Verde que te quiero verde

The first stanza of Federico Garcia Lorca’s poem ‘Romance Sonámbulo‘  (‘Sleepwalking Romance’) translates: Green, how I want you green Green wind, green branches The boat out on the sea The horse on the mountain Written by the 20th century Spanish poet, the poem was arguably inspired by a European landscape and context, an azure Mediterranean sea and […]

Spain Without a Map: The Matarranya

I pull the car to a screeching halt, and hop out to take in this moment. After an hour or so of fairly uneventful driving from Valencia heading north, the landscapes begin to reveal the first of many medieval hilltop villages and I capture a few shots with my camera before continuing on. A short […]

May The Cork Be With You

Olive oil, wine, and cork.  Lots of cork.  I know of few places whose story can be so thoroughly woven together by and distilled down to such spare components. Portugal’s Alentejo region is these things and more. But trying to describe this region beyond these finite products is for me a futile exercise. As with […]

Between the Grime & Sublime in Morocco’s Sahara

“I don’t think this guy is coming.” My watch marks a quarter to eleven, as we stand atop a rocky plateau and a series of crumbling stairs that lead down to a crude wooden pier. Below us, the lagoon of Naila, and beyond it, a sea of pink sand dunes. And beyond that, the tumultuous […]

Get Back – 15 ways my heart aches for Andalucia

Something’s afoot in Andalucía, Spain’s deep south.  First it started with the discovery of an Almohad-era Muslim Hammam in one of Sevilla’s most iconic tapas bars.  Then, just last week in the nearby town of Utrera, reports came in that archeologists had unearthed one of the largest and best preserved medieval Jewish synagogues in the […]

Where’s Oualidia?

About 45 minutes into the drive south from Casablanca, the landscape starts to change. Fertile agricultural land gives way to firm red earth and barren rocky soils. Waist-high stone walls of marine limestone punctuate the empty rolling hills. You turn off the new tollway for the old coastal road, beginning at the unattractive port town of Jorf […]

Birding is Boresome and Other Myths

Let this be an ode to the non-tactile senses. To the joy of looking and seeing, the richness of listening and hearing. To being still long enough and staying put long enough to enjoy some of the world’s subtleties. About 15 years ago, I had burrowed my way into the professional world of travel. In […]

Sicilia Orientale: A Nature Walk

Newsflash: I’ve been scouring Southern Italy of late and to be completely frank, I’ve got it bad for Sicily….really bad. So bad that my family and friends are convinced I’m about to end up married to the mob. Magari! Someone recently said, ‘if Sicily were a song, it would be ‘amore’…” and who’s to argue […]