Travel

El Salvador: Image Vs. Reality

Filed in Travel by on May 8, 2019 0 Comments
El Salvador: Image Vs. Reality

Fed up with Toronto’s bitterly cold winter this year, I was more than ready for a warm-weather vacation down south. Nicaragua beckoned, but I passed because it was torn by political instability yet again.  Having already been to Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica and Panama, I pivoted toward El Salvador, the smallest, most densely populated and […]

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Lugano: A Swiss Mediterranean Enclave

Filed in Travel by on April 19, 2019 0 Comments
Lugano: A Swiss Mediterranean Enclave

Lugano is an anomaly — a Mediterranean enclave inside nordic Switzerland. In this enchanting corner of the country, known as Ticino, a visitor can often count on sunny weather and expect to see palm trees, semi-tropical vegetation and the pastel hues of southern Europe. Predominantly Italian in ambience, this pleasant city is set on the […]

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Colmar — the Venice Of France

Filed in Travel by on March 8, 2019 0 Comments
Colmar — the Venice Of France

Laced with a maze of canals, the French city of Colmar might be mistaken for Venice. Yet Colmar is unmistakably Gallic, although many of its historic buildings are inspired by Germanic architecture. Esthetically impressive, old Colmar is a living museum of exquisite half-timbered medieval and early Renaissance houses hugging narrow cobblestone byways. The third largest […]

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A Blindingly White World Of Ice And Snow

Filed in Travel by on January 13, 2019 0 Comments
A Blindingly White World Of Ice And Snow

It’s the highest mountain peak in Switzerland accessible by train. At 3,454 metres above sea level, Jungfraujoch, commonly referred to as the Top of Europe, towers majestically over the alpine village of Grindelwald in the Bernese Alps. Peaks of this dizzying height normally can only be reached by expert climbers. But Jungfraujoch can be accessed by anyone […]

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Strasbourg — The Cosmopolitan Capital Of Alsace

Filed in Travel by on December 31, 2018 0 Comments
Strasbourg — The Cosmopolitan Capital Of Alsace

Few cities in France have been roiled by as much upheaval. Strasbourg, the cosmopolitan capital of Alsace, has always been in the eye of a storm. Founded by the Romans as a military camp, it was a free imperial city during the Holy Roman Empire. Ceded to France in 1681, it fell into Germany’s hands during […]

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Alsace’s Delightful Wine Route

Filed in Travel by on November 24, 2018 0 Comments
Alsace’s Delightful Wine Route

I’m not much of a wine drinker, but I jumped at the opportunity of visiting the fabled Wine Route in the Alsace district of France. Winding past immaculate wineyards and quaint villages and towns beautified by bright potted flowers in windowsills, the route traverses the eastern side of the Vosges mountain range. Fine wines have […]

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A Dictator’s Hunting Lodge In Romania

Filed in Travel by on October 22, 2018 0 Comments
A Dictator’s Hunting Lodge In Romania

I remember that deliciously surreal moment with piercing clarity — the day I walked into Nicolae Ceausescu’s former bedroom and, on a whim, bounced up and down on the late Romanian dictator’s bed. It might have been the firing squad for me had I been caught doing that before his ignominious downfall and execution in […]

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Cycling On The Toronto Islands

Filed in Travel by on August 29, 2018 0 Comments
Cycling On The Toronto Islands

  Toronto Island Park is so near, yet so far from the hustle and bustle of Canada’s largest city. An archipelago of small, partially wooded islands connected by footbridges, the park is a few kilometres from the downtown core and one of the finest recreational areas in Ontario. Once you’re in the thick of it, […]

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Masada — A Beacon Of Freedom And Despair

Filed in Travel by on May 21, 2018 0 Comments
Masada — A Beacon Of Freedom And Despair

The British playwright, composer and singer Noel Coward wrote in jest that only “mad dogs and Englishman go out in the midday sun.” His amusing lyrics came to mind during my last visit to Masada, the ancient Jewish rebel fortress conquered by a Roman army in 74 CE. Under a broiling sun in the Judean Desert, […]

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They Rest In Peace In Weissensee

Filed in Travel by on May 8, 2018 0 Comments
They Rest In Peace In Weissensee

Weissensee, the largest Jewish cemetery in Europe, contains the remains of some of the most illustrious figures in German Jewish history. Covering an area of 42 hectares in northeastern Berlin, Weissensee is the final resting place of 115,000 souls in 120 sections. Prominent German Jews ranging from Leo Baeck and Hermann Cohen to Rudolf Mosse and […]

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