Travel Highlights from Four Beautiful European Cities

By - July 31, 2012 (Updated: November 19, 2014)

This entry is part 1 of 9 in the series Euro Summer 2013.
Bicycle in Copenhagen, Denmark

This is about the only mode of transportation we didn’t take on our European travels.

July has been a whirlwind of planes, trains and automobiles with a few boats thrown in for good measure. Now I’m back at CheeseWeb HQ, in Brussels, with a mountain of photos to edit and stories to write, so I can share my European travel journeys with you.

I spent the past month touring Europe with my dear friend Jenn, who, after seven long years wait, visited me in Brussels. I was able to share a few of my favourite European cities with her and we were able to discover two new ones together.

While I sift through my memories (and memory cards) here are a few highlights from our trip:





Paris, France

The stunning Marc Chagall ceiling at the Opera National de Paris

The stunning Marc Chagall ceiling at the Opera National de Paris

Like most European visitors, Jenn wanted to visit the city of lights and I was happy to return to Paris and act as her personal tour guide. Visiting the Paris Opera House, or Opéra National de Paris, was a big dream for Jenn, who has always loved and been involved with theatre, dance and music. I tagged along and was thrilled to discover the incredible ceiling, painted by one of my favourite artists, Marc Chagall.

Copenhagen, Denmark

Rosenborg Castle from the lovely gardens in Copenhagen, Denmark

Rosenborg Castle from the lovely gardens in Copenhagen, Denmark

The colourful Danish city of Copenhagen has been on my ‘must visit’ list for years. Andrew joined Jenn and I on this leg of our journey and the three of us explored this lively city by foot, bus and boat. We spent one of our most interesting mornings visiting Rosenborg Castle and admiring the magnificent Danish crown jewels.

Berlin, Germany

Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, Berlin, Germany

The beautiful blue stained glass of Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, Berlin, Germany.

Andrew and I had visited Berlin a few years back and ever since, I’ve been wanting to return. This time around, the weather was cold and rainy, but I still had a great time rediscovering the city. I was eager to share one of my favourite churches, the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, with Jenn. I adore the beautiful blue glass panels that make up the interior of the modern church and was excited to photograph it again.

Budapest, Hungary

Hungarian Parliament buildings on the Danube in Budapest, Hungary

Golden evening light on the Hungarian Parliament buildings on the Danube in Budapest, Hungary

If I had to pick one favourite stop on our European tour, Budapest is it. I have been itching to explore Hungary for a few years now and Budapest did not disappoint. We had so many special moments in this city; it’s hard to choose just one. However, on our first evening, we were graced with a beautiful golden light as we walked along the Danube. I was able to photograph the stunning Parliament building as the sky turned purple and the white gothic facade glowed like gold. Magical.

Over the coming months, I’ll be sharing more photos and lots of details about the places we visited in these four wonderful European cities. These posts will be interspersed with our continuing stories from our road-trip through Andalusia. Of course, as always, we’ll be highlighting plenty of great things to see and do, right here in Belgium.

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Alison Cornford-Matheson is a Canadian freelance writer and travel photographer and the founder of She is the author of The Foodie Guide to Brussels: Local Tips for Restaurants, Shops, Hotels, and Activities. Alison landed in Belgium in 2005 and, over the years, has become passionate about slow and sustainable travel, in Europe and beyond. She loves to discover hidden gems - be they museums, shops, restaurants, castles, gardens or landscapes, and share them through her words and photos. She has visited 45 countries and is currently slow travelling through North America in an RV, with her husband, Andrew, and two well-travelled cats. You can also follow her work on Google+
It's after Halloween so I can officially share Christmas Markets now right...? 🎄🎅 - 1 week ago


  1. Comment by Jenn

    Jenn July 31, 2012 at 20:03

    Can’t wait to re-visit our adventures with everyone on Cheeseweb! Driving yesterday for the first time in over a month was very odd. Also went for a nice walk today, but my adventures have mostly been with laundry and snuggles with Eigen.

    • Comment by Alison

      Alison August 1, 2012 at 10:07

      I’ve had many laundry adventures since our trip too 🙂 Funny how that happens. Thanks for sharing a wonderful month with me!

  2. Comment by Denise

    Denise August 1, 2012 at 10:02

    Alison your photos are spectacular. I have been to 3 out of these 4 cities (all but Copenhagen, also on my “must-visit” list) and have taken my own pictures of the ones you show… and well, I might just scrap mine and add yours to my memory album! 🙂 Absolutely gorgeous. Thanks for sharing your talent!

    • Comment by Alison

      Alison August 1, 2012 at 10:06

      Thank you so much Denise for your kind words! I highly recommend Copenhagen. It’s lovely; very colourful and vibrant and the Danes are warm and friendly. I would definitely go back.

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  4. Comment by Paul

    Paul August 26, 2012 at 20:28


    pictures are really good indeed !! I have been to Copenhagen many times and strongly recommend it too. I like the quiet atmosphere there is in the evenings.
    I can’t remember now but is the Rosenborg castle, the one north of Copenhagen where there is a statue of “Holger Danske”… Apparently he only “wakes up” when there is a football match between Denmark and Sweden 😉

    • Comment by Alison

      Alison August 27, 2012 at 09:15

      No, the statue is at the Kronborg castle outside of the city. Rosenborg is right in the heart of the city.

  5. Pingback: 2012 - A CheeseWeb Year in Review | Expat Life in Belgium, Travel and Photography | CheeseWeb

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