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Posts tagged reviews

III Draakon

III Draakon

III Draakon in Tallinn, Estonia is a fun restaurant for time travel. The food is good and relatively inexpensive too. Read the menu outside as it isn’t posted inside. Once inside, you are transported back to a medieval cafeteria. After ordering the serving wench asks for a certain number of “moneys” and of course you pay in Euros.

The bowls and cups frequently are partially broken. In addition, the costumed employees all stay in character. One of them ran out to try and kill a pigeon that landed on the table. She was screaming and seemed to be literally trying to KILL the pigeon. The customer at the table was horrified, but it brought a big smile to my face.

The reviews on the internet are hilarious because many customers seem to not understand that the employees are in character. They fault the place for rude employees, unhelpful service, or that you have to use your hands to eat. If some of the customers weren’t so dumb this place would have a perfect 5/5 rating.

Houses and Gardens of Kyoto

@aniklasson @TuttleBooks

Houses and Gardens of Kyoto is a coffee table book with more than just gorgeous photos. The descriptions, history, and details provided next to the photos are excellent as well. While there is little to complain about, I do like to point out areas for improvement in even the finest books I review.

First, I would have enjoyed larger photos, even if that meant reducing the total number of photos. The full page photographs are lovely, but many of the postcard or (even worse) stamp-sized photos are simply too little to be much appreciated.

Second, I liked how the photographer (Akihiko “Alan” Seki) edited the images, straightening the distortions that photography creates when architecture is captured. He didn’t overdo things. The photos look natural and not HDRed (perhaps because this was published before the HDR era). However, (and most people who aren’t photographers won’t even notice this but) there are some blown highlights that didn’t have to happen and the occasional indoor flash usage is not nearly as nice looking as the naturally lit interiors.

This is a great book, especially if you have been to Kyoto or are going at some point.

Finally, if there are any authors out there who need a photographer to do a similar book (especially in Japan!) hit me up.

A Manga Lover’s Tokyo Travel Guide: My Favorite Things to See and Do In Japan

A Manga Lover's Tokyo Travel Guide: My Favorite Things to See and Do In Japan

@aniklasson @TuttleBooks @evacomics

A great book for kids or adults heading to Japan for the first time, or who want to reminisce about their time in Tokyo, I read the entire thing on a less-than-two-hour flight this past weekend. The pictures are fun, the facts are accurate, and the suggestions will lead to discoveries (or enjoyable memories) for anyone and everyone.

My daughter (now 21), who lived in Tokyo for a year when she was 11 years old, read much of A Manga Lover’s Tokyo Travel Guide: My Favorite Things to See and Do In Japan when she saw it on the nightstand in our hotel room. When she finished looking at it she exclaimed, “I wish there was a book like this for Ecuador!”. She is heading to Ecuador, for the first time, for a month or so on a study abroad in a couple months.

Nice work, Evangeline Neo!

Stockholm Bike Tour

stockholm bike tour cykel tor simonsson

Stockholm

#stockholm #sweden @visitstockholm @VisitSwedenUS #VisitSweden

In the summer of 2017 I went on an awesome bike tour of Stockholm courtesy of Tor and Kerstin Simonsson of Stockholm Cykel. Two of us signed up. The other person, who I didn’t know, couldn’t ride a bike so it was just me and Tor. Tor was awesome. The bike was excellent. Unlike a typical bike tour, where you are “stuck” with a bunch of other tourists going to the same places as everyone else doing a bike tour, Tor’s tour avoided most of the touristy spots and was very personal.

Today’s photo comes from part of our ride. I’ve been to Stockholm three times, and 99% of what I saw on this tour I had never seen before. Highly recommended.

Cool Tokyo Guide

This fun, little guidebook by Abby Denson is aimed primarily at young people (10-25 years old), but has useful aspects for anyone. I would have liked a little more dealing with the seasons and festivals (when to go to see certain things in Tokyo) and less on where to buy souvenirs.

The book contains many useful phrases and helpful hints. The information on ibuprofen is incorrect though. Ringl is not ibuprofen in Japan. Ringl is the same as Tylenol (acetaminophen). If you need Advil or Motrin in Tokyo (or any part of Japan), use the information on this page instead.

I love Case Logic!

Over six years ago I blogged about the Case Logic DCB-308 SLR Camera Sling Backpack. Since then my Case Logic backpack has been on countless hikes, traveled to Japan, Korea, Mexico, Denmark, Norway, Germany, Czech Republic, Sweden, the UK, Hawaii, the Grand Canyon, etc. My bag has been extensively used, causing a few minor items to wear out. As I was about to purchase a new bag for my summer travels I emailed Case Logic to see if they’ve upgraded the DCB-308. They responded saying they haven’t but that my bag is still under warranty, and they will send me a new one. WHAT?!?! I purchased this bag over six years ago. How can it still be under warranty? It turns out the Case Logic warranty is 25 years!!!

Updating my prior review…
1) You can fit a DSLR with a 70-200mm f/4 lens attached (and still have room for an additional lens or lunch) in the main compartment.
2) The “hidden” side compartment is extraordinary for smuggling things into concerts, sporting events, etc. Security never checks it. The compartment holds two bottles, five cans, or three cans and one bottle.

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