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collecting countries


terratin
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9 hours ago, terratin said:

 

Yeah, sounds more difficult for you. Sorry :sunsure: I could still spend my summer vacation on one of the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man (or Greenland, should I suddenly get stinking rich). Got beaches, possibly sunny. Just not warm :lol:

 

A few years back when I added Iceland, Svalbard and a few other places to my countries list, I considered a side trip to Greenland, but with all flight costs taken into account (NZ-UK-Ireland-Canada-Iceland-Svalbard-UK-NZ), it would have increased the budget by at least a third just to nip up to Greenland and back from London.  Another time, lol.

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image.png.4183aab39a76d20acffd7f4e0c840799.png

No new countries for me since Luxembourg and Greece in 2019 but a road trip to the Scottish border in Jul / Aug 2021, Cornwall this May and S Wales this August mean that England is completed as a family (that's me, Oxford Stone Junior with his separate account and the long-suffering Mrs OS, who specialises in spotting caches in ivy-covered trees from the path, just as the "experts" have given up a fingertip search); I also drove to Edinburgh for work in March and got 2 more counties up there (and a furthest north). The project-gc map has much smaller (and up-to-date) counties in central Scotland and S Wales but I'm being lazy and using these mygeocachingprofile ones. Looks like a holiday to North Wales (home of the world's fastest zipwire...) next year?

We also got French provinces Normandy and Brittany in July (and drilling down a level, 4 départements) and I added Murcia in Spain on a work trip. 

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Arrived home last night after being away for six weeks in France, Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Was able to add France and Morocco to my tally as I already had Spain and Portugal due to a MSC cruise in late 2019. Had a stopover in Doha, Qatar, yesterday where I was able to add another find which was right next to my hotel. It was too hot to chase any more as my luggage was shipped straight through to Sydney so no change of clothes. Have a couple of irks to post too from my Morocco experience.

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Project Fryslân planned for November. Few nights on the left red island, then a few nights in Leeuwarden with a visit to the right island, and the remaining missing municipalities will happen at various times during this trip :) Also planned a visit to the oldest still operational planetarium in the world and a pumping station on the UNESCO list, and a surprise concert in the middle of nowhere in yet another historical pumping station. Plus I'll hopefully visit all remaining ECs apart from 2 or so that require a special boat charter or waddensea walk. :)Sounds like a perfect trip :) Now lets see what the weather is doing.
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This summer was crazy, over the course of 3.5 months I interrailed through almost half of Europe (with pauses in between) and visited 20 countries, from which 17 I never cached in before. There were a lot of awesome caches on the way!

 

In chronological order: Switzerland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Liechtenstein, Italy, Vatican State, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia.

 

Now the only big area I'm still missing in Europe are the Balkan states, sadly train service there isn't that great. :(

europe_cache_countries.PNG

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On 10/11/2022 at 10:01 AM, Kadse1337 said:

This summer was crazy, over the course of 3.5 months I interrailed through almost half of Europe (with pauses in between) and visited 20 countries, from which 17 I never cached in before. There were a lot of awesome caches on the way!

 

In chronological order: Switzerland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Liechtenstein, Italy, Vatican State, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia.

 

Now the only big area I'm still missing in Europe are the Balkan states, sadly train service there isn't that great. :(

europe_cache_countries.PNG

 

Wow, what an amazing trip! For the Balkan countries bus services are really good and super affordable. Went from Montenegro to Dubrovnik and Mostar this summer and payed about 25 Euro and 40 Euro for a return, bought hours before the trip thus cheaper should be possible. It's not comfortable, and crossing borders takes ages as everyone needs to get off the bus when exiting, wait for everyone and the bus to pass through, get on again, repeat upon entering the new country. Also, buying the tickets is a bit of a hassle. If you're lucky you find someone at a bus station who speaks English (not very likely). Otherwise if you buy online you usually need to print the tickets somewhere. But I'm kind of considering traveling to the remaining Balkan countries this way.

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On 10/11/2022 at 11:01 AM, Kadse1337 said:

This summer was crazy, over the course of 3.5 months I interrailed through almost half of Europe (with pauses in between) and visited 20 countries, from which 17 I never cached in before. There were a lot of awesome caches on the way!

 

In chronological order: Switzerland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Liechtenstein, Italy, Vatican State, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia.

 

Now the only big area I'm still missing in Europe are the Balkan states, sadly train service there isn't that great. :(

europe_cache_countries.PNG
I've had AK 47 ordered from Czech(VZ), always wanted to visit some of their facilities. Might pay 'em a visit one day!

3.5 months for all of this?! That's hella impressive!

Edited by Oneily88
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One could be jealous of those who live where countries are small and it is relatively easy to go from one to the other.  On my trips to Europe (before geocaching) it amazed me how easy it was to travel between countries.  
 

In the USA we have to be content with adding states and if you live in the east it is much easier than in the west.

 

But one geocaches where one lives and plans trips to add interest to our hobby/sport/activity/pastime.

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6 hours ago, Smitherington said:

One could be jealous of those who live where countries are small and it is relatively easy to go from one to the other.  On my trips to Europe (before geocaching) it amazed me how easy it was to travel between countries.  
 

In the USA we have to be content with adding states and if you live in the east it is much easier than in the west.

 

But one geocaches where one lives and plans trips to add interest to our hobby/sport/activity/pastime.

But at least you can drive over a border to another country.  No so downunder 

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4 hours ago, Gill & Tony said:

But at least you can drive over a border to another country.  No so downunder 

Yes, I drove almost 18,000 kms last car trip here in Australia. Didn't get any new countries. My guess, all those listing their country finds don't drive anything close to that. Best I can aim for are counties. Got a lot of new counties this trip, but still a lot more to log. Next month I should get some more of those on my next trip. Ticked off the Australian states years ago. In the USA I was amazed how small the states are, and could easily drive through several in a day. Most states in Australia are too big for an easy day drive.

Basically, for size, European countries are equivalent to our states, or even counties/shires. USA states are somewhere between our states and counties for size. If I had been caching then, I would have ticked off more USA states, when I drove from Washington DC down to Florida and across to California, but I had never heard of Geocaching then. Shame :D.

Still have a lot of counties to find; some in remote places, that I will likely never get to, even presuming there might be a cache there to log.

image.png.be643b616ef5b909378fb9d9f169bab5.png

 

Done much better for NZ.

 

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Edited by Goldenwattle
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4 hours ago, Goldenwattle said:

Yes, I drove almost 18,000 kms last car trip here in Australia. Didn't get any new countries.

 

I was lucky that soon after I started caching I attended a wedding in New Zealand and was able to make a few finds while there (I even took the groom out caching on the morning of the ceremony, much to his amusement). So far my only Australian caching outside NSW was on a winter escape holiday to the Queensland Sunshine Coast in 2018. There's a nearby challenge cache that was published recently that I'm keen to qualify for, but it requires finds on four D2/T4 caches in each of four Australian states plus two outside Australia, so I'll probably have another trip to New Zealand coming up. The interstate ones will have to wait until the la Nina ends as I don't want to plan driving trips away only to have it rain the whole time (which is more likely than not at the moment).

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17 hours ago, Smitherington said:

One could be jealous of those who live where countries are small and it is relatively easy to go from one to the other.  On my trips to Europe (before geocaching) it amazed me how easy it was to travel between countries.  

 

What's also great is that you don't even have to drive yourself. You can go pretty much everywhere in Europe with trains and busses, and not even be stopped for more than a few minutes when passing borders (unless it's a Schengen border). Makes everything even easier and leaves more time for geocaching & sightseeing :grin:

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Got my first caches in another country this past weekend! I was in London with friends and took a few hours out of my day to get a few geocaches, six in all, including a webcam cache which we have none of in Ireland. I'd love to go for a bigger cache romp around Europe, especially because of the open borders. 

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2 hours ago, Kadse1337 said:

What's also great is that you don't even have to drive yourself. You can go pretty much everywhere in Europe with trains and busses, and not even be stopped for more than a few minutes when passing borders (unless it's a Schengen border). Makes everything even easier and leaves more time for geocaching & sightseeing

As long as you're in European Union right? Would imagine going into Eastern part would still require some checks at the border?

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12 minutes ago, Oneily88 said:

As long as you're in European Union right? Would imagine going into Eastern part would still require some checks at the border?

The question is not European Union or not, it's Schengen Area or not. Schengen is a contractual area made of 26 EU and non-EU countries that have abolished regular border controls between their countries. You normally only get checked more thoroughly once; when entering the Schengen area. All central-, northern- and western-European countries are part of the Schengen Area (besides UK & Ireland). But yeah, the Balkan states below Hungary/Slovenia are not (yet) part of Schengen except Greece.

 

When visiting Croatia (not in the Schengen Area) we had to get out of the Flixbus at the Slovenian/Croatian border and show our passports to the border guard.

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13 hours ago, Goldenwattle said:

Yes, I drove almost 18,000 kms last car trip here in Australia.

 A single car trip of 18k km? :antenna::yikes:  Wow, that's totally something I could not imagine! And especially with current petrol prices in Western Europe.
Ok, lets think thus through. My wee car does about 5l/100km on relaxed longer distance rides. So that's 900l. At currently gas prices we're talking about 1800 Euro just for gas :yikes:

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7 hours ago, terratin said:

 A single car trip of 18k km? :antenna::yikes:  Wow, that's totally something I could not imagine! And especially with current petrol prices in Western Europe.
Ok, lets think thus through. My wee car does about 5l/100km on relaxed longer distance rides. So that's 900l. At currently gas prices we're talking about 1800 Euro just for gas :yikes:

Not to mention it is 200 hours at an average speed of 90 km/h. That's 25 days behind the wheel if you can manage eight hours per day. Not much of a vacation, unless you really love driving.

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2 hours ago, ChriBli said:

Not to mention it is 200 hours at an average speed of 90 km/h. That's 25 days behind the wheel if you can manage eight hours per day. Not much of a vacation, unless you really love driving.

It is not uncommon for retirees in Australia to spend months travelling in a caravan or mobile home.  One couple I know (through caching - not personally) has been travelling for at least 2 years, caching as they go.  I know of people who have taken a year or so to drive right around Australia which is 15,000 Km without detours.

 

GoldenWattle's trip was probably 3 months or so.  6000 Km per month or 200 Km per day.  Not so bad

 

Edited by Gill & Tony
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15 hours ago, jaysonC said:

including a webcam cache which we have none of in Ireland.

We have four in Australia, but the closest one to me is over 400kms away. The next three are in SA; two in Adelaide which is 1,155kms away. On a recent trip I found the three in SA; my first Webcams. Still have the closest one, a mere 400+kms away to log.

Edited by Goldenwattle
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12 hours ago, terratin said:

 A single car trip of 18k km? :antenna::yikes:  Wow, that's totally something I could not imagine! And especially with current petrol prices in Western Europe.
Ok, lets think thus through. My wee car does about 5l/100km on relaxed longer distance rides. So that's 900l. At currently gas prices we're talking about 1800 Euro just for gas :yikes:

Not cheap, but our prices for petrol are cheaper.

4 hours ago, ChriBli said:

Not to mention it is 200 hours at an average speed of 90 km/h. That's 25 days behind the wheel if you can manage eight hours per day. Not much of a vacation, unless you really love driving.

I took three months to drive around Australia. Distances each day varied from under 200kms to just over 400kms. I preferred to keep to lower distances. I was the only driver, as I did the trip solo. Most of the roads were sealed and good. I did go off onto some dirt tracks occasionally. A quick scan through my photographs looking for road photographs.

1. Between Rockhampton and Mackay

Road.jpg

 

2. Mackay to Bowen

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3. Tully to Cairns

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4. Mount Surprise to Croyton (lots of roadworks in Queensland)

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5. Normanton to Cloncurry

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6. Mt Isa to Camooweal (I'm up the hill finding a cache)

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7. Camooweal to Warumunga (Three Ways) This was an over 400kms day, because the Barkly Hwy is...boring. Fortunately a speed limit of 130kms.

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Edited by Goldenwattle
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Threeways. Typical road house, with fuel, food, accommodation and camping. This is the type of place you stay, unless free camping. Road train delivering fuel.

 

Three Ways.jpg

 

Katherine to Timber Creek

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Timber Creek to Kununurra

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Kununurra to Halls Creek

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Petrol Station, Fitzroy Crossing (not somewhere I wanted to spend a lot of time in) Low aromatic fuel, as many petrol station have in this part of the country. It's to discourage petrol sniffing.

image.thumb.jpeg.29a725b03cb7c1ab3f3dda1d016a54f2.jpeg

 

Sandfire

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Port Hedland to Karratha

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Karratha to Nanutarra

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Nanutarra to Carnarvon (Airstrip on the road)

image.thumb.jpeg.646e47f37c7fa94a32250549bc7f868e.jpeg


 

 

Edited by Goldenwattle
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Last Europe trip I went on we did nearly 15000km and covered 34 countries: Netherlands, Germany (all states), Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Aland, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czechia, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, San Marino, Vatican, Switzerland, Lichtenstein, France, Luxembourg, Belgium.  No problems crossing any borders, only a brief wait at a couple of borders through the Balkans.  The car started out with 5km on the odometer.  Such an incredibly memorable trip.

Edited by funkymunkyzone
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11 hours ago, Goldenwattle said:

I took three months to drive around Australia. Distances each day varied from under 200kms to just over 400kms. I preferred to keep to lower distances. I was the only driver, as I did the trip solo. Most of the roads were sealed and good. I did go off onto some dirt tracks occasionally. A quick scan through my photographs looking for road photographs.

Who needs other countries, anyway? Great pictures, quite an adventure.

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Thanks Goldenwattle for the memory lane trip and great photos. My wife and I and our two sons would do long camping trips to the outback during school vacations. My wife kept a photolog and diary of where we went. One trip, in 1991 we covered 10,704klm in 19 days using 1224.76 litres of fuel at a cost of $933. This was done in our 1600cc Mitsubishi L300 van from our home near Newcastle to Darwin and Kunnanurra via Alice Springs and Mt Isa, We have done others just as long, if not longer.

 

Edited by colleda
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During my recent tour of France, Spain and Portugal I was amazed at the number of Reward Virtuals in many cities e.g. Madrid, Barcelona and Lisbon. Most of these virtuals were quick and easy which was a huge benefit when on an organised tour like mine which did not leave a lot of time for searching out Traditionals. I ignored Multis and Puzzles.

So thank you to all those Reward Virtual CO's.

One exception was Bordeaux where I found two virtuals but as Bordeaux was not  part of my tour, I had three days there to sight see, I was able to collect a few Traditionals.

I'm not sure when my next country souvenir will come from. For 2023 I have planned a cruise to Singapore via Indonesia and an Alaska Inside Passage cruise, places I have already been.  Next nearest countries to Oz are Papua New Guinea, almost zero chance of any there, and East Timor, not much better. perhaps an Antarctica cruise but that's prohibitively expensive.

 

 

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33 minutes ago, colleda said:

Next nearest countries to Oz are Papua New Guinea, almost zero chance of any there, and East Timor, not much better. perhaps an Antarctica cruise but that's prohibitively expensive.

I have a PNG Earthcache find I got on a cruise to there. (1 PNG find.) I have been thinking of an Antarctic cruise; one that you land with, but as you say prohibitively expensive. Especially for a solo traveller. My brother went there and took a TB with him I had picked up with a wish to go to the Antarctic. It got itself photographed several times in the Antarctic and visited a cache, so now has that on its map. After all that effort though, I was surprised and slightly put out by the lukewarm response from the TB owner.

I find that sometimes; the lukewarm response from some TB owners when you put yourself out to fulfil the TB's stated aim. I picked a TB up in the UK with a wish to go to a suburb in Sydney. I figured I could at least get it to Australia, but when I got home to Canberra I checked where the suburb was and found it wasn't too far from where my brother lived in Sydney, so decided to visit my brother and then drop the TB off in the actual suburb it wanted to go to. Then the fun started. All these micro caches (cache after cache of mintie tins) marked as smalls, when they are micros and wouldn't fit the TB. Finally I found a real small and left the TB. Lukewarm response from owner.

Then again, I took another TB, stated aim to visit every state in Australia, to every state and it had photographed at each with the state borders with the state/territory name. I was going to drop it off somewhere in Tasmania (last state to visit), but then decided it was only a bit of a detour in Victoria to take it to the TB hotel the CO wanted it to end up in. The TB hotel was on the front porch of a house and had individual decorated rooms for TBs. (A proper TB hotel, not just a box) I logged the find and was about to leave, but then decided to knock on the door. I explained to the older lady who answered who I was and that I had left her TB in the hotel. She grabbed and hugged me, and insisted I come in for afternoon tea. Then she insisted she take me to find her local caches. A lovely lady and not the lukewarm response of the others. She even wanted to offer me a bed, but I had already booked into and paid for a motel room.

 

Edited by Goldenwattle
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Just came back from a few weeks in Europe!

 

New Countries/Regions: 

  1. Germany
    • Hessen
    • Baden-Wurttemberg
    • Bayern
  2. France
    • Île-de-Franc
  3. United Kingdom
    • London
  4. Iceland
    • Capital Region
    • Southern Peninsula 

Had a great time and ended up with about 75 new caches (mostly Earthcaches and virtuals as I was attempting to make geocaching an unobtrusive part of the overall vacation). Although I've been to France, Germany and Iceland before (pre-caching days), the UK was a completely new country to me. 

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On 10/18/2022 at 8:58 AM, STNolan said:

Just came back from a few weeks in Europe!

 

New Countries/Regions: 

  1. Germany
    • Hessen
    • Baden-Wurttemberg
    • Bayern
  2. France
    • Île-de-Franc
  3. United Kingdom
    • London
  4. Iceland
    • Capital Region
    • Southern Peninsula 

Had a great time and ended up with about 75 new caches (mostly Earthcaches and virtuals as I was attempting to make geocaching an unobtrusive part of the overall vacation). Although I've been to France, Germany and Iceland before (pre-caching days), the UK was a completely new country to me. 

Oh I forgot technically Tyrol, Austria as well (Thank you Zugspitze!) 

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2 hours ago, HuggableHamster said:

We are hoping to go to the USA in 2028 to finish our JASMER grids…

I still need to get two;

December 2000. There is one of that date in Australia, and another in NZ.

February 2001. There are a few of those. Not heaps, but a few.

None near where I live thought, although the December one is only a bit over 500kms away, so I guess not that excessively far. Plus only 260kms from where I will be for Christmas. So maybe I will find it near Christmas.
 

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On 10/30/2022 at 3:28 PM, Goldenwattle said:

I just came upon a VERY well travelled geocacher. How's this for country finds? LOL, however, I have Iceland :laughing: and they haven't that yet.

 

image.jpeg.d9b2064c0a87a98ecc8051739a42fa2d.jpeg

 

Out of curiosity, how many is that?

 

My map isn't nearly as impressive, but partially because a lot of my countries are smaller than 1 pixel on the map so they don't show up.

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2 hours ago, funkymunkyzone said:

 

Out of curiosity, how many is that?

 

My map isn't nearly as impressive, but partially because a lot of my countries are smaller than 1 pixel on the map so they don't show up.

I can't remember who they were now, but it looks like from the map most, if not all countries, in Europe for starters.

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Now that the Covid Operation is in the endgame, I'm finally travelling again.  I just found one in Costa Rica, two in Panama (100% of both caches in this part of the country), and might snag another in Costa Rica on the way back.  Caches are thin on the ground here in Central America.

 

Next destination unknown, but will come from a shorter list of countries that're fully welcoming of visitors.  I almost omitted Panama because of the lingering masks mandate on public transport, but it turns out that's absolutely and completely ignored, even in front of the police, who don't care either.  :laughing:  So the water taxis are thirty minutes of wind in your hair: priceless :wub:, instead of thirty minutes of wind on your mask...

 

This bodes well for Malaysia, which is still theoretically masks-on-transport too.  I'm keen to re-visit, even if I've already "added" the country.  Oh the food!  Unfortunately, that would logically involve a long layover in Hong Kong, which I love, but HK is a basket case right now.  And if it's masks-on-the-plane (airlines are usually "by the book"), then no deal. There are other countries.  This trip to Central America has been 100% Covid-free, referring to any/all indignities added since 2019.  B)

 

Yeah, I'm opinionated. Not a "veiled attack" on an "idea" (check those guidelines occasionally folks!), but full support for another idea: spending your dollars/colones/pesos/ringgit where the bearer of those notes is also welcomed.  I look forward to supporting the next country that genuinely wants me to visit.

 

Edited by Viajero Perdido
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Today achieved my 3rd country! Hope to get a couple more later this week though with 57 caches in the whole country 1/57 is not bad.

 

Screen Shot 2022-12-22 at 11.53.14 PM.png

 

Got Canada #2 back in 2016, hopefully will get #4 much sooner.

 

The funny thing about the 2 I found in British Columbia was I drove there. I stated my purpose for visiting Canada upon return to the US was to get a couple of geocaches and that was suspicious enough to get my car searched. I spent longer getting my car searched by the customs than I actually spent in Canada that trip.
 

 

Edited by MNTA
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I just cleared out six more counties (or council areas as they are called here) in Sydney. I now have caches in all the 35 council areas in Sydney. The latest were found by train, light rail and ferry.

 

I also found caches in four council areas north of Sydney.

 

The ferry coming to pick me up from Hunters Hill council area, after finding a cache there. That was pleasant and scenic caching.

Ferry.jpg

Edited by Goldenwattle
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On 11/24/2022 at 12:53 AM, Goldenwattle said:

I just cleared out six more counties (or council areas as they are called here) in Sydney. I now have caches in all the 35 council areas in Sydney. The latest were found by train, light rail and ferry.

 

 

 

My bold. Not strictly correct. I live in Northumberland county which is made up from many councils from Hawkesbury River as far as Hunter River, Singleton. Councils or LGAs (Local Government Areas) also contain many parishes.

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36 minutes ago, colleda said:

My bold. Not strictly correct. I live in Northumberland county which is made up from many councils from Hawkesbury River as far as Hunter River, Singleton. Councils or LGAs (Local Government Areas) also contain many parishes.

The map for the challenges doesn't have parishes; only Council areas although here they call them counties. (I have heard some council areas called shires.)

https://project-gc.com/Tools/MapCounties?profile_name=Goldenwattle&country=Australia&region=New+South+Wales&submit=Filter

 

image.thumb.png.4cd3f91e243d4389630c45687eecc22f.png

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