Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Curiosity Chest

Macedonia: Pollution Tourism

Macedonia’s latest tourist attraction is a holiday in a polluted environment, national media reported on November 14, although evidence suggests the tourist offer is in fact fake.
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Bosnia and Herzegovina
Want an "Obama" Suit? Go to Bosnia

A Bosnian clothes-making company has started selling a new line of suits for men named “Obama,” after the newly elected US President.
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Greece to Officially Honour Lord Byron

16 October 2008 | Greece decided on an official day on which it will honour Lord Byron and other foreigners who participated in the war for Greek independence from the Ottoman Empire at the beginning of the nineteenth century.
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In Serbia, Bosnia and Croatia, Traces of War Crimes and Criminals Attract Tourists

7 October 2008 | Several countries in the Western Balkans, including Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia, are banking on their recent conflict-torn past and offering foreign visitors the chance to retrace the steps of war criminals and see... Full Story

Ancient Greece’s Elgin Marbles Stand at the Centre of a 200-Year Long Great Ado

During his term as British ambassador to the Ottoman Empire at the turn of the nineteenth century, Thomas Bruce, Seventh Earl of Elgin, already knew his actions were controversial and that he might go down in history as a “vandal.” But he most... Full Story

The Mystic Muslim Sects of the Mevlevi, the Alevi and Alians in Turkey and Bulgaria

Jalal al-Din Muhammad Rumi, also known as Mevlana, was a Medieval Persian poet and philosopher and the spiritual founder of the whirling dervishes. He delivered his sermons and wrote his religious poetry in literary Persian, capturing the... Full Story

Blue Amulets Guard Against the Evil Eye in Greece, Turkey and Bulgaria

If you’ve ever spent time in Turkey or Greece, you’ll surely remember the feeling that you’re constantly being watched. Blue circles in the shape of single, stylised eyes constantly observe from everywhere – dangling from cars’ rear-view mirrors,... Full Story

The New Bulgarian Souvenir? Coming Soon

From Siberian amber and stylish pashmina shawls from Nepal or Kashmir to unimaginable objects such as a ceramic egg, in which King Solomon lies in bed with the Queen of Sheba, tourist souvenirs are one of the major joys available to travellers... Full Story

Greece's Curiosities: Wild, Difficult, Maniots

Upon hearing the church bells ring, all the males from the nobility clan would rush to their marble-roofed towers. After grabbing their arms, they would dash up the stairs to reach their battle positions and fire at the enemy. From the narrow... Full Story

The (Un)Usual Suspects: Bulgaria’s Top 100 Tourist Sites – Communist and Contemporary

If you thought that tourism under socialism was irreconcilably different from that in developed democratic countries, the latest travellers' mania in Bulgaria will come as a surprise. A popular trend there nowadays is the collecting of special... Full Story


Foreign Wines Outnumbered Bulgarian Ones on Vinaria 2014 Competition

11 March 2014 | National wine tastings, preceding Bulgaria’s biggest wine fair, Vinaria 2014, started today with a surprise: foreign wines exceeded in number Bulgarian ones first time in history of the competition. Full Story

Useful Reads

In Sfakia: Passing Time in the Wilds of Crete (2008) | By Peter Trudgill

Crete has long been acknowledged as one of the most singular and unique parts of Greece. Its people keep a fierce hold on their traditions, customs and history. Practically a country of its own, this vast island looms over all others in Greece. Nevertheless, as In Sfakia author Peter Trudgill aptly notes in his preface, “some parts of Crete are more special than others, and Sfakia, on the remote south coast, is certainly one of those.” Full Story


Serbia Surprises with Choice of Little-Known Singer for Eurovision

12 March 2009 | A little-known Serbian singer and composer, Marko Kon, has surprised many by emerging as his country's representative at the 54th Eurovision in Moscow.
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