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Tim Richards
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Britain & Ireland (Jump to Poland or More Europe instead)



Top 10: Comedy Clubs Around the World
Traveller
, 7 October 2016

"As is true of all the best Dublin pubs, the International Bar is referred to in James Joyce's Ulysses. Since 1988 the classic 19th-century pub has also been home to this regular comedy night, the launch pad for many successful Irish comedians. If you want to discover what the gift of the gab is about, start here..."

Listing great comedy venues in the USA
, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Singapore.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

East End Eating
The Sunday Age
, 24 May 2015

"Can Eating London's new East End Food Tour deliver on its promise of 'London's best bacon sandwich'? My editor has charged me with finding out if this is so, and, dear reader, I am equal to the challenge. I feel, in fact, that all my previous visits to Britain have been mere training for the bacon sandwich that lies ahead. And it's a corker of a sandwich. As our small group takes its seats around a long table within the ex-bank interior of St John Bread & Wine, our young guide Ollie lovingly describes the bacon..."

Taking part in a new
East End food tour in London, UK.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

Making Right Royal Chocolate
The Sun-Herald
, 22 February 2015

"'A chocolate house is like a nightclub. You've got to be on the list. You want to meet the people at it because they're society's high fliers. It's music, dancing girls, and chocolate.' Food historian Marc Meltonville is giving me a whole new perspective on the humble cup of hot chocolate, as we stand chatting in a corridor at Hampton Court Palace. In the 17th century, he says, it was one of the 'big three' hot beverages introduced to Britain, and each had a distinctive place in society..."

Visiting the rediscovered royal chocolate kitchens at Hampton Court in London, UK.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

Flight Test: British Airways
Traveller (The Age & Sydney Morning Herald),
24 January
2015

"My wife Narrelle opts for the most tongue-twisting dish I've ever seen on an airline menu: chicken malagueta with biro biro rice, roast peppers, okra caruru and chimichurri sauce. We joke about the airline making up some of the words, but Narrelle reports that it's a tasty dish, moist and tender. She still doesn't like okra (to which I reply 'Don't watch her show then'), but is positive about the orange chocolate mousse for dessert..."

Reviewing the premium economy experience on a flight from London to New York
.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

To Berlin by Rail
Get Up & Go, Summer 2015

"Most travellers arrive in London looking for history, but itís also there on your way out. Iím sipping great coffee within the cavernous interior of Caravan, a sleek modern cafe on Granary Square at Kings Cross. The huge brick building itís located in was once a storehouse for grain brought in by rail and barge. With that transport history, it seems the right place from which to set off on a grand rail journey to the Continent..."

Detailing a rail journey from London to Berlin, with stops at Brussels and Cologne.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

The Wrong Abbey Road
The Sun-Herald
, 18 January 2015

"'There were two girls wandering around, looking at maps, and one of them asked me 'Where's Abbey Road?'' says Michael Grant. 'I smiled and pointed her to the sign, and she realised: 'This is the wrong station, isn't it?'" Although it's a considerable distance from the St John's Wood street made famous by the Beatles album, Grant and his neighbours often bump into bewildered music fans looking for the pedestrian crossing on the Abbey Road album cover..."

Investigating the attractions of the "wrong" Abbey Road, in West Ham, London.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

Secrets of the London Underground
Traveller
, 30 December 2014

"Inevitably, every visitor to London forms a relationship with the Tube. In other cities, underground railways are practical, no-nonsense ways to get around town quickly. But the London Underground has always seemed more than that. Its distinctive logo, its iconic route map, its many stations with curious names, and the strange unearthliness of its deep-level platforms, give it a personality all its own..."

Uncovering five Tube secrets, including fake facades, a missing crypt and a heart-wrenching memorial.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

The Origins of Halloween and the Best Places to Celebrate
Fairfax Traveller
, 31 October 2014

"When I was growing up in country Western Australia, we hardly gave a thought to Halloween. The closest we came to its pumpkins and pageantry was via American television series. As Halloween has become more popular here over the years, Australians have drawn heavily on those American traditions. So it can come as a surprise to discover that Halloween's roots stretch across the Atlantic to Ireland..."

Examining the origins of Halloween, and its celebration in the USA and Ireland.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

Dockside Dining
The Age & Sydney Morning Herald
,
25 October
2014

"If you think Welsh food doesn't extend much beyond Welsh rarebit and leeks, you're not alone. That's all I could envision before arriving in Cardiff, perhaps with a slice of Caerphilly cheese on the side. There will be Welsh rarebit in the near future, as it turns out. But for the moment my wife and I are sitting in Ffresh, a beautiful contemporary restaurant in Cardiff Bay. And the bay area seems just the right place in which to consider Wales' 21st century cuisine..."

Experiencing excellent local cuisine in the restaurants of Cardiff, Wales
.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

Best Literary Walking Tours
Lonely Planet's Best in Travel 2015
,
October
2014

"Thereís no better way to pay tribute to your favourite author or characters than to follow in their footsteps via these entertaining tours..."

Listing ten distinctive literary walking tours in locales across the world, including the UK, USA, Sweden, Ireland, France, Romania, China and Australia.

This book can be purchased online from Amazon.com.

Not available for republication.

[Read the full article here]


Venerable and Hip Vie in a Fascinating Mix
The Sunday Age
, 5 October 2014

"Despite its age, Spillers Records doesn't look like the oldest record shop in the world. When it opened in 1894, Spillers met the needs of Cardiff's music fans by selling recordings on wax cylinders and shellac discs. A sign on the wall says the shop has been an influential meeting place for Welsh musicians over the decades, and the steady flow of customers flicking through CDs and records suggests there may be life in the old dog yet. Much the same can be said for Cardiff's shopping arcades..."

Exploring the Victorian-era shopping arcades in Cardiff, UK
.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

As Hell Broke Loose, the Art of Survival Set the Scene
The Age, 20 September 2014

"Cry 'Havoc!', and let slip the dogs of war. When Shakespeare wrote that line, he was probably imagining creatures of a fierce, huge, wolf-like aspect. Not so the unknown British cartoonist who created the satirical illustration titled Hark! Hark! The Dogs Do Bark! As the Great War broke out in August 1914, he depicted the nations of Europe as small scrappy dogs, superimposed on a map of the Continent..."

Visiting an exhibition of World War I cartoons at a London museum
.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

It's Rooted: Aussie Terms that Foreigners Just Won't Get
Fairfax Traveller
, 21 May 2014

"Australian travellers love heading offshore; and with our dollar still defying gravity, we're not about to stop. The only problem? Sometimes the locals, and other travellers from beyond this wide brown land, have trouble following what we're saying. So here's a guide to problematic Aussie-isms when you're going OS. In fact, let's start with 'OS'..."

Identifying ten Aussie slang words and terms which don't travel well overseas (with particular reference to the USA, Canada and the UK).
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

Taking Pics With a Phone
The Sunday Times Travel Magazine (UK)
, March 2014

In this how-to guide for the British travel magazine, I give six tips on how to take the best travel photos using a smartphone.

Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

Dive into Literary Dublin
Lonely Planet: Great Escapes
October 2013

A guide to the literary highlights of the Irish capital, within this book profiling a variety of travel escapes around the world.

This book can be purchased online from Amazon.com.

Not available for republication.


Pack It In: How to Travel With Only Carry-on Luggage
Fairfax Traveller
, 7 August 2013

"My name's Tim, and I'm an obsessive light packer. I only ever travel with a cabin luggage-sized backpack, no matter where I go or how long I stay. In 2011, for example, I spent eight weeks in Europe. My only luggage? That trusty, unassuming High Sierra backpack I bought in 2005. Travelling like this isn't easy. Being self-limited to hand luggage involves a high level of obsession and a cultish devotion to the virtues of travelling light..."

Explaining my light packing "Rule of Three", with specific reference to travel in Poland, the UK and Italy [Includes video clip].
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

Painting a Future
The Sunday Age
, 21 April 2013

"On the side of a Belfast housing block is a vast painting of sailing ships with decorative prows, approaching a shore. On a rock above the beach is a severed, bleeding hand. As the story goes, this mythical red hand was cut off and thrown to the shore by the mythical Labraid to win a boat race and become monarch of the ancient Irish kingdom of Ulster. Ever since then the Red Hand has been an emblem of the north. There are many such murals across the small city..."

Taking a black cab tour through the sectarian past of Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

A World Full of Cheap Thrills
The Age & Sydney Morning Herald
,
16 March
2013

"To be an Australian traveller is to be obsessed by currency exchange rates, and certain cities have a reputation among Aussies for their crippling expense. But with the Aussie dollar's dramatic rise, things must have changed. To test this theory, I visited Lonely Planet's Melbourne HQ to thumb through guidebooks used by travellers ten years ago, comparing prices while factoring in inflation. What I found should put a smile on every Australian traveller's face..."

Exploring the effect of the Australian dollar's rise on attractions in London, New York, Tokyo and Reykjavik.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

World's Most Expensive Cities Not So Bad
Fairfax Traveller
, 7 February 2013

"They were bitter, strong, smoothÖ and extremely expensive at £18.50 each. In 2008, with the Australian dollar buying 48 pence, that worked out to $38.50 per cocktail. Ouch. I consoled myself that I was doing much better than I would have five years earlier when the dollar had been buying only 35p; at that rate, each Vesper would have cost $52.85. At the other extreme is the exchange rate of today, currently hovering around 66p. Assuming the cocktail cost the same in pounds, that Vesper would now go for $28..."

Examining how the Australian dollar's rise has made travel cheaper than ten years ago in London, New York, Tokyo and Reykjavik.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

The Royal Fleet
The Sunday Age
, 13 January 2013

"It's hard to imagine James Bond making one of his daring high-speed getaways in the vehicle in front of me. It's a perfect replica of the Aston Martin used in the movies Goldfinger and Thunderball, except for one key detail: it's less than two metres long. Still, Sean Connery's Bond could handle any crisis in style; he would have just cast a lazy eye over its miniature chassis, drawled 'Must've shrunk in the wash', leapt in and raced off..."

Inspecting royal vehicles and other assorted curios in the Sandringham Museum, Norfolk, UK.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

The Eel Deal
The Sunday Age
, 11 November 2012

"If it's true that you eat first with your eyes, I could be in trouble. I'm standing at a street stall in London's East End and on the metal counter in front of me is a bowl of jellied eels. It's brimming with a chunky clear jelly, within which sit tubular pieces of grey-and-white eel. It's not, at first glance, appetising. However, this simple foodstuff has been an East End staple for centuries. The stall I'm visiting, Tubby Isaacs, has stood on this street corner near Petticoat Lane Market since 1919..."

Eating at a jellied eel stall and a pie & mash shop in the East End of London, UK.
Available for republication (print only).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]

On the Trail of a Legend
Escape, 21 October 2012
(News Ltd's Sunday travel section)

"It takes a bit of deductive brainpower to find Speedy's Cafe. As it's north of busy Euston Road, with its drab modern office buildings and heavy traffic, I have to put in some fancy footwork to avoid getting run down by a red bus. Safely on the other side, I tap The Game is On on my phone and pick up my walking pace as the music plays. The signature tune from the recent hit BBC TV series Sherlock is a lively, action-packed number, and I'm getting into the mood for investigation..."

Deducing the London of Sherlock Holmes, both classic and contemporary incarnations.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]


City of Literature
Medical Observer, 24 August 2012

"'We call him "the prick with the stick",' says tour guide Pat Liddy, cheekily referring to a statue of the writer James Joyce which stands proudly in OíConnell Street. It's all in good fun though, he adds, smiling as he returns to his pint of Guinness in an atmospheric old pub which is a former haunt of Joyceís. It seems somehow fitting that we should be on a literary walk thatís immediately ended up at the pub, given the central role of such establishments in Irelandís social and cultural life..."

Walking in the footsteps of the great writers of Dublin, Ireland.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]


London 2012
Medical Observer, 13 July 2012

"On one side of a busy flyover are the huge tower blocks of the kind of housing estate Iíve glimpsed on The Bill. On the other side is a wasteland of disused industrial buildings. It may only be 25 minutes from the West End by Tube, but East London feels like an entirely different and bleaker world. But there are rays of sunshine on the horizon, courtesy of the 2012 Olympic Games..."

Discovering the industrial history of East London via an Olympics walking tour.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]


Little League
The Sunday Age, 23 October 2011

"Thanks to animators over the years, the leprechaun has become a well-known figure; we can all recall his buckled hat, beard, pipe, beguiling accent and pot of gold. 'Everyone who comes in here gives the same description,' says Mark. But heís here to put me straight on the little people and their many other mythical colleagues. Despite the name, itís actually a museum devoted to all of the island nationís rich folklore..."

Taking a trip through the National Leprechaun Museum in Dublin, Ireland.
Available for republication (print only).

Images available.

Kicking Over the Traces
The Age & Sydney Morning Herald,
15 October 2011

"'He was like all troublemakers - they were disenfranchised, angry young men with no jobs, no future at all, they were the bottom of the pile," says Terry Cunningham, as we chat in McCarthy's Hotel, an atmospheric old pub in Fethard, deep in Ireland's County Tipperary. The particular angry young man we have in mind is John 'Red' Kelly, a poor local tenant who stole two pigs in 1840 and was sentenced to transportation to Australia..."

Following the trail of the father of Ned Kelly in Tipperary, Ireland.
Available for republication (print only).

Images available.

[Read the full article here]

When London Comes Calling
The Age & Sydney Morning Herald,
13 September 2011

"Things are gradually improving, thanks to a disparate band of cafe owners and baristas from Australia and New Zealand. Little by little, antipodean-style cafes have been popping up across inner London, including April's opening of a branch of Melbourne's St Ali. The British media have noticed the trend - the afternoon I flew into London on my latest visit, The Evening Standard ran a story with the headline 'Aussie rules coffee in London'..."

Detailing a selection of Aussie and NZ-owned cafes in the British capital.
Available for republication (print only).


[Read the full article here]
Belfast's Titanic Monument
Escape, 11 September 2011
(News Ltd's Sunday travel section)

"A hundred years ago this building was the centre of activity, as thousands of workers swarmed over the nearby slipway where the Titanic and its sister ship Olympic were built. Now Harland and Wolff has moved its operations away, and the quiet dockside area stands as a monument to past glories. However, with the centenary of Titanic's maiden voyage next year, there's new life bobbing up in the doomed ship's wake..."

Exploring the birthplace of the SS Titanic in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Available for republication (print and Web).

Images available.

[Read the full article here]

A Trip to Gallifrey, Calling in the UK
Escape, 21 August 2011
(News Ltd's Sunday travel section)

"It looks like the end. Iím trapped in a small room with a bunch of other people off the street, feeling a jolt of fear as three Daleks close in around us. The metal villains from the popular BBC science fiction series Doctor Who are convinced weíre in league with their enemy the Doctor, and before we can react, their trademark cry of ďEXTERMINATE!Ē rings out..."

Battling Daleks and other aliens at the Doctor Who Experience in London.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

Fangtastic! The Worldís Best Vampire-spotting Locations
www.lonelyplanet.com, 9 August 2011

Revealing several ways of encountering vampires in places around the globe (including locations in Romania, the UK, France, the USA, Costa Rica and Indonesia).


Not available for republication.

[Read the full article here]

Licence to Stroll
The Sunday Age, 16 January 2011

"'St James for the gentlemen, Mayfair for the ladies,' says tour guide Simon Rodway. The dapper tour guide brandishing a silver-topped cane is leading us on his London of James Bond walking tour, the first of three tours Iím taking in connection with 20th century British fictional characters. Heís right on the money as he recites the old expression about these neighbouring London locales..."

Joining three walking tours about fictional characters in London, UK.
Available for republication (print only).

Images available.

Best Vampire Spotting Locales &
Top Ten Historical Re-enactments
Lonely Planet's Best in Travel 2011
, November 2010

"No amount of historic circumstance can top Stokerís evocative description of the Russian schooner Demeter blown across Whitbyís harbour with its dead captain lashed to the helm, crashing beneath the East Cliff before disgorging the vampire in the guise of a huge dog. As a result, Whitby has become a popular destination for vampire-fanciers."

Two lists of distinctive travel experiences in locales across the world (including four in Britain).

This book can be purchased online from Amazon.com.

Not available for republication.


Life off the West End
The West Australian, 6 February 2010

"Even though itís very Off West End, I still have the common London experience of going to the theatre and realising Iíve seen some of the actors on the telly or at the cinema. Outside on the wet streets, people are bustling through the rain toward Kilburn Tube station, or stepping into the welcoming pub opposite. Thereís something both very British but very international about the scene."

Stepping outside London's theatrical mainstream to go 'Off West End'.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

[Read the full article here]


London Inspiration
Medical Observer, 26 August 2009

"Shad Thames is a curious laneway running parallel with the Thames, between a set of large brick warehouses. Above the street a series of walkways runs back and forth between the buildings. Itís an atmospheric sight; and itís also, I remember, where Daleks were seen to roam when it was a dilapidated, rain-drenched strip in the 1980s. Which just goes to show - even metallic alien invaders canít stop gentrification."

Taking three walking tours based on fictional characters in London.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

Slumming It With Class
Medical Observer, 30 January 2009

"A stay at one of Londonís great hotels, such as the Savoy, will set you back a mere $1000 a night. But cheaper lodgings are available..."

I investigate relatively inexpensive accommodation in London, as part of a survey of budget options around the world.
Available for republication (print and Web).

For Your Spies Only
Herald Sun, 5 December 2008

"The power, the power! Iím standing at a computer console in London, selecting missions undertaken by a well-known secret agent. As I touch each icon, an impressive digital globe rotates on the giant screen above me, indicating the locations in James Bondís adventures. Yes, I am a Bond villain and I hold the fate of Agent 007 in my very hands. Nyah-ha-ha!"

On the London trail of James Bond 007, and his creator Ian Fleming.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

London Off West End
Medical Observer, 17 October 2008

"Dodging part of a fast-moving actorís costume is not one of the usual rituals of going to the theatre. But Iím at the Globe Theatre, and here the rules are quite different. Thereís no real danger of losing an eye, of course - the actors know exactly where theyíre treading - but thereís a great sense of energy and excitement when they wheel in your direction to spout Shakespeareís famous lines."

Taking in the entertainment at London's more stimulating theatrical venues.
Available for republication (print and Web).
Images available.

From Tattoos to Tanks
Sydney Morning Herald, 1 October 2005

"For a truly English experience, you canít go past the British Lawnmower Museum in Southport, which invites the visitor to sample the 'extraordinary history of garden machinery'. The exhibits include fast mowers, solar mowers, robot mowers and tiny mowers. There are even 'Mowers of the Rich and Famous', allowing you to discover what Princess Diana used on the lawns of Kensington Palace."

Ranges through the world's oddest museums, exhibiting everything from sulphur to Spam.
Available for republication (print only).

[Read the full article here]

A Flick Through Britain
The West Australian, 12 August 2004

"Thereís more than one way to skin a cat. Or indeed, to visit Britain. The Romans came to conquer the place, the Vikings to plunder, and most modern visitors have images of castles, pomp and pageantry whirling in their heads. But some of the best English language TV and film has come out of the UK, and an increasing number of tourists make a different kind of pilgrimage Ė to the location of their favourite Brit flick."

Guide to travelling through the UK in search of TV and film locations.
Available for republication (print and Web).

More travel writing: 
Australia | Europe | Pacific | Asia | Americas
Travel: Britain & Ireland

I'm a member of the Australian Society of Travel Writers. This page contains examples of my travel writing, organised by location. Each entry includes a sample paragraph, and indications of available rights.

I also have a selection of high-quality digital images available, depicting a variety of international locations. 
See examples of my travel photography.

If you'd like to republish one of these pieces, or would like a new piece written about the same location, please get in touch via the contacts below:

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Archive
All articles in this archive are available for republication (fee to be negotiated). Articles can be rewritten to meet your style or length requirements. Please contact me by email with your query.

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Melbourne VIC 3000
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email:
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phone:
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(international +61-411-242327)

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