There are few places in the world where you can sunbathe on white sand beaches while admiring volcanoes in the distance; where you can snorkel with turtles right off the beach and yet pay practically nothing for your accommodation. Like the handful of other destinations that fit that description, the Gili Islands are pretty special — which is no doubt why so many of you end up arriving at An Unfamiliar Sky looking for scraps of information about them. I went to the Gili Islands as part of a six-week trip around Indonesia in 2010 and along with my time in…

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In my last post I wrote about how I booked an amazing ski holiday in France for myself and my friends for mere pennies (well… almost). What I didn’t tell you (although you might have guessed from the photos) was how much fun the trip was. It’s been a few years since I last skied and it felt so good to be back on the slopes, and with some of my best friends too. Not only did we tear down the pistes until we thought our legs would fall off… We also posed… And postured… And were super-silly. We apres-skied… And…

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I’ve been skiing since I was about nine years old, and so I know by now that’s there no way around it completely: skiing just ain’t cheap. That said, if you’re wily, there are ways you can book an awesome ski holiday on a more limited budget. If you’re a family and you’re careful, you can self cater in an apartment with the kids of a sofa bed, for example — but this isn’t always feasible if you’re travelling in a non-family group. In January, six of us decided we were really determined to book a skiing holiday this year.…

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