To Faroe Islands Via Copenhagen

June 2019, 3 old buddies are going to meet up somewhere on the north. Meisam who lives in Germany, Alan traveling all the way from Sydney , and Steve from USA. The plan is to reunion in Copenhagen, 13th June, and then fly to the Islands on 14th .

i arrived 1 day earlier in Copenhagen, so I had one extra day to look around the city , going for a Toastmaster club on the evening and then waiting for my friends to start the adventure .

Here is some pictures if my walk on the Streets of Copenhagen, From Frederiksberg Garden to the little mermaid.

 

 

Erfurt and Weimar

This weekend I and 3 others of my friends have a short trip to two cites on the state Thüringen , Erfurt and Weimar. Erfurt is said is a student city and Weimar is one of the cultural centers of  Germany, where Goehthe and Schiller lived .

walking in the Weimar center the first thing that captured my eyes is the status of Goethe and Schiller, standing shoulder by shoulder representing the city .

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walking further in the city, I could see the home of schiller and some street away the home where Goethe used to live. In front of his home there are some coaches carrying tourists to show them around the city, but there are also small buses with dark windows that carry tourists around. I did not  understand why the windows are so dark, and no one could see inside, but i hope the people inside could see outside well .

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we decided to visit Goethe national museum where is actually he lived for years. He was one of the Poets I learnt about as a child in school in Iran ,and it is all because he read somehow poems of Iranian Hafis and he got inspired with what he read and later on made one of his books ” West-Östlicher Divan” under the influence of Hafis.

Here are some pictures from inside Goethe’s house and garden.

walking more around the city, we passed by something I did not expect to see in a city in Germany, Goethe-Hafis Memorial , where tow chairs are made , one for the eastern poet and one for the western poet, where they can sit face to face and say us the story of how people are connected despite their race,color, religion and culture.

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between the chairs a Poem of Hafis is written in Persian

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and a poem of Goethe behind one of chairs.

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I never thought visiting Weimar could bring me back to the time i was in Iran and still in school , when I used to read Hafis and go wherever its poems was read to listen to them.

walking more on the city, we passed by a place where Martin Luther used to live , just close to Weimar City Hall ( Rathaus) .

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The other city we visited on the weekend was Erfurt, were the food was so delicious.

walking on the city at night, again i faced a surprise when I saw that there was a Faris Calligraphy workshop on the city.

walking in the city, there are many nice buildings that one can see. we did not have time to get information about everything we saw, however I can share some of the pictures i captured during our walk in the city. Hopefully you like them.

 

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I want to finish my post this time with this poem from Johann Wolfggang von Goethe :

 

Liebhaber in allen Gestalten

Ich wollt’, ich wär’ ein Fisch,
So hurtig und frisch;
Und kämst du zu angeln,
Ich würde nicht mangeln.
Ich wollt’, ich wär’ ein Fisch,
So hurtig und frisch.

Ich wollt’, ich wäre Gold,
Dir immer im Sold;
Und tät’st du was kaufen,
Käm’ ich wieder gelaufen.
Ich wollt’, ich wär Gold,
Dir immer im Sold.

Wär’ ich Affe sogleich
Voll neckender Streich’;
Hätt’ was dich verdrossen,
So macht’ ich dir Possen.
Wär’ ich Affe sogleich
Voll neckender Streich’.

Wär’ ich gut wie ein Schaf,
Wie der Löwe so brav;
Hätt’ Augen wie’s Lüchschen
Und Listen wie’s Füchschen.
Wär’ ich gut wie ein Schaf,
Wie der Löwe so brav.

Was alles ich wär’,
Das gönnt’ ich dir sehr;
Mit fürstlichen Gaben,
Du sollst mich haben.
Was alles ich wär’,
Das gönnt’ ich dir sehr.

Doch bin ich, wie ich bin,
Und nimm mich nur hin!
Willst bessre besitzen,
So laß sie dir schnitzen.
Ich bin nun, wie ich bin:
So nimm mich nur hin!

A weekend on Swiss Alps/ Val Ferret ( part 1, Hikinig around)

On Friday 7th September till Monday 10th , I spend time on some part of the Alps that I have never been before. This part of the mountain range is very different with the Alps In Germany. The picks are higher, but it is not what i was amazed with. I was amazed with different range of colors I could see on the mountain , and i have not seen the same colors on German Alps.

the Saturday  hike to the top of the mountain where it is called Fenêtre de Ferret.

Green , yellow, red, then orange, because of different vegetation , White because of  glacier and white fluffy flowers that i do not know their name and blue color of sky mirrored on the lakes are what made my hike even more pleasant than what i expected.

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on the way there are 3 lakes and as understood all 3 lakes name is lacs de fenêtre.

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lacs de fenêtre 

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fenêtre de ferret is 2698 m above see level, and when we arrive on fenêtre de ferret, we can see Italian Alp in front and Switzerland behind us.

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Fenêtre de Ferret
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View to Italian Alps

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View to Swiss Alps

On the way down , there are some groundhogs enjoying their beautiful day under the sun.

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The hike on Sunday was a easier hike, just going to the dam that is near the Val de Ferret. I cannot remember the name of the dam., unfortunately.

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after the hikes, a beautiful cosy  house is waitng on the Valley to relax and be grateful of what life can offer to someone.

This is the end

we wake up early in the morning, we survived the windy cold night, and it is still very cold in the morning that i have to wear my hat and my jacket for the first time in this trip.

Today is the last day of our road trip. we have around 600 km from Glendambo  to Adelaide and then we are done. The plan is to reach Adelaide  before evening, to go to a camp place for the last time, and if  we have some time to look around the city and the next morning give the car back to the rental agency and then fly to Melbourne. Melbourne is where me and Iva split. I will stay there for some  more days and then fly to Sydney , and Ivan stays there for one more day and fly back to Europe.

on the way we have passes 2 ports, one is Porto Augusta and the other one is porto Pirie.

we stop at porto Pirie to have a lunch, and i get a big fish and chips .IMG_20171028_130901448.jpg

there are not that much to see on the way, the road is all sealed road and it is one of the main highways of Australia. it is quite clear that we are close to big cities ports since there are many cars and also Trucks on the road, beside a long freight train which is running parallel to the highway.

 

IMG_20171028_145935731There are a large white area that i think it should be a salt lake beside the road and even some people are walking on that lake.

and Finally we are there, Adelaide, where you can see even a Tribute to Ataturk.

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and I can say I will miss this part of the globe. I may come back again one day  or not, I will keep the memories of Savannah Way always with me.

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To the south

today we leave Alice Springs toward Adelaide.  it is around 1500 km from here to Adelaide, and we have 2 days to cover this distance. I do not expect seeing much on the way.

the road and the vegetation around seems totally different from what we have seen on previous days.

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we pass the boarder between Northern Territory and south Australia, where there is some bus staying to have a rest and take some pictures . The language that the travelers of one of the bus is speaking is familiar to me, Ja Ja, Klar, Bestimmt……doch ,…. .

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we have a stop on city named Marla to  take a rest and eat lunch. it is not a hot day, just a nice temperature. after lunch we continue our way untill we arrive at Glendambo, another small city . we stop here to take a short rest.

tonight we will stay in a camping ground in Glendambo. we mount or tent but it is a windy night, really windy. we use some extra rope to make sure that our tent will stay stable and not move too much at night. I am not sure if we can sleep with this wind on the tent. adding this point that it is really a cold night,as i remember from my childhood, when i was visiting my village of origin in a city on East of Iran , that had really cold nights despite its warm days. It is how desert is . each of us use 2 sleeping bags and try to sleep, even if i really think the wind will lift our tent with us inside.Lets see where we will be tomorrow, in our tent at Glendambo camping ground or somewhere else  due to the heavy wind, but hopefully still in our tent .i am thinking of Dorothy in the magical Land of Oz now. 125

 

 

Around Alice Springs-Part3

we are going to drive back to Alice Spring , stay the night there and tomorrow move forward toward Adelaide.

The next thing we see is a memorial of a person who had an accident when he was driving his Motor Bike on the road. Actually i have seen some others as well during the trip. since this memorial is on a hill we can have a look at the are around.

 

going further to the Alice spring, there is this amazing view that worth  to stop and spend some minutes to enjoy it.

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Around Alice Springs-part 2

leaving Desert Sanctuaries to the next stop, Ormiston waterhole and Gorge which again I do not expect to see much water in this time of the year.

but there were some people there who seems were swimming before we arrived in that shallow green water .

we leave the Gorge . it is around 1:00 PM . we think we drive further and if we see something interesting we can have a stop there. now it is around 30  minutes that we are driving , and we see the sign of outlook to the mount Sonder. we decides to stop and have a look around.

driving further , after around half an hour we reach the sign to Red Bank Gorge in West MacDonnel national park. I can say this is one of the most beautiful places I have seen today. you want to know why, let’s have a look at the pictures together.

Here is the route for this part of the trip in MacDonnel National Park in the center of Australia.

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Around Alice Springs-Part 1

Today we are going to have a look around Alice Springs, and I think we will come back again to the city and sleep here at night, or maybe we drive further, we do not know yet. we will find it out.

we leave the Camping place and decide to have breakfast on the way. It is around 8:30 that we reach a parking place with a nice view around on the top of a small hill,so we stop here and have our breakfast.

some minutes after another car drives to the parking place, a couple around 50 get out of the car.  We great each other. The man asks us where we are from. and we answer, Switzerland and Iran, but we live in Germany. They say that they are living in Sydney and they are in a one week holiday in Alice Spring, Then the man asks me if my family is in Iran, and if they are safe there. and I answer yes, Iran is a safe place to live. I get up to go taking some pictures. some minutes after he gets close to me.

-I am sorry young man, I did not want to offend you, he said.

-why? you did not do that, I answered.

-The western mind thinks that everything around that area is not safe, so I just did not think when I asked about safety in iran. But later i thought with me and told myself that there is no war there, but in other countries around, he said.

-No worries, I am used to this kind of questions. most of people in west do not really know that area, so I am familiar with what you said. that is all good, i said.

-yes , actually we have a neighbor who is from Iran…… and he continued talking about the neighbor , and his son who is studying in London.

we are done with breakfast and the conversation is almost to the end. we say good bye, but we know that we will meet them again on the way,since they are going to drive the same way as we want to do.

The first stop after breakfast is Ellery Creek big hole, where we can have a look at the shallow water in this time of the year.maybe in rain season there is much more water here.IMG_3784.JPGThe next stop is Serpentine Gorge, where I almost see no water, but there we have the chance to go to an outlook on the top of a big hill to have a look at Desert Sanctuaries.It is really hot here and to go for this kind of walk means the body needs much water or you can easily collapse and die because of dehydration. But probably you can survive if you are a small Lizard which is not really small.

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The same couple we met in Parking  place. we advised them not to continue the way, because it is really hot and also they did not have enough water in hand

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one of the inhabitants of the area

To Alice Springs

Last night was one of the coldest nights I have experienced in our trip , or I can say the coldest night so far. we are on desert area moving to the south. Today we want to reach Alice Springs. It is said that this city is the center of Australia, geographically. The highway we are driving is of a high quality, with a very beautiful landscape on the both sides of the way.IMG_3702.JPGOur First stop is Tennant Creek Telgraph station ,which is a historical site 16 Kilometers north of Tennant Creek . The station was built in 1872. If you are interested about the history of this station, you can find more information here.IMG_3706.JPG

IMG_3726.JPGThe next stop is the city where we will have a lunch , then we will drive further to Devils Marbles. There are many blogs and websites explaining about Devils Marbles, so I do not repeat them, But in case of interest you can click here or there.

the next stop is a very small city with population of 11 , according to Wikipedia.We  make a short stop here to have a look at its historical Telegraph station. This  station is also not very different from other small historical places we have seen on the way.IMG_3771.JPGwe were supposed to have a look at UFO center as well, but it seems that we passed it some minutes ago and we did not recognize it.

It is around 17:00 and we still have 200 km in front of us to reach Alice Springs, Just now a very strong wind pushed our car to the other side of the road, and I say we are very lucky that there is no other car on the road, otherwise our trip had to end disastrously right now.

It is around 19:00 and we arrive at big 4 McDonnell camping ground in Alice Springs, where there are many Cars and also some buses. This camping place is the most crowded one i have seen in this trip. people come here to go to uluru, where we probably will not have time to visit.

Here is the way we covered today, almost 900 km.

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To Elsey National Park

waking up at 7:45  in the morning and getting out of the tent,  I can see there are some Kangaroos around us looking for their breakfast .we can get close to them slowly, but there is a moment they realize our presence and run as fast as they can.

 

The camping ground is close to Katherine Gorge, therefore we decides to have a look around the gorge. Like many other things we have seen in the outback so far, this river also has routes in the Aboriginal people stories.According to the story, Nabilil ( NAH-bill-il), the dragon-like creation being from the Jawoyn ‘dream time’, had traveled from Wadeye(Port Keates) many kilometers to the west and decided to rest  at the entrance to the river. His journey up the river and subsequent death created the flowing water  we can see today.IMG_3576.JPGafter the short walk to see the river, we drive further and reach the address we got in the morning by phone from the car rental agency to change our  broken tire. then we can continue our way again with one extra new tire.our way is oh highway No. 1 , or Stuart highway to the south toward Elsey National Park.

we pass some historical memorials , related to the second world war .

Stirling mill , dated 1942 :

 

 

Old Sheep Dip on Mataranka station , dated 1913:

 

The next is Mataranka Aboriginal Army Camp. where Aboriginal people had to serve for a war that was not really their war.The Camp was established by late 1943 composed of 350 Aboriginal workers who were supporting the war effort by working for the Army. Army Aboriginal camps were also set up at Adelaide River, Manbulloo and Larrimah and as far south as Alice Springs. [For the source click hereIMG_3601.JPGand finally is the 45 Australian camp hospital, mainly operated by women. unfortunately  the description in my picture is not readable but if you are interested to know about that you can always look at the article Woman at war by clicking here .IMG_20171024_170110045 (1).jpgpassing all these WWII memories ,we have a chance to take a stroll along a Botanic Walk beside the Roper River. actually I have no idea about the vegetation and different trees on the walk.Botanic.JPG

driving further on the Stuart highway, we arrive on the Never Never Museum. I did not know anything about the novel ” We of the Never Never ” ,and the film which was made based on the novel.  I think in case I heard about that before, I could read the book or at least watch the film , but I will do it when I go back to Germany. If you have watched the movie , it can be interesting for you to know that the movie was produced in this location, actually the building was made to produce the film.

 

Beside the Never Never Museum, there is Mataranka Thermal pool where you can jump in warm water.  It may not be refreshing to be in warm water when the temperature outside is around 33 degree but it can be pleasant. Let’s try it .

we move toward the springs, passing high palm  and other kinds of trees. I hear many birds are crying or shouting and I am wondering what kinds of birds can they be. Just a look upward and see hundreds of bats hanging from the trees or flying on the sky, what I have never seen before, a Bat Garden, or as Alan told me Flying Foxes.

 

It is more interesting when you see the bats are even hanging from the branches extended over thermal springs. I try to avoid looking up , to avoid bat poo on my eyes, and i hope i had nothing on my hair as well.

 

It is around 4:30 PM that we leave the thermal pools to the direction south. we think we will sleep in Dunmarra camping ground tonight. It is around 6:30 PM and we are still on the way, with a very beautiful sunset view on our side.IMG_3689.JPGwhen we arrive in Dunmarra camping ground I can see there is a Petrol station there and there is also an aircraft runway beside the petrol station. So you can imagine that you are in the middle of nowhere again. The temperature dropped down ,and it seems it is going to be a very cold night , those kind of nights in desert.

Note: If you are interested to know more about Elsey national Park, click here.

From Today I try to uplad some pictures of the route on where we passed on the map,and i will try to do the same for the last days later.