Lap-Lap on Epi Island and the black magic of Ambrym

3. Anchorage at one of the Vanuatu islandsAlabama anchored in Lamen Bay

15.08.2017

Finally the day that we will sail on an expedition around Vanuatu comes. Our plan is to spend at least a month in the region as the typhoon season hasn’t yet finished in the northern hemisphere so sailing to Korea now would be dangerous. Instead we will travel around Vanuatu and in this way we will also test the yacht for any defects.

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Vanuatu – the colorful life of Efate Island

Vanuatu

Capital: Port Vila
Population: around 200 000 people, mainly Melanesian
Area: 12 190 square kilometers
Official religion: Christianity, mainly Presbyterian and some Catholic
State system: Parliamentary Republic, they got independence from France in 1980
Currency: Vatu (1 dollar is 100 Vatu)
Language: the official languages are Bislama (Creole Pidjin), English and French

 

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Pirates of the Southern Seas

LRM_EXPORT_20180414_010827Pirates of the Southern Seas

IMPORTANT! This post is not chronological. We skipped some posts about Indonesia and Papua New Guinea FOR NOW. They will be translated later. For the moment we will post in advance a few stories from our sails with the yacht “Alabama”.

(So in short: before this we traveled some more islands in Indonesia, mainly hitchhiking, then we spent two incredible months in Papua New Guinea and found a yacht to Fiji. There we later encountered “Alabama” and its lovely crew who quickly became our family.)

Let’s go back to “Alabama”. We are accommodated in one of the many cabins of the boat and everyone had their own. The yacht is really spacious, with wooden cladding that gives the impression of an old ship. Not only her current crew is unorthodox, but its whole story. We find some documents on board, from which we learn that one of his previous owners used the boat to traffic drugs, and three members of the crew were killed, one of whom was beheaded by pirates or drug barons in southern Philippines. Well, we certainly will not sail with her around the Philippines 🙂

Lines are being pulled, people climb up and down between the engine compartment and the deck. One is running, the other is rocking in the hammock, the third one smoking a cigarette, the fourth brewing coffee in the kitchen, the fifth taking a shower naked , the sixth singing or playing the guitar… The crew consists of ten really interesting people with dreadlocks  and hippy outlooks. The atmosphere is joyous.

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The magical world of Flores Island, buffalo races on Sumbawa Island, evil dwarfs and tri-color lakes

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There are not so many people on the ferry and almost no foreigners. Actually there is a group of strange looking motor-bikers with checkered shirts, tyrants and cloths on their heads. Later we find out they are Dutch. In two hours we reach the port Poto Tano and head to the capital of the province Sumbawa Besar in the truck we hitchhiked to enter the ferry. Continue reading

5 Natural Sights for the Disabled Traveler to Discover (GUEST POST)

Holidays are the highlight of most peoples’ year. They allow us the chance to let our hair down and relax from the strife and struggles of daily life. That’s just as true for travelers with a disability as it is for anyone else.

Don’t let a medical condition hold you back. There are plenty of amazing locations all waiting to be explored. Today, let’s look at some of the most impressive for you to get to grips with.

1. Hanauma Bay – Honolulu

Hanauma Bay is an idyllic spot in Hawaii’s capital of Honolulu. There are a myriad of beautiful and exotic fish on display there, which can be seen swimming relatively close to the shoreline.

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East Java – the fiery breath of the Earth

bromo-sutrin

The volcano Bromo

09.07

We are ten kilometers away from Ngandjuk. After breakfast we start hitchhiking. A strange couple takes us – a transvestite and a young driver. Magy doesn’t even realize that this is a man and believes that the driver is his/her son and that s/he has three more as s/he tries to convince us. Anyway the people are nice. After that we start hitchhiking using the new method: walking and waving. One car tries to stop, almost causes a crash, and then continues. In a while it comes back, forms a traffic jam and takes us. Inside is an amiable family from Madura. They will takes us directly to the incredible Elizabeth, our host from Jakarta, who is now in her hometown Surabaya. This time we travel really fast and take the 100 km for just 6 hours 🙂
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West Sumatra – Muslim matriarchate, smoking volcanoes and the god of the bees

 

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Minangkabau museum in West Sumatra

29.05

We take off as usually at noon. Today hitchhiking goes very well, as usual. We couldn’t understand what was it yesterday and why no one stopped for whole six hours. A middle aged man with a lustful look in his eyes takes us to Panyabungan 3 kilometers down the road and then he decides to help us even more and take us after the town. Then we start hitchhiking small trucks and jeeps without waiting much.

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