Technically, the Continent of Europe is the area west of the Ural Mountains, East of the Atlantic, and North of the Medeteranian. It includes several distinct geographic regions including the British Isles, the Iberian Peninsula, Scandenavia, the Balkan Peninsula, and extends as far east as the Caucuses.

My road crisscrossed Europe several times during my childhood, but as I find myself drawn to roads-less traveled, most of the articles on this site deal with the region of the Balkans, and Southeastern Europe.

Rathaus Christkindle Market in Vienna

Austrian Advent: Glühwein, and Christmas Markets

An Austrian Advent Glühwein and Christmas Markets Christkindle (Christ Child) Markets, Advent Markets, and Weinachtsen (Christmas) Markets, have a long history in Germanic countries.  The tradition of a market around Advent originated in Germany in the late middle ages. The Austrian incarnation of the Christmas market didn’t take root until well into the 17th century. Examples of earlier precursors – (December markets and such) exist, but there is little evidence of a proper market organized around the[…]

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Some of the scenery along the way on the train from Milan to Zurich

The Train from Milan to Zurich

The Train from Milan to Zurich   Getting Started “We can sell your ticket here, but for the dog you must buy on the train.” “Ok,” I replied. I vaguely remembered some complication with dog travel when crossing this particular border, so I wasn’t worried. Mostly I was just excited about the direct train from Milan to zurich through the mountains of northern Italy and Switzerland. There are more scenic ways to travel this route.[…]

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Sechselautenplatz in front of the Zurich Opera House

Switzerland: Impressions of Zurich

Impressions of Zurich   I arrived at the station after spending nearly six hours on what was billed as a four hour trip. My train broke down at the Italy-Switzerland border and we had to take two local trains to get to Zurich. I checked the map on my phone and realized in an instant that the train station isn’t where I thought it was, and that the hotel I booked thinking it was just[…]

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The Gothic Facade of Duomo di Milan

Italy: Love and Loathing in Milan

Love and Loathing in Milan The Importance of Good Impressions… I dragged my dog’s (Bonnie) travel box – tied onto a wheeled duffel bag with a web of red rope across the train platform in Milan dodging running train passengers and lumbering luggage carts. Milan is our last stop in Italy before heading north to Frankfurt for our flight back to the US. I navigated my cumbersome luggage nimbly through the crowd that filled Milan’s[…]

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Ancona, Italy

Italy: Up the Adriatic Coast – An Afternoon in Ancona

Up the Adriatic Coast Part II: An Afternoon in Ancona     The brown, brick buildings of Ancona’s old town sweep up the bluff like a wave surging at the sandy shores. From a distance, the city looks like a jumble of blocks punctuated by the domes and towers of the town’s churches. Once inside, the picture changes and the jumble of blocks becomes a succession of stately constructions that climb the hill on stone-cobbled[…]

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The train from Foggia to Ancona, Italy

Italy: Up the Adriatic Coast

Up Italy’s Adriatic Coast   Last fall, my mother and I took a bus trip down the Eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea covering the whole eastern shoreline – or as much of it as the road would allow from Slovenia to Albania (for more about that trip, read my “Down the Eastern Adriatic” series of posts). I’ve always wanted to do same thing with the Italy’s Adriatic coast. I wanted to begin in Lecce,[…]

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The elegant interior betrays the cafe's popularity

Ca’puccino, Milan

Sometimes-Sunday Coffee Club (Milan) Saturday, 27 June 27, 2015 Ca’puccino, Milan (Viale Piave and Via Marcello Malphighi)   Ca’puccino   Just across from Porta Venezia, at the intersection of Viale Piave and Via Marcello Malphighi, an elegant little restaurant-cafe watches the bustle of Milan’s streets through place glass windows: Ca’puccino.   I find Ca’puccino quite by accident on my way to a panini place just up the street. When I see the interior decorated with[…]

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