Changing my mind about San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Changing my mind about San Miguel de Allende, Mexico copy

A couple of years ago I visited San Miguel de Allende. I wrote a post on my visit at the time, saying that it was a pretty place, that it was well equipped as a Western retirement spot, but that I had found it overly ‘gringorized’. A few people weren’t happy with me saying that.

Coming back recently to visit my mother I have to admit I really loved my time there. What changed? A couple of things, most not really not having to do with San Miguel itself. [Read more…]

Visiting beautiful Guanajuato and Queretaro, Mexico – and how to lose 5 lbs in 2 days

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Mexico is the place of names I can’t remember or pronounce. Guanajuato translates (from the indigenous Indian language in this area) as “hilly place of frogs”. It was the richest Mexican city in the 18th [Read more…]

Visiting San Miguel de Allende, Mexico (and why it is not the best city in the world)

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San Miguel de Allende has a reputation as an American enclave in Mexico. Ex-pats living in other parts of Mexico (including other Americans) often malign the Americans who live here: “They have no interest [Read more…]

A visual tour of Mexico City (and why I was incredibly impressed)

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Mexico City was not somewhere I had ever wanted to go. It was actually one of those places most likely to be on my ‘avoid’ list. I had a banker friend (with Scotiabank [Read more…]

Photo Essay – Sunsets and Volcanoes in Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua

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Within Lake Nicaragua, which is the largest lake in Central America, lies Isla Ometepe. It is a small island shaped like an hourglass – both sides of the hourglass being volcanoes (Concepcion on one side, Maderas on the other) [Read more…]

Visiting Granada, Volcan Masaya, and Laguna de Apoyo – Nicaragua

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Every year I plan a one week trip with my mother. This time she surprised me by announcing that she’d like to meet up in Nicaragua.

We only had a week together, so we decided to stick to the area south of Managua; Granada, Masaya, Lake Nicaragua, Isla Ometepe – a manageable area that wouldn’t require too much travelling around.

Our base was Granada, which is known as a city rich in colonial history. [Read more…]

Photo Essay of a trip through Southwest Germany: Lindau, Sigmaringen, Freiburg and Breisach

A trip through Southwest Germany
Every year I try to get together with my mom for a week somewhere. This year we met up in Lindau, in Southern Germany, and explored a few places in the region. Here is a quick summary  – with lots of photos – of places covered over 5 days. [Read more…]

Travel Tips and pleasant surprises – Regensburg, Germany

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Regensgurg is one of the oldest towns in Germany and was once the capital of Bavaria. The city amazed me. First of all, the Cathedral is stupendous. The [Read more…]

Beautiful Lake Maninjau, West Sumatra – and going Rambo on the locals


After Lake Toba, my mom and I took the bus back to Medan where we boarded a flight to Padang in West Sumatra.

I never really took to West Sumatra for reasons I will soon explain. The highlight, geographically, was Lake Maninjau. Like Lake [Read more…]

Misadventures in Lake Toba, Sumatra

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Above: from the island, looking out around the volcanic rim surrounding the lake

Romlan (run by a German lady) consists of 8 large and comfortable bungalows with hot running water. The setting is spectacular; I would wake up every morning to views of [Read more…]