Author: Shane

Verdon Gorge: Europe’s Grand Canyon

The Verdon Gorge is known as “Europe’s Grand Canyon”. It is a 25 km long and 700 m deep river gorge that extends all the way from Provence to the Alps. The Verdon river has carved this dramatic gorge, named for the color of the water: an emerald/turquoise green color which is said to come from the floating rock particles and microalgae. The color is stunning, and the water is beautifully clear. The Verdon Gorge is the deepest canyon in France, and said to be one of the most beautiful natural wonders in Europe. For this reason, we didn’t...

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Amazing Day Trips in the French Riviera

The cities and towns of the Cote d’Azur seem to blend together, with no clear distinction from one to another. This makes travel between places easy once you pick a home base. For us this base was Nice and we took advantage of the many towns, beaches, and cities easily accessible in 10-30 minutes. Here are our votes for the best quick daytrips from Nice:   1) St. Paul de Vence St. Paul de Vence is worthy a quick 20 minute drive from Nice. As one of the oldest medieval towns in the French Riviera, this town has a...

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Avignon & Aix-en-Provence: Heart of Provence

Although Provence is full of charming little towns and villages to leisurely peruse, there are also some larger cities which are worth a visit: Avignon and Aix-en-Provence.   The Bridge to No Where: Avignon The historic center of Avignon is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is definitely worth a visit. It is home to the Palais des Papes, which is the biggest gothic palace in the world. It housed seven different popes in the 1300s, who were tired of the growing corruption in Rome and chose to relocate to Avignon. They built an impressive palace, garden and church,...

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How Guatemalan Coffee is Made & Other Foods

Guatemala is one of the world’s top exporters of high grade coffee, and the second highest exporter of coffee in general in Central America. So, it’s hard not to take part in the coffee culture while here. We therefore decided to spend a morning with a local farmer and a translator, and went into the fields where the farmer’s family has been growing coffee for generations. The family is now part of a cooperative, which helps the farmers share their coffee with the world while also providing them with the necessary loans for more plants or more land. We...

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Guatemala: Land of Volcanoes

Guatemala is the land of volcanoes, with 30 volcanoes in the country. Three of them are currently active, so we couldn’t resist getting up close and personal to at least one of these. Our hope was to go on a day or overnight trek to Acatenango, a volcano near Antigua which allows you to see its neighboring exploding monster, Fuego, up close: However, we were told Fuego might be quiet on the day we wanted to hike, so we went to visit a different volcano by the name of Pacaya instead:   Pacaya Volcano The Pacaya volcano is perhaps...

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