15
$\begingroup$

This is part 57 of the puzzle series Around the World in Many Days. Each part is solvable on its own.


Dear Puzzling,

This is a bicolour Masyu puzzle. Draw two separate loops in the grid, one red and one blue. Loops connect centres of cells horizontally and vertically and cannot cross over themselves or each other. If a coloured cell is visited by the loop, the loop must be the same colour as the cell. Each circle in the grid must be visited by one of the loops. 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.

Today I have joined a riverboat tour to see floating villages and flooded forests on a large freshwater lake and its river system. Can you guess where I am?

Love, Gladys.

Empty grid
Crossword on Penpa+
Bicolour Masyu on Penpa+

Across
1. Pieces of trivia which may or may not be correct or false at disco production (8)
6. People on the inside have transformed into statues, ultimately standing still (10)
7. Western county's ruthless ruler embraces end of democracy (4)
8. "Poor sap!" – psychiatrist's last words (4)
12. Small core of local team that fights the likes of Doctor Doom, Vulture and Wolverine? (10)
13. Teacher from Ecuador unexpectedly has temperature (8)

Down
1. Building component for cell in a daft city construction (5,4)
2. Cut length of synthetic rope (4)
3. Literally exhausted after working alone (4)
4. Leave one's application into German academy remotely, to start with (9)
5. "I am a Muslim leader!" (4)
9. Cause a shock moving east (4)
10. Submit to retreat? (4, abbr.)
11. Bond is moving west, intent on keeping prisoners (4)


Gladys will return in Cover me, I'm going in!

$\endgroup$
2
  • $\begingroup$ Is the empty blue square supposed to be there? $\endgroup$
    – oAlt
    Commented Mar 23 at 12:37
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @oAlt Yes. Read the rules carefully, though. $\endgroup$
    – Jafe
    Commented Mar 23 at 12:51

1 Answer 1

15
$\begingroup$

Gladys went to

Tonlé Sap, a lake in Cambodia, which also happens to be the biggest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia.

tonlesap
Marker placed by Wikipedia, relief map by User:NordNordWest

The crossword grid and cryptic clues:

enter image description here

Across
1. Pieces of trivia which may or may not be correct or false at disco production (8)
FACTOIDS (a factoid can mean either "a piece of trivia that is correct" or "a piece of trivia that is wrong") = F (false) ATDISCO*

6. People on the inside have transformed into statues, ultimately standing still (10)
MOTIONLESS = MOLES (people on the inside, spies) have INTO* + _S

7. Western county's ruthless ruler embraces end of democracy (4)
MAYO (western county in Ireland) = MAO (Mao Zedong, "ruthless ruler") embraces _Y

8. "Poor sap!" – psychiatrist's last words (4)
SPAT (words, as in a quarrel) = SAP* + _T

12. Small core of local team that fights the likes of Doctor Doom, Vulture and Wolverine? (10)
SCAVENGERS ("vulture and wolverine?") = S + (-lo)C(-al) + AVENGERS

13. Teacher from Ecuador unexpectedly has temperature (8)
EDUCATOR = ECUADOR* has T

Down
1. Building component for cell in a daft city construction (5,4)
FATTY ACID anagram

2. Cut length of synthetic rope (4)
CROP = hidden word ("length" as in "a length of rope")

3. Literally exhausted after working alone (4)
ONLY = L_Y after ON (working/activated, as in a device)

4. Leave one's application into German academy remotely, to start with (9)
DISAPPEAR = I'S APP into DE + A_ R_

5. "I am a Muslim leader!" (4)
IMAM &lit: I'M A M_

9. Cause a shock moving east (4)
TASE anagram

10. Submit to retreat? (4, abbr.)
EVAC (evacuation) &lit: CAVE reversed

11. Bond is moving west, intent on keeping prisoners (4)
KNOT = reversed hidden word

The Masyu:

We start with the circles near the edges, because it is clear how the loops pass through them.

enter image description here

It is not hard to see why the right side quickly becomes this (use the white circle and anti-loop rules):

enter image description here

And thus the lines through the black circles are forced. As one of them is in a blue square, the line passing through the circles must be blue.

enter image description here

Now, there is only one way that a line can pass through the circle in the red square in the bottom right:

enter image description here

Using the anti-loop rule and the rule that blue and red loops must be separate, we get:

enter image description here

The white circle immediately above the bottom end of the blue loop can only be passed through by the loop in one way. Also, the top end of the blue loop cannot pass through the white circle in the blue square because it breaks the white circle rule: the line will not have turned immediately on either side of the circle. So that end goes up, and it forces the line through the white circle in the blue square, and also the line through the two white circles to the left of that. That last line cannot go down to the black circle since again it breaks the white circle rule. So we get this:

enter image description here

And now the vertical part of the loop through the unpassed black circle is forced. Note that the end at the bottom has to turn according to the white circle rules.

enter image description here

Now that part of the loop cannot be blue, because this will trap one of the ends of the part of the red loop at the bottom; it cannot connect to another red part. So that is red. Hence the end of the loop that was “trapped” earlier now has one and only one way to connect to the black circle, according to black circle rules. And that also makes the two blue ends right above it connect:

enter image description here

There’s only one way for the red part of the loop at the bottom to proceed:

enter image description here

And the white circle beside the black circle in the red loop can only be passed by a line in one way. Because of this the line is forced to be red. It also forces the line through the two white circles beside the white circle in the blue square to be red. Then, the loop is forced to reach the top:

enter image description here

Let’s not forget the top left:

enter image description here

Which forces this:

enter image description here

Finally, we cannot reach the blue square and close the blue loop at the same time. But the rules don’t say that we have to pass through every colored cell, so we can close the loop like this and we are done.

enter image description here

After these,

We can overlay the Masyu loops on the crossword.

enter image description here

Note that there are eight letters not passed through by either loop, and these spell out the answer!

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.