Tag Archives | Balkans

monasteries of Meteora

The mountains and monasteries of Meteora, northern Greece

“Suspended in the air”. That’s the meaning of Meteora. These monasteries of northern Greece live up to this translation, perching on rock massifs hundreds of metres above the valley floor, seemingly defying the forces of gravity. The history of the monasteries At the height of construction in the 14th & 15th centuries, some 24 monasteries inhabited […]

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returning home to the UK

Returning home to the UK: reflections

I can’t believe it. My month-long trip from Budapest to Athens is at an end. It’s been awesome. From the hospitality in Albania, to the Greeks who kept trying to overfeed me; from the architecture of Budapest to the “too cool for school” vibe of Zagreb. As I spend my first 24 hours after returning home […]

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Albania's UNESCO World Heritage Sites - Gjirokaster

Albania’s UNESCO World Heritage sites

If you’re a castle and ruins-aholic like me, then Albania’s UNESCO World Heritage sites are a dream. An unexpected hive of history; castles peak out over mountain ranges, Greek and Roman-influenced ruins face the Ionian sea. The settings are as memorable as the remnants of the buildings they’re famous for. I visited three of Albania’s […]

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Ljubljana castle

Ljubljana – the beloved boy next door?

If Ljubljana – meaning “the Beloved” in Slovene – were a man, he’d be the boy next door.  He’ll treat you like a Princess: buy your favourite wine, bake your guilty-pleasure cake for you; he’ll even take out the rubbish. You’ll rave to your friends about his overall wonderfulness and clean, kindly and thoughtful ways. […]

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Budapest to Athens

Greek, long division, packing, and my mum’s email needs: Budapest to Athens here I come!

Budapest to Athens: It’s only five days and counting until I shake off my Eastern Europe /Balkans virginity on my month-long solo trip. Several practical questions – beyond the emotional ones around the excitement of it all – are whizzing around my head as I count down the days to my departure. Why hadn’t a trip […]

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