Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

From Honolulu we flew to Hawaii’s Big Island (also called Hawaii) to visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Hawaiian Islands were formed by lava flowing from a hot spot under the Pacific Ocean, and the Park preserves and guides you to volcanic eruptions and lava flows.

Shown above, a plume of volcanic gases rises from Halemaumau Crater within the much larger Kilauea crater. Halemaumau Crater is about a half-mile (800 m) wide with a lava lake inside.

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Walks Along the Seine

We visited Paris in April, renting an apartment in the Marais, two blocks from the Seine and Île Saint-Louis. The banks of the Seine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, has some great walks. We walked a lot, crossing the Seine visiting places missed on earlier trips.

Here’s a map with our Paris activities; our apartment’s near the center.

our 2016 Paris vacation
our 2016 Paris vacation

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Ha Long Bay

After two days in Hanoi, we traveled to Ha Long Bay and spent a night on a cruise boat. With its many limestone peaks sticking out from the bay, and Ha Long Bay is an UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Li River near Guilin, China, has similar limestone peaks. We enjoyed Ha Long Bay much more because boats could spread out in the Bay, while the Li River was a continuous stream of boats down the river.

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Siem Reap and Prasat Lolei

From Luang Prabang, we flew to Siem Reap, Cambodia, where the Khmer erected over a thousand temples from the 9th to the 15th century. Angkor Wat is the most famous of these temples. This region of Khmer temples is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

We joined a photography tour led by a former photographer for National Geographic. This small group worked out extremely well: covering a lot of ground, waking up early for sunrise photos, and getting along.

Only temples remain from the Khmer empire. Only religious building were built of stone and brick, and many of these have survived. Non-religious building were built of wood, and these have not survived the centuries. We’ll discuss temples by architectural period, starting with the earliest, called the Roluos Group.

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