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Saturday, July 20, 2019

Three historic American resorts connect guests to their storied past

This is the first of a two-part series. Part two will be published in the November 2016 issue of the Fifty Plus Advocate. In 1740, a Native American chieftain helped lay out an east-to-west route through Great Britain’s Maryland and Pennsylvania colonies.

Cyprus offers history, culture and beauty

Women who live in a tiny mountain village sit together sewing lace tablecloths, which are famous for their beauty and fine workmanship. In a city not far away, diners at sidewalk cafes enjoy their fill of grilled pork, baked lamb and other local favorite foods. A white sand beach is the main attraction for people who are more interested in getting a tan rather than their fill of tasty treats.

Netherlands offers world-class charm and culture

World-class museums stand shoulder-to-shoulder with flower markets festooned by rainbows of color. People crowded into cafes and pubs chat, sip coffee and other beverages and watch the passing traffic, which consists of as many bicycles as automobiles. This is the setting in one of the greatest small cities in the world, which is the capital of one of the smallest countries in Europe. But anything that the Netherlands may lack in dimension – it’s about twice the size of Massachusetts – it more than makes up in diversity.

National Park Service celebrates 100th anniversary

If you are a fan of our country’s national parks, you’re in good company. More than 300 million people – about equal to the entire U.S. population – enjoy the National Park system every year. And 2016 is a special year, because the National Park Service is celebrating its 100th anniversary. The words “national parks” often conjur up images of soaring landscapes and dramatic terrain, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. Among the more than 400 units in the park system are smaller, lesser-known sites around the country that have their own special appeals. They include magnificent scenery, overlooked chapters of American history and intriguing learning experiences.

Colonial Williamsburg brings history to life in Virginia

As the pounding of the sheriff’s wooden staff calls the court to order, James Hubbard prepares to defend his client. He is an orphan’s guardian who stands accused of squandering his charge’s estate. Centering his neat wig and smoothing the frilly lace sleeves of his shirt, the attorney bows to the bench and begins to plead his case. This scene is repeated today in the same place where it occurred during the 1770s. That is when James Hubbard lived and practiced law in Williamsburg, at a time that the town served as the capital of the Virginia colony.

Exploring the island of Cozumel

A Mayan ruin   By Victor Block Much about the island says Mexico. Archeological sites hint of the rich Mayan civilization that once flourished there. Parts of...

Cheese, truffles and history: Treasure hunting in Piemonte

The platter was covered with what resembled small piles of leaves from a fall lawn raking. The brown, green and black heaps hardly invited sniffing, much less tasting. Yet sniff and taste I did.

Hitting the road for vacation? Think RVs!

The latest fad with the 50-plus generation is taking a recreational vehicle for vacation instead of getting hotels. It is a way of getting away from all the hustle and bustle of the cities and getting back to the small town scenic view. With more time available, you can take longer trips to see more of the country instead of flying over it and being rushed. You get to explore places you have only seen in magazines and on television. Being able to control your destination has become the ultimate trip. This is a way of testing the waters to see if you want to sell your house and be on the road full time.

Exploring the Czech Republic’s villages – Part 2

A view of the Czech Republic countryside Photo/submitted   By Victor Block Part two of a two-part series Last month, we visited the majestic city of Prague, one of...

Exploring the Czech Republic: Prague

Most visitors to the Czech Republic confine their stay to Prague, and with good reason. Known as “the city of a hundred spires,” although it’s actually decorated by nearly a thousand towers and steeples, it challenges the most magnificent capitals of Europe in its beauty, and boasts a history that stretches back over a millennium. In addition, since the Middle Ages Prague (Praha) has been recognized as one of the most vibrant cultural settings on the continent.