After so much time in France, it was about time that I explored some surrounding countries. Last year I ventured out to Switzerland and Spain, and this year it will be Germany and Italy (so far!). I had secured a lovely housesit in the suburbs of Heidelberg.
Yoga and History in Aveyron
Aveyron has the rugged and raw landscape of France, as well as some rugged and raw traditions and people. As I get deeper and deeper into France, I am continuously delighted with the wildly unique regions presenting me with diverse history, culture, tradition, and last but never least, “gastronomie”.
Past vs Present: An Electric Car in Aude
There is something about the Aude region in western Occitanie of France that I can’t help but love. It seems every week I am seeing more of France and its wildly different regions, but I will return to the Cathar Country whenever the opportunity even vaguely presents itself.
The Opal Coast: Northern France
The Opal Coast is a stunning region, with verdant, soft hills similar to the English countryside, yet the eccentricities that make the French countryside so special. It’s the center-stage of a clash between two age-old cultures, and has more history around every corner. It’s certainly worth a visit for a chilly walk along the rocky coast, followed up with a warm welsh rarebit, tasty beer, and the generous nature of your French neighbors.
Carcassonne and the Land of the Cathars
The Land of the Cathars, or as it is more modernly known, Southwest France, is a breathtaking corner of France even in the depths of winter. History comes alive, the wine flows like water, and the people are friendlier than I could ever imagine...
Derry: City of Many Names
The city of Derry - or as it is otherwise known, Londonderry or Daire Calgaich or Derry and Strabane (whew!) - is a city dripping with history. Much of that history is rife with political turmoil, violence, and rivalries. Before I visited Derry, whenever someone mentioned the name, I just thought “the Troubles”. Now, I see the city for what it is today. A vibrant, beautiful, cultural capital of Northern Ireland that gives us the opportunity to learn from our mistakes and enjoy a really good pint.
Zurich: In the Lap of Luxury
Zurich is Switzerland’s largest city, and is made of impressive skylines and fancy shop windows. Although it does not boast many landmarks tourists would flock to, it’s a lovely town to spend a few days wandering through medieval streets and enjoying the lake side. From the salt and pepper shaker towers of Grossmünster to the giant chess boards on the Lindenhof, Zurich is a perfect example of the European way of life in a larger city.
Glamping it Up in Glenarm
It’s not often that you get to go camping on the grounds of a historic castle in Ireland. Not often that you get to fall asleep with a view of green fields and the open blue sea. And certainly not often in perhaps the most luxurious camping “pod” one can find. But that’s glamping in Glenarm!