Bucharest, Romania

Bucharest Turrets

Turrets on a Bucharest Orthodox church

 

We normally drive or take the train while traveling in Europe.  However, European travel restrictions (Schengen Agreement) dictated we get out of Spain as well as twenty-five other European countries and head for a country not part of this agreement.  We would be illegal aliens if we remained in Spain.  So we boarded our first ever European flight from Barcelona to Bucharest.
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The Road to Hana, Maui Hawaii

Limbs Gone Wild

The Road to Hana is a popular must-do attraction for many visitors to the island of Maui.  Guidebooks and audio tapes are available with descriptions of places to visit along the way, pinpointed by mile markers.  This is quite confusing as the mile markers start over three times along this 12 hour route.  Some tourists display the ‘Aloha’ spirit and take their time crossing the 50+ narrow one-way bridges, and navigating the twists and turns.  Others are in the rush-rush mode, making the trip to Hana memorable and challenging in numerous ways.
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Inverness, Scotland

Loch Ness

Our most northern stop in the UK was Inverness, Scotland.  There was nothing specific from a photographic or tourism viewpoint that brought us here.  We used Inverness as a base to drive even further north into the Highlands and dine in the town of Tongue.  Of course we also wanted to explore Loch Ness as another one of those tourist ‘must-see’ places.  The above photo was taken from a lunch spot we discovered on the much less touristy east side of Loch Ness.  On the west side, restaurants seem to be around every curve in the road, but on this side, we were just about to give up on finding any restaurant when we found a real gem with the view above.
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Isle of Skye, Scotland

Old Man of Storr Sunrise

For some unknown reason we only scheduled four days in the beautiful Isle of Skye, yet an entire week was spent in Edinburgh and a week in York.  This planning was a bit backwards in hindsight.  Much more time could have been spent in this stunning island countryside.  The one day available to hike to the beautiful and unique Old Man of Storr provided only very dumpy light (photography speak), so I turned around and explored other parts of the island rather than devote an entire day to a single spot.  The Old Man of Storr is the monolith in the distant background of the lead photo above.
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Westport, Ireland

coffee-shop(Click to Enlarge)

This is one of those lay-over locations or stops we scheduled.  We had traveled five hours from the last stop in Dingle, and had another five to go to get to Bushmills and the Giant’s Causeway at the northern tip of Ireland.  So we stopped for two nights in Westport, a city of about 5,500 people.  Finally in a bigger city, we opted for Indian food, and took my photographer friend along for his first ever dish of Indian cuisine.  With no real sights to see, we walked around the town, photographing the buildings and city life.
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Dingle Peninsula, Ireland

Dingle Sports Bar

Dingle was our base for exploring this well-traveled peninsula and its fishing villages.  Dingle seems to have the right mix of locals and good restaurants to serve the many tourists.  While we were there we were often rained on five or more times a day.  This peninsula is dotted with many smaller fishing towns, all having several nice pubs and restaurants.  Late into the evening we could hear what sounded like an entire bar singing Beatles songs.
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San Quirico d’Orcia, Tuscan Countryside

Val d'Orcia Church

We have all seen photos of the Tuscan landscape and the beautiful green or gold rolling hills, depending on the time of year.  We visited in the spring so all was very lush and green.  Photos of Tuscany were responsible for Italy being such a large part of our initial trip to Europe.  In particular, I was interested in the often photographed Vitaleta Chapel pictured above.   We stayed at a working vineyard and olive farm in San Quirico d’Orcia primarily for me to have easy access to this chapel and many other vistas.  As it turns out, the light was never quite right for photographing the chapel, but the surrounding area was still wonderful.

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