Caen is a port city and capital of Calvados department in northern France’s Normandy region. Its center features the Château de Caen, a circa-1060 castle built by William the Conqueror. It stands on a hill flanked by the Romanesque abbeys of Saint-Étienne and Sainte-Trinité, which both date from the same period. The multimedia Mémorial museum is devoted to World War II, the 1944 Battle of Normandy and the Cold War.
When planning a vacation to Europe, some of the first destinations that come to mind will be the teeming cities of Paris, London or Rome. Each of these metropolises is incredible, but they are far from all that Europe has to offer.
By exploring some of the smaller towns across the continent, it is possible to see a more authentic, traditional side to Europe. If you’re planning an upcoming getaway to the continent, here are just a few of the most beautiful small towns in Europe.
Jaafar Abdul Karim travels through one of the smallest countries in Europe: Malta. The Romans, the Arabs, the British and the French have all left their mark here. A sunny country with a multicultural heritage. Jaafar Abdul Karim starts his journey in the capital, Valetta.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city has been extensively restored and renovated. Architect Konrad Buhagiar played a major role in this. He shows Jaafar Valetta’s most beautiful places, where old and new architecture come together. In Siggiewi, the presenter meets Marilu Vella and the two cook a very special local dish: pastizzi. The dumplings are a favorite snack of the Maltese.
The island nation has been a member of the EU since 2008. And here – in a tax haven – people like to show off what they’ve got. But Malta also has its dark sides: At the end of 2017, a murder shook Maltese politics and plunged the country into a crisis. Journalist Daphne Galizia uncovered one of Malta’s biggest corruption scandals. Shortly after, she was the victim of a car bomb.
Deeply shaken by this story, Jaafar takes the ferry to Gozo. The second largest island in the Maltese archipelago is only 14 kilometers long, but it has two large opera houses. Jaafar Abdul Karim finds out why from the artistic director John Galea. This Mediterranean island is one of the sad hotspots in the refugee crisis.
Tens of thousands of people have drowned in recent years trying to reach Europe. Time and again, ships that have rescued survivors from the Mediterranean dock there. Jaafar Abdul Karim talks to survivors and Maltese photographer Darrin Zammit Lupi, who has captured moments of the refugee drama in pictures.
The Neuer Markt (New Market), one of the oldest squares in Vienna, is located west of the Karntner street (Kärntner Straße). During the Second World War, the square was heavily damaged. Many buildings were lost and replaced by modern ones.
The most famous building on the Neuer Markt is the Capuchin Church (Kapuzinerkirche). Below it is the resting place of the Habsburgs in the Capuchin Crypt. Nearby you’ll find the Ambassador Hotel and the house built for the Gebrüder Wild, a former traditional delicacy shop built in the style of the German Renaissance with a facade of the “Old German period”. Also check out the Mayseder house, one of the oldest houses on the square, and the premises of the traditional jeweler AE Köchert.
Sales of electric bicycles, or e-bikes, as they’re better known, are booming. At the same time, innovations in battery technology have extended the range that an e-bike can travel. The FT’s Harry Dempsey explores the impact they’re having on commuting, deliveries, and the cities we live in.
Heavy industries must decarbonise dramatically to reach net zero. Replacing fossil fuels with green hydrogen, created with renewable energy, is one way to reduce emissions. Examples of green hydrogen being used in various industries are emerging, but as the FT’s Sylvia Pfeifer reports, this carbon-free innovation faces a major challenge to scale up.
A selection of three essential articles read aloud from the latest issue of The Economist. This week, why the Democrats need to wake up and stop pandering to their extremes, Europe’s winter of discontent (9:50), and why bottling white wine in clear glass is an error (18:09).
We hear the latest from Ukraine and a look at how the growing energy crisis is affecting Europe. Plus: aviation news and a preview of Paris Men’s Fashion Week.
Rolling hills sit at the foot of jagged peaks. Cozy homes and warm food provide refuge from the harsh elements outside. Beautiful light paints the mountains before dark clouds wash them away. The European Alps are a place of striking linguistic, cultural, and visual duality- a duality I hope to capture here.