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Summer 2015

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Finse, 5719 Finse, Norway
Finse, an easy-to-miss railway stop high in the mountains on the popular Bergen-to-Oslo train route, draws hardy urbanites year-round. The town offers access to some of the most remote and beautiful alpine hiking territory in southern Norway...
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79868 Feldberg, Germany
The Black Forest's largest mountain, Feldberg, has all the amenities you'd expect from a mountaintop destination. There's a ski resort, a wildlife museum and even a backpacker hostel, but visit in the late autumn/early winter and you can actually...
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Prinsengracht 263-267, 1016 GV Amsterdam, Netherlands
If you are in Amsterdam, you must visit the Anne Frank House, which is located on the Prinsengracht Canal. It was in this "Secret Annex" that the young Anne Frank wrote her world-famous diary while hiding in occupied Holland. Visitors are allowed...
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Platz am Kaisersteg, 12459 Berlin, Germany
Hannes is a friendly German guy who speaks perfect English, and his boat, suitable for 12 people, provides the perfect setting for a half-day tour of Berlin. The private boat tours can be focused around one of four different themes, and Hannes has...
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Titisee, 79822, Germany
In the shadows of the Black Forest, Lake Titisee is a scenic viewpoint not far from Feldberg mountain. Alongside Seestraße, boats are available for hire during the warmer months when the glacial lake isn't frozen over. The town of Titisee-Neustadt...
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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...
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Am Sandtorkai 36, 20457 Hamburg, Germany
Stretching for 1.5 kilometers within the HafenCity quarter, the Speicherstadt is the world’s largest integrated complex of warehouses. The district comprises a series of warehouses built on oak piles rising from canals dug deep enough to allow...
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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...
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Bonn, Germany's former capital, is a small place and everything is accessible in only a few minutes. Locals love to ride their bikes and the city offers an amazing network of parks that seem to be connected. You can ride alongside the Rhein river...
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Albertbrücke, Dresden, Germany
Certainly the Baroque buildings of Dresden’s Altstadt district are must-sees, as is funky Neustadt area, but don’t shortchange yourself by missing out on some low-key local favorites. Case in point is the Dresden Flohmarkt (Flea Market) held every...
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Wiehre, Freiburg, Germany
While walking through the Black Forest, we took a path that lead up to a clearing, offering this view of houses nestled into the hillside. As soon as we reached the top of the hill we saw that there were also huge rainclouds headed our way. We...
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60487 Frankfurt, Germany
My favorite area in Frankfurt is Bockenheim, northwest of the town center … of course, I’m completely biased as this was my old neighborhood. Home to Frankfurt's Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Bockenheim is vibrant and lively. The cafés,...
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Winterfeldtstraße, 10781 Berlin, Germany
The fresh fruit and vegetable market near Nollendorfplatz is a great place to spend a Saturday afternoon. One of the largest weekly markets in Berlin, you can find fresh fruit and veggies from local producers as well as flowers, meats, and...
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Grünberger Str. 75, 10245 Berlin, Germany
The weekly flohmarkt (flea market) in Friedrichshain's Boxhagener Platz is a popular spot where locals meet up for shopping, drinking, or just a bit of fun each Sunday. While the Mauer Park flea market gets most of the tourists, this one is far...
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Scandinavia
Even though Smögen is said to be one of the most popular fishing towns, a Swedish friend of mine tells me it still feels like a secret, even for them. These beautiful cozy and colorful fishing huts line the pier with a rocky coastline in the...
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Mariehamn, Åland Islands
“Åland has a long maritime history so you want to try to get out on a boat if you can. I like to take visitors on the Galaesen Albanus, a replica of a wooden 1904 ship that cruises the archipelago. If you go out on a 4-hour route or longer, they...
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Rosendalsvägen 38, 115 21 Stockholm, Sweden
It really doesn’t get more eco-friendly and organic than dining on freshly baked bread and pastries at Rosendals Trädgård Kafé and Bageri. Their breads are baked with biodynamic flour from the Saltå Kvarn mill in nearby Järna, and their dishes are...
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Jussi Björlings allé 5, 103 91 Stockholm, Sweden
Centrally located in Stockholm, the King's Garden is a lively urban garden/park/plaza that connects the harbor with one of Stockholm's main shopping districts. It contains a series of "outdoor rooms" including a formal entrance, fountain with...
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Folkungagatan, Stockholm, Sweden
To while away time, you can go people-watching and vintage shopping in Stockholm’s answer to New York’s SoHo—South of Folkungagatan, called “SoFo” on Södermalm ("Söder" to locals). This busy bohemian district boasts some of the edgiest cultural...
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457 40 Fjällbacka, Sweden
The picturesque fishing village of Fjällbacka is a photographer's delight. Red wooden cottages sit chock-a-block along the narrow streets around the tiny harbor. Boats at anchor are reflected in the serene waters, and local ferries ply the channel...
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Sankt Annæ Gade 29, 1416 København, Denmark
You can see the black and gold spiral steeple of the Church of our Saviour, or Vor Frelsers Kirke, all over Copenhagen. It's not until you are standing beneath it you realize that golden spiral is actually a staircase—on the outside. If you are...
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Scandinavia
I can remember being a kid at summer camp and never wanting the day to end. Those that know little of Scandinavia are fascinated by the idea of short days in the winter and long days in the summer. As the long summer days stretch into infinity,...
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0553 Oslo, Norway
My favorite Oslo memory was shopping at their Sunday flea market. During the week the neighborhood is alive with locals shopping at boutiques, sipping their morning coffee at one of the many cafes or simply walking their dogs through Birkelunden...
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Flåm, Norway
If you find yourself in Southern Norway in August, keep an eye out for wild raspberries. These particular ones were enjoyed on a walk near Flåm but we spotted lots of them on our trip from Oslo to Bergen.
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Napapiiri, 96930 Rovaniemi, Finland
Napapiiri, FINLAND -- It's usually a place that needs no address. All the Brits come here with their kids for Christmas and I did the same, too. Do you know who lives around here?
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Norra Esplanaden, Helsingfors, Finland
At midnight in June and July, Helsinki glows. Here, AFAR's founders stroll the Esplanadi, a grassy park and cobblestone walkways bordered by two avenues in the heart of the city, after a dinner at Restaurant Gaijin (www.gaijin.fi). In the day,...
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Töölö, Helsinki, Finland
Rent a bike and grab Helsinki's bike pathways map to create a custom tour. There are a few major loops and many junctures to jump from one loop to the other (i.e.,'green loop', 'town loop', etc..) Plan to be out for a couple of hours. The ride is...
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00101 Helsinki, Finland
In Paris, we're spoiled with bakeries on every corner, reeling us in with the sweet perfume of butter and sugar that wafts onto the street as we pass. In Helsinki, locals should feel fortunate to have Kauppatori, the city's market square where a...
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Jyväskylä, Finland
As the son of a Finnish mother I was lucky to spend my summers growing up in this magical country. A country that has thousands of lakes where the water is so clean you can drink it like bottled water makes for special place. Last summer I spent a...
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Southern Finland, Finland
Foggy yet captivatingly so even in the dead of winter. Wonderful place to just walk around, especially if you've had your fill of the city.
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Nieuwezijds Kolk 19, 1012 PV Amsterdam, Netherlands
Biking through the streets of Amsterdam is a must. It is such a great way to explore the city and how all the locals get from place to place. I rented bikes from a place called Hotel Scooter--they rent both Vespas and Bikes. The service here is...
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Prinsengracht 323, 1016 GZ Amsterdam, Netherlands
Grachtenfestival is a week-long outdoor classical music festival held every August in Amsterdam. World-famous musicians, ensembles and new talent perform in locations around the city. The festival's grand finale, the free Prinsengracht Concert, is...
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Museumstraat 1, 1071 XX Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amsterdam’s State Museum reopened in 2013 after a decade of renovations, and it is oh so worth a visit! Weave your way through the museum's vast assemblage of historic art (there are over 8,000 pieces!) to check out works from Dutch masters...
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Singel, 1012 DH Amsterdam, Netherlands
Since 1862, fresh flowers and plants have arrived by barge from the Dutch countryside to Amsterdam. While this assemblage of flora still shows up daily, it comes by van, not boat, to the Bloemenmarkt, the world's only floating flower market. Here,...