Great Hikes near Woodstock Vermont

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Columbus Day weekend usually turns out to be the prime time for foliage in Central Vermont. Tourists from all over the world descend on places like Woodstock Vermont to enjoy the foliage and outdoor activities. Peak foliage, however, is subject to the vagaries of nature. Since you have to make reservations well in advance during [Read more …]

Mt Etna Italy

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Although Taormina is a pretty little town in Italy, we went there primary for its proximity to Mt. Etna. The 11,000 foot volcano not only dominates the northeastern part of Sicily, it also created it. As of the mid-17th century Catania was a large city and the 30-mile coastline between Catania and Taormina was a [Read more …]

Other Interesting Things to Do in Amsterdam

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This is part of a series of posts on Amsterdam written by guest contributor, David Gavenda. My month in Amsterdam gave me plenty of time to explore different sections of the city, partake in interesting activities (especially an annual garden tour), visit a number of secondary museums and most importantly, spend some time in my [Read more …]

A Return to Monhegan Island, Maine

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It has been at least 30 years since our first and most recent voyage to this artist and nature island in Maine. Monhegan Island, which attracts many artists over the summer, currently has 19 studios (only a few open on the day we visited) and is laced with hiking trails that climb most of the [Read more …]

Peggy’s Cove Nova Scotia and Its Lighthouse

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The drive from Louisbourg to Nova Scotia’s southern shore is no easy proposition. Although the scenic town of Peggy’s Cove (just south of Halifax) isn’t that far from Louisbourg as the crow flies, navigating it by car requires a very long (500 kilometer, 5 hour) drive. The only way to get from one town to [Read more …]

The Towns of Cape Breton Island

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The focus of our Cape Bretton trip was the Cabot Trail, the National Park and its trails. Towns, however, do make convenient evening and restaurant stops and sometimes have other attractions that can’t be found in nature. We stopped at three of the island’s primary towns. Cheticamp Cheticamp, a town at the Western entry to [Read more …]

The Natural Splendor of Cape Bretton Island

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As mentioned in our previous post, Cape Breton is the island at the northern tip of Nova Scotia. The island, and especially the portion of the Cabot Trail that encircles the highlands near the northern tip of the island (primarily the section of the trail that is in Cape Breton National Park) was our primary [Read more …]

Experiencing Bay of Fundy Tides

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The northwestern edge of Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley, along the Mina Basin, has a unique feature that makes it a particularly interesting destination–the largest tidal variations in the world. Although these variations differ depending on the alignment of the sun and the moon, they average 12 meters and can exceed 16 meters (over 50 feet) [Read more …]

Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley and the Mina's Basin

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Our next stop in Nova Scotia was the Annapolis Valley, a 150 km-long valley that runs along the Mina’s Basin, an estuary that is separated from the body of the Bay of Fundy by the mountainous Cape Blomidon. The region is notable for a number of reasons, including; It’s geology and microclimate, which makes it [Read more …]

Nova Scotia: At Last, At Last

We have wanted to get to this scenic Nova Scotia peninsula for decades. But despite having lived more than 20 years in Boston, it wasn’t until we moved to San Francisco that we finally got around to taking this trip. This introductory trip effectively took us three-quarters of the way around the peninsula (excluding only [Read more …]