Dan's Travel Experiences


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It's a Wonderful World

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The world is a wonderful, amazing and beautiful place, full of both natural and man-made wonders. From the glaciers of Alaska to the rain forests of Costa Rico to the outback of Australia, there are great things to see and experience. Watching travelogues is nice, but can't begin to match actually seeing, hearing, and smelling the real thing. I can show you a picture of whale petting, but I can't show you the wonder of actually touching one of these big beasts. On this page I hope to share some of that adventure with you.

The Happy Wanderer!
This picture was taken as I returned from a 5 week tour of Europe using my backpack as my suitcase.

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Although most of my travel has been alone, some of the best was when I had a traveling companion. There is something special about sharing and discussing an experience. My wife and I took a Caribbean cruise on a big ship and it was definitely better than if I had gone alone. My daughter Beth was with me as we cruised the Alaska Inside Passage on the small ship shown in the picture. That experience convinced me that small is better. My grandson Robert and I were together on a luxury yacht touring the Galapagos. My grandson Alex and I toured the Baja and the Sea of Cortez on the same ship that his mother and I were on going to Alaska. I took my adopted daughter Alice back to her native land of Korea for the first time since she was adopted from there at age 2. These were all memory building times.

Places I have been. (Click for Details)
AlaskaAustraliaBaja BelgiumBrazilCaribbean Costa Rica
FranceGalapagosGermanyHong Kong IndiaIsraelItaly
JapanKoreaNetherlandsNova ScotiaSt. Lawrence Seaway SingaporeSweden
Switzerland

Baja and The Sea of Cortez

One of the highlights of this trip was whale petting in the Bay of Magdalene. The gray whales come here each year to calve in this sheltered area. When the whalers discovered this, they came in and slaughtered. The mother whales vigorously tried to protect their calves, even smashing the whaleboats. They behaved so viciously that the whalers nicknamed them devilfish. After the whales were protected, they eventually stopped fearing humans. Some of the whales have learned that if they come up gently beside the tourist boats, the tourist will scratch and pet them! Both tourists and whales like it very much! So, the true nature of the devilfish is at last revealed.

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Costa Rica

Costa Rica is noted for rain forests and volcanoes. Some are still active. Some, like Poas shown below, are just spitting steam and fumes. I had specifically requested to have a guide to take me to Poas so that I could look down in the crater like the people shown in the newspaper photograph below. Alas, it was completely shrouded in low hanging clouds and mist. However, there were many other interesting places and experiences that made the trip enjoyable

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Galapagos

In Galapagos we cruised from island to island, stopping at various islands of interest. We were on a small luxury yacht called the Reina Silvia, which means Queen Silvia. It is named after the Swedish queen who loaned the operator the money to build the yacht. silvia.jpg

The wildlife on Galapagos has never had to fear humans so one is able to walk up quite closely to them.  The picture below shows Robert with a giant tortoises.

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seal.jpg Robert was delighted to be able to frolic with the seal pups.
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Blue footed Boobies are a common sight and quite approachable.

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