We started our 11-day Egyptian adventure with two whirlwind days in Cairo - the first we spent exploring the city of Cairo, and the second we immersed ourselves in ancient Egypt, on the outskirts of Giza and inside the Great Pyramid itself. We hired a private guide both days to understand the important historical contexts and also to maximize our short time amongst the mind-boggling sites and locations.
For our first official trip of autumn, we decided to spend a long weekend in the Bordeaux region of France during its annual harvest, or vendanges. After pushing through a gruelling weekend of work meetings and presentations in London (balanced out by a luxe, zen-like stay at the new Nobu hotel in Shoreditch), we jetted out of Gatwick at dinner time Thursday, landing in Bordeaux two and a half hours later.
The Greek Isles are peak Eurosummer. Though we've spent time in the islands each summer since moving to Europe, we decided to take ten days in August to revisit some of our favorite spots with Erin's brother Mason and his friend Pete, welcoming them to Europe on their semester abroad.
We visited Formentera, the smallest of the Balearic Islands just off of Ibiza, only a few weeks ago. Despite not having any unallocated vacation days left, we missed it as soon as we left and decided to go back, to work remotely and take a full week to explore the island in a more low-key fashion than we usually do. Since we've already blogged about our last trip, we decide to write up a quick travel guide of our favorite beaches, restaurants and activities. Formentera is not for all-inclusive resort lovers - it does have perfect, soft, sandy beaches, but accessing them is more adventurous than easy. It doesn't have night clubs or party boats - go to Ibiza for that. However, if you are into a bohemian vibe, Caribbean waters with delicious seafood, Spanish and Italian cuisine - Formentera is the best summer destination in Europe.
When we heard that the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series would be making a stop in Switzerland, we immediately purchased tickets, hoping to get as close as possible to the divers making the 90 feet vertical plunge from a Swiss mountain viewpoint. We hightailed it out of Luxembourg on a quiet Friday in July, and arrived to Sisikon on the shores of Lake Lucerne in about 5 hours.
In the midst of an historic heat wave, we headed to London for a four-day work trip, which consisted largely of practicing even hotter hot yoga, consuming various Pret a Manger and Marks & Spencer takeaway items in our hotel bed and hanging out with friends in too loud but very chic London hotspots. Once we finished up our short work week, we woke up at 3am on a Thursday with a plan to take the train from London Blackfriars to Gatwick ariport for a 6am flight to the Algarve region of Portugal.
Since moving to Europe, we've heard whispers about Formentera. Rumor had it, it was a hippie antidote to Ibiza, where Bob Dylan lived in a windmill in the 60s, where Bob Marley performed concerts and where pirates roamed before that, where the water is as bright and clear as the Maldives - a place where day-trippers come and go (emphasis on the go). It all sounded too good to be true. We decided to explore it ourselves, along with cousin Jake on his first trip abroad. Our love for the Balearic Islands is evident - as we got married in Majorca last year - so we eagerly hopped on a plane in Cologne, Germany and jetted to Ibiza - the jumping off point for our Formentera adventure.
Throughout our travels in Europe, we have developed a special connection with Spain. We first visited in 2008, starting in the north in San Sebastian and making our way south, hitting Barcelona, Valencia, Granada and Sevilla. After moving to Luxembourg, we continued our Spanish explorations every few months, and held our wedding in Majorca last summer. To continue getting to know the country more intimately, we jetted off for a 5-day weekend in the famed Costa del Sol.
To celebrate the Luxembourgish holiday of Whit Monday (we are still not clear on what this is), we decided to hightail it out of town and fly to Ischia, a volcanic island in the Tyrrhenian Sea, just off of Naples. To make the most of our 4 day trip, we booked a 7am flight out of nearby Brussels, and woke up at 3am to drive a couple hours north to the airport.
Nearly 15 years ago, we had our first real international travel experience together while studying abroad in Florence, Italy. Since then, Tuscany has always held a nostalgic place for us. For our first big trip of spring, we decided to do a roadtrip in Tuscany, to check out hill towns and some of the secondary cities in the region.
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