Author: Allan Kissam

Enjoying Solvang with Children

Has your child ever started off a family vacation day with a grudging go-along, devolving into hand tugging and whining? If planning for children activity stops along the route, then everyone can have a good time in Solvang, California. Perhaps the Solvang attraction ideas below will help. The average child attention span at age five is approximately 15 minutes. In Solvang, during those 15 minutes, it is possible to see a lot and jump between planned child entertainment stops. Even better is these stops are adult-friendly, too. Solvang is two hours by car from Los Angeles, and 45 minutes...

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Venetian Gondola Ride In Channel Islands Marina

We arrived at the public dock of Channel Islands Harbor Marina in Oxnard, California, and I stepped aboard my personal yacht. It was mine for about ninety minutes – a flat-bottomed, black Venetian rowing boat look-alike, complete with gondolier who wore a traditional blue-striped shirt. Shortly, a bottle of locally produced Ventura red wine appeared, and a box of pizza from Fresco II on the wharf. Lunch while on a row around the canal to tour the rich abodes, and possibly famous ones of the area. My gondolier was Mark Schooling, owner of Gondola Paradiso, and nearly a twenty-year...

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Birmingham And Montgomery, Alabama

Writing about visiting Birmingham and Montgomery, Alabama, with merging history and contemporary times in mind, brought up the quotation by Joss Whedon – “Half of writing history is hiding the truth.” This isn’t happening in Alabama, as its history offered is forthright and exhibited everywhere. This place is full of United States history. In the same way we admire courage in signing the Declaration of Independence, the story in Alabama comes out of similar display of courage and convictions. The parts about what to see on tour, to avoid sugar coating it, are mostly vestiges of murders, Ku Klux Klan...

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Go to Czech’s Moravia Region

In this last of three articles about the Czech Republic (see Prague, then Kutna Hora trips), we move on from Brno’s top-tier comforts to the south Moravia wine region of Czech Republic. The picturesque countryside becomes smaller villages built around agriculture. The region is a favorite of neighboring peoples’ of Europe for hiking and bicycling through old vineyards and chateau with cellars dating back to the 13th century. Registered here are two World Heritage UNESCO sites, the Palava Landscape Protected Area and the Lednice-Valtice Landscape Complex. This latter area is the Garden of Europe because of the landscaping and...

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Go to Kutna Hora and Czech Republic

“Go to Prague and Czech Republic” discovered the food, local sites, and fine hotels in the capital city of the Czech Republic. The stay at Prague got everyone on the local clock, plus we had a fascinating day trip to Melnik and the Lobkowitz Castle with its antique furnishings, restaurant luncheon of wild boar with dumplings, and wine tasting. This current article continues the adventure, transitioning through Kutna Hora and on to Brno in the southern part of the country. Kutna Hora is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is the filming location of numerous motion pictures. Its St....

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Go to Prague and Czech Republic

Most vacationers to Europe nibble around the edges. At the center of Europe is the Czech Republic, with its historic Prague and a countryside perfect for vacationing. Starting this series of articles with some recent history provides a reason for going to the Czech Republic. Prague, the capital city, and Brno, a major interior city, suffered only limited fighting during World War II. Missing out on the bombing and destruction means this city is not a Disneyland-like reconstruction of what once was. The architecture and sites really do date before the 10th century. So, follow General Patton’s path to...

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