The Friday Photo Collection
Every Friday for two years I've been posting one of my favourite travel photos from around the world. If you've missed a few or are just looking for some inspiration for your next trip, feel free to check them out!
Wandering along the rocky beach beside Lake Waikaremoana on this wet and blustery day, it was surprising how many photo opportunities could be found with just a break in the clouds, a piece of driftwood and a willing participant...
The coastline between Oamaru and Dunedin is a rugged, wind-swept sort of a place ... with a whole lot of mysterious boulders to amuse the tourists.
It's not just the buildings that make Napier a great place to hang out. Anywhere with palm trees growing in the central city is always going to get my vote.
I used to regularly walk along this street. It's almost unrecognisable now, just tangled piles of concrete and steel. The cleanup continues in Christchurch.
I must have driven past that road sign a hundred times without stopping This time there was no rush, so I left the highway and headed for Lake Rotoroa.
With the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix opening party in full swing, it was hard to even find a spot to take photos of the Petronas Towers. Still, I got there in the end.
The area around the Dart River, in New Zealand's South Island, is so striking that it looks like it should be a movie set. Maybe that's why it is.
Wharariki beach is about as far north as you can go on New Zealand's South Island. Waves and rocks combine to form a rugged, beautiful part of the country.
Farmers in New Zealand aren't big fans of thistles. Lucky I'm not a farmer, I guess, so I was able to appreciate the beauty of these flowering weeds.
You can only walk on Fox glacier if you're part of a guided tour. As an incentive, though, you do get to enjoy views like this one around every corner...
Sunrise comes late to Doubtful Sound. Loving the dark hills reflected in the flat water, I just stood and gazed out at the start of a brand new day.
The morning mist was rapidly burning off Lake Benmore as I passed and I just had to stop for a photo. Ten minutes earlier, I couldn't even see the hills...
With nearly 360 degree views as far as Mount Taranaki in one direction and the Kaikoura Range in the other, this was a viewpoint worth climbing to.
Hiking along the rocky shore of Lake Waikaremoana, battling the wind and rain, the clouds briefly parted to shine rays of light towards the opposite hills.
While the country's major tourist attractions are justifiably famous, it's the random things off the main roads that make New Zealand special.
A small moment of beauty, in a small country that's full of them.
The day I went to Wineglass Bay thee years ago was full of clouds and rain. This time around, it was nothing but bright sunshine and blue sky all day...
While wandering rather aimlessly around Hobart’s main port area earlier this week, I came across these two perfectly placed birds gazing out across the water towards the approaching rain clouds.
On New Year's Eve I went for a walk around Melbourne for hours, occasionally stopping for a drink at riverside bars but generally just enjoying wandering around my old haunts. I had nowhere in particular to be at that time, in that place, on that beautifully sunny day, and that was just how things needed to be...
Bumping our way onboard, we jumped off the bikes and brushed the road dust from our faces. Until then I hadn't even noticed the sunset happening out over the river.
I've seen a lot of sunsets over the years, but this one at Echo Point in the Blue Mountains a few days ago has to rate right up there with the best of them.
Even though Frankfurt isn't usually renowned for the beauty of its architecture or strong arts scene, I actually quite liked the large German city.
Every time I see a photo from Plitvice Lakes, I am struck by two related things. One, the place is seriously beautiful. Two, the water is so clear that it plays tricks with the eyes.
What better reintroduction to the awesomeness of Saigon than jumping on the back of some friends' motorbikes and heading straight for Snail Street?
The ancient city of Sukhothai, in the central north of Thailand, is a ruin-lovers paradise - even if the big Buddha statue does follow you with its eyes...
In celebration of the fact that in two weeks I'll be just about to embark on an epic scooter road trip through Vietnam's Mekong Delta, I present: these melons.
Koh Rong is absolutely stunning. If paradise had ten million sandflies and broken flip-flops washed up on the shore I’m pretty sure it would look like this.
While the backpacker ghetto of Sihanoukville had little to get excited about, the walk there from Otres beach was worth the effort. There were even cows...
This public art in Ljubljana was quirky and fun. I'm guessing that the faces are supposed to represent famous Hollywood actors, but really I've got no idea.
Spending two weeks on a yacht off the coast of Turkey wasn't all about sunbathing, sailing and snorkelling. Well, it was - but there was a serious side too.
I walked through the enormous entrance doors and just stood and gaped. As far as I’m concerned, the Ayasofya is one of the wonders of the world. Go there, now.
Pamukkale's travertine terraces are a remarkable sight. Water flows everywhere, depositing calcium as it has for millennia along the bright white hillside.
It had been a long day’s sailing by the time we finally moored in Kalkan, on Turkey’s southern coast. I guess the magnificent sunset kinda made up for it.
ANZAC, British and Turkish troops died by the thousands during the Gallipoli campaign in World War One. So many unnecessary deaths in a beautiful part of the world.
The Tsarevets fortress is one of the things that Veliko Tarnovo is famous for, and when I saw it, it wasn't hard to see why. This thing is seriously huge.
I'm off sailing again, this time around the Turkish coast for two weeks. No blogging, no social media, no online world. But there will be plenty of beers...
Sighisoara's impressive citadel is not the only game in town. Cast your eyes across the river and you'll spot this dazzling white church, for instance...
Istanbul, in all its beautiful, chaotic wonderfulness, is now officially one of my favourite cities in the world. Moments like this are just one of the reasons why.
The small town of Sighisoara in Romania is famous for its remarkable medieval citadel. For some reason the city hall impressed me most of all.
Sarajevo. For anyone old enough to have been paying attention during the nightly news back in the early nineties, the name has a poignant ring.
The town of Mostar is full of contrasts - rivers and ruins, coffees and cemeteries, minarets and crosses. It's a complicated, beautiful place.
Eger's cathedral - one of the biggest in Hungary – was impressive from the outside, but it was the view above my head that really astonished..
Huge black plumes almost blotted out the sun in Montana, the choking smell of wood smoke coming in through every tiny gap in the car.
Screeching to a halt in the roadside dust enroute to Seattle, we snapped photos of these wind turbines as the clouds continued to build.
Closed by snow for much of the year, the Going-to-the-Sun Road cuts right through the heart of Glacier National Park. I've never driven a road like it.
Silhouetted against the afternoon sun, these visitors to Yellowstone National Park barely seemed to notice the steam billowing around them.
I'd heard that Montana was referred to as Big Sky Country, but I've gotta say that Wyoming has a pretty decent shot at that title too...
Walking back from dinner in Ljubljana one night, the warm glow of the Centromerkur department store in the main square stopped me in my tracks.
A silly photo this week, taken on my amazing hot air balloon ride over Lake Bled recently. You can have a lot of fun with tilt-shift...
While wandering around a medieval castle perched high above San Sebastian, I came across this shiny motorcycle parked incongruously outside.
I spent this week visiting friends in La Coruna. What impressed me most? The expansive views and glorious sunsets.
Perched atop an overpass at Melbourne's Southern Cross station, I reached for my new camera and decided it was time to start playing around.
Stepping inside the grounds of the Grand Palace in Phnom Penh is a strange, almost surreal experience compared to the rest of the city.
The statues lining the road to Angkor Thom were fascinating, but to be honest I was more interested in jumping in the river behind them...
Wandering along the main road in Ubud there were several things that posed a danger for the unwary tourist, but none more so than the yetis.
Waking up early one morning on Koh Yao Noi to the usual symphony of wildlife outside my window, I pulled back the curtain to see ... this.
I don't remember much of my first few days in Alicante, but apparently I did do at least some sightseeing - including this great Roman aqueduct.
It's several signs, in fact, inside this beachside bar in Nai Yang. Build it and they will come, apparently.
A large pile of bleached driftwood stretching off into the distance was the highlight of this windswept beach on Vancouver Island.
What a difference half an hour made to the views in Bali...
Originally home to Australia’s most infamous penal colony, Tasmania's Port Arthur now attracts much more willing visitors.
There were plenty of punts on the river in Cambridge this fine summer's day but not a single punter to be found. Yes, I'm sorry for the terrible pun.
In a city as obsessed with bicycles as Amsterdam, it wasn't a surprise to find that someone remembered that they need to keep cosy too...
We could put it off no longer. It was just before 8am, we were about to leave Chiang Dao, and it was bloody freezing.
On a day trip from Zurich to Appenzell a straight piece of road seemed near impossible to find as our coach wound slowly through the hills.
Not much happens in a hurry on Don Khon. Even the fish couldn't be bothered showing up - they were probably having a nap like everybody else.
Lake Ohau in New Zealand's South Island is a temperamental body of water. Luckily this day was one of the calm ones, I guess.
Breakfast with the orangutans was the highlight of a day at the Singapore Zoo, though I'm not sure who was watching who as we all stuffed down bananas.
This washed out, grainy photo is the first picture I took when I started my travels nearly 14 years ago. Yes, I'm that old.
Of all the things I love about Amsterdam I think it's the canals that grab me the most. Or is it the weather?
Walking along a deserted beach on Vancouver Island I spotted hundreds of shellfish clinging to every available spot on an overhanging rock.
Seeing these fingers of sunlight poking through the clouds near Chau Doc in Vietnam made the trip up Sam "mountain" more than worthwhile.
Climbing three steep layers of weathered steps to the top of Pre Rup in the afternoon heat to get this view? Totally worth it.
Sydney has plenty of icons. Beaches, the harbour, a big bridge and a very distinctive opera house. You'd never mistake where you were in the world, that's for sure.
Checking out the view from the hills surrounding Pai in northern Thailand, this dirt track trailed steeply off into the distance.
Beauty, burners and not enough sleep at the 2011 Thailand International Balloon Festival in Chiang Mai.
I'm trying something a bit different with the Friday photo this week - a panoramic view of the north-western city walls in my current home of Chiang Mai.
When in doubt, just lean a wagon wheel up against the fence. Problem solved.
The giant fir trees in Vancouver Island's Cathedral Grove are not the only highlights. There are also disgusting looking mushrooms, for instance.
For me there's one thing that sums up Melbourne at least as well as the traditional icons. Not trams, coffee or the MCG. Nope, it's street art.
Near the top of Bangkok's Golden Mountain stand these large weather-stained bells. The sound they made could be heard up and down the entire hill...
One of the things I loved about Washington DC was how easy it was to get away from the frenzy of the city into a little slice of tranquillity.
Is it just me, or does this huge piece of public art in Vancouver's Olympic Village kinda freak you out as well?
Remnants of the old protective walls line the moat that forms a square around Chiang Mai's Old City. I can't wait to move back there next month...
In the interests of photographic integrity I present a new and exciting option: the Space Needle - from below. Don't forget, you saw it here first...
So this is summer in San Francisco? I think I'll take ... well ... any other option, thanks.
You can tell it’s been a while since I was last sitting on a beach with the sand between my toes. Is it any wonder that I start to dream?
I remember standing at that little viewpoint with the sun on my back and a smile on my face, looking at an idyllic scene from the little country I called home.
I absolutely loved my time in Copenhagen, and this picture always takes me straight back there...
I love taking road trips in Australia. They really serve to remind you just how bloody enormous this country actually is...
Continuing my tradition of great wildlife shots taken by somebody else, this week's shot is of Simba the Lion. Perhaps.
Continuing on with my theme of abysmal puns in Friday photos I present this picture of a large chunk of limestone somewhere near Phuket.
Cheetah reach speeds of over 100km/h as they hunt down their prey. That doesn't help much, of course, when you don't know which way it went...
Tasmania's Cradle Mountain features in every tourist brochure, and with good reason.
This slippery pier overlooks Lake Rotoroa, in the Nelson Lakes district of New Zealand's South Island. And lots of sandflies.
While enjoying a great cycle tour around some of the many highlights of Vancouver last month, these giant bronze statues caught my eye. Funny that.
I grew up in a country that was just packed with ... nature. Finding somewhere else that felt the same wasn't something that I ever expected to do.
This is the kind of evening commute I reckon I could handle - a fisherman returning home in the last of the setting sun in Tofino on Vancouver Island.
I'm just going to put it out there, I love Vancouver Island. The scenery, the views, the atmosphere ... it's just a beautiful part of the world.
Walking up the path towards the holocaust memorial wall in Portland I noticed a few items strewn around in my way...
Because, you know, apparently when you're a seagull in the Whitsunday Islands in Australia it's just too much effort to fly.
Catching a lift on the dinghy behind a yacht, however? It would seem that's a much better idea.
I'm not a winter person - I'll take sunshine over snowfields any day. Something like this little island in the Philippines would do nicely right now.
The lighthouse at Cape Reinga, at the top of New Zealand's North Island, marks one beautiful end of a beautiful country.
An unexpected highlight of a bike trip to Versailles was the immaculately sculpted gardens surrounding the main buildings. They were simply stunning.
Be careful when you're walking around the Boston Public Garden. You might just get run down by a family of ducks...
As the light disappeared over Halong Bay I snapped a few last photos, including this one of a Buddhist temple perched high on a rocky outcrop in the middle of the bay
If there is a greater monument to the futility of war than this gravesite and the surrounding battlefields in Belgium, I haven't found it yet.
I typically don't really care too much about the time when I'm travelling unless I've got a plane to catch or am meeting someone for a beer. Still, it's good to know that if you're ever wandering around Wat Phnom in Cambodia's capital city, finding your watch will be the least of your concerns...
I'm not one to celebrate war at all, but regardless Iwo Jima is one hell of an impressive piece of art.
I was getting a bit lost when trying to find the Eiffel Tower while in Paris last year, so I flagged down this dude on a flying horse to ask which way I should go. He soon pointed me in the right direction.
Sometimes in life, the simplest pleasures really are the best.
Hue is one of those places that doesn't seem to have much going for it. Well, other than the bloody great Imperial Palace in the middle of the city.
Look closely at the picture above Do you notice anything ... well ... missing? Like, say for example, most of the apostles?
With Blog4NZ coming up soon it seemed only appropriate to feature a photo from close to my devastated home town of Christchurch. Looking over Banks Peninsula towards the historic little town of Akaroa, this shot was taken from just beside the Hilltop Tavern - the perfect place to stop for a quiet beer enroute from Christchurch.
The most sobering day of my six months on the road last year was undoubtedly my time in the Killing Fields and at the Genocide Museum in the Cambodian capital of Phonm Penh.
The photos you normally see of the area around Wineglass Bay in Tasmania look like something out of a tourist brochure. Often, in fact, they are something out of a tourist brochure. Blue skies, white sand, clear water, the lot. Not on the day I was there, however.
Mistaking the native marsupial quokka for a large rat, a Dutch sea captain named this small island off the coast of Western Australia 'Rattenest' back in the 17th century. Modern day Rottnest Island is a gorgeous place with no cars, great weather and a chilled out vibe. And not a rat in sight.
Watching cheetah hunt in the wild is a totally incredible experience.
Running into this guy taking his water buffalo for a walk was a highlight of an impromptu bike tour on the outskirts of Hoi An.
Pictures of the Grand Canyon just hadn't prepared me for this mind-blowing, monumental hole in the ground.
One of the things that never fails to amuse me about living in Australia is the highly imaginative place names. The Blue Lake is one of them.
This little fishing boat on the edge of the moat surrounding the temples of Angkor Wat was in a similar state of repair to the buildings themselves.
When a rhino wants to cross the road in front of you, you don't ask too many questions...
This curious little guy was hanging out in a tree in Penang's Botanic Gardens.
Spider webs. Everywhere.
A rather awesome sunset.
Gorgeous view out over the fields, towards the hazy hills in the distance.
Hundreds upon hundreds of well-lit bugs.
Deep fried crickets, crowds of line dancers and a well dressed sheep. What more could you ask for?
A water-buffalo-powered taxi on the beach in Sabang.
Gazing at views like this for five days wasn’t the worst time I’ve had in my life.
I have a feeling this boat isn’t about to make a quick getaway anytime soon…
A lone fisherman casting his net in the fading light as he slowly drifted along the shoreline.
Ypres is a beautiful little town in Belgium, with flowing canals, medieval cathedrals and old city walls. Except it isn't.
Rain on the horizon near Angkor Wat.
Walking in the Cradle Mountain national park in central Tasmania.
Checking out the skulls in the famous Paris catacombs.
Amsterdam is a beautiful city all through the year, but when the sun is shining the place just sparkles.
The island of Ithaca off the west coast of the Greek mainland is one of my favourite places in the world.
The medieval city gates of Torres de Serranos loom over Valencia’s old town.
These kayakers didn’t seem to mind the cold as they glided underneath the bridge I was standing on.
View over the water back towards the Perth central business district.
The Tad Fan waterfall in Southern Laos is believed to be one of the tallest in the country.
Farming methods and technology haven’t changed much here in a long time…
In between checking out the sights, sounds and smells of the street, I took a minute to look up.
If you’re a Tomb Raider fan, Ta Prohm is the one temple in the Angkor complex that you just can’t miss.
There wasn’t much more than driftwood and footprints on this beach on the Coromandel peninsula.
Out the back of the Cantonese Assembly Hall in Hoi An, Vietnam.
A view of downtown Hong Kong.
I guess the title says it all...
You’d never believe that this beautiful spot is only a few miles from downtown Washington DC.
Juxtaposition of the old and the new on Boylston St in Boston.
This gorgeous little village sits at the end of a small peninsula on the island of Kefalonia.
Colourful fishing boats on the river, looking towards the Old Town in Hoi An.
Coastal Redwoods in the Redwood National and State Parks, northern California.
The Roman arena in Pula, Croatia, lit up at night for all to see.
Sunrise through the branches in Phinda game reserve, northern South Africa.
Sunset from the back of a yacht in Butterfly Bay, Hook Island.
View of the Space Needle from Volunteer Park in Seattle, Washington.
Taken in the Catlins area at the bottom of the South Island of New Zealand.