Europe

My travels through Europe have taken me to the following countries:
1) Iceland in 1990 and again in 2013
2) Norway in 1989
3) Italy - in 2007
4) Northern Spain - in 2011

Iceland - in 1990 my first trip took me to Reykjavik and from there I explored the south of the Island including day trips to the Southern Shore and also the Golden Circle Tour. This was a Summer trip so the weather was OK - if a little cool - and Iceland had just benefited from the visits of the Presidents of the USA and USSR at that time. So there were American Steak Houses everywhere - with prices to match.
By 2013 - for my second trip - things had changed and there was a much wider range of eating-out paces in the capital - but the welcome from the locals was still the same.
This trip though was at the end of the Icelandic Winter [March] so there was a lot more snow on the ground.
                                           Click on a thumbnail below for a better view of Iceland

Dettifoss - one of the largest waterfalls in Europe

For more images from my Icelandic trip check out my Flikr page - click on the camera

Iceland

Norway

Noway was my very first overseas trip in 1989. I decided on doing a small 'grand tour' by Plane, Boat and Train starting from Bergen and then via Voss on the Hardangerfyord and onto Aurland on the Sognefyord and then back to Bergen. Along the way were some stunning scenery of Lakes, Mountains and Waterfalls.
Bergen - a small but very picturesque town in the heart of Norways' Fyordlands

The Waterfall at Flam - on the world-famous scenic railway

The Sognefyord at Aurland

Italy 2007

Spain 2011

In 2010 I wanted to find a vacation which combined walking, wildlife watching, improving my camera techniques and doing a bit of stargazing as well.
After scouring the various offerings from 'special interest' tour providers I settled on a combination of a weeks walking/wildlife spotting along the Camino de Santiago long distance footpath in northern Spain joined onto a weeks scenery and wildlife photography course run form the same base in the village of Berdun in northern Spain only a few 10s of kilometers from the border with France.
What I did know of the trip that airline restrictions caused me to travel light - certainly lighter than I usually do on vacation - so I need to get well prepared.
In the company of botanists and wildlife experts from Naturetrek I set off using Casa Sarasa in the village of Berdun as a daily base.
For the first week each day was taken up with a minibus ride to a staging point along the Camino de Santiago footpath with a 7 to 12 kilometer fairly leisurely walk and do a bit of wildlife spotting along the way. I was lucky that it was  a very small group and everyone else were keen birdwatchers - so I learnt a lot about what to see and how to take a picture of it.
At the start of the second week the group was introduced to out photography Expert - Sergio Padura - and in the course of 6 days we had a hour or two of varied tuition in camera set-up and framing techniques as well as image planning/set-up and special techniques for adding dynamism into still images using shutter control. This was followed by a full day of field trips to capture both wildlife - principally birds and butterflies - and scenery such as valleys, waterfalls, trees and mountains
In the past 40+ years many birds of prey in this area were poisoned by the indiscriminate use of a banned animal supplement.
In recent times a government scheme now takes pesticide free dead animals and sets them as food for raptors such as Egyptian Vultures and Lamageiers on special feeding stations which are changed daily.
Here you can see a few of over 500 birds that came within 1 hour of a dead carcass being placed at one of the feeding stations

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For more images of this trip please click on the camera icon....

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Strokkur Geysir
Lake Myvatn in Winter
The Aurora Borealis

Golden Eagle as seen near Berdun, Aragon

Adonis Blue - Northern Spain

The Double Cluster in Perseus - image taken near Berdun

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