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News July 2008   (Noumea/New Caledonia, July 31, 2008)

Website statistics: In June we were able to welcome on our website 39'072 visitors who did 1'194'644 hits.
                                           (May = 52'947 visitors 1'445'085 hits)
                                The visitors are coming from about 100 to 118 different countries!
                                Record day since 12/17/1998 - the birthday of our website: 11/5/2007 = 13'407 visitors and 787'456 hits
Today, on July 31st, 2008, we were able to enter our 160th country: New Caledonia – a French overseas territory.
12 days before, our LandCruiser left New Zealand at Tauranga with Tasman Orient Line in its 13th container, while we
flew two days later with Air Vanuatu from Auckland to Port Vila in Vanuatu. During four days, we visited there the
capital Port Vila and inquired about a possible later car entry. The Ministry of Tourism was very helpful in supporting
us with a letter of recommendation for a temporary importation of our Toyota.
On July 27th, we continued with a propeller aircraft to Noumea in New Caledonia. It's interesting that Vanuatu, the former
Anglo-French Condominium of the New Hebrides, shows more "African" spirit, whereas New Caledonia – at least its
capital Noumea – leaves a rather modern "European" impression. This picture doesn't at all mean that there are no dark-
skinned Kanaks to see, which count for approximately 43% of the population. It's still pretty well visible that we are in
Melanesia – the group of islands that stretches across Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu to Fiji.
New Caledonia itself is made up of the main island Grand Terre (6'467 sq.mi., which equals about ¼ of the size of
Switzerland or about half of Taiwan), the Loyalty Islands (Lifou 444 sq.mi., Mare 251 sq.mi., Ouvea 50 sq.mi. =
745 sq.mi.) and some smaller islets (e.g. Isle of Pines, Belep Islands, etc.). It has only a population density of about 34
people per square mile. The group of islands lies about 750 miles East of Australia and is classified as a French overseas
territory with some internal autonomy. But it doesn't belong to the European Union, like the already visited Caribbean
islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe (incl. Saint Martin), the South American French Guiana or the still to us unknown
African island of Reunion. New Caledonia has its own money, the Pacific Franc CFP, respectively XPF, together
with French Polynesia (Tahiti etc.) and the likewise Polynesian group of Wallis and Futuna.
Unfortunately New Caledonia belongs to the most expensive countries on earth – even more expensive than New Zealand.
The port of Noumea is said to be the most expensive at all. Said that, we had to pay US$ 1'030 to get our car released.

Our 160th country leads now together with New Zealand and Australia the "hitparade" of port fees.


                                                         New Caledonia: Unstuffing of the container in the port of Noumea


We are looking now forward to discover this subtropical island, which has been sighted already 1774 by Captain Cook

and which was annexed 1853 by France. We guess that we shall explore until mid-September the 350 road miles long
island with its many beaches, and try to get a picture about the arising expenses, should we go with our LandCruiser for the
adventure "Vanuatu", using the monthly operating ferry "MV Havannah".

New Reports/Pictures

SOUTHEAST ASIA:                                      mouse over picture shows comments
               click a picture to see details


(July 2008)

Vanuatu: Boeing 737-800 of Air Vanuatu at the airport of Port Vila

Sumatra-Java, part 1
(Dec. 2006)
Indonesia: Temple of Borobudur near Yogyakarta/Java
(Febr. 2008)

Philippines: Ricefields near Sagada/Mountain Province/Northern Luzon

Timor-Leste (Mainland)
(May 2007)
Com/Timor-Leste: Traditional Fataluku house
(May 2007)

Oecussi/Timor-Leste: Landscape East of Oecussi-'Town'

(Island of Borneo), Part 2
(Nov. 2006)
Kuching/Sarawak/East-Malaysia (Borneo): Proboscis monkey in Bako National Park
(Island of Borneo)
(Oct. 2006)

Mount Kinabalu/Sabah/East-Malaysia (Borneo): Early Morning View

(Sept. 2006)
Brunei (Borneo): ’The 'Ali Saifuddien'-Mosque at sunset in Bandar Seri Begawan
(Island of Borneo), Part 1
(June - Aug. 2006)

Miri/Sarawak/East-Malaysia (Borneo): Traditional stilt houses reflecting in the water of the Miri River

(May 2006)
Myanmar: Waiting for customers in Kawthoung
Temples, Pagodas, Shrines 

People, Beaches, Nature

(Nov. 1993 - Jan. 1994)
(Nov. - Dec. 2005)
(Febr. - April 2006)
Thailand: Ho Phra I-Suan Temple in Nakhon Si Thammarat


(February 2006)

Laos: The ’Patuxai’, the Laotian replica of the French ’Arc de Triomphe’ in Paris


(January 2006)
Vietnam: Two women cultivating a rice field


(December 2005)

Cambodia: The main temple of Angkor Wat with its five towers viewed from the hill of the ’Phnom Bakheng’ - Temple


(Oct. - Nov. 2005)
Malaysia: The four minarets of the ’Sultan Salahuddin’ State Mosque in Shah Alam are visible already from far


(September 2005)

Singapore: High-rise buildings pop up everywhere - here behind the Parliament House


(September 2005)

Macao: The ’St. Paul’ ruin is an inspiring sight also at night

Hong Kong

(September 2005)


Hong Kong:From ’Hong Kong Peak’ we get an excellent view of the ’skyscraper jungle’
+ our New Caledonia Trip

Grand Terre (Noumea + South) – August- 2008

+ our New Zealand Trip, 6th part

North Island – June+July 2008

+ our New Zealand Trip, 5th part

North Island – May+June 2008

+ our New Zealand Trip, 4th part

South to North Island – May 2008

+ our New Zealand Trip, 3rd part

South Island – April 2008

+ our New Zealand Trip, 2nd part

South Island – March 2008

+ our New Zealand Trip, 1st part

South Island – Febr.+March 2008

+ our Hong Kong Trip

Hong Kong – Dec. 2007+Jan. 2008

+ our Taiwan Trip, 3rd part

Taipei-Taitung-Kaohsiung – Nov. 2007

+ our Taiwan Trip, 2nd part
Taitung-Southern Cross-Island Highway-
Siraya National Scenic Area (Zengwun Reservoir)-
Alishan NSA-Sun Moon Lake NSA-Taroko National Park-
Suao-Hualien Highway-Taipei – Oct.+Nov. 2007
+ our Taiwan Trip, 1st part

Kaohsiung-Kenting-Taitung – Oct. 2007

+ our Indonesia Trip, 6th part

Kalimantan – July 2007

+ our Indonesia Trip, within the 5th part

Tana Toraja (Toraja-Land) – June+July 2007

+ our Indonesia Trip, 5th part

Sulawesi – June+July 2007

+ our Indonesia Trip, 4th part

Sumba, West Timor – May+June 2007

+ our Indonesia Trip, 3rd part

Lombok, Sumabawa, Flores – April 2007

+ our Indonesia Trip, 2nd part

Bali – Jan.-March 2007

+ our Borneo Trip

Sarawak, Brunei, Sabah, Kalimantan – Sept.-Nov. 2006

+ our LandCruiser on a "Rejuvenation Cure"

in Miri/Sarawak - the East Malaysian province on Borneo Engine/Body: June-Aug. 2006/Transmission: Sept. 2007

+ added from a earlier visit to the USA:

Las Vegas    (Millennium change)

+ added from our Arabian Peninsula round trip:

Pictures from Yemen (May-June 1996)

+ Flashbacks of our Worldrecordtour:

Pictures from "all the continents" (Oct. 1984 - April 1997)

+ Follow-ups about Toyota-Experiences:
Encounters resp. "Ups + Downs" with
Toyota Companies since 1982
On July 7th, 2005, we were able to celebrate after a journey through 150 countries the car's
600'000th Kilometer - very prosaic in front of the post office in Cayenne/French Guiana.
Are you interested into the LandCruiser History, prepared by Toyota Motor Sales USA and taken over by
Toyota Motor United Kingdom? (after some loading-time please klick "IN LEGEND" and afterwards "HAIR TO MAGELLAN
- and you will see that we already belong to it too!)


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