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Europe travel

LONDON – I don’t know this city as well as I’d like, but I found a great new spot in the eastern-central part of town. The Montcalm at Brewery City is a fun, polished and unique property near the Barbican and Moorgate tube stops. It’s in what functioned as the Whitbread Brewery for more than 200 years, and it’s got a lot of charm. You walk into the facility through a giant archway that once formed the entrance to the brewery, past iron gates with a polished gold sign. The lobby isn’t large but there are beautiful, fresh flowers (they’ve ... continue reading →

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I had the honour of attending a British Travel Writers Award ceremony in London last week, at which Belgium tourism officials had a moving tribute to folks who fought in World War I. The 100th anniversary of that terrible, terrible war is coming up next year, and there will be plenty of opportunities to learn more about Canadians and Americans and British soldiers and others who died for their country. It’s also the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion during World War II. And a Canadian company is making it easy to remember the occasion. Baldwin Verstraete, President Verstraete Travel ... continue reading →

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LONDON – A sunny November day in this city is a glorious thing. I had the good fortune to be out and about the other day and explored a bit of south London for the first time, wandering the glorious south bank of the Thames from Westminster Bridge to Tower Bridge and back again. I knew they had done some work down this way but wasn’t prepared for the fabulous light I had for photos or for the joys of one of the great urban walks on the planet. Not only are the views amazing of Westminster and Big Ben ... continue reading →

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SORRENTO, ITALY – I love this part of Italy. We pulled into Sorrento on our last full day of our remarkable Silversea Cruise in the Mediterranean. A lot of folks headed to Capri or Positano for day excursions. But I’ve had the pleasure of visiting both on nicer days in summer so opted to stay close to the boat to get packed and visit the town of Sorrento, which sits high on a dark bluff of rocky land high above the water, facing Naples. It’s nowhere near as pretty as Positano, which clings to a cliff as if for dear ... continue reading →

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CRUISING THE MEDITERRANEAN WITH SILVERSEA – The Sicilian town of Taormina is one of those places that struck a bell when I saw the name. But I had no mental image of it. My cruise ship, the incredible Silversea Silver Spirit (I miss it already) had it listed as a potential excursion during our 8-hour stop in Sicily the other day so I checked it out on google images (what did we do before google, I haven’t a clue) and thought, Wow. Then I got there and thought, “Double Wow.” The name comes from the Greek words for bulls head, ... continue reading →

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