tropical fish swam and we were able to enter the pool and snorkel whilst these giant sting rays gracefully swam past not at all bothered by their audience. I asked one of the guides about the danger of the sting rays as most people will recall Steve Irwin tragically died after a sting ray pierce his heart, but the guide said that all the sting rays had had their barbs trimmed, rather like having your nails cut so not painful to the fish.

    I remember getting off the plane and a couple in front of me saying 'holidays are all about storing memories' and I never forgot that remark as its very true. All our lives are stored memories.

    Anyone else got a favourite destination that they will never forget?

    Ruby

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Admin on Sat Mar 03, 2012 6:14 pm

    Hi Ruby,

    Oh that is SO true - holidays really are treasured memories!

    I loved Florida, too. We went there when my daughter was young (can't wait to go again with my two other treasures! tongue ) and we had a fabulous time. Weather was fantastic, of course, and we first flew into Miami and stayed there a couple of days - I loved it there.

    We then flew up to Tampa (or was it Orlando? Suspect ) I know we definitely went to Tampa - I'm sure we did! Anyway, whilst we were in Orlando we used to get up quite early and go down for breakfast - great breakfasts! Sunny-side-up eggs, bacon etc and then get into the hire car and drive down to one of the parks by about 10 o'clock. I remember we always walked anti-clockwise to beat the queues - and it really seemed to work.

    We did the Magic Kingdom, MGM, Universal, Seaworld, Epcot - and the Epcot was my favourite. I have to say the Yanks certainly know how to put on a show! We never left the parks until about 9pm after the firework display and the grand parade in Magic Kingdom - although we left the water one earlier. It's funny, but despite all that walking around all day we never got tired. There's just so much to do that you don't notice how much walking you do, I suppose. I remember the car park was HUGE, and every single car was white - just like ours! We never lost it though.....

    Soon as we got back to the hotel all that walking caught up with us, and except for a few nights where we went out to eat in the hotel we'd order room service and had the most lovely foot-long hot-dogs that seemed to be barbecued. They were sooooo delicious!

    I know they've got Disney in France, and I have been thinking of taking the grandchildren there, but my daughter thinks Florida will be better - you really do need that weather to enjoy it properly.

    We also went down to Longboat Key and spent about 10 days there - that was gorgeous! Soft white talcum powder sand, and sunsets to die for! We stayed in the Hilton there and it had one of the most comfortable beds I've ever slept on - I still remember that! I loved Longboat Key (Cher has a house on that beach, supposedly) and you can see the attraction - it's a beautiful area with some wonderful shops and seafood restaurants. I bought a wonderful handmade lamp with the most pretty seashells inside a glass stem (it was MASSIVE) but they do ship items over for you - they're really unusual lamps. Sound slightly tacky but they're not at all - they look very arty and good quality. We also drove to Naples in Florida, and that was beautiful too.

    We didn't swim with the dolphins out there, but I know lots of children do - and it's supposed to really help them if they're unwell or disabled. I love dolphins - they have such smiley faces (I wonder if they ever get moody? You'd never know would you? lol) and I think provided they're well-looked after, and have masses of seawater to swim in so they feel unrestricted, I don't see a problem with it. Of course, that weird nutter in Hisaronu who put a dolphin in a SWIMMING POOL was totally berserk - but that's a different thing altogether.....the dolphins in Florida etc are kept under strict government rules to ensure their health and wellbeing. I believe they also have access to the open sea - maybe they have nets or something half a mile or so out to shore. Similar to the nets in Australia that keep the sharks out!


    Slightly off-topic again!

    My favourite destination.......phew, that's a hard one! I've so many favourite places - and they're all special and beautiful in different ways. I've done most of Europe (including England and Ireland) France, Amsterdam, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Yugoslavia, Athens, lots of Greek islands, Morocco, North and South Cyprus, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Thailand, Malaysia, Australia, America, Caribbean - but I've never done Africa (unless you count Morocco) and I've not done the Maldives or India. There's LOADS of places I want to go to - Maldives, Seychelles, Bahamas, Great Barrier Reef, Virgin Islands, Hawaii (not the main island, though), and South Africa sounds beautiful too. A safari would be nice!

    I'd also like to do a train journey through Europe - I bet that could be very romantic on the right train.

    But so far I'd say my favourite destinations have been Austria, Italy and Australia. But then again there's parts of Greece I adore - Kephalonia is beautiful - as is France. And Italy.

    It's so difficult to choose jut one destination. Turkey has some beautiful parts - I think Oludeniz is pretty (especially the hidden bays where no tourists go) and Patara, Kalkan and Kas are lovely. Although Kas has no beach in the centre, and as lovely as it is it isn't the sort of place I'd want to live. There's too little to do.

    Strawbs
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    hoppit

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  hoppit on Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:01 am

    Sweden
    Denmark
    Scilly isles
    Panama
    Japan

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Admin on Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:49 pm

    Hi Hoppit,

    Panama is supposed to be very beautiful, and that's where the canoe man and his wife escaped to when he faked his own death! I'm just wondering what made you choose Panama of all places?

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    Maria

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Maria on Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:38 pm

    Is that where panama hats come from? king

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    hyatum

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  hyatum on Wed Mar 14, 2012 9:16 pm

    Tanzania for the most amazing wildlife safaris and authentic culture and photographic opportunities
    Zanzibar for the beaches,
    Mozambique for the diving (beats Mexico and Australia hands-down),
    Argentina for the sizzling dancing!!! and gorgeous men,
    California for the best seafood chowders and most vibey docklands,
    Montana for the most awesome rolling mountainous and horse riding areas, Texas for the friendly people,
    New Hampshire for the quaintness,
    New Orleans (Louisiana) for the Best Jazz, Crabs and Festivals,
    Hong Kong for the most amazing night time Laser shows and shopping
    Canada and Namibia ....a landscape photographers dream.....never-ending landscapes
    But my favourite holidays.....phew.....still got to be Turkey and South Africa!!!! flower

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Admin on Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:49 pm

    Wow, Nicks!

    You've sold ALL those places to me! They all sound so fantastic and interesting too - right up my street, in fact! You've really travelled haven't you?! I love hearing about people's adventures abroad, especially when they've been to countries many people never get the chance to go to - or never get round to going to.


    I really ought to start looking at Africa, but I wouldn't know where to start....I've heard Cape Town is beautiful, so that's a big poss for the near future. The nearest I've been to Hong Kong is Singapore - but that's not Hong Kong is it! Exclamation I did love Singapore, though, and one night we dined in a revolving retaurant at the top of the hotel we were staying at, and we could see three different countries from where we were sat - but I've forgotten which ones they were now! Mooooons ago.... I remember the shopping was FANTASTIC there, and I have a lovely Jade ring and bracelet set in white gold that I got from there, which brings back many happy memories when I occasionally wear them......I also had a Suzie Wong blue silk dress made for me (in about one day! lol) which I've only worn about twice! Impulse buy - but couldn't resist. And it really is beautiful silk - really heavy and thick; cool in the summer and warm when it's chilly. I'm not sure where I could wear it, though Suspect

    So did you go to Hong Kong recently or when it was still under British rule? I know a lot of people rushed to go there before the changeover, though I doubt much has really changed since, but I could be wrong of course (even though I'm an undercover Moderator and actually know EVERYTHING hehe)......

    Going onto Argentina I think the Argentinian Tango is one of THE sexiest dances there is! You definitely need good rhythm and shapely legs to do that sexy little back-kick they do! tongue I don't know why I've never thought of going to Argentina, actually (they do great beef, too!) I could devour a nice juicy steak while watching a sexy, gorgeous Argentian man, in tight black trousers doing the Tango - just for me! We are going to Cuba this year, which again, isn't Argentina Exclamation But I really want to see Havana - it's supposed to be absolutely fascinating. And the second part of our holiday we're spending on a beach which is supposed to be all soft white talcum type sand (Sting goes there, apparently) so if it's good enough for him it's good enough for us sunny

    But looking at your list I want to go to all those places too! tongue New Orleans - yes siree! I love jazz - I also love crab and chowder - I adore seafood...so healthy, so tasty and not at all fattening!

    So which parts of Turkey have you been to, Nicks? I bet you haven't done Marm, Icmeler or Stinky Tinky! tongue They wouldn't be your cup of cay at all!

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    ruby

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:29 pm

    Strawbs wrote:-
    '(even though I'm an undercover Moderator and actually know EVERYTHING hehe)......'

    You mean YOU Strawberry can ban people ffs Evil or Very Mad

    Marms and Icmeler are beautiful places, the only thing that gives them a bad name are the tacky fat trollops, elderly UK women who go around shagging everything that moves and slimeball Turds scratching their STD balls due to ingrowing hairs on their shaven groins who are read to oblige, for a price, these very needy unbalanced thicko women. Oh and ex pats bragging about who owns the best house, car, has the most money, can drink 20 Efes a day or more.

    Cannot comment on Stinky Tinky as never been there, but I do read another site and there is a guy on there who is an arrogant twat, ex pat piss head.

    Ruby

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Admin on Thu Mar 15, 2012 11:45 pm

    Hi Ruby,

    Stinky Tinky is where the wet stout shapeless midget went for her moneymoon honeymoon with the Frock, after their cheap midweek wedding (the one with the Tesco value-type wedding cake Rachel made, and in which Sirin wore a cheap dress she bid on from eBay - looked like it was made from curtain material and a lampshade tassle - bet Mr Bouffant had his eyes on THAT! queen ) There's dead rats occasionally on the beach, litter everywhere, graffiti, crumbling ugly buildings, rusty wire fencing, all plopped on a flat ugly landscape. It's a bit like Hell. When we visited there we left in rather a hurry!

    The worst place in turkey I'd say, but there may be worse which I've just never been to! affraid

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Richard on Fri Mar 16, 2012 12:00 am

    Hi guys, I'm guessing some of you know that I'm a big fan of Fethiye and I'm booked to go out there in May, I'm a sucker for punishment haha! My ex is living out there and we're bound to meet up but getting back together is just not on the cards, she's adament. But we must soldier on and it's my biggy birthday this year so I want to find someone soon to share the good times with me.

    I have tried some dating sites but so far not much has arisen from my dates. I'm told I'm not a bad looking guy and I keep myself as fit as I can, I need to brush up on my romantic skills may be? Times like this I could use those Turkish charms those men all seem to have haha

    Well guys, if you have any tips for me do spill the beans.

    Richard
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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Fri Mar 16, 2012 3:40 am

    Admin wrote:Hi Ruby,

    Stinky Tinky is where the wet stout shapeless midget went for her moneymoon honeymoon with the Frock, after their cheap midweek wedding (the one with the Tesco value-type wedding cake Rachel made, and in which Sirin wore a cheap dress she bid on from eBay - looked like it was made from curtain material and a lampshade tassle - bet Mr Bouffant had his eyes on THAT! queen ) There's dead rats occasionally on the beach, litter everywhere, graffiti, crumbling ugly buildings, rusty wire fencing, all plopped on a flat ugly landscape. It's a bit like Hell. When we visited there we left in rather a hurry!

    The worst place in turkey I'd say, but there may be worse which I've just never been to! affraid

    Strawbs

    Hi Strabws

    You talking about Rachel from EGOT? I remember when she bought knickers off Ebay, think she said they were for her daughter, Jeez, who in their right mind would buy knickers from Ebay? Then again, I know there are sickos who will buy all sorts of kinky stuff from Ebay, even Ann Summers whips. tongue My guess is that Mr Bouffant has worn 'the dress' but not in front of Mrs Bouffant cyclops

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:02 am

    Richard wrote:Hi guys, I'm guessing some of you know that I'm a big fan of Fethiye and I'm booked to go out there in May, I'm a sucker for punishment haha! My ex is living out there and we're bound to meet up but getting back together is just not on the cards, she's adament. But we must soldier on and it's my biggy birthday this year so I want to find someone soon to share the good times with me.

    I have tried some dating sites but so far not much has arisen from my dates. I'm told I'm not a bad looking guy and I keep myself as fit as I can, I need to brush up on my romantic skills may be? Times like this I could use those Turkish charms those men all seem to have haha

    Well guys, if you have any tips for me do spill the beans.

    Richard

    Hi Richard

    I remember you posting last year about Fethiye but when I asked you about your visit you appeared evasive, bit like a Tax Return Very Happy

    The thought of even bumping into my ex in Asda turns my stomach, never mind visiting him on my jolly. If you are for real then you had better wise up, she's just not that into you, as you say 'but getting back together is just not on the cards, she's adament', so why bother? She is more than likely shacked up with a Turd now anyway cyclops

    Dating sites are a magnet for all sorts of folk, I've had a couple of dates who turned out to be complete nutters. I can advise how to get rid of people, for example, one desperate bloke who I wanted rid of, I told him that I couldnt possibly ever have sex with him unless I was married due to my religion. He asked me what my religion is, and I told him 'have you ever seen the Sound of Music?', he replied 'yes', so I said 'well I am a distant relative of Maria Von Trapp and I belong to an order of nuns'. Strange, I never heard from him again. lol! My trouble is Richard, the men I date always seem to have something 'arisen' Razz

    When next in Turkey just listen to the locals, its really easy for them to put on the charm, its like second nature, 'oh my God where have you been all my life, you are my angel, your eyes are so beautiful' and they could be looking at someone resembling Heather Trott from Eastenders affraid (even she pulled a Moroccan).

    Good luck Richard in your search for happiness and hope you have a great holiday. Strawbs is the expert, but she is in my bad books at the moment and I think she has retreated into hiding Laughing

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Turkishheartdrop on Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:58 pm

    Admin wrote:Hi Ruby,

    Stinky Tinky is where the wet stout shapeless midget went for her moneymoon honeymoon with the Frock, after their cheap midweek wedding (the one with the Tesco value-type wedding cake Rachel made, and in which Sirin wore a cheap dress she bid on from eBay - looked like it was made from curtain material and a lampshade tassle - bet Mr Bouffant had his eyes on THAT! queen ) There's dead rats occasionally on the beach, litter everywhere, graffiti, crumbling ugly buildings, rusty wire fencing, all plopped on a flat ugly landscape. It's a bit like Hell. When we visited there we left in rather a hurry!

    The worst place in turkey I'd say, but there may be worse which I've just never been to! affraid

    Strawbs



    Coffee over the keyboard moment..........lampshade tassle...........pmsl..................
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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  hyatum on Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:52 pm

    Admin wrote:Wow, Nicks!

    You've sold ALL those places to me! They all sound so fantastic and interesting too - right up my street, in fact! You've really travelled haven't you?! I love hearing about people's adventures abroad, especially when they've been to countries many people never get the chance to go to - or never get round to going to.


    I really ought to start looking at Africa, but I wouldn't know where to start....I've heard Cape Town is beautiful, so that's a big poss for the near future. The nearest I've been to Hong Kong is Singapore - but that's not Hong Kong is it! Exclamation I did love Singapore, though, and one night we dined in a revolving retaurant at the top of the hotel we were staying at, and we could see three different countries from where we were sat - but I've forgotten which ones they were now! Mooooons ago.... I remember the shopping was FANTASTIC there, and I have a lovely Jade ring and bracelet set in white gold that I got from there, which brings back many happy memories when I occasionally wear them......I also had a Suzie Wong blue silk dress made for me (in about one day! lol) which I've only worn about twice! Impulse buy - but couldn't resist. And it really is beautiful silk - really heavy and thick; cool in the summer and warm when it's chilly. I'm not sure where I could wear it, though Suspect

    So did you go to Hong Kong recently or when it was still under British rule? I know a lot of people rushed to go there before the changeover, though I doubt much has really changed since, but I could be wrong of course (even though I'm an undercover Moderator and actually know EVERYTHING hehe)......

    Going onto Argentina I think the Argentinian Tango is one of THE sexiest dances there is! You definitely need good rhythm and shapely legs to do that sexy little back-kick they do! tongue I don't know why I've never thought of going to Argentina, actually (they do great beef, too!) I could devour a nice juicy steak while watching a sexy, gorgeous Argentian man, in tight black trousers doing the Tango - just for me! We are going to Cuba this year, which again, isn't Argentina Exclamation But I really want to see Havana - it's supposed to be absolutely fascinating. And the second part of our holiday we're spending on a beach which is supposed to be all soft white talcum type sand (Sting goes there, apparently) so if it's good enough for him it's good enough for us sunny

    But looking at your list I want to go to all those places too! tongue New Orleans - yes siree! I love jazz - I also love crab and chowder - I adore seafood...so healthy, so tasty and not at all fattening!

    So which parts of Turkey have you been to, Nicks? I bet you haven't done Marm, Icmeler or Stinky Tinky! tongue They wouldn't be your cup of cay at all!

    Strawbs

    Hi Strawbs,

    Ha , ha, lol! you got it right Marm, Icmeler ....I don't what Stinky Tinky is, but it sounds pretty crappy. I just do'nt like resorts but its all a matter or personal taste....I have been to resorts in Mauritius, and Seychelles and Mexico but there it seemed different but I just dont really like them and would not do it again. I did'nt go to Turkey for the beaches, because we have such beautiful uncrowded, unpolluted beaches here in Africa, although I would love to go to Izmir and just park off like a local. I just have insatiable cuiousity and love to walk the streets with my camera. I really went because I am an artist and wanted to see the beautiful ceramic work, the carpets, the ancient art, the old buildings and for the photographic and filming opportunities. The first time I went, I travelled down to Antalya and travelled east and west of there, along the coast, I did not enjoy it that much, I was more interested in the old culture. Anyway lol! I have travelled from Istanbul via Ankara and Konya east ....and went all over the areas of Kayseri, Askaray, Kirsehir, Nigde, Nevsehir, Malatya, Elezig, Mustafapasha....my favourite little town was right up in the mountains some right tough people come from there it's called Puturge!! I attended a traditional wedding there. It was absolutely amazing, I felt it was a bit to inturisive to film, but I was the official photogrpaher so I have the most awesome pics!! I was even invited to help the bride dress on her wedding day!. I also loved the mopuntainous area around Mount Nemrut and the little villages, beautiful photographic opportunities. Ok I digress, I have been all over the larger area of Istanbul, many many times, there is so much to see......the museums, the art galleries, the ancient art, I love walking through the Armenian area and looking at the old churches. So compared with you girls I really have not 'done' much of Turkey...and I have never even met other expats!!! geek I have a bizarre curiousity about Batman and Kars....I probably read too many books. Has anyone read 'Birds without Winds', it's absolutely beautiful.

    Strawbs, I went to Hong Kong about 2 years ago, nothing much has changed, there are thousands of ex-pats (young SA's) living there and I was taken all over the place by some friends, it is so much nicer than I thought, people are so polite and you can buy photographic equipment for such a good price. I never realized that the mainland would have such lovely wooded areas (old china) and the beaches on the island are really gorgeous. I went from there to Thailand.......Bangkok is so revolting and whilst the Thai people are so kind and sweet, they treat animals and their whole fellow human beings like shite, so it really coloured my visit. I hate to see animals and children being treated with contempt.

    You really should come to Africa, Botswana is quite quite amazing, but they are really ripping their visitors now. You can do anything in SA....beautiful game reserves, CT is magninficent, am going there in a weeks time, our neighbour Mozambique has the most beautiful beaches in the world and world-class diving and snorkelling at rock bottom prices.


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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Fanny on Sun Mar 18, 2012 12:44 am

    Reading these travel experiences has given me such itchy feet I'm almost salivating at the description of these gorgeous destinations. Venice Mexico Thailand Botswana Hong Kong Seychelles, so much to see and do I don't know where to start first. I love this thread it's so interesting and gives such a good insight into all these places. Please keep them coming I could read them all day. I'll be doing some surfing after dinner trying to work out some kind of itinery for later this year, it's just deciding on where to go to first. Money permitting I think I'll go as far away as possible first
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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:36 am

    Fanny wrote:Reading these travel experiences has given me such itchy feet I'm almost salivating at the description of these gorgeous destinations. Venice Mexico Thailand Botswana Hong Kong Seychelles, so much to see and do I don't know where to start first. I love this thread it's so interesting and gives such a good insight into all these places. Please keep them coming I could read them all day. I'll be doing some surfing after dinner trying to work out some kind of itinery for later this year, it's just deciding on where to go to first. Money permitting I think I'll go as far away as possible first

    Jeez Fanny, I really wish you would change your addy, with all this talk of knickers and stinky minky, the name Fanny is just too much to cope with tongue

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  hyatum on Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:52 pm

    ruby wrote:
    Fanny wrote:Reading these travel experiences has given me such itchy feet I'm almost salivating at the description of these gorgeous destinations. Venice Mexico Thailand Botswana Hong Kong Seychelles, so much to see and do I don't know where to start first. I love this thread it's so interesting and gives such a good insight into all these places. Please keep them coming I could read them all day. I'll be doing some surfing after dinner trying to work out some kind of itinery for later this year, it's just deciding on where to go to first. Money permitting I think I'll go as far away as possible first

    Jeez Fanny, I really wish you would change your addy, with all this talk of knickers and stinky minky, the name Fanny is just too much to cope with tongue

    Ruby

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  hyatum on Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:09 pm

    Richard wrote:Hi guys, I'm guessing some of you know that I'm a big fan of Fethiye and I'm booked to go out there in May, I'm a sucker for punishment haha! My ex is living out there and we're bound to meet up but getting back together is just not on the cards, she's adament. But we must soldier on and it's my biggy birthday this year so I want to find someone soon to share the good times with me.

    I have tried some dating sites but so far not much has arisen from my dates. I'm told I'm not a bad looking guy and I keep myself as fit as I can, I need to brush up on my romantic skills may be? Times like this I could use those Turkish charms those men all seem to have haha

    Well guys, if you have any tips for me do spill the beans.

    Richard

    Hi Richard

    A bit off the subject......I know you are into your photography! What camera do you have? and which lenses do you use for landscape and portraits? Do you shoot all your images in raw? and what editing software are you using right now......have you used the Watermark tool in PS5? just wanted some tips about watermarking.

    thanks

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Turkishheartdrop on Mon Mar 19, 2012 7:46 pm

    I reckon he uses a polaroid.....LOL......
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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Tue Mar 20, 2012 7:26 pm

    I reacon its a V.tech kiddies camera. Why doesnt he ever reply to questions Question Maybe 'he' is a 'she', there are plenty of them knocking around Shocked

    Come on Richard aka David Bailey, you love to purv over Strawb's photos, so at least answer Nick's questions. Twisted Evil

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Admin on Thu Mar 22, 2012 5:50 am

    hyatum wrote:
    Admin wrote:Wow, Nicks!



    Hi Strawbs,

    Ha , ha, lol! you got it right Marm, Icmeler ....I don't what Stinky Tinky is, but it sounds pretty crappy. I just do'nt like resorts but its all a matter or personal taste....I have been to resorts in Mauritius, and Seychelles and Mexico but there it seemed different but I just dont really like them and would not do it again. I did'nt go to Turkey for the beaches, because we have such beautiful uncrowded, unpolluted beaches here in Africa, although I would love to go to Izmir and just park off like a local. I just have insatiable cuiousity and love to walk the streets with my camera. I really went because I am an artist and wanted to see the beautiful ceramic work, the carpets, the ancient art, the old buildings and for the photographic and filming opportunities. The first time I went, I travelled down to Antalya and travelled east and west of there, along the coast, I did not enjoy it that much, I was more interested in the old culture. Anyway lol! I have travelled from Istanbul via Ankara and Konya east ....and went all over the areas of Kayseri, Askaray, Kirsehir, Nigde, Nevsehir, Malatya, Elezig, Mustafapasha....my favourite little town was right up in the mountains some right tough people come from there it's called Puturge!! I attended a traditional wedding there. It was absolutely amazing, I felt it was a bit to inturisive to film, but I was the official photogrpaher so I have the most awesome pics!! I was even invited to help the bride dress on her wedding day!. I also loved the mopuntainous area around Mount Nemrut and the little villages, beautiful photographic opportunities. Ok I digress, I have been all over the larger area of Istanbul, many many times, there is so much to see......the museums, the art galleries, the ancient art, I love walking through the Armenian area and looking at the old churches. So compared with you girls I really have not 'done' much of Turkey...and I have never even met other expats!!! geek I have a bizarre curiousity about Batman and Kars....I probably read too many books. Has anyone read 'Birds without Winds', it's absolutely beautiful.

    Strawbs, I went to Hong Kong about 2 years ago, nothing much has changed, there are thousands of ex-pats (young SA's) living there and I was taken all over the place by some friends, it is so much nicer than I thought, people are so polite and you can buy photographic equipment for such a good price. I never realized that the mainland would have such lovely wooded areas (old china) and the beaches on the island are really gorgeous. I went from there to Thailand.......Bangkok is so revolting and whilst the Thai people are so kind and sweet, they treat animals and their whole fellow human beings like shite, so it really coloured my visit. I hate to see animals and children being treated with contempt.

    You really should come to Africa, Botswana is quite quite amazing, but they are really ripping their visitors now. You can do anything in SA....beautiful game reserves, CT is magninficent, am going there in a weeks time, our neighbour Mozambique has the most beautiful beaches in the world and world-class diving and snorkelling at rock bottom prices.


    Nicks




    Hi Nicks,

    To give you an idea of what Stinky Tinky is like here's a link tto some photo's of the beach out there:

    http://www.tripadvisor.com/ReviewPhotos-g1467692-r84685235-Altinkum_Turkish_Aegean_Coast.html#last

    I'm sure they clean it up every so often before the tourists arrive, but I think you'll get the general picture...

    I personally don't even think it feels like Turkey, and the scenery is so sparse, flat and boring - sprinkled with shedloads of ugly box-shape houses and apartments all crumbling to bits with barbed wire on some brick walls , bars on windows, and peeling paint everywhere. Oh, and dirty mustard yellow seems to be THE colour! That or grey.

    Mr Strawberry and all his family and friends used to spend Sunday (Turks' day of leisure) driving up to either Kusadasi or down to Bodrum (a bit further down - or up?) rather tn going into Altinkum to swim and picnic. In fact, I think the whole of the population of Soke used to go anywhere other than Tinky, and that was even before tourism hit!

    It does have the Apollo Temple there (thousands of years old now) which is basically a pile of old stones now, really, and despite what I said about the beach it is quite big, and it is sandy. As long as you don't mind sharing it with the above mentioned...


    Some of the resorts I've been to in Turkey are nice, and I have a few special places that are off the beaten track which are really stunning and beautiful. But as you say, the beaches in Turkey are not that great in general. I did enjoy our drives between Antalya and Kalkan - I thought the views were spectacular - but some of the roads were extremely scary!

    I did all the usual touristy things in Istanbul - Hagia Sophia etc - but I probably didn't spend enough time there to really appreciate it. I know some people love Istanbul, and if Mr S and I had an apartment out there we'd probably fly over every month or so to spend a weekend there. I know lots of people do that, especially as flights to Istanbul are so cheap, and it makes a nice break. But as much as I like some parts of Turkey, Istanbul probably isn't one of them, and there's so many cities in the world to see....

    I think Hong Kong sounds very like Singapore! When I was there everyone was SO polite, and the electrical and photographic equipment was very cheap, too. I agree with you about Bangkok - it's an awful place! Hot, humid and stinks! The people are sooo polite, though - it makes you feel sorry for them in a way. Many of them live in such dreadful conditions (I saw families living in tin huts) and there's such a HUGE contrast between the rich and poor. Did you go to Pat Pong? haha What a name, eh? We were on a tuk-tuk one night and he was going like the clappers showing us around (it was hilarious,actually!) when he shouted out "I take you Pat Pong!" Hmmm....say no more! It's like Boogie Street in Singapore - all the tuk-tuks want to take you there! Corrupt government if you ask me!

    I remember going down one of the markets in Bangkok and I swear it was built on an open sewer! What a Face The stench was horrendous. I couldn't wait to leave Bangkok, and we were staying in a beautiful hotel, but I still felt stifled. I remember laying on the bed in the room we were staying in (about floor 50 or something ridiculous) when I felt a kind of swaying and saw the ceiling light swaying side to side. I think it was just natural movement of the building, but it felt VERY unnerving!

    Oh, and yes, the birds they keep trapped in cages, and then pester you to pay to release one for 'good luck' - disgusting. And someone told me they get the birds back somehow! I saw a snake charmer out there with a great big snake wrapped around his neck (eeeeeek!!!!!) and he was urging me to go over to him - I am TERRIFIED of snakes - and cannot even bear to LOOK at one - let alone have one wrapped round my body!!!! affraid affraid

    I must peruse SA some more - it's not at the top of my list at the moment - but definitely a must-see. The crime element worries me a bit - I've read there's no-go areas out there (even on some of the beaches) - so that's kind of put me off a bit. Is that all exaggerated? It can't be as bad as the papers make out - otherwise no-one would ever go there! It's still slightly off-putting, though.

    I love talking travelling and making plans to see new destinations - I've decided (except for a few special places) to go somewhere new every time I go away! sunny

    Strawbs
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    hyatum

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  hyatum on Thu Mar 22, 2012 7:18 pm

    Hi Strawbs


    OOOO, Stinky Tinky looks aweful! why would anybody want to go there. I remember the scenery around Antalya being very pretty with the high drop-offs but the beach I went to was very 'grey'. On the other hand I have travelled through some really hideous slums to get to some really amazing areas in Africa. Zanzibar has some beaches that are similar to Thailand but to get to them you have to go through very poor places. Anyway its always an adventure!!

    When I was in Bangkok I was actually at a conference and the organisers planned all sorts of interesting 'events' for us. One was a 'cook-off' where we were organised into teams, given traditional Thai recipes and had to head off in a longboat to the Dalat Aw Taw Kaw food market with a limited amount of Bart, haggle for our items and then hurry off to the cooking pavilion (can't remember the name but know it is near to the Golden Palace) prepare our food, decorate the tables and wait to be judged by one of Thailands premier chefs!!! Needless to say our team got so pie-eyed they were mixing up all the ingredients and some of the decoratations were going into the pot as well....don't think the judges were too impressed!! I remember we also jumped on a train full of locals, and headed out for about an hour to the fish market. There was a fortune-teller on the train, and she happily (for a small fee) gave us an insight to our futures. I am sure she made them up as she went along. lol! But it was great fun. The fish market is unbelievable....you can buy anything that lives in water......literally if it swims or moves in water they have it; snails, turtles, eels, frogs, all fish, crawfish, prawns, clams, oysters etc. Strawbs did you go to any of the floating markets? they are also very interesting. We went to the Kha market which is not very touristy...that you can only get to by longboat from the city. Being on the Islands was a whole lot better. We stayed on Phi Phi Don, Ko Samui and the ubiquitious Phuket. Besides the conference I was doing research for a story....on the use of wildlife in the tourism industry. I found it particularly galling on Phuket. I visited 8 elephant ride places and the conditions in which they were kept was appalling. As you said large birds (raptors) are also kept for tourist amusement and so are Macaque monkeys and lizards. What really disturbed me was that women would come around to the bars in the evening with very young girls ( i mean small around 4-6 years old) and sell flowers) but the little girls would do the selling and they would target men. Sit on their laps and smile. geek OMG it was sooooo sickening. Just perpetuating that whole cycle of enslavement of girl-children. I did not go to Pat-Pong....but there is a street in Phuket that is very similar!!!!!! tons of ladyboys, boys 'selling' macaques and lizards and a whole lot more affraid

    Talking of which. Have you ever seen monkeys swimming? There is a beach I think it was Phi Phi Don that has a monkey beach with lots of macques. We arrived there in our little boat and me being the big conservationist and photographe, I leapt off onto the beach and went to take pics of these amazing monkeys because they were leaping into the sea, swimming towards a yacht, climbing onto it and literally 'monkeying around'. Well the biggest male came hurtling out of a tree, ran at me...I stepped back..... dropped my camera bag and fell straight onto my arse!!! lol! I had all the other tourists laughing hysterically but I honestly thought that bloody cheeky monkey was going to bite me. Unfortunately the monkeys have been fed so now they expect food and they sometimes bite if you dont feed them.

    Ha, ha you made me laugh about your fear of snakes! My mom hated frogs. So she would round up all the toads and frogs in our pool, put them in a suitcase and send them with me to school (i was still pretty small) so I could release them there!!! study Of course I just got to the end of the drive-way and tipped them out into the hedge and they all wandered home again back to the lovely clean water. I really regret that I never told her why there was a never-ending supply of large bull-frogs. But can you imagine how it would have dented my image if i had exposed myself as a ferking frog fiend in junior school. The shame of it. lol! lol! I already had warts on my hands. affraid affraid

    The crime-rate here has definately gone down. And we locals are pretty street-wise and you just need to avoid bad areas and not be travelling around at night in dodgy places. Actually some of the countries around us are absolutely stunning and still quite unspoilt; Moz has the most spectacular beaches really breath taking and great for surfing and diving. Tanzania and Kenya have awesome wildlife safaris and good beaches too. Zambia and even Zim have amazing expansive river and wildlife areas. Actually right now most SA's find it a hassle to travel to EU countries because of the visa requirements, so it's easier to go to the Americas, the Middle East and the far East. We seem to be welcome in all the 'bad' countries! lol! We would probably be given a Royal salute in North Korea.......During my last visit to Turkey I did not even have to wait for ages with all the EU visitors, we now have our own immigration person for just certain African countries and Pakistan (great company we keep).... we dont pay anything and it takes five minutes!!!

    Cheers


    Nicks
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    ruby

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  ruby on Fri Mar 23, 2012 11:02 am

    Aw Bless Him, its only Murat the beach boy taking a siesta lol!
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    Turkishheartdrop

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Turkishheartdrop on Fri Mar 30, 2012 6:39 pm

    Looks luverly.....LOL......who wants st tropez when youve got Tinky....LOL......
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    Turkishheartdrop

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    Re: Favourite Destinations

    Post  Turkishheartdrop on Fri Mar 30, 2012 6:39 pm

    Looks luverly.....LOL......who wants st tropez when youve got Tinky....LOL......

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