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Taormina, Sicily

Taormina, Sicily

Ironic detective stories by Joanna Chmielewska used to be fairly popular in the country of our births when we were young. One of them, Dead Man’s Tale (its Russian-language title translates more literally as “What the Deceased Said”), jumps between various locations in Europe with a short but prominent chapter…

Syracuse, Sicily (WHS #161)

Syracuse, Sicily (WHS #161)

Syracuse is geographically closer to Noto than Catania is, but it enjoys a separate World Heritage recognition as an exceptional record of the development of Mediterranean civilization over three millennia. The WH site is actually a three-part collection that includes the archaeological park of Neapolis over a mile northwest of…

Noto, Sicily (WHS #160 part 1)

Noto, Sicily (WHS #160 part 1)

In the south-eastern part of Sicily, eight towns comprise the World Heritage serial site of Val di Noto, recognized as a great rebuilding achievement in the decades following the devastating earthquake of 1693, which resulted in surpassing examples of Baroque town planning and architecture. It is a varied collection, ranging…

Palermo

Palermo

Quick show of hands – who has Palermo on their must-see-in-your-lifetime list? The capital and largest city of Sicily does not enjoy a highly-recommended status among the travelers (and, like any other place in the South of Italy, is nowhere near the list of most-visited destinations in the country). It…

Back from Italy

Back from Italy

Whoa! Wait a second there!! Nearly two years of barely leaving the confines of our home – and then we had not one but two long-distance trips in quick succession!? One of them crossing international borders!?!? Yep, that is precisely what we did. Just a few weeks after returning from…

High Line, New York

High Line, New York

Having descended from the Edge, I took a stroll along the length of New York’s High Line. The elevated park has been around for nearly a dozen years now, but I had very limited familiarity with it to-date. The walk thus progressed very neatly the theme of my second day…

Views from the Edge

Views from the Edge

On another day of my January staycation (first mentioned in the previous post), my targets in Manhattan included sights in Hudson Yards and Chelsea that I never explored before. Starting with one of the newest attractions in the City – the highest outdoor observation deck in the Western Hemisphere called…

Afternoon in Central Park

Central Park, January

At the end of last month, I took a week off work, for reasons none other than I would lose a perfectly useable vacation week if I haven’t done so. It was my first staycation in recorded memory, a type of holiday that has never held a lot of appeal…