Menu Close

Category: World in Pictures

Washington, DC

Washington, DC

Spontaneity has not been much of a feature of my traveling exploits lately, but the Christmastime trip to Washington had a bit of spontaneity in it. It was originally conceived as an opportunity for moms to do things with kids, and my participation in that was vague at best. Just…

Italy wrap-up

Italy wrap-up

Our November trip to Italy was relatively short, befitting a getaway, and structured around visiting a few places that we had not explored in the past. We spent time in Milan (city highlights, Last Supper), Bergamo (city highlights, fortifications), and Turin (city highlights, royal palaces). My photographic output was not…

Turin

Turin

My writing skills being what they are, I frequently struggle with finding original or at least not overused ways to express my positive impressions of places and points of interest. But that is nothing compared to the search for ways to describe a lukewarm impression. The places that do not…

Bergamo

Bergamo

We have not set foot in Bergamo in the past and made it a defined target on this trip. It is a kind of town that invariably leaves a positive impression on any visitor without tipping the scales on the exceptional side. Città Alta, the historic core of Bergamo, is…

Third time the charm in Milan

Third time the charm in Milan

Milan, a renowned Mecca of shopping and fashion, is rarely considered to be a sightseeing destination. That reputation is largely deserved, as even the most ardently patriotic locals are likely to agree that their city is not at all pretty. Impressive buildings pop up here or there, some residential streets…

Greece wrap-up

Greece wrap-up

I have now come to the end of my photographic material from the summertime trip to Greece. Over the course of a dozen and a half essays, we revisited places on Crete (Minoan sites, Heraklion, Psychro cave, other locations, not forgetting the unbelievable sunrise), on Santorini (Oia, including sunset, and…

Chasing World Heritage: #116 (Mycenae)

Chasing World Heritage: #116 (Mycenae)

The last ruins that we visited in Greece was Mycenae, the center of the Late Bronze Age civilization that was the main precursor to the classical Ancient Greek culture. Mycenaeans’ period of domination over the Mediterranean came around the time when the Minoan civilization – which we encountered on Crete…

Chasing World Heritage: #115 (Delphi)

Chasing World Heritage: #115 (Delphi)

Delphi was the sacred center of the world for the Ancient Greeks and undoubtedly a remarkable achievement of purposeful architecture, a sanctuary built into the challenging landscape to inspire awe and worship. Unfortunately, very little is left of its former glory, and the visual impact is fairly muted. After experiencing…

Chasing World Heritage: #113 (Acropolis)

Chasing World Heritage: #113 (Acropolis)

I always find myself awed by grandiose edifices. Beholding the Parthenon up close, unfailingly grandiose despite its ruined state blended with a construction site, made the visit to Acropolis instantly worthwhile. Built in the 5th century BC to honor goddess Athena, the patron of the city, the temple survived rise…

Athens

Athens

Common wisdom holds Athens as a single-day destination, with one must-see sight and little else beyond that which is exceptional. Its abundance of ancient ruins may allow a true connoisseur to stretch the stay to a couple of days, but we are far from such connoisseurs. We made Athens the…

Sailing around Naxos

Sailing around Naxos

It may sound unexpected coming from yours truly, but if there was a day that stood out on our two-weeks-plus-long trip to Greece, it was in a sense the laziest day on the itinerary. For the last full day of our stay on Naxos, we penciled in a day-long boating…

Mykonos

Mykonos

The second part of our day cruise that first took us to Delos was Mykonos. A renowned “party island”, it may have been completely ignored by us if not for the fixed itinerary of the cruise. We were given about three hours to explore its eponymous Chora, which was barely…

Chasing World Heritage: #112 (Delos)

Chasing World Heritage: #112 (Delos)

For all of the obvious associations between Greece and the ancient cultures, it has a surprisingly modest number of recognized World Heritage sites: 18 properties spread across 37 individual locations. There are none on either Crete, Santorini, or Naxos, so my first chance to improve my visited count came well…

On Naxos

On Naxos

Our time on Naxos was structured as a sequence of day-long excursions. One of those was a chauffeured private tour around the island, with stops at several points of interest. Naxos is the largest island of the Cyclades archipelago and is relatively sparsely populated (the number of permanent residents here…

Naxos, Chora

Naxos, Chora

If we fell in love with one place in Greece, it was Naxos. Although it is not exactly unknown, it does not attract as many visitors as some other Aegean islands. That is partially due to its relative un-flashiness and in large part due to the fact that it does…

On Santorini

On Santorini

The village of Oia enjoys incontestable top billing among Santorini sights – to the point that some travel publications caption a photograph of Oia as simply “Santorini” – but we took time to explore other parts of the island. Our intent to take a closer look at the main town…