Posts Tagged ‘photo-essays’
Buenos Aires is filled with colorful street art. Everywhere you turn buildings have been tagged, and much of it has been elevated to an art form. You’ll find street art across the city, signed by the artists themselves. These images encompass bold graphics and painted characters, as well as classic typography and iconography. Some of the best street art can be found in two of B.A.’s trendiest neighborhoods: the up and coming San Telmo historic district and the stylish Palermo Viejo neighborhood.
Most people have heard of Zurich, the Matterhorn or Geneva. But St. Gallen? The name generally draws blank stares. Yet Switzerland’s northeastern capital is charming, foodie focused, relaxed, and blissfully tourist free.
I rode the train from Lucerne to St. Gallen, which turned out to be an incredibly scenic journey. It cut through green expanses of fertile valleys filled with grazing cows below big fluffy clouds in a brilliant blue sky, all surrounded by mountain peaks crowned with snow. Crossing rivers and curving past multiple lakes, this has got to be one of the best ways to see Switzerland, especially since traveling from one end of the country to the other doesn’t usually take more than a few hours.
Lucerne, located in central Switzerland at the foot of the Swiss Alps, is simply stunning. From the minute I stepped off the train and caught a glimpse of Lake Lucerne, reflecting snow capped peaks in its swan-filled waters—the city perched at its edge—I was smitten.
Nestled beneath the Alps in northern Italy’s Lombardy region, the beauty of Lake Maggiore is legendary. Here you’ll find a lakeside getaway filled with flowery villas and gardens, perfect for lazy days of aimless wandering. Boat rides and sunshine are obligatory. Seafood and relaxation mandatory.
As our plane followed the coastline up from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara, the aerial views made my heart skip a beat: it was all sparkling blue Pacific ocean lined with golden sand and white surf, leading up to hills tinged bright pink in the light of the setting sun. Flying over sailboats, palm trees, and the Santa Barbara pier gave me such a sense of happiness. And the views just kept getting sweeter, with the city piled into the hills as a backdrop to the ocean-front cliffs of The Mesa, tumbling right into the sea. California is definitely my kind of paradise. Moreover, I stepped off the plane to a balmy, sunny day—this is why I love California Christmases so much!
Zagreb? Where the hell is that? Words that I’ve heard countless times about the narrow alleys and side streets that lay hidden just outside of the regular tourist’s tunnel vision. If you ask the average person, they probably have no idea where Zagreb is. In fact, they probably have no idea where Croatia is, and the only Dalmatia they’ve heard of comes in the 101 variety. Zagreb is not the standard issue city. It does not drown in the web’s bucket list. Even the name sounds fairly strange and distant.
This is a living city first and foremost. You won’t see the roving, multicolored gangs of tour bus riders. Instead, you see Croatians living their lives. You see them lounging in the park with their friends, or enjoying the numerous free nightly music performances. You’ll bump into them as they flood the quaint main streets for happy hour, and you’ll stumble across them watching a free movie in an old town square while drinking wine and eating popcorn. And while the city has seen its share of war and bombings and death, the Croatian people are resiliently carrying it forward into the modern age. And while you can feel the history throughout the city, Zagreb belongs firmly to the future.
I love Zagreb for so many reasons. Off the beaten path and away from the tourist radar, Zagreb is refreshingly local. Still relatively inexpensive compared to the rest of Europe—and even Croatia—the city is filled with regal architecture, a gas-lamp old quarter where time stands still, and inexpensive hearty cuisine. I was charmed by Zagreb’s unpretentious attitude and abundant cultural pursuits, especially its unique museums, architecture, art scene, and live music scene.
Zagreb is a place I knew little about beforehand. I decided to head here to round out my tour of Croatia, which was deservingly beach heavy. Essentially, I wanted to see what Croatia was like away from the sea.
Zagreb, Croatia has become one of my all-time favorite cities in the world, equally rivaling my favorite Croatian city of Dubrovnik. I was pleasantly surprised at the loveliness of Zagreb’s cobblestoned old town, where time seems to stand still. In the old quarter, the gas lamps are still lit by hand every evening. Boasting friendly people, plenty of culture to go around, and both tasty and inexpensive food and beer, Zagreb is one of Europe’s best kept secrets.
Stay tuned for our Zagreb coverage, coming up all this week!