Slovakia: Zdiar
September 3rd, 2016

Zdiar

Zdiar is a small village near the norther boarder of Slovakia in the foothills of the High Tatras. I decided to plan a trip here because I really needed a logistically interesting solo-trip and a good walk in the mountains. I had never heard of this area before, but man was I not disappointed. Look at it!
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France: Afternoon in Paris
September 2nd, 2016

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My last afternoon in France was spent in Paris. I took the train from Bayeux and arrived with no plan in mind other than that I would walk around avoid the urge to do a grand tour. I managed to take the Metro a few stops closer to the river, which I was nervous about for some reason. I may still be re-living the embarrassment of getting stuck in the ticket gate here ten years ago, only to get pushed through by a very annoyed Parisian commuter.
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Normandy: Utah Beach
September 1st, 2016

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On the second day of my trip, I set out for Utah Beach, the place my Pop-pop landed on D+8, the start of his long tour in Europe. Even though Bayeux is considered to be one of the main towns from which to access the Normandy Beaches, Utah Beach proved to be much farther away (by bike) that it seemed. To account for this I elected to take my bike on the train to Carentan (most of the way) and cycle to the coast from there. The only issue was that the first train didn’t leave until noon and I, being me, rented the bike out at 8am sharp.
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Normandy: Bayeux Catherderal
August 31st, 2016

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The Bayeux Cathedral dominates the center of town and it’s really striking every time it comes into view.
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France: Bayeux – Normandy
August 31st, 2016

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I only stayed in Caen for the morning because my main destination was the farm more charming town of Bayeux. Bayeux has a long and interesting history: the first Norman King (and ancestor of like every single European monarch), takes his wife from Bayeux, the priceless Bayeux Tapestry is housed here, and during WWII it was the first town to be liberated during the Battle of Normandy. It’s also extremely cute.
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France: Caen – Normandy
August 30th, 2016

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Caen, in the north of France, was my first stop in Normandy. I took an overnight fear here from Portsmouth, which ended in me sleeping on a cold hard floor despite booking a (so-called) reclining chair. Between the expensive English train, the ferry, and the bus to Caen from the coastal port, I had myself seriously wondering what in the world I was thinking.
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England: Punting in Cambridge
August 27th, 2016

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The best part of Cambridge is the punting. An old-timey activity that’s still popular today, punting down the River Cam in a long wooden racing boat is the perfect way to spent an afternoon. The river is full of professional punters punting along groups of tourists, but if you are brave enough you can rent a punt on your own and self-punt.
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England: University of Cambridge
August 26th, 2016

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Cambridge is a medieval university town that, like many places in England, has Roman and Viking roots, but came into it’s current state during the Middle Ages (starting in 1200 when the University was founded). It’s located North East of London in Cambridgeshire on the River Cam.
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England: Hitchin Lavender Field
August 7th, 2016

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When I was visiting England years ago, we definitely stopped at a lavender farm. I don’t think it was this one, which is less than an hour out of London by train, but I was eager to relive the experience. The best news is that this field, at Hitchin Lavender Farm, allows picking!
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Ireland: Castletown House
August 3rd, 2016

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On our last day in Ireland, we were super hungover and didn’t have time to get to Glendalough (again), but we found a suitable nearby sight to visit: Castletown House in Kildare. It’s a manor house from the 1700s that was lavishly decorated (mostly) by Lady Louisa, the young and creative woman of the house.
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