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Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
Near the base of the landmark Rialto Bridge, the historic Rialto Market is well worth a wander. Seek it out in the early morning when it provides an authentic local experience (and awesome social-media ops), with fishmongers hawking their fresh...
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Venice, Metropolitan City of Venice, Italy
Stride down the Canal Grande like Venetian aristocracy as your gondolier shows you the beauty of palaces like Palazzo Babarigo adorned with Murano glass mosaic, before entering the labyrinthine backwaters of the city. Hop off on street level and...
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Piazza del Duomo, 20123 Milano MI, Italy
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is more than a shopping center, it's a place for coffee, drink and dessert. Even more, in the center of the shopping center, there is a mosaic art of bull, which is said that if you spin your heel on the ball three...
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Calle Lunga Santa Maria Formosa, 5174/B, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy
One of the things Venice is best known for, after its gondolas and canals, is enchanting handmade masks—and mask shops abound in the city. One standout is Gottardo Stefano, where you can find any type of mask you might want: from feminine...
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Cannaregio, 1045, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
Gold is their specialty....purveyours of gold smalti to kings, sheiks and popes since the 1880's. Bling takes on a whole new meaning while visiting the Orsoni Factory, on the Island of Murano, a short traghetto ride from Piazza San Marco....
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River Tiber, Italy
Rome is one of my favorite cities and I never tire of the architecture and the beauty.
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Piazza del Colosseo, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
No matter how many postcards you've seen of Rome's iconic Colosseum, you just don't get it until you pass beneath its crumbling arches. Built by Emperor Vespasian in 72 C.E., the huge amphitheater held 50,000 spectators and marked its...
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Piazza di Trevi, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
Fontana di Trevi is, as it should be, one of the most visited landmarks in Rome.Seeing it is worth the blind stumble throughnarrow stone streets and alleyways. But do so at night (and in the rain, if possible)to be rewarded with the stunning sight...
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Viale Monte Nero, 46, 20135 Milano MI, Italy
We finally found it! Officine Del Gelato Milano; a modern, absolutely delicious gelato parlor. They had us coming back (three times in one day) until we had tried every flavor—including every kind of gelato popsicle. It was a guilt-free treat and...
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Piazza del Duomo, Milano MI, Italy
The historic and modern center of the city, the Piazza del Duomo (the square surrounding the cathedral's base) remains a popular meeting place, hangout and hub of Milanese life. Local vendors setup shop (selling fresh coconut in the summer, toys...
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Isabellalei 6, 2018 Antwerpen, Belgium
One of my favorite things about Antwerp and Brussels is the wide selection of chocolate and tea houses. Move over Swiss Miss...
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1410 Waterloo, Belgium
Just south of Brussels is the town that most people think is somewhere in England - Waterloo. This is the place where Napoleon got his short little bottom kicked by the British and Prussians almost 200 years ago. Waterloo is well worth the visit...
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Mons, 7000 Mons, Belgium
A friterie is to a Belgian is what McDonalds is to an American! Scattered around the country you often come across these friteries which sell as they main item "frites". They're also called "pommes frites" since they are made of potatoes. Just...
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Ghent, Belgium
I went to visit Ghent in March. The warm spring weather brought students to the canal for lunch and socializing. I'm surprised Ghent isn't as popular as Antwerp or Bruges, it has such a funky, youthful vibe.
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Square de l'Atomium, 1020 Bruxelles, Belgium
Step right up and see the amazing Atomium! This monument was built for the 1958 World's Fair in Brussels. It never achieved the recognition of Paris' Eiffel Tower, but has its own special iconic status in Belgium.
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Piazzale Napoleone I, 00197 Roma RM, Italy
Encompassing early 200 acres of rolling parkland, Villa Borghese is Rome's verdant heart and everyone's favorite place for an afternoon walk. The vast gardens are criss-crossed with picturesque paths, where visitors can meander past ancient...
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3-5 Place Saint-Pierre, 75018 Paris, France
While wandering the back streets of the fabric district in Monmartre, I came across a delightful notions shops full of every kind of button imaginable. The neighborhood around the base of the Sacré Coeur has many more interesting vintage, sewing...
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1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur, 75007 Paris, France
Small enough to get around without being overwhelmed, the Musée d'Orsay is a favorite stop in Paris not just for its size but for its collection of Impressionist, Postimpressionist, and art nouveau art. Perfectly set in the center of the city, on...
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Paris, France
My wife and two friends were tired of "museums" so they mistakenly decided to go shopping while I went to the Rodin Museum alone. It was breathtaking, the flowers were all in full bloom, the art on display inside was rare and beautiful, but the...
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6 Parvis Notre-Dame - Pl. Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France
A devastating fire on April 15, 2019, has closed the interior of the cathedral to visitors. Plans to rebuild and reopen the structure are being made, but at present, visitors are not allowed near the site.
Fora first-time visitor to Notre Dame,...
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Pont des Arts, 75006 Paris, France
Strolling over the Pont des Arts, in spite of the tourists, and the cliché, bereted accordian player busquing for a Euro... even with the lovers buying locks to place on the fencing, and the nasal wail of the Bateaux Mouches loudspeakers floating...
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24 Place de la Madeleine, 75008 Paris, France
Here at the très chic Boulangerie Fauchon, on the Place de la Madeleine in the heart of Paris, the loaves can look almost too good to eat. In French, the idiomatic equivalent for 'window-shopping' is "leche-vitrine," which literally means...
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Île Saint-Louis, 75004 Paris, France
Just east of the magnificent buttresses of the Cathédrale Notre Dame, across the Pont Saint-Louis, lies an island sanctuary in the middle of this chic, bustling city: Île Saint-Louis. The one-way streets are narrow, with views of the Seine River...
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Jardin Tuileries, 75001 Paris, France
Flanked by three Rodin statues, the glass and stone Musee de l'Orangerie is home to paintings by the greatest modernists - Picasso, Monet, Cezanne... There are only two floors in this white-walled museum. The second floor consists of two oval...
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Père-Lachaise, 75020 Paris, France
This beautiful Parisian cemetery is on the Boulevard de Menilmontant and next to the Metro station Philippe August, in the 20th arrondissement. Upon entrance to the main gate, grab a map so not to get too lost. The art work on the memorials and...
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17 Rue Sainte-Croix de la Bretonnerie, 75004 Paris, France
Serendipitous light on a September afternoon--a rainbow arcing over the Eiffel Tower and ending at the gold dome of L'Église des Invalides in central Paris. (Under that dome, emperor worship continues--Napoléon I lies buried in a crypt in the...
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1495 Villers-la-Ville, Belgium
In 1146 a dozen monks and some lay brothers, with the blessings of St Bernard (not the dog!) headed to what is now Belgium and founded the abbey. It had been neglected and then revitalized during its second golden age in the 1800s where some of...