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Posts Tagged ‘forest’

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Dawn in the beautiful Boranup Karri forest in Margaret River.

 

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_EBT4769I spent a couple of nights up at Nanga Brook near Dwellingup (about an hour and a half south of Perth).  Tall trees, cool night air and solitude right on the banks of the Murray River.

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Nanga Brook runs throught the old township and in the late afternoon the chorus of birds and light playing off the water makes it a wonderfully peaceful place.

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Last time we were in Bali we seemed to do a lot of the ‘touristy’ things that there were to do.  Now there’s nothing wrong with ‘touristy’ things, it’s just that I’m not a big fan.  The novelty of relaxing by the pool in some resort or shopping for bargains tends to wear off after about 15 minutes and shuffling along with the masses to some ‘must see’ attraction, although often necessary, has about as much appeal as having teeth pulled.  So right from the start we made it our goal on this trip to get away from the tourist hot spots and see (and photograph) more of the ‘real’ Bali. _IBT7452_3_4_tonemapped Damn I love the internet!!!  After a bit of searching I came across the blog of one Yande Ardana http://www.yandeardana.blogspot.com.au   Yande’s a Balinese local, tour guide and very keen photographer.  For the better part of the last 15 years he’s been showing off his beloved Bali to visitors and recently decided to combine that with his love of photography and started specialising in photographic tours.  So for roughly A$100 per day we had our very own private tour guide come driver, come interpreter and despite the early starts, even ‘she who must be obeyed’ had to agree it was one of my better ideas. Employing the ‘Yande’ factor had some great benefits. Having a photographer as a guide means you don’t have to explain why it’s important to be up before dawn. _IBT7412 Yande knew the places to be and when for the best light.  He also knew about the little out of the way places. He knew the people and customs so we didn’t have to worry about making a faux pas and because we were often off the beaten track we had a lot more meaningful interaction with the locals, not just the “you buy, you buy ” that you get bombarded with on the tourist strip. _IBT7541 The best part was that although we relied heavily on Yande’s advice and expertise, ultimately we set the itinerary and the timetable, which meant we stayed as long as we wanted at any one spot, if we saw something interesting along the way we could stop. And there was no pressure to visit places we weren’t interested in.  There’s nothing worse than being forced to spend an hour touring the Museum of 1950s BBC Weather Forecasts and then driving past the 300m waterfall complete with performing dolphins to go and watch how toothpicks are made. _IBT7231 Of course if you have plenty of time then its’ always great fun to travel around and find all these fabulous places by yourself.  But if you’re anything like us, holiday time is a precious commodity and by utilizing Yande’s knowledge we were able to get the most out of our short stay. We’d never hired a dedicated guide, photographic or otherwise, before but after our recent experience with Yande it will be right up the top of our ‘things to consider’ list when we head off again to some distant and exotic land.  And when we head back to the not so distant but still quite exotic Bali again we’ll definitely be giving Yande a call. _IBT8387

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She did it again

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Another great shot courtesy of my wife.  Taken in Bali on one of the paths to the waterfalls, the two ‘serious’ photographers had walked right past it and it was left up to the ‘newby’ with the point and shoot to see the simplistic beauty of the leaf.  I’ve tweaked the colour and contrast a bit and added some vignette but other than that it’s all hers.

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