Feast on a col­lec­tion to in­spire

Widen your hori­zons with one of th­ese great Euro­pean ex­pe­ri­ences – whether climb­ing in France, learn­ing to cook in Spain or stay­ing in a wind­mill in Greece Cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ences


Delve deeper into the cor­ners of Europe that helped to in­spire writ­ers, mu­si­cians, artists and Vik­ings. 1 The lat­est fado in Lis­bon Take a Por­tuguese gui­tar, a soul­ful singer and a gen­er­ous dol­lop of ten­der, world-weary melan­choly and you have fado: the mu­sic that has been the sound­track to Lis­bon life for cen­turies. For a fado week­end, nav­i­gate the wind­ing streets of the Alfama district, the spir­i­tual home of the genre, to find the best venues. Sen­hor Vinho restau­rant hosts first-class per­for­mances amidst ce­ramic tiled walls and knotty beamed ceil­ings, ac­com­pa­nied by a seafood-heavy menu (srv­inho.com). Nearby, the Museu do Fado of­fers an au­thor­i­ta­tive in­tro­duc­tion to fado folk­lore. Stay: Story Guest­house is a B&Bwith eclec­tic decor, (lis­bon­sto­ryguest­house.com) 2Aweek­end homage to Cat­alo­nia Ge­orge Or­well wasn’t al­ways es­pe­cially po­lite about Barcelona, de­scrib­ing the city’s most fa­mous land­mark, the Sagrada Fa­milia, as one of the most hideous build­ings in the world. None­the­less, his mas­terly 1938 ac­count of the Span­ish Civil War, Homage to Cat­alo­nia, means his name has long been en­shrined in city folk­lore. Ibe­ri­ana­ture of­fers reg­u­lar Span­ish Civil War day tours of Barcelona, cov­er­ing var­i­ous lo­ca­tions as­so­ci­ated with Or­well’s time here.

Cast­ing the city’s most fa­mil­iar streets in a new light, tours re­visit the scenes of gun­fights and bomb blasts around La Ram­bla and the Barri Gotic, as well as of­fices where Or­well and his Marx­ist com­rades were head­quar­tered (ibe­ri­ana­ture.com).

For some R&R, head to the sea­side town of Tar­rag­ona, a 90-minute train jour­ney south (renfe.com).

Or­well spent time in the city re­cov­er­ing from in­juries dur­ing the civil war. Stay: Ho­tel Banys Ori­en­tals is a pop­u­lar bou­tique ho­tel in

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