For many Germans, Golden Sands near the town of Varna in Bulgaria is a more affordable alternative to the Spanish vacation island of Mallorca. Loud music, packed beaches and plenty of cheap booze – an irresistible combo for primarily young tourist revellers. But what’s it really like to holiday on the Black Sea, with the war in Ukraine raging across the water to the north? And is the war having an impact on tourism in Bulgaria? DW’s Lukas Stege asked around. But he also found time to party – and said it felt like home.
Golden Sands is a major seaside resort town on the northern Bulgarian Black Sea Coast, adjacent to a national park of the same name in the municipality of Varna. Located 17 km north of downtown Varna, it is virtually connected to the city by a continuous swath of resorts and villa communities.
Bavaria is the German state most popular among tourists. No wonder. Here you can find fairytale castles like Neuschwanstein, huge mountains, clear lakes, baroque churches, and timber-framed villages. Plus… fantastic beer! We will show you what you shouldn’t miss in Bavaria: the three most popular regions and the three most visited Bavarian cities and their highlights. Spoiler alert! Munich is one of them. But what are the other two cities in the ranking?
DW Reporter Lukas Stege explores the Polish city of Gdańsk, where the Eastern Bloc began its decline! Communism‘s deterioration picked up pace when the port workers at Lenin Shipyard went on strike in 1980 and the independent union Solidarity was founded.
00:00 Intro 00:15 The Old City of Gdańsk 01:04 A Port Ride in the Pirate Ship Ferry 01:44 The Old Shipyard and the Solidarność or Solidarity Movement 06:57 Lost Place and Free Space for Artists, Galleries and Bars 07:58 Gallery Mleczny Piotr 08:36 100cnia
Join Lukas on his journey through Europe’s recent history, which was heavily influenced by these events in Gdańsk. And he also brings us to a very special lost place in this port city!
CREDITS Report: Lukas Stege, Anne Termeche Camera: Holm Weber Editing: Klaus Hellmich
@Eva zu Beck takes you on a journey to Cholula and Puebla, two cities in central Mexico designated as Pueblos Mágicos, or Magical Towns. These are places that offer visitors a very special experience, owing to their typical historic character and in some cases, colonial-era architecture. As well as a spectacular pyramid and a miniature volcano, the towns are a great place to experience the Danza de los Voladores, or Dance of the Flyers.
Valencia, a popular vacation destination on Spain’s Mediterranean coast. We asked some locals for their travel tips. What are Valencia’s must-sees? Here are five highlights! Would you like to visit Spain one day?
Timeline: 00:00 Intro 00:20 City of Arts and Sciences 00:52 Jardín del Turia 01T:49 Central Market 02:32 Valencia Cathedral 03:23 Eating Paella at Bar Cremaet
Who knows a city best? The locals. We picked up some tips for a visit to Bilbao from its residents. The Guggenheim Museum, Mount Artxanda and pintxos, the Basque answer to tapas, are high on the list.
Bilbao, an industrial port city in northern Spain, is surrounded by green mountains. It’s the de facto capital of Basque Country, with a skyscraper-filled downtown. It’s famed for the Frank Gehry–designed Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, which sparked revitalization when it opened in 1997. The museum houses prominent modern and contemporary works, but it’s the curvy, titanium-clad building that receives the most attention.
Puentedey in northern Spain was named the most beautiful village in Spain in 2022. One reason is its 15-meter-high natural stone arch, carved by the Nela River and nicknamed God’s Bridge.
Puentedey stands out, a place in Burgos that, as its name indicates, is defined by a structure that was considered divine for a long time. It is a rock arch that the river Nela has been carving for millions of years on which a town has been built.
Cyril Maillot is a mail carrier in Réunion – in the most literal sense. On the tropical island in the Indian Ocean, some villages can’t be reached by road. So Maillot hikes to remote areas with a backpack full of mail. He travels by foot to places not accessible by car, deep into the mountainous region of Mafate.
A hike of several days over narrow paths and steep ascents – and in all kinds of weather. When it rains, the streams sometimes swell into a raging river. But Cyril Maillot loves his job. It’s his personal yoga: “You switch off completely and leave city life behind.” And for many of the local people in the mountains, the weekly visit by Cyril the mail carrier is their only regular contact with the outside world. A report by Lisa Louis.
Réunion Island, a French department in the Indian Ocean, is known for its volcanic, rainforested interior, coral reefs and beaches. Its most iconic landmark is Piton de la Fournaise, a climbable active volcano standing 2,632m (8,635 ft.). Piton des Neiges, a massive extinct volcano, and Réunion’s 3 calderas (natural amphitheaters formed by collapsed volcanoes), are also climbing destinations.
Hannah Hummel checks in on our behalf for the Glacier Express: The journey starts in the winter sports resort of St. Moritz, a vacation destination for the jet set. The eight-hour journey will take her to Zermatt on the Matterhorn – one of the Swiss Alps’ highest peaks.
Along the way, the train traverses a pass some 2,000 meters up, crossed almost 300 bridges and trundles through 91 tunnels. Travelers can marvel at panoramas of spectacular mountain scenery through the train’s extra-large windows. On the journey, enjoy the exclusive on-board service including a three-course meal of Swiss cuisine. Tickets in Excellence Class cost 650 euros, giving you a seven-course meal with wine pairing, champagne, and even a concierge.
Have you ever heard of Karelia? This remote region lies in the far north of Europe, on Russia’s border with Finland, and is a travel destination for those in the know. Karelia has centuries old traditions and stunning natural landscapes with vast lakes. We visit Lake Onega, Europe’s second largest lake, taste kalitki, a regional dish, go to the Banya, a traditional “black sauna”, and much more.
The Republic of Karelia is a region in northwest Russia, bordering Finland. Beside Lake Onega, capital city Petrozavodsk is home to cultural artifacts at the National Museum. On an island northeast, Kizhi Museum is an open-air complex of traditional wood buildings. Northwest, Kivach Nature Reserve has pine woods and a waterfall. West of Petrozavodsk, blue-domed Valaam Monastery is on an island in massive Lake Ladoga.