Segway across New Zealand, Turkey and soon all over the world

Ok, this is an interesting one. Kevin Hey and a bunch of other guys now offer tours that allow you to explore New Zealand’s cities on a Segway. You remember the Segway Personal Transporter? Those contraptions that allow you to stand on them and move about on wheels.

Looks like Segways are catching on in Tourism. I came across a video that show Beach Resorts in Turkey using them (see the video on top). A friend of mine in the travel business in Goa tells me that a couple of resorts there are thinking of getting a few here too.

On my recent visit to Dubai, I happened to glimpse a chap tearing across a boulevard near my hotel on a segway, a sight which rang all the right bells in me. I would certainly like to have one, although driving one around in any Indian city is asking for serious trouble. In Bangalore, I will most likely disappear down a man-hole never to be heard of again. I can think of at least 3 people who would like that.  🙂


Bottoms Up

Recently saw a photo of how earth looks from space. The most interesting aspect of it was that it looked upside down to me. For all of us who have been brought up to believe that the north is ‘on top’, the idea that in reality, there is no ‘top’ for the little ball we call home, does not hold water.

But hold it. Far from being hogwash, it is true. All this ‘north is the top’ nonsense started with the world view of ancient European seafarers who used the North Star and the magnetic compass as critical aids in navigating the oceans.

Now with the south rising and the world rumoured to be getting flatter, cartography clearly needs a serious re-look. But, more importantly from my perspective, any serious traveller should carefully look at a map upside down before travelling. Starting from ‘crazy’ perspectives is a great way to get more from your travels. Here is a map to help you do that.


(map from :

And since Australia goes from ‘Down under’ to ‘Up above’, here are all my posts on Australia & NZ vacations. And just in case you are interested, here are posts on my ‘Dream Vacations’.

An Organised Tour for your next vacation?

(Patagonia, Chile)

Organised tours, by the very idea, are not my kind of thing. Remember the ads from Indian tour operators promising a ‘maharaj’ who will cook all your meals while you traipse along with your group of culturally challenged countrymen, through Rome, the Pyrenees, the Adriatic or whatever. Thanks, but no thanks.

And then I recently came upon a selection of tours that National Geographic calls “50 tours of a lifetime”. Cool stuff, actually. After spending an agonizing hour over all the 50 options, here is my ‘Dream 3’ list which are the three tours that I would certainly want to go on before I get too old to.. you know what.

ONE. Wandering across the Chilean Patagonia. ‘Off the beaten Path’, the operator of this trip has been at this sort of thing for some time now. For about 8000 US Dollars, you can wander for 11 days around the famed Patagonia, taking in mountains, fjords and open spaces all the while being in close contact with local gaucho families, sharing their hearth & food.

TWO. New Zealand with the kids. Butterfield & Robinson, the organisers promise that you will Bike past sheep farms and lakes, fruit plains and vineyards, Cruise through icebergs to the foot of a glacier, Join a local guide in a Continue reading

Whale watching in Australia

I had posted earlier about Whale watching in Byron bay, Australia. Recently came across a nice Google map-based feature on the Greenpeace site which helps you track actual whale movements in the oceans around Australia & New Zealand. Here is the link.

Here are the links to all my Australia posts as well as posts on Beach Vacations.