Tag Archives: daytrip
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Yet another day out Beirut: Byblos, the world’s oldest city?

Is ancient Byblos the world’s oldest continually inhabited city? Others make the same claim: Damascus and Aleppo in neighbouring Syria, Jericho in Palestine, also in the general vicinity. Byblos was founded 7 000 years ago. Some say 9 000, some say 10 800. Either way, people have lived and loved here for a long time. […]

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Day out Beirut: Tyre

I’m in Southern Lebanon today; joined by 6 Brits and an American couple (the woman went to university in Beirut in 1964!) and our cheerful guide Pierre, all wanting to have a look at the Roman ruins in Tyre. Or Ksour, the city’s present-day Arabic name. We’ve driven 82 km south from Beirut, a picturesque coastal drive. […]

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Day out Tbilisi: Ananuri Castle and Kazbegi Mountains

Along the Georgian Military Highway If you’re following this blog – and reading this, chances are you’re interested in the world’s slightly more obscure places. You might for example have visited Georgia, or perhaps you’re considering it for your next Euro/Asian jaunt. (Is the Caucasus in Europe or in Asia? The answer isn’t clear cut). […]

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Gori: birthplace of the world’s most infamous dictator

Looks innocent enough, doesn’t he, young Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili? What could this rather dashing 20-something possibly have on his conscience? At the time of this portrait, probably not much else than the odd bank robbery. Give him a few years, however… Earlier, I mentioned visiting the home country of the world’s most infamous dictator. It took […]

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Day out Alicante: El Palmeral de Elche

So – you’re in the busy Costa Blanca, lounging on its lovely beaches. But for a bit of variety, you might be looking for something a little different to do. Perhaps away from the hustle and bustle? If so, may I recommend tranquility among palm trees? That’s what you find at El Palmeral de Elche, […]

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Day out Bordeaux: Vauban’s military trilogy

Once an orphan living in poverty, later an engineering genius with a prestigious career. A familiar story, perhaps. Yet that doesn’t diminish its power to inspire. That is also the story of Sébastien Le Prestre de Vauban: military engineer, advisor to Roi Soleil Louis XIV, France’s most famous king, and most importantly for this little piece, […]

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Day out Gdansk: The Malbork Murder

If you happen to be floating down the tranquil river Wisla, head off at the little branch called the Nogat, and you’ll come to a Gothic fairytale fortress and some intriguing Malbork Castle history, murder included! Disembark on the opposite bank, and this imposing 13th century fortified monastery is all you’ll see. The view is […]

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