Palaces and Castles
“ And if she asks you why, you can tell her that I told you, that I’m tired of castles in the air “Don McLean (I love that song)
Castles and palaces are pieces of the past. They are evocative of the people who lived in them many centuries ago. They are rich in folklore and history and often built with astonishing craftsmanship and innovative design. Here are some of the palaces that I have toured. Many of these photos were before I was blogging so less palace and more look I was there shots.
Alhambra – Granada, Spain
Buckingham Palace – London, England
Buda Castle – Budapest, Hungary (view near castle)
Doge’s Palace (Palazzo Ducale) – Venice, Italy
Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh, Scotland
Neuschwanstein – Hohenschwangau, Germany
Pena Palace – Sintra, Portugal
Peterhof, (known as Petrodvorets and Petergof) – Petergof ,Saint Petersburg, Russia
Pitti Palace – Florence, Italy
Prague Castle – Prague, Czech Republic
Schoenbrunn – Vienna, Austria
Trakai Castle – Trakai, Lithuania.
Palace Of Versailles, Versailles, France
Street Art Around The World
Since cave painting, human beings cannot resist the urge to draw and write on walls. It is my favorite art. I am drawn to the bright colors, the fact that it is available to everyone and especially, the mystery. Who did this? Why? What does it mean? Sometimes I see the same artist in different countries. Here are some favorites from around the world.
Capetown. South Africa
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Tel Aviv, Israel
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Los Angeles, USA
My Top Ten Desserts In The World So Far
“I am starting to think that maybe memories are like this dessert. I eat it, and it becomes a part of me, whether I remember it later or not.” Erica Bauermeister
When the mood for dessert strikes, I am there. I consider it a necessity not a choice to try desserts when I am traveling. There isn’t a problem in the world that a good dessert can’t make feel a little better. Here are some of my favorites in no particular order.
Pastel de Nata – Portugal
Baklava – Greece
Red Velvet Cupcakes – USA
Semolina Halva – Turkey (nice with fresh fruit)
Black Sesame Ice Cream – Japan
Malva Pudding (poeding) – South Africa
Sweet Sticky Rice With Coconut Cream and Mango – Thailand
Dulce de Leche – Argentina ( on ice cream, cookies, cake, bread)
Fresh Acai and Tapioca Ice Cream – Belem, Brazil
Mango Pudding – Hong Kong
Fly safe, JAZ
Last Ten Things I Googled
Google can bring you back 100,000 answers. A librarian can bring you back the right one.” Neil Gaiman
Weather in Petra, Jordan.
What is apple cider vinegar good for?
How are the teams shaping up on the Voice?
Did the brother kill JonBenet Ramsey?
Best things to buy in Portugal.
Are there Starbucks in Jordan, Israel and Portugal? (for my collection not for the coffee)
Guy who asked me out in Lisbon.
Best stain removers.
How much water has to leak before you have mold?
Fernando Pessoa quotes.
Best falafel in Tel Aviv
and that was just this morning.
Safest Countries To Visit Now
“These are all I have.I do not have the wide,bright beacon of some solid old lighthouse, guiding ships safely home, past the jagged rocks. I only have these little glimmers that flicker and then go out.” Rebecca Wells, Divine Secrets Of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood
“A person isn’t safe anywhere these days.” How often have I heard that lately – terrorism, zika, gun violence. Before that it was the fear of aids, dengue, swine flu and malaria. So for those of you who would like to lessen the odds, these are some of the safest countries to travel to.
Slovenia is a relatively safe country to visit. They have a strong economy and a stable democracy. The days of being part of communist Yugoslavia ended when they established their independence in 1991. They are members of both NATO and the EU. You should probably use tick repellent in the beautiful national parks.
Japan is safer than most countries. It is definitely safer then the countries we come from. They have a very low crime rate and Japanese don’t worry about locking their doors or walking home late at night alone which is a nice way to live. Is it 100 per cent safe ?- no.
Americans believe that Canada is a crime free oasis. Violent crime is very low but purses and wallets do often go missing. Don’t leave your things unattended,
There is very little crime in Switzerland but most of it is geared to tourists. Car theft, pick pocketing and purse snatching are common in tourist areas. Sometimes football games get a little rowdy and you might see police in riot gear.
I’m surprised that the Czech Republic has such a high safety rating. I’ve been to Prague a few times and I didn’t feel that safe. Then again, nothing happened to me. Don’t exchange money on the street. Petty theft is very common in tourist areas and taxi drivers are known to cheat you. It’s always best to get a taxi in front of a hotel. If you have a problem, the police station is open 24 hours a day and has English translators.
Portugal is one of the safest countries to visit. That is good for me to know because I am going there soon. If you get very drunk and it is late at night, you could become a target for thieves. Violent crime is rare but they do have a few gangs that hang out on the beach late at night. A late night beach walk toward a group of people who look like they might be trouble is probably not a good idea. Also if anyone approaches you to buy drugs or anything on the street like sunglasses, which could turn out to be drugs, just say no.
New Zealand is a very safe place to travel with few diseases, a great healthcare system and a low crime rate. The terrain can be challenging outside of the main city. You need to be reasonably fit to enjoy the new Zealand bush. New Zealand’s clear, unpolluted atmosphere and relatively low latitudes produce sunlight stronger than much of Europe or North America, so if you don’t wear sunblock, be ready for a major sunburn.
There is no travel advisory in effect for Austria and it is one of the safest countries in the world. You might get a stomach ache from eating all that schnitzel, sacher torte and strudel. There are very few violent crimes but bicycle theft is becoming a problem. Also don’t walk in the bike lanes. As in the Netherlands, you could easily be hit by a cyclist. I just read that racism is a problem (not a violent one) especially in villages where there are no non-white people. What exactly is considered non-white to an Austrian anyway? Could be anything. I think I have to disagree with this one though all the lists say it is very safe.
Travelers do not worry about their safety in Denmark. Denmark is the second most peaceful country in the world according to the Global Index. it score very well in the level of violent crime and likelihood of violent demonstrations, political stability, freedom of the press, hostility to foreigners and respect for human rights. This makes it a great place to live and travel.
Iceland is beyond safe to travel to when it comes to crime .However you should pay attention to natural dangers. Signs like Do Not Drive Up The Glacier Without A 4×4 or Do Not Go Here – mean it. There is no cell service in many places so you may experience a bit of technology withdrawal but the beautiful scenery will easily fill up the time.
Other safe countries include Norway, Sweden, Finland, Ireland and Bhutan. So if you’re feeling nervous, you still have many great options to travel.