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Nov
19
2012

In my first two posts in this series I went over the theory behind choosing the right camera for your trip, or even just for every day use. In this post I’m going to talk about the camera I chose and why, and how it’s been working out after three months of travel. I’ll also detail my complete kit and talk about the choices I made regarding lenses and accessories.

Oct
29
2012

Solitude Among the Eight Peaks of Mt. Koya

Written by Tony October 29, 2012
Posted in Japan

In a country full of holy sites, Mount Koya is one of the most sacred. This is no small feat considering the tremendous religious heritage permeating nearly every corner of Japan. Nearly 1200 years ago the monk Kukai settled among Koya’s eight peaks and founded Koyasan, which is now the world headquarters for the Shingon sect of Buddhism. In addition to Koyasan’s sacrosanct stature in the world of Buddhism, many of the temples in the mountain city offer room and board to pilgrims, a nice boon considering how relatively inaccessible the city is – by Japanese standards anyway – and a large part of what drew us to the tiny mountain hamlet.

Oct
09
2012

Oh Deer! A Daytrip to Nara

Written by Tony October 9, 2012
Posted in Japan

Over 1300 years old, Nara is steeped in history. An easy day trip from Kyoto, it seemed a foolish mistake to miss visiting the city when we would be in Kyoto for nearly a week. Armed with the knowledge that Nara park (Nara-kōen) was the real showpiece of the city, we set off in the morning to see what we could discover.

Oct
02
2012

Captivated in Kanazawa

Written by Tony October 2, 2012
Posted in Japan

In our early research into Japan, we devoured pretty much any information we could find that we thought would give us a sense of what cities we might like to visit. As we were reading about Kanazawa and Takayama several sources gave us the impression that these two cities are essentially interchangeable, and a visit to one obviates a visit to the other. This seemed like a reasonable thing to say, having never visited the cities, but as our luck would have it our CouchSurfing journey took us through both, allowing us to judge for ourselves.

Sep
20
2012

Capturing the Castle in Matsumoto

Written by Tony September 20, 2012
Posted in Japan

Matsumoto is an average city in Japan that would probably fall off any tourist’s radar if not for one thing: its beautifully restored six-story wooden castle. It also happens to be a gateway to Japan’s alps, but given how Steph feels about hiking, it’s safe to say we came to see the castle!

Sep
07
2012

Temple Gazing in Nikko

Written by Tony September 7, 2012
Posted in Japan

As we were planning our trip, reading about all the possible places we could go, the word UNESCO kept cropping up, again and again. It seemed as though all the most interesting places in the world were either on the list or awaiting consideration. When we read about Nikko, a treasure trove of UNESCO sites and a proverbial slice of old Japan situated just 90-minutes away from Tokyo, it seemed like an obvious choice for our itinerary.

Aug
29
2012

Capture the Colour

Written by Tony August 29, 2012

Just by the skin of our teeth, we’re entering TravelSupermarket’s Capture the Colour travel photography contest! We were graciously nominated by our friends Vicky & Dave of A Couple Travelers and we couldn’t let their nomination be in vain. Because we have only been traveling on our big trip for 20 days at this point, […]

Aug
25
2012

Tokyo District Spotlight: Asakusa

Written by Tony August 25, 2012
Posted in Japan

Some guidebooks describe the Asakusa area of Tokyo as a glimpse into the past. A chance to see old Edo and wander through close alleys filled with quaint shops selling traditional goods. Perhaps our time there was misspent or we lack the necessary perspective, but we spent a lot of time in Asakusa, and it […]

In my last post I waxed a little poetic and dealt with the more esoteric considerations of choosing a camera. This time around we need to tackle some of the actual nuts and bolts of a camera purchase. Some of the jargon can seem overwhelming at first, but don’t worry! Once you start to browse […]

The camera you choose is more about your travel style than anything else. It’s also about just how much you are willing to put up with to get the photos you want. It’s not true to say that there are unlimited options when it comes to choosing a camera, but it’s easy to become overwhelmed […]

On a day to day basis it’s easy to be overwhelmed by communication options. G-chat, cell phones, texts, e-mails, Skype, land-line phones (gasp!), even face-to-face conversations. When you’re going about your daily business all of this can be a bit much to deal with, but when facing the prospect of being abroad for an extended […]

May
08
2012

A Tale of Two Backpacks

Written by Tony May 8, 2012

Welcome to our backpack resource. It’s safe to assume that you’re reading this post for one of a few select reasons: You are going on some sort of trip and want advice on what kind of backpack to buy. You have your own ideas about what is right and wrong in the world of backpacks, […]

May
08
2012

How to Choose a Bag

Written by Tony May 8, 2012

If you’re looking for the story of how we chose our bags, you’re looking for this page. We’ll have a separate post dealing with our daypacks soon! If you just want the backpack advice, read on! How you’ll use it The first thing to consider when you are looking at packs is how you’ll be […]

Apr
29
2012

Changing, Quitting, Starting.

Written by Tony April 29, 2012
Posted in Musings, Pre-trip

I initially scoffed (I honestly don’t know why, maybe I was grumpy) when Steph read this quote to me. It feels right now, though. I quit my job on Friday. You should know that I didn’t just walk out and slam the door, I gave a month’s notice and had a great conversation with my […]