Visiting Pienza, a Cute Tuscan Town – Things to Do & Travel Guide
I went on a day tour of Tuscan towns and Pienza was on the itinerary. I didn’t know much about it before arriving, but it’s a small Renaissance town with beautiful views of the Tuscan countryside – the Val d’Orcia. We had about 2 hours there and I absolutely loved it. Even though the town is tiny, I would recommend a stay of longer than 2 hours.
The History of Pienza
Pienza’s original name was Corsignano and was established in the early medieval era. But Pienza’s history changed drastically when a man named Enea Silvio Piccolomini – popularly known as … Continue reading
Tags: europe, italy, pienza
A Quick Trip to Antwerp, a Beautiful Belgian City: Things to Do & Travel Guide
I’d been wanting to visit Antwerp for years and got the chance when I visited the Netherlands. Timing gave me only one day to enjoy this beautiful city, which I quickly learned would not nearly be enough to explore everything it had to offer. So in this post I’ll cover the things I did do (all of which are amazing) and the things I didn’t quite get to – with lots of reasons to visit in between.
A History of Antwerp
Antwerp’s history goes all the way back to the Franks, but its Golden Age came in the 16th century … Continue reading
Tags: antwerp, belgium, europe
A Former Local’s Travel Guide to Paris, France (Things to do & more)
I was lucky enough to study abroad in Paris, the city of love and light. Over several months, I got to explore the city and acquainted myself with it on a more intimate basis. I got to visit every section, visit a lot of museums, and eventually this place dug a hole in my heart. I’ve returned quite a few times since my term there. So I’d like to share with you my recommendations for Paris, from the obvious to the more obscure.
The Essential Sights of Paris
Of course you can’t go to Paris and miss out on the … Continue reading
Tags: europe, france, paris
Delft, the City of Vermeer & Royal Delftware: Things to Do & Travel Guide
Delft was one of the places I chose to visit in the Netherlands because it looked cute and had a history I wanted to learn more about. It’s the home of the beautiful Royal Delft Blue porcelain as well as Johannes Vermeer. I was excited to see, after hundreds of years, what the city is like today.
A Short History of Delft
Delft dates all the way back to around the 11th century. It grew to be a very large city with various trades in beer, textiles, printing, and the arts. Though it was destroyed by fire in 1536, William … Continue reading
Tags: delft, europe, the netherlands
The Lovely City of Leiden, Home of Rembrandt: Things to Do & Travel Guide
When I was deciding where to visit from Amsterdam, Leiden stood out as a charming place to visit with some interesting sites to see, particularly for the painter Rembrandt van Rijn. Though I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, I was excited to see what this city had to offer.
A Brief History of Leiden
Leiden is one of the oldest places I visited in the Netherlands, as it it first appeared in written record during the 9th century. Its history is also a lot richer since Leiden became known for various trades – particularly textiles like broadcloth, but also … Continue reading
Tags: europe, leiden, the netherlands
Edam, Volendam, and Marken: 3 Charming Dutch Towns
One place I wanted to see was the Dutch countryside, and Edam, Volendam, and Marken were places that stood out to me. Each place is small and mostly residential, so they can be seen easily together on a day trip from Amsterdam. I happened to go on a cold and rainy day but still enjoyed these three charming places. Actually, I think it was one of my favourite parts of the Netherlands!
Edam is the oldest place on this trip. Due to the shipbuilding and fishing trades, Edam prospered in the 13th and 14th centuries. Flooding that occurred in … Continue reading
Tags: edam, europe, marken, the netherlands, volendam
Admiring Art & More in Amsterdam: Things to Do & Travel Guide
I first went to Amsterdam several years ago as a day trip. I was sick that day so a bit disoriented, and I didn’t remember too much of my adventure. So going back to Amsterdam was a way of redeeming my relationship with the city. Amsterdam is home to many, many museums so I was excited to get to see those and dive deeper into the world of Dutch art. I’m very glad I went and now have a much clearer view of this beautiful, unique city.
A Short History of Amsterdam
You’ll see a few shirts and signs that … Continue reading
Tags: amsterdam, europe, the netherlands
A Visit to Assisi, the Home of Saint Francis – Things to Do & Travel Guide
I first visited Assisi when I was 16 and absolutely fell in love with it. Even though rain was pouring down hard, I found the town so charming and loved the sweeping views it had over the Umbrian countryside. So when I returned to Italy as an adult, Assisi made my list of places to return. Not only did I get perfect weather, I had a lot more time to explore and appreciate its extensive history.
The History of Assisi
Assisi dates back to the times of the Romans when it was probably called “Assisium.” Its history is tumulus with … Continue reading
Tags: assisi, europe, italy
A Look at Arezzo, City of Frescoes – Things to Do & Travel Guide
There are so many small towns to visit in Italy and it was tough deciding which ones I wanted to visit. Arezzo ultimately caught my attention simply because my friend had studied art there. So, armed with a list of places to visit, I set to spend a few hours exploring this Tuscan town.
A Short History of Arezzo
Arezzo started as a major city for the Etruscans. Like many Etruscan cities, it was conquered by the Romans in the 3rd century BC and was subsequently part of Lombardy and the Holy Roman Empire. The structure changed a lot under … Continue reading
Tags: arezzo, europe, italy
The Medieval Underground City of Orvieto – Things to do & Travel Guide
Orvieto’s only a train ride away from Rome and I was curious to visit since it dates to Etruscan times. What’s particularly fascinating about Orvieto is its city was underground, and I was eager to see what an underground city was all about. So I hopped on the train and made my way to this gorgeous, unique place. Here’s what I thought of it.
The History of Orvieto
I usually start histories at human inhabitation but it’s important to know that Orvieto is actually on a volcanic rock (called tuffa). Because of this, the rock seeps in moisture (meaning … Continue reading
Tags: europe, italy, orvieto