Nov
19

Bike trip: small villages, great people

posted on November 19th 2014 in Travel with 0 Comments

With a bike ($1 to rent it!) I have gone on an adventure in the surroundings and not turistic areas of Hoi An. The people living in these areas is very poor, mostly farmers, and they are very happy to share some time with the few Westeners that appear on their door.

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Nov
18

The monsoon is here

posted on November 18th 2014 in Travel with 0 Comments

Today I headed South. Travelling through coastal rice paddles, traversing the spectacularly mountainous Hai Van Pass and visiting China Beach, I got to Hoi An. And so the monsoon did.

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Nov
16

15% of the Imperial Citadel in Hue

posted on November 16th 2014 in Travel with 0 Comments

Only 15% of the Imperial Citadel in Hue, former imperial capital of Vietnam, was not destroyed during the Vietnam War’s Tet Offensive, but the foliage-coverage ruins are still atmospheric and the holes left by bombs give an idea of the destruction this country suffered during the war.

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Nov
15

Street life in Hanoi

posted on November 15th 2014 in Travel with 0 Comments

Controled chaos. That would be my summary in two words of Hanoi. Now I can understand why the government has instaured the 2 children per family… It is crazily crowded! Motorbikes everywhere, street vendors selling from cat meat to boiled bamboo, and noise. Lots of it. They seem to have a particular mechanism to note they are going to change direction, pass you or tell you to cross. And it is always using the claxon.

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Nov
13

Quick update from Hanoi

posted on November 13th 2014 in Travel with 0 Comments

Finally in Hanoi! This is a snapshot taken from the window of my hotel, where is easy to see the aerial cable work so common here to feed with electricity the houses and stores in that part of the street.

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Nov
11

Find me in South East Asia!

posted on November 11th 2014 in Travel with 2 Comments

Time to make true one of my life dreams: to visit South East Asia (feeling very sorry because I cannot do it to Lao, but thinking that will be the reason to come back in the future) and to discover the culture of three very different countries with an unique past.

The adventure will start with a 13 hours flight that will take me from UK to China. When I´ll get to Hong Kong I´ll take another flight (this one “only” 3 hours) that will bring me finally to Vietnam.

The arrival to Hanoi will be during the night, so I´ll not have time to see more than the surroundings of the hotel and just the time to prepare everything to go on the road the day after.

Momento de cumplir uno de mis sueños: visitar el Sudeste Asiático (con el pesar de no poder visitar Laos, pero razón para volver en otro momento) y descubrir la cultura de tres países muy distintos con un pasado único.

La aventura comenzará con un vuelo directo de 13 horas que une Inglaterra y China. Al llegar a Hong Kong cogeré otro vuelo (éste de “sólo” 3 horas) que me llevará finalmente a Vietnam.

La llegada a Hanoi será prácticamente de noche, apenas dejándome tiempo de ver más allá de los alrededores del hotel y de preparar todo para poner pies en polvorosa al día siguiente, cuando la aventura realmente dará comienzo.

Vietnam: Hanoi and Halong Bay

From Hanoi I´ll take a bus (approx. 4 hours) that will take me to Halong Bay, World Heritage site. Halong Bay is a breathtaking secluded harbour with 2,000 limestone islands rising from the emerald waters of Bac Bo Gulf. One of Vietnam’s most scenic regions, this area of about 1,500 sq km is dotted with innumerable beaches and grottos, created over thousands of years by waves and wind.

I´ll spend two days on a boat, having the chance to swim in the famed South China Sea (known locally as the East Sea), as well as to explore caves filled with stunning stalactites and stalagmites, to spend the night on board, beneath a night sky alive with stars, to then come back the day after to land.

A 3.5 hours bus will take me to Hanoi train station, where I´ll be taking a night train in which I´ll spend the night while traveling to Hue.

Desde Hanoi cogeré un autobús (aproximadamente 4 horas) que me dejará en la Bahía de Halong (Patrimonio de la Humanidad). Es una bahía con más de 2.000 islas que emergen de las esmeraldas aguas del Golfo Bac Bo. Uno de los lugares más fotografiados de Vietnam, este área de 1.500 km cuadrados está dotada de innumerables playas y grutas, creadas a lo largo de miles de años por las olas y el viento.

Estaré dos días en un barco, teniendo oportunidad de nadar en el famoso Mar del Sur de China (allí conocido como Mar del Este),así como de explorar cuevas con estalactitas y estalagmitas, pasar la noche a bordo bajo un cielo estrellado, para al día siguiente volver a tierra firme.

Un viaje de unas 3 horas y media en autobús me dejará en la estación de trenes de Hanoi, donde cogeré un tren nocturno en el que pasaré la noche viajando hasta llegar a Hue.

Vietnam: Night train from Hanoi to Hue

I will stay 2 days in Hue, former imperial capital of Vietnam. I will start the visit of Hue on the back of a motorbike to visit the Imperial Citadel, which includes the Forbidden Purple City. The latter was almost totally destroyed during the Vietnam War’s Tet Offensive, and the gaping holes left by bombs give an idea of the destruction wreaked upon the country during the war. Next is Thien Mu Pagoda, considered by many to be the unofficial symbol of Hue. It’s an active Buddhist monastery with its origins dating back to 1601. I will also go to have a look to Dong Ba Market.

I will enjoy a dragon boat cruise on the Perfume River before getting back on the motorbike and riding to the royal tomb of Emperor Tu Duc.

After all, I will head South, traveling along the coast line by bus for around 4 or 5 hours, with a brief visit to the China Beach (known officially as My Khe Beach).

Estaré 2 días en Hue, antigua capital imperial de Vietnam. Comenzaré la visita montando en moto para llegar a la Ciudadela Imperial, donde está la Ciudad Prohibida Morada. Ésta fue prácticamente destruida durante la ofensiva Tet de la Guerra de Vietnam, y los agujeros dejados por las bombas dan una idea de la destrucción del país durante la guerra. Lo siguiente será la Pagoda Thien Mu, considerada por muchos el símbolo de Hue. Es un monaterio budista en activo que data de 1601. También iré al Mercado de Dong Ba.

Después haré un pequeño viaje en barco por el Río Perfume, antes de volver a coger la moto para ir a ver la tumba real del Emperador Tu Duc.

Lo siguiente será viajar hacia el sur, a lo largo de la costa, con una breve parada en la Playa China (conocida oficialmente como My Khe Beach), en un viaje de 4 ó 5 horas en autobús.

Vietnam: Hue to Hoi An

The next couple of days will be to visit Hoi An. Recently declared a World Heritage site, Hoi An is being beautifully restored and preserved. Known as Faifo to early western traders, it was one of South-East Asia’s major international ports during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.

From Hoi An I´ll take an internal flight to get to Ho Chi Minh City (1 hour).

En Hoi An pasaré otros dos días. Hoi An, recientemente proclamado Patrimonio de la Humanidad, Hoi An está siendo restaurada. Conocida como Faifo por los comerciantes del lejano Oriente, fue uno de los mayores puertos internacionales en los siglos XVII, XVIII y XIX.

Desde Hoi An tendré que coger un avión para llegar a Ho Chi Minh City (1 hora de viaje).

Vietnam: Internal flight from Hoi An …

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Nov
07

My new website is live!

posted on November 7th 2014 in Me with 0 Comments

If you have been here before, you will see that it’s had a little bit of redesign. The portfolio is now easier to watch and the whole website is easier to navigate. Images are bigger and everything looks smarter.

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Nov
06

Downtown Divas: portraits of Russian sex workers in designer clothing (NSFW)

posted on November 6th 2014 in Photography & Social with 0 Comments

For Downtown Divas, artists Loral Amir and Gigi Ben Artzi constructed studio portraits of heroin-addicted Russian prostitutes living in a confidential city. Adorning their subjects in clothing by brands like Miu Miu, Louis Vuitton, and Alexander Wang, Amir and Artzi remove them from the context of their daily lives, and place them, sometimes uncomfortably, within the realm of high fashion.

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