Author Archives: Julie Paterson

2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt: A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,000 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people. Click here to […]

Code of Conduct

I am a Kiwi and a Sagittarius, which means honesty comes naturally to me (truth is… I am such a bad liar, I have no choice). All opinions on this site are my own. Any products found on the site have either been tried and tested by me or my friends or clients and discussed and reviewed […]

It’s Christmas: still no room at the inn

It’s quite hard, I find,  to enjoy a cup of tea at someone’s house when you can hear gunshots being fired outside. It was late in the afternoon, and I was at Hashem el-Azzeh’s house in Hebron, Palestine. My friend, Sophie, and I had just spent an interesting and moving day walking around the settler-occupied neighbourhood […]

My favourite books on my favourite place: Morocco

Morocco is a mystical, mysterious and exotic place. It’s a magical blend of Arabia and Africa – from the Atlas mountains to the Sahara desert where the warm, timeless desert breeze touches your soul, to the ancient cities of Marrakesh, Fez and Casablanca, whose protective city walls drip with secrets of days gone by. It’s also a […]

My top 10 fiction and non-fiction books to read on Vietnam

A list of interesting, insightful and above all true-life or true-to-life books on Vietnam. If you are going to Vietnam, these books will make your journey more meaningful. If you haven’t been yet, or don’t even plan to go, they will still enrich your knowledge about a beautiful part of the world with tragic recent history.

My top 10 most insightful books to read on Cambodia

Recommended Reading: Cambodia Cambodia has to be one of the most moving places I have ever been to. Their tragic recent past still haunts the population today in the form of landmine victims, psychological trauma, lost family members and mistrust.  However they struggle on with life – because after all, it could not be worse […]

Four things I ALWAYS travel with

I often get asked for travel tips, or what I would NOT leave behind when I go travelling, so here goes. (Just click on the picture for more information and prices): It is really important to have a decent shoulder bag! I gave up wearing money belts years ago!  YUCK! I got tired of having that […]

Zen and the art of relaxing …whilst taking on a scarey, new challenge

It is winter in Dahab, Egypt, but the sun still shines every day. Dahab is surrounded by a backdrop of caramel-coloured, desertous mountains which contrast nicely next to the turquoise waters of the Red Sea. As a busy person, I come here for the winter, not to grind to a halt, but for some “downtime”

Giving back and travelling in Cambodia

When you booked yourself a trip to Cambodia, lured by the ancient temples of Angkor Wat, lush landscapes, warm temperatures, cheap cocktails and tropical beaches, you might not have spared much of a thought for it’s recent dark past. Maybe when the Khmer Rouge took Phnom Penh by storm in 1975 and sent the inhabitants of the […]

The Cold Truth about Tour Guiding

When you work as an overseas tour guide, people think you live some kind of fantasy jet-set lifestyle, constantly on the move, meeting interesting people, having fabulous experiences and, between trips you are to be found lying under palm trees on white beaches drinking copious amounts of pina coladas. Whilst this is not entirely true, it looks […]