Architecture-focused travel

Hidden Lisbon

Fado music, saudade and more in Portugal's slow-to-reveal capital.

The slightly dirty tile sidewalks welcomed us as we left our hostel to begin our first day in Lisbon. The magic in this city was palpable from the get-go. As we followed the trail of ...

Columbia, South Carolina: study in contrasts

The state's capital is steeped in Confederate history and contradiction.

South Carolina is a state of contradictions, and nowhere is this more apparent than in its capital. Last June, Kristin Morris, the Nickelodeon’s marketing manager, summed up contemporary South Carolina’s dichotomy, noting: “We’re a progressive ...

Vamos a Baja Sur's Todos Santos

Make the hour drive from Cabo to see what this pueblo magico's all about.

“Be careful,” said the sixtyish snowy-haired gentleman with a matching white beard, weather-beaten face, gray twinkling eyes, and a wry smile hinting at some private little secret. “Before you know it, you’ll be looking to ...

Tour de Belgium: Sax and the saxophone

Music-themed explorations in Brussels, Dinant and beyond.

Last year, Belgium celebrated the 200th anniversary of the birth of the inventor of the saxophone, Adolphe Sax. His birthplace and important milestones occurred in the Wallonia (French-flavored) part of the country. It’s his inventions ...

Cheap fun in artsy L.A.

A weekend of free concerts and exploring the Los Angeles Museum of Art.

Zip, chug, or plod your way up the 405 for a long weekend clustered around LACMA, the Los Angeles Museum of Art. Friday Sneak out of work early on a Friday, or take the day ...

Daytrip to the Salton Sea

DIY tour of Salton wildlife refuge, Slab City, Salvation Mountain & more.

Crunching fish bones. Foul-smelling water. Skin-scorching sun. It may not sound like an enticing adventure, but in fact one of the most interesting and unexpected getaways to be found in Southern California is a day ...

L.A. in a day (by train)

Make it a Metrolink day trip and see Olvera Street, MOCA, and more.

If you like variety, follow me to an L.A. experience that will challenge your senses – not your purse. The walking exercise on this day trip approximates six miles; I took all day, but you ...

Welcome to East Jesus, CA

Up the road from Salvation Mountain, miles from anywhere.

Overlooking the Salton Sea in the shadow of mature Ironwood trees rests a man still much loved. The former “mayor” of East Jesus, a fenced community of free-roaming, ever-rotating artists, musicians, scientists and builders located ...

Finding the roots of American music in North Louisiana

As a former musician myself, I shake my head sadly at musicians who think they’re getting the folk zeitgeist of a given genre just by listening to records. You learn folk music by listening to ...

Laguna Beach: summer means art fests

Check out Pageant of the Masters, Sawdust Festival and Art-a-Fair through the end of August.

If you want to add some art to your summer, consider heading up to Laguna Beach. A July visit here brought me within walking distance of three major art festivals: the Sawdust Festival, Festival of ...

Modern times in one of the world's hot spots: Israel

I was in Israel when three teenagers in yeshiva – Jewish seminary – had just been kidnapped. As I left the country, they were discovered to have been killed, which touched off a firestorm between ...

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