Travel / Europe

Helsinki, Finland

Finnish flavors, friendly folk.

Helsinki, Finland, is considered by many to be the “gateway to the East,” dividing Scandinavia from Eastern Europe. Indeed, it spent time as both as part of the Kingdom of Sweden and as part of ...

Wild, traditional Faroe Islands

This Nordic island chain spurs the visitor's imagination.

Most Americans probably don’t know where the Faroe Islands are. They’re a small island chain between Iceland and Scotland, speaking a language derived from Old Norse and Western Norwegian dialects. If anyone's heard of the ...

Georgia (the country)

Offbeat finds, budget prices, rich cuisine and culture, no tourists.

Google “Georgia,” and you are much more likely to get recipes for peach pie than to learn about the unique ex-Soviet republic where wine was invented and a special language and culture survived a thousand ...

Bulgaria in Translation

The wonders of scented toilet paper and much more.

“Wind of Change” by the Scorpions was on Bulgarian radio again. I listened while staring out the window at Sofia’s graffiti-speckled buildings on the taxi ride back to my downtown apartment. The next song sounded ...

A City Divided: Nicosia, Cyprus

Dusk. Empty street. Barbed wire. Bombed-out buildings. These are my first memories of Nicosia, Cyprus. Cassie and I came to Cyprus for the week of Kurban Bayramı, a religious holiday. We were both English teachers ...

Dubrovnik, Croatia

"I hate Dubrovnik," my friend Amila hissed. "We go there every year. To us Bosnians, it's boring. All the tourists. Too expensive. I hate it." Perhaps. But to this American, no place is more epic, ...

If You Get My Continental Drift

Your Mattness: Who decides what are continents? Why is Greenland not a continent? It is bigger than the island/continent of Australia and has more people than Antarctica. How can Europe and Asia be one continent? ...

The Coldest Winter: A Stringer in Liberated Europe

The Coldest Winter: A Stringer in Liberated Europe by Paula Fox. Henry Holt and Company, 2005; 144 pages; $18. FROM THE DUST JACKET: In 1946, Paula Fox walked up the gangplank of a partly reconverted ...

Sour Pickle Soup

In the aftermath of World War II, small Jewish communities came to life again in Eastern Europe. The Jews who rebuilt them had survived the Holocaust by using aliases, escaping concentration camps, or fleeing to ...

Help me get to Europe by boat.

Hi, Matt: I am a fearful flyer, and I heard there are ships that you can take from the West Coast through Panama and on to the East Coast and Europe, which is where I ...

Roma street musician in Helsinki