French Riviera Part 2: Medieval Wonders

JANUARY 2008… While planning a trip to the French Riviera, it’s definitely not enough to just visit the major cities such as Nice, Cannes or Monaco. The gems are often those found along the way and a self-drive is the best way to see it. Doing a self-drive on the French Riviera is quite easy… Continue reading French Riviera Part 2: Medieval Wonders

French Riviera Part 1: Nice

JANUARY 2008… The French Riviera could be mistaken for another country altogether if one did not pay attention in Geography class. What’s the difference? For one, being much farther south than capital Paris, the sun shines throughout the year. More importantly, it’s on the coast and you get to see the Mediterranean Sea! An unexpected… Continue reading French Riviera Part 1: Nice

Paris Part 2: Hidden Gems

JULY 2010… While the sights mentioned so far are prominent and unmissable, the Sacré-Cœur or Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris is a different story. For starters, it is tucked away out of sight from the main road. I probably wouldn’t have found it if not for the friendly Parisian who led me there.… Continue reading Paris Part 2: Hidden Gems

Paris Part 1: City of Lights

JULY 2010… It would seem preposterous to try and introduce Paris because, com’on, who doesn’t know Paris, right? Home of the Eiffel Tower, city of lights and the land of romance. But what you might not know (or noticed) is that Paris has a very low-lying cityscape, with buildings in the city centre no more… Continue reading Paris Part 1: City of Lights

Barcelona: Gaudí’s Playground

NOVEMBER 2006… My Barcelona trip was dominated by one name, Antoni Gaudí. I have chosen to dedicate this post to him, not because he’s the only attraction in Barcelona (he accounted for 60% of my itinerary maybe), but because he left me with the deepest impression. Park Güell, a public park designed by Gaudí. A… Continue reading Barcelona: Gaudí’s Playground

Venice: A City Like No Other

OCTOBER 2006… Our last stop in Italy was none other than Venice. Venice is really a lagoon of 118 islands, but you’d never realise that unless you checked it out on Google maps (which happened to be what I did). Kudos to the city government for a magnificent job linking up the various islands with… Continue reading Venice: A City Like No Other

Florence: A Charming Scene

OCTOBER 2006… If Rome left you a bit overwhelmed, Florence will be a welcomed change. Compared to the relentless crowds of Rome, the Florentine scene had a more laid-back charm. Not to mention it was another bounty of Renaissance art and sculptures. The story of a cathedral, a tower, a river and a statueThe skyline… Continue reading Florence: A Charming Scene

Vatican City

OCTOBER 2006… One unique attraction of Rome is the existence of an independent country within its borders. Yes, you read right. Probably the most famous example of a country within a city (and the only one at that), Vatican City is also the smallest country in the world at approximately 44 hectares with a population… Continue reading Vatican City

Rome: The Living Archive

OCTOBER 2006… “All roads lead to Rome”, as the saying goes. And “when in Rome, do as the Romans do”. The fact that these phrases still exist today is testament to the influence of the Roman Empire. Even after its heyday was over, the Roman Empire left behind a treasure trove of architecture – some… Continue reading Rome: The Living Archive

Cape Town Part 3: The Garden Route

DECEMBER 2005… This is the epic road trip to take if you are in Cape Town. A near 200 km scenic route tracing the south-eastern coast of South Africa starting from the town of Mossel Bay about 400 km east of Cape Town to Storms River on the other end. Most travellers drive themselves on… Continue reading Cape Town Part 3: The Garden Route