Category Archives: Photography

Le Mans 2017

OK so this was my 9th trip to Le Mans in 11 years – and what a belter Le Mans 2017 turned out to be!

Same campsite, same format, many of the same great bunch of people – why change a winning formula?

The pictures always tell the story, the journey down, the campsite sports car show, the crazy noisy circuit and the incredible racing itself – so let the cars do the talking…

This is the place

This is the place whete today we are running the Manchester 10k with thousands of others. From Portland Street to Deansgate and everything in between.

This is the place.

This is the place

MediaCityUK looks amazing with the light installations glowing outside the appartment and everyone out enjoying a drink or a concert, the Courteeners concert drifting over from the cricket ground.

Goodwood Revival

Goodwood Revival

Last September we went to the Goodwood Revival. I won’t forget it in a hurry.

Goodwood Revival brings out all the best people

Goodwood Revival brings out all the best people

These images give you a flavour of the most interesting people you will find there.

Even if you don’t like old cars and racing, it’s hard to not get swept along in total escapism. I will be back there this year, rain or shine.

Bamburgh Castle


I love Bamburgh Castle.

The village of Bamburgh itself is always a great place to stop off, have a cuppa and do some exploring; this is a beautiful corner of England, best explored with a rangefinder camera and a waterproof coat (or a surf board and a wet suit)

Bamburgh Castle

A walk up the drive to Bamburgh Castle is the best place to stop and take stock; this is a fantastic castle and an important site. Not many places in the UK can match this, if you close your eyes and listen to the sea, you can hear history unfolding in your head.

Banburgh Beach goes on and on and on

Bamburgh Beach goes on and on and on

The beach walk to Seahouses

These dunes go on forever and ever.

Some Wikipedia history on the castle itself

Built on a dolerite outcrop, the location was previously home to a fort of the native Britons known as Din Guarie and may have been the capital of the British kingdom of the region (see Gododdin, Bryneich and Hen Ogledd)[2] from the realm’s foundation in c.420 until 547, the year of the first written reference to the castle. In that year the citadel was captured by the Anglo-Saxon ruler Ida of Bernicia (Beornice) and became Ida’s seat. It was briefly retaken by the Britons from his son Hussa during the war of 590 before being relieved later the same year.

His grandson Æðelfriþ passed it on to his wife Bebba, from whom the early name Bebbanburgh was derived. The Vikings destroyed the original fortification in 993.

The Normans built a new castle on the site, which forms the core of the present one. William II unsuccessfully besieged it in 1095 during a revolt supported by its owner, Robert de Mowbray, Earl of Northumbria. After Robert was captured, his wife continued the defence until coerced to surrender by the king’s threat to blind her husband.

Bamburgh then became the property of the reigning English monarch. Henry II probably built the keep. As an important English outpost, the castle was the target of occasional raids from Scotland.[citation needed] During the civil wars at the end of King John’s reign, it was under the control of Philip of Oldcoates.[3] In 1464 during the Wars of the Roses, it became the first castle in England to be defeated by artillery, at the end of a nine-month siege by Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick.

The Forster family of Northumberland[4] provided the Crown with twelve successive governors of the castle for some 400 years until the Crown granted ownership to Sir John Forster. The family retained ownership until Sir William Forster (d. 1700) was posthumously declared bankrupt, and his estates, including the castle, were sold to Lord Crew, Bishop of Durham (husband of his sister Dorothy) under an Act of Parliament to settle the debts.

The castle deteriorated but was restored by various owners during the 18th and 19th centuries. It was finally bought by the Victorian industrialist William Armstrong, who completed the restoration.

In 1944, during the Second World War, the Royal Navy corvette HMS Bamborough Castle was named after it.

The castle still belongs to the Armstrong family, and is opened to the public. It also hosts weddings and corporate events. It has been used as a film location since the 1920s, featuring in films such as Ivanhoe (1982), El Cid (1961), Mary, Queen of Scots (1971), Elizabeth (1998) and both the 1971 and 2015 adaptions of Macbeth.



A fantastic beach with not a lot happening

In addition to below, back in January, we had another trip to Saltburn-by-the-sea with some old mates yesterday.



I didn’t have my Leica with me, but could not resist updating this blog post with some snaps images from my iPhone, because whichever way you look at it, Saltburn-by-the-sea is a crazy old North East seaside town, I just love it.










The old cliff tram lift; Saltburn-by-the-Sea

We had a trip out to the seaside today, to Saltburn-by-the-Sea. What a charming little spot in the middle of nowhere, just the sea, a pier, and the best fish and chips you could ever hope for.

Last days of 2016

Now we are counting down the last days of 2016. So I went out with my camera in daylight and at night to catch the beauty that is all around us in North Yorkshire.

Frost crunching underfoot and gripping the trees

Thousands of stars in the sky

Crisp cold air and freezing breath

Its all here, and it will still be here in 3 days time when it’s 2017.


Light of the world

Today I love you iPhone 6s

Today I love you
iPhone 6s

Vibrant scenes and interesting art installations at MediaCityUK coupled to a tour of local festive lights in my own village this weekend highlighted to me that we sometimes miss the real meaning of Christmas, when it’s right there under our noses.

Leica M 240 Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH 24sec, f4.0 ISO 200

Leica M 240
Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH
24sec, f4.0 ISO 200

I was wondering around and about my village in the cold cold dark evening and it struck me that some of my neighbours have the most amazing Christmas light shows, lighting up their houses like beacons of celebration at this festive time.

Light of the world, Leica M 240 Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH 24sec, f4.0 ISO 200

Light of the world
Leica M 240
Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH
24sec, f4.0 ISO 200

The same can’t be said for the church, standing all forlorn and unlit in the sodium glow of the streetlights as the occasional car whispers past through the cold night.

Surely it should be the church that is lit up at this important time for Christians?

Light of the world Leica M 240 Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH 16 seconds, f4.0 ISO 200

Light of the world
Leica M 240
Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH
16 seconds, f4.0 ISO 200

Light of the World

(Greek: φώς τοῦ κόσμου Phṓs tou kósmou) is a phrase Jesus used to describe himself and his disciples in the New Testament.[1] The phrase is recorded in the Gospel of John and again in the Gospel of Matthew. It is closely related to the parables of Salt and Light and Lamp under a bushel.

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Didn’t mean to be too philosophical on a Monday morning, but it seems to me that the actual meaning of Christmas gets lost amidst the constant rush for consumers to consume anything and everything in a frenzied rush against a corporate calendar leading to a peak of bloated exhaustion.

Light Installations, MediaCityUK

Light Installations, MediaCityUK
iPhone 6s

This holiday season, I want to be happy and healthy and spend time with my family; three things that I have not always achieved individually or collectively at various points over the last 12 months.

So let there be light in the world, lets get back to the meaning of Christmas and let’s follow the star as it shines in the East.

The star that shines in the East Leica M 240 Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH 24sec, f4.0 ISO 200

The star that shines in the East
Leica M 240
Summilux-M 1:1.4/28 ASPH
24sec, f4.0 ISO 200

Let’s go to Positano

Let’s go to Positano.

That was the talk over breakfast.


Not again.

It may only be a 20 minute eight euro boat trip around the corner – but it may as well be another world away.

The sight of beautiful Amalfi slipping away in your wake can only give you something to long to return to later…

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Now I know we are tourists, not natives; travellers from another country. But we like to pretend otherwise, we like to sneak around the edges and sit round with the locals – well not in Positano; oh no.

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Let’s go to Positano?

Oh no not for me thanks – no port, no commerce, no locals, no lemons, no fishing boats, nothing in fact but tourists.

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Still, nice to take some snaps and mess around up hill and down dale; take a good look around as you won’t be seeing it again here.

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Who dear, me dear? No dear.


Wensleydale day out

The sun was shining and the wind was blowing, Masham sheep fair had been ticked off and it was a Sunday; it was time for a Wensleydale day out.

Bolton Castle always offers some amazing photographic opportunities; so this time we ventured into the castle as well as out and about walking between Aysgarth falls, Redmire and the surrounding lower Wensleydale rolling dale.

Looking towards Pen Hill, Lower Wensleydale from Bolton Castle

Looking towards Pen Hill, Lower Wensleydale from Bolton Castle

What a great place to visit, if you live round the corner like us, or you are coming from farther afield – Wensleydale is absolutely beautiful, unspoilt and full of interesting history.

Bolton Castle, Wensleydale

Bolton Castle, the perfect place to start a Wensleydale day out.

It’s not the first time I have featured Castle Bolton, bit on a sunny day like this, there is no better place to be with my Leica.

I hope you like my pictures.

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A Proper London Day Out

It was always going to be a long day; so much to see and so much to do, we needed to plan carefully and with military precision.

We promised ourselves a proper London day out; and we definitely got one!


A proper London day out!

The early morning train, tube ride and coffee stops on the way out East to the O2 Arena, Emirates airline to (nowhere really) and amazing views back towards the city and Canary wharf.

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The Emirates Air-Line is a pretty nifty cable car, it certainly gives you some height, rising straight up to 90m and a wonderful view of London.

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Looking down onto the river we had a change of plan and the Thames river clipper service was a great last minute idea, taking time to swoop around between piers.

We gained a real tourist’s eye view of London as we chugged from the O2, past the Isle of Dogs, to Canary Wharf, Royal Naval college at Greenwich and the the Cutty Sark and under Tower Bridge before getting off at a busy Tate Modern pier.

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After pizza and posing in Paternoster Square (Dinner Date), a walk around St Paul’s Cathedral and back over Blackfriars bridge,  the fun continued with a stroll along the embankment, past the OXO tower and sand sculptures of Kevin Spacey to the South Bank, National Theatre, skate-parks and eventually the London Eye amidst the thronging crowds and street performers.

A proper London Day Out

A proper London Day Out

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The London Eye never fails to impress – it’s at least ten years since I have been on this amazing cartwheel, and it’s as good now as it ever was.

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That’s enough for one day!

Onto the tube, up to Kings Cross, a drink or two and a train home, phew!

Ripley Show gets better every year

Last year we went to Ripley Show for the first time, it was fantastic and we made a date for the calendar to be there again in 2016.

Ripley Show gets better every year.

Well that date arrived, faster than you can say ‘organic produce’ so we packed up our picnic and made the most of another beautiful Yorkshire day; and I am proud to report that Ripley Show gets better every year.

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There’s something for everyone at Ripley Show

The cattle this year were amazing, this beautiful Aberdeen Angus was my favourite beast of the whole show, majestic and absolutely huge!

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The animals are great, especially the pigs and sheep, but the tractors and assorted old machinery are also well worth a look including the carriage driving and vintage cars.

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No excuse for many similar pictures to last year!

– all in a all great day out, Ripley Show gets better every year!

Ripley Show gets better every year

Ripley Show gets better every year

Well done to all the organisers, exhibitors and competitors.


2017 is already in the diary.

Flam is for tourists

Flam is for tourists, of that there is no doubt.

Anywhere that has a train that stops in a tunnel so you can get out, take pictures of a waterfall and be serenaded by some character dressed as a mythical legend with piped music has got to have tourism nailed right…….

But before the tourists, there were the locals, and you have to have some sympathy for them, because if I lived here, I would not want massive cruise ships coming up my Fjord.


Flam is for tourists

I wouldn’t want to be living here with this load of invaders; certainly Flam is for tourists, and it shouldn’t be!

Let’s start by leaving Bergen on a train…..

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Actually, you feel pretty relaxed after a lovely local train trundle from Bergen up through Voss and climbing over the mountains to the railway station and junction of the regional mainline at Myrdal; unaware of the tourism honeytrap you are about to encounter.


Opened in 1908 this little station is where it all happens (at 866 metres above sea level). Looking back at our visit to the amazing Jungfrau railway in August 2013, makes me realise that this is really nothing compared to that 3,454m station – Transfer from the regional red train to the tourist green one – and off you go!

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From here, the famous Flåm Railway winds its way down to the tourism mecca of the fjord below.

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It’s hard not to get caught up in the tourist shots; ‘Norway in a Nutshell’ seems to be designed for the sort of traveller who wants to see the entire country in 24 hours while in a sprawling queue behind an iPad waving umbrella holding tour guide, helping them from ship to shore, to train to hotel to plane. Not for me thanks.

Norway in a Nutshell…..No thanks!

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You see; it could be a nice place without the tourists. But with a major travel interchange big enough to welcome the QE2 and load them on a big train, then sadly the only way to enjoy the area is to get on a boat and out of town, up the Fjord.

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Now we are getting somewhere!

taking a regular ferry up the fjord with a cup of coffee and your camera is the way to really take in the scene for a few hours; so after we packed up and stored our bags away, it was time for the highlight of the week so far –  the fjord tour and cheese making…


Fjordcruise Nærøyfjorden

We start off with a little bus through amazing tunnels to Gudvangen; this was only built 20 years ago and until then this part of the world was cut off by road and only accessible by boat!


From Gudvangen we jumped on to the 10.30 ferry/boat out up the Fjord and were soon sailing past Styvi and Dyrdal, getting to Undredal after an hour and a half; a very pleasant cruise.

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We hopped of in Undredal and were met by a guide; a super local chap.

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He took us on a tour of village and the highlight was a look inside the amazing church.

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Undredal Stave Church (Norwegian: Undredal stavkyrkje) is a stave church in Aurland Municipality in Sogn og Fjordane county, on the shore of the Aurlandsfjorden.

The church is part of the Undredal parish in the Indre Sogn deanery in the Diocese of Bjørgvin.[1][2]

The church is only 12 by 4 metres (39 by 13 ft) and has only 40 seats, making it the smallest stave church still in use in all of Scandinavia. The parish only includes one small, rather isolated valley, with only 116 parishioners, making it the second smallest parish in the Diocese of Bjørgvin.[3]

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Ostesmaking (cheese tasting and explanation) was all very good in the village, I can see why they were happy to be cut off until 1989 when the tunnel and road was built!


Soon it was time to be back on the bus to Flam. (Sadly) And after a look in the railway museum, pick up our bags, have a coffee and then get back on the Flam Express to connect for Oslo train later.

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While waiting to board it was good to chat with some elderly American fellow travellers, on a three week Scandinavian mini tour they have also taken in St Petersburg (jealous now)!

The scenery on this late afternoon trip was superb from our reserved seats on the Myrdal -Oslo leg – a 4.5 hour spectacular over the mountains and down to our final destination.


Itmay not be Switzerland but i don’t think I have been on a more stunning (regular) train ride in such comfort at such altitude.

Even better, unlike Northern Rail, the hotel emailed a menu through and we ordered some snacks and beer for our 10.30pm Oslo arrival – now that is pretty cool!


All in all, a pretty good couple of days – despite the tourists!

Tip for next time – avoid at all costs and take to the hills!


next stop….Oslo.



Beadnell Sands and Seahouses

We stayed with some friends near Seahouses at the weekend – in North Sunderland, Northumberland.

The scenery around Beadnell Sands and Seahouses is beautiful; well worth a trip. I hope you enjoy these photographs of beadnell Sands and Seahouses.

Beadnell is Beautiful

Beadnell is Beautiful

Beadnell Village is set at the end of a glorious stretch of beach known as Beadnell Bay. The Village is well known as one of the best equipped places in the County for watersports, with the beach lending itself well to surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing, sailing, scuba diving…. the list goes on.
The Village’s harbour lies at the North end of the bay and from there the beach, backed by huge dunes of sand, stretches South for miles. The sheer volume of holiday accommodation in Beadnell means that it is one of the most popular destinations for visitors on the coast.

Walking along the bay from Seahouses to the Craster Arms in Beadnell opens up four miles of glorious Northumbrian countryside

Beadnell from Seahouses Golf Club

Beadnell from Seahouses Golf Club

The Village itself is split, between the area around the harbour and the Village nearer the main road. The harbour area is distinctive as it is the only West-facing harbour on the East coast and has beautiful lime kilns that were built in the 18th Century. Nice.
The images below include many taken at the Craster Arms Beadnell Beer festival – a fantastic venue and event that we enjoyed with family and friends, certainly the four mile walk back to North Sunderland was interesting after tasting a few local tipples.
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Alnwick Castle is a fantastic day out!

Alnwick Castle is a fantastic day out! Having not been here since I was a small child, I was pleasantly surprised by how much there was to see and do here – and I am not even a Harry Potter fan.

Alnwick Castle is a fantastic day out!

Alnwick Castle is a fantastic day out!

The Castle is in fantastic condition and still lived in half of the year by the Duke of Northumberland and his family. You are not allowed to take photographs inside but there is plenty to see outside with activities and demonstrations ranging from archery to falconry.

Harry Potter Broomstick flying lessons

Harry Potter Broomstick flying lessons



Alnwick Castle is a fantastic day out!

There are photo opportunities for young and old – even if you don’t need a lesson on flying your broomstick, you can’t help but be charmed by this magical place and the effort the staff obviously put into their work in entertaining visitors young and old.

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One man and his dog

We were invited to our old neighbours birthday party back in Cheshire a long time ago; the date finally arrived and our stay in Bollington proved to be special in many ways.
These pictures of one man and his dog are for you, Mike!

One man and his dog

One man and his dog

One man and his dog

We wish you a very happy 70th birthday, it was so good to see you and celebrate the the ‘three score and ten’ landmark.

Unaccustomed as I am to public speaking...

Unaccustomed as I am to public speaking…

One man and his dog

One man and his dog

One man and his dog

One man and his dog

and big love to all of our lovely ex-neighbours!

Johny & Christina

Johny & Christina

Chris and Chris

Chris and Chris

Mike, Tish and Sweep

Mike, Tish and Sweep

Sue and John

Sue and John

Alex and Kate

Alex and Kate

Well done to Tansy, Tish and Sue and John for all your hard work!

Tansy and Peter

Tansy and Peter

70 is the new 50

70 is the new 50

Thanks for a great party, the best hosts, fantastic food, the dogs running around and enough drink to sink a battleship!

One man and his dog

One man and his dog

But most of all, love to you Mike (and George who would have been watching down on us) and all our ex-neighbours; we won’t leave it another two years before retuning to Happy Valley!


Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim, Norway

We set off on an eight day Nordic Odyssey and our first port of call was the Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim, Norway.

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

If you find yourself in Trondheim, this is the place to stay!

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Lovely bar and decking on the roof

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Clarion Congress Hotel, Trondheim

Just testing – these images were taken on a Leica M with both a 28mm and 50mm Summilux ASPH-M Lenses.

Much more to follow in a variety of Norway blog posts…

from the hotel website

Clarion Hotel & Congress Trondheim is one of Scandinavia’s largest convention hotels, located close to the harbour in central Trondheim.


The hotel enjoys a perfect location on Brattorkaia, right at the harbour. Our neighbours are two of Trondheim’s main attractions: Pirbadet – Norway’s largest pool complex and Rockheim – Norway’s national pop and rock experience centre. At Brattørkaia by the Pirterminalen Pier Terminal and Tollboden, you’ll stay within walking distance of central Trondheim, with excellent views of the Trondheim Fjord.

The hotel

Clarion Hotel & Congress Trondheim offers 400 rooms, 18 meeting rooms, a conference area of 3,000 m2, 300 parking spaces and exciting dining concepts. Ideal for meetings, conferences, seminars, events and functions in Trondheim. The hotel is a spectacular experience for you as a visitor, with its innovative architecture and exciting interior, built in energy class A.

A vibrant meeting point in Trondheim

Inspirational for overnight guests and city locals alike. Clarion Hotel & Congress is Trondheim’s new, vibrant meeting point and offers a varied programme of concerts, lectures and exhibitions. Not many bars compare to our Skybar on the top floor, with its magical view of Munkholmen.

Food and beverages

Our Skybar and Astrum restaurant with its exciting culinary concept are on the 9th floor, with a roof terrace covering a full 190 m2. Magical views of the fjord and city are yours to enjoy.

Confirmation, christening or wedding?

We offer a large range of meeting facilities for hire, for private events such as confirmations, christenings, weddings or birthday parties. Astrum Grill & Raw Bar has a fantastic view and is a unique place to celebrate anniversaries in Trondheim. We are flexible and can help organise delicious dinners and meeting facilities tailored to your requirements.


Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Some images from the Italian lakes this week;  wake up and smell the coffee.

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

A tour day trip to attend a conference with colleagues from around the globe is a great excuse to visit the last of the Italian lakes to evade me to date.

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

View from the terrace.
Hotel Grand Dino; Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Baveno, Lake Maggiore is beautiful!

Don’t take my word for it; here is the official blurb from their tourism site.

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Baveno, Lake Maggiore

Baveno is situated on the most panoramic point of Lake Maggiore; on the hills which slope gently to the banks and the blue expanse of water, with the beautiful view of the Borromeo Islands in front. Its beauty and peace, on account of its smiling charm and favoured position form such a restful and peaceful corner. In addition to its natural beauties, charming villas, picturesque alleys and gardens which diffuse their sweet fragrance around, Baveno offers the great convenience of all sort of accommodation, supplied with every comfort for the pleasure and well-being of their guests.

Every year in July in Baveno take place the music Festival dedicated to the composer Umberto Giordano who used to spend his holiday at Villa Fedora, today a public park.

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OK that’s eight and a half hours in conference, time for a few more snaps now and a gulp of fresh air….

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Ich bin ein Berliner

This is my Berlin Blog, March 2016

No apology for over 200 images here; because four days of hard walking around this amazing city we last visited ten years ago proves Ich bin ein Berliner.

And I can tell you with my longest blog post since I started, there really is no place like it.

Armed with a 4-day Berlin travel card purchased at the airport (the best 35 Euro you can spend), we arrived in Berlin centre on the train, trundling our bags down  Friedrichstraße to the Westin Grand Berlin and then straight out on the tourist trail to Checkpoint Charlie.



Checkpoint Charlie

This is where East meets West, or used to at least, more likely now tourist meets museum and gift shop.
Checkpoint Charlie

Checkpoint Charlie

The museum and remnants of the Berlin wall are a stark reminder of how hard it must have been to be a Berliner in decades not so long ago – a remarkable juxtaposition amid the commercial hustle and bustle of  a modern capital city.

 Having taken that in, turning off to the West, we walked past the amazing Trabi-World museum and shop, a good place to take a tour of Berlin driving your very own historical transport as part of a Trabi safari tour

Moving on from the fun, we re-visited a spectacle that was far from it’s present state ten years ago – an amazing complex now that was little more than a series of trenches next to an original portion of the Berlin wall;

The Topography of Terror.

Topography of Terror Documentation Center More than one million people visited the "Topography of Terror" in 2015, making the documentation center one of the most frequently visited places of remembrance in Berlin

Topography of Terror Documentation Center
More than one million people visited the “Topography of Terror” in 2015, making the documentation centre one of the most frequently visited places of remembrance in Berlin  

More than one million people visited the “Topography of Terror” in 2015, making the documentation centre one of the most frequently visited places of remembrance in Berlin; there is a link to the site here.

Nothing prepares you for the horrors in this area, so I will let the pictures do the talking, an amazing part of the city that also includes an equally striking monument and historically significant building a little further away

The Jewish Museum Berlin

The Jewish Museum Berlin

The Berlin Jewish Museum

This is a superb museum and well worth a visit. located here, the museum takes you above and below ground. The Museum opened in September 2001. Two years earlier, the empty new building by architect Daniel Libeskind was an unexpected visitor attraction. In this section, we present the building complex in image and text: The Old Building – the baroque Collegienhaus, the postmodern Libeskind Building, the Glass Courtyard erected in 2007, and the new Academy opened in 2012. The circumstances of the museum’s foundation, thecollections it is based on, and the people who have directed its development can be found here as well as personalities of public life who are dedicated to intercultural understanding and have been honored with the Jewish Museum’s Prize for Understanding and Tolerance.

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The Jewish Museum Berlin

The Jewish Museum Berlin

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Potsdamer Platz

Emerging from the museum, night had fallen and it was time for a beer and some homely german food at Potsdamer Platz, the new centre of Berlin.
Renzo Piano and Helmut Jahn proposed the winning master plans. Investors Daimler-Benz (today Daimler) and Sony backed the two visions. The Piano/Daimler-Benz project envisioned a more diverse European style area with narrower streets while Helmut Jahn’s Sony vision presented the more uniform ultra-modern glass-steel plaza which became the Sony Centre.
The vast covered public space with its striking glass roof was the result of a remarkable engineering feat – an outstretched tent roof with material fastened to a steel ring attached to the adjacent buildings.
The Panorama Punkt with an observation deck 93 meters high is reached by elevator for the best all-round view of the area in the brown-brick Kollhoff building.
This is a great spot for  a beer and pickled herrings…
IMG_6831 IMG_6832 IMG_6833 L1004364 Another day of sightseeing comes to an end, soon it would be time for the undisputed best breakfast in Berlin – Eggs Benedict at Cafe Einstein.
Look no further than this cafe, 2 mins walk from the Brandenburg Gate at
Unter Den Linden 42.
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 Time to get the bus then, number 100 and off through the park from the Brandenburg Gate over to see my hero Helmut Newton

Museum für Fotografie

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 The  Photography Museum is a splendid place to spend a couple of hours, located here.
The Helmut Newton exhibition and private collection of belongings is truly spectacular, sadly no photos allowed inside so I had to sneak a couple…
On to the shopping district and the fantastic…

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church

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 And then of course into the largest department store in Berlin – where coffee, cakes and foods from around the world make it very hard to leave that top floor;

KaDeWe, or

Kaufhaus des Westens

to give it the full name…

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Before the 100 bus back to the hotel, its time for some low light classic Berlin night time photography
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 Saturday morning, time for the train out to the Eastern corridor walk along the river – and some serious street art

East Side Gallery

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 Take the train back to Alexanderplatz for some shopping and a good old demo – its the Kurdish march and protest, starting off from under the TV mast.
Just like a Bourne movie…..
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Not far from here is another fantastic museum – the DDR Museum, every reason you ever needed for communism not taking off the way Joseph and his mates planned.


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Berlin Royal Palace

This reconstruction of a the huge Berlin Royal Palace is an amazing feat and dominates the skyline 65 years after it was demolished
The temporary 5 storey Humboldt Box gives you some great views of the capital, especially the amazing Cathedral and museum island – with a skyline dominated by cranes.
Time for some more homely german food –
IMG_6873home via the off-licence, conveniently located on platform one….
And onto Sunday morning, another Cafe Einstein and then way out East on the train to


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L1004470 L1004471 L1004472 L1004473 L1004474 L1004475 L1004476 L1004477 L1004478 L1004479 L1004480 L1004482 L1004483 L1004484 L1004485 One of the best Flea-Markets you will ever find!
and where there is a flea market, there is music!
Rupert’s Kitchen Orchestra where an essential part of this Sunday morning experience. Great sound.
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 Thats about it, four days of walking, snapping and eating sausages, I hope you liked this tour of Berlin, please let me have your thoughts; here are some further images to end with.
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Thanks for the sausages….

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Ich bin ein Berliner

Ich bin ein Berliner