Travels in Tuscany

My fondest memories are sitting at our villa, eating dinners outside and toasting the magic view of Lucca in the distance. The evenings were warm, the food spectacular, the drinks convivial, and the company exquisite. These are the precious memories I cling to. As our week came to a close, we packed up and headed to Pisa for the flight to Lisbon. With my anxiety now peaking and bordering on full panic attack, the flight became an interesting affair. Read More

Travels in Paris

The Arc de Triomphe was within spitting distance of our hotel (we elected not to spit on it). Of all the iconic Parisienne landmarks, this was our favourite. It’s enormous – towering in the center of the Place Charles de Gaulle, with 12 streets radiating out in all directions. We explored Paris on foot, meandering almost all 12 at one time or another. Read More

Travels in the Dordogne

Our first morning we visited the Saint Cyprien farmers market. Oh my lord – how fabulous! I’d heard French farmers markets were pretty special, but they really are pretty special. The produce and the atmosphere, and the cheese and strawberries and nectarines and sausages and tomatoes and baguettes and yoghurt and more cheese and we were in gastronomic heaven! Read More

Travels in Berlin

Yep – I spent a week in Berlin, and by day three I was bored. By the time we arrived in the city that birthed Oktoberfest, the Brandenburg Gate, and Adolf Hitler, we’d been away from home for 46 days. So looking at old rocks, old churches, and old history, was wearing a little thin. As are funny-tasting tap water, pay-to-use toilets, European heatwave, and whatever-that-yellow-stuff-is-they-call-cheese. Read More

Travels in Krakow

The Krakow signal bugle call, or Hejnal Mariacki, dates back to the Middle Ages when it was announcing the opening and the closing of the city gates…The melody abrupt ending is said to commemorate a trumpeter from Krakow who was shot through his throat by a Tatar archer in 1241 when the Mongols besieged the city. Every full hour a golden trumpet shows above Krakow’s central Grand Square in the west window…of the Basilica of the Virgin Mary’s. Then a characteristic signal trumpet melody…resounds all over the city’s Old Town…Next the same bugle call is played towards the east, the south and the north. Read More

Travels in Budapest

Budapest is a city of statues – there are statues for everyone and everything. The beautiful wide streets, flanked by stunning gothic buildings, have small parks and plazas filled with statues and fountains every couple of blocks. There is no shortage of places to sit down and have a lovely rest. Read More

Travels in Bosnia-Herzegovina

The small old city of Sarajevo where we spent five serene nights, is full of historic buildings with beautiful Georgian architecture, displaying the brutal wounds of gunfire and shelling from two decades prior. Much of the city is graffitied and dirty as post-war economic devastation still remains, and a third of the population are unemployed. The busy streets are a kalediscope of cultures, with nuns, muslims, westerners, arabs, and people from every ethnic and religious background wandering the streets, ordering thick bosnian coffees, decadent icecreams, or the local must-try dish, cevapi. Read More