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Entries Tagged as 'tourism'

French Vacations: Conformity and Jammed Roads

July 20th, 2017 · No Comments · France, tourism, Travel

This is odd. When the French take vacations, they nearly always take them in late July and August, and they overwhelmingly take them in their own country. Which means those of us in the south of the country, where the dependable sun is, can expect a major influx of visitors from the north choking the […]

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Barcelona and a Love-Hate Relationship with Tourists

June 26th, 2017 · No Comments · Barcelona, tourism, Travel

No, it’s not just your imagination. Many of the 1.6 million residents of Barcelona can be a bit abrupt. A bit impatient. A bit aggrieved. Those conditions can be the product of decades and decades under the thumb (in their telling) of the Spanish capital, Madrid. More recently, it has been about the inundation, over […]

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London, where King Cash Has Been Overthrown

May 4th, 2017 · 1 Comment · London, tourism, Travel

I must have missed this. Some time over the past year or two London has become a post-cash society. Yes, a few holdouts can be found, mostly among immigrant-run businesses that don’t like the idea of credit cards. Such as the Chinese noodle house on Wardour Street, in Soho. A pot of tea had already […]

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Go to London, See a Show

May 3rd, 2017 · No Comments · London, tourism, Travel

That is what a person does. You go to London, you eventually make your way over to the West End and settle in at one of those grand old theaters and let someone sing and dance at you for two or three hours. We carried out that plan perhaps too aggressively.

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Our Camino: A Postscript

April 13th, 2017 · 2 Comments · Pilgrimage, Spain, tourism, Travel

We completed the five-day Camino de Santiago pilgrimage yesterday, and celebrated by having dinner twice in about five hours. Walking 13 or 14 miles a day is enough to work up an appetite that can be acknowledged without fear of gaining weight. So there is that. Thinking back, I failed to mention, over the past […]

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Day 5 of Our Camino: Our Triumphal* Entry into Santiago … and the Botafumeiro

April 12th, 2017 · 1 Comment · Pilgrimage, Spain, tourism, Travel

*By “triumphal” we mean stumbling past the sign that read “Santiago”. So, Day 5 of the Camino de Santiago, the condensed, 73-mile version of a pilgrimage that can be 10 times as long, for the minority who start walking in distant lands, and often is about six times as long when starting just north of […]

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Day 4 of Our Camino: The Killer of a Pilgrim Is Sentenced

April 11th, 2017 · No Comments · Pilgrimage, Spain, tourism, Travel

The Camino de Santiago is a public event that passes through some of the most remote parts of Spain. The miracle is that the pilgrimage is so little touched by crime, especially given the surge in participation over the past 20 years, crossing the 275,000 mark in 2016, with women making up almost half of […]

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Day 2 of Our Camino: Dealing with Other Pilgrims

April 9th, 2017 · No Comments · Pilgrimage, Spain, tourism, Travel

If Day 1 of our Camino de Santiago was about getting to the other end, Day 2 was about getting comfortable among the other pilgrims. It is a diverse group. Statistics compiled by church officials in Santiago de Compostela, in northwest Spain, suggest half the pilgrims are not Spanish … that Germans are the biggest […]

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Day 1 of Our Camino: Slow and Steady Does It

April 8th, 2017 · No Comments · Pilgrimage, Spain, tourism, Travel

(Above, clockwise from top: Admiring a huge and ancient tree; distance markers scrawled on a bench; the official markers, noting correct direction and kilometers left before Santiago; Taking a break in a farmer’s outbuilding. The sign hanging, above, invites pilgrims to rest as long as they keep the area clean and tidy.) This may be […]

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On the Eve of the Camino de Santiago

April 7th, 2017 · No Comments · Spain, tourism, Travel

Tomorrow morning, the three of us begin our walk on the Camino de Santiago — the best-known of the Christian pilgrimage trails to Santiago de Compostela, a cathedral city in northwestern Spain. At the moment, we are in a bustling little town named Sarria, 110 kilometers (68 miles) east of Santiago. Sarria is the handiest […]

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