26. October 2018

Hungary – Budapest

Buda and Pest After visiting my family in Romania, Tes and I spent a few days in Hungary’s capital Budapest. The 1.7 million metropolis formerly consisted of two cities, located west and east of the Danube river. One was called Buda, the other Pest. The largest spa town in Europe is, among other things, famous for its bathhouses and thermal springs. Incidentally, in a geotectonic view, the city lies on a fracture point of the earth plates. Therefore, the city (especially Buda) is rich in hot springs, which were already used by the Romans in the second century. In total, there are over 120 hot springs and the water is used […]
16. August 2018

Spain: Vinaros

Vinaros During our housesit, we lived about 15 kilometers away from Vinaros (30,000 inhabitants). Our finca was three kilometers from the nearest village, in the middle of orange and olive trees. The nearest neighbor was a few hundred meters away and we could enjoy an exceptional quiet. Especially at night, the little light pollution was clearly noticeable and produced the most beautiful starry sky of the winter. The dogs of one house sittungs… ..and the dogs of the other sit We also had to take care for a pigeon Vinaros offers, apart from a beautiful beach and a charming city center, relatively little for tourists. The most famous landmark is probably […]
15. August 2018

Spain: Girona

Girona – my favorite During our visit to Girona, we rented an Airbnb outside the city in a small village. There, we had a beautiful view of the surrounding hills and pleasant peace. To me, Girona is the most beautiful city in Spain so far, as it combines small-town flair with the possibilities of a big city (100,000 inhabitants). There is beautiful architecture from bygone times, narrow streets and a walk-able city wall, which leads over dozens of beautiful gardens. In addition, you can enjoy the view of the cathedral with snow-capped mountains in the background. Some would say that the city looks like a fairytale, others think of Game of […]
14. August 2018

Spain: Valencia

Valencia in a day Back in 2018, we did a day trip to Valencia from our home in Vinaros. We mainly figured, that one day is too little to explore the city of 800,000 inhabitants. So, we spent some hours in the city center and then decided to visit the Bioparc. To do so, we decided not to visit the “Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències” (Science and Culture Park), which includes the “L’Oceanogràfic” (aquarium). Although these two are the most famous landmarks in Valencia, they are located outside the city center near the port. We will visit them during another stay in Spain. The Cathedral of Valencia The inner […]
20. April 2018

Sint Maarten – Saint Martin

Sint Maarten or Saint Martin The last stop of our Caribbean cruise was Sint Maarten/ Saint Martin. The pronunciation changes, depending on which half of the island you are. After all, one side belongs to the French, while the other is Dutch. On the Dutch side, the sockets are American, on the French, they are European. In addition, the currents differ and you can pay with dollars or euros. Me feeding iguanas In the port The prices on the island There is an anecdote about the partition of the island: After the islands possession had changed for years between the French and Dutch (sometimes the English), people decided to divide the […]
19. April 2018

St. Kitts and Nevis

St. Kitts and Nevis St. Kitts and Nevis is an island nation with 56,000 inhabitants, has an area of 269 km² (104 mi²) and is one of the 12 smallest states in the world. St. Kitts (also known as Saint Christopher) is the more populous island, separated by a three-kilometer-long canal from Nevis (11,500 inhabitants across 93 km²/ 36 mi²). During the last ice age, the sea level was about 60 m lower and Nevis, St. Kitts, St. Eustatius and Saba formed a contiguous, large island. The distance from St. Kitts to the north-west island of Saba is about 60 kilometers (37 mi). Sint Eustatius can be reached after about 25 […]
18. April 2018

Saint Lucia

Saint Lucia Die Marigot-Bay St. Lucia is the world´s only country named after a woman (Lucia of Syracuse). The Caribbean island has an area of 616 km² (238 mi²) and is home to about 170,000 inhabitants. Ninety percent have African roots and mostly came to the island through slavery. It was only in 1979 that the island became independent and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The island’s export hits include bananas, flour and rice. The yellow fruits, however, have declined sharply as export goods and have been replaced by tourism as a source of income. Around 70% of the gross domestic product are from tourism. This branch is a […]
17. April 2018

Barbados

Barbados, my favorite At the highest point of the island The beach Barbados is a 430 km² (160 mi²) island with 280,000 inhabitants. Most of them have African roots and came to Barbados because of slavery. The island is made of limestone, so there are hardly any lakes, as the water seeps away. The country was ruled by the English until 1966, since then, the 30th of November is celebrated as Independence Day and National Day. The most famous persons of the country are the two RnB musicians “Grandmaster Flash” and “Rihanna”. In Saint Michael, where Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty grew up, a street was recently named after her – the Rihanna […]
16. April 2018

US Virgin Islands: Saint Thomas

Saint Thomas via cruise During our time in Ponce, we examined a cheap way to visit more islands of the magnificent Caribbean. After we checked flights, connections by sea and hotels, we booked a cruise as the cheapest and easiest solution. This way, we could visit five different islands within one week, had all meals included and a small, air-conditioned room every night. In general, the whole thing was extremely classy compared to the months in Ecuador and Puerto Rico.  So to speak: I initially had to get used to the warm shower. Our first port was on Saint Thomas, part of the US Virgin Islands. Leaving the ship A magnificent […]
12. February 2018

Ecuador: Tena – Amazon

Tena – the gate to the Amazon The observation tower in Tena Tena is a city with 20,000 inhabitants and located on the border to the Amazon. Most tourists come to the area to participate in guided expeditions to the rain forest. They offer tours between one and fourteen days and can also adjust to your individual needs. Otherwise, the most popular tourist activity is kayaking and you can see a lot of cars driving through the streets, packed with canoes. A snapshot of the city, on the right the island with the park The sights Unfortunately, there are not a lot of sights in the city. Mainly the “La Isla […]
11. February 2018

Ecuador: Mompiche

Why to Mompiche? Travel educates and broadens the mind, they say. In Mompiche, I learned a lot, especially about handling resources. But let’s start at the beginning: To hibernate outside of Germany, we searched for a house-sitting opportunity in a tropical country. The concept is, that a private person leaves his home to a sitter while traveling. In return for free accommodation, the sitter takes care of the plants and animals or whatever else is needed. To us, this was a nice experiment and it worked out perfectly. After applying to people around the world,  we decided to visit Ecuador and sit three cats for a Tasmanian author. She designed and […]
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