Travels with Sam 🌎

Hi @BonnyinBrighton

Thank you for the great recommendations and as an avid Sunday roast fan I will definitely be joining this fb group! :+1:t2::slightly_smiling_face:

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Those Unforgettable Travel Moments! :camera::mountain_snow::desert_island::parrot::earth_americas:

Have you ever had an unforgettable travel moment? By that I mean one where you have been completely blown away, either by the view or something that happened to you during your travels. Perhaps it was your first glimpse of Uluru (Ayers Rock), or a Scarlet Macaw flying so low that it brushes your hair with its flapping wings, a true moment that happened to me whilst walking along the street in the seaside town of Jaco, Costa Rica!

On occasions it will not be just the attraction that you have come to see or what the location is known for that takes you by surprise but something else that you witness or experience whilst you are there.

One example of this is when my husband and I visited Iguazú Falls in Brazil which is also on the border of Argentina and Paraguay. We were sat on the terrace of the Hotel das Cataratas having breakfast. A large male Coati passed by our table twice with his nose in the air before being shooed away by one of the waiters. A few moments later, a blur of a Coati came shooting towards us from the undergrowth, threw itself in to my open handbag and within a couple of seconds it was making a rapid exit with my packet of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups in its mouth, never to be seen again!
Every time I see a bag of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups now it definitely takes me back there! :sweat_smile:

These are just a couple of my unexpected and unforgettable travel moments.

What unforgettable travel moments have you had?

As I mentioned previously it can be somewhere that literally took your breath away at first sight or something unexpected or unforgettable that happened during your travels!

It would be lovely to hear your stories on here. :blush:

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My husband is a Geologist working in the Oil Industry and for 20 years we used all of our annual 6 weeks of leave to climb volcanoes mostly in the Sth Pacific but also Galapagos, Ecuador , Hawaii and Etna Sicily. The best experience was climbing the volcano on Ambae in Vanuatu… and seeing the volcanic lake in the caldera. It took 15 hours to climb up and another 9 hours to scramble down again. The village chief greeted us plus the guides with flares and drumming and the whole village had a feast of special volcano laplap plus brain numbing Cava….i had to soak my boots off in buckets of warm water as they were glued to my blisters and bloody skin. Now I’m 65 and I’m glad I did this before I got too old, my last volcano climb was in 2012.

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Firstly @Sam_F I’m blown away by all the amazing travel you’ve done as well as other folks on here, absolutely amazing!

I have one particular experience that stands out although i do not have a photo. Summer 04 while working in Denali National Park in the Alaskan interior employees were given what they called a “6pack” and no this wasn’t beer. Denali is remote and the majority of the park is not accessible to cars , so the park service has a shuttle service which takes you deep into the park which is an 85 mile dirt road. Denali is the closest thing in the states to being on a safari so wildlife is quite abundant. On one particular trip we we’re at mile 53 and it was there that i saw my first wild Wolf. There really are no words to describe the emotions I experienced with this encounter. He was the Black alpha male of one particular pack and it was something I’ll never forget. He ran across the road in front of us and he was too fast for a photo.

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Hi @BonnyinBrighton

Well there’s a thing! My husband John was going to be a Mud Logger and studied at the Royal School of Mines, part of Imperial College before changing professions to become an airline pilot which he did for 40 years. : )

It was interesting to read what you were saying about volcanoes, we have climbed Mount Etna and would really like to go back now because, I am not sure if you are aware, Etna is blowing smoke rings!! :volcano:

Back in 1987 on a working trip to Narita, Tokyo John and 12 of his crew climbed Mount Fuji. They left Narita at 2pm taking the train in to Tokyo, the subway to the bus terminal and then got a bus to Station 5 on Mount Fuji which rests at an altitude of 2,300. They arrived there at 10.30pm in the evening and commenced an overnight climb to reach the summit for sunrise, at an altitude of 3,776m. He said the climb was relatively easy being a steep path in most places with soup stations and rest houses scattered along the way where you could get your wooden staff branded. The most surprising thing he said, was that at the top, there was a set of steps with carved lions on either side leading up to the summit area, where you were greeted by a row of iced coffee vending machines!

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Best happy hour: Rock Creek Seafood and Spirits (bonus if you like the film 10 Things I hate About You: visit the Fremont Troll on the way to recreate that infamous scene).

Favorite Hike: anything in the Snoqualmie Pass but particularly Mason Lake trail adding on Mount Defiance Summit. Snow Lake to Gem Lake Trail.

Hidden Gem: Get your hands on the Seattle Urban Wineries map and DIY a wine tasting tour. Start in West Seattle (gorgeous water taxi ride) with Viscon Cellars and Pine Lake Winery then on the way back stop at three wineries right by the ferry terminal (Foundry Vineyards and Locus Winery and Browne Family Vibeyards).

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Hi @Catgoddess_99

These are such incredible moments that you never forget!

Back in October 2018, John and I had a similar experience when we visited Yosemite National Park. We had been to the Alwahnee Hotel for a drink and were driving out along the one way system as we were not actually staying in the park. Suddenly, and without warning, a young wolf jumped out in to the road and started lolloping down the road in front of us. We and the car beside us slowed and watched this gangly young wolf that appeared to be all legs continue down the road for approximately 100 yards before disappearing in to the forest. Again, it was such an unexpected experience that we too did not have any photos and just enjoyed the moment! :slightly_smiling_face:

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Yosemite is in my home neck of of the woods, just a hop , skip and a jump. So are you 100% sure you saw a Wolf and not a coyote. They’re similar, but there’s distinguishable differences. Coyotes can be very gangly and Wolves are much larger. Also, wolves are extremely rare in California and only recently a few packs have shown up in northern parts of the state. As a life-long Californian born and bred we haven’t had Wolves. Coyotes on the other hand are extremely common.

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Here’s a comparison photo


Top photo: left wolf, right Coyote
Bottom left Coyote right Wolf

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Hi @Catgoddess_99

Ahh yes, I stand corrected, it must have been a Coyote as there are no wolves as yet in Yosemite but we were unaware of this at the time of our sighting. We were convinced it looked like a wolf…:slightly_smiling_face:

Wow! You are very lucky. I am a huge fan of Yosemite National Park and it’s awe-inspiring beauty. :heart:

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It’s easy to confuse the two especially if you’re unfamiliar with the wildlife of that area.

Btw, I finally made my decision for my in between dates. I’ll leave doncaster Friday and spend two night’s in York, then on Saturday a day tour to whitby and the Yorkshire Moors. Sunday train to brighton for two nights then likely Brockenhurst on Tuesday for two night’s before heading to Overton. So many choices which makes it challenging. Thanks again for all your suggestions.

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Hi @Catgoddess_99

You are very welcome and that sounds like a great plan :+1:t2::slightly_smiling_face:

I’ll be in Brighton from Sunday the 21st through Tuesday . I’m looking forward to scoping out the sites. I’ll definitely check out your suggestions.

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@Catgoddess_99 while in Brighton treat yourself to a drink at the bar in The Ivy in The Lanes

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In Brighton I’m more of a ‘Twisted Lemon’ kind of lady as this particular cocktail bar just across the way from the ‘Instagram set’ that parade themselves at The Ivy and is housed in a 17th century cottage down a dark alley in an old P*rn Shop!! …….:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
The Ivy is very glamorous though for special occasions I’ve been there for birthdays. It has the most luxurious rest rooms in the City….:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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Thank you for the suggestion, but I’m not much of a bar person and rarely drink…

Hi @Crookie @Catgoddess_99 @BonnyinBrighton

Also The Ivy restaurants including The Ivy In The Lanes currently have their £19.17 menu for two courses and you can add a dessert for an additional £5. This is in celebration of the year The Ivy made its debut in the heart of the West End in 1917. This particular menu is available Mondays to Wednesdays 11.30am till close and Thursdays and Fridays 11.30am till 6.30pm. This is in addition to their other delicious menus! :slightly_smiling_face:

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Just for fun… What’s the best souvenir that you have bought on your travels or a memento you have acquired? :luggage::earth_americas:

Souvenirs evoke memories of our travels, of where you have been or perhaps how you got there. They can bring a smile to your face when you remember how they came to be in your possession or, as in our case, what was required to get them back safely without breakage! Perhaps there is a souvenir in your possession that has a story to tell in its own right, not just about where it came from.

In October 2016 John and I completed a 3 week road trip on a motorbike or for all you motorbike enthusiasts out there, a BMW GTL K1600. We collected the bike from Eagle Rider in Phoenix and our first stop was the Grand Canyon. Whilst there we visited the Desert View Watchtower, it was here that I wandered off and fell in love with a delicate 30cm tall model of a White Bear Navajo Kachina Doll and I just had to have it! The Bear Kachina doll represents great power to cure the sick, and is also a source of strength and courage.

When John eventually found me I had already paid for the Kachina Doll and John’s first question to me was how on earth are we going to get this home, given that we are at the start of a 3 week motorbike holiday and had very limited luggage space of 2 panniers and 1 top box! The problem seemed large enough but when the shop assistant took the Kachina Doll she then bubble wrapped it to such an extent that it had then doubled in size! But, with a bit of deft rearranging, we managed to find a space for it in the top box much to my relief and it survived the rest of the holiday & the journey home and has pride of place in a window in our lounge. :sweat_smile::motorcycle:

Perhaps you have a memento such as ticket stub that you have kept from an event that you attended, either for example the Super Bowl, the Olympics, a concert or an exhibition etc. These can also bring back wonderful memories.

So the question is what’s the best souvenir or memento that you have acquired during your travels? … and perhaps it has a story to go with it? :luggage::earth_americas::slightly_smiling_face:

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I’ve purchased many memorable souvenirs over the years long before joining the THS platform, and some I still have, now


with that said I no longer invest in souvenirs unless it’s small ( usually jewelery) and i can easily pack it. However during my recent time in Scotland , while visiting a friend who runs the Inverness Cat rescue following a sit, i couldn’t resist this little monster. Ultimately it will be gifted most likely to one of my grand nieces, but for now she’s a photo bomber to show that not only did I find Nessie, but she plays the bagpipes.

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That Kachina doll looks like a Westie terrier and rather scarey
Obviously not a real Kachina which for the Hopi tribe have deep religious meanings.

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