Change

Change
Turning Over New Leaf

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Count Them on One Hand?

travel


Do I like to vacation? You can say that. I have been very fortunate in my life time to have had the opportunity to travel a great deal because I taught college in Europe. Here are a five of my favorite stops on the European continent, with a few reasons for the great memories:
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Munich, Germany
On our first trip to Germany, we participated in the Munich Carnival. It proved to be a safe, crime free version of Mardi Gras. The Carnival was huge, with thousands of events available to patrons. Our imaginations ran wild. We stayed right in Marienplatz, where everyone dressed in traditional clothing, celebrating five days of food and drink in a friendly, clean atmosphere of happy people who were glad we attended the festival. It is a memory that has brought me back to Germany on every trip across the pond.
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Florence, Italy
Home of my ancestors, Italy has much to offer travelers. I took my wife to a villa in Firenze for New Year’s Eve and it ranked up there with one of the best trips of all time. The entire city is built on art and is one of the most beautiful places in the world to visit. With frescoes on every wall and irresistible food on every corner, Florence is the number one choice for immersion into the Humanities.
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Chipping Campden, England
This ancient town nestled in the Cotswolds is the essence of tranquility. With outstanding architecture and a beautiful countryside, it has imprinted in my mind a vision of England that is a far cry from the hustle and bustle of London.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Prague, Czech Republic
Prague embodies the Bohemian experience. Its castles, historic pubs, taverns, and cellars, Old Town Square, the gypsy market, where the bargaining is an art and the values are spectacular, and gastronomical treasures make this city a must see in one’s lifetime.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Bratislava, Slovakia
This is where Americans are loved. Slovakia was the poorer side of Czechoslovakia behind the Iron Curtin. Once the Velvet Revolution took place and the Cold War ended, Slovakia looked to the West for friendship – and found it. While much of the planet resents American prosperity and arrogance, the capital city of Bratislava treats travelers from the USA like royalty. We stopped for a cup a coffee in a small café on one occasion after walking all day and having no idea where we were. The shop keeper closed her establishment at the busiest time of her day to walk us a mile to the nearest train station, which we never would have found without her assistance. I love this city!
 
Traveling anywhere can be fun, if people use common sense and respect the host culture. Snapping your fingers in a French café will buy you a lot of alone time. When in Rome . . .
 
. . .

10 comments:

  1. Glorious descriptions of perfect vacations,especially useful to tempt new visitors. I totally agree with your descriptions on all points, especially Germany! My mother was born there! I also believe while London has points to see, many experiences one should acquire at least once, but stepping/lodging outside London (and touring the countryside) so much the better. Bath, England a must, and the white cliffs of Dover. I've never been to Bratislava, Slovakia, but perhaps someday.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Karen: Absolutely! I also love London, and Bath is a must see, but I have not been to the White Cliffs of Dover. I'll get there.

      Delete
  2. Love this. You have been so many WONDERFUL places:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Robin: I am very fortunate. Carol and I always find a way to get where we want to go.

      Delete
  3. Oh, how I envy your adventures. They all look like wonderful places to visit.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Miranda: They are wonderful. For me, travel was a great benefit from working at a university, and fortunately, I have a wife who goes along with my crazy adventures.

      Delete
  4. Dear JJ,
    so easy to share your enthusiasm (the only city I do not know is Bratislava). We are glad that our son and lovely daughter-in-law live in Munich (I never can decide which I love more: Munich or Berlin). And Florence and Prague: absolutely d'accord. The funny thing is that I also know Chipping Campden - and around, with the beautiful gardens it depicts the ideal rural England.
    I would not dare to make such a hit-list: so many other towns and cities spring into mind. What about Edinburgh?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Britta: Edinburgh looks fabulous, but I only had a brief stop there in transit. It is definitely on my list.

      Delete
  5. Great post.
    Italy is also the land of my ancestors by the way...
    By mentioning Munich you reminded me that I need to write my post on Kandinsky's art and life. I look forward to it...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi JJ - I've been to 4 of those places at separate times ... Munich in '72, Prague and Brno in 76 or so ... Florence years before ... and Chipping Camden in the Costwolds such a beautiful part of the world .. I didn't get to Bratislava, but I was there before the Iron Curtain came down ... cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.