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Guardians of The Medieval Past: Nine Hill Towns of Central Italy

Aug 30th, 2019 | Dr Jeni Ryde

Perched precariously on rugged hilltops and cliff faces, Italy’s remote medieval towns often sit in splendid isolation, boasting extraordinary views of the pristine surrounding landscape. Generally built for defensive purposes, the stone and masonry walls, sturdy gates and watch towers which typify these towns have survived virtually unchanged since the...

Modernism in Barcelona: Movers and Shakers

Sep 20th, 2018 | Dr Jeni Ryde

No other architectural style has influenced the face of Barcelona as much as that of Modernisme. Over 2000 buildings can be attributed to the style or contain elements of it in this city. Antoni Gaudí is the architect of the period most associated with Barcelona due to his innovative designs,...

Portugal: Secrets Unveiled

Jun 6th, 2018 | Dr Jeni Ryde

Portugal’s status as a minor European power today belies its former greatness as the administrator of a huge empire, stretching from Brazil to Macau. Gaining independence from Spain in 1139, this outward-looking kingdom fomented the Age of Discovery; its fleets discovering the New World under Christopher Columbus in 1498 and...

10 great ways to experience Lisbon

Oct 20th, 2017 | Dr Jeni Ryde

Our tour leader Dr Jeni Ryde takes you through one of her favourite destinations – Lisbon.   [caption id="attachment_5417" align="alignleft" width="783"] Rembrandt, Pallas Athena, circa 1655[/caption] 1. Calouste Gulbenkian Museum Spend a morning in the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, one of the best private collections of art in the world, not...

The Best Travel Books on Spain

Jul 11th, 2017 | Dr Jeni Ryde

Spain’s remarkable history makes it a compelling destination for travellers. Its origins go back to at least the 11th century BC, when Greek and Phoenician settlers first encountered indigenous Iberian tribes. As the Roman province of Iberica, Spain was the birthplace of the emperors Trajan and Hadrian, before becoming a...

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