I was woken up by the sound of a disembodied female voice speaking in heavily Korean-accented but clear English: ”This is an announcement of government support team. Your meal will be served shortly. Please do not open your door except …

Coronavirus Quarantine in Korea Read More »

The above photo is Taipei from the Earth God Temple in Nanshijiao, but I’m writing this post in Korea, where I recently did a 14-day stint in government quarantine in order to enter the country (after having to leave Taipei …

Taiwan: life (almost) as normal during the pandemic Read More »

When I visited home last year I finally had the chance to scan the rest of my old pre-digital pics, resulting in a series of photo posts of travels past. Here’s a bunch of pics from two day-trips we took …

Two Cool Oregon Road Trips Read More »

Akihabara: ground zero for the weird & whacky otaku Japan that exists mostly in the fantasies of nerds who love manga & anime or shitty J-pop music. It’s niche rather than representative, but it’s an interesting little corner of Tokyo …

Visiting a Maid Cafe in Akihabara, Tokyo Read More »

Kaikoura’s a cute little town located on a gorgeous stretch of coastline an hour north of Christchurch on New Zealand’s South Island. It offers lovely scenery, a laid back atmosphere, and famous seafood (crayfish in particular), but the main draw …

Whale Watching in Kaikoura, New Zealand Read More »

One of the best things you can do in New Zealand is just simply drive somewhere a few hours away. This is especially true if you have your own wheels (though the bus rides are lovely too), and especially true …

A few pics of New Zealand’s stunning roads Read More »

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be the second summer games held in Japan’s capital, and the fourth in Asia (following Tokyo 1964, Seoul 1988, and Beijing 2008). Tokyo’s changed a lot since 1964 (and is surely a much easier city …

Tokyo 2020 Olympics guide Read More »

Getting stuck somewhere isn’t usually what you have in mind when dreaming of seeing the world, but if you do much long-distance backpacking it’s bound to happen at some point – in fact, it’s all part of the fun. You …

On Getting Stuck Read More »

…and that’s how they do New Year fireworks in Taipei. We were stood about a mile west of Taipei 101, just up the road from our friend’s bar. The crowds are like this along whichever roads have a view of …

Happy New Year & Updates from Taipei Read More »

For the last 10 weeks since getting back to Taipei I’ve been staying in Sanchong, a rough & ready district of New Taipei across the Tamsui River to the west of Taipei proper. It’s actually on a large island, with …

Life in Taipei: 10 weeks in Sanchong Read More »

Tamsui is a nice little town at the mouth of the Tamsui River in New Taipei City, at the northern end of the Taipei Metro Red Line. It’s a popular spot to get out of the city for a day …

A Taipei Day Out: from Bali to Tamsui by ferry Read More »

Hello from Taipei, where I recently arrived back after a month in Japan for the Rugby World Cup while running my website Rugby Guide Japan (archived here), and before that a month seeing family back home (though I likely won’t …

2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan Read More »

This is the main navigation page for my old website Rugby Guide Japan, which was a guide to help rugby fans visiting Japan for the 2019 Rugby World Cup. Following the end of the tournament I took the website down, …

Rugby Guide Japan Archive Read More »

Tokyo obviously has more than plenty to see & do in its own right, and you can easily fill your free time between events (see here). But if you have a few days spare between, before, or after your events, …

Japan Sightseeing Guide Read More »

Transportation Within Tokyo You’ll mostly travel by train within Tokyo (and probably any other cities you visit), with the majority of Olympic venues easily walkable from their nearest train station (though there are a few outliers which will presumably have …

Japan Transportation Guide Read More »

This post originally appeared on my Rugby Guide Japan website (which is archived here if you want to check it out), providing information for rugby fans attending 2019 Rugby World Cup matches in Japan. But obviously autumn is still autumn …

Japan Autumn Colours Guide for the Rugby World Cup Read More »

Despite the high tech reputation (or perhaps due to it), first time visitors to Japan may be surprised to find things actually more analogue than they’re used to at home. Cash is king, and subway tickets are paper stubs; until …

Tokyo 2020: how to get online in Japan Read More »

Where to Stay Use Hotels Combined to scan all the online booking engines for the best rates. For recommendations on specific areas to stay in see here Search for the best deals on hotels in Tokyo Airbnb is also a great option …

Tokyo 2020 Olympics: useful links & resources Read More »

An oft-quoted fact in media travel & food articles about Tokyo is that the Japanese capital has more Michelin stars than any other city on earth. This is often presented as something of a surprising statistic, but of course given …

The Quest for Michelin Starred Ramen in Tokyo Read More »

Where to Stay for the Tokyo Olympics For the majority of events it’s best to stay somewhere in central Tokyo. Click on each area name to search it on Hotels Combined: All things considered, Shinjuku is probably the best call, …

Tokyo Quick Guide Read More »