Scuba Diving in Remote Kosrae

Text by Yvette Cardozo with photos by Yvette Cardozo, Kosrae Village Resort, Kosrae Nautilus Resort, and Tim Rock

December, 2013 Vol. 18, No. 3

KOSRAE_NAUTILUS_RESORT_anemone fish in an anemoneIf you’ve never heard of Kosrae, it’s not surprising.

It’s the easternmost of the 607 islands dotted across a million square miles of ocean that make up the Federated States of Micronesia (called simply, FSM). It truly is in the middle of nowhere …. 2,800 miles southwest of Hawaii, 1,500 miles east of Guam and a scant five degrees north of the Equator.  Though many islands in this part of the world are flat atolls, Kosrae (pronounced ko-shrye) has tall serrated mountains and looks like a mini Hawaii or Tahiti. It’s tiny, shaped like a triangle and barely 15 miles across at its widest. But it also has to compete with its better known island cousins, Palau, Yap and Chuuk (formerly known as Truk). Continue reading »

Bethlehem– Away from the Manger

Text and photos by Yvette Cardozo

November, 2012, Vol. 17. No 2

 ISRAEL Cardozo - Outdoor nativity scene

ISRAEL Cardozo – Outdoor nativity scene

The rental car is safely back without a scratch and filled with gas. So the story can be told. We were SUPPOSED to drive to the main checkpoint leading into Bethlehem on the West Bank, the Arab section of Israel.

Before 2000 … before the second intifada and its terrorist bombings, you could drive unhindered between the Jewish and Arab districts of Israel along the edge of Jerusalem. But now there is this wall. And security gates. And you are not supposed to take an Israeli rental car across.

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Greenland’s Iceberg Central, Ilulissat

Text and photos by Yvette Cardozo, with pictures by De Leeuw

October, 2012, Vol. 17. No 1

House with fish drying on rack at the shore of Disko Bay in Ilulissat. Yvette Cardozo

House with fish drying on rack at the shore of Disko Bay in Ilulissat. Yvette Cardozo

Ilulissat means “iceberg” in Greenlandic. And indeed, there are icebergs here. On a cruise that covered a good chunk of the high arctic from Canada to Greenland, this place was the standout — but not just for the ice.

 

First, however, a comment about that “high arctic” term. We’re talking here waaaay north in a context where Churchill (the polar bear place) and Yellowknife (Iceroad Truckers) is considered the tropical south. Our cruise aboard Adventure Canada’s Clipper Adventurer took us to tiny, remote Inuit villages along with all the infamously disastrous sites of failed 19th century polar explorations where one wonders how nations could make heroes out of so many stubborn jerks.

 

Snorkeling with Beluga Whales in Churchill, Manitoba

Text and Photos by Yvette Cardozo, Mitchel Osborne and courtesy of Travel Manitoba

March, 2012   Vol. 16, No. 4

Churchill_Cardozo - Beluga Whale In Hudson Bay

Churchill_Cardozo – Beluga Whale In Hudson Bay

Face down in the 42 degree water of Churchill River off Hudson Bay in Arctic Canada, I’ve got company — a 16 foot, stark white beluga whale is staring at me, sly little grin on his face. I stare back and squeak into my snorkel. He disappears, offended perhaps at whatever I said. But maybe not … because then he’s back, now with a friend. And there are more, like ghosts, in the distance.
This is the OTHER Churchill: summer (sort of), whales, hardly any tourists. And an occasional bear.

Traveling halfway to the North Pole to escape the city heat does seem a tad extreme. but this quirky little town of 850 on the western shore of Manitoba’s Hudson Bay, where local guys wait for the fly-in barber to get their hair cut, is the crossroads for one of the most amazing animal shows on earth.In fall, thousands of polar bears pad through, looking improbably cute as they play-fight and impatiently wait for ice to form so they can go hunt seals. In summer, it’s beluga whales by the thousand, chowing down on capelin, giving birth, scratching itchy backs on rocks in the shallow rivers that empty into the bay.

And my friends and I have come to join them in the water.

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