A Day Trip from Split, Croatia: Hiking Mosor

If you spend enough time in Split, eventually the surrounding mountains will start calling you to explore, and rightfully so… Two weeks into our stay in the stunning seaside town, we met up with our local friend, Srđan, eager to retreat to the rugged mountains that so dramatically frame the metropolitan area around Croatia’s second-largest city.

Conquering the Kofel, Oberammergau’s Signature Mountain

Towering over the village of Oberammergau is the Kofel, a Matterhorn-shaped mountain with an elevation of 1,342 meters (4,400 feet). The name Kofel means ‘cone-shaped mountain’ in Celtic, and so hints at the tribes and peoples that once passed through this mountainous part of Germany. The Bavarians we’ve met in this picturesque town are well-versed in theContinue reading “Conquering the Kofel, Oberammergau’s Signature Mountain”

A Day at the Virginia City Camel & Ostrich Races

Every September, camels, ostriches, and jockeys from around the world converge on Virginia City, Nevada for the former mining town’s International Camel & Ostrich Races. We attended the quirky event last year, and it’s taking place again this weekend for the 54th time.

An Afternoon at Claude Monet’s Garden in Giverny, France

Artist Claude Monet‘s name is synonymous with his dreamlike paintings which were inspired by his graceful gardens in Giverny, France, where he lived for 43 years. In 1980, his home and garden were opened to the public allowing Monet’s canvases to come to life. Today, visitors to Giverny can see the Japanese-style footbridge that spans theContinue reading “An Afternoon at Claude Monet’s Garden in Giverny, France”

The Wild Asparagus of Croatia: A Foraging Trip & Lunch in the Dalmatian Countryside

When spring returns to Croatia, residents do what they’ve done for centuries: take to the fields and forests in search of wild asparagus, known in Croatian as šparoge. The asparagus-hunting season has just begun here in central Dalmatia, and last weekend, we were lucky enough to be invited by Croatian friends to go foraging forContinue reading “The Wild Asparagus of Croatia: A Foraging Trip & Lunch in the Dalmatian Countryside”

Azure Skies, Emerald Firs and Sparkling Lake Tahoe: A Second Anniversary Celebration

In 2010, I was twice married — to the same groom. As if describing two seasonal palaces, my husband and I like to playfully refer to our two marriages as the ‘summer wedding’ and the ‘winter wedding’.  Whereas some spouses have a difficult time remembering one wedding anniversary, we aspire to remember the date weContinue reading “Azure Skies, Emerald Firs and Sparkling Lake Tahoe: A Second Anniversary Celebration”

Photo du Jour: The Emerald “Umbrellas” of a California Redwood Forest

“For in the true nature of things, if we rightly consider, every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold and silver.” Martin Luther

San Francisco’s Most Blubbery & Boisterous Residents: The Sea Lions of Pier 39

They occupy prime San Francisco real estate overlooking Alcatraz and the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges. But the lackadaisical California sea lions of Pier 39 don’t seem to be entranced by the sweeping vistas in their neighborhood. Instead, the boisterous mammals pass their days by barking, pushing their neighbors off the dock (to maximize loungingContinue reading “San Francisco’s Most Blubbery & Boisterous Residents: The Sea Lions of Pier 39”