That collection of countries and cultures which has (thus far) had the most impact on world history is still its single most popular travel destination. Here we explore the legendary wealth and experiences to be had across the "Old World."

So welcome to Albania, Andorra, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic/Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy/San Marino/Vatican City, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania,  Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey/Türkiye, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom!

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Our winter adventure above Norway´s Arctic Circle

  Nearly 20 years ago, I visited Norge for the first time – on a press trip sponsored by Visit Norway to capital Oslo, historic second city Bergen, and a Hurtigruten cruise to the fjords and up to far-northern Svalbard. It was all beautiful, of course, but it was in summertime, and over this past Christmas and New Year´s I had to privilege of coming back in winter. Naturally, it was a whole different – and a chilling yet in many ways even more enchanting – experience. read post  

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Capitals, sastles, and more on a Danube River cruise

  Grand Circle Travel “Now we’re heading toward Dürnstein, one of the loveliest towns in Austria,” the voice over loudspeaker of the M/V Adagio intoned. “Its buildings represent a number of architectural styles and so many artists have gathered at one spot to portray the magnificent surrounding landscape that it became known as the Painters’ Corner.” The fact is, though, that on the way to Dürnstein we sailed past lovely town after lovely town. As the vessel continued its journey on the…

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5 of Spain´s special New Year´s traditions

  jacinta lluch valero We Spaniards love to ring out the old and ring in the new as much as anyone else on the planet. And whilst we of course share many NYE practices with the rest of the world (at least the Western world, I guess), there are several which are fairly unique to our country – and here´s a quirky quintet of them: read post  

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Europe in ´A Quirky Christmas to All! 10 of the World´s Weirdest Yuletide Traditions´

  MatthiasKabel All across the world, all sorts of holiday activities– both religious and secular, age-old and relatively new – are in full swing during this season, including festive lights, special street markets, trees, Santa and elves everywhere, and the rest of it.  But a handful of places feature oddities which range from whimsical to scary to occasionally potentially offensive. Here´s a particularly memorable top ten: read post  

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  • Euronews recently came out with a look at several of Europe´s best ¨under-the-radar¨ beaches - and as you might be able to guess, most (though not all) are in the East: https://www.euronews.com/travel/2023/04/07/albania-bulgaria-romania...
    Budget beach breaks: Skip tourist hotspots for Europe’s hidden gems
    From Albania to Ireland, these are Europe’s best under the radar beach destinations.
  • I guess maybe it's not my imagination that I'm already seeing loads more foreigners in central Madrid thse days: https://www.cnn.com/travel/europe-crazy-tourism-summer/index.html
    https://www.cnn.com/travel/europe-crazy-tourism-summer/index.html
  • Street art is a cool addition to the urban vibe in many cities, and Time Out just took a look at several of Europe's best cities and neighborhoods to it: https://www.timeout.com/news/revealed-europes-best-cities-for-stree...
    Revealed: Europe’s best cities for street art
    Banksy, eat yer heart out.
  • The Med is always an awesome place to visit not just for its alluring attractions but also for nice temps when it's colder farther north, so I was interested to catch TravelNoire.com's pitch for Cyprus as a great winter trip: https://travelnoire.com/10-reasons-why-cyprus-is-a-sweet-winter-get...
  • The annual "World Happiness Report" compiled by various international groups using Gallup polling recently came out for 2022, and European countries as usual occupied most of the top slots, including the top three, all in Scandinavia: Finland, Denmark, and Iceland (whereas my own country Spain was way down at 29, hmmm): https://worldhappiness.report/ed/2022/happiness-benevolence-and-tru...
    Happiness, Benevolence, and Trust During COVID-19 and Beyond
    The World Happiness Report is a publication of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, powered by the Gallup World Poll data.
  • Having greatly enjoyed my first visit to Leipzig several years ago, I found this insider's guide from The Guardian interesting indeed: https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2022/aug/01/a-locals-guide-to-le...
    A local’s guide to Leipzig: dumplings, diversity and delightful G&Ts | Leipzig holidays | The Guard…
    With glorious boat trips on its canals and sumptuous food, from traditional Saxon to Vietnamese, this is a destination ripe for a city break, says re…
  • An interesting recent BBC Travel piece on Sweden as a "new frontier" for sustainable wine, on Gotland Island, above the Arctic Circle: https://www.bbc.com/travel/article/20220831-the-arctic-circle-a-new...
    The Arctic Circle: A new frontier for sustainable wine
    Once seen as experimental and at the fringe of what's possible, a commercial wine industry in regions just below the Arctic circle is taking advantag…
  • Recently The Guardian ran a piece on its readers favorite European cities for street art. Some won't surprise you but others likely will! https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2022/aug/11/street-art-in-europe...
    ‘Brilliant and ever-changing’: readers’ favourite street art in Europe | Street art | The Guardian
    From Penge to Sardinia, exuberant street art makes neighbourhoods more vibrant and casts light on local history and culture – or just gives you a lau…
  • Each year my home country celebrates an annually designated "capital of culture," and this year the honour has fallen to the small island of Procida (population around 10,000), located in Campania a short ferry ride from Naples along with Capri and Ischia (if you've ever seen the charming 1994 film "Il Postino", it was shot here, as were scenes for "The Talented Mr. Ripley" starring Matt Damon). Why did this quiet little island beat out Ancona, Bari, Cerveteri, Lake Maggiore, L’Aquila, Pieve di Soligo (Treviso), Taranto, Trapani, Verbania, and Volterra? Check out its tourism site https://www.visitprocida.com/en/ as well as this travel video from a couple of years ago that showcases Procida: https://youtu.be/blmz1H7BYz4
    Discover Procida: The Italian capital of culture 2022
    Discover Procida: book accommodation, transfer and tours for your holiday in the island of Procida, the Italian Capital of Culture 2022
  • It's prime surfing season in Europe as well as elsewhere in the Northern Hemisphere, and here are StarInsider.com's top waveriding picks on the continent this summer: https://www.starsinsider.com/travel/386118/where-to-surf-in-europe-...
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