Author Archive for Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson has worked in the travel industry for approximately 20 years and, more specifically, in the online sector since the very earliest days of the WWW.

Photograph of the week: The historical centre of Ghent, Belgium

Photograph of the week: The historical centre of Ghent, Belgium

Seen here is the historical centre of Ghent, with the famous Saint Nicholas’ Church and Belfry of Ghent in the distance. Ghent is one of the most beautiful destinations in Belgium and the city comes complete with stunning old architecture, fantastic and romantic restaurants, and plenty of historic places to visit. This particular view was […]

virtual private network VPN abroad

How to have secure, unrestricted internet access abroad

Having spent time in China, I can tell you that being unprepared for intermittent internet access was rather frustrating. Although China is undoubtedly among the world’s most censored countries when it comes to internet access, there are a number of others where it is complicated also. Apart from restricted internet access, online security is a […]

5 of the UK's most unique 5-star properties

5 of the UK’s most unique 5-star properties

Tired of the same old hotels and accommodation? Unbeknown to many, the UK is home to a huge selection of self-catering properties (or vacation rentals to those of you in the US or Down Under), many of which are in a league of their own when it comes down to quality. Cottage agency Sykes Cottages, […]

Photograph of the week: An incredible dive site in Tulum, Mexico

Photograph of the week: An incredible dive site in Tulum, Mexico

A cenote is a pit or sinkhole resulting from the collapse of the limestone bedrock to expose the groundwater below. The Mayans believed the cenotes to be sacred entrances to the underworld. They provide access to the underwater caves and caverns that are the main diving attraction in the Yucatan Penisula, Mexico. One of the […]

How to automatically backup your phone every time you charge it

How to automatically backup your phone every time you charge it

Backing up your phone can be a bit of a chore sometimes, especially as you travel. You have to fire up your laptop, connect your phone, launch the relevant software and wait. Imagine, though, if you could back up a phone – be it Android or iPhone – without the need for a laptop at […]

Short stay: Bette Davis Suite, Hotel Maria Cristina, San Sebastian, Spain

Short stay: Bette Davis Suite, Hotel Maria Cristina, San Sebastian, Spain

The elegant Hotel Maria Cristina is a member of the Luxury Collection, has 136 rooms and was designed by Charles Mewès – a French architect who was also behind the Ritz hotels in both Paris and Madrid. Since its opening in 1912 it has been a firm favourite with celebrities and international high society and, […]

Photograph of the week: The Treasury, Petra, Jordan

Photograph of the week: The Treasury, Petra, Jordan

Petra is a city in Jordan that is cut into the very rock itself. This UNESCO area, founded as early as 312BC, is known as, “a rose-red city half as old as time”. A narrow gorge called The Siq leads you over 1 km through the rock until it opens up to this building called […]

Photograph of the week: Sunrise at Glacier Point, Yosemite

Photograph of the week: Sunrise at Glacier Point, Yosemite

Before leaving Yosemite, Andrew Ling wanted to see the sunrise from Glacier Point one last time. For the first time during his three day stay, the valley was free from the nearby wildfire smoke. The sun had just risen above the mountains, shining between the cliff and Half Dome. He saw these people watching the […]

10 great reasons to visit Santona, Cantabria, Spain

10 great reasons to visit Santona, Cantabria, Spain

Nestled approximately midway between Santander and Bilbao in the province of Cantabria, the town of Santoña is a fishing port that has an interesting history but is perhaps best known today as a holiday destination in the Summer months and for its year-round fishing trade. Here are 10 great reasons why you should visit. 1. […]

Short stay: Hotel Juan de la Cosa, Santona, Cantabria, Spain

Short stay: Hotel Juan de la Cosa, Santona, Cantabria, Spain

Hotel Juan de la Cosa is an upscale hotel situated on the unspoiled, mile-long Playa de Berria on the outskirts of Santoña in Northern Spain’s Cantabria region. Set in its own gardens, the hotel is situated roughly midway between Santander and Bilbao. The welcome We arrived in the late afternoon, having attended a sailing event […]

Short stay: 4-bedroom apartment, Isla Playa, Cantabria, Spain

Short stay: 4-bedroom apartment, Isla Playa, Cantabria, Spain

Our first stay on our trip to Cantabria in Northern Spain was at a self-catering apartment in the Spanish resort of Isla Playa, just a 45 minute drive to the east of Santander, organised through HomeAway UK. This is a largely Spanish resort with two distinct areas of beach and a number of restaurants, cafés […]

Thank you for the invitation to your event but...

Thank you for the invitation to your event but…

Every day I get invited to some travel-related event or other. Just today, for example, I’ve been asked to afternoon tea to hear about a resort in Antigua, had the pleasure of my company requested for a VIP event for a members-only luxury airline, received an invitation for a drinks evening for a luxury apartment […]

Why Shady Owl Sunglasses could be the next big thing in sustainable fashion

Why Shady Owl Sunglasses could be the next big thing in sustainable fashion

Travelers are now being offered a positive alternative choice when shopping for sunglasses thanks to a family-run Florida company with unique designs and a heart to donate proceeds from every sale to supporting owl rehabilitation. Let’s face it, sunglasses are fashionable and practical. They’re an essential part of our travel uniform and, for anyone blessed […]

Photograph of the week: Scuba diving in Devil's Den

Photograph of the week: Scuba diving in Devil’s Den

Florida is mostly known for its sandy beaches and tropical diving. However, scuba diving addicts know that Florida best underwater secrets lie north of Orlando, where a network of crystal-clear water springs can be dived all year long. The most amazing of all is called the Devil’s Den. The spring of Williston, FL, is a […]

From chaos to calm: how our latest trip nearly didn't happen

From chaos to calm: how our latest trip nearly didn’t happen

It started with a bang. A very loud bang. And it didn’t take us long to realise what had happened. The boat trailer that we were towing had become detached from our car and one of the boats on it had come straight through our rear windscreen. Panic set in. We were due to catch […]

Photograph of the week: Monkey at Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe

Photograph of the week: Monkey at Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe

Mana Pools National Park in Zimbabwe is considered to be one of the last truly wild places in Africa, and the best way to see animals here is on foot. Beth Norton was walking in a golden-hued forest when her attention was grabbed, not by one of the resident lions or elephants, but to a […]

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