MoMath – in Manhattan

MoMath – in Manhattan

For people of my generation anyway, if we were asked the question ‘what subject did you really dislike at school’ then many of us would have the same answer. Mathematics! I don’t really know why that is but I have an idea. Could it be that it was...
Visiting the UK: White Swan Hotel, Alnwick

Visiting the UK: White Swan Hotel, Alnwick

The sub-title for this article could be ‘Dine in the Olympic’ – except the word ‘Olympic’ could be crossed out and the word ‘Titanic’ substituted. But I’m getting ahead of myself… I’ll get back to that in a...
Isokon, Lawn Road Flats: London

Isokon, Lawn Road Flats: London

Built in 1934, this modernist building housing small but efficient (and wonderfully designed) apartments became popular with its inhabitants – and those inhabitants included artists, designers, writers, architects … and even spies. Today the building is...
Fiat Tagliero Building, Asmara, Eritrea

Fiat Tagliero Building, Asmara, Eritrea

You could describe Asmara as a tiny chunk of early twentieth century Italy, right there in Africa – close to the Red Sea. Why Italy? Italy occupied Eritrea for many years and during the Mussolini days, modern architects were encouraged to travel there to create...
The Glacier Express, Switzerland

The Glacier Express, Switzerland

One of the world’s most scenic railways, the Glacier Express, is a trip that should certainly be on your list. It travels through mountain terrain, encountering bridges, tunnels and viaducts, meanders through picturesque villages and offers panoramic views for a...
Palácio da Alvorada, Brazil

Palácio da Alvorada, Brazil

This amazing mid-century building is the official residence of the President of Brazil but it is open to the public who wish to visit this Oscar Niemeyer-designed masterpiece. It was built in 1957 and 1958. Needless to say, because the building is the home and...
Chain of Rocks Bridge

Chain of Rocks Bridge

Believe it or not, this scary bridge was open to regular traffic for forty years. Now the trucks and cars that used to cross the Mississippi via this bridge are now ghosts of the past – but the bridge is still open for foot and cycle use. It was first opened in...
Millau, France

Millau, France

The town of Millau dates back over three thousand years. And yet look again at that photograph above. The silver structure you see towering over this tiny town is the Millau Viaduct that majestically spans the valley. It is part of the autoroute system from Paris...
Visiting the UK: Banbury

Visiting the UK: Banbury

Ride a cock-horse to Banbury Cross, To see a fine lady upon a white horse; Rings on her fingers and bells on her toes, And she shall have music wherever she goes And you can go and see her. See the image above. Banbury is located about 75 miles north of London and is...
Skovshoved Petrol Station, Denmark

Skovshoved Petrol Station, Denmark

Even a humble filling station can be a thing of wonder when it’s created by a world renown designer. The Skovshoved Petrol Station, on the outskirts of Copenhagen, was designed in the nineteen thirties by Arne Jacobsen. His client was the Texaco Company. The...
Walden 7, Sant Just Desvern. Spain

Walden 7, Sant Just Desvern. Spain

When you read about the history of this astonishing building – erected in 1975 – it’s likely that you’ll be told that the architect was Spaniard Ricardo Bofill. Well, yes, but in fact Bofill never completed his architectural training. The...
Bob’s Big Boy Burgers in Burbank

Bob’s Big Boy Burgers in Burbank

Of course, there are those who think that fast-food burgers are the work of the devil but even amongst us there are also those who love Mid Century Modern architecture (and the lifestyle it conjures up) and if you’re in the Hollwood area, then Bob’s is...
Muynak, Uzbekistan

Muynak, Uzbekistan

One of the creepiest places in the world, Muynak , is a sad testimony to what the human race can do to totally mess up the natural world. The town of Muynak was once a thriving seaport with a successful fishing industry. It stood on the shores of the Aral Sea –...
19 Cleveland Street, London?

19 Cleveland Street, London?

Once you’ve visited the obvious tourist traps in London, the chances are that you’ll start to explore the less-familiar aspects of the city. And there are several reasons why you might end up in the Cleveland Street area. For example, Charles Dickens lived...
L’Ansecoy Bay, Mustique

L’Ansecoy Bay, Mustique

When you visit the island of Mustique you really are walking in the footsteps of the rich and famous. The island is a private one, these days owned by a company that is made up of the property owners. In the past, the island was a safe haven for Princess Margaret (the...
Quixote Winery, Napa Valley, California

Quixote Winery, Napa Valley, California

If you enjoy wine (me!) and love to gaze at architecture (me, again!) then a trip to the Quixote Winery is a must. The Stag’s Leap Winnery was bought in 1971 by Carl Doumani. Over the next two decades, the winery and its manor house were carefully restored and...
‘Golden Brains’. Russian Academy of Science, Moscow

‘Golden Brains’. Russian Academy of Science, Moscow

The story is more than likely an urban legend but the building is real enough – standing proudly in Moscow since the nineteen nineties. It’s a part of the Russian Academy of Science. The building looks as though it was created in the nineteen sixties and...
Visiting the UK: Trafalgar Square

Visiting the UK: Trafalgar Square

Yes, I know that I tend to extol the virtues of other tourist places in England in addition to London, but there are some features of the city that are quirky enough to be included on this website. One of them is to be found in the famous Trafalgar Square. It’s...
Setenil de las Bodegas, Spain

Setenil de las Bodegas, Spain

Spain remains the second most visited country in the world. But in the twentieth century many of its visitors were flocking to inexpensive coastal resorts for cheap beach vacations. People visited the country but saw nothing beyond the suntan and beachside bars....
Hundertwasser Toilets, Kawakawa, New Zealand

Hundertwasser Toilets, Kawakawa, New Zealand

Unless we are rather weird, have an unpleasant medical condition or are an alien from another far-off planet, most of us visit the loo a few times a day. But in Kawakawa in New Zealand, people visit the public toilets in order to take photographs and to ooh and aah....
Maeklong Railway Market: Thailand

Maeklong Railway Market: Thailand

Visiting local markets is an experience that most of us enjoy when we’re travelling. Markets are a great way to explore the local culture and make some great purchases. This one, the Maeklong Market, is a must if you’re visiting Thailand. The wonderful...
Craighead Caverns, Sweetwater, Tennessee

Craighead Caverns, Sweetwater, Tennessee

The Craighead CAverns are a series of underground caves and huge enclosed areas that make up an extensive cavern system, complete with huge underground lake. The Lost Sea, as it is known, is the largest underground lake in the USA and the second largest in the world....
Elephant Rock, Heimaey Island, Iceland

Elephant Rock, Heimaey Island, Iceland

Isn’t Elephant Rock just fantastic? It really does look like a sleepy elephant dipping his trunk into the ocean. And Elephant Rock is just one of the many sights to see and things to do on this small Icelandic island. The island of Heimaey is just 7 x 4...
Wieliczka Salt Mine, Poland

Wieliczka Salt Mine, Poland

Did you know that at one time, salt was an amazingly valuable commodity? They say that in days gone by, salt was more valuable than diamonds. And just like diamonds, salt was traditionally mined from the ground. Visiting a salt mine might not sound like one of the...
Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris

Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris

Writers, artists, politicians, entertainers … even a well-known fertility symbol are all together in 110 acres in Paris. From Jim Morrison to Oscar Wilde, from Edith Piaf to Maria Callas you can visit them all, or their graves, at any rate, completely free of...
Bedale, North Yorkshire

Bedale, North Yorkshire

When you visit the market town of Bedale in North Yorkshire be sure to visit the building in the photograph above. Take a selfie of you and it and ask your friends if they can guess what in earth this tiny house’s original purpose was. It was built in the early...
Guatapé, Colombia

Guatapé, Colombia

No-one today really seems to know why the buildings of Guatape are painted in such wonderful colours. Or why they tend to feature brightly coloured murals at the bottom couple of feet of the walls. However, the result is spectacular. The lower level murals, which...
AIR Studios, Montserrat

AIR Studios, Montserrat

It was a matter that was debated at the time, but in recent years it’s pretty well known that the musical phenomenon that was The Beatles would not have had the quality of music that was created without the person who was referred to as ‘the Fifth...
251 Menlove Avenue, Liverpool

251 Menlove Avenue, Liverpool

Back in those days, no-one ever thought that this ordinary suburban semi-detached house on the outskirts of Liverpool would one day become a museum. Some would even call it a shrine. One of the strangest musical phenomena in living memory was that of The Beatles, a...
Caminito del Rey, Spain

Caminito del Rey, Spain

If you’re not fond of heights then El Caminito del Rey is somewhere that you really shouldn’t go. But if heights don’t bother you, or if you enjoy being scared out of your wits then this scary hike is definitely for you. The walkway runs alongside...
London: Handel & Hendrix

London: Handel & Hendrix

Well, here we have two very different musicians. One, in recent memory, lived in the twentieth century. The other in the eighteenth. But surprisingly, only a wall separated their living quarters. George Handel lived at 25 Brook Street in Mayfair. Two hundred years...
Koreshan State Historic Site, Florida

Koreshan State Historic Site, Florida

This is the most fabulous state park with tropical foliage, exciting wildlife, plenty of outdoor activities and campgrounds. Once a week there’s even a highly-recommended farmers market. Visitors rave about this historic site … even more so when they...
Ogopogo. The Monster of Okanagan Lake

Ogopogo. The Monster of Okanagan Lake

Yes, the story goes that a sea monster by the name of Ogopogo is alive and well and lurking in the Okanagan Lake of British Columbia, Canada. It seems that the Canadians are no more level-headed than the Scots who, of course, have their own Loch Ness version. What is...
The Austrian Village with Theft-Proof Road Signs

The Austrian Village with Theft-Proof Road Signs

I know that this article has a cumbersome title. And I know that usually, the title will be the name of the place I’m talking about. That’s just easier for everyone. Like ‘Fort Lauderdale, Florida’ or ‘Whitby, Yorkshire’. You know...
El Peñón de Guatapé, Colombia

El Peñón de Guatapé, Colombia

El Peñón de Guatapé, the Rock of Guatapé, is the weirdest thing – as you can see from the photograph. (See the video below too). This isn’t man-made, it’s a natural object. And there it sits, all alone, just waiting for you to visit it. Not a...
Visiting the UK. Abbey Road, London

Visiting the UK. Abbey Road, London

What you see above is probably the most famous pedestrian crossing in the world. Recorded in 1969, Abbey Road was an album by the Beatles and the cover featured the four band members walking across the road on the crossing. Use the map below to locate the crossing our...
Český Krumlov Castle. And Bears

Český Krumlov Castle. And Bears

This amazing castle in the Czech Republic dates from 1240. It’s an astonishing place to visit. The town of Český Krumlov is a designed UNESCO World Heritage Site and quite rightly. You can see some of the highlights of the castle in the video below. Since the...
Harran Beehive Houses, Turkey

Harran Beehive Houses, Turkey

In the USA, domestic air conditioning wasn’t available until the mid-nineteen fifties but other countries had the problem solved in ancient times. Take, for example, the beehive houses of Harran – examples of which are pictured above. Beehive houses were...
Dove Cottage, Cumbria

Dove Cottage, Cumbria

In 1799, English poet William Wordsworth, moved into Dove Cottage – a former inn – near Ambleside in what is now the stunning Lake District National Park. The area is justifiably famous for its hills, mountains, waterfalls and lakes. A couple of years...
Rjukan. Norway. Mirrored Sunshine

Rjukan. Norway. Mirrored Sunshine

Norway has stunning scenery. The lakes, the mountains … they are beautiful and popular with travellers. But what can be done for those who live in the small towns and villages that are set in the shadow of these mountains? The tallest mountain in...
Blorenge, Wales, UK

Blorenge, Wales, UK

What do a twentieth-century showjumping horse and a delicious tropical fruit have in common? This hill in South Wales, Blorenge. I’ll come to that in a minute.Borenge is described sometimes as a mountain, sometimes as a hill. As I like my mountains to be rugged...
Cape Romano Dome House, Florida

Cape Romano Dome House, Florida

Some people think that they were built by aliens but the fact of the matter is that the Cape Romano Dome House, now abandoned, was built in 1980 by an American businessman named Bob Lee. (I’ll admit that the alien story is more romantic though). I imagine that...
Visiting Sweden. Slottsskogen, Gothenburg

Visiting Sweden. Slottsskogen, Gothenburg

Reluctant as I am to use an aged cliché, it’s nevertheless important when we’re travelling to have some time to ‘stop and smell the flowers’. Travelling can be very hectic, especially when most of us only have a limited number of time to spend...
Visiting the UK: The Crooked Spire, Chesterfield

Visiting the UK: The Crooked Spire, Chesterfield

If you’re travelling up the Mi motorway from the south of England to Yorkshire or Scotland or all points north then watch out for a sign directing you to Chesterfield. This lovely Derbyshire market town is worth visiting for several reasons but a tourist...
Fort Lauderdale, Johnny Weissmuller and the ISHOF

Fort Lauderdale, Johnny Weissmuller and the ISHOF

The story I am going to tell you today is a legend. I don’t know whether it’s true – but I rather hope that it is. But before I get to that, I’m going to tell you several things that are absolutely true that all come together in the story of...
Chateau d’If: France

Chateau d’If: France

I’m pretty much in love with France and if I had to live somewhere other than my favourite Florida, then France it would be. Especially the south. Especially Marseilles. In fact, here’s a quote from Vincent Van Gogh: I am working with the enthusiasm of a...
Safranbolu, Turkey

Safranbolu, Turkey

The Old Town of Safranbolu is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and offers a spectacular sightseeing opportunity for the traveller.  It’s easy to get to the town via train or road especially if you’re travelling from Istanbul or Ankara (Ankara being...
Hooray for Hollywood

Hooray for Hollywood

In 1923, the Crescent Sign Company of Los Angeles were commissioned to create a huge sign. It was to advertise a new housing development, the name of which was Hollywoodland. It was intended to be a temporary structure that would last for about eighteen months –...
Paternoster Elevator: Sheffield, Yorkshire

Paternoster Elevator: Sheffield, Yorkshire

If you speak British English, then you will refer to it as a ‘lift’. If you’re American, or were taught to speak English in the American way, then you’ll call it an ‘elevator’. But despite this difference, I’ll bet that we all...
Visiting Greece: The Olive Tree of Vouves

Visiting Greece: The Olive Tree of Vouves

Most days during meal preparation, I’m likely to grab the bottle of olive oil. Sauteeing, dressing a salad, that olive oil is used so many times. And sometimes I’m in danger of being one of those children you hear about who think that meat comes in a...
Spain: Autódromo de Sitges-Terramar

Spain: Autódromo de Sitges-Terramar

For many years now, travellers have been attracted to abandoned places. This isn’t surprising as most have an atmosphere that’s hard to compare with anywhere else. It’s as though, forgive a little poeticness – these place still retain the...
Two Egg, Florida

Two Egg, Florida

Yes, there really is a place called Two Egg in Florida. Google maps will even confirm it. And doesn’t it amuse you that it’s two singulars, rather than being Two Eggs? The Two Egg website says that the name developed because of the farm produce that the...
Dying Lion Monument, Lucerne, Switzerland

Dying Lion Monument, Lucerne, Switzerland

The monument depicts a mortally wounded lion and was described by Mark Twain as ‘the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world’ It was carved in 1820-21 to commemorate the Swiss Guards who died in the French Revolution. Mark Twain describes it...
Shakespeare and Company, Paris

Shakespeare and Company, Paris

This quirky bookstore, which seems to be so very French, was opened in Paris in 1951 — by an American, George Whitman. Although it’s a legitimate commercial concern and sells new and secondhand books it’s also a sort of literary drop-in centre and...
The Smallest House in Great Britain: Conwy, Wales

The Smallest House in Great Britain: Conwy, Wales

The British Isles, The United Kingdom, Britain … all give you a clue that when you go there, you have the chance of not only visiting England. You’ll find plenty of articles on this site about places to visit throughout the UK – places that...
United Record Pressing. Nashville TN

United Record Pressing. Nashville TN

United Record Pressing opened up for business in Nashville in 1949. The business was a success – creating the new and popular vinyl records. It was a specialist business indeed. As the business expanded into the fifties and early sixties, it was Motown music...
Villefranche-sur-Mer, France

Villefranche-sur-Mer, France

When I was a kid, we often spent our family holidays travelling around the area you see below on the map. Favourites were Monaco, Nice, Cannes and Northern Italy. So it’s quite likely that I’ve been to Villefranche-sur-Mer but I really want to go there now...
Nordschleife Nurburgring: Germany

Nordschleife Nurburgring: Germany

If you’re a motor racing fan (like me) then the Nurburgring needs no introduction whatsoever. But have you driven it? If not, add it to your to-do list right now. These days, the ‘ring even offers plenty for the non-motorsport fans in the family....
Monument to the Unknown Artist: London

Monument to the Unknown Artist: London

There are a couple of unusual things that you might need to know if you come across this sculpture in London. The first is that it isn’t the work of one artist but of a collective. That’s not terribly unusual but stand and watch the sculpture for a few...
Key West’s Dark Past: Carl Tanzler

Key West’s Dark Past: Carl Tanzler

When you visit Key West these days it’s difficult to imagine that events of true creepiness took place there. Today it’s a pretty innocuous place and plenty of fun for cruise passengers and tourists. But one of the creepiest events I’ve ever heard...
Fernando de Noronha Island

Fernando de Noronha Island

If you were to create your dream island, what would it be like? Mine would be exactly like Fernando de Noronha. Tropical weather, stunning views and, as you can see in the photograph above, the deepest blue and sparkling ocean. There are swaying palm trees, lovely...
Lake Maggiore: The Legend of the Bugatti

Lake Maggiore: The Legend of the Bugatti

Lake Maggiore is simply beautiful. This sparkling lake is located partly in Italy and partly in Switzerland. And during the early twentieth century, there was a curious legend regarding the lake – a legend that turned out to be true. Locals were sure that a 1926...
Château de Candé, France

Château de Candé, France

Château de Candé is situated in Monts, Indre-et-Loire and, although it isn’t one of the grandest chateaux in France, it has an interesting historical significance. It was here in June 1937 that the abdicated king, now retitled the Duke of Windsor, married his...
Colonia Fara: Italy

Colonia Fara: Italy

  it seems that in the 1930s, Hitler and Mussolini were on the same page when it came to building coastal resorts of the people. Hitler had Prora and Mussolini had Colonia Fara. And both still exist and are equally spooky. Also, both are in the process of being...
Visiting Norway: Z2 Georg Thiele

Visiting Norway: Z2 Georg Thiele

Visit the Narvik area in Norway and you’ll find that the scenery is breathtaking. And as you look out over the fjord, at the blue waters, you might spot an incongruous man-made object. It’s been there since 1940 and was once the proud ship, the Georg...
Chuck Berry’s House. St Louis, Missouri

Chuck Berry’s House. St Louis, Missouri

Chuck Berry was known as the father of rock ‘n’ roll and today, the house he lived in for several years and where he wrote several of his most well-known classics, is on the National Register of Historic Places. The house was already 40 years old when the...
St. Peter’s Church, Woolton, Liverpool

St. Peter’s Church, Woolton, Liverpool

St. Peter’s Church has an unusual connection. The clue is in the church’s location. Wikipedia describes Woolton as ‘an affluent suburb of Liverpool’ and this might suggest something to you. Liverpool is well-known for many things, one of which...
Visiting France: Chez Claude Monet

Visiting France: Chez Claude Monet

In the late nineteenth century, Claude Monet – the painter who was known as the Father of Impressionism – was travelling on a train in northern France. He spotted a very small but very attractive village called Giverny. He decided that this was where he...
Ghost Town: Oradour-sur-Glane

Ghost Town: Oradour-sur-Glane

It was June 10th, 1944 – at the height of World War Two. The village of Oradour-sur-Glane in Nazi-occupied France was destroyed by the Germans. The inhabitants, over 600 men, women and children, were massacred. In the entire village, there were only six...
Baku, Azerbaijan

Baku, Azerbaijan

The photograph above typifies Baku as the city is an unusual mix of extremely modern architecture plus ancient buildings. It is one of the quickest-growing cities in the world and has every possible modern amenity along with a huge slice of history and romance. The...
Alcatraz Island, California

Alcatraz Island, California

Imagine. You’re going to stay at a private island in sunny California. It has amazing wildlife and a fascinating history. What’s more, it’s not going to cost you a penny – your stay will be absolutely free of charge and even all your meals will...
Movie Locations: The Lady in the Van

Movie Locations: The Lady in the Van

I can’t even begin to describe to you that wonderful moment when I realised that Maggie Smith was going to play Miss Shepherd in Alan Bennett’s Lady in the Van. And a marvellous film it is too. For those who don’t know, it’s the (largely) true...
Love Locks & Eiffel Tower: New Orleans

Love Locks & Eiffel Tower: New Orleans

They say that writer Guy de Maupassant used to eat lunch every day at the restaurant atop the Eiffel Tower – because it was the only place in Paris that didn’t have a view of the thing. This ‘fact’ is doubted by my family as we once drove...
Locations: Game of Thrones

Locations: Game of Thrones

Dark Hedges is a stunning – and rather magical – parade of beech trees to be found in Northern Ireland and brought to general attention by its use as a location in the TV series Game of Thrones. This dark avenue of gnarled trees was planted in 1775 as the...
Ramones Museum, Berlin

Ramones Museum, Berlin

Way back in 1990, Flo Hayler started collecting Ramones memorabilia. He collected tickets and t-shirts, posters and pants. These were to form the basis of the Ramones Museum in Berlin. Yes, you’re right of course, the Ramones are mostly associated with their...
Grand Hotel Campo dei Fiori, Italy

Grand Hotel Campo dei Fiori, Italy

Here’s another seriously spooky hotel, this time the Grand Hotel Campo dei Fiori in the Italian Alps. The hotel was abandoned when tourism declined in the area. Since its abandonment, in the late 1960s, the hotel fell into a ruinous state. Furniture and decor...
Isle of Lewis, Scotland

Isle of Lewis, Scotland

The Hebridean Islands are well-known because of their incredible scenery, wild seas and astonishing wildlife.  The islands are largely unspoiled and the Isle of Lewis is no exception.  And if you want to baffle a friend with a trivia question, who do these three...
Tianducheng: Paris in China

Tianducheng: Paris in China

Paris is a beautiful city. Few people would argue with me there. But what exactly is the deal with reproducing wonderful places? Tianducheng is a suburb of Hangzhou in China and Paris has been reproduced – not very well – in a development that was built in...
Kunsthofpassage, Dresden, Germany

Kunsthofpassage, Dresden, Germany

Kunsthofpassage is a series of alleyways in the student district of Dresden. The area contains quirky bookshops and cafés – and unusually decorated buildings. One of the most famous is the one you see above. A series of drainpipes are displayed not only in an...
Lake Michigan: The Wreck of the Francisco Morazan

Lake Michigan: The Wreck of the Francisco Morazan

The wreck of the Francisco Morazan can still be seen just a couple of hundred yards from the shore of Lake Michigan.  Yet the ship floundered and was abandoned in 1960. The ship was built in 1922 in Germany and you can still tell today, looking at the wreck, that it...
Visiting Paris: Musée Édith Piaf

Visiting Paris: Musée Édith Piaf

Even though French iconic singer Edith Piaf died as long ago as 1963, most people would recognise her voice today. Even those who aren’t old enough to remember her will probably know this: And there is a private museum dedicated to her in Paris. It can be...
Bunce Island, Sierra Leone

Bunce Island, Sierra Leone

Bunce Island has a fascinating and rather chilling history. Today the island is deserted but in 1670 a castle was built there by a British slave trading company which became a hub for the slave trade. People from the west coast of Africa were kidnapped and shipped as...
Visiting the UK: The Cats of York

Visiting the UK: The Cats of York

York is a truly amazing place. It’s packed with history, ancient architecture, museums, parks … there are fabulous places to eat, the local scenery is unbeatable and it’s even a great place to shop. Bizarrely, you can also – free of charge...
Gnomesville, Western Australia

Gnomesville, Western Australia

There is a state in Western Australia called Dardanup and within that area is Ferguson Valley. There’s not much there, really. A timber mill was there back in Victorian times but it closed in 1929. In 1950 the town there was mostly destroyed by fire. Yet...
Lombard Street, San Francisco

Lombard Street, San Francisco

Lombard Street in San Francisco is one of those strange American sights that are so beloved of tourists. And it’s hardly surprising as it’s known as ‘the most crooked street in the world’. You can see in the photographs and videos below just...
Rab: Royal Rumpy Pumpy

Rab: Royal Rumpy Pumpy

Royal scandals tend to be a thing of the past these days but in the UK in the 1930s there was plenty of royal scandal to keep everyone entertained. The British papers tried hard to rise above these matters but the foreign press had a field day with the new king,...
Joe Cocker Meadow, Dresden, Germany

Joe Cocker Meadow, Dresden, Germany

It seems unbelievable to us today. It was June 2, 1988. Joe Cocker gave a concert in Dresden, Germany. That doesn’t sound too unusual, does it? A musician playing a public concert? But it was unusual when you realise that at that time, Germany was still a year...
The Ghost Town of Goussainville-Vieux Pays

The Ghost Town of Goussainville-Vieux Pays

If you’re flying to Paris and are just about to land at the airport, the chances are that you’ll be flying over the ghost village of Goussainville-Vieux Pays . When you’re read the story that led to this village being abandoned, you’ll be sure...
Brighton, UK: The Royal Pavillion

Brighton, UK: The Royal Pavillion

England abounds with eccentrics – people and buildings. And the Royal Pavillion at Brighton is so much a part of English culture that it’s only when I take a step back, and see it as a foreigner would, that I realise just how bizarre it is. Let’s...
Icelandic Phallological Museum

Icelandic Phallological Museum

So you happen to be in Iceland, in Reykjavik. And you see that there’s a museum ahead – it’s the Icelandic Phallological Museum. Do you go in? Actually, I suspect that the real question here is who thought about having a willy collection in the first...
Treetops Lodge, Kenya

Treetops Lodge, Kenya

Even if it didn’t have important historic associations, Treetops would still be a fascinating place to stay because of its location – – 100 miles from Nairobi in the Aberdare National Park. The hotel is the ideal place to view Africa’s...
Pont-en-Royans, France

Pont-en-Royans, France

There are many incredibly picturesque villages in France and Pont-en-Royans is an excellent example. You can see from the photographs how the brightly-coloured houses cling to the craggy cliff sides with the river running peacefully below. As you can see from the map...
The Reichenbach Falls

The Reichenbach Falls

Probably the most well-known waterfall in the world, Reichenbach Falls has a fictional hero to thank for its fame. For it is here that Conan Doyle’s detective, Sherlock Holmes, had his ‘fatal’ battle with his arch enemy, Professor Moriarty. It was...
The Fake House at Leinster Gardens, London

The Fake House at Leinster Gardens, London

Baywater is a lovely area of London with elegant terraces featuring delightful architecture. But next time you’re in London, it’s worth visiting Leinster Gardens because two of the houses there are not what they first appear to be. Numbers 23 and 24 are...
Hashima Island

Hashima Island

Seriously spooky, Hashima Island is also known as Gunkanjima or Battleship Island. At one time it was densely populated and busy – today it’s a ghost town. It used to be a mining community that first started in 1900 thanks to the Mitsubishi Corporation...
Bo-Kaap, Cape Town

Bo-Kaap, Cape Town

My dad was the most travelled person that I’ve ever met and he always maintained that Cape Town was the finest place he had ever visited. Bo Kaap is a fabulous area to explore. With Table Mountain forming its backdrop, the area has brightly coloured houses on...
Visiting the UK: The Mouseman of Kilburn

Visiting the UK: The Mouseman of Kilburn

I was still at school when I found out about the Mouseman. The school, which was quite posh, needed new furniture for the teachers’ use during assembly. I recall that the headmistress was very proud because he had purchased the furniture from the Mouseman....
Carrick-a-Rede Bridge, Ireland

Carrick-a-Rede Bridge, Ireland

Imagine it … about a hundred feet below you, heavy waves are crashing onto jagged rocks. Seabirds swoop at you. The wind is high. The only way forward is to walk across a fragile rope bridge swaying in front of you. The walk won’t be a long one, less than...
Balestrino Ghost Village

Balestrino Ghost Village

The movie Inkheart tells a fantasy story that features an abandoned village that was revitalised. Here’s the trailer. The village actually exists and it is abandoned. The film gives us some idea of what the village would have been like before it was abandoned,...
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