Discover the age-old continent through these Europe travel stories, its curious, unsung places as well as its more familiar spots.
You may notice a few countries that may not traditionally be considered European. Europe’s borders are never easy to define. So I’ve decided to go by the old definition I learned in school: In the east, Europe ends at the Ural Mountains. That means the Caucasian countries – Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia – are part of Europe, according to Sophie’s World. This is probably also according to the countries themselves: all three are members of the Council of Europe and cooperate with the European Union with a view to future membership. Also, all three countries participate in the Eurovision Song Contest; can’t argue with that.
Latest Europe travel stories
Aosta Valley on Sophie's World We have covered quite a bit of the Aosta Valley here on the blog in recent weeks. In part I, we talked about Mont Blanc and the ultra-cool Skyway Monte Bianco, as well as the awesomest way to travel between Italy and France, 4 km up in the air. Part II was all [...]
The enigmatic cryptoporticus Buon giorno, good people! I’m back with what has turned out to be not-quite-the-final instalment from the Aosta Valley, Italy’s biggest secret. Now, if you remember, the last episode had quite a bit of hiking in it. But not everyone is into all that physical exertion. Perhaps your partner or travel mates are massively into sports and [...]
The Balkans have been a popular holiday destination this summer. And people are branching out. Not only Croatia anymore, but Montenegro, too. And Albania. We branched out to Montenegro and Albania, as well. And to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia and Serbia. Our journey in 52 stories We have 2 weeks and a bit. Ambitious, but we can do [...]
When I was in school, Albania was a mysterious country, run by the enigmatic Enver Hoxha. It was solidly behind the Iron Curtain, yet neither part of the Soviet Union nor Yugoslavia, and isolated from the rest of the world, a bit like North Korea today. We learnt that religion was forbidden. And if you wanted to visit Albania and [...]
What do you think of when you hear Sarajevo? Depends on how long you’ve been around here on Earth, perhaps. I remember the Sarajevo Winter Olympics in 1984, the first Winter Games held in a socialist country. That could be because I hail from Norway, where Winter Olympics far outweighs summer ones in importance. Mostly though, I think of Sarajevo [...]
High in the Alps, way up in the north-western corner of Italy, you will find a secret. A stunning valley, home to some of the most famous mountains on earth. You will have heard of Mont Blanc and Matterhorn, of course. But have you heard of Monte Bianco? How about Monte Cervino? Same two mountains, just the other side of [...]
Remember I talked about 11 things you'll love in Belgrade? (17 things, it turned out. But, erm... who's counting.) I mentioned 3 days was not enough to see and do all the things I wanted to in the Serbian capital, so next time... Well, next time recently came around. On a road trip through 7 Balkan countries earlier this month [...]
Together we are strong 11 years ago today, on a quiet Friday afternoon, a right-wing terrorist dressed in police uniform, set off a 950-kg car bomb in Oslo's government quarter, murdering 8 people. His next target was Utøya Island, where the Labour Party's youth organisation held their annual summer camp, as they have done for more than 50 years. He [...]
We arrive in Belgrade late at night, a bit weary from 11 hours on a train. The Bar to Belgrade train takes you through lovely landscapes: first the deep canyons of Montenegro, then the gentle green hills of Serbia. Still... 11 hours! But more about the famous train journey later. Today, it's all about Mama Shelter Belgrade. A taxi is [...]
Are you familiar with the Aosta Valley? Like Le Marche, Aosta is amongst Italy’s lesser-known regions, known only to the most avid Italophiles; a hidden jewel. I'm just back from this secret and oh-so-beautiful corner of Italia la bella, up in the north-westernmost corner of the country, just next door to France and Switzerland. I will share all kinds of [...]
Today, we're in the smallest country in the world. Or not today, exactly. Not in body, at least. But in mind. World's smallest country. That is the little. And the big? The Vatican is HQ of a religion that has wielded a massive influence through nearly 2,000 years, on the lives of very many people in the world - 1.3 [...]
My first visit to Brussels was just after uni. I was not overly taken with the city that first time; in fact, I remember thinking (and writing on post cards) that the best thing about Brussels was how easy it was to get to so many other interesting places in just a few hours: Paris, Amsterdam, London – all within [...]