Showing posts with label travel photos. Show all posts
Showing posts with label travel photos. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Review of Canon PowerShot SX 130 IS~Best Point and Shoot Digital Camera!

Canon PowerShot photo of Venice
Basilica in Venice, Italy

My Review of the Canon PowerShot SX 130 IS Point and Shoot Camera

I used to hate taking photos because it was so hard and most of the time my pictures didn't come out that well. In fact out of a roll of film I would keep only one or two. I solved the problem years ago by buying postcards everywhere I traveled. After all, a photographer already got the perfect shot and it was cheaper than developing all that film and then throwing away most of the photos anyway.  So I would just buy the coolest postcards everywhere I went and always have great photos. But none of the photos had me or my family in them and that's a problem when you are doing scrapbooks.

Canon PowerShot photo of building in Rome, Italy
Old building by the Colosseum, Rome, Italy

So a few years ago when digital cameras came out, I thought maybe I could try again, because now when the photos are bad I can just delete them! No more wasted film and money. So I took the plunge. What I did was ask some of my photographer friends for suggestions and based on those, and my preference for a point and shoot camera,  I bought a Canon PowerShot SX 130 IS and I couldn't be happier!


Canon PowerShot photo of Hong Kong
Hong Kong, from Victoria Peak on a Misty morning

Now if you are a technical person who wants all the specs and that kind of stuff, you might not want to read my review of this awesome camera because what I love about it is that even someone like me who hates all that stuff and doesn't even know where to begin to talk about that can use it and take great photos! But I will say a few things about it anyway, for the non techie crowd.

Features of the Canon PowerShot SX 130 IS


 It has an auto setting and I just leave it on there and voila, good shots most of the time. It has a built in zoom, so I just adjust the zoom and it refocuses itself instantly! How cool is that? Now for those of you who understand the F stop settings and the like, it has those available too, but I never use them; I keep it on auto all the time. It has a built in flash and it tells you if you need to activate it! That just means raise the flash. (no light bulbs to buy either) And the thing I really like is that even when it says I need the flash, if I'm in a church or museum where they prohibit flash, I still am able to get a great shot most of the time. More coolness! It also has a huge viewfinder, basically the whole back of the camera is the viewfinder! The photo below was taken in a church where no flash is allowed. Can you believe that?


Canon PowerShot photo of Carcassonne
Rondele, Cathedral in Carcassonne, France

My husband has a Nikon top of the line digital camera and he even thinks some of my shots are better than the ones his camera takes. (He likes to play with the settings though, so that's probably the reason. I tell him to just put it on auto, but no, he has to be all fancy.) I have an iPhone and it has a camera, but the photos from this camera are way better so I will always carry it. ( It's not very heavy.) It was not an expensive camera either considering all its features and the quality of its photos; I got it on sale for less than $200!



Canon PowerShot photo of Sydney Harbor
Sydney Harbor Opera House, Australia


Another thing I like is that it takes regular AA batteries, not those lithium expensive ones that are hard to find. Just pop into any grocery or drug store and you are set to go. Really, it's been so fun to finally take photos that I'm happy to keep and can actually have some fun family shots too. So if you want a camera that takes great shots without having to know all the technical details of cameras, I highly recommend the Canon PowerShot SX 130 IS!

All the photos on this page are from my little digital camera so you can see the variety possible. 

Here are more of the photos I took on my trip around the world, 2014-2015 which I'm still enjoying! You can see more photos and stories at Peace, Love, Travel Light.


Canon Powershot photo of Albi France
Mary and Jesus, St. Cecile Cathedral, Albi, France


Canon Powershot photo of Albi street in France
Lights in Albi, France, Christmas 2014

Canon Powershot photo of Australia
Blue Mountains, Australia


All Photos © Heather Burns, 2014. Please do not copy.









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Wednesday, December 24, 2014

A Guide to France and a Review of It...Well, More Like a Love Letter!

Why I Love France! 

I'm traveling in Europe, and decided to spend a while in France. It's just as awesome as everyone says! Well not everyone thinks so, of course, and France has a reputation for being unkind to Americans, but my husband and I wonder why. Everywhere we go we are met with kindness and people go out of their way to help us.  This is a welcome change from our Italian experience!


Colosseum Rome
Colosseum, Rome, Italy

Yes we loved Italy;  the ruins, the food, the art, the beauty, and everyone at all our hotels. But the average Italian on the street? Not so much. They all seem in a hurry, and not interested in helping anyone, let alone Americans who don't speak Italian. In fact they seem sort of angry. 

If we hadn't had our guidebooks, and my Google translator app for my phone, I think we would have been lost a lot more than we were. (We were totally lost several times in Florence and walked miles out of our way!) They are sort of rude, even to each other. Just not what I expected at all.

Like I said, the people in hospitality are generally nice. But don't get me started on the people at the train stations! (The ticket office people I mean.) At restaurants they can be either really nice, or really snotty. It's a toss up!

Florence Italy
Florence, Italy


We Love France Even More Than Italy! 

But we love France! Everyone here seems generally happy and nice and they go out of their way to help, not just the hospitality people, everyone on the street. I had 4 different men try to help me with my luggage at the train station even when it meant they might miss their own train! And the station employees are also very nice and helpful. 

Our train to Lyon broke down so it was unavailable; a train employee cheerfully informed us they would find a solution, and they did!  20 minutes later a bus arrived to take us to Lyon and he drove like a madman to get us to the station on time to make our connection. (We barely made it!)  We were not even able to get to our correct car or we would have missed the train.  

I was worried after our Italian train experiences, but not to worry.  The French ticket agent just smiled and said no problem, you're on the train and that's what counts. So refreshing! All the people around us smiled and smiled. They even tried to talk to us and since I speak some French it was totally enjoyable. 


Toulouse France
Saint Sernin Basilica, Toulouse, France

So here we are in Toulouse which is sort of like a mini Paris. It's called the Pink city because many if not most of the buildings are constructed from pink bricks. And it's breathtakingly beautiful too.  Since it's Christmas time, there are lights everywhere, and everyone seems to be in a great mood.  

But the difference between France and Italy  is that when French people hear us speaking English, they stop and tell us where to go for good food!  Ah, the French and their food. All I can say is the reputation is deserved. We love it! 


Palm Tree Cathedral Toulouse France
Jacobins Convent ceiling, Toulouse, France also known as the Palm tree ceiling

Before we left the USA, I checked out several travel books, and after my research I decided that the Fodor's ones are not only tried and true, but they are the most helpful for the kind of traveling we are doing; we don't have a schedule or a plan other than to stay where we like the vibe, and move on after we're done exploring. So if you're going on a trip, I highly recommend the Fodor's guides! We are using this one: Fodor's France 2015 (Full-color Travel Guide).

But there are older ones available too, and of course guides for any country you can imagine.  So far every recommendation has been totally helpful and thorough. I don't think you can go wrong using a Fodor's Travel guide!

For more stories and photos about my travels, follow my travel blog: Peace, Love, Travel Light!  More countries coming up! Do you have a favorite European country? Let me know, as we are open to seeing new ones! 

All photos,© Heather Burns




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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

EVA Airlines Goes the Extra Mile!

Review of EVA Airlines


Want to fly to Asia and haven't picked your airline? I've discovered a fantastic airline company, EVA Airlines.  We booked our trip to Hong Kong online at FlightHub.com which a travel group I belong to suggested and we could not be happier with our experience of EVA Airlines! (I booked our whole trip at FlightHub.com and it was smooth as silk with no problems whatsoever.)

First of all the fare was outrageously low, only $521 each from Los Angeles to Hong Kong including taxes and landing fees. It's a long long way to  Hong Kong! 

Secondly, or in my case, I should say first of all, they have Hello Kitty Jets! Okay, everyone who knows me knows I love Hello Kitty so that was the clincher for booking the deal. Then while in Taipei we discovered they have a Hello Kitty lounge in the terminal! How cool is that for Hello Kitty lovers.  

Sadly we were running to catch our connecting flight, so I could not stop to take a photo of the lounge but I did get a snapshot of the in flight magazine which did happen to feature that cute little character.

Hello Kitty magazine
Hello Kitty cover from EVA Airlines in flight magazine


So that had me enthralled but the service and the attitude of the attendants was just over the top fantastic! The attendants were all Chinese beautiful girls with porcelain skin and very sweet mannerisms. 

Then there is the fact that we got 3 full course meals for that flight! Not junk airline food either, real gourmet meals. They served things like salmon with dill sauce and veggies, roast beef with veggies, ham and cheese omelettes, rosemary chicken and rice, and all the meals came with wonderful desserts too. (plenty of chocolate!)

Plus they let you check 2 bags of luggage free too, unlike most USA airlines.  Then there were the planes themselves which were very beautiful inside and outside both. And despite the planes being gigantic, the pilots on both flights landed them like they were feathers. I just can't say enough good about this airline! 

We will definitely fly on EVA Air again! I even looked to see if they have an affiliate program; I was just bowled over by them.

Hong Kong photo
Hong Kong view from my hotel room


So if your travel plans include Asia, give them a try. You'll be happy you did! And for more photos and comments on Hong Kong and other destinations, visit Peace, Love, Travel Light


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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Seeing your Home Town- Don't Forget the Camera

When you are out and about the town this summer be sure to remember to take your camera.  We always seem to take our camera on vacation but often we forget about taking photos when it comes to activities in our own town.

I am from the St. Louis Missouri area and when my grandchildren visit from Atlanta, Georgia I try to take them around and show them the sites.  I have taught them to take photos of the places they see and they love to look for photo opportunities.
Here are some photos of a recent trip to The Butterfly House.
The first was taken by Rachel who is 10.

Ella who is 8 also loves to take photos.  Here is one she took outside The Butterfly House
Taking photos of their home town and sharing them online is a popular activity.  Here are some
home town area articles.


Here is another photo from my hometown.  It was taken at the St. Louis Zoo.

Wherever you live I hope you will share your photos from your area in your writing. 



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