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Michael Turtle
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Michael Turtle

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One of the things I'm really enjoying about my active week in France with +Headwater Holidays is the accommodation they organise. They're beautiful places with dinner included at excellent gastronomic restaurants attached.

Last night I stayed here at Chateau De Monrecour near the town of Beynac. It was a really special place and it's hard to leave this morning for my long walk to Sarlat :)

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Aaaah, Sarlat. Make sure you enter one of the Charcuteries shops, the selection of cold meats is absolutely fantastic. With a fresh loaf of bread from the Boulangerie next door, you have an improvised gastronomic meal...
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Michael Turtle

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It's market day in the small French city of Souillac. All the local producers bring their fresh food into town for the residents to do their weekly shop.

It was lovely wandering through the stalls this morning before I set out for another day of kayaking down the Dordogne.

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Kayaking along the Dordogne in France today. So pretty! Every bend brings you to a new beauty.

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such a peaceful scene
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Michael Turtle

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After spending the day here in France cycling to Rocamadour, I thought the old city built on a cliff would be the most beautiful thing I saw today.

But then, a couple of hours later, I saw this tree in a field and I slammed on the bike's brakes and sat there looking at it for ages.

It's funny how the simple things can be so wonderful. Hopefully I will find more as I continue my +Headwater Holidays trip through Dordogne.

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hermoso paisaje michael¡
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Michael Turtle

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Such a cute little sight as I walked through the town of St Sozy yesterday afternoon on my +Headwater Holidays trip through the Dordogne region of France.

Today I'm getting on the bike for a big cycle - although I may go for the flat option rather than tackle some of the hills around here ;)

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simplemente bello¡
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Michael Turtle

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And so my little mini-adventure across the Dordogne region of France begins. Today is all about walking and I am starting here - in the town of Martel. A quick coffee, a water top up, and now I'm off to see the countryside with +Headwater Holidays.

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You're at the border of several areas, both administrative and historical.
Administratively speaking, you're in-between Lot and Dordogne department (and very close to the Corrèze department). What may be confusing you is that department are often named after rivers. Napoleon did that to reduce the importance of historical regions and prevent regionalism and independence movements. So obviously, the Dordogne river goes through the Dordogne department, but not only.
If you consider historical regions, you're in between Périgord (roughly the Dordogne department) and Quercy (Lot, but also Tarn-et-Garonne as well as parts of Lot-et-Garonne). They're probably very similar to the untrained eye, but they do have their particularities, too.
Quercy is a bit drier, high in elevation, more hilly, etc.
If you need any tips, advice as to where to go and such, do not hesitate.
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Michael Turtle

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What a great couple of days going down the Dordogne River in France on this baby. I have to admit, I probably did as much floating as paddling - but that's just because I wanted to enjoy all the scenery around me.

Tomorrow is the last full day of my multi activity trip with +Headwater Holidays. Need to choose between cycling or walking to get me to the last hotel. Thoughts?

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Beautiful view..
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There were so many different views today as I kayaked down the Dordogne here in France - but this is one of my favourites. I love how, not only does the water reflect the bridge, but it's so clear you can see the rocks on the riverbed.

I'm doing a multi activity trip with +Headwater Holidays which means a bit of kayaking, cycling and walking. They organise my hotels and move my bags between them. I just get to enjoy the scenery! smile emoticon

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After cycling yesterday here in France, today I am hitting the river for some kayaking.

This is the Dordogne and it'll be carrying me along for the next couple of days. Don't you just love the view from the bridge at Meyronne?

It's all part of a multi activity trip I am doing this week with +Headwater Holidays.

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Wow! Very nice place.
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The destination for my cycle through France today: Rocamadour.

This town on a hill was started in the 11th century as a religious centre. Churches and shrines were built into the caves that have naturally formed here. It's now an important pilgrimage site and hundreds of thousands of people make the journey here each year.

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Enticing views
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Walking through France. So beautiful.

But it's hot here in the Dordogne region today - maybe about 35 degrees. But when I turned off this small country road, I went along a little track through some forest that was well shaded. It suddenly felt so much cooler and I powered on before my next rest.

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Agreed this is gorgeous!
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Michael Turtle

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So, I've arrived in the Dordogne region of France, ready for an active week of cycling, hiking and kayaking. But... that all starts in the morning. In the meantime, I'm going to enjoy the food and the views here at my hotel :)

It's all part of a trip with +Headwater Holidays where they arrange the accommodation and meals and help with the logistics - but leave me to explore independently during the day by following their suggested routes.

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Watch out for the canicule this week, being active in 38°c + temps is not clever! Here in deux sevres, we have all been warned to stay out of the heat......
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Time Travel Turtle: Global explorer and travel writer
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Michael is Time Travel Turtle
Time Travel Turtle takes you beyond the brochure. It lets you understand your planet through the culture, foods, history and people it's made of. This is your travel guide to the places that matter - and why they matter. See the world for all its wonders.
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A wonderful reserve and something a little different from the flat plains of Africa. So few people are in the reserve that you'll probably see nobody else when you're driving in the vehicle. The Big Five are all here and there is plenty of wildlife. A stay at the Bongani Mountain Lodge is also fantastic with lovely rooms and wonderful service.
Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago
The Museum of Ethnology is a little way out of the main parts of Hanoi and you’ll probably need to organise a taxi or some other transportation to get there. Although it has a good reputation and is well organised, all the information can be a little overwhelming. It is essentially a museum about the different ethnic groups in Vietnam but it can be hard to take it all in. It is much better to visit if you know which areas of the country you are planning (or have) visited, so it makes a bit more sense. The main building has lots of displays and information while the outside areas has reconstructions of traditional buildings used by the various ethnic groups.
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Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago
This beautiful temple in the Old Town of Hanoi was built in 1070 and is one of the most important religious sites in the city. It is laid out in five courtyards which you can walk through as you make your way from one end to the other. The first part of the complex feels like a large shady garden while, at the other end, a two storey structure hold some of the most important altars and places of worship. The Temple of Literature is seen as an important site for education and during the graduation season there will be hundreds of students posing for photos and waiting for blessings.
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Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago
The Hoa Lo Prison was used by two different groups during its history. Firstly, by the French colonists who held Vietnamese people here as political prisoners, and then by the Vietnamese who held American prisoners of war. The exhibitions on display try to give the impression that the French treated the Vietnamese terribly but the Vietnamese looked after the Americans. You’ll be able to see some of the holding cells and a few reconstructions of what life was like in Hoa Lo Prison over the years. Look out for the photos and flight suit of US presidential hopeful John McCain who was held captive here.
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Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago
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This art gallery is often overlooked by tourists but it is actually very good with an excellent collection of work from Vietnamese artists. It has displays of historical art periods as well as a decent selection of modern art. The Vietnam Fine Arts Museum is considered to be the most important art gallery in the country and it would be easy to spend a couple of hours looking at all of the pieces. It could do with a bit more information on the best way to explore the building because the entrances to some of the rooms are not that clear.
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Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago
Near the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is the Vietnam Military History Museum, a collection of old military equipment used by the Vietnamese as well as items captured from the French and Americans. It’s easy to spot because of the tanks and planes in the outside areas around the main buildings. These large bits of hardware are the highlight of the museum and you can go right up to them and look in. The exhibitions inside the museum are quite basic and are probably of more interest to a military history buff than the average tourist. It has information and displays from older conflicts as well as the more recent ones that most people are familiar with.
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Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago
Ho Chi Minh’s Vestige is part of the mausoleum complex but you’ll need to pay to get in (the mausoleum itself is free). You’ll be able to see the outside of the Presidential Palace but can’t go inside. What you can see are the offices in the smaller houses nearby where Ho Chi Minh used to work. There are also some of his belongings including some cars that he used. The small lake and the gardens are pretty and you’ll be able to go inside a stilt house, which is where Ho Chi Minh apparently lived for most of his tenure, shunning the more opulent palace. Although the vestige may not be worth a visit on its own, it makes sense to do it if you go to the mausoleum.
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Public - a week ago
reviewed a week ago