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31 October 2012

Halloween's Haunted Past and Present

Happy Halloween Everyone! Photo: Mount Dora Ghost Walk.
Happy Halloween Everyone! Photo: Mount Dora Ghost Walk.

In anticipation of the those Halloween ghouls and ghosts who plan to tread upon my doorstep on All Hallows Eve, I have often wondered about the origins of Halloween and why we celebrate the traditions we enjoy today. After Christmas, Halloween is my favorite holiday and I revel in all that is Halloween—from dressing up in costume and trick-or-treating to haunted tales recounted by the light of the jack-o'-lantern. And so I set out upon my journey into the past to discover the origins of today's Halloween manifestations—born of rituals and customs bestowed upon us by European civilizations of long ago. I hope you enjoy this haunted tour through Halloween's past and present.

21 October 2012

Guided Tour of Lake Garda in Northern Italy

Lake Garda in northern Italy, the country's largest lake, is world-renowned for its first-class resorts and picturesque settings! All photography in this post via WikiMedia.org.
Lake Garda in northern Italy, the country's largest lake, is renowned for its first-class resorts and picturesque settings! All photography in this post via WikiMedia.org.  

My love affair with the Italy's Alpine region continues with a visit to Italy's Lake District, and this time we're going on a scenic tour of Lake Garda! Cradled in the Italian Alps just south of the Dolomites Mountains and midway between Verona and Brescia, Lake Garda is surrounded by picturesque villages lining its shores, soaring Alpine peaks, verdant olive groves, sprawling vineyards and medieval castles towering high above the villages. Renowned for its world-class luxury resorts and breathtaking scenery, Lake Garda is just 40 minutes away from Verona and Brescia and approximately two hours from the timeless city of Venice. If you're planning to visit any of these northern cities, then consider a day tour through Lake Garda! Check out Exsus.com for more information.

16 October 2012

City View Travel Photography Competition

This contest-winning photo was taken earlier this year in Edam, The Netherlands. It's more like a painting than a photograph and beckons artists with their canvases to capture this picturesque beauty.
This contest-winning photo was taken earlier this year in Edam, The Netherlands. It's more like a painting than a photograph and beckons artists with their canvases to capture its picturesque beauty. 

As you know, photography is an integral part of the mission and success of EuroTravelogue and nothing gives me greater pleasure than to share the visual romance in my articles in hopes of bringing to life my journeys for you! I know that when I read travel writing, the words on the page send my imagination soaring but I love to see captivating photography as well that lures me deeper into the travels of the writer.

01 October 2012

ArtOdysseys - the Emergence of Gothic Architecture

Notre Dame de Paris is probably the most famous Gothic cathedral in the world and another striking example from the early period. All content and photography unless specifically noted is the property of EuroTravelogue™. Unauthorized use is prohibited.
Notre Dame de Paris is probably the most famous Gothic cathedral in the world and a striking example from the early Gothic period. All content and photography unless specifically noted is the property of EuroTravelogue™. Unauthorized use is prohibited.

Welcome to the October edition of the ArtOdyssey—my ongoing series that combines my love of art with my travels along the way. This month, my topic is "Architecture" and I am thrilled to bring to you the celebrated Gothic architecture of France. Ever since I can remember, I have been awestruck by soaring vaults, flying buttresses, towering spires, and of course magnificent stained-glass windows of heavenly light. But until my first visit to France, my only exposure to Gothic architecture had been St. Patrick's Cathedral in NYC, which by the way is Gothic revival since it was constructed in the middle of the 19th century, however it remains one of the finest examples nonetheless. But I yearned for more—I wanted to experience firsthand authentic Gothic that truly dates back to Medieval times, circa 11th-14th centuries. So to France I went to seek out some of the finest examples of Gothic architecture from its emergence to its culmination in the late Gothic period just before the age of the Renaissance. Along our journey, we'll discover Gothic cathedrals and highlight significant elements of each of them that have come to define the Gothic we know today.