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This is part 53 of the puzzle series Around the World in Many Days. Each part is solvable on its own.


Dear Puzzling,

The black and white circles in this grid form a Masyu puzzle. Draw one continues loop that visits every circle. When passing through a white circle, the loop must go straight through the circle, and then immediately make a turn in the next cell on at least one side. When passing through a black circle, the loop must make turn in the circled cell and continue straight on both sides.

The background grid (including blue/white given letters) is a word chain. Answers are written anticlockwise in the given order, starting from the bottom-left corner. Each answer shares one letter with the preceding one. Answer lengths have been omitted, but I can tell you that every answer is between 5 and 10 letters long.

Today I have explored the incredibly diverse nature of a remote tropical archipelago. Can you guess where I am?

Love, Gladys.

Empty grid
Masyu on Penpa+
Word chain on Penpa+

Cryptic clues
1. Running, jumping, etc., disturbed Al? The jerks!
2. 50 struck by violent criminal – mothers warn their children about him
3. "People maybe resorting to piracy for stronger AI" – Der Spiegel piece
4. Emirate's ruler given a real jackalope's head
5. Reach for TV broadcast showing amphibious vehicle
6. Rock group interrupts Tool playing musical effect
7. As an example, Bach's tongue perhaps is for the Germans
8. Levelheaded emperor giving away gold in British art gallery
9. Key listening device listened to men's magazine
10. Not prepared for a sort of extreme, drinking water in Turin
11. Going over section of gasoline pipeline – that'll give you an adrenaline rush
12. Reorganisation of index dismissed


Gladys will return in Anyone Seen My Snorkel?

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  • $\begingroup$ How does the two puzzles connect, or is that part enigmatic? $\endgroup$
    – Sunny Lu
    Feb 2 at 12:57
  • $\begingroup$ @SnySmartie No explicit rules for that part. So maybe it is enigmatic, although it shouldn't be a huge mystery once you have two solved grids. $\endgroup$
    – Jafe
    Feb 2 at 13:11

2 Answers 2

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Completed word chain:

word chain grid

1. Running, jumping, etc., disturbed Al? The jerks! || ATHLETICS - ALTHE* + TICS
2. 50 struck by violent criminal – mothers warn their children about him || STRANGER - STRANG(-l)ER
3. "People maybe resorting to piracy for stronger AI" – Der Spiegel piece || RAIDERS - _R AI DER S_
4. Emirate's ruler given a real jackalope's head || SHARJAH - SHAH containing A + R + J_
5. Reach for TV broadcast showing amphibious vehicle || HOVERCRAFT - REACHFORTV*
6. Rock group interrupts Tool playing musical effect || TREMOLO - TOOL* containing REM
7. As an example, Bach's tongue perhaps is for the Germans || ORGANIST - ORGAN + IST
8. Levelheaded emperor giving away gold in British art gallery || TEMPERATE - EMPER(-or) inside TATE
9. Key listening device listened to men's magazine || ESQUIRE - sounds like ESC WIRE
10. Not prepared for a sort of extreme, drinking water in Turin || EXTEMPORE - EXTREME* containing PO
11. Going over section of gasoline pipeline – that'll give you an adrenaline rush || EPIPEN - _NE PIPE_<
12. Reorganisation of index dismissed || NIXED - INDEX*

Masyu solution (credit to Sny Smartie for beating me to this one - be sure to check out their answer for a full solution path, and leave an upvote while you're there!):

completed masyu


To find Gladys, let's do the classic Jafe trick of

overlaying the grids:

the masyu grid overlayed on top of the word chain

Looking at

only the letters not covered by the loop, we can spell out RAJAAMPAT,

which means that Gladys is exploring

the RAJA AMPAT ISLANDS in Indonesia!

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Partial answer for Masyu:

enter image description here

Obvious deductions:

enter image description here

Now

the clue on R1C3 must connect downwards, and R5C2 cannot be satisfied enter image description here

Then

We get to enter image description here Noting that the red line is forced since the R4C2 must bend back down, and hence R6C2 is forced to go straight, and hence R4C2 must turn immediately. (We can also abuse the uniqueness of the solution.)

Therefore

R4C8 cannot go horizontal for otherwise R2C8 is stuck (and solution is not unique). enter image description here And obvious deductions give enter image description here

We can then note that

R8C5 cannot be horizontal since otherwise R8C3 is stuck, so following obvious deductions: enter image description here

Since

Connecting R8C3 to R8C4 will isolate R9C4, we can follow more deductions to get enter image description here

Finally,

R8C6 must connect to R7C6 to avoid shortcircuiting and hence the endgame is trivial, yielding the solution.

That took me more than it should have... :(

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