A streetcar named Desire – Rio de Janeiro
Peter Allen and Barry Manilow have a lot to answer for. On the ground, Copacabana’s famed long curved beach is nothing like the postcards, nor are the glamours hotels. And the beach is strewn with rubbish. Read full article at Crikey travel blog
High times at the Cannabis Cup – Amsterdam
The Cannabis Cup is the Tour de France for pot heads from around the world. For US$199, stoners can buy a pass entitling them to sample the green stuff from nearly 30 participating “coffee shops” throughout the week-long festival and somehow pass judgement on what the best weed or resin is … Our Man in Amsterdam
The Truman Show – Sicily, Italy
Sitting and sipping drinks on Caffe Wunderbar’s alfresco terrace is like being perched on the edge of the world. Sky and sea seem to fuse in a wall of bright blue. Such is the hilltop town of Taormina’s precarious setting on the side of Sicily’s Mt Tauro that lots of places offer similarly spectacular views.
The day I met David Beckham – Phu Quoc, Vietnam
The wharf was at the bottom of a red-dirt road. I walked down past pepper trees and ramshackle huts, past grazing cows and a collection of road-side shops all selling the same thing. I kept going all the way to its end, until I came to the wharf. After that there was just the Gulf of Thailand.
Havana good time – Cuba
The thing you notice most about Le Habana Veija is the noise. Not intrusive; just ever changing and mostly uplifting. Walk down any street any time and be embraced by the din of Cuba’s decaying but elegant capital. Household and bar-room music imbues the mix with a constant, throbbing pulse.
Sunday morning in Monastiraki – Athens
Its haunting history and cultural heritage somehow tells the story of us all. Western democracy gets its bearings here. From the classical Acropolis to its chic shopping strips, Athens still befits its famous and ancient landmarks.
A night on the noodles – Sydney
“Excuse me, would two of these seats be free?” he says in a hurry. He sounds agitated. It’s 5.30pm. On a Friday. In October. Spring has sprung. Not the time of day or week or season for agitation, thank you. We’re outdoors in Hyde Park . The noodle markets are filling fast.
Drac tracking in Transylvania – Romania
Bram Stoker was probably the first author to find a historical, bloodthirsty figure entrenched in Transylvanian history and transfuse it into a bloody yarn of gothic eroticism. These days the myth of Dracula – and Sighisoara in particular – are being milked to the last bloody drop for the tourist dollars.