Volubilis, or وليلي‎ (Walily)

For those of you back home, here is a VERY brief overview of our trips to an amazing archaeological find. Take this information with a grain of salt, as they say, for I am not an expert. Consider this merely a solicitation for further exploration. It’s an ancient city just outside of the town of Moulay Idriss Zerhoun, located in the middle-north of Morocco. Based on … Continue reading Volubilis, or وليلي‎ (Walily)

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Bruges

Tucked up near the coast of northern Flemish Region of Belgium, also known as Flanders, lies the incredible medieval city of Bruges (French), or Brugge (Flemish Dutch). In many ways, it’s like walking back in time. The older canal-based area is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The name is thought to originate from the Old Dutch word for “bridge,” understandably, they are everywhere. In fact, the … Continue reading Bruges

Am I A Tourist?

Am I a tourist? What makes a tourist a tourist? How long must one live in a place to not be a tourist? Is it merely a state of mind, or something more substantial? If I wasn’t born in a particular place, will I forever be a tourist there? I have done my fair share of traveling, especially over the last few years. I’ve been through … Continue reading Am I A Tourist?

Chellah

Within Rabat, the capital of Morocco, are the remains of an ancient city called Chellah. Originally Phoenician and Carthaginian, then Roman, then Muslim, the ruins are fairly well-preserved. Eventually, the site became a cemetery, or necropolis, as the Muslims favored nearby Salé. The site also contains a lovely botanical garden and has become a favored site for local storks to make their nests. Below are … Continue reading Chellah

Local Ksars (Ksor)

Yesterday, I went with my friend, Slimane, on an extended bike ride to explore some local Ksars, or Ksor to use the Arabic plural. Ksars are older, enclosed communities whose expansive structures used traditional construction methods, such as mud, hay, and palm trunks. Think of them as expanding apartment complexes that emerged organically around oases. Some of the larger ones housed many, many families and were … Continue reading Local Ksars (Ksor)

Rupea Citadel

Erika likes to tease me that there are trigger words on brown road signs that she knows will spark my interest. Foremost among them is “fortification.” Anything big and old, I find fascinating. Yesterday, while driving from Sighișoara back to Brașov (this time via the highway) we past brown sign after brown sign that said “fortificata,” but we were on a timeline, so without a preview, it … Continue reading Rupea Citadel

Gawking at Locals

Olympos is a small village on the Greek island of Karpathos described by some as a “living museum.” One of the evidences for this is often given is that “the women still wear traditional clothing.” Another is “the remoteness of the village has kept its traditions intact.” Enticed by these descriptions, Erika and I had been planning to visit the town for several days. To avoid … Continue reading Gawking at Locals

Pamukkale Adventures

Today was our first full day in Pamukkale, Turkey. The name means “cotton castle” and it is famous for its travertine cliffs into which Romans, and others, built baths. For centuries, the Pamukkale waters have been seen as a therapeutic treatment for various ills and people migrate here from around the world to bath in the waters. Tourists used to be able to enter many … Continue reading Pamukkale Adventures