Category Archive: Culture

A Dozen Gardens From Around the World

The days are getting longer, and with flowers blooming in the yard along with a few peeks of the sun in the sky, it’s a great time to be in Seattle. Spring is finally here! Since the flowers in my garden are not terribly impressive yet – things will be in full color in another few weeks – I turned to some of my blogger friends to get a take on some of their favorite gardens around the world. I selected a dozen of them, one for each month of the year, and hope you can work a visit into one of them during your next vacation. 1.Springtime tulips at Araluen Botanic Park, Western Australia Western Australia conjures up images of red desert, barren gorges and rugged wilderness, but half an hour’s drive from Perth we found Araluen Botanic Park. […]

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Travel for Library Lovers

If you’re a lover of books and literature, you probably already visit libraries when you travel. Whether it’s stopping off to do a little research or get an internet connection at a local library, or to visit a historically or culturally significant site, sleuthing out a library in advance of your travels is worth your time. And if you’re going to be in one destination or an extended period of time, you may be able to get a temporary library card giving you access to books and services for the time you’re there. For a book lover, that’s a big travel bonus. (If you’re looking for reading ideas, you can find some of my recommendations here.) I asked a few traveling friends to share some of their favorite ideas about libraries. The Long Room, Dublin: when Jedi knowledge meets monastic […]

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My Favorite Paris Museum

In a city as full of museums as Paris, you might think think it tough to choose a favorite.  After a whirlwind week soaking up as much as I possible could, and visiting more than a few museums, there were only a few Paris museums that made a lasting impression. The Louvre was vast and covered an extensive period of time.   But while I enjoyed it, the art on display – with a few notable exceptions – wasn’t really my cup of tea.  The Rodin displayed statuary that was lovely, but it didn’t offer the depth to really captivate me.  Although this museum would score a solid second on my list of favorites in large part because of the gardens that surround it.  The Centre Pompidou made me smile with its architecture and exhibits, the Delacroix was nice, the Quai […]

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Understand the Whirling Dervishes of Turkey

For many travelers to Turkey, sampling the Turkish cuisine rates at the top of the to-experience list.  After all the basic sightseeing is finished, and visitors move to some of the cultural experiences that the country has to offer, watching the whirling dervishes usually ranks high on the list. Often erroneously considered a folk dance troupe or some sort of trance inducing dance, the dervishes are more aligned with religion and philosophy than with entertainment.  The ritual dancing is based on the teaching of the Persian philosopher and poet Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi who, along with his son, founded the Sufi Order.  Sufis are part of the Sunni sect of Islam, and Mevlana Rumi’s teachings emphasized tolerance and patience, not revolutionaries, and their belief is that unification with God will occur through the constant movement of the universe. Okay, we […]

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