Articles

A city alive with history

Quebec is one of the safest cities on the world, especially for women, my new friend tells me.

That’s lucky, I think, because I’ve just jumped into his car and we’re driving up into deserted forests. If I disappear, nobody will ever know why.

All such thoughts vanish as my impromptu tour guide Philippe Guerriere starts telling me about the battles that raged in Quebec between French and English soldiers, leaving a stunning legacy of …

There’s More to Las Vegas than Casinos…

Casinos?

Ca’seen them.

Yes, the megalith casinos keep getting bigger and bigger and they will likely always be the top draw for Vegas visitors. But when you are suffering from casino fatigue, and can’t take even one minute more of the atmosphere of smoke, sweat and desperation, take a look inside any of three museums that cry out “Vegas” but have nothing – okay, let’s say little – to do with casinos.

 

The Mob

George Washington’s Mount Vernon

There they are, on full display in front of you: George Washington’s legendary false teeth, looking more like Johnny Rotten’s. The uppers aren’t that worse for wear, but the lowers have gaps that one could drive a truck through. But they are not made of wood as many believe. The first president’s choppers were crafted from the combination of elephant ivory, human teeth, and cow teeth.

Despite the shoddy state of the stained dentures, Washington …

A Pilgrimage to Bob Dylan’s Minnesota

How does it feel?

A little breezy, actually. Standing on a modest hilltop overlooking the Hull-Rust open pit iron mine, where Bob Dylan, then Bob Zimmerman, used to ride his bicycle with his friends, it is easy to see how his youth in Hibbing, Minnesota influenced Dylan’s work. This endless iron mine pit is the largest in the world. Locals refer to it as the man-made Grand Canyon.

When it was determined about a century …

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Falling Water

A shaded forest with dappled sunlight dancing between the trees; a clear stream that cascades over a severe, silver rock face; a certain hush, save the occasional bird and the crunching of leaves underfoot, and there, in the middle of it, a house like a no other, rising from a waterfall.

There’s a reason why Frank Lloyd Wright remains one of America’s most beloved architects. Falling Water, the stunning summer home that Wright designed for …

20 Years After Terror Attack, Oklahoma City Museum Undergoes Expansion

A lot has happened since the pictures of devastation from the usually quiet municipality of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA made headlines 20 years ago. Heart-wrenching images of a bombed office building and broken bodies, the kind we are used to seeing from the Middle East and not the American Midwest, were on television screens and in newspapers in parts of the world that never knew Oklahoma City existed. The date was April 19, 1995. The …

24 Hours in Budapest

Budapest is one of the largest and most well-known cities on the Danube River in Hungary. It’s a town of many faces as it’s actually divided between “Buda” and “Pest.” You could easily fill a week in this city, but if you’re short on time, make sure you hit the highlights. You’ll quickly find out how this city played a big part in World War II and has come to be known as the “Jewel …

Bolshy Barcelona

Thirteen minutes. That’s all it took from arriving in Barcelona to encounter one of its greatest claims to fame – the slickest pickpockets in Europe.

If you’re going to hit, best get hit by a professional, I always say. And they’re at their slickest and quickest on the underground trains at Barcelona Sants railway station. Barcelona treats its notoriety as a pickpocketer’s playground with a zesty inverted snobbery, with the landlord of the apartment I …

Highlights of Bridgetown, Barbados

Located in the Caribbean, Barbados appeals to visitors who simply want to kick back and enjoy the sun, sea, and surf. With its aqua blue sea and powdery beaches, you are never too far away from a place to sit and relax. But when you feel like doing some exploring, Bridgetown (Barbados’ capital city) is the place to head to. It’s easy to get to from just about anywhere, no matter where you are in …

5 Reasons to Head to South Dakota on Your Next Family Vacation

South Dakota often gets overlooked when it comes to planning a family vacation. This Midwest state is actually an ideal place to explore history and have fun, regardless of your age. Between Mount Rushmore, The Badlands, Rapid City, Crazy Horse, and Custer State Park, it will turn into the trip of a lifetime.

1. Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore is perhaps one of the most amazing sites your family will see on vacation. Three million people …

Belgium: Flanders Battlefields

Wanting to explore Flanders’ WW1 poppy fields and old battlegrounds? I tapped in the GPS coordinates for Dover – just a stone throw from London only 82 miles away. In Dover I took a ferry which deposited me across the English Channel in France’s Calais 90 minutes later. I planned to explore the territories where The Great War had been fought and to see the appalling conditions in which the soldiers lived and the immaculate …

5 Chocolate Lover’s Destinations

Nothing says love more than chocolate – well, at least for most people. Why not plan a getaway to a destination known for chocolate? Go to a far flung part of the world where the heavenly creation of sweetened food made from cocoa beans excites your taste buds. What could be better than combining your love for travel with your love for chocolate?

Belgium

In the European Kingdom of Belgium, surrounded by the Netherlands, Germany …

Mandela’s Country

The death of Nelson Mandela is focusing world attention on South Africa as never before. His departure at the age of 95 is uniting the country again, just as he pulled the fragmented society together in 1995, when he wore a Springbok’s jersey to the Rugby World Cup, the country’s first major sporting event since the end of Apartheid.

I have always felt privileged to be part of Mandela’s land, a country where one astonishing …

Touring Haydn’s Graceland in Austria

Tourists planning to visit Vienna might want to consider renting a car and taking a day trip to Eisenstadt. This town located in Austria’s Burgenland province, the easternmost region of Austria, is situated about 40 kilometers ( 25 miles) from Vienna. Here one finds the home of classical composer Joseph Haydn who lived in this town for over 40 years in his capacity as Prince Esterhazy’s Kapellmeister (music director). While this destination is not as …