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Category: World in Pictures

A briefest of Dallas impressions

A briefest of Dallas impressions

In between my fabulous foreign adventures, I occasionally travel for business. In that rare happenstance, especially when I find myself in a place completely new to me, I try to carve out a bit of time to explore. Right before Porto, my destination for a good portion of a work…

Portraits of wines

Portraits of wine

Although my statement made elsewhere that Porto does not boast must-see museums is correct in the literal sense, it could be argued that the World of Wine complex in Vila Nova de Gaia is entirely worth checking out. Opened in the midst of the pandemic in 2020, the commercial-and-entertainment complex…

Around Porto (cont.)

Around Porto (cont.)

The second set of pictures from my February visit to Porto covers a number of key sights in the historic center of town, most of which are named in the WH inscription. You will probably find a bit of overlap between these pictures and the ones found in my first…

Around Porto

Around Porto

I frequently end my retrospectives of travel visits with a variation of “didn’t do it justice, need to come back”. There may be a dozen major destinations in Europe that I can claim great familiarity with, but most of the places are usually given a relatively brief look-over. Who is…

On Belizean roads

On Belizean roads

Just as in Costa Rica last year, we did not drive ourselves in Belize, instead taking advantage of the private transfer options offered by the resorts we were staying at. That decision saved us a lot of aggravation with the uneven quality, shall we say, of the Belizean roads, major…

Belize Reef Islands (and WHS #171)

Belize Reef Islands (and WHS #170)

One of the gorgeous days while in Hopkins, we went on an “island hopping” expedition to visit several cayes that are strung along the Belize Barrier Reef. Some of these tiny islands are nothing but greenery atop sandy banks, while others are built up with resorts and even have small…

Hopkins, Belize

Hopkins, Belize

For the second portion of our stay in Belize in December, we were based in the seaside town of Hopkins. Now, I believe I have sufficiently established throughout all of my travels that I am not much of a beach person. As much as I like dipping in the sea…

Chasing World Heritage: #170 (Tikal)

Chasing World Heritage: #169 (Tikal)

Tikal is one of the most important monuments left behind by the Mayan civilization. The history of the huge – in the context of times – city spans over fifteen centuries, reaching its apex between 200 and 900 CE before rapidly declining at the beginning of the 10th century. It…

Xunantunich Mayan Site, Belize

Xunantunich Mayan Site, Belize

Abandoned cities of the Mayan Empire dot the landscape across Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Belize. Some are quite famous (think Chichen Itza, which I visited over a decade ago, or Tikal, which will be the subject of an upcoming post). Others are much less known. Xunantunich, practically on…

San Ignacio, Belize

San Ignacio, Belize

Our trip to Belize at the end of the last year was split between two locations, one inland and one on the coast. The inland one was near the town of San Ignacio in the western Belize district of Cayo. This was a great base for visiting Mayan ruins, swimming…

Cruising on the Bosporus

Cruising on the Bosphorus

On my last evening in Istanbul, I went for a sunset cruise on the Bosphorus. Most of my photography is done in a walkabout way, so I wanted an opportunity to remain seated while still enjoying eye-catching perspectives. There are plenty of options for such a cruise on offer in…

Chasing World Heritage: #169, part 1 (Bursa)

Chasing World Heritage: #168, part 1 (Bursa)

Before the Ottomans captured Constantinople in 1453 and made the newly renamed Istanbul their capital, the seat of the Ottoman Empire for over a century was in Bursa, where a succession of sultans developed the city around several commercial and religious focal points. Here is the perspective from my hotel…

Iznik, Turkey

Íznik, Türkiye

I doubt that any of my readers have heard of Íznik before, let alone included it on their real or potential itineraries around Türkiye. When people think about Turkish destinations beyond Istanbul, what comes to mind is Cappadocia, the Turquoise Coast, or maybe Safranbolu or Pamukkale. Hardly ever anything in…

Istanbul: Briefly on the Asian side

Istanbul: Briefly on the Asian side

When you cross Bosporus to go to the Anatolian part of Istanbul, you leave behind most of the tourist crowds and most of the city’s iconic sights. This side is primarily the living quarters of ordinary residents, quieter and of significantly lower profile than the European side. A few defined…

Istanbul: Beyoğlu and Beşiktaş

Istanbul: Beyoğlu and Beşiktaş

When in Istanbul last October, I stayed in Beyoğlu. Historically known as Pera (which means “beyond” in Greek), this was a predominantly Christian area surrounding the coastal town of Galata that faced Constantinople across the Golden Horn. It has become the entertainment and nightlife focal point of Istanbul in modern…

Instanbul: More from Fatih

Instanbul: Fatih beyond Sultanahmet

The Golden Horn – the estuary of the Bosporus – divides the European side of Istanbul into what is historically known as “the old city” and “the new city”. The former is officially called “Fatih” and extends beyond the Sultanahmet area that we explored before. This set looks at a…

Istanbul: Sultanahmet, Topkapi, Cistern

Istanbul: Sultanahmet, Topkapi, Cistern

As my very first – and very short – trip to Istanbul perfectly illustrated, you can claim reasonable familiarity with the main sights of Istanbul by spending just a few hours in or around the Sultanahmet area. There is a high concentration of prime points of interest in Sultanahmet, which…

A few more from Sardinia

A few coastal pictures from Sardinia

Coastlines and beaches are Sardinia’s most impressive features. We explored the western coast fairly extensively, going to different beaches, taking scenic drives, and also spending large parts of two separate days on boating expeditions. The first of those took us along the coast between Bosa and Alghero, the subregion known…