places to return to
Collected by Connie J. Tritt
2961 Kinderdijk, Netherlands
When waterways in the Netherlands freeze into glittering paths, overjoyed residents take to the ice. Visitors can buy or rent a pair of noren (traditional long-blade skates) to glide across town or take part in one of the country’s dozens of...
811 06 Bratislava, Slovakia
This spot has been occupied for thousands of years as a central point to the region, even before the Bratislava or Slovakia even existed. This castle was first built in the 10th century, and saw it's own experiences of different rulers, different...
Hviezdoslavovo námestie 132/1, 811 02 Bratislava, Slovakia
A cultural centerpiece of Bratislava. You might have seen this building in a few movies, although the "scenes" were meant to be cities like Vienna. Regardless, it's a beautiful building with loads of history behind it that's still in use today...
Hviezdoslavovo námestie 188/6, 811 02 Bratislava, Slovakia
Located in a square named after him, he was a Slovak poet, dramatist, translator and for a short time member of the Czechoslovak parliament. The square is a beautiful walk as you make your way to the National Theater.
Old Town, Slovakia
I mainly stopped off in Bratislava to take an afternoon break between Vienna and Budapest, but Bratislava Old Town really surprised me. Old Town was filled with street art and statues. This street performer was imitating a bronze statue found near...
Walking around the historic downtown area of Bratislava, I was pleased to come upon this little piece of clever utilitarian art. Any city planner can decide where to place a manhole cover on the street. But it takes someone with a little foresight...
Herengracht 427, 1017 BR Amsterdam, Netherlands
Exploring Amsterdam aboard a canal boat is an iconic way to see the sights, with myriad tours and cruises plying the 65 miles of waterways that lattice the city. From many spots you can join simple, hour-long cruises with narrators describing...
2961 Kinderdijk, Netherlands
Hop on a bus in Rotterdam and you'll be transported to the past. Around 1740 about 19 sturdy windmills were built in Kinderdijk outside of Rotterdam. They have been well preserved to the present day and are even listed as a Unesco World Heritage...
Dam, 1012 JS Amsterdam, Netherlands
The central hub of downtown Amsterdam is Dam Square, and it’s been at the heart of the city’s history since the 13th century. Today, the open-air public space is ringed by shops and restaurants and packed with people, including street...
Denkmalstrasse 4, 6002 Luzern, Switzerland
I was forewarned that this monument to the slain Swiss soldiers killed in France was deeply moving, and that Mark Twain had called it "the saddest and most moving piece of rock in the world." I still wasn't prepared for how heartwrenching it was....
On a sunny spring afternoon, the slope below the ruins of the castle in Heidelberg, where 'sheep may safely graze'...almost absurdly picturesque. One of my most vivid childhood memories is of visiting this castle with an 'uncle and auntie'--close...
Neuschwansteinstraße 20, 87645 Schwangau, Germany
Few sights encapsulate the magical feel of the Bavarian Alps like Neuschwanstein Castle. The impressive towers, vast halls, and mountain-top setting bring out your inner child, transporting you back to a time of bedtime stories and...
Domkloster 4, 50667 Köln, Germany
August 6th, 2004 As a non-religious person, I am still a big fan of church architecture. Its hard to get more iconic than the Cologne Cathedral. If you visit and arrive from the train station, you are dumped out directly beside it. Climb the...
50679 Cologne, Germany
My wife and I just returned from our annual trip to Europe to visit Christmas Markets. Our first stop was Cologne, Germany. In researching Cologne several months ago I read about the Hohenzollern Railway Bridge, which crosses the Rhine into...
Budapest, Vámház krt. 1-3, 1093 Hungary
The Great Market Hall in Budapest should be any visitors first stop in order to get acquainted to the people, goods and grub of Hungary. The market is one of those strange places that caters to both locals and tourists alike without losing its...
Budapest, Rezeda u. 9, 1118 Hungary
A huge dolomite rock rising up from Hotel Gellért at its base marks one of the earliest inhabited parts of Budapest. The citadel atop the hill was built by the Austrians in the mid-1800s to better control the unruly Hungarians after...
Budapest, Szentháromság tér, 1014 Hungary
Fisherman's Bastion was built in the late 1800s on Buda's Castle Hill not to provide protection, but rather as a lookout point—and this fairy-tale castle site, with its seven spired towers representing the seven tribe of Magyar (Hungarians)...
Budapest, Széchenyi Lánchíd, 1051 Hungary
Nothing's more romantic than strolling across a bridge with a beloved, but this bridge means more than just amor—Széchenyi Chain Bridge was the first structure across the Danube in Hungary, built in the mid-1800s and, as a suspension...
Budapest, Kossuth Lajos tér 1-3, 1055 Hungary
The splendor of this neo-Gothic parliament building—the third-largest parliament building in the world—is obvious from the outside, but consider these facts: This place has 691 interior rooms, 10 courtyards, 88 statues of Hungarian...
Budapest, Pesti alsó rkp., Hungary
The 60 pairs of iron shoes lined up along the promenade on the Danube River's east bank are a part of the Shoes on the Promenade Holocaust Monument. Conceived by film director Can Togay and created in period style by sculptor Gyula Pauer, the iron...
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