Monochromes Over Africa and the Andes

30th to 31st October 2015. Abu Dhabi to Sao Paulo to Santiago, Chile to Punta Arena and the Straits of Magellan (by air).

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This is the first of three posts of monochrome conversions from the Falklands and of the journey there.  This one is aerial shots from Abu Dhabi to the Falklands, part of my epic transfer from Antananariva.  There are colour versions of these images in earlier blog posts.  Following the three posts we journey to South Georgia.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Abu Dhabi Control Tower.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Probably Sudan or South Sudan.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

This image and the next two are probably near the coast of Gabon ot Congo Brazzaville.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel .

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel .

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Descabezado Grande Volcano in the Maule region of Central Chile.

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Lanín, an ice-clad stratovolcano on the border of Chile and Argentina.

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Southern Chile.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Southern Chile.

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Mount Fitzroy.

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Southern Patagonia Icefields and Glaciar Viedma leading to Lago Viedma.

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Somewhere just north of Punta Arenas.

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Choiseul Sound area, just south of Mount Pleasant Airfield.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

As above.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Andes, Black and White, Chile, Falkland Islands, Glacier, Landscape, Monochrome, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

In the plane from Mount Pleasant to Pebble Island.

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The barren highlands of East Falklands.

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Pebble Island to Sea Lion Island

3rd November 2015. Falkland Islands.

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At 11am I flew from Pebble Island to Sea Lion Island in the same light plane that previously took me to Pebble Island.

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If you look carefully you may be able to see the airfield, both along the isthmus and across it.  This is where a SAS raid destroyed the Argentine aircraft on the ground in 1982.

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Moving a bit to the right, there is the edge of the settlement at bottom right under the watermark.

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The large building is the main house where I stayed.

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Moving further along, this is the wharf and the old farm buildings.

The following five images are islets between Pebble Island and West Falkland.

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Brocken Island and subsidiary islets.

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At the east end of East Island.

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Same location, different view.

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Small islands off River Island.

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Probably the east coast of River Island.

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Flying over the barren hinterlands of West Falkland.

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On the east coast of West Falkland, this is Port Howard, the most massive metropolis in West Falkland, with twenty inhabitants and centre of a farm with over 40,000 sheep.

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Still Port Howard, from a different perspective as we fly south west.

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Falkland Sound in the foreground and the cliffs that protest Port Howard from the East.

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Further back and now we can see the Hornby Mountains behind and the weather is closing in.

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Now we can see the entrance to Port Howard Inlet.

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This is now the west coast of East Falkland, Long Point from over Egg Harbour.

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A bit further on, looking back towards the southern edge of Egg Harbour.

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A river in the centre of East Falkland.

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There are many small lakes in the centre of East Falkland.  I know where this is, but can’t supply a name.

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At the far end of Adventure Sound.

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This is at the Bay of Harbours, at the south coast of East Falkland, just to the east of Cow Point.  I don’t have a shot coming in to Sea Lion Island, further south.  It must have been too cloudy there.

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Over the Falklands

31st October 2015. Falkland Islands (by air).

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This post continues my epic 55-hour transfer from Madagascar to the Falkland Islands, in this case in the air over the Falklands.

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The first few images are on the flight from Santiago, but just the part over the Falklands, flying east and a little north from Punta Arenas.  This appears to be Big Samuel Island, near the mouth of Choiseul Sound, not far from Mount Pleasant Airfield.  The clouds have probably just cleared to allow me a view through or we are coming in lower below some of the clouds prior to landing.

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 I think the “mainland” here is Johnson’s Island in Mare Harbour, on the north side of  Choiseul Sound and just south of Mount Pleasant Airfield

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This image and the next two are taken near the previous one but I can’t precisely identify the locations.

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Aerial Photography, Falkland Islands, Landscape, Photography, seascape, Travel

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Aerial Photography, Falkland Islands, Landscape, Photography, seascape, Travel

There are many islands in the Falklands group but the two main islands are West and East Falkland Islands, separated by a deep channel.  East Falkland in turn is almost separated into two islands, but connected by an isthmus.  Choiseul Sound is the western of the two passages of water that almost separates that island.

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We had a wait of an hour or so when we arrived at Mount Pleasant, the international airport of the Falkland Islands, because they were overwhelmed with two planeloads of passengers arriving simultaneously.  When through that, I was able to transfer to the domestic airport and board a tiny plane to fly to Pebble Island.  Because the plane is so small, there are very strict limits for weight and excess baggage.

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The barren highlands of East Falklands.

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Looking down…

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This is now the coast of East Falkland Island, looking out the left side of the aircraft.  We are looking at Terra Motas Point (at the end of the long peninsula) and in the distance though to Brenton Loch.  This leads to the isthmus with the tiny settlements of Darwin and Goose Green, where East Falkland almost separates into two islands.  This was the site of a major battle in the Falklands War.

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Continuing along the coast.  This and the next image follow on from the previous one.

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Aerial Photography, Falkland Islands, Landscape, Photography, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Falkland Islands, Landscape, Photography, seascape, Travel

This is the strait separating Pebble Island from West Falkland Island.  You can see the strength of the current flowing through.  This was taken from the right side of the aircraft (I was able to photograph out either side).

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And this is the small plane that flew me to Pebble Island (other people in the plane had other island destinations).

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Over the Andes

31st October 2015. Santiago, Chile to Punta Arena and the Straits of Magellan (by air).

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After a brief three-hour nap in a Santiago hotel close to the Airport, I resumed my 55-hour transfer from Antananrivo in Madagascar to the Falkland Islands. I am flying the length of the Andes and very fortunate in both the weather and in having a window seat on the left hand side of the plane.

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Santiago is in a bowl, surrounded by high mountains, which also makes it subject to pollution.  These are some of the mountains to the east of Santiago near dawn.

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Initially it was clear, apart from cloud on distant mountains.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

This volcano is Descabezado Grande in the Maule region of Central Chile, nearly 4,000 metres tall and about 200 km south of Santiago.  Descabezado means “headless” in Spanish, which refers to the flat top.

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This is Lanín, an ice-clad stratovolcano on the border of Chile and Argentina.  Lago Huechulafquen is the lake behind.  Lanín is the symbol of the Argentinian province of Nequén.

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This is probably somewhere in Aysen Province in Chilean Patagonia.  I can’t identify this location through Google Earth.  In general terms,  there’s a point going South on the coast of Chile where there is a mass of islands off the coast separated by channels (sounds?, fjords?).  This is on the mainland from there, looking east at the Andes.

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This and following images show mighty mountains peeking above the clouds.

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A very distinctive river delta here below the clouds.  I thought I might be able to identify it on Google Earth but no, the topography in the general area is much too convoluted.   Perhaps a flood may have changed it too since the last Google Earth photo.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Perhaps Rio Baker in Captán Prat Province but that’s just a guess.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

OK.  I know where we are now. In the distance is Lago O’Higgins (Chilean half)/ Lago San Martin (Argentinian half), just north of where I went in Argentinian Patagonia in 2010.

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Lago O’Higgins/ Lago San Martin again, closer up.

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Here is the ice shelf just north of Mount Fitzroy.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

And here is Mount Fitzroy.  There are a couple of views from land in my 2010 trip in this post (and also the post before).

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Mount Fitzroy, again.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Southerrn Patagonia Icefields and Glaciar Viedma leading to Lago Viedma.  There are some distant glimpses of the glacier in this 2010 post when I was staying at Estancia Helsingfors on the shores of Lago Viedma, and some of Mount Fitroy on the previous post.

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A closer view of Glaciar Viedma.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

By now, all the people seated on the right side of the plane had gotten up and stood in the aisle, admiring the spectacular views.

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On the left is Glaciar Upsala, flowing into Braza Upsala, an arm of Lago Argentina.

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This image and the next one are at branches further south of Lago Argentina.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

This image and the next one, both mysterious, are somewhere just north of Punta Arenas.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

A wreck, probably in the Straits of Magellen.

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Aerial Photography, Andes, Chile, Glacier, Landscape, Mountains, Photography, Punta Arenas, Santiago, seascape, Travel

Still in South America, somewhere between Punta Arenas and the Falklands, not sure exactly where.

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The 55-hour transfer, Part 1

29th to 31st October 2015. Antananariva, Madagascar to AbuDhabi to Sao Paulo, Brazil (and thence to the Falklands).

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I now resume with final posts on my journey to Mauritius, Reunion, Madagascar, Falkland Islands, South Georgia Island and the Atacama Desert. The last post covered Port Dauphin and leaving Madagascar from Tana (Antananariva).

My trigger for this journey was signing on for a cruise to South Georgia Island. I then realised that it was possible to combine this with a photographic tour of Madagascar, there being a little over a week between the two. It seemed appropriate to spend that week in the Falklands because the ship for South Georgia left from there and I was thus minimising my chance of missing the departure. The problem was that the plane for the Falklands left from Santiago in Chile only once every week. At the time there were no cheap direct flights from Johannesburg direct to Sao Paulo that fitted in with my timetable and I chose to save over $1,000 by flying via Abu Dhabi. That left me with a massive 55-hour transfer from Tana to Johannesburg to Abu Dhabi to Sao Paulo to Santiago (where I managed to snatch three hours sleep at a hotel) to Punta Arenas to Port Chalmers to Pebble Island.

This will be the first of three posts of views from my seat on the airplanes. I didn’t have a window seat from Tana to Johannesburg or from Johannesburg to Abu Dhabi so no images there. This post covers the flight from Abu Dhabi to Sao Paulo. No images after that for the night flight from Sao Paulo to Santiago. The second post shows views of the Andes and the third post aerial views of the Falklands.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Landscape, Photography, Sao Paulo, seascape, Travel

Abu Dhabi Control Tower.  Either an example of post-modern architecture, a representation of the crescent moon, or the result of strong winds that weren’t in evidence when I was there.

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A highway near the Airport.  As you can see, this really is a desert environment.

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Dormitory suburbs and an elaborate clover leaf.  One wonders what it’s like living there when the wind gets up and the sand blows in.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Landscape, Photography, Sao Paulo, seascape, Travel

In the Gulf near Abu Dhabi.  Probably an exclusive hotel on the left, perhaps an exclusive residence on the right.  Accessible only from the sea.

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This is five hours later over Africa.  This is an arid region and my guess is Sudan or South Sudan.

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This image and the next one are at a similar location.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Landscape, Photography, Sao Paulo, seascape, Travel

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Landscape, Photography, Sao Paulo, seascape, Travel

Now we are closer to the coast (and nearly a couple of hours later).  The cloud cover is just starting to break up and we can see a large river winding below us.  In each case there are small towns beside the river.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Landscape, Photography, Sao Paulo, seascape, Travel

Here a large town is more visible.

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Abu Dhabi, Aerial Photography, Landscape, Photography, Sao Paulo, seascape, Travel

Now the coast and the Atlantic Ocean.  Looking at the coast in Google Earth I couldn’t map the location but I think it’s probably the coast of Gabon or perhaps Congo Brazzaville.  The previous three images are relatively close to here.

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Now we are on the other side of the Atlantic, seven hours later.  This appears to be Guarujá, a seaside suburb of Santos, the port for Sao Paulo.

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This is Repressa Billings (or Billings Reservoir), the main source of (hydroelectric) power for Sao Paulo.  There are problems with pollution and it was down to 20% of capacity in 2015 as a consequence of an El Niño drought in 2014/15.

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Sao Paulo, the most populous city in South America with 11.2 million people in 2013.

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From Port Dauphin to Tana and Beyond

28th to 29th October 2015. Port Dauphin to Antananariva, Madagascar.

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Continuing on from the previous post, still in Port Dauphin, we walked up the hill behind the wharf area and along some of the streets of town back to our hotel.

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This is an abandoned building on the street we were walking down. Across one of those doorways, I think the far one, was a web and an absolutely enormous spider which must have been a Golden Orb Spider.  I did take a photograph but I didn’t get the focus right.

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Over the road was a small shop with this delightfully colourful display.

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Major street including a three-wheeled tuk-tuk.

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Street photography, Travel

The last image from Port Dauphin. After returning to the hotel we headed for the airport.

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So, now we’re in the air and just outside Port Dauphin.

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Clouds en route.

I had heard lots of stories about Air Madagascar, initially known as Air Mad until they decided that might not be such a good name.  Arbitrarily delayed flights, poor service, inadequately maintained planes, overbooking.  We did get to the airports with lots of time to spare but we didn’t encounter any of that.  The planes were fairly new and the service was fine.

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On the outskirts of Tana now.

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Street photography, Travel

After landing, we headed off to a rather nice old hotel but I didn’t take any images there.

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Next morning, I took these images on the way to the airport from the vehicle.

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Street photography, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Street photography, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Street photography, Travelt

That was the last image from Madagascar though I will post some monochromes much later.

I was about to undertake an epic air journey from Antanariva to Johannesburg to Abu Dhabi to Sao Paulo to Santiago (Chile) to Punta Arenas to Mount Pleasant (Falklands) to Pebble Island.  More of that much later including images from Falkland Islands, South Georgia Island and the Atacama Desert.  But now I am off on another trip and posting will greatly decrease, especially as some places will have no internet.  More on that in the next post….

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Tana to Port Dauphin

24th October 2015. Antanarivo to Port Dauphin, Madagascar.

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Heading south from Tana to Port Dauphin.   Clouds and mountain tops.

Perhaps click for a larger view because seeing the trees atop that near mountain gives a different perspective on scale.

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Travel

Getting closer to Port Dauphin, probably flying at a lower altitude, and now much clearer.

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Travel .

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Travel

There is a person, presumably a fisherman, in a canoe in that bay.

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Aerial Photography, Antananarivo, Landscape, Madagascar, Photography, Port Dauphin, Travel

Not everything is farm land or wilderness.

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