Chenonceau: The French Château of My Dreams

“OMG OMG OMG” “I can’t believe how beautiful this place is!” “Look at all these flowers.” “No, but, seriously, look how beautiful it is!” These are roughly the sentiments I had upon arriving at the glorious Château de Chenonceau. I had seen photos, of course, and had always wanted to visit…and luckily enough, the place really … More Chenonceau: The French Château of My Dreams

The Loire Valley: In Search of the Salamander King at Château de Chambord

I love a good castle, and I’ve been lucky enough to see lots of Europe’s great ones, from the Pena Palace in Portugal to Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany to Windsor Castle in England. Missing from my royal repertoire, however, were the iconic French chateaux of the Loire Valley, Chambord and Chenonceau. Last spring, I was lucky … More The Loire Valley: In Search of the Salamander King at Château de Chambord

Château de Selles-sur-Cher: A Drizzly Wine Tasting in the French Countryside

Imagine you have a successful career in pharmaceutical sales. Then imagine, at age 38, giving that all up and going back to the equivalent of high school to start your education over, this time focusing on wine instead. If you did that, I would have to imagine you were pretty damn passionate about wine. Nicolas, the owner … More Château de Selles-sur-Cher: A Drizzly Wine Tasting in the French Countryside

Guédelon: Medieval Construction in Modern France

When you travel a lot, sometimes things can, inevitably, acquire a bit of samey-ness. Oh look, here’s another stately old European cathedral! There’s a grand castle with that luxurious, colorful, velvety wallpaper! And, see, over here, there’s a painting by a Renaissance master! Which isn’t to say any of those things are bad – and in … More Guédelon: Medieval Construction in Modern France

Paris: 20 Parting Observations from the Most Wonderful of Cities

I’ve been to Paris a bunch of times, so you might think I’m somewhat over it by this point. However, a quick glance at my iPhone’s Camera Roll would suggest otherwise. For example, when I was there for two weeks last April and May, I took over 800 photos. So, clearly, this city holds no more interest … More Paris: 20 Parting Observations from the Most Wonderful of Cities