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Today's Food


Travel quotes


It was 2pm - too early for wine but not for chocolate. 
Andrea Hurst, Always with You


Those who do not travel, do not know the value of people. – Moorish proverb




Find out what's on today HERE all around the world...



World National Days


Bosnia and Herzegovina 9  January Serbian Republic Day celebrate in Republika Srpska

Dining here....

Trivia: With an area of 1,400 hectares, the Perućica forest has many trees that are 300 years old, and the forest's vintage is stated to be 20,000 years. In some places the forest growth is almost impregnable. 



Northern Mariana Islands, United States 8 January (Commonwealth Day, the constitutional government takes office 1978)

What is on the menu here?

Trivia: Archeological evidence reveals that rice has been cultivated in the Marianas since prehistoric times.



Italy, January 1 (1948)

Dining in Italy....

Trivia: Italians suffer more earthquakes than any other Europeans. In 1693, an estimated 100,000 people died in an earthquake in Sicily. The most deadly recent quake in Italy occurred in Naples in 1980, killing 3,000 people. More....



Cuba 1 January (Liberation Day, Fidel Castro takes power in 1959 (and Spanish rule ends 1899))

The food of Cuba....

Trivia: There are no animals or plants in Cuba that are poisonous or lethal to humans. More....



Haiti 1 January (Declaration of independence from France 1804)

On the Haitian table...

Trivia: The gourd plant has always been important to Haiti. The Haitian currency is called “gourdes”, and dates back to 1807 when President Christophe made gourds the base of the national currency. More…..



Sudan 1 January  (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom and the Egyptian Republic 1956)

The food of The Sudan...

Trivia: The capital of Sudan, Khartoum, means elephant trunk in Arabic, which refers to the large bend in the Nile River that it makes as it flows north from the city. More…






How safe is your destination?

BEFORE you travel - check out the travel advisories for the countries you plan to visit. 

Smart Traveller....



DUE TO THE COVID-19 virus  many of the world's countries have closed borders and ceased tourism until it is safe to travel again. 


Keep in touch with

COVID-19 data

Go to this site....



Do you need a visa?

Many countries require visitors to have a visa - others do not.

Australian travellers -

Find out what you need.....



Everybody's talking...


what languages do local people speak in each of the world's countries?



What a world!

Where have we visited? 





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Here's one for your next dinner party...did you know that cacti can save animals??

TRUE or FALSEFind out which it is HERE...





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Read this book...



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Have a laugh....



Rivers - lifeblood of Australia

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If you would like to know the secrets of many countries...


...visit this page



Would you like to get your 'brand' across and have personal success?

This book could be the answer....



Before your next trip... study the questions (and answers) in this book. 

You'll find answers to many things you might see and eat.

Also check this page out.....



Expect the unexpected with this fascinating 'atlas'.

Make discoveries worldwide....



Fun to read - and thought-provoking - this book makes an ideal gift.

Read the review...



Have you ever wondered if your town in Australia has hidden secrets in its history?

This book will answer your questions...



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This book comes to your rescue....


If eating has become painful, and food feels more like your enemy....

This book may help....




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Raw and random, this is probably not the France you know.

A fascinating glimpse of another side of the country.



Trivia buffs - this book is for you.

Especially if you love to travel...



If you love a bit of mystery and wackiness with your travel, this book is for you.

Find out all about it....



Do you need some travel ideas? Here are 1001 historic sites to visit.

Start planning now...





Window on Western Australia's south-west corner

Please join us on this fascinating trip...

Two oceans wash the coastline along this 'knobbly' part of south-west Western Australia. To arrive here you need to cross Australia, and realise too that Antarctica is the next stop south!

But, if you do come here, you won't be disappointed, as there is so much on offer.

So, what brings visitors here?

Wine-lovers recognise the Margaret River region for its fine wines. Take note of the name at the top of this signpost. You will bump into Tom Cullity a little later!


Keen surfers can't wait to try the 'breaks'.

Others come for the dining and local produce...

...while glorious spring attracts wildflower lovers.

Are you getting curious? Come along for a sneak peek to see what else this remote part of Australia has to offer.


So, let's go first to busy Bunbury

There's history in this area - like Bunbury's gracious Rose Hotel complete with a banner announcing that it is the town's 'oldest hotel' which has been restored and is now also the 'newest'. (Well, it was when we visited, pre-Covid, anyway!)

Actually Bunbury is a city with a population of around 75,000. A British settlement was established here in 1841, although the indigenous Noongar people had been in the area for many thousands of years prior to this.

For those heading south from WA's capital, Perth, Bunbury is an easy two-hour drive away, on the coastal Forrest Highway. It is an ideal place to take a break, for there is plenty to see and do.

There is a buzz to Bunbury, and you see it best in cafes like this....

Benesse would fit well in any city worldwide.

Like most Australian towns and cities, 'pub grub' is also popular, and as Bunbury is coastal, the range of seafood on offer is especially good.

The Leschenault Estuary's natural harbour made this an ideal location for a port. It's easy to overlook that while many other industries now make this a tourism drawcard, Bunbury's primary purpose for much of the state's early years was shipping.

Marlston Tower overlooks Geographe Bay and it is 'only' 289 steps to reach the top for a panoramic view of the bay, the city and its environs.

This lighthouse, looking out onto the Indian Ocean is the most recent of several that have protected ships in the area for over 150 years.

Bunbury is also the gateway to many other fascinating things to do and experience before you enter the jigsaw-shaped land to the south.



Busselton ~ where history comes alive

Less than half an hour's drive south of Bunbury, you discover that history is everywhere. It is a must-do to visit the remarkable 1.8 kilometre-long Busselton Jetty. Originally opened in 1865, it was severely damaged by a cyclone in 1978, and fire in 1999, and was finally rebuilt and completed in 2011.

The sheltered beaches on either side of the jetty draw families, photographers and fishing enthusiasts, and of course the heritage train just tops off the experience. 

An added attraction - the Underwater Observatory - awaits at the far end of the jetty.

There are many fishing spots around the bay. Find out more here...

Nearby, just south of the jetty, these popular ocean baths are equipped with a shark and stinger swim net. It is not all about swimming or fishing, though. Many come simply to enjoy the sunset and take photographs. 

Our dinner that night was at The Equinox just to the left of the picture (above) a delightful restaurant overlooking this beach.

The next day we had brunch here, at one of the shining stars in Busselton's dining scene. This was before The Goose was very badly damaged by fire in 2021. With a premier position overlooking the bay and the jetty, and with its fine food and service, it drew many tourists.

The word is that The Goose will be rebuilt, and you may keep up-to-date on its progress here... Meanwhile a sister business is operating in the town.


The next day....

Having stayed overnight in Busselton, we were up early to see one of the drawcards.

What's more, a cruise ship was anchored off-shore, and the stall owners had high hopes of making some good sales of souvenirs to its passengers.

With a sunny day, and a friendly welcome like this, it is no doubt that the people from the ship would have fallen in love with this small town.

Busselton is justly proud of its long history in Australia. When you consider that the Swan River Colony, just up the river from where Perth stands today was established in 1829 - before other states: South Australia, Northern Territory and Queensland came into being - then this early and remote settlement was quite special.

The locals think so too, and are keen to honour their beginnings. This beautiful statue brings alive the difficulty that early settlers and sailors had in this remote colony. Here, the heavily pregnant wife of a whaler is waiting, alone, perhaps uneasy about giving birth in this foreign land, or even wondering if her husband will return safely.

You can see this piece in Queen Street in the cultural precinct.


We met this polite fellow (actually, he's the founder of Busselton, John Garrett Bussell) on the corner of Queen Street and Marine Terrace. His statue is part of the town's Settlement Art Project.


Just because something is old, there is no reason to send it to landfill. At least that seems to be the feeling of Busseltonians who have saved this upright piano and put it on a veranda in the square with a special message for children - and other wannabe musicians.

As always, it was too soon - but we had to leave this lovely town and head further south.



Cow town Cowaramup

It is not often than you find a main street filled with cows!

While today's visitors to the area may be drawn by vineyards and beaches, in the 1920s land was made available to settlers to help develop a dairy industry in the area. 

You could be excused for then concluding that the town's name was chosen because of the dairy cows. However it comes from the indigenous name for a small brilliantly coloured local parrot. The 'cows' along the town's streets are simply an eye-catching play on words. Youngsters, especially, are fascinated by these life size and lifelike creatures.

The number of tourists passing through 'Cowtown', as the locals often refer to it, have found this the ideal place to take a break and stock-up on provisions for a camping meal...

...indulge in some gourmet and souvenir shopping...

... or stop for a fabulous locally-roasted coffee.



Margaret River - but who was Margaret?

It appears that the town is named after the river, which is presumed to be named after Margaret Whicher, a cousin of the founder of Busselton.

Here's that local cow and cheese theme again. 

Not only is there a Whicher National Park nearby, but the Margaret River Dairy Company has also added an award-winning cheese using her name as well.

While the main streets of Margaret River are filled with tourist-abilia, cafes, restaurants and artworks....

...naturally much of the focus in this region is on vineyards and local produce. In fact, driving along on these country roads is almost like walking through an amazing wine cellar or browsing a top restaurant's wine list and menu.

Many may think of the Margaret River Wine Region as long established, yet compared to many in the eastern states of Australia, or even Perth itself, it is relatively new.

Vines, in what was to become The Margaret River Wine Region, were first planted by Perth cardiologist, Tom Cullity, in 1967. There's that name again. Remember it from the signpost at the top of this page?


Of course it was an inspired choice to plant vines and the region quickly began producing some of Australia's best wines, and is now highly regarded worldwide.

It's all here, in this corner of WA. Prize-winning world standard wines...

...cellar doors where you can enjoy a view of vineyards as you taste-test the wines...

... and endless opportunities to learn more about the wines of this region.

Click here to see more...

This region still uses the original roads from the early farming era, so as you twist and turn in your travels, you need a good map (from the Visitor Centre) and a GPS.

Good signposts like these are also useful, and it's important to remember that wine is not the only drink hereabouts. Watch out for signs to breweries and distilleries as well.

There is also no reason for chocolate-lovers to feel left out.

The Margaret River Chocolate Co. was established in 1999. showcasing local dairying, innovation - and chocolates! This immense cafe and showroom will soon have your eyes (and shopping bags) bulging. Allow time to take it all in. Oh, and there are often samples! 

We had heard rumours of the fact that the best bread in the area came from nearby Yallingup. Daily, freshly baked, tasty sourdough has the locals lining up every afternoon when the loaves are due to come out of the oven at Margaret River Wood-fired Bread.

After a treasure-hunt back-road drive, following small flame-shaped signs, we found it, and joined the queue!

So fresh you should be able to smell the aroma too from here, one of these loaves became our dinner that evening.



Spring in the south-west

On other roads in this region there is even more to discover - especially in spring and into early summer.

This road may look a little ordinary but, stop the car and step out on the roadside, as we did...

...and you will find a multitude of native flowers at your feet.

This fellow is everywhere in the local bushland and is a native Western Australian grass-tree. Its botanical name is Xanthorrhoea preissii and it is fire resistant, living up to 600 years old in some instances.

Colour in the bush is important to visiting insects, and this pea-shaped member of the hovea family is attractive to photographers as well.

(Please remember that it is illegal to pick wildflowers in Western Australia)

Too soon, it was time for us to say a sad farewell to this rich and amazing corner of Western Australia and its wonderful wines, wildflowers and wonderful memories.


We hope you have been inspired to visit soon , so you may taste, search for, and make your own memories!



Words and photographs: ©Sally Hammond

Video: ©Gordon Hammond

Sally & Gordon Hammond travelled independently on this trip.


PLEASE NOTE: This trip was taken pre-Covid, so some places may not be open and operating as they were at the time we visited.





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by the prestigious UK-based magazine...



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