KULTURE KIOSK

Yerevan: Modern Ruin

Posted by in Culture, Travel

CITY IN THE SHADOW OF ARARAT August is probably the worst time to be in Yerevan, the heat is constant, usually mid-thirties, that said you have to be somewhere in August. It all begins with a night train out of Tbilisi. Not your standard shabby affair either but a modern and well designed Russian train. The upper bunks don’t encroach on the lower ones, and there’s plenty of head space – at least for a person of average height. The metal steps can be neatly folded into the their slots…read more

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Tbilisi: We Got There in the End

Posted by in Culture, Travel

4AM ARRIVAL In the middle ages Tbilisi was known as the city of joy which is interesting because all I’m getting at four in the morning is a grumpy immigration officer and a long wait at the baggage carousel. For a moment I imagine my bag is somewhere in Athens where I’ve transited to get here (even Heathrow has no direct flight to Georgia at the time of writing).  There’s one hell of a draught coming through the baggage bay flaps and after a while my worries are soon laid…read more

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Batumi: Black Sea Casino Town

Posted by in Culture, Travel

BREAKFAST IN BATUMI If you’re a late riser then Batumi could be your town. Even the McDonald’s opens at 10am by which time (in the summer) it’s already hot and half the day is gone. There are few exceptions; modern coffee NOVA (8am), a street over on Gorgasali is Provence (9am) and Blue Elephant near McDs in the square. So I end up going to SPAR and buying a yogurt and coffee – cheaper if nothing else. Oh if you’re expecting a pain au chocolate with your coffee that too…read more

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Glasgow: Vision Thing

Posted by in Culture, Travel

SINCE YESTERDAY 15 years since my ill fated interview with Glasgow School of Art I return to Glasgow to find it more or less as I left it save for newbies like The Hydro, the revamped bus and train stations (Buchanan and Queen Street). It’s one of those cities I was never happy with my photos (though I have used some from previous visits to augment the places) From the outset at Glasgow Airport, Scotland proclaims itself OPEN but on first inspection Glasgow is as dirty if not dirtier than…read more

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Remembering Switzerland

Posted by in Culture, Travel

CHOCOLATE TRIANGLES, ROUND CLOCKS: SHAPES IN THE LAND OF THE SWISS CROSS Not one of my biggest players on the blog in terms of visitor numbers (compared to Germany or France) but nevertheless let me turn our attention to Switzerland! It was in April 2006 that I visited following on from Berlin the month previous (both with Easyjet). It seems I have no written record of my time in the land of alpine, chocolate and clocks other than the poem GVA which appears in Terminal Wanderlust (plug plug…) Trying hard NOT to…read more

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Frankfurt: Flashdance (I Can’t Stay Long)

Posted by in Culture, Design, Travel

AVGEEK SEEKS CULTURE As a junior commercial aviation addict I wanted to live in Frankfurt purely because it had a great airport. But what of the city? With a reputation as a boring finance town it has in recent times taken steps to reinvent itself as more than that. So let’s have a (very quick) look at its cultural make up…  Arriving around six in the morning the tourist info office is dead to the world so I peruse the train station and its many nooks and crannies stuffed full of…read more

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Remember That Flight

Posted by in Culture, Travel

Having taken 90 flights, flown 193,410 miles (311,263kms) or 7 times around the earth and spent over 2 weeks in the air (443 hours) since birth, this blog covers all the airlines I’ve flown with to date. 52 airports, 36 airlines, and 29 different aircraft (as of June 2022) *this blog contains affiliate links, let’s begin… 1 COURT LINE Luton – Barcelona – Luton It was the 70s, and airlines were getting funky with their colour schemes. Across the pond America’s Braniff flew planes in anything from Orange to Olive. At…read more

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Travel: Sleeping in Airports

Posted by in Travel

*this blog contains affiliate links STRANDED: WHERE TO SLEEP IN AIRPORTS With over 20 years travel experience there are times when the need to sleep in airports becomes a necessity. For example, your flight leaves at an unearthly time in the morning (Stansted), you’ve arrived at an unearthly hour (Shanghai) you’re in transit/have a long layover or the hostels in town are full. So far I’ve had nights at London Stansted, Venice, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Macau, Shanghai (Hongqiao), Cairo, Doha, Vienna, Barcelona and Warsaw Chopin (one day I’ll actually…read more

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Travel: Europe by Coach

Posted by in Transport, Travel

*this blog contains affiliate links BUS ABOUT EUROPE In recent years I’ve had the good fortune to travel extensively through eastern and now western Europe by train, ferry and bus. Today it’s the latter I’m going to focus on. The main players currently are: Eurolines, Flixbus and a couple of local biggies like ALSA in Spain, Polskibus in Poland, Ouibus in France and LUX Express in the Baltic States. As with the airlines it’s hit and miss on who will carry all my/your bags or only one and charge for the other….read more

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