Cherry Blossoms in Japan – In Photos

Sakura, as they’re known in Japan, bloom once a year all over the country and the Japanese go mad for it! There are festivals, decorations everywhere, sakura-themed food and everyone flocks to their nearest park to sit under the trees to admire the blossoms (or Hanami, as viewing blossoms are known in Japan), often with a picnic full of little plates to share and lots of sake!

For more info on where to see some of the best displays of cherry blossoms in Japan, check out this post Best Places to see Cherry Blossoms in Japan

But for now, take in the beauty of this little pastel flower that has the whole world watching!


A cherry blossom lined canal near Nanzen-ji Temple in Kyoto



Cherry blossom lined canals in Pontocho, Kyoto

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20 Most Instagramable Places in Western Australia’s South West


The south-west of Western Australia is a perfect road trip destination filled with world-class wineries, great beaches, forests giants and delicious foods.

Whether you’re a photographer trying to nail the perfect shot or just like sharing pretty places on social media, these spots in Western Australia’s south-west, will get the likes flooding in fast!

Don’t forget the south-west hashtags!
#australiassw #southwest #southwestlife #justanotherdayinwa #thisiswa #explorewa


1. Wyadup Rocks, near Yallingup

Also known as Nature’s Spa, this protected sea pool sits between Wyadup Bay and Injidup Bay, just south of Yallingup.
To get there, turn off Caves Rd and head to the end of Wyadup Rd, then walk down the pathway over the rocks towards the right which takes you to the natural spa. Don’t forget to also check out nearby Canal Rocks.
Tags: #wyaduprocks #naturesspa #naturalspa #wyadupbay #injidupbay #yallingup

Refreshing places to float. 🍩 Vol. I

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Getting My Freak On at Port Arthur

I’m someone that sits on the fence when it comes to the spirit world, I don’t disbelieve it, but until I see irrefutable proof, there will always be a little part of my brain that will say ‘weeeell, maybe’.
The rest of my brain, however, wholeheartedly believes and the little, disbelieving corner of grey goop lets it because it’s nice to think our departed loved ones are still around and that we can communicate with them.

It was that optimistic part of my brain that jumped at the chance to join a Paranormal Investigation Tour at the very haunted Port Arthur World Heritage site on Tasmania’s south-east coast.


Port Arthur has two distinct histories. An old one and a modern one, both terrible in their own ways. For those that are unaware, in 1996, a psychopath gunned down 35 people and wounded another 23. It was an event that shocked the nation to its core and spurred Australia’s strict gun control laws.
I had no interest in disturbing these souls. I paid my respects at the beautifully sombre memorial while walking around the site during the day but was glad to see the paranormal tour is conducted far away from the massacre area.

The nocturnal residents I wished to meet were from the convict era.

From 1833-1877 Port Arthur was a prison for Tasmania’s convicts who had become secondary offenders during their lengthy Transportation holiday.
While physical punishments were handed out, it was the psychological punishments that made Port Arthur unique. Most notably, those in need of extra punishment were hooded and made to stay silent in light-sealed, tiny cells, sometimes for months at a time. An act administrators thought would give the prisoner time to reflect. Instead, it often had the unintended outcome of inducing mental illness through lack of sight and sound. Continue reading

Mt Fuji’s Hidden Kimono Museum

It took awhile to find, which was more a reflection of my inability to read a map than its hidden location, but the rise of stone stairs to a carved wooden door would indicate that I’d finally found the Itchiku Kubota Art Museum.

Itchiku Kubota Art Museum

Entrance to the garden

Situated in the foothills near the north shore of Lake Kawaguchi overlooking Mt Fuji, is a place worth a visit even if just to see the garden alone. From outside its walls, amber hues drape over the carved entrance created from multiple doors said to have come from Indian castles. Stepping over the threshold feels invasive like you’re intruding into some Japanese feudal lord’s private garden, but intrude I will!

While pretty all year-round, autumn is when the garden stands out with a profusion of foliage ranging from deep reds through to golden yellow. It’s spectacular!

Gravel paths meander through a small forest filled with purposely-placed rocks, ponds and waterfalls, all meticulously designed by the museum’s namesake, Itchiku Kubota.


Inside the garden

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Give Me All the Meat Fruit – Dinner and Theatre with Heston

“Hi, do you know where we can find Dinner?”
“You might have to be more specific, what kind of meal were you after?”
“No, it’s called Dinner. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, that’s the name of the restaurant.”

It’s an awkward but simplistically accurate name, although being a Heston restaurant you would assume a name like ‘The Curious & Bewildering Dinner Experience’, would be more apt.

Its dimly lit interior, hidden away in the echelons of Melbourne’s Crown Casino, deceives the eyes but the space has been well designed to ensure the tables themselves are well lit. It’s dark but warm, minimalist yet sleek and stylish.

The first thing to pique my interest is the rows of stripped pineapples strung up like kebab slabs in front of a wall grill. Ah Tipsy Cake – I’ve pre-read the menu online.


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The Witches Market of La Paz

El Mercado de las Brujas… the name just rolls off the tongue and straight into the cauldron. For some, it conjures up images of elderly ladies with sun-withered skin and charms strung around their neck who beckon you into their small, gritty stall decorated with shriveled animal parts for fortunes told.

la paz bolivia witches market 4Alas, it’s a little more touristy but fortunately, there’s still plenty of interesting sights to see at Bolivia’s Witches Market in La Paz.

You’ll know you’re in the right area when you spot the tiny herds of dried, llama fetuses hanging out the front that are sure to startle a few wide-eyed tourists.

While you might cry, Whyyy, what did those lil unfortunates do to deserve that?!’ keep in mind that llamas have a high natural abort rate due to genetically fragile wombs and with the animal being common livestock in Bolivia, the desiccated carcasses in varying stages of development, aren’t exactly hard to come by.  Continue reading

Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour

Backyard Tourist – Welcome to My Fremantle


Sometimes when your next big trip is too far away but the travel itch is compelling you to do something, anything! It might pay to look at your hometown through the eyes of a visitor.

The port city of Fremantle, lies 22kms south-west of Western Australia’s capital, Perth. Initially a separate town, suburban sprawl has connected the two in the past few decades.

Young by European or even US standards, but old in Anglo-Australian years, it was settled only because they didn’t want those cheese-eating surrender monkeys (the French), to colonise part of Australia. They’d been hanging around the coasts and the British, who’d been a bit blasé about the west,  finally gave in to Captain Stirling who was lobbying for a free settlement here.
Two years later in 1830, my 3rd great grandfather arrived at the new Swan River Colony which is why I feel such a connection with the place.

There are three main reasons for visiting Fremantle, the history, the café culture and the art scene. Continue reading