Tag Archives: world at a glance

World at a Glance: Stoclet House

Stoclet House – or Stoclet Palace – is a secret heritage site. All you’ll see is the back of the building. Through an iron fence. I’m feeling a bit like a stalker, snapping photos through the fence as cars pass by on Brussel’s busy, snazzy Avenue de Tervueren. Now, the back of the building does […]

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World at a Glance: Valencia’s ancient silk exchange, a temple to trade

As you wander through Valencia’s lovely old city, you’ll come across a flamboyantly fascinating building with delicious details: grotesque gargoyles and fantastical figures surrounding the main doors. Be sure to move in close, there’s lots to look at. This is La Lonja de la Seda, the city’s medieval silk exchange. Beginning operations in the early […]

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World at a Glance: Heidelberg’s Student Prison

From its foundation in 1386 and until World War I, Heidelberg University had jurisdiction over unruly students. Depending on your misdemeanour, you could land a sentence of anything from 24 hours to 4 weeks in the Studentenkarzer (student lock-up). The most common offences? … loud singing in the city lanes, inappropriate behaviour in public as […]

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World at a Glance: Defenestration of Prague

‘Defenestration,’ he said, the stranger who came up to me as I leaned out the castle window. Or snuck up on me, rather. Silent as a panther he was. A tuxedo-clad panther, with grey eyes. Steel. Eerily magnetic. View from Prague Castle I must have looked as confused as I felt. ‘An ominous word for […]

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World at a Glance: Tropical Island in a Nazi Hangar

Just 60 km from Berlin, in the state of Brandenburg, is an indoor beach paradise located in one of the world’s largest buildings. On Cat’s school trip to visit concentration camps this summer, we stopped at Tropical Island for a completely different experience. Important to balance the challenging with lighter things, especially with kids. Tropical […]

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World at a Glance: Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls in Iceland

If it weren’t for Snorri Sturluson, we wouldn’t know very much about the Vikings. The famous poet and sagateller was from Reykholt in Western Iceland. Appropriate then, that you’ll find nature steeped in stories near his farm Snorrastofa. Hraunfossar (meaning lava falls) streams out of Hallmundarhraun, a lava field created by a volcanic eruption from […]

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World at a Glance: The Bellinzona castles

In my World Heritage quest, I’ve seen a lot of military architecture lately. Not something I thought I’d be particularly excited about, but I’ve found these sites surprisingly interesting, including the three Bellinzona castles. Quite a few of these engineering feats are now on my wish list (heritage listed or not), such as Beelitz Heilstätten […]

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