Place Dauphine in Paris

17 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Paris / Île-de-France Reading Time:  12 minutes

© Chabe01/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Chabe01/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Place Dauphine is a public square located near the western end of the Île de la Cité in the first arrondissement of Paris. It was initiated by Henry IV in 1607, the second of his projects for public squares in Paris, the first being the Place Royale (now the Place des Vosges). He named it for his son, the Dauphin of France and future Louis XIII, who had been born in 1601. From the “square”, actually triangular in shape, one can access the middle of the Pont Neuf, a bridge which connects the left and right banks of the Seine by passing over the Île de la Cité. A street called, since 1948, Rue Henri-Robert, forty metres long, connects the Place Dauphine and the bridge. Where they meet, there are two other named places, the Place du Pont-Neuf and the Square du Vert-Galant.   read more…

Anacortes in Washington

15 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  10 minutes

Rockfish Grill and Anacortes Brewery © flickr.com - brewbooks/cc-by-sa-2.0

Rockfish Grill and Anacortes Brewery © flickr.com – brewbooks/cc-by-sa-2.0

Anacortes is a city in Skagit County, Washington, United States. The name “Anacortes” is an adaptation of the name of Anne Curtis Bowman, who was the wife of early Fidalgo Island settler Amos Bowman. Anacortes’ population was 15,778 at the time of the 2010 census. It is one of two principal cities of and included in the Mount Vernon-Anacortes Metropolitan Statistical Area. Anacortes is known for the Washington State Ferries dock and terminal serving Lopez Island, Shaw Island, Orcas Island, and San Juan Island, as well as Victoria, British Columbia (via Sidney, British Columbia), on Vancouver Island. There is also a Skagit County-operated ferry that serves Guemes Island, a residential island located across Guemes Channel, north of Anacortes.   read more…

Royal Palace of Aranjuez

13 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  11 minutes

© José Luis Filpo Cabana/cc-by-3.0

© José Luis Filpo Cabana/cc-by-3.0

The Royal Palace of Aranjuez (Spanish: Palacio Real de Aranjuez) is a former Spanish royal residence. It is located 5 km south of Madrid in the town of Aranjuez, Spain. It was established around the time Philip II of Spain moved the capital from Toledo to Madrid. Aranjuez became one of four seasonal seats of government, occupied during the springtime (from about holy week). Thereafter, the court moved successively to Rascafría, El Escorial and wintered in Madrid.   read more…

Great Synagogue in Plzeň

10 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

© Otto Domes/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Otto Domes/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Great Synagogue (Czech: Velká Synagoga) in Plzeň (Pilsen), Czech Republic is the second largest synagogue in Europe. A Viennese architect Max Fleischer drew up the original plans for the synagogue in Gothic style with granite buttresses and twin 65-meter towers. The cornerstone was laid on 2 December 1888 and that was about as far as it got. City councillors rejected the plan in a clear case of tower envy as they felt that the grand erection would compete with the nearby Cathedral of St. Bartholomew.   read more…

Cathedral Quarter in Belfast

8 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  13 minutes

St. Anne Catherdal - flickr.com - Stuart/cc-by-sa-2.0

St. Anne Catherdal – flickr.com – Stuart/cc-by-sa-2.0

The Cathedral Quarter (Irish: Ceathrú na hArdeaglaise) in Belfast, Northern Ireland, is a developing area of the city, roughly situated between Royal Avenue near where the Belfast Central Library building is, and the Dunbar Link in the city centre. From one of its corners, the junction of Royal Avenue, Donegall Street and York Street, the Cathedral Quarter lies south and east. Part of the area, centred on Talbot Street behind the cathedral, was formerly called the Half Bap. The “Little Italy” area was on the opposite side of Great Patrick Street centred on Little Patrick Street and Nelson Street. The Cathedral Quarter extends out to the edge of what can be referred as the old merchant quarter of the city. Past where the merchant area meets the Cathedral Quarter is still mostly merchant trade and services orientated and undeveloped for visitor services. The Cathedral Quarter is so called because St Anne’s Cathedral, a Church of Ireland cathedral, lies at its heart.   read more…

Bevis Marks Synagogue in London

6 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, London Reading Time:  13 minutes

Clock outside the Bevis Marks Synagogue © Ethan Doyle White/cc-by-sa-4.0

Clock outside the Bevis Marks Synagogue © Ethan Doyle White/cc-by-sa-4.0

Bevis Marks Synagogue, officially Qahal Kadosh Sha’ar ha-Shamayim (“Holy Congregation Gate of Heaven”), is the oldest synagogue in the United Kingdom in continuous use. It is located off Bevis Marks, Aldgate, in the City of London. The synagogue was built in 1701 and is affiliated to London’s historic Spanish and Portuguese Jewish community. It is a Grade I listed building. It is the only synagogue in Europe which has held regular services continuously for more than 300 years.   read more…

Ferndale in California

3 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Architecture, General Reading Time:  7 minutes

Main Street © Ellin Beltz/cc-by-sa-3.0

Main Street © Ellin Beltz/cc-by-sa-3.0

Ferndale is a city in Humboldt County, California, United States. Its population was 1,371 at the 2010 census, down from 1,382 at the 2000 census. The city contains dozens of well-preserved Victorian storefronts and homes. Ferndale is the northern gateway to California’s Lost Coast and the city, which is sited on the edge of a wide plain near the mouth of the Eel River, is also located near the extensive preserves of coast redwood forests. Before American settlement, Ferndale was a glade of giant ferns reaching more than six feet, surrounded by alder, willow, Sitka spruce, Douglas fir, coast redwood, swampy land, and windswept prairies. The area was populated by the southern Wiyot people, and centered along the Eel River, where they caught lamprey eels, salmon and sturgeon in iris leaf fish nets, collected shellfish along the river and at its mouth, while cultivating only a California species of tobacco. The town was established in 1852 from settlement by Willard Allard, Seth Louis Shaw, and his brother, Stephen W. Shaw.   read more…

The Marella Discovery

1 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Cruise Ships, Yacht of the Month Reading Time:  11 minutes

leaving the River Tyne, England © Spooglecruft/cc-by-sa-4.0

leaving the River Tyne, England © Spooglecruft/cc-by-sa-4.0

Marella Discovery (formerly Splendour of the Seas and TUI Discovery) is a former Royal Caribbean International Vision-class cruise ship now sailing for Marella Cruises. The second in the line of the Vision-class ships, she features a seven-story lobby, rock-climbing wall, and a 9-hole miniature golf course. Following the announcement on 9 October 2017 that Thomson Cruises would be renamed Marella Cruises, TUI Group also announced that TUI Discovery would adopt the name Marella Discovery at the end of October 2017, and also that she would become the first ship in the Thomson fleet to be based in Asia, home porting Malaysia in Autumn 2018, following the end of her UK debut season.   read more…

Piazza del Campo in Siena

1 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  11 minutes

Palio di Siena on Piazza del Campo © flickr.com - Mirco/cc-by-sa-2.0

Palio di Siena on Piazza del Campo © flickr.com – Mirco/cc-by-sa-2.0

Piazza del Campo is the main public space of the historic center of Siena, Tuscany, Italy and is regarded as one of Europe’s greatest medieval squares. It is renowned worldwide for its beauty and architectural integrity. The and its Torre del Mangia, as well as various palazzi signorili surround the shell-shaped piazza. At the northwest edge is the Fonte Gaia. The twice-a-year horse-race, Palio di Siena, is held around the edges of the piazza. The piazza is also the finish of the annual road cycling race Strade Bianche.   read more…

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