We take an early morning stroll along the Canal du Thiou in Annecy, France. Located in the Rhône-Alpes region of southeastern France at the northern tip of Annecy Lake, this medieval town is remarkable for its dream-like quality.
Pack Saddles of Anatolia
In the Traditional town of Safronbolu in Turkey’s Black Sea region, we had the good fortune to observe packsaddle maker (‘semerci”) Mustafa Isik at work at his ancient craft, making donkey saddles on his rustic workshop floor.
Reliving Viking Life and Times at the Jorvik Viking Centre, York
The Romans knew it as Eboracum. To the Saxons it was Eoforwick. Then the Vikings named it Jorvik. Today we know it as York. When you visit the Jorvik Viking Centre, you’re standing on the exact place where the Jorvik Viking village stood int he tenth century.
The Vow of the Peacock
We bring you “Les Voeux du Paon,” which details the fourteenth century ceremony designed to reaffirm a knight’s commitment to chivalry and performing great deeds. A roasted peacock, with head and glorious tail feathers intact, is brought to the table by a female of authority. Before eating it, the knights perform their vows over the bird, often taking one of the tail feathers as a remembrance.
In the sublime countryside of Burgundy, France, we visit the Hospices de beaune or (Hôtel-Dieu de Beaune), which is not only historic and beautiful (its dazzling facade is a medieval wonder to behold), but also an excellent museum boasting a trove of Renaissance-era art treasures.
Medieval Cave Churches and Monasteries of the Ihlara Valley
We journey east to the lunar landscape of Cappadocian Turkey, where early Christians left as their legacy a mosaic of thousands of dwellings and hundreds of churches and monasteries, all carved out of the soft volcanic stone and accessed by a labyrinth of winding, narrow, rock-cut passages and tunnels.
The Louvre: From Medieval Fortress to World Class Museum
Built outside of the protective wall that King PHilippe Auguste II constructed in the latter part of the twelfth and early thirteenth centuries to protect his Parisian citizens from the threat of enemies, the original Louvre included a moat, a huge keep, and several towers.