Tag archives for Europe

Michelangelo’s frescoes, painted in bright colors to be visible from the floor, took four years, tormenting the artist, who penned a poem complaining of his aching spine. Completing the ceiling in 1512, he returned 24 years later to paint the “Last Judgment” on the altar wall. Here are a few more fun facts about this High Renaissance masterpiece.

Falmouth sits in the center of the “Cornish Riviera,” England’s charming southwestern coastline, and the port is its lifeblood. Here are four ways to experience this seaside gem.

East Meets West in Berlin

It’s difficult to imagine what this city was like in the early 1960s, when the 87-mile-long Berlin Wall was intact and bristling with barbed wire and gun emplacements. Today, the wall has essentially been shattered into tiny bits, now scattered as souvenirs around the world.

Any child who has taken basic world history classes knows about Athens and its indelible contribution to Western civilization. But studying a place and its heritage is far different from actually being there.

Whether I’m whizzing down to Washington, D.C. or wending my way through Wallonia, traveling by train is by far my favorite mode of transport — especially when I’m in Europe.

National Geographic Traveler’s February/March issue is on newsstands now. Find out what’s inside…

The Radar: Travel Lately

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #NGTradar. Check back on the blog on Wednesdays for our roundups.

One of the few Central European capitals to survive the bombs of World War II, Prague stepped into the 21st century looking, more or less, as if it were stuck in the Middle Ages. “Tourism thrives in Prague because of its history. Her old towers, bridges, and churches tell a story,” says Karin Líšková, manager of Hotel U Zeleného Hroznu. “Visitors want to experience Prague as it was before, in the old times.”

Where Oslo Plays: Løkka

Oslo’s quirky borough along the banks of the Akerselva River, Grünerløkka (Løkka as locals call it) used to be a gritty industrial area. Now, it’s where the cool kids go to shop and play.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. (Photograph by Somkid, Flickr)

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. Photograph by Michael Sass, My Shot.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. Photograph by Alessio Mesiano, My Shot.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups.

Only river boats and barges are small enough to fit in the scenic canals of Brussels. Cruise ships dock in Antwerp (about 28 miles away) and Zeebrugge (69 miles), and both cities offer train service and bus transportation to Brussels. Here’s what you’re missing if you haven’t been to the European Union’s de facto capital.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. Photograph by Chris White, Flickr.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. Photograph by Poras Chaudhary, My Shot.

The upstart chic resort, complete with the inevitable martini bar and spa, may be taking root just about everywhere these days. But in Norway, the trendiest things going are the centuries-old farmsteads that have been converted into all-purpose Nordic getaways.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. Photograph courtesy Darren Vaughan, My Shot.

Our resident Scotland expert, Jim Richardson, has been traveling to the Highlands and Lowlands for more than 15 years — and after enjoying a few “wee drams” over the years, he’s become a discerning (and poetic) Scotch enthusiast. We asked Jim to tell us if he has a favorite whisky. And, as it turns out, he has far more than a few.

Spotted By Locals writer Igor Daems grew up in the suburbs of Antwerp, Belgium, and finally moved to the city center about four years ago. Since then, he’s become an avid fan of the city he thinks often, and unfairly, gets overlooked in favor of Bruges and Brussels. Check out Igor’s favorite things about Antwerp — and add your own.

Supercharged Swiss Wheels

Apply Swiss ingenuity and an active love of the outdoors to a landscape profuse with mountains, and you get the rechargeable Swiss electric bike.

Jim Richardson is a familiar name from the pages of both National Geographic Magazine and National Geographic Traveler. And if you’ve followed his career, you may have noticed his passion for Scotland (check out his newest piece, about the Inner Hebrides, in Traveler’s hot-off-the-press August/September 2012 issue). Traveler photo editor Krista Rossow interviewed Jim about photography and why Scotland remains his enduring travel muse. Here’s what he had to say.

The Radar: The top travel news, stories, trends, and ideas from across the web. Got Radar? Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTraveler and tag your favorite travel stories from the Web #ngtradar. Check back on the blog for our roundups. Today’s cover photograph was submitted to the National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest by Ashley Lowry. The magazine is giving away seriously spectacular prizes this year and the deadline is THIS Wednesday, so don’t miss your chance to win!