OK, there's absolutely no evidence that Orpheus, the mythical musician who set the trees and rocks a-dancing with his melodies but lost his wife Eurydice forever with that fateful, most verboten backward glance on the way up from Hades where a nasty snake bite had dispatched her, was born here in Xanthi in Thrace.
Every year, MasterCard puts together its Global Destination Cities Index, which tracks airline ticket purchases, souvenir purchases, and other travel spending data to figure out which cities are the most popular with tourists. Here's 2015's list.
No, not psycho-drama, nor social drama, but a town in Macedonia at the foot of the Rhodope Mountains about an hour by bus from Kavala -- thus called not for any Thespian reason but apparently shortened from its classical name Hydrama meaning rich in water, which it indeed is.
This was a very sunny dish, though I probably say that because for us it evoked Sicily.
I've learned living abroad that there are two types of vacation destinations. There are places that make it into the ears, eyes and guidebooks of international tourists as the places to go. Then there are the places local go. Oftentimes those lists are completely different.
These six historic hotels are all housed within former castles, and thus exude a regal vibe from the awe-inspiring facades to the antique-filled interiors.
While adventurous travelers are urged to visit Cuba before authenticity goes the way of a Starbucks on every corner, travelers should take a little extra time preparing, as heading to the island still isn't that easy.
In the year 353/2 B.C. a daughter was born to Alexander the Great's father, King Philip II of Macedon, on the very same day that he won the Battle of Crocus Field over the Phocians in Thessaly, central Greece, with the help of crack Thessalian horsemen.
Today, Beersheba is a modern university town of some 200,000 people, at 25 miles from the Gaza strip further than either Sderot or Netivot, though still within range of incoming grad rockets that have at times pummelled the city.
Sitting on that terrace with a double espresso macchiato and relishing the dreamy view, we could have been eating Pop-Tarts and we'd have been as happy as clams.
Bobby and Becca spent much of their lives devoted to educating Tennessee schoolchildren. But as retirement neared, the couple knew their teachers' pensions wouldn't be enough to allow them to continue living comfortably just outside Nashville. So they retired to Ecuador.
If Sderot is known as the Bomb Shelter Capital of the World (previous blog) Netivot, eight miles further south along the fraught border with Gaza, has been called the Varanasi of Israel, likened to Hinduism's holiest city because of its links to Jewish mysticism and miracles.
As exciting as it is to dine where you've never dined before, it's nice to return to old favorites when traveling to a familiar destination. And for Jackie and me, there's no destination as familiar as London, which we visit several times a year.
This photo documentary on the Israeli border town of Sderot is not intended to get into the political argument between Israel and Palestine over who is right and who is wrong but merely to take a walk through a town that has earned the title of Bomb Shelter Capital of the World for its ubiquitous reinforced shelters against the hailstorm of rockets and mortars from Gaza.
All in all, a fascinating time in magnificent scenery amid spectacular architecture, even if the faith thing doesn't really work for me.
It is so quiet that if you need a cab the doorman may have to dash to the next street to fetch one for you.