Guyana, South America

We are now entering Guyana which boasts a remarkably rich ecology, but also has one of South America's poorest economies. Tropical rainforests - filled with distinctive plants and trees, teeming with exotic birds, insects and mammals - are a big draw for eco-tourists. But political troubles, ethnic tension and economic mismanagement have left the former British colony with serious economic problems

Rio and Belem, Brazil

We’re doing a 21-day  Dragoman tour of French Guiana, Suriname and Guyana, the  three countries in South American that we haven’t visited. By the time we worked out how to get to Cayenne in French Guiana, and added a couple of other places we’d missed on previous trips, we suddenly had a 7-week trip. We’re flying into Rio, then flying to Cayenne via Belem, which was a good opportunity to stop and have a look at Belem, at the mouth of the Amazon.

Our upmarket trip on pirate ship to Komodo and back

We're starting another 10-day snorkeling boat trip today. However this one is a lot different from our last one, both in comfort AND price. According to the blurb, the boat we’re going on, Al Ikai (Queen of the Seas) is a two-masted wooden sailing ship traditionally known as a Phinisi (some call them "pirate ships"). Nowadays they don’t sail, as it is too labour intensive. It was originally hand built in 2005, but was completely refitted five years ago, and all cabins are air-conditioned with ensuite bathrooms with granite floors and tumbled marble walls, and with hot and cold water provided by a desalination plant