Where I Have Been

Like most Kiwis, my first overseas trip was to Australia. Back in the 1980’s it was a real novelty to go there for the cheap shopping. We just didn’t have the cheap clothing places like The Warehouse, Postie Plus, K-Mart etc. It was so exciting to get all these bargains and come back to New Zealand with a whole new wardrobe!

I am doing this while travelling and I have the detailed list of cities I have visited in each country so it will be a while before I can add that. For now it is pretty much from memory.

1980 something…

Australia – Sydney, Surfers Paradise. Also Brisbane a number of times.

May 1997…

Bali – Denpasar, Ubud, Kuta

2001 – 6 month trip…

Thailand – Bangkok
Hong Kong
China – Guangzhou, Foshan
Namibia – Windhoek, Swakopmund
South Africa – Capetown, Cape Point
England – London, Bath, Manchester
Ireland
Scotland
Wales
France – Paris, Grenoble
Spain
Portugal
Switzerland
Germany – Baden Baden
Czech Republic – Prague
Austria
Italy – Rome
Greece – Athens, Naxos
Turkey – Selcuk
Canada
United States – Los Angeles, New York (was there two weeks after 9/11)
Honolulu
Brisbane

July 2003…

Thailand – Bangkok, Pattaya, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai
Burma – walked over the border from Thailand for a few hours

June 2006…

Rarotonga

July 2008…

Australia – Cairns

8 July – 17 October 2010…

Argentina – Buenos Aires
Brazil – Rio de Janeiro, Foz do Iguaçu
Peru – Lima, Cusco, Aguas Calientes, Machu Picchu, Huancayo, Ayacucho, Ollantaytambo, Pisac, Calca, Chinchero
Ecuador – Quito
Colombia – Bogota, Medellín, Cali, Santa Marta, Riohacha
Chile – Santiago

6 July 2013 – 17 April 2014…

Chile – Santiago, San Pedro de Atacama, Arica
Peru – Arequipa, Paracas, Moquegua, one afternoon in Ilo, Huanchaco, Trujillo, Mancora
Ecuador – Cuenca
Colombia – Medellín

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4 thoughts on “Where I Have Been

  1. Wow, Jennifer!!! You have been to so many places and have had so many opportunities to travel. You can probably write a travel book. And your blog is coming along very nicely! I like the additions of quotes and more. Plus, you’re able to churn out your stories and experiences while you’re on the road! Awesome!!! I look forward to reading about your adventures soon, especially Arequipa :-).

  2. Thanks Taiwanda 🙂 I have been very fortunate and blessed being able to do so much travel. Keeping up with Facebook, posting photos and my blog is just about a full-time job! It’s so much easier if you can do your blog as you go. I also keep a hard copy diary so can refer back to that when I do my blog updates. I just need to work out the best way to put more photos on here. The photos are so slow to upload. Do you have any suggestions? I have put my videos onto You Tube so need to add a few links in here. Like I said…a full-time job. I have been a bit distracted because I have been building a new website for my Just Eventz business. It still needs a bit more work 🙂

    • Hi

      Thank you for your interest in Medellin.

      I am a bit behind with my blog. I have been back in Medellin for the past seven weeks and will be here for at least a year as I have a teaching job to start next year.

      To answer your question, and I’ll be blunt because I don’t have much tolerance for people who condemn a place without ever having been there. Unfortunately the media bombards us with a lot of negative information.

      My opinion is that Medellin is a lot safer than a lot of other parts of the world. Ten years ago Medellin was the most dangerous city in the world. I congratulate the people of Medellin for turning that around in such a short time.:

      “In 2012, Medellín was among 200 cities around the world, including New York and Tel Aviv, nominated for Most Innovative City of the Year due to a great advancement in public transportation, with more than 500,000 residents and visitors using its Metro train system each day; a public bike-share program; new facilities and landmarks, including the España Library and a cultural center in Moravia; a large outdoor escalator the size of a 28-story building, enabling residents of the city’s elevated Comuna 13 neighborhood to safely ride down the steep hillside; and a Metro system which reduces Medellín’s CO2 emissions by 175,000 tons each year.[19] Medellín has the biggest research-dedicated building in Colombia called University Research Building (Spanish: Sede de Investigación Universitaria -SIU-)[20] a facility that concentrates the top research groups of the University of Antioquia[21] (Spanish: Universidad de Antioquia).”
      Source: Wikipedia: Medellin

      Like any large city, there are parts that you are advised not to venture into after dark. Certain areas you just need to take a bit more precaution with your belongings, e.g. don’t flash your camera or your smart phone about, wear your backpack on your front, rather than on your back. There are people here who will definitely take advantage of an opportunity to rob you. You just need to use common sense like you would in any country you are not familiar with and you are an obvious tourist.

      I am currently in Laureles which is a really good area and walk around at night without any fears, but I am still aware of what is going on around me. In New Zealand I lived in a lower class suburb of Tauranga, there was a murder a few houses from mine, my neighbours were robbed, gangs were living a few streets over. I lived there for nearly 10 years and personally had no problems apart from a bit of graffiti on my fence and my letter box knocked off the fence. That kind of thing can happen even in the best neighbourhoods. One of my good Paisa(the name for people who are from Medellin) friends here in Medellin suffered a home invasion and was drugged and robbed a couple of nights ago. Things can and do happen, no matter where you visit or live in the world.

      In summary, Medellin is a perfectly safe city to come to. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t. I think it is a shame that Colombia still has the stigma of being a dangerous country. A lot of people are missing out on so much by believing everything they read. Fortunately, tourism is growing here and people are starting to realise by word-of-mouth that Colombia is a great place to visit and even settle. Paisa’s are friendly, helpful, kind, very proud and laid back people. The city of Medellin is a mix of modern architecture and technology but still retains the street vendors in various parts of the city, and the markets in the central city alongside the modern shops.

      If you get the opportunity to travel to Colombia, my advice is, go for it!

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