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a beautiful Costa Blanca view

Driving Costa Blanca: Some Advice

If you’re ever in the Costa Blanca in Spain, here’s what I’d recommend: get away from the coast! Yes, you can enjoy the beaches and party till the wee hours in the coastal towns, but there’s far more to see inland. The drive I did the other day, for example, was absolutely lovely. Leaving from…

a few bottles from the collection of antique medicines containing cannabis and other drugs

Hash, Marijuana & Hemp Museum Amsterdam

It’s not surprising that Amsterdam is home to a museum of Hash, Marijuana and Hemp, given its generally tolerant policy toward soft drugs. You’d think, given the somewhat subversive subject, that it would be entertaining to visit. It wasn’t. Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. If you click on one and make a purchase, I…

The Museum of Bags and Purses Amsterdam

Added in May 2021: I just found out that this museum closed in April 2020, at the beginning of the pandemic. I’ll leave the review here as it is, in case anyone is interested in what it was like. For the sake of full transparency and before I describe my impressions of Tassenmuseum Hendrikje, the…

a plastinate

Body Worlds Amsterdam: Museum or freak show?

Warning: If you’re squeamish, you might want to click away…but please share this post before you go! Body Worlds: The Happiness Project exhibit in Amsterdam is described on its webpage like this: “More than 200 anatomical specimens of real human bodies show the complexity, resilience and vulnerability of the body.” In other words, at Body Worlds…

close-up of a dragon figure edging the bars over a window in Barcelona

Gothic Barcelona: A Walking Tour with a Difference

As you know, I attended the TBEX travel bloggers’ conference in Lloret del Mar recently. While I was there, I was fortunate to be able to take a walking tour of Gothic Barcelona offered by Context Travel. They operate walking tours in more than 36 cities, “the world’s cultural capitals,” around the world. Context Travel’s unique selling…

throne chair on a dais with a cloth draped above it in the Gala Dali museum

Gala Dali Castle: Dalí’s Gift to his Muse

If you like Salvador Dalí’s art—even if you’re not such a fan of his work—the Gala Dali Castle in Púbol, Spain, is something you should not miss. This is not a Dalí museum. Dalí bought the building, a medieval castle, as a gift for his wife and muse, Elena Ivanovna Diakonova, who was called simply Gala….

view of Lloret de Mar with a row of apartments and hotels on the beach

5 Reasons to Visit Lloret de Mar

(Nederlands versie beneden!) When I told people I was going to Lloret de Mar for the last week of my one-month solo trip (Guadeloupe, Martinique, New York, Lloret de Mar), the usual reaction was something along the line of “Lloret de Mar? But why?” Lloret de Mar has a reputation as a party city, along…

view of Groningen train station, with the Starbucks in the left wing

The most beautiful Starbucks?

You know how sometimes you get so used to what you see every day that you stop noticing it? I’ve walked by the Starbucks in the Groningen central train station hundreds of times in the course of commuting to and from my job up in Leeuwarden. I just didn’t pay much attention to it until…

view of Hooge der A with ships

Groningen walking tour

Groningen is the perfect place for an off-the-beaten-track weekend escape. Home to a world-class university, its young population makes it dynamic and hip, yet its small size keeps it friendly and relaxed. This walking tour could last from two hours, if you just stroll, to all day, if you take your time and stop to see…