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Across the divide – a visit to the former inner German border

Follow the bend in the road, then walk for around 100 metres. If I hadn’t seen the satellite photo a few minutes earlier I’d have had no idea where to look. Beyond the roadside ditch wild flowers were swallowed up by the long grass, and only an occasional car broke the calm of an afternoon […]

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Lübeck, York and the Baedeker Raids

What links the German city of Lübeck, a well-known guidebook and the several of England’s more attractive cities? Wandering around Lübeck recently I was struck by the way the city has been so comprehensively rebuilt since the end of the war.  As with much of central Europe Lübeck was not spared the ravages of war and […]

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Taken for a ride: the price of top tourist attractions

  People travel thousands of miles to see the world’s top tourist attractions. When they arrive they are hardly likely to be deterred by an overpriced entrance ticket. With this in mind, is it reasonable for tourism chiefs to charge any amount they can get away with, or is there any benefit in providing a […]

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Germany: the best of Europe without the crowds

Ask people where they want to go on their European holidays and if they’re not heading to the beaches of the Mediterranean they’ll most likely tell you about Paris, London, Barcelona or Venice. Some may head east to Prague, Krakow or Budapest. Yet despite being the most populous European country (excluding Russia) Germany hardly ever […]

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Cakes of Europe – a photo tour

It is often said that the best way to get to know a country is through its cuisine. With this in mind I was determined to sample at least one cake in every country through which we passed in our recent rail journey. Even when we only used a country as a transit stop (as […]

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Europe by train: why a rail pass doesn’t make sense

If you’re planning a rail trip in Europe you’ll probably need to decide whether it’s worth buying a rail pass or getting individual tickets as you go. Choosing the wrong option can leave you heavily out of pocket. While arranging a recent trip from Rimini in Italy back to London it soon became clear that […]

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