Vallauris: A Town With Feet of Clay …

… and a reputation that owes everything to the world’s greatest artist of the 20th century Vallauris proudly calls itself “the world’s capital of ceramics”. But that is only half the story.

The more complete version goes something like this: for centuries, Vallauris had been the place where the inhabitants of the French Riviera came to buy their ceramic plates and pottery, and when the demand for hand-made, carefully crafted

Vallauris: A Town With Feet of Clay …

Ancient History Between Cannes and Antibes

Easy Hikes in the South of France What have the Romans ever done for the French Riviera? Not much, it appears. For our first proper walk of the year – one involving a forest, “big sky views” and mud under our feet – we picked a theatre of ancient local history.

You would be surprised how difficult it can be to find real “history” on the French Riviera. Don’t get

Ancient History Between Cannes and Antibes

A Garden With a View in Genoa

Two Hours in Genoa What to do in Genoa when you have no more than an hour to spend Genoa is the capital of the Italian Riviera, more or less what Nice is on the French side, but with one important distinction: Whereas all visitors of the French Riviera will, sooner or later, get to Nice (to go shopping, to do sight-seeing or simply to change from plane or TGV train to some form of

A Garden With a View in Genoa

The French Riviera on Canvas

Artists in the French Riviera Our sadly incomplete collection of picturesque views from Cagnes-sur-Mer Many of the 20th century’s most famous painters spent some time – occasionally the most fruitful years of their lives – on the French Riviera. On good, sunny and clear days, of which there are many, the whole area looks like a painting, and there is practically not a single town along the coast which has not been immortalized in a

The French Riviera on Canvas

Smelly Waters and the Spirit of European Unity in Aachen

The day when the Easy Hikers helped European history come full circle When the weather is cold and wet, as it was for the Christmas season in Germany, only the most intrepid dare to defy the elements out on the trails in the countryside. Easy Hikers, meanwhile, retreat to the smallest of outdoors: the city walk, especially in Germany where cities have a charm all of their own at that time of the year, even

Smelly Waters and the Spirit of European Unity in Aachen

A Perfect Winter Walk in the Italian Riviera

Happy Italian families, sunshine and local delicacies combine for a perfect winter walk on the Mediterranean Winter walks very much have their own logic: a successful outdoor experience between December and February requires more careful thinking than a journey at any time of the year, even in the relatively mild and balmy climate of the French and Italian Riviera.

Many of the proper trails – as opposed to asphalted footpaths

A Perfect Winter Walk in the Italian Riviera

A Côte d’Azur Gem: Medieval Town Haut de Cagnes

Easy Hikes in the French Riviera Something to do outdoors during the “rainy season” on the French Riviera Normally, we are spoilt by the weather in our part of the world, but for the past six weeks, it has been raining and raining. And just when it felt that the worst was finally over, somebody up there decided to throw the sluice gates open once again, and we found ourselves cooped up for yet another

A Côte d’Azur Gem: Medieval Town Haut de Cagnes

The Story of the First Garden City in the UK

Walks near London Following in the footsteps of Soviet town planners, teetotal socialists, Quakers, silly old men in skin-tight trousers and – perhaps – even Vladimir Ilyich Lenin to the first garden city in the UK.

It may be difficult to believe, but Letchworth Garden City, nowadays a well-heeled country town on the edge of North London’s commuter belt, …

… was once at the cutting edge of

The Story of the First Garden City in the UK

Stairways of Valletta

#MaltaisMore by Mrs Easy Hiker Perhaps it is because we are under the charms of Liguria (the nearest Italian region neighbouring Menton where we now reside) and lived along the stairways of Montmartre for more than 20 years, that the sight of the stairways of Valletta gave us a tug of familiarity.

There is definitely an Italianate feel to Malta’s capital city. Its narrow cobblestoned alleyways certainly remind us of many found in

Stairways of Valletta

Horsenden Hill and the Grand Union Canal

Walks near London London’s extensive canal network is a haven for nature lovers – and often just a single stairway down from the city’s hustle and bustle One of the best things about London is that you don’t have to leave the city to do some serious walking. The West End is virtually surrounded by the leftovers from King Henry VIII’s deer-hunting grounds (Hyde Park, Green Park, St James’s Park, Regent’s Park), while from the

Horsenden Hill and the Grand Union Canal