Cycling the Lakeside Way at Kielder Water and Forest Park

Aiming to cycle around the lake inside of four hours while pausing along the way to view the landscape, birdlife and artworks proved a challenge. We underestimated. With the benefit of hindsight — now that I’ve climbed those hills on the northern shore — I’d pack a picnic and make a day of it. Kielder Castle, the various hides and artworks mean there’s plenty to spent time at along the way.

A jet boat ride on the Niagara River

The hull of our jet boat slaps down against the churning surface of the Niagara River. Jolting forward I glance up to see curled fingers of white water hanging in the air above me. The jet boat’s engine grinds and whirs, counteracting the prodigious power of the fast-flowing waterway. Then the airborne water unfurls, like a time-lapse video sequence of an opening fern, slapping me in the face.

A rhino walk in Zimbabwe’s Matobo National Park

“This is their territory. This is where they live. We try to keep them as wild as we can. Even though we visit them on a regular basis they are not tame animals. They’re still wild and we respect them. It’s two-and-a-half tonnes of sudden action; zero to 60 kmph in just a few seconds. It can be quite surprising how quickly they get up,” says Norman Bourne of BlackRhino Safaris.

A crazy night at Ghetto Golf in Newcastle

Ghetto Golf has opened at Hoult’s Yard in Newcastle. Not sure what to expect? Picture 18 holes of crazy golf over two levels, walls daubed with multicoloured street art, boozy cocktails and tasty comfort food served from a hatch. Disclosure: Stuart Forster, the author of this post, was invited to attend the pre-launch party at...

The 2019 edition of Kynren at Bishop Auckland

The Roman and Norman invasions, cultural flourishing of the Elizabethan Age and the turmoil of the Civil War count among the nationally significant episodes of history depicted during the 90-minute show. The appointment of Bishop Bek of Durham and the northeast’s role in powering the Industrial Revolution count among those with a more local focus.

Bruegel’s Eye in Belgium’s countryside

This project, for me, was a discovery of all the other things that Breugel is — the intelligence of his compositions and the landscapes in his paintings. People like Breugel’s work a lot and identify with it as typically Flemish or Belgian culture and its joie de vivre. At the same time he really is a very interesting painter who invented the snow landscape as a genre and played an important role in developing the landscape as a genre of painting,” added the curator of Breugel’s Eye.

Celebrating the life and works of Leonardo da Vinci

Some of the anatomical details that he sketched were so accurate that they were not verified scientifically until as recently as the 1980s. He was the author of notable studies such as Proportions of the Human Figure, a work often known simply as Vitruvian Man, which includes text on the squaring of the circle and the observation that the length of a human’s outstretched arms is typically equal to a person’s height.