CraSh Williams' Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Grande Francia’

As our journey comes to an end…

Posted by Cool Your Jets IV on September 21, 2011

Andrea, whom we met whilst aboard the Grande Francia continues his journey around the World (do look for two intrepid travellers in the video…)

It seems like a long time since we were aboard the ship, though we’re still talking about it – people we meet are always amazed when they hear about our leaving London aboard a cargo ship and our voyage to South America, following the coasts of France, Spain, Africa and Brazil – an awesome experience that still lives long in our memories. But alas, all good things come to an end and we’ve had a truly awesome time, met some wonderful people and experienced many highs and great times.

The whole adventure had been really special and we both feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to see the World – pretty much on our own terms, having no plan whatsoever, only to arrive in Buenos Aires and go with the flow. Argentina was superb, we wish we’d met our tango instructor sooner though know we’ll take it up when we eventually settle back in the UK. The friends we met whilst learning Spanish will remain good friends – some of whom are already planning to visit London later this year.

Machu Picchu was everything and more than we expected – at one stage we had no plans to see it, so very glad we decided to get to Lima and onto Cuzco – it was mind-blowing. Having no plan saw us leave South America to meet up with friends in SE Asia, Jamie and Lisa in Vietnam, our little holiday within our trip – Vietnam was such a beautiful country and travelling by train, north to south we pretty much saw all of it and so want to go back.

Whilst Phnom Phen wasn’t for us, the rest of Cambodia was – seeing the small river town of Kampot was a highlight with many drunken nights spent in the Rusty Keyhole, drinking cold beers and enjoying great food to meeting up with our friends Dave and Katie, en route to London having been to a wedding in Australia. Seeing Angkor Wat with them both – we couldn’t have hoped for two better intrepid explorers!

Thailand was everything we though it wasn’t – we were both expecting Bangkok to be a little bit like Old Delhi, ramshackle and broken, dirty and not really for us so imagine our surprise to see multiple high-rise office blocks on a par with New York – an incredible metropolis though it the places outside of Bangkok we truly enjoyed – visiting the Islands and being able to climb in Krabi, a longish term ambition of mine. To visiting the north, making friends in Chiang Mai and our nights inside Pinkys – a fine watering hole with some great characters though none more than Fon and Graeme – unfortunately the photo I have of Graeme is long deleted though the image has been burned into my memory!

Then there was India and our being spoilt rotten by Ram Mama and Madhu Mami, both of whom gave up their bed and fed us plenty of home cooked food, which after being on the road for so long was very welcome. Rather than visit the same places we opted to see more of the north and the foothills of the Himalayas. Having now been to Leh I can categorically say that this is my favourite place in India – riding our Enfield in the mountains, riding over the first and third highest motorable passes was a real highlight. Seeing Goa in a monsoon (and meeting our friend Tony from Chiang Mai, randomly paying for something in a supermarket) and for me bathing in Ganga Mata in Varanasi, for no other reason than, why not!

We’re now in Greece, have been for about two or so weeks – relaxing before we head back to London and finding somewhere to live, rebuilding our careers and planning the next stage of our lives with memories of this year shaping our future. It’s been a wonderful adventure and I couldn’t have had a better person to travel with, be with and to share all these wonderful times with than my wife and co-pilot Shelley, none of this would have been possible nor as much fun with out her – it’s been a blast babes x

The End!


Posted in Brazil, Buenos Aires, Cambodia, Delhi, Greece, India, London, Peru, South East Asia, Tango, Thailand, Vietnam | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments »

Favourite Restaurant in Buenos Aires, the winner is…

Posted by Cool Your Jets IV on March 10, 2011

I was really looking forward to the food whilst in Buenos Aires though having been here for near on three months (and having almost consumed at least four cows) I must admit to being a little disappointed. True, the beef in Buenos Aires is excellent, certainly better than anything I’ve had before and its also very cheap. However, that’s pretty much all the food we’ve seen; beef, beef and more beef – Portenos eat little else!

The portions served are huge, I’m not joking when I say that one portion can easily be shared by two people, or five midgets – it’s really too much. Las Cabrera sticks in the mind as when our food arrived, we also received several tapa type dishes along with our main course – we didn’t even touch them so no doubt these were tipped in the bin, or possibly reheated and re-served (though I do doubt this!) For me it really is a shame to see so much food go to waste.

Out of all the Parrillas we ate at, by far my favourite is the Secret Parrilla – a really wonderful find and we’ve been back several times and the main waiter there is definitely a fan of Shelley. They do the best steaks, they also have several fish dishes on their menu and a very good paella. I’m going to let the cat out of the bag re the name of this restaurant, its called Parrillita Tito though it’s difficult to find as it has no sign and mirrored windows. It’s also half way between Mtr. Caranza and Las Canitas, on Dorrego. There’s also a Pizzeria a couple of doors before.

Good luck looking for Parrilla Tito, it’s worth the search…

It was a close call though as my other favourite is el Primo in Las Canitas. We stumbled upon this place on Boxing Day, packed with locals which is always a good sign. The food here really is very good though its standard Parrilla fare – it also has outside seating and its a great spot to people watch. Theres also several great bars nearby so you can head there for a really great night out.

Outside A Nos Amours, with Constan

Craig y Constant

However, my most favourite restaurant in Buenos Aires is…..A Nos Amours!

We were introduced to A Nos Amours by Alexis – we’d travelled with his parents aboard Grande Francia and looked him up when we arrived. Alexis has known Constant, the owner for a good couple of years and they’re good friends. The food at A Nos Amours is always exceptional and in the main, is bought fresh from market each day – it’s also pretty much all organic. What I really love about A Nos Amours is that the food portions are a decent size, not too much nor too little, they’re just right. Constant (who is also French) hand picks his wine and they have an excellent selection though they’re not holding any white wine currently as it’s in the process of being bottled!

We’ve had some really wonderful evenings in A Nos Amours, we wish Constant and his team all the very best for the future.

Posted in Buenos Aires, Food, Leaving Buenos Aires | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Guest Article at, A View to a Thrill…

Posted by Cool Your Jets IV on March 1, 2011

Renee King is a Travel Writer and authors the very good Travel Website/Blog,  A View to a Thrill.

I’ve been following her blog for a while and prior to leaving the UK I read a very good article about travelling via a Cargo Ship and how it’s becoming more and more popular. I’d commented that we were going to be doing this, from London to Buenos Aires, via Africa, Brazil and Uruguay. Having kept in contact since arriving I’ve been asked to write an article for her site – you can read said article by clicking the link below:

The  most conspicuous escape from the UK……ever

Posted in Buenos Aires, Sailing to Buenos Aires | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »