Corvallis, OR, US
I lived in Portugal 20 years ago and Lisbon was a city of which I have many fun memories. I'm FINALLY getting back for a visit in a few months, so I'm trying to remember the old (like CENTURIES old) faves, as well as check out all the new things which have appeared in recent years (hello vegan sushi and drag queen cooking classes!). Staying in a 5th floor walkup with no elevator, so I'll be sure to work up an appetite for eleventy million pastéis de nata.
This place is special to me because… it’s an outstanding beautiful place. Sintra is full of extravagant palaces, romantic gardens and parks, beautiful castles. Here we find nature, trees, culture, peace. Amazing place to go for a walk or hiking. And to look for inspiration!
Weehawken, NJ, US
This place is special to me because it's where we go on vacation every summer to visit my mother-in-law, who moved to the town of Carvoeiro over 20 years ago. Drawing this map, I kept thinking of all the wonderful reasons I love it here. The rocky cove beaches, the amazing azulejos (tiles) covering the outsides of buildings and insides of churches, delicious fresh fish (grilled sardines!), the scent of eucalyptus trees up on Monchique, where you can refill your water bottle directly from the spring, the beautiful doors everywhere, the crystalline turquoise water and deep blue skies, the curious cork trees halfway stripped of their bark, (and shops that sell everything made of cork), the dolphin sightings, the delicious pastry called pastel de nata (custard cups...think flan pie!), the fabulous soaps I bring back, the hill towns and medieval castles. The soulful fado singing. The fields of crooked almond trees, and almond liqueur. The piri-piri hot sauce that I'm obsessed with! A million stars pinned against a clear black night sky. Sooooo many good things. My daughter took her first steps and went to her first beach here, on Praia Grande. The weather is always sunny and perfect, and each time we go it's a combination of visiting all of our favorite places (like Porches, for pottery) and trying new ones. One time we drove to Sagres which is the most southwestern point in Portugal. You can walk out to the tip of the cape, atop tall vertical cliffs, surrounded by water on 3 sides. The place is magical and really feels like the edge of the world. A nearby beach made of smooth black rocks is a good place to watch surfers. The people in the Algarve are so friendly and welcoming, it really is an easy place to just be. By the end of our visit we always realize how this place has taught us to slow down and relax.
This place is special to me because this is where I used to spend my summer vacations as a child and teen. I always stayed in my cousin’s house. It was an adorable typical little house. Ericeira is a small and lovely village. Is a very calm, charming, typical fishing town that is situated along a coastline of outstanding surfing beaches. Nowadays, and because of the boom of surf lovers, Ericeira is a nice fusion of Portuguese heritage houses and atmosphere with a cool surfing ambience, where traditional fishermen’s cottages live amongst trendy lounge bars and cafes. The fresh smell of the sea is all over this place. It’s truly just wonderful.
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This place is special to me, there are sweet memories when I was a teenager. I like to walk on the beach in sunset, exploring the island with my friends, and have a good tropical night party. Nusa Lembongan is an island located southeast of Bali, Indonesia. It is part of a group of three islands that make up the Nusa Penida district, of which it is the most famous.
This place is special to me because it holds many great memories for me and it is where I met my closest friends. It will always hold a special place in my heart. It also has many great places to visit and is famously the home of the Beatles.
As my years of university passed by so fast, I wanted to honor some of my favourite places in Chapel Hill. I've laughed, cried, explored, pulled all-nighters, worked, and ate my way through this city, and am happy to be able to call it my home.
This place is special to me because I moved here blindly for an internship and now 2 years later, I have fallen in love with this amazingly little city. I didn't know what I was moving to - wheat? Cows? There's that if you drive out long enough, but turns out there's great food, great beer, and an amazing art community right outside my doorstep. It's been pleasant surprise every single day!
Ann Arbor, particularly downtown, is special to me for a variety of reasons. I've trained for jobs there, wandered the streets on outings with friends, attended concerts, had a memorable bad date in A2 (as some locals call it) and attend the annual Hash Bash festival, along with other art festivals that are always happening every season. There are many beautiful cities in Michigan, and in the fall the showcase of colors in the trees is something we always marvel at. From great food to good music, art and people, A2 has some amazing places to see and things to do!
This place is special to me because...it's out of a dream - you won't believe your eyes or your senses, it is magical. Once having visited Hydra, you will 'visit' there twice, once in your physical experience, and again and again in your dreams...until you return again. A captivating island only 47 miles from Athens, cruise over to Hydra and be prepared to hoof it - either on a donkey or foot - because there are no cars and no transportation on the island requiring wheels. Only 19 square miles in size, Hydra will certainly require a huge piece of your heart, for once you visit you will always long to return. Swimsuits and sandals are proper attire for anything on island. Enjoy!
This place is special to me because I now call it home. Two years ago we moved from the city of Bordeaux, to this golden sweet wine producing region of France where the fall morning mist causes the grapes to have “noble rot”, creating a high concentration of sugar in the grapes before they’re picked and made into wine. The landscapes are beautiful here. Sauternes is home to Chateau Yquem, a wine so special, that it’s the only Premier Grand Cru classé “Superior” in the world.
This is one of my favorite places I vacationed in style with my dog. Carmel by the sea is super pet friendly and always beautiful. There are many places to walk, eat, hike, shop and explore. Your furry friend is even welcome to swim and run on the beach. It is priced on the high side but worth it! It's very relaxing and full of culture, too!