Wakayama & the Kii Peninsula

27 February 2020 | Places

A Wakayama University conference on Overtourism – Tourism in Troubled Times – took me to Japan and, on the side, a little exploration of the Kii Peninsula. That’s the finger of Japan pointing south from big city Osaka and cultural centre Kyoto, down to Cape Shionomisa...

View Post

A Tale for the Time Being

16 January 2014 | Media

Ruth Ozeki’s mysterious novel was a short list contender for the 2013 Booker Prize. The other 2013 contender I’ve read was Colum McCann’s TransAtlantic, which only made the long list. I was particularly interested in that one because of its connections with the first ...

View Post

Pitt Rivers Museum

22 June 2013 | Culture

Driving through Oxford, Maureen and I stopped to look at the Pitt Rivers Museum. It opened back in 1887 after Mr Pitt-Rivers donated his 20,000 item ethnographic collection to the university. Since then the collection has expanded to 300,000 items, all the sort of t...

View Post

The Inland Sea & 2 Other Great Travel Books

1 June 2013 | Culture

Way back in 1990 I worked on a very thorough revision of the Lonely Planet Japan guide and my regions included the Inland Sea, the island-dotted waters sandwiched between Honshu (Japan’s major island) to the north, Shikoku (the smallest of the four big islands) to the...

View Post

Is this the World’s Most Visitor Unfriendly Travel Card?

3 January 2013 | Transport

On 29 December 2012 Melbourne switched completely to its Myki travel card system. If you want to travel on Melbourne public transport you need a Myki card. I’ve had mine for three years and I compared it with my London Oyster card back in early 2010. I mentioned h...

View Post