A Travellerspoint blog

Dubai - India

Sensory Overload (as already warned by Julia Atwell). Also avoided being scammed, thanks to Rhiannon Williams :)

sunny 40 °C
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Delhi - where to start?

Flew through the airport and into a taxi feeling pretty confident. Then we hit the traffic. Chaos like you've never seen, cars, buses, bikes, tut tuts, rickshaws and people walking along the equivalent to our motorways but with no clear lanes. Everyone fighting for their inch of space and constantly on their horns. This I've quickly learned is the usual sound track for Delhi.

The hostel that had been pre booked turned out to be more or less as expected. On the plus side, it's very clean (all shoes left at door), the common room is comfortable with constant air con, plus the staff are really helpful. On check in we filled in the register and the next nearest in age person to us was 24. Think we can safely say we are reliving our youth!

First difficulty was fitting our 'little' travel bags into our assigned lockers. A task which Jaquie unfortunately failed. I put it down to the 8 kg of toiletries she's brought!

We were shattered from our journey, plus it was hammering down, so we decided to join in with a couple of our new friends and share some delivery pizza! Bit of a surprise when it arrived and was a curry pizza. Strange, but nice. Ate it whilst watching a lightening show from the window - very surreal.

As anyone who knows me will know, sleeping in a room of eight with people coming in and out all night was absolutely no problem for me. Jaquie on the other hand didnt fare as well and for the first time since we started, ended up listening to me snore rather than the other way round. I should say at this point I snore gently, more like a purr really!

Feeling refreshed we set out on our adventure. Crossing the road, across a ridiculous interchange thing with cars from all directions then into the metro. What a surprise.... It was calm and ordered even though it was packed and would put our underground to shame. Everyone queing for carriages plus, a women only one which was good.

Coming out of the metro we were mobbed by rickshaw drivers/cyclists and in the end decided to just go with it. The decision proved to be a good one as we got to see Old Delhi and all its alleyways, markets etc. Feeling relatively safe. All was going well until the last stop at the tourist information where we wanted to pick up some maps etc. The guy basically tried all sorts of stories etc. To get us to buy trips, train tickets, tours etc. And wasn't happy when we refused and left. Rhiannon had already warned us this might happen so we felt a bit prepared. On leaving further guys followed us trying to 'help' us to the right place but we eventually shook them and made it to the sanctuary of the Metro and home. Phew!

Next task is to try and sort out how to get to our next destination, as we've heard so many conflicting stories. Wish us luck and if we make it there we will see you in Rickikesh and our Yoga Ashram

Posted by ClareRoach 04:30 Archived in India Comments (0)

Muscat, Oman

Flying Visit

sunny 44 °C
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We are only in Muscat for two nights, so one full day really. Arrived at tea-time Saturday and found our hotel no problem.

We are staying in the Mutrah area about a twenty minute walk from the Mutrah Souks and the Cornishe area which includes a sea front and harbour. (See photos)

People are very courteous but as we walked into the centre we did feel very conspicuous, first night nerves I guess. Soon got over them and enjoyed a chicken shawarma (photo to the right) which was delicious and came with warm flat breads and amazing hummus (the same as we had in Dubai Chris).

Once we finished exploring, we took a taxi back and arranged with our 'chatty' taxi driver to do a tour to make the most of the time we have. It also worked out about half the cost of the hop on, hop off buses so good value which is important if we are to have any chance of sticking to our budget.

Breakfast was included in our stay but not worth getting up for. Could have had an extra half hour in bed. Turns out our taxi tour was the highlight of Muscat, along with Abdul our guide. Loads of pictures and I warn you now, there are some mosque/opera house pictures which I can assure you are spectacular in real life but suspect they don't translate that well in pictures.

Chandeliers for you Ali and opera house/hidden lights for you Cerys :)

Can't believe just how hot it is here, it's not really worth washing cause I'm just a lovely puddle of sweat by the time im dressed again, not a pleasant sight! Night doesn't seem to make any difference either.

We are off out for food shortly, then airport again in the morning, this time for DELHI, India. See you there x

Posted by ClareRoach 05:57 Archived in Oman Comments (0)

Dubai

What a way to start!!!

sunny 40 °C
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Had an amazing couple of days in Dubai and writing this having finally squashed the very last item back into the backpack. No one said packing the backpack would be so difficult!

I hope we haven't been lulled into a false sense of traveller life having stayed with friends (Chris & Darren) but suspect that may be the case and from here on in things might get more tricky.

Chris met us fom the airport and from that moment on acted as our 'tour guide' as well as an amazing host. Her beautiful home had everything we needed including a pool and the gym. OK, I own up I never actually went in the gym but we had the pool to ourselves.

We saw so many amazing things the highlights of which I've tried to capture in photos. Unfortunately I've yet to work out how to link photos to what I'm writing, so this time you will have to click on the photo tab to the right of this page.

After 4 brilliant days we went for an unbelievable 'leaving meal' complete with a Bon Voyage cake - sooooo nice and unexpected.

[i]Leaving for Muscat, Oman tomorrow, next post from there xxxxxxxxxxx
[/i

Don't forget to subscribe to blog to receive updates

Posted by ClareRoach 10:59 Archived in United Arab Emirates Comments (0)

Leaving Day - Yikes!

Full of mixed emotions


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After months of planning, organising and talking of nothing else it is finally time to leave for Heathrow.

It was really strange packing up my 'new' flat - especially as some things never managed to get unpacked from moving in! Even harder was deciding what I really need to take with me for the next two years. Still think I've got too much and I'm sure after lugging my bag around one or two countries there will be a few abandoned 'must take' items along the way.

When it comes down to it though, it's all of you that I'd most like to take with me - Friday's leaving drinks and the many leaving lunches I've hugged my way through have really brought home how lucky I am to have so many incredible people in my life. Quite a few times I've stopped and thought - I'm leaving you all, why?? Not an easy question to answer but anyone who has lost someone special will understand that life can never be as it was and we all 'cope' with managing that gap in different ways - this is just my way. Yes it makes me sad, but I am also excited and incredibly fortunate to be able to embark on such an adventure.

I promise to take you all with me and provide regular updates and photos, so you will need to subscribe here if you want to receive them.

Christine Lewis, look out because DUBAI here we come (looking forward to seeing you) xx

Posted by ClareRoach 23:45 Comments (0)

Leaving Drinks Already!

Think it's a bit real now ........

This Friday will be the last time I'll see lots of you for around two years. That makes me really sad, but on the other hand I'm also excited and more than ready for the adventure to begin - plus terrified! So many emotions.

As many of you will know, I've also just come back from Peru having completed one of the biggest challenges of my life so Friday is also about celebrating that achievement (along with Dawn Blower and Dave Bebb who trekked with me)

Really on count down now as I start closing down my life - so much to do. I've never had so many 'To Do' lists and how I would have organised it whilst still working I have no idea, so good job I'm not. Juggle is now fitting the jobs in around lunching! At least some of the bigger ones are done though:

  • Visas sorted
  • Flat rented
  • Car sold
  • Phone contract cancelled

Shopping done but sure I can fit some more in!

That just leaves packing Into my tiny backpack - oh dear!

Posted by ClareRoach 10:59 Archived in Wales Comments (3)

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