Ian Leiman: Blog https://photos.leiman.fi/blog en-us (C) Ian Leiman ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) Tue, 30 Aug 2016 08:22:00 GMT Tue, 30 Aug 2016 08:22:00 GMT https://photos.leiman.fi/img/s/v-5/u665037920-o1034083807-50.jpg Ian Leiman: Blog https://photos.leiman.fi/blog 120 120 2016 Summer trip to Italy https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2016/8/2016-summer-trip-to-italy Me and my wife Minna did our summer trip of 2016 to Northern Italy.

We flew to Milan, and for there traveled by train to Monterosso (Cinque Terre region), Florence, Venice and back to Milan, and then flew back home. We staye 2 nights at each place and traveled 10 days in total. I took 2000 pictures, and have placed them online into this gallery, organized into sub-galleries by each day:


From Milano we continued to Monterosso by train and stopped at Genova.  


At Monterosso we stayed 2 nights. On Sunday we hiked part on the blue trail over the mountains to the next village. Then we went by train to all the other 5 Terre villages.


Then on Monday we continued to Firenze, and stopped at La Spezia and Pisa.


On Tuesday we took two guided tours and saw all the most famous places of Firenze.


Then on Wednesday we took the fast train to Venezia.


On Thursday we toured the main island and also visited Murano.


On Friday we took the fast train back to Milano.


On Saturday we went to see the Milano cathedral, and museums.


On Sunday we flew back home.

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) Italy https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2016/8/2016-summer-trip-to-italy Mon, 01 Aug 2016 08:30:00 GMT
Photos from Maldives scuba diving safari 2016 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2016/2/photos-from-maldives-scuba-diving-safari-2016 I just returned from Maldives where I spent 2 weeks on  scuba diving safari. The trip started 8th Feb  2016 and ended Feb 21st.

We did it on Werner Lau company's MY Sheena as a live-aboard type of excursion. The cruise started from the Meemu Atoll at Medhufushi island, and from there we sailed south all the way to Gaafu atoll near equator though the Thaa and Laamu atolls. We did on average 3 dives per day and in total 35 dives. Most of these where channel or "kandu" dives in rough currents and the objective was to see sharks, rays and other big fish. On the trip I had a Canon 7D camera for stills photography and a Gopro Hero 4 Silver for shooting HD videos.

The "official" trip log by our dive guides Alec & Tore can be found from here: http://www.wernerlau.com/sheena/logbook.html,  by selecting our trip date 07.02.2016 - 27.02.2016

The pictures and videos will gradually appear into this gallery: 


The scuba dive technical logs can be found from here:


The gallery slide show below shows a first collection of pictures from the trip:

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) Maledives diving scuba https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2016/2/photos-from-maldives-scuba-diving-safari-2016 Fri, 26 Feb 2016 11:50:09 GMT
Photos from New Zealand https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2016/1/photos-from-new-zealand Once we got to New Zealand, I discovered that the Internet connection to the "outside world" was quite thin. The bandwidth to Zenfolio servers and to basically anywhere outside NZ was so poor, that it made no sense to upload photos or anything from NZ. A couple of Facebook posts every now and then was occationally possible. On the way back home we stopped at Hong Kong for a few days.

So only when I got back home to Finland, I was able to sort out the photos and upload them to Zenfolio. In total there are about 5000 picture and videos.

Daily photos are now here in this group, sorted by Country and then by each day:


And a small selection of pictures from NZ:


ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2016/1/photos-from-new-zealand Mon, 18 Jan 2016 15:27:55 GMT
2015-12-20 Tokyo, 2nd day https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/2015-12-20-tokyo-2nd-day We slept like logs, being so tiered from two days without proper sleep and the jet lag of +7 hour time zone difference. Only the alarm clock at 9 AM woke me up. The curtain was closed, so when I tried to open it to see outside, Minna got really upset for me putting on such a bright light. But that bright light was the sun :-)

We quickly went to have the hotel breakfast, which wasn't included in price, but could be had for a discounted price if you buy tickets from the reception. 

First we went to see the Ueno district by subway. The park and the zoo, shrine north of the station. At the zoo we saw Panda and Polar bears.

Then the shopping streets south. Then we continued with the subway to Asakusa to see the Sensoji Kannon Temple. Then by subway to the Skytree building, the 2nd tallest in the world. Again we saw the city light from hih above, but this time it was from 250 meters, and you can see really far. The city is endless.

Then the last thing to see was the Harajuku fashion district, which required a 30 minute subway trip across the city. On the Harajuku main street and the Takeshita St. you can see all the latest fashions in clothing. Then it was time for a dinner and back to hotel. Next afternoon the journey continues...

Gallery from the entire 2nd day at Tokyo:

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) New Zealand Tokyo https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/2015-12-20-tokyo-2nd-day Sun, 20 Dec 2015 15:47:42 GMT
2015-12-19 First day at Tokyo https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/2015-12-19-first-day-at-tokyo We left from Helsinki on the Finnair flight AY073 to Tokyo Narita. It was really busy to days before leaving, and for Minna it was especially hard, as she had to do a lot of work before leaving. Actually missing last night's sleep almost completely and fixing crashed IT systems to the very last minute before leaving to the airport.

Finally on the Friday (18th Dec 2015) afternoon we managed to get into the Finnair business lounge to start off the journey with glasses of sparkling wine.

The flight to Tokyo was uneventful. Being so tiered, we slept though most of it and arrived to Tokyo Narita at scheduled time on Saturday morning 9 AM local time. Luggage arrived promptly and we cleared immigration and customs quickly. Then we bought tickets to the Skyliner train with 2 days Tokyo subway. It wasn't immediately clear where to get the tickets, but by asking around it didn't take that much time. The tickets cost 5100 Yen per person, and the biggest surprise was that you could not by them with credit card, cash only. The Skyliner train was comfortable and took us to Ueno station in less than an hour.  Outside it was sunny, 11 degrees. Then at Ueno station we took the subway Hibiya line to Akihibara, where I had reserved hotel Remm Akihibara from booking.com. We arrived just before noon, but the checkin time was actually 3 PM. But as a special favour, we got our room early without extra charge. The room was nice, modern and very clean, but also quite tiny. But we intended only sleep there, so good enough for our purposes. The location was very convenient, as it was quite easy to reach from the airport, but excellent for also going anywhere in the city by the subway.

On the first day we went to see the Ginza area, then Roppongi district, and finally see the night views of the city from the Tokyo tower. Then back to hotel for a dinner at a Korean restaurant and a long overdue overnight sleep.

Here is the complete gallery of the 1st day pictures:

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/2015-12-19-first-day-at-tokyo Sun, 20 Dec 2015 15:11:58 GMT
Maledives 2009, scuba diving safari https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/maledives-2009-scuba-diving-safari I was inspired by an upcoming scuba diving trip to Maledives, and decided to finally update the pictures and videos from my previous trip I did back in 2009. From that trip in 2009 I only had a small selection of low resolution pictures at this site.

Now I finally managed to upload everything here in original quality. There are over 4000 pictures, which take up 12 Gbytes of storage, and it took half a day to upload them all.

The safari was done early February 2009. There is a Finnish language trip report at my scuba blog at:

All of the material is now at this group page.

Well, almost. The videos still need editing...


ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) Maledives scuba https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/maledives-2009-scuba-diving-safari Sat, 05 Dec 2015 23:21:30 GMT
New Zealand 2015-2016 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/new-zealand-2015-2016 Me and my Minna will be spending our xmas holidays of 2015/16 by traveling to New Zealand. This will be a 3 week trip, where we first have a 2 night layover in Tokyo, and then we drive around the islands of New Zealand for 2 weeks, and finally on the way back to Finland we have a 3 night layover in Hong Kong. Layovers make the flights a little more bearable, as they are 10 to 11 hour flight segements, and doing two of those back to back really hurts my back.

Below picture shows the global flight plan, staring 18 Dec 2015, ending 9 Jan 2016. The date notation is of the forform DD.MM.YYYY, which we use in Finland.

Flights from Helsinki (HEL) to Tokio Narita (NRT), to Auckland (AKL), to Hong Kong (HKG), to Helsinki (HEL).

The main attraction of the trip is touring New Zealand. First we spend a few day on North Island visiting some relatives. Then we fly to South Island, drive around the NZ Southern Alps, take the Interislander ferry back to North Island. THe route can be seen in the picture below.

NZ route 22 Dec 2015 to 5 Jan 2016

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) Hong Kong New Zealand Tokyo https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/12/new-zealand-2015-2016 Tue, 01 Dec 2015 14:45:00 GMT
New look for 2015 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/2/new-look-for-2015 Zenfolio has introduced lot of new features and appearance options, so I decided to give to my site a new look as well.  

I completely changed the way the site looks. I hope you like it :-)


ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2015/2/new-look-for-2015 Mon, 16 Feb 2015 13:39:43 GMT
2014 Ischgl ski trip photos https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/3/2014-ischgl-ski-trip-photos highest peak on Ischgl This winter (of 2014) we did our annual big Alpine ski trip to Ischgl in Austria from Feb-15 to Feb-22. In Finland the schools have a winter vacation week, and in Southern Finland it is always the week number 8, the last week of February, so that is the best opportunity to make a trip like this with children. 

This year we flew to München on Saturday Feb-15, and drove to Ischgl over the Bavarian mountains via Garmisch-Partenkirhcen then over the Inn valley and up the Patznauer valley to the village of Ischgl. We had a rented Mercedes Vito, which is just big enough for our family of six. At Ischgl we had rented an apartment with 3 bedrooms and kitchen from the house of Alp Bella. We had six days of skiing at the resort. We had two sunny days, two days with quite heavy snow and then two cloudy days. When we arrived, there was not that much snow, but during our stay the many snowfalls improved the situation a lot, and there was plenty of anckle deep power snow available. The resorts was very nice and it was a good holiday. On Saturday Feb-22 we drove back to München and flew back home.

Click here to see all the pictures from the trip. 


ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) Ischgl ski https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/3/2014-ischgl-ski-trip-photos Wed, 19 Mar 2014 14:42:24 GMT
Camilla's high school prom 2014-02-13 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/2/camillas-high-school-prom-2014-02-13 My daughter Camilla had today her high school "prom". In Finland this traditional event is actually literally translated to English as "The Old Ones' dance", and it is held in middle of the second year of high school end of February. This is unlike in USA, where the prom dance is held at the end of the high school. In Finland the last year students (seniors, who are called Abi's, short for Abiturients) leave school at the end of February, and therefore the second year students then become the oldest class and seniors in school, and therefore there is a good cause to celebrate this major event by performing a ballroom dance event for the parents and then for the entire school. The girls spend a great deal of effort to find a perfect dress for the event, and also boys have to dress formally. A large number of traditional dances are rehearsed and performed at the event. 

Here are pictures I took from the event.

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/2/camillas-high-school-prom-2014-02-13 Thu, 13 Feb 2014 21:30:02 GMT
Cleaning scuba gear after fire https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/cleaning-scuba-gear-after-fire There was a fire at my scuba club's premises. Unfortunately, a great deal of my scuba equipment happened to be there, drying after my last dive. The fire caused a great deal of damage to the equipment.

Here is a link to a longer story about it, but in Finnish language.

Below a gallery of pictures about cleaning the equipment:

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/cleaning-scuba-gear-after-fire Tue, 28 Jan 2014 23:48:46 GMT
Opening of the scuba diving season 2014 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/opening-of-the-scuba-diving-season-2014 On Jan 5, I opened the 2014 scuba diving season in the Baltic Sea. Water was 3 deg-C on the wreck we were diving. I took some picture with my pocket camera. Visibility was typical to Baltic Sea, so not that great.

Finnish speakers will find a slightly longer story from here:


ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/opening-of-the-scuba-diving-season-2014 Fri, 10 Jan 2014 16:01:07 GMT
Diving Mango Bay (Koh Tao) 2013-07-23 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/diving-mango-bay-koh-tao-2013-07-23 On our summer vacation trip to Koh Samui, me and my Minna dived together for one day. The day trip was organized by "Live and Let Dive" center at Koh Samui. The manager Matilda was our guide and took good care of us. Since it was a year from Minna's last dive and she had a serious ear barotrauma previous year, we needed to be extra careful. Therefore we dove the Mango Bay, which is secluded and shallow with sandy bottom and no current. Everything went really well and we did two one hour dives there.

Below are pictures from this trip. Our dive guide Matilda took the pictures from us together underwater.

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) scuba https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/diving-mango-bay-koh-tao-2013-07-23 Sat, 24 Aug 2013 22:00:00 GMT
Koh Samui diving at Sail-Rock 2013-07-15 https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/koh-samui-diving-at-sail-rock We did our yearly summer vacation on 2013 to Koh Samui in Thailand. On one day I went scuba diving on my own to Sail Rock, which is actually near Koh Tao, about one hour north from Koh Samui with a speed boat. I did the trip with the diving center "Live & Let Dive" http://www.liveandletdive.fi/divetrips.html, which has a Finnish owner.

Following slides shows all the pictures from that day trip.

ianleiman@gmail.com (Ian Leiman) https://photos.leiman.fi/blog/2014/1/koh-samui-diving-at-sail-rock Mon, 15 Jul 2013 17:30:00 GMT