A tour of Dakar

All the way through high school French, whenever we talked about French Africa, we talked about Dakar. And every time we read a textbook chapter about Dakar, it was accompanied by a photo of the “Porte du Troisième Millénaire, whose name translates to “door of the third millennium.” It’s safe to say it’s pretty important! Built in 2001, it symbolizes the opening of Africa to a new millennium, and represents hope, communication, and unity. You can find it overlooking the ocean along the Corniche-Ouest, by avenue Malick Sy. The views of the ocean are incredible.


Into the Paris Catacombs

Once I found out that there were essentially secret tunnels underneath the city, filled with bones and other potentially creepy/cool things, I knew I absolutely had to see them for myself. Of course, for safety reasons, the French authorities don’t allow the general public to go snorkeling and exploring on their own in the catacombs. There is, however, a section that is open to people like you or me. I’ve been twice, so it’s safe to say it’s pretty cool.


Winter activities in Copenhagen

At the risk of stating the obvious, Copenhagen is pretty darn cold in the winter! Especially if you’re used to walking around outside most of the day. In the other places I’ve visited, I’ve spent large chunks of the daylight hours just walking around, getting to know the city, and taking pictures. In Copenhagen, I tried to do the same but I just felt so cold all the time! So I came up with a list of things to do in Copenhagen in the winter. A lot of these things you can do after dark as well, which is helpful since in late November in Denmark, the sun sets as early as 4 pm. These are things that will still give you a taste of this fascinating Danish city, but will also let you take breaks inside warm buildings and trendy restaurants.


Christmas Markets in Europe

In the last two weeks, I’ve been to Christmas markets in Paris, France; Stuttgart, Germany; Salzburg, Austria; Copenhagen, Denmark; and Barcelona, Spain. Every major European city, and I believe most of the smaller ones too, has its own Christmas/holiday market. Each one is a little different. Here are some highlights of the ones I saw.


One Day in Luxembourg

Luxembourg is a tiny country ruled by a Grand Duke, making it the world’s last Grand Duchy. The Grand Duke’s palace is in the center of Luxembourg city. It opens in the summer for tours. Unfortunately, my visit was in late November, so I wasn’t able to go in. On the bright side, November has excellent weather for drinking hot chocolate, which worked out perfectly since The Chocolate House is right across from the Grand Ducal palace.