Hello!

Earlier this month, I was fortunate enough to visit the tiny country of Luxembourg as part of a longer trip to a few countries in Europe. I took a 45 minute train and bus ride to a small town called Vianden in the north of the country, where you can find the Chateau de Vianden, or the Vianden Castle.

The view of the castle as I was walking down the hill back into town

I chose a good day to come – there happened to be a medieval festival happening at the castle the week I was in town, which really brought the restored time-period architecture to life. Pictured here is a dueling knights show!

I also got to try my hand at shooting a crossbow – I definitely need some more practice with this. My aim was not the best…

Check out this supposedly medieval era carousel ride! The operator needed to hand crank the wheel for the seats to start moving. There was way more than I can fit here, but the festival also had a glass blower, many stands selling handmade goods and sweets, medieval dancers and music performances, and even a hawk you could pay 2 Euro to hold!

Here is a model of what the castle would have looked like in 1643. In the 1800s, the castle was essentially reduced to ruins, as pieces were sold off for money, but it was restored to its former glory in 1983, which is how you see the castle today.

Overall, a very satisfying day. Luxembourg in general is such a beautiful country (apparently, 30% of the country is covered in forest), and Vianden had just the right amount of quaint small-town feel for a day trip out of Luxembourg City.

Until next time,

Attrace

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Did you know that the waves in the San Francisco Bay play music? Well, that’s what the waves on the edge of the Wave Organ located in the Marina District are supposed to do. In fact, there’s an elaborate stone “organ” set up with pipes that go down under the water. When the waves and wind are just right, they lap against the pipes and create some kinds of melodies. Hearing about the Wave Organ, I really wanted to visit and hear what it was all about. Of course, it just so happened that the day I went, the wind was a bit too strong and the waves not strong enough, which meant not much besides a few whistles were coming through the pipes. Next time!

A waving photo adventure:

It makes sense while in Sacramento (which does happen to be the capitol of California) even though I still think it’s weird) to visit the state capitol. The California State Capitol offers detailed and free tours of the capitol building every hour. While the general consensus is that it doesn’t get so busy that you have to show up that early, the day I was there, there were people turned away from the tour because it was too many people, so … just saying.

While I certainly don’t remember all the details about the green House and the red Senate and all the reasons why there are so many counties in this ginormous state, I did find interesting that there multiple attempts to move the state capitol to different cities around the country, but eventually a law was put in place that the capitol will be in Sacramento and so nobody has tried to move it since!

A stately photo adventure:

Happy Birthday Mamie!

Located on the west end of Old San Juan, El Morro is a huge fort that essentially goes right out into the Atlantic Ocean. The walls on this massive fort are 140-feet high and up to 15-feet thick. Dating back to 1539, this is said to be the oldest Spanish fort in the New World. El Morro’s lighthouse is the oldest light station on the island that’s still in use and with it’s help, it’s kept many countries and their conquerors from attacking the island by surprise. While walking around inside the fort, you kind of forget where you are because the stone walls and floors are just so thick. Then you walk near the edge and look out either onto the ocean or just the massive green field on the one side of the fort and realize, wow you are really high up and there are just so many levels to explore on this giant fort!

Read about our other Puerto Rican adventures here: fajardovieques beginningsvieques beachesvieques eatsvieques goodbyesan juan sightingssan juan san cristobalsan juan bacardisan juan la fortaleza • san juan yellowsan juan coastal roadsan jaun escambronsan juan palomas

A San Juan photo adventure: