Bugbog – About Us

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Bugbog crew, Ikuko and Julian, in the Sahara Desert, Morocco

The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page
St. Augustine

Bugbog staff: Julian and Ikuko

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Julian and Ikuko heading for an Amazon rainforest camp in Peru.

Julian studied photography at Bournemouth Art College in the south of England and went into photojournalism in Japan after teaching English in a variety of exotic places. He worked with Ikuko, a Japanese writer, on various magazines including Marie Claire Japon, Asahi Graph, Playboy, Outdoor, Gulliver, The Japan Times and Asahi Evening News. The work involved worldwide travel reportage and photography, a great excuse to see more of the weird and wonderful places, especially enjoying such oddities as Papua New Guinea, Nepal, Madagascar, and Indonesia’s Baliem Valley.
After moving to England they started Bugbog in 2000 – with some tech help – but tired of the endlessly grey weather and now live and run Bugbog from Nice in the south of France.
The couple believe that the two essential ‘exotic’ countries that should top everyone’s bucket list are Peru and Myanmar.

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Making friends with the locals, Amazon rainforest, Peru

Bugbog  Mission

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

At the very top of Winay Picchu, above Machu Picchu, Peru

Bugbog is an independent, impartial website with informative travel photos and compact guides for Europe, English-Speaking countries and Exotic Places, run by a couple of dedicated world travellers, Julian and Ikuko, with a little help from their friends.

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Iku being inspected by the local constabulary in Koh Samui, Thailand

Our priorities are: download speed, clarity, simplicity and utility – along with large, good quality photos of destinations to illustrate both the upsides and downsides (that usually involves hordes of tourists but occasionally weapons in the wrong hands). We make an effort to deliver art-farty pictures but the primary aim is to produce stylish but informative photos alongside the written word.

As of 2019 our most popular pages are Festival calendarsMapsBeaches, Photo galleries  and our Destination finder.

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Julian enjoying the Playa Living Room, Burning Man, Nevada, USA

Bugbog is intended as a destination finder and travel guide to help holidaymakers quickly and efficiently choose the best worldwide holiday spot according to their needs and holiday date. We do not sell holidays or flights, though we link to reputable companies that do.

We are not attempting to be a detailed reference, but rather a compact and inspirational guide for fast, informed destination decision-making. Use us, then buy the guide book!

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Iku entertaining the troops in Sana’a market place,  North Yemen

Bugbog name means…?

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

En route for Madagascar as official photographer/journalist team to cover French endurance team racing.

Bugbog is an abbreviation of the dying words of George V in 1936. Bognor Regis was a seaside town visited by the Royal Family in the 1920s.
Standing beside King George’s sick bed, one of his ministers said, “Cheer up, your Majesty, you’ll soon be at Bognor again. ”
The king groaned, “Bugger Bognor! ” and died.
True? Well, we like to think so. Residents of Bognor Regis probably disagree.

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Meeting super-cute lemurs in Berenty Reserve, Madagascar

Some reviews

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Doing the fake tango in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Wanderlust magazine Travel Awards: Readers voted Bugbog at #6 out of 500 travel websites in a satisfaction league table. [Lonely Planet was #1]. The Editor commented: ‘. . . It’s surprising this [Bugbog] didn’t score higher considering the inspiring travel photo galleries, the useful links to other relevant sites and the range of quirky feature sections to help broaden your plans. . . ‘

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Tongariro moai on Easter Island, Chile.

‘I was surprised, amused, and impressed by what you have done. I found it useful for the kind of travel I like to do, and the destination and weather information is consistent with my experience and knowledge. ‘ Marc Brosius, Round-The-World Travel Guide

‘Bugbog. . . offers impartial advice and an entertaining design. You can search by month for the most colourful, cultural, historic and wildlife destinations. ‘ Tony Dawe, The Times

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Baliem Valley men guiding Ikuko through the mud, West Papua.

‘. . really, really nice; excellent pictures, cool concept. ‘ Patrick Wullaert, Travel Chat website

A very nice site, excellent design, clever original graphics, great photos, and your content is informative, entertaining, presented well and easy to access. A worthy enterprise and a positive contribution to the Web. Thanks for helping make the Web a more interesting, useful and attractive place to visit. I really enjoyed my visit to your site and will return again when time permits : ) ‘ Bill Darling, Critical Mass [Internet Resource Guide]

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Snorkelling from a pontoon onto the Great Barrier Reef near Cairns, Australia.

‘If you want to make a more informed choice of travel destination, this site may be for you. A thoroughly refreshing change. ‘ Jules Grant, Media Business Magazine

‘From the striking first page to the impressive picture galleries and excellent links to travel information, this is an extraordinarily vibrant site. . . . enthusiasm shines through. . ‘ The Times [Travel/Web section]

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Ikuko can’t stop playing with animals, never mind that they are equipped with deadly weaponry. Moorea, South Pacific.

A very well thought-out and constructed site. I applaud their decision to step back and produce a robust, functional site that really delivers without showing off. . . it becomes absorbing as you search for obscure details or links, and you may spend longer on this site than expected. It’s certainly found a place in my ‘Favourites’. Adrian Mann, TravelMole site-of-the-week review.

‘. . primary purpose seems to be to inspire. Completely independent, it gives destination ideas. . . Packed with inspirational photos, it will get your feet itching. ‘ Lyn Hughes, Wanderlust Magazine

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Ikuko again attracting hordes of warlike men, in this case Huli Wigmen in Papua New Guinea.

‘. . . few individuals write as well or as entertainingly as this. . . An eclectic collection of mostly long-haul travelogues with great photos, it is designed to help stimulate independent travel choice and succeeds comfortably. ‘ Listed at #4 of Steve Keenan’s 50 favourite travel websites, The Times

‘One of the best guides to more exotic locations, it is as absorbing and exotic as the destinations it covers. ‘ Web User (5 stars – maximum)

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

Julian learning to drive a dog sled in Hokkaido, north Japan.

Bugbog senior staff, Ikuko and Julian

All very impressed by Bryce Canyon, Zion Canyon and Arches National Park in Utah, USA