5 Things to do in Vaals, Netherlands

30 Aug

No trip to Europe is complete (for me) without a visit to my friend, P in Vaals (pronounced as Faals). Vaals is a really small European town and not on the typical touristy trail (at least not for Indians) but I visit it on every trip to meet with my friends P and J and now most importantly the adorable little M. But apart from spending time with them, Vaals also has some  interesting things to see and do. So here’s a quick guide on 5 things to do in Vaals if you ever find yourself in this beautiful small town in Netherlands.

Flowers at a roundabout, Vaals, Netherlands

Flowers at a roundabout, Vaals, Netherlands

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Photo Essay – Walking amidst rainbows at the Vintgar Gorge

23 Aug

Travels take you to many beautiful places and shows you many new sights – each vivid, unique and stunning in its own right. But occasionally you come across some places that are so stunningly perfect that you just conclude that it has to be a dream. And Vintgar Gorge situated in the Triglav National Park is definitely one such place.

Vintgar Gorge, Triglav National Park, Bled

Vintgar Gorge, Triglav National Park, Bled

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Customs of Europe – Geslaagd!

25 Jul

One of my favorite things about traveling is learning newer and unique customs / things about the places I visit. And one such unique Dutch custom that I learnt of recently is Geslaagd. I came across this custom in Vaals when I staying with my friends P and J. Generally walking around town I saw school bags, note books, purses and banners (with Geslaagd written on it) hanging from flag poles, trees, doors etc in some houses. For the life of me I couldn’t understand what this was for and thought it meant some sort of spring cleaning. But I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Geslaagd, Netherlands

Geslaagd, Netherlands

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Taste of Europe: Bled’s Kremna Rezina or a Cream Cake

5 Jun

No matter which part of the world you visit one of the most important elements of that visit is sampling the local food and cuisine. So much so that it warrants in-depth research and also a significant allocation from the travel budget. For me though, more than the food, its coffee and deserts. I have a major sweet tooth and no travel research is complete without a thorough analysis of the local deserts and a short list of “must haves” from the local ‘specialty stores’.

Bled Cream Cake at Hotel Park. Pic courtesy - Hotel Park website

Bled Cream Cake at Hotel Park. Pic courtesy – Hotel Park website

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Exploring the underground world of Škocjan Caves in Slovenia

19 Apr

Any trip to Slovenia is incomplete without a visit to one of the most impressive underground cave systems in the world – the Postojna Caves and the Škocjan Caves. While planning for our trip we read a lot about these caves and were quite intrigued by it. But since we had limited time we could only cover one of these two, and after some research, we decided on the Škocjan Caves.

Škocjan Caves, Slovenia

Škocjan Caves, Slovenia

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Photo Essay – Night Views of Dubai from “At the Top” of Burj Khalifa

18 Apr

I travel a fair bit for my official work and in November last year I had a chance to visit Dubai for our office offsite. As I had been to Dubai for a holiday once before, I had seen and done many of the typical touristy things. But my travels have taught me that even repeat trips to see the same sights can be fun – you can see things that you missed in the excitement of last time or try new ways of experiencing the same sights. And I tried re-experiencing “At The Top” in Burj Khalifa, but this time in the night and by learning more about this architectural marvel.

The Burj Khalifa, Dubai

The Burj Khalifa, Dubai

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Photo Essay: Spending a Day in Ljubljana

10 Apr

Our Slovenia travel chapter started with its beautiful capital city and the smallest capital in Europe – Ljubljana (“lyoob-lyAH-nah”). Interestingly Ljubljana is a city that does not have any world-famous monuments or attractions or a long or short list of to do’s. But it has many things to see and do and the best way to discover its secrets is via our favorite way – ditch the map and walk around aimlessly on foot.

Ljubljana from the Ljubljana Castle, Slovenia

Ljubljana from the Ljubljana Castle, Slovenia

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