9781838861681“From the psychedelic salt mines of Yekaterinburg in Siberia to the rugged, green-tinted Copper Canyon in the Sierra Madre in Mexico, Hidden Places roams across the globe in search of hidden treasures and secret places off the beaten track. Explore the Silfra Deep Trench in Iceland, where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet to create a remarkable rift and freshwater dive site; experience the weirdest of woodland walks through the Crooked Forest in Pomerania, Poland, where a grove of 400 pines are uniformly curved; marvel at the colourful, gold-plated temple of Doi Suthep in northern Thailand; or visit the world’s highest sand dune, Grande Dune du Pilat, on the Bordeaux coast. Each location is accompanied by a caption explaining the geography and history of the place. Illustrated with 180 colour photographs, Hidden Places ranges from the sparse landscape of the Arctic Circle to the rich rainforests of the Amazon basin. Read this book and discover the special, hidden places that will come to define your bucket list – many of which are much closer to home than you think.”

My Review

This book is packed full of gorgeous photographs and short explanations about the so many different places around the world, some I’d heard of but many I hadn’t.

Did you know that the most southerly Hindu temple can be found in Punta Arenas, in Chile, and that there is also a thriving Croatian community there too, established in the 19th century! I’d never heard or thought about the fact that there might be a surfing community in Norway, or that on Spitsbergen Island you must legally carry a rifle for protection against polar bears!!

Some of my favourite photos are of the windmills in Estonia, the pink granite lighthouse in Brittany, France, a lava cave in Lanzarote in the Canary islands and the amazing Devil’s Bridge in Gablenz in Germany.

Highly recommended!


Japan_Bundle_thumb“From shrines to megacities, from paddy fields to high speed trains to the latest in digital technology, Japan is a fascinating mix of the ancient and modern, of East and West. Featuring castles and hot springs, remote volcanic islands and intense high-rise cities, delicate tea ceremonies and busy cities, medieval bridges and modern flyovers, Japan presents 200 outstanding colour photographs depicting a wide range in perspectives on Japanese life. From farming to engineering, from war memorials to the devastation of the Tohoku tsunami and Fukushima nuclear disaster, from the beauty of Kyoto to the bustle of Tokyo, a great many sides to the Land of the Rising Sun are explored. Presented in a landscape format and with captions explaining the story behind each entry, Japan is a stunning collection of images celebrating the world’s most vibrant country. “

My Review

This is another fab travel book from Amber Books, this time all about Japan, another place I’ve never visited, but would like to.

There are some beautiful photos in this book revealing so many parts of Japan that I didn’t know about. For instance did you know that there are 6,852 islands in its archipelago, but only 430 are inhabited?

I loved the beautiful photograph of the striped flower gardens at Shikisai-no-aka, Bei, Hokkaido. I’d love to see those if I visited Japan, as well as of course the infamous cherry blossom! There were also gorgeous photos of the turquoise seas surrounding the islands not something I would connect with modern Japan.

The living history village of Noboribetsu sounded fascinating as did the  sand baths on a beach in Ibusuki, on Nagasaki. The town is geothermally heated by a hot spring running underneath the beach! A fun fact about the food on the island of Okinawa is that it’s heavily influenced by the American air base with Spam incorporated into lots of dishes!  

Definitely recommended if your heading to Japan or you’re a keen armchair traveller!

Thanks to Amber Books and NetGalley for my digital copies