Everyone loves to get away and see something new and adventurous – and it’s even better when you don’t have to leave home to do it.
Richard Jordan is an experienced world traveler and he looks for things that are unusual and entertaining on his trips. Each presentation starts with a little bit of history and geography and then we are off to all corners of the world on some memorable adventures.
Adventures in Morocco
Morocco is a surprisingly diverse and welcoming nation. On the crossroads of history between Africa and Europe, Morocco has been influenced by Islam, Judaism and European colonialism. In April 2023, my wife and I went on an extensive tour that took us to Morocco’s cities and countryside. Along the way we visited ancient Roman ruins, ate delicious meals in ordinary Moroccan homes, trekked across the Sahara desert by camel and visited Kasbahs, Souks and Medinas from Casablanca to Marrakesh. This is the story of what we learned about the people and the ancient and modern sights of this fascinating nation.
The photos to the right show some of our Adventures in Morocco – clockwise from top left: Richard and Maureen in the blue city of Chefchaouen, flowers in Fez, by camel across the Sahara, dining with a Berber family, shopping in the busy Medina of Marrakesh and a Moroccan breakfast featuring home-made yoghurt. There are lots of fascinating stories and great pictures along with entertaining personal insights..
Adventures in Japan
Japan is a different world. It’s thoroughly modern and yet it’s also incredibly ancient. In October 2019, my wife and I went on a food tour that took us to some of Japan’s largest cities and smallest places including a Buddhist monastery. Then we went on a walking tour along the ancient Nakasendo Trail, staying in traditional Japanese inns known as Ryokans. This is a story of only some of the things we learned about in Japan from bullet trains to hot spring baths to high-tech toilets.
The photos below show some of our Adventures in Japan – ranging from food and culture to Bullet Trains and the bizarre. There are lots of great stories and great pictures along with an entertaining commentary.
Click here for more photos of my adventures in Japan
Adventures in Shanghai
Shanghai was once known as “The Paris of the East” and “The Pearl of the Orient” – a sophisticated city in the heart of a huge but backward land. Today Shanghai is the pride of a new modernizing China. It is the world’s second largest city and boasts the longest subway system on the planet. Come and see both the old and the new as we go on three different adventures: An intimate look at an old-style neighbourhood, a ride on the ultramodern MagLev train at 431 km per hour; and shopping in a modern street market in Suchow.
The photo shows Shanghai in the 1930s. Sophisticated high rises built in the Art Deco style overlook ancient junks sailing on the Huangpu River. Trees line the Bund, the concourse that separates the business district from the water. Today these historic buildings are still there and Shanghai has overtaken Hong Kong to become the busiest port in the world.
Driving Iceland’s Ring Road
Iceland’s Route 1, known as the Ring Road, circles the North Atlantic island nation and offers some of the best scenery in the world – beautiful blue fjords, snow-capped mountains and a variety of volcanic landforms. We will briefly look at the history and geography of Iceland and then experience an epic week-long drive around the Ring Road with lots of spectacular photos and interesting stories!
The photo shows the road running by a fjord, a volcanic mountain to the left and some summer snow on the highlands in the distance. Every day in Iceland is spectacular and you can see a lot of Iceland by driving the famous Ring Road.
The Great Wall and Terracotta Warriors – Beijing and Xi’an
Beijing, the capital of China, is almost 3,000 years old. Home to both the 2008 Summer and 2022 Winter Olympic games, Beijing is also one of the world’s most modern cities. After touring it, we will visit the nearby Great Wall of China. Then it’s on to Xi’an, the home of the Terracotta Warriors, a collection of more than 8,000 life-size figures buried with Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China in 210 BC and only rediscovered in 1974 by a farmer digging a well.
The photo shows a modern wonder of the world, the famous Terracotta Warriors in the pits where they were found near Xi’an. Each clay warrior has been reassembled from fragments, a daunting task since there are more than 8,000 of the figures, and the army came with horse-drawn chariots, all in terracotta, as well.
The Netherlands – The Land the Dutch Made
It’s said that the Lord made the whole world … with one exception. The Dutch made the Netherlands, reclaiming much of the land from the sea. We will talk a bit about the history and geography of the Netherlands and then see how the Dutch actually create new land. Then we will visit Amsterdam and a number of other picturesque towns, complete with visits to famous art galleries to see beautiful paintings by artists like Rembrandt, Frans Hals and Vermeer .
The photo shows a sea of grass where there was once a sea of water. The Dutch have managed to reclaim huge new farming areas from the sea by surrounding shallow seas with dykes and then pumping out the water. And always conscious of the environment, the bicycle has become their favourite form of transportation. Come and spend a pleasant hour with me in the beautiful Netherlands.
The West Coast of Ireland
Ireland is the Emerald Isle and no place in Ireland is more beautiful and unspoiled than the West Coast. We’ll briefly look at the history and geography of this famous land before taking an adventurous drive to see ancient castles, modern towns and the highest cliffs in Europe as well as miles and miles of spectacular scenery.
The photo shows the mighty Cliffs of Moher on Ireland’s west coast. At their tallest, they are 702 feet (214 m) high and run for 9 miles (14 km) along the wild Atlantic Ocean. But the cliffs are only one of Ireland’s attractions. There are castles, beaches, cathedrals and unending green fields. Come and take a break by spending an hour with me in beautiful Ireland.
Walking Hadrian’s Wall
Hadrian’s Wall was built right across the north of England by the Romans in the Second Century AD to protect their settlements from barbarian raiders from what is now Scotland. Stretching 84 miles from sea to sea, the ruins of the wall are now paralleled by a modern walking trail. We will look at what the Romans were doing in Britain, how and why they built the wall, and how it survived through the centuries. Then we’ll take a fully illustrated walk along its whole length. It’s an epic 9-day adventure with lots of spectacular photos and interesting stories!
The photo shows the ruins of Hadrian’s Wall running through Northumbria, England. Come and take an adventurous walk along it with historian Richard Jordan.
Adventures in Turkey
Turkey stands at the crossroads of the world – the land connection between Europe and Asia which straddles the sea route between the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. In May 2022, my wife and I went on an extensive tour of the country. Along the way we visited the ancient ruins of Troy and Ephesus, saw whirling dervishes and took an early morning balloon flight to see the sunrise in Cappadocia. We ate fabulous meals, took a Turkish bath, and shopped in Istanbul’s ancient Grand Bazaar. This is the story of what we learned about the people and the sights – both ancient and modern – of this fascinating nation..
The photo on the right shows some of our Adventures in Turkey – clockwise from top left: Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar, Richard and Maureen, ballooning in Cappadocia, silk rug making and Turkish delights. There are lots of fascinating stories and great pictures along with entertaining personal insights.
Click here to see photos of my adventures in Turkey
Adventures in Italy
Italy is a tourist magnet. It has some of the best-preserved ruins of the ancient Roman world, the finest Renaissance art and architecture and spectacular natural scenery, not to mention irresistible food! In this lively presentation we’ll get off the beaten track exploring the canals of Venice from a gondola, and walking the “Path of the Gods” on the Amalfi coast. But we’ll also climb the Leaning Tower of Pisa, see the magnificent art of Florence, enter the Blue Grotto on the Isle of Capri and explore the ruins of Pompeii, the Coliseum in Rome and the Sistine Chapel.
The photos on the left show some of our Adventures in Italy – clockwise from top left: Richard and Maureen on the Amalfi coast, Michelangelo’s David, wall paintings in Pompeii, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, a Venice Gondolier, Gelato and Seafood Risotto. There are lots of fascinating stories and great pictures along with entertaining personal insights.