Feet First

While sitting on Brighton beach (UK) back in 2005 with my new girlfriend Verity I thought the view of our feet pointing out to sea would make a nice photo. Ever since then we’ve continued to document our travels in this way, resulting in a collection of over 100 photos. In 2011 the series took a new twist with the arrival of a third set of feet – our daughter Matilda. You can already see her little feet getting bigger and bigger.

It's Bluebell season here in the UK, so we drove down to Little Wix Wood in Hatchlands Park. Such a beautiful walk. Matilda loved pointing out all the flowers.

A windy walk on Camber Sands (UK). Matilda got sand in her eyes and wouldn't stop crying. I had a good time flying the kite though.

Decorating begins in our new house. We're finally on the property ladder.

Yellow leaves. Battersea Park, London.

Camel ride with our guide Mr Pathak. Dhordo, Gujarat, India.

Sunrise at the white salt desert of Dhordo. Gujarat, India.

Gujarat, India.

Gujarat, India.

The harbor front in Zakinthos, Greece. There were a number of old fishing boats moored up along the front. Some had wooden chopping blocks that looked well used. I imagine there's quite a hive of activity in the mornings when they return from sea. If it weren't a family holiday I'd have definitely gone down there to have a look.

Navagio beach (Shipwreck beach), Zakynthos, Greece. Probably one of the nicest beaches I've ever been to, mainly because there isn't a single shop, hotel or restaurant in sight. There's two ways to get to the beach - by boat, or by base jumping from the high cliff wall.

While exploring the South Eastern coast of Zakynthos (Greece), we came across St.Nicholas church in Vasilikos.

We were lucky to get tickets to see the Artistic Gymnastics at the London 2012 Olympics. It was a great event to watch. Annoyingly you had to pay for children to enter, so we left Matilda at home with the grandparents.

Outside the North Greenwich Arena (Millennium Dome) was this spinning fair ride. I'm not a massive fan of these rides as they usually make me feel sick, but I knew it'd make a good shot. Obviously Matilda didn't come on with us.

Voje valley, near Stara Fužina, Slovenia. We were staying in the small town of Stara Fužina, near Lake Bohinj, so decided to walk to the Slap Mostnice waterfall (also known as Slap Voje). It was a hot, humid walk that took us through the beautiful Mostnica Gorge (Mostnica Korita) and the vivid meadows of the Voje Valley, where we stopped for a picnic.

Slap Mostnice waterfall (also known as Slap Voje), Slovenia. Matilda had fallen asleep in the baby carrier on the walk to the waterfall. It was a very hot day, so we decided to strip her off and let her cool down in the shady forest. When she woke we went to the only restaurant near the waterfall and had two cloudy lemonades, which cost €10!

Lake Bled (Western side), Slovenia. One sunny afternoon we decided to walk round the beautiful Lake Bled. I'd say my favourite part is the South Western side, which is where the locals seem to reside, plus there's no large, white hotels.

The view from Vogel Ski Resort, Lake Bohinj, Slovenia. We took the cable car from Lake Bohinj (Slovenia) up to the Vogel Ski Resort. The views were great and after some harty soup we followed one of the marked circular routes, which took us through a beautiful forest. We began the walk with our buggy, but decided to hide it in a bush and use the baby carrier instead. Luckily the buggy was still there when we got back (and that we remembered which bush it was hidden behind).

We woke to a nice layer of snow in London and couldn't resist a walk in our new Tretorn wellies. It's the first time Matilda had seen snow so she had a great time eating it. I'd highly recommend Tretorn btw, they are extremely comfy and warm - much better than Hunters!

While walking down a narrow street in Marrakech (Morocco), we came upon this really nice blue door and couldn't resist a photo. There was actually a group of locals standing just to the right of us who were pretty bemused at what we were up to.

Tiled floor in Marrakech, Morocco. Matilda was asleep in the buggy, so we had to take the photo without her.

100 meter pool, Hotel Arribas. Praia Grande (near Sintra), Portugal.

Watching our first sunset together. Cabo de São Vicente, Portugal.

Fortaleza de Sagres, Portugal.

The beaches North of Vila Nova de Milfontes, Portugal (where all the nudists go).

The view from the top of the hill. Cotswolds, England.

Picnic. Canbury Gardens, Kingston, London.

Matilda Robinson, born 04.03.11. St.Georges Hospital, London.

We’re having a baby! Our two sets of feet are soon to be joined by a third little pair.

Sunset. Edinburgh, Scotland.

Ko Tao, Thailand.

The view from Resort Utopia. Ko Pha-ngan, Thailand. This is where I proposed to Verity.

Haad Salad beach. Ko Pha-ngan, Thailand.

Spending the night in Bangkok airport, waiting for our connecting flight. Thailand.

Tuc-tuc ride. Chiang Mai, Thailand.

Waiting for our flight at Delhi airport, India.

Pyramid Stage. Glastonbury Festival 2010.

Glastonbury 2010.

Watching the sun-set. Glastonbury 2010.

Selling flower garlands. Glastonbury 2011.

Switzerland.

White sand. Tulum, Mexico.

Somewhere near Livingston, Guatemala.

Boat ride from Guatemala to Belize.

Volcanic rock. Volcàn Pacaya, Guatemala. We ended up in a dodgy Salsa club until 3am. Three hours later our alarm went off and with a rather prominent hangover we began our climb up Volcan Pacaya. Fortunately and somewhat suprisingly the two hour climb fixed our blurry heads and as we neared the top, the heat from the molten lava suddenly hit us. As you'd expect Health & Safety doesn't feature very highly on the Nicaraguan agenda and we were allowed to freely roam the surreal molten landscape and get as close to the lava as our sanity would allow us. Somewhat put off by the soles of peoples shoes starting to melt we decided to have a go at cooking the marshmallows that an entrepreneurial 12 year old had sold us. We attached the mallow to a twig and pointed it towards one of the small pockets of glowing rock that were unnervingly all around us. Unfortunately it burst into flames and fell off the stick to it's firey demise.

Santiago Atitlàn, Guatemala. That’s Volcan Toliman in the background.

Roátan, Bay Islands, Honduras.

Ensuite hostel room. Masaya, Nicaragua. We stayed with a family that had converted a room at the back of their house into a hostel. Our room was an all-in-one toilet, shower, bedroom - what more could you want? Hitch hiked to Volcan Masaya where we got gassed out by the sulpher fumes, then soaked by the rain while walking around the crater, oh the joys of travelling in the wet season. Found a great market and bought some sugar sacks that had been adapted into bags. The locals found it funny we were buying them as I think they're usually something only the 'poor people' use.

Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua.

Playa Negra. Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica. Hired bikes and rode along the coastal road to Puerto Viejo. Along the way we saw Sloths and Toucans sitting in the trees. When we got to Puerto Viejo we found a black sand beach.

Machu Picchu, Peru. After four days trekking through the beautiful Andes mountains we arrive at Machu Picchu. Despite all the photos we'd seen it hadn't prepared us for how incredible it is to see in person. After walking through the ruins we climbed Huayna Picchu with a US Marine that we'd met on the trek, we made it to the top in half an hour!

The view from Huayna Picchu. Machu Picchu, Peru.

Day 3 of our trek through the Andes. We climbed to our highest pass of 4500m. Glad we've had time to acclimatised to the high altitude as some of the other members of the group were really struggling. We continued our trek and descended into a beautiful valley where packs of wild horses were grazing. The weather was perfect and there was no one else on the mountain apart from us - what a beautiful place! At the end of the day we set up camp and the monk who owned the valley came to say hello with his flock of sheep. What an amazing lifestyle.

Isla de la Sol, Lake Titicaca, Bolivia.

Inside the mine. Potosi, Bolivia.

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia.

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia. Waking at 6am we strapped our bags to the roof of the 4X4 and began to drive out to the center of the salt flats in the dark. After an hour we stopped to watch the sun rise, which slowly filled our featureless world with a rich gold glow that stretched as far as the eye could see. After 8 months travelling I can honestly say this part of the world holds the most amazing landscapes I have ever seen - bright red lakes, breathtaking volcanoes, incredible wildlife and welcoming people who somehow manage to live in this hostile environment. I love Bolivia!

Arbol de Piedra, Bolivia. Day 3 of travelling in our 4X4 through Bolivia's Southern Altiplano. After 8 months travelling I can honestly say this part of the world holds the most amazing landscapes I have ever seen - bright red lakes full of Flamingos, breathtaking mountains, incredible volcanic rock formations and welcoming people who somehow manage to live in this hostile environment. I love Bolivia!

Reserva Nacional de Fauna Andina Eduardo Avaroa, Bolivia.

Reserva Nacional de Fauna Andina Eduardo Avaroa, Bolivia.

Kollpa Laguna, Bolivia.

Tilcara, Ruinas del Pucara. Argentina. The dog followed us round all day!

Rio de las Conchas, also known as Quebrada de Cafayate, Argentina. Took the morning bus through the windy mountain road to Cafayate. The bus kept stopping to pick up school children who all had rosy red cheeks from the harsh high-altitude sun. After arriving in Cafayate we quickly found a hostel and headed straight out with a group of people who were visiting Las Conchas gorge - an incredible landscape full of multicolored rock formations. While walking across a dried riverbed I couldn't resist another Feet First shot of all the dried footprints in the mud. For dinner we polished of another amazing steak and pears cooked in Dulche-de-Leche. You can certainly eat well in Argentina.

Tafi del Valle, Argentina.

Tafi del Valle, Argentina.

Iguassu Falls National Park, Brazil.

Mosaic. Argentina.

Cooling off our feet and testing my new Gore-tex boots. Argentina.

Autumn leaves. Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi, Argentina. After hitch hiking out to Lago Gutierrez we began our walk through an incredible forest brimming with the yellows, oranges and greens of autumn up towards Refugio Frey, one of the many mountain huts located around Barriloche. Every corner we turned presented another stunning photographic opportunity and I was keen to try out my new Manfrotto tripod. Eventually we made it to the refugio where we met a group of mountaineers who shared some of their soup with us. Unfortunately for us the clock was ticking so we soon began our descent back down through the beautiful forest only just making it out of the forest before the sun set. Ended the day by polishing off another bottle of Argentinean wine - delightful.

Lago Guiterrez (1700m), Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi, Argentina.

Climbing Volcanoe Villarrica (2847m). Pucon, Chile.

Climbing Volcanoe Villarrica (2847m). Pucon, Chile. The weather finally cleared and we got the green light to climb Volcan Villarrica. We began a slow but steady ascent at 5am in the dark. After two hours of climbing we stopped to fix crampons. Four hours later we finally reached the top and were greeted by a beautiful clear blue sky and incredible views across Chile. The volcano let out a deep rumble just as a girl in our group was standing by the crater edge. Our guide shouted "run for your life", which terified her. Was very funny. On the way down the guide gave us sacks to sit in and we slid down the snow - a section that took two hours to climb, took 20 minutes to slide down. Great fun. When we finally got to the bottom we took a bus to the local thermal pools - a great way to end a tiring day.

Street sign. Valparaiso, Chile.

Thermal pool. Rotorua, New Zealand. Spent the day in Rotorua, which is famous for it's geothermal activity and distinct underlying smell of egg. Took every opportunity to dip our feet in the smelly thermal pools, which helped heal our tired legs after all the walking we've been doing. A lazy day.

On the way down. Cable car ride. Tongariro National Park, Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand.

Tongariro National Park, Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand.

Cable car ride. Tongariro National Park, Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand.

Crocs - a camper van essential. New Zealand.

Glacial lake, New Zealand.

Lake Tekapo, New Zealand.

Blue Mountains, Australia.

Sun set. Blue Mountains, Australia.

In our beloved camper-van, Australia. After a long days drive we couldn't find anywhere to park our van in the dark, so opted for a quiet field that seemed out of the way. At 6am we were hastily awoken by the sound of a tractor driving in circles around our van. As I poked my head out of the window an angry farmer shouted at me "the campsites down the road". It turned out we'd parked in one of his fields and he wasn't best pleased. After making our apologies we promptly departed and drove two hours to meet our good friends Sam and Anna who live in Glebe, Sydney. Sam's band were playing a gig that night, which we went to see. After spending four months travelling, it's great to see some familiar faces!

Whit Sundays, Australia. Verity's Birthday! Despite it being stinger season (when the seas are swarming with killer jellyfish) we decided to head out on a boat trip around the beautiful Whit Sundays. The scenary was beautiful and we braved the waters for a spot of snorkeling where we saw some incredible sea life. The next day the Whitsundays experienced terrible storms leaving a group of tourists stranded on a tour boat for three days. Lucky escape for us.

Cable car. Sentosa Island, Singapore.

Mui Ne white sand dune, Vietnam.

Swimming pool, Mui Ne, Vietnam.

Angkor temples, Cambodia.

Maekok river, Chang Rai, Thailand. Today we scored a new Personal Best in our self-invented game 'how many types of transport can you take in one day'. It all started early in the morning getting a lift in the back of a pickup truck down a very bumpy dirt road. After that we hopped aboard a long-tail boat, a bigger boat, a tuk-tuk, two buses and last but not least the back of a scooter. This is something I love about travelling in South East Asia as the process of getting from A to B, is often such an adventure.

Treking in The Golden Triangle, Thailand.

Elephant ride. Chaing Mai, Thailand.

Foot massage. Ayuthaya, Thailand.

Wat Ratchaburana, Thailand.

The cliff steps between Beer and Branscombe, UK.

The good ship P&O. Somewhere between France and England.

Seaford cliffs with Murphy the dog and George (Verity’s brother). UK.

Holkham sand dunes. Norfolk, England.

Holkham sand dunes. Norfolk, England.

A beach near Sinemorets, Bulgaria.

Bâlea Lake, Romania.

Watching the world Cup in our hostel. Romania.

Skiing. Zell Am See, Austria.

Brandscombe cliffs, Devon, England.

Leaving Split, Croatia.

Krka National Park, Croatia.

Krka National Park, Croatia.

Dugi Otok, Croatia.

Flea Market. Jeu de Balle, Brussels. Wherever we go Verity has an incredible knack of finding markets and today was no exception as while roaming the streets of Brussels we chanced upon an incredible Flea market full to the brim with trinkets, gems and long lost treasures that had us exploring the tightly filled Jue de Balle for hours. As usual I had to refrain Verity from buying half the market and eventually managed to drag her away to sample some of Brussels finest beverages at the aptly named shop 'Beer Mania'.

Flea Market. Jeu de Balle, Brussels.

This is where it all began. Brighton beach, England.