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Crowd-Surfing in Roma and Hanging with the Pope at my Hostel

Any hyperbole or clever phrase you can come up with to describe the absolutely collosal city of Rome is most likely true, and then some.  Throughout its 3,000+ year history, it has been the “Captial of the World” during the Roman Empire, the seat of power for the Catholic Church during the Renaissance, one of […]

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Wash Uffizi, Drive Me to Firenze

After escaping the major metropolitan areas for a few days in the Cinque Terre, it was back to the commotion and crowds of the cities with my next stop being Florence.  Firenze (as they call it in Italian) is most notable for its impressive art galleries, sculpture gardens, architectural facades, and the lasting legacy left by […]

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Living a Tough Life in Cinque Terre

After having spent the majority of my trip so far in large, crowded metropolitan areas, my body was telling me that I was ready to get out into a more natural environment, soak up some countryside, and to adjust to the pace of small-town living.  And I couldn’t have picked a more perfect place than Cinque Terre National Park on […]

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Socca and Canyoning in the Cote d’Azur

Nice, France: Ah yes, the French Riviera.  Just the mention of the name conjures up images of sun-washed beaches framed by gorgeous mountains, thoroughly-tanned locals, vacationing celebrities and high-rollers, and a seemingly endless supply of sunshine.  All of these stereotypes are, in fact, quite true, but alas, my intention of spending 5 days lying on the […]

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Calanques and Bouillabaisse in Marseilles

Just a short train ride south of Paris lies the region known as Provence, long characterized by great wine, great food, rolling hills, and beautiful scenary.  At the heart of Provence, along the southern coast of France, lies the countries oldest city: Marseilles.  Originally founded around 600 B.C. as a trading port for the Greeks, it […]

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Return to Paris

Paris, France: it is a bit of a difficult city to write about.  First, there are almost too many facets of its personality to be able to characterize it properly and too many sights, sounds, and places to experience without actually living there.  Secondly, many have visited the City of Lights and opinions vary wildly — some become […]

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“The Meat Sweats” in Praha, Wien, and Zuerich

The Meat Sweats (definition): The point at which — several hours into a protein-laden feast — you begin to sweat profusely, not due to excessive heat or fatique, but the sheer quantity of meat consumed.  As in “I haven’t had the meat sweats that bad since my last visit to Prague.”  More on this later, however…. Prague, […]

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A Brief Layover in Lyon

Lyon, France is part culinary destination, part university town, and part scenic get-away in the Southeast portion of the French countryside, complete with an “Old Town” and a bustling city center between two rivers.  I’ll go ahead and admit, however, that I didn’t spend nearly enough time here — and thus, my short stay will also only […]

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Museums in Madrid and Chasing Quixote in Toledo

Madrid, Spain When putting my itinerary together (a few days before traveling to any destination, that is), I was a bit apprehensive about visiting Barcelona and Madrid back-to-back.  I knew going into it that eventhough Madrid is the capital city of Spain, it wouldn’t have the panache and flair of Barcelona, the amazing culinary scene, […]

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Jamon and Beach-Bumming in Barcelcona

My time in Barcelona, Spain has unfortunately come to an end (thus the writing of this post).  Whereas this is much to my dismay, my wallet and cholesterol level are probably jumping for joy.  The city is equal parts foodie paradise, beach town, historical port city, vacation destination, and architectural marvel; all combined with the […]

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