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Sorèze - France - once a place exclusively for Schoolboys destined to explore the world

The town of Sorèze is in the Tarn South, the borders of three departments, Haute-Garonne, Tarn and Aude and the Regional Natural Park of Haut Languedoc. It sits cosily at the foot of the Black Mountains which sources the Canal du Midi. A once significant transport canal to the area but now more popular with tourists. As I walked around Sorèze I discover it is more of a commune than a town at least in the centre. However, as populations have grown Soreze is a town with a population of just under 3000. The half-timbered houses and corbels (sixteenth and seventeenth century.), Its artisans and artists, the steeple Saint Martin (fifteenth century.), The Saint-Martin tower (15th Century) is an imposing but elegant historical monument that stands proud despite only being a ruin. It is the only remains of the parish church of the fifteenth century. Sorèze isn't exactly going to take you long to see should you venture there for the day. Other highlights include the glass museum and the museum of Dom Robert and tapestry of the twentieth century. However, what is of most significance in this pristine town is, of course, the old abbey school. The Abbey School dates back to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Its history is linked to that of education in France, in Europe and in the world because of its international recruitment. She became one of twelve royal military schools in the reign of Louis XVI. With only seven restaurants listed on Tripadvisor, you don't exactly have much choice in places to go. However, for a day trip, I recommend booking the Pub Saint Martin. Here I dined on the 13 euro lunch menu which included more than enough wine. It's also rated the number 1 restaurant on TripAdvisor so I and many others can't be too far off the mark in our recommendation. You may wish to stay in Sorèze to take the surrounding area. As surrounding Sorèze you have the countryside to the east which includes lakes, caves and waterfalls and the Dominial Forest of the Montagne Noire (The Black Mountains). The most interesting villages nearby include Revel, Saissac, Montolieu (well known for its bookshops) and Durfort. A little further afield, the town of Castelnaudary is well known for its cassoulet, and Carcassonne to the south-east is about 50 kilometres from Soréze but is one of the most impressive medieval towns in the world and well worth visiting. To get to Sorèze if you are not from France I recommend flying into Carcassonne but it is also very reachable if you fly to Toulouse in the west, or Perpignan in the east. Many of Europes numerous Airlines fly into one of those 3 airports - depending on where you are flying from. You are of course more than likely to be able to pick up a good deal if planned ahead. Kayak, Google Flights and Skyscanner should be the go-to websites for searching for the best flight deals. In my personal experience, my favourite place to go for European flight deals is Skyscanner. For some reason, Skyscanner works best when searching for European Flights over any of its rivals. If you are tempted to visit Sorèze and the Saint-Ferréol lake, you could stay in one of the hotels, Auberges or Airbnbs that are in and around the area. Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally the most choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The authorities still allow Airbnb in the town (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars, Pounds or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback. I hope you have a great time in Soreze France should you visit. I am not sponsored by the French Government or any Travel Group, I simply have written this post as I enjoy travelling. Please do check out this blog for more independent travel ideas and my YouTube Channel. If any of this information has been useful to you and you fancy buying me a Coffee please do click the link below to buy me a Coffee via Ko-Fi.com. As regular readers to this website will not be surprised to learn - I made a video of my brief excursion to Sorèze. Let me know what you think by leaving a comment on this website or on the YouTube Video. Thanks very much! Stay safe & keep Progressing! The Wondering Englishman.

Revèl France - A Market town in the South of France that comes alive on Saturday

As the brakes come off the Global Lockdown, it gives many of us, a needed excuse to go out there and explore. I recently found myself in the South of France (although some may call it southwestern France) in the Haute-Garonne department of France. One of the original 83 departments created during the French Revolution on 4 March 1790. Created from part of the former province of Languedoc. I just happened to find myself in the usually sleepy town of Revèl except today was Saturday and this was the day that Revèl has traditionally come alive. Revèl with a population just shy of 10,000 takes a deep breathe in every Saturday when visitors pour into its Medieval centre and migrate on mass towards the Market Square. Steeped in over 650+ years of trading history visitors get a chance to purchase some of the finest local produce this area of France has to offer. From fresh Oysters, locally made Pâté and fruits so ripe you could eat them like candy. While all at the same time encountering wonderful french characters with each turn you take. Founded in 1342 by Philippe VI of Valois. The heart of Revel is its central market, Right in the centre of the market square is an ancient 14th-century building supported by a forest of pillars and beams. As you penetrate the centre of this truly beautiful medieval building you encounter the tourist office that allows access to what used to be the local Jail and also the Watchtower. To really get a perspective on the town it is recommended to head up to the top of the watchtower. Here you will see close up the Market squares beautiful clock tower and be able to look out across the wonderful landscape taking in the Black Mountains and the towns Notre Dame Cathedral. Look down into the square and you will hear the buzz of the visitors and full-time inhabitants doing their weekly shopping. Content in the knowledge that their ancestors and many like you will have partaken in an almost an identical activity for over 6 centuries in the exact same place and in the uniquely identical fashion. As Revèl grew over the ages and it's market became more widely known it attracted some incredibly talented tradesmen. From the nineteenth century, cabinet makers, markers, sculptors, and bronzers made Revel the capital of the Furniture of Art. However, as the modern world has taken to pre-packed self-assembled minimal furniture from Sweden Revèl's furniture trade has contracted massively. Although, new furniture is still being made in the town and its history is celebrated at the furniture museum also found in the town. If you are curious about what a Market day looks and feels like in the days after COVID I've made a video where I walk around the market and then head up the watchtower to get the picturesque view over the bustling market town. And when you have had your fill of Markets, Cathedrals & Furniture you could take a short drive to the Saint-Ferréol lake. The Lakes beach is a stone's throw away from Revel. The centrepiece of the genial device created in the 17th century by Pierre-Paul Riquet to supply water to the Canal du Midi, the Saint-Ferréol lake, classified as a World Heritage site. Humanity by UNESCO constitutes a tourist site to be frequented in all seasons. With its 80-hectare park, its waterfalls, its sheaf of water and its shaded alleys, the site offers all the pleasures of swimming (monitored in summer), fishing, discovering nature, as well as practising many sports: Boats, windsurfing, tennis, horse riding, hiking, mountain biking, climbing, speleology and gliding. I'm sure I've missed something there but it gives you an idea that there is something for every outdoor enthusiast. To get to Revel if you are not from France I recommend flying into Carcassone but it is also very reachable if you fly to Toulouse in the west or Perpignan in the east. Many of Europes numerous Airlines fly into one of those 3 airports - depending on where you are flying from. You are of course more than likely to be able to pick up a good deal if planned ahead. Kayak, Google Flights and Skyscanner should be the go-to websites for searching for the best flight deals. In my personal experience, my favourite place to go for European flight deals is Skyscanner. For some reason, Skyscanner works best when searching for European Flights over any of its rivals. If you are tempted to visit Revel and the Saint-Ferréol lake, you could stay in one of the hotels, Auberges or Airbnbs that are in and around the area. Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally the most choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback. I hope you have a great time in Revèl France should you visit. I am not sponsored by the French Government or any Travel Group, I simply have written this post as I enjoy travelling. Please do check out this blog for more independent travel ideas and my YouTube Channel. And if any of this information has been useful to you and you fancy buying me a Coffee please do click the link below to buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi.com Thanks very much! Stay safe & keep Progressing! The Wondering Englishman.

Cork Ireland - An Irish Gem that should be seen by the World

An old Irish proverb is said to go "May the road rise to meet you". I found myself thinking about this proverb as I walked the rolling streets of Cork on my recent visit. With each corner, I explored, I realised Cork centre is in a basin and most likely situated on old marshland (after all Cork means Marsh in old Irish). The rolling hills that surround the centre make for wonderful walks as they rise and fall beneath your feet as you take in this quaint Irish city. Can Cork be seen in a day or even a weekend? I flew to Ireland from London with the ambition that I would get to know this Southern Irish city as best I could. Cork is Ireland's second-biggest city after Dublin the capital. Men from overseas like myself have been walking its rolling roads since 915 AD when the Vikings set up shop here. Their ambition was to trade with the unique natives. Known as the Rebel city due to the men who had ties to the War of the Roses. And yet many generations later, some Irish rebel folk still consider Cork to be the real capital of Ireland. This Englishman with Irish Blood (like the Morrissey song), had to been to Ireland many times over his many decades and yet strangely had never set foot in Cork. And yet when Ryanair is offering flights to Cork for £10 who could possibly say refuse?! It would be rude to say no I thought! So, off I went for a brief excursion. Cork Airport is served by most of Europes major Airlines - depending on where you are flying from. You are more than likely to be able to pick up a good deal if planned ahead. Kayak, Google Flights and Skyscanner should be the go-to websites for searching for the best flight deals. However, my personal favourite for European flight deals is Skyscanner. For some reason, Skyscanner works best when searching for European Flights over any of its rivals. When you arrive at Cork Airport it's incredibly easy to get to the centre of the city. You will have 3 options: Rent a car Take the Bus Taxi On my recent trip, I elected to take the Bus. Journey time was about 15/20mins and cost a princely sum of 2 Euros and 80 cents. Bolt & Uber do exist in Cork so if you haven't signed up to either company use my codes for money off your first 2-3 journeys Use Code "uberAVT" to get money off your first journey with Uber. Use Code "HFDHF" to get money off your first journey with Bolt. If you want to rent a car in Ireland, I personally recommend AutoEurope. They offer competitive prices and in my mind good quality cars. They can be found at this link. If you are curious about how I spent 24 hours in Cork I made a video about that adventure. There are over 300 videos on my YouTube Channel The Wondering Englishman along similar lines each with unique adventures and destinations. To truly understand the city of Cork you really need a couple of days. However, I prove in the video that the city can be explored in 24 hours. Of course, I didn't see everything and if you really want to take advantage of all Cork has to offer from Museums to Pubs and Restaurants you will undoubtedly need more time there. But where should you stay when you arrive in Cork? Given its size staying anywhere around the city will suffice. There are a variety of options to pick from. Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally more choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback. Upon arriving in the city you will be drawn to the centre. Cork is very compact, with most sights, restaurants and nightlife nestled around the centre. There are two cathedrals in the city; St. Mary's Cathedral and Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral. St Mary's Cathedral often referred to as the North Cathedral, is the Catholic cathedral of the city and was begun in 1808. Its distinctive tower was added in the 1860s. St Fin Barre's Cathedral serves the Church of Ireland (Anglican) and is possibly the more famous of the two. Being the second-largest city in Ireland and a hotbed for academic and scientific culture, there are a variety of things to keep you entertained should you not be obsessed with Irish pubs. From Opera to the theatre and to concerts and festivals. Oasis played a phenomenal and very famous gig in Cork many years back. If you have the legs and you like to run or walk long distances do not hesitate in exploring the outskirts of the city to really get a real feel for the city. I hope you have a great time in Cork Ireland should you visit. I am not sponsored by the Irish Government or any Travel Group, I simply have written this post as I enjoy travelling. Please do check out this blog for more independent travel ideas and my YouTube Channel. And if any of this information has been useful to you and you fancy buying me a Coffee please do click the link below to buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi.com Thanks very much! Stay safe & keep Progressing! The Wondering Englishman.

Izmir Turkey & a Wonder of the World

Izmir, Turkey - had you heard of it before today? You probably had. But, there's a small chance you may not have heard of it. Some people live lives where knowing every city in every corner of the planet isn't that important. I was reminded of Izmir just over a year ago when I was last in Turkey. I recall learning about it when I studied Latin at school and then looking at this dot on the map and Wondering if I would ever go there. After that Wonder - I have to admit - I kind of forgot all about it. Then, the opportunity came about to go there post Vienna. The flight was reasonably priced so I decided to book it and go see what Izmir and the surrounding area was like. Once again - I decided to document that adventure. It may not have the fame Istanbul has or the power Ankara has (I will be posting a video on Ankara soon). However, it is a charming city and a lot bigger than I expected it to be. My one regret - I simply didn't stay in the city long enough - I feel to really know a place you must spend weeks maybe months in the city you are trying to get to know. Maybe another time - however the brief tour of the city was enjoyable and rewarding.

Post Izmir I rented a car so that I could go and find one of the seven wonders of the World. The Temple of Artemis or Artemision (Greek: Ἀρτεμίσιον; Turkish: Artemis Tapınağı), also known less precisely as the Temple of Diana, was a Greek temple dedicated to an ancient, local form of the goddess Artemis. It was located in Ephesus (near the modern town of Selçuk in present-day Turkey). And this is exactly where I decided to drive. First to the town of Selcuk where I could learn more about Artemis and the local history before taking in one of the Wonders of the World. If you watch the video - you will see what it looks like today - but some background on the place - It was completely rebuilt three times, and in its final form was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. By 401 AD it had been ruined or destroyed. Only foundations and fragments of the last temple remain at the site. The earliest version of the temple (a temenos) antedated the Ionic immigration by many years, and dates to the Bronze Age. Callimachus, in his Hymn to Artemis, attributed it to the Amazons. In the 7th century BC, it was destroyed by a flood. Its reconstruction, in more grandiose form, began around 550 BC, under the Cretan architect Chersiphron and his son Metagenes. The project was funded by Croesus of Lydia, and took 10 years to complete. This version of the temple was destroyed in 356 BC by Herostratus in an act of arson. The next, greatest and last form of the temple, funded by the Ephesians themselves, is described in Antipater of Sidon's list of the world's Seven Wonders: I have set eyes on the wall of lofty Babylon on which is a road for chariots, and the statue of Zeus by the Alpheus, and the hanging gardens, and the colossus of the Sun, and the huge labour of the high pyramids, and the vast tomb of Mausolus; but when I saw the house of Artemis that mounted to the clouds, those other marvels lost their brilliancy, and I said, "Lo, apart from Olympus, the Sun never looked on aught so grand". And now The Wondering Englishman has set his eyes and his camera on this wonder. Check out the video and let me know if its a place you now want to see or not. To truly understand the city of Izmir you really need 2 days at the very least. And given its size staying anywhere around the city will suffice. There are a variety of options to pick from. Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally more choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. To make your life easier here is a Booking.com booking/search window. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback. One suggestion before you visit Turkey and any nation that you are not connected with would be to try and learn a little bit of the local lingo. Yes, a lot of people in Turkey speak English but saying Hello in Turkish - "Merhaba". Will go a long way in terms of getting more warmth from the Turkish people and also endearing yourself to them more. I recommend learning a second or sixth language with Rosetta Stone. They do amazing online courses for beginners to experts in every language you could possibly want to learn including Estonian! I hope you have a great time in Izmir Turkey should you visit. I am not sponsored by the Turkish Government or any Travel Group I simply have written this post as I enjoy travelling. Please do check out this blog for more independent travel ideas and my YouTube Channel. And if any of this information has been useful to you and you fancy buying me a Coffee please do click the link below to buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi.com

1 hour outside London - Shoreham-by-Sea - is it worth a visit?

Londoners are very guilty of not leaving their London bubbles. It can be such a chore to get around London at the best of times. Despite our world-beating public transport (it isn't by the way). I and many Londoners shamelessly only leave London when we depart from one of Londons six international airports. And, yet if these restricting lockdown rules have taught us anything we should value the wonderful country that is England. The average Londoner or Tourist for that matter can find themselves in a different world if they dare venture 1 hour outside of London in a North, South, East or Westerly direction. Keen to escape the knife crime and Sadiq Khans failing cohesion that London is currently offering? A one day trip I can now recommend is a trip to the English seaside town of Shoreham-by-Sea. Until 2020 I was guilty of never gracing Shoreham-by-Sea with my presence. For I had been to Brighton and even Hove and taken in much of England's wonderful coastline but for my sins, I had never taken seen the wonders of Shoreham-by-Sea. Wonders you say? Well, yes even the smallest hamlets and villages can offer the Bloomer wonders. Don't be cynical and live like a Doomer get yourself out of the London bubble. In my latest video, I took a train from Clapham Junction and journeyed for 1 hour to the English coast. I took the train to Shoreham-by-Sea (often shortened to Shoreham). Shoreham is a seaside town and port in West Sussex, England. The town is bordered to its north by the South Downs, to its west by the Adur Valley and to its south by the River Adur and Shoreham Beach on the English Channel. The town lies in the middle of the ribbon of urban development along the English south coast, approximately equidistant from the city of Brighton and Hove to the east and the town of Worthing to the west. Shoreham covers an area of 2,430 acres (980 ha) and has a population of 20,547 (2011 census). The Train from Clapham Junction to Shoreham-by-Sea can be booked via Trainline and on the day at any London Station. Should you wish to stay overnight you could pick an Airbnb, a local cottage on Holidaycottages.co.uk or one of the local hotels with Hotels.com or booking.com. Check out local hotel prices with the booking.com Search form below. I am not sponsored by the British Government or any Travel Group I simply have written this post as I enjoy travelling. Please do check out this blog for more independent travel ideas and my YouTube Channel. The Wondering Englishman - Can be found on YouTube, Bitchute & LBRY Thank you Shoreham-By-Sea. More travel content to follow. Subscribe for updates. And if any of this information has been useful to you and you fancy buying me a Coffee please do click the link below to buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi.com

I was cancelled by the left - Don't let this happen to you....

Some might say my journey forked, I took a turn that led me over a cliff edge. I've hesitated about telling this story for a very long time. Only my close friends and family know what has happened to me. If I had just stayed away from the Conservative Party and Politics my life now would be very different. A small rag based in Hackney London staffed by a leftwing hack made the decision to smear my name. Some might call that smear "Doxxing" or to be "Doxxed". The editorial decision made by a Hackney Rag has cost me dearly. My career was taken from me, my job prospects were taken from me, relationships were destroyed and my life went from being very comfortable to a struggle. I am Alex van Terheyden and this sadly is my story. I hope this can be a lesson, so this doesn't happen to you - and If this doesn't put you off Politics, then I don't know what will. My story is not entirely unique. However, I have taken the time to put that story into video form via my YouTube Channel "The Wondering Englishman". Should you choose to watch that video you will discover how my life was turned upside down. I'll show you how a member of the left and then later the mob would set about cancelling me and in turn catastrophically impacting my life detrimentally for what seems like forever. It all started 2 years ago. In the Early Spring of 2018. I was working at a hedge fund trading bonds. This took up most of my time due to the long hours. However, I had for my entire life always had an interest in politics. This stemmed - way back to my school days, university days and working life. In 2006 I was living in South Hackney in the ward of Hoxton - which is Now Hoxton West. I was a member of the Conservative party. I agreed to stand in the very unwinnable seat along with 2 other conservatives in the ward of Hoxton. As predicted I came last along with the other Conservatives. This was Hackney after all. People don’t vote Conservative in Hackney. However, I believed in democracy at the time, meaning people should have the chance to vote for an alternative to Labour. In 2010, I could see in the borough of Tower Hamlets, that the Labour party, was fraudulently buying the vote through postal vote fraud. I predicted in the Hustings that the Labour Mayoral candidate was corrupt. As this was a borough I had once lived in I wanted to voice my discontent to what was going on in Tower Hamlets and also stand for Free Speech so I migrated to the Pirate Party. Of course this being Tower Hamlets and Bethnal Green - Labour easily won that election. However, I did make my voice known that I believed electing a Tower Hamlets Mayor was the wrong decision for the electorate and it would lead to corruption. Low and behold years later I was proved right as the Mayor was found guilty of mass corruption.

After this election, I grew despondent with politics. I realised at least in London people are tribal and will rarely care to see the corruption that is in the world around them. I concentrated on my career. I focused on making money in the financial markets. I did this for many years. However, despite standing for the Pirate party in 2010 I remained a follower and a member of the Conservative party.

The Fork in the Road that led to my fall from grace. In early 2018 I was asked if I would be a conservative candidate in the Hoxton West Ward as the Conservatives were failing to find enough people to put on the ballot paper. I declined at first as I thought I would be too busy working. I was then told that I need only be a paper candidate. A paper candidate is someone who is on the ballot paper there to make up the numbers. I agreed and said as long as I don’t have to campaign. Knowing too well that the Conservatives always come last in Hoxton. Hipsters, Progressives & long time Hoxton residents aren’t drawn to Conservative Politics.

My name was officially on the ballot paper. The election would be the 5th of May 2018. This would prove to be one of the worst decisions I would ever make. In the run-up to the 5th May election, I would get a call from the lady running the Conservatives election campaign in Hackney. I was told that the Muslim Conservative Mayoral Candidate for Hackney wasn’t able to make the Hustings and she knew I was a fairly good public speaker and debater and asked if I would be good enough to stand in. I hesitated I really didn’t have the time for this - I was under a lot of pressure at work to perform and work USA Hours. However, as I had met Conservatives Muslim Mayoral candidate and thought he was a good man - I agreed to take part. It was this action that I’m convinced put me on the radar of a so-called Journalist who has consistently been very closely aligned with the Labour party. The so-called Journalists name was Adam Barnet. Adam Barnett decided to do some digging into my internet history.
He discovered a few things about me. This Left-wing activist decided to reach out to me via Twitter using the Hackney papers Twitter account. I have decided not to link the Rag or refer to its name in this post as I don't think their paper deserves the clicks or the improved SEO that this blog post will give their awful paper. (Please refer to video for the exact content of that Tweet) I got their Direct Message (DM) while I was sat at my desk in my workplace. I took it for the smear that it was. At this moment in time, I didn’t know who the reporter was who was writing this story. I simply knew someone at the Hackney Rag was out for blood. And they were going to print something with my comment or not. This is a common theme in British Journalism - attack and smear those who don’t think the same as them. Is this Journalism or Activism?

I thought for a moment should I just ignore this. I wanted to ignore this but I didn’t know what would be printed. Judging by the content of the DM in my Twitter Inbox the article wasn’t going to be pretty. I decided I had to defend myself from this blatant smear. At least provide context as this parasitic rag certainly had a history of attacking Conservatives. I have always been an advocate for open discussion and open debate. The exact reason I have frequently visited Speakers Corner in Hyde Park. To put it simply, I enjoy hearing different perspectives and learning from other viewpoints. Throughout my history, I have always loved a good debate. The views I held when I was 17 were very different from the views I held when I was 27 and they changed again when in my 30s. All because I’ve challenged my own viewpoints and those of others in a civil and open debate. On March 18th 2018 I was at Speakers Corner - I and many who believed in Free Speech were there that day. They came from all walks of life and every religious faith. However, to a far-left activist who wrote for a local rag every man and his dog that day would be smeared with the suggestion that they attended a far-right rally. When instead I and many decent people were simply at Speakers Corner on a cold Sunday in March. Effectively Adam Barnett not only was smearing me with his accusation that being at Speakers Corner meant I and others were attending a far-right rally. What he was stating was simply not true - he was being incredibly insulting to the thousands of free speech advocates who were there that day. Thankfully I made a video of that exact day and published it before this DM was sent to me. He knew I had attended not from the video but from the fact that I checked in at speakers corner that day on Facebook and did it publicly. Little did I know those images of a simple check-in would come back to haunt me. If you would like to watch the video that I posted days after attending speakers corner I have posted the link in the description and it has always been made freely available.

The video has always been free to view on my YouTube Channel and the link is here I decided to respond to the left-wing activist to at least defend myself. My response can be seen via my video - which is time-stamped in the description. I felt like I was damned if I didn’t respond and damned if I did. Many defenders of common sense and free speech such as Jordan Peterson, Douglas Murray & Christopher Hitchens have all at one stage stated you should never apologise. They will never accept your apology if you apologise they will simply see blood and go after you like a rabid dog. As far as I was concerned - I had nothing to apologise about I wasn’t Racist, Xenophobic or Bigotted. And yet I would be labelled as all of these in the coming days and weeks all because I dared to question the Political ideology that is Islam. This video isn’t to argue one way or the other on the rights and wrongs of Islam. If Islam gives people peace in their lives this is great. However, the issue arises for me and other infidels when Islam impacts their lives negatively. However, this video is simply to present what has happened to me for daring to have a view. Unlike the Marxist left, I believe all sides should be given the freedom to practice their faith, have a view on XYZ and all should be able to engage in a dialogue of ideas without the fear of being smeared, attacked or doxxed. Doxxing, also spelt "doxing," refers to the practice of using the Internet to source out and collect someone's personal and private information and then publicly releasing that information online. Derived from the word "documents," the term is an abbreviated version of "dropping dox," a method of revenge that dates back to the hacker culture of the early 1990s. This would not be the first time someone has doxxed me. I should have seen it as a warning. However, two years prior to this when I was running a Brokerage in the City of London a fanatical female Islamist called up my workplace and demanded that I should be fired because I dared to be critical of Islam in a public forum. At the time I laughed it off as it was my company and I was the boss. I should have seen this as what was to come. No person or company should feel threatened by those who hold radical religious views. And yet submitting to those that follow the book of Submission seems to be very commonplace in the 21st century. The local rag printed their smearing article about me and once again please refer to my video to see that article I have no intention of giving that rag any clicks by directing you to their failing website. This article was followed up by a second article only three days later as apparently one article wasn't a big enough smear. This Hackney rag is not an impartial free-thinking publication. It’s not actually interested in telling you the news - it's clearly a failing vehicle for those on the extreme left to attack and smear other people. By the second article, the left-wing press & mob had decided to parrot the story. And This is where I am left. My name is in tatters because a left-wing activist decided to smear me and the rest of the left-wing mainstream media decided to parrot his poorly written articles. At the time I was thrown to the wolves by the Conservative party. Apparently I was suspended pending investigation and yet I would later discover that I was no longer suspended and still a fully paid-up member of the Conservative party. I've pleaded over and over again with Google, Bing & Yahoo to take down the smearing articles - they have refused as they consider me as a paper candidate to be a public figure comparable to Boris Johnson & Donald Trump. And because of this, I've lost two jobs potentially (as no one will admit that on record) and I've been denied employment again and again as Human Resources departments look at Google and take the option of not wanting the grief and saying no. In 2020 where political correctness and image is more important than truth and hard work. And what do I mean by grief? Well, the average employer now has three fears when it comes to hiring me. Will hiring me, offend the extreme left? Where they publicise this fact and cause the company to get bad press potentially lowering the company share price - smearing the companies reputation. Will a violent Islamist go all Charlie Hebdo on the company because they hired a person who dared to question Islam. I could really be a Far-Right, Racist, Extremist who might suddenly shoot up the workplace. As I’ve lost my hair in part due to the stress of this I may now even look the part of a far-right extremist. And yet this is not me - yes I hold conservative views and yes I believe in free speech but this doesn’t make me a violent extremist. Is it possible a violent leftist or Islamist could attack the company I work for - yes it is - is this right or my fault, of course, it is not! And yet the world we now live in because of these threats it feels like my career is over. It feels like I have less worth to a potential employer than a hardened criminal who is fresh out of prison. Criminals are given the chance and yet because a parasitic left-wing journalist who used to write for a Hackney rag, decided to smear my name, my job prospects have been flushed down the toilet.

Why do I produce content? Since 2018, I’ve created content for the sole purpose of pushing this negativity off the internet. It’s reached the point now where I’ve lost two jobs because of this that I can no longer continue to hide from this. I believe a change needs to happen where peoples lives are not ruined for speaking freely. I believe every topic should be up for political debate without fearing that careers can be ended. We as a nation & a civilisation (western civilization) are being silenced into submission by groups who would like us to submit. I am not the first person in the west who has had his life ruined and I will not be the last. Where I go from here I feel my options are very limited. Should I have made this video- maybe yes and maybe no - however I’ve sat in silence for too long and with each day that's passed where I can’t get a break. I feel if I didn’t tell my story about how a selfish leftwing radical destroyed my life then maybe him and people like him would continue getting away with what they do. We need to change political discourse we need to accept people have different views. It's only through open dialogue can we learn from each other. Cancel culture is a real thing and it has clearly impacted my life. I went from being able to work in the financial markets to suddenly nobody wanting to employ me - All because of what a grubby left-wing activist had decided to print in a third rate local newspaper. Did the author intend to cancel me or simply hold me to account for my views? Well given that the original article I was labelled as "Anti-Muslim" despite the author providing zero evidence that I was anti-muslim. He, then quickly followed up with the follow-up article which once again attacked me. I think it's easy to argue his intention was to smear my name and because of the climate we live in where the author knows that if you label someone anti-muslim you know damn well you are setting out to cancel that individual. Did the lady who called my workplace to get me fired want to cancel me - of course, she did! Is this behaviour acceptable? Of course, it's not! Should employers discriminate based on race? Of course, they should not and legally that is a crime. However, it is now clear despite my politics being Left and Right depending on the topic in hand. Its clear due to reprisals, smears & stigma articles like this can damage a person for life. Is that fair - I’m certain if you are on the far left you will think this is fair but I think any fair normal human being would think this isn't how society should be. The Glass is half full - I won’t let the left impact my life any more than it already has - my plan is to rebuild from the rubble and move forward. Where we go from here I hope you will join me on that journey. I'm ready for the next fork in the road and I'm prepared to climb back up the cliff. Should you wish to reach out to me with opportunities or support - you can find those details here. Thank you for your time and attention - please support free-speech and do not allow the Marxist left to continue to cancel those who do not think the same as them. Alex van Terheyden - @vanTerheyden - The Wondering Englishman

The Chi-Coms have ruined British Pubs!

On July 4th 2020, Pubs in England were allowed to open for the first time since Lockdown began back in March 2020. Scotland followed on July 6th much to the dismay of the Cranky Lady in charge. And, yet, things aren't quite the same as they were. On "Inn-Dependence" Day I set off to discover if I could get a pint in a number of London Pubs. In short, the Chi-Coms have ruined British Pubs! How, could the Chi-Coms ruin Pubs in the UK? Beijing might be 5000+ miles away from London but the actions of their corrupt communist government either deliberately releasing a virus onto the world or accidentally releasing it onto the world (jury is still out), has as you know changed life as we know it. I wrongly assumed I could casually nip out for a pint and take in the joys of a British Pub once again. Sadly, the British Government has imposed all these authoritarian rules upon us all. The British Government is the Nanny State and because the death rate is 0.01% it must wrap us all up in cotton wool to protect us from the Lab-Made CCP virus. The below video was my first journey out to the pubs on July 4th 2020 What are these rules that have directly and indirectly ruined British Pubs?

From one-in, one-out toilets to no dancing and singing, here’s a round-up of the new normal for pubs and venues. Table service and avoiding ordering at the bar. The government’s official guidance states: ‘Indoor table service must be used where possible. Outdoor table service should also be encouraged. Though customers are permitted to stand outside if distanced appropriately.’ The guidelines do not explicitly forbid customers from ordering at the bar, but strongly suggests establishments should ‘prevent customers from remaining at the bar or counter after ordering’. Contactless and table-ordering will be the only way to pay. Contactless ordering where possible, the guidelines also suggest that venues make it possible for guests to order and pay through a contactless app. This means the Nanny State will be able to track every purchase you make. The Government, Big Tech & The Globalists want to phase out cash so they can crush any dissidents who stand in their way. If you are stopped from having a bank account then it will be easy to convince you to comply. No loud music or live entertainment. I honestly have to facepalm at this rule - Irish Folk nights, Bands and Loud Jukeboxes are no longer OK according to the Nanny State! The guidelines explicitly state that venues should ensure that guests aren’t needing to raise their voices or lean in to hear one another, stating: ‘This includes, but is not limited to, refraining from playing music or broadcasts that may encourage shouting, including if played at a volume that makes normal conversation difficult.’ The guidance warns venues they ‘should not permit live performances, including drama, comedy and music, to take place in front of a live audience’. What's the point in going to many of these establishments if it will be like this! Dancing, singing and live entertainment are off the menu for now. OK, I understand the reasons behind this but I still massively disagree. Proponents will argue the concerns around dancing is obviously the close contact with one another and singing carries the risk of droplets potentially carrying coronavirus travelling further as pub-goers belt out their favourite songs. However, this is probably one of the many main reasons people pay the premium for a drink so they can meet, be social and be merry in close proximity. Groups of six When sitting inside pubs or restaurants. People will be allowed to gather at a social distance in groups of six, with a maximum of two households involved. The six-person limit remains in pub gardens, although friends from more than two households will be allowed to socialise. "Please Nanny State can I go and meet my friends?" "NO!" says the oppressive government. Disposable condiments and cutlery. Notice the tumbleweed from the Extinction Rebellion activists on this one. We are sacrificing the environment with this rule. In addition to being advised to use disposable condiments so that one bottle of ketchup, for example, doesn’t get used by several people in one day, cutlery won’t be laid out on tables unless people order food. The guidance says venues should ‘minimise customer self-service of food, cutlery and condiments to reduce the risk of transmission. For example, providing cutlery and condiments only when food is served.’ To this end, salt, pepper, mayonnaise and ketchup will be served in individual sachets. Venues to keep a record of contact details. Thought I was insane when I said we are creeping towards a Police State. Well here is another step closer to that. Venues are advised to ‘assist (NHS Test and Trace) by keeping a temporary record of customers and visitors for 21 days.’ Customers must give their name and phone number while owners are urged to note their arrival time and how long they stay at the pub. The thought is that if there is a breakout of the virus again, people can be contacted easily to help minimise potentially spreading it further. When travelling around the Communist Soviet Union before the end of the Cold war people used to have to do this. This I'm sure is only temporary before we are forced to install some tracking device on our mobile phones or actually wear a chip so Nanny state can track us at all times. No more than 30 people indoors. Even if a venue has the capacity to hold more than that number safely indoors, the guidelines insist that no more than 30 should be allowed to congregate indoors. This is in part due to their safety in getting to and from the venue – they may be able to socially distance in the pub, but if there are too many people all using the same public transport after, for example, this could be a risk. Basically this will force all large venues to close. All small venues will likely close also as they won't be able to ram people inside the venue for a jolly. One-in, one-out toilets. In the guidelines, pubs are urged to use a ‘limited entry approach’ with a ‘one in one out’ rule. Bookings may be required in some establishments. Now, while I was out and about this seemed to be a discretionary measure but many bars, pubs and restaurants were enforcing this. If this is across the board then gone are the days where you can pop out for a sly pint. All these rules will ruin and have ruined British Pubs. 0.01% of the population will contract Covid-19 and die from it. I feel bad for the people who will die, but should we stop living how we have always lived because we are in perpetual fear? The CCP created this virus. Globalist Governments have embraced it by imposing authoritarian measures on the world. Are they doing this to protect the 0.01% of the population that will die from this virus or are they doing this to scare the crap out of everyone, track everything they do and make everyone's life more difficult? When a vaccine comes along the masses will be begging Bill Gates & the Nanny States for the vaccine. They will not care what the consequences of that NanoTech laced vaccine entails. RIP Pubs of the UK & RIP your freedoms. Until these rules are thrown in the garbage can of history, many will choose to drink at home. You can find more articles like this on my this website or you can watch my YouTube Channel - The Wondering Englishman. See you at the pub! (I hope!)

A weekend in Vienna

So I had the pleasure of spending a weekend in Vienna this year. For some reason, this had been a City I had avoided for much of my life. Why you may ask? Well, I had always (wrongly) assumed Vienna was a little bit Stuffy. Associating the historic Austria capital with Classical Music and the Opera. Well, of course, Vienna has huge historical connections to Classical Music and Opera given Mozart and Strauss Spent much of their lives in Vienna and few will argue that Vienna doesn’t have one of the most famous Operas in the world. However, on my jam-packed weekend in Vienna, I discovered there was so much more! Amazing bars, clubs, parks, restaurants and some seriously impressive sights with super awesome people! I thought it would be a City I would tick off and say I’ve now been there. But in actual fact, it’s a city I very much look forward to going back to again and visiting very soon. As let’s be honest its impossible to see everything in 1 weekend. If you are curious that weekend in Vienna can be seen on My Wondering Englishman YouTube Channel. But just because I can I’m Posting The video below. Let me know what you think by leaving a comment here or on my Video. And I hope it inspires you To visit! Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally more choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback. Thanks for reading - Keep Progressing - see you on my YouTube Channel!

Clear your mind with a walk that rewards your wallet & your health

During these strange times that we are living, I'm finding just to keep things fresh in my mind day to day that I must go for a long walk. And with every walk I take each day, I try to make sure it's a different route. And as I'm currently living in London during the authoritarian global lockdown I'm mixing up my route every time I take myself off for a walk. I always try to walk 10,000+ steps a day at a bare minimum since my various smartphones started measuring (tracking) my movement over the years. I think they are pretty accurate and while I shudder at who is using this information I do get something out of it - I feel I am at least getting something out of it and I'll tell you why. I have health insurance that rewards me for walking so many steps a day. Having Health Insurance is something I recommend for all people who can afford it; as you never know when you will need that emergency treatment that could end up saving your life. My health insurance is with a company called Vitality. I pay them via direct debit a small sum every month and in theory, they promise they will get me medical help should I ever need it. Now in the old days, a healthy person would simply pay his premiums and this would be it. However, with Vitality, they reward me as long as I stay active. This allows me to discover new streets and new walks wherever in the world I might be. Walking is a great way to improve or maintain your overall health. Just 30 minutes every day can increase cardiovascular fitness, strengthen bones, reduce excess body fat, and boost muscle power and endurance. It can also reduce your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and some cancers. Unlike some other forms of exercise, walking is free and doesn’t require any special equipment or training. Physical activity does not have to be vigorous or done for long periods in order to improve your health. Walking is low impact, requires minimal equipment, can be done at any time of day and can be performed at your own pace. You can get out and walk without worrying about the risks associated with some more vigorous forms of exercise. Walking is also a great form of physical activity for people who are overweight, elderly, or who haven’t exercised in a long time. Walking for fun and fitness isn’t limited to strolling by yourself around local neighbourhood streets - although I have to admit this is something I've done mostly during Lockdown. There are various clubs, venues and strategies you can use to make walking an enjoyable and social part of your lifestyle. By walking more than 7000 steps a day Vitality rewards me with points. I always try to aim for over 12,500 and I usually smash that most days. Although the odd rainy day or lazy day can scupper that but we are all human. The points I get from Vitality health insurance reward me each week with Rakuten Movie Vouchers, Cineworld & VUE Cinema Vouchers, Amazon Prime Membership, discounted Gym Membership and free Coffees from Caffe Nero. Why would I have private health insurance in a country that has a National Health Service - well if you have ever had to use the NHS and I have in my life history. As hard-working as the Doctors and Nurses are, the NHS is not going to get you seen fast enough should you have a serious problem. Imagine the worst-case scenario that something bad suddenly happens to you and you need an operation. Well, sadly with the NHS you are going to have to wait your turn. My family who worships the cult of the NHS as they have all worked for the NHS will claim it to be a wonderful service but the reality is I'm convinced various members of my family have died because the NHS didn't do enough for them. If they had been private they may have lived a little longer and certainly would have been more comfortable. In my mind, by having private health insurance you are going to be seen in speed and this speed could be the difference between life and death. I rarely recommend companies but in the case of Vitality Health insurance, I am very happy to stick my neck out and make a personal recommendation. I had a health scare a while back and Vitality got me seen by the right people in no time at all. It turned out there was nothing to worry about but if I had waited to find out that information with the NHS I would have been waiting for months to be seen and yet with Vitality I was seen within a day and I was given the OK within weeks. That peace of mind and knowing you are in good hands is worth the premium alone but the rewards I get from staying active make the financial burden pain free. If you would like to join Vitality Health Insurance use this link and you will be rewarded with either a £50 John Lewis or Amazon voucher depending on your preference. Use this code 226D6 when signing up to Vitality. An example of how I earn my Vitality Reward points - I take a daily walk. A recent daily walk found me walking between Hammersmith Bridge & Putney Bridge along the south side of the Thames - join me for that one on one interaction where I talk about anything and everything. So what are the Health Benefits fo walking? You carry your own body weight when you walk. This is known as weight-bearing exercise. Some of the benefits include: increased cardiovascular and pulmonary (heart and lung) fitness reduced risk of heart disease and stroke improved management of conditions such as hypertension (high blood pressure), high cholesterol, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and diabetes stronger bones and improved balance increased muscle strength and endurance reduced body fat. So better health and free things if you have Vitality health insurance it's a win-win if you take a long walk every day. And of course during this time where the world around you is a Petri Dish I recommend you combine these long walks with a well-balanced diet but also vitamins. Some will say if your diet is balanced then you will get all the vitamins you need. However, as your body filters out anything you do not need I'm of the philosophy that it's better to have an oversupply of vitamins going into your body than a lack of supply. Obviously depending on your needs will depend on what vitamins you need. To keep my energy levels up I take B12 Supplements & Multi-Vitamins. And I try my best to get a enough sunshine so my body can produce vitamin D as this is linked to keeping a stronger immune system. Crucial when your body is fighting off Covid-19 which I'm convinced I did a couple of months back now. If you would like to check out other walks in my YouTube series I'll post some of the videos down below. In this one, I take in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv and walk from the Centre to the Podil District. And Part 2 of that walk follows as it's best to break up long video walks sometimes! And a slightly different video next where I walk in the footsteps of the Techno Viking in the centre of Berlin - reliving one of the greatest Memes that ever graced the internet. And previously discussed on this blog. So, keep walking and keep progressing!

Tartu Estonia - A weekend destination that is closer than you might think

Estonia gets a little bit of a raw deal sometimes (at least in my mind). Its people have to put up with the Arctic weather in the winter, being used by the EU & NATO for political purposes and constantly having to look over their shoulder as they get that feeling that Russia wants to take them back. It can't be easy being in this constant tug of war while getting frostbite! However, if we can ignore the icy cold weather the political posturing by Global Governments then we as keen travellers can look at Estonia as a destination that must be explored. I've visited the Northern European Baltic country a few times now and each time hasn't disappointed despite the brisk cold winds that do your nose and ears no favours. Estonia, a country in Northern Europe, borders the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Finland. It includes more than 1,500 islands, its diverse terrain spans rocky beaches, old-growth forest and many lakes. Formerly part of the Soviet Union, it's dotted with castles, churches and hilltop fortresses. The capital, Tallinn, is known for its preserved Old Town, museums and the 314m-high Tallinn TV Tower, which has an observation deck. There are 47 towns in Estonia, many of these locations were known by their German or Russian names before 1918, which were occasionally quite different from the ones used by Estonians. After the annexation of Estonia by the Soviet Union in 1940, the Estonian names were used in Russian, leading to the use of some incorrect back-transliterations in Russian (e.g., Vilyandi, Pylva rather the correct Viljandi, Põlva). The five biggest towns in Estonia are 1.Tallinn 2.Tartu 3.Narva 4.Pärnu 5.Kohtla-Järve I've had the pleasure to visit 3 out of the 5 of those cities. The ones highlighted to be more specific which will send you to my relevant YouTube adventures.

Of course, you should visit Tallinn it's the capital of Estonia - but to overlook Tartu would be a serious mistake. Tartu for the moment at least is off the beaten track as it receives a fraction of the number of visitors Tallinn does. A suggestion from this traveller would be to check it out for a weekend. However, if there is no direct flight to Tartu how do you get there? Unless you are Finnish, from St Petersburg or Latvia you are most likely going to be flying to Estonia. Tallinn is pretty much the one airport you will be needing to fly into if visiting anywhere in Estonia due to the small size of the country. Tallinn Airport is served by most of Europes major Airlines and depending on where you are flying from you are more than likely to be able to pick up a good deal if planned ahead. Kayak, Google Flights and Skyscanner should be the go-to websites for searching for the best flight deals. However, my personal favourite for European flight deals is Skyscanner. For some reason, Skyscanner works best when searching for European Flights over any of its rivals. Upon arriving at Tallinn airport, what is the best way to get from Tallinn to Tartu in the south of the country? Thankfully for you, I made a very short video explaining exactly that predicament. Getting from Tallinn Airport to Tartu. To truly understand the city of Tartu you really need 2-3 days. And given its size staying anywhere around the city will suffice. There are a variety of options to pick from. Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally more choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback. Upon arriving in the city you will be drawn to the centre - Tartu's old historic centre. Tartu is very compact, with most sights, restaurants and nightlife nestled across a couple of parallel streets. Being the second largest town in Estonia and a hotbed for creative and scientific culture, there is always something on from theatre performances to concerts and festivals. However, if you have the legs and you like to run or walk long distances do not hesitate in exploring the outskirts of the city to really get a real feel for the city. If you are curious about how I explored it the first time I visited the city - here is a video showing exactly that. Strangely this video was well received by a resident Estonian they actually wrote an article about this very video. I have previously posted that article here. Although the Original can be found here on the Foreign Policy Website. As you can see from that video it's clear I enjoyed the city of Tartu on my first visit. However, a discovered far much more on my second visit. A place I grew fond of while staying in the centre of Tartu on my second visit was an amazing little bar hidden in a basement called DeTolly õllebaar. This hidden gem (although probably not that hidden as it's right on De Tolly Square) is a must-visit if you are a fan of craft beers. The selection was immense and any man who loves the amber nectar could spend a lot of time and money here getting to know all these exceptional beers they have on tap and in bottles. Obviously while in Estonia try as many Estonian beers as possible, and yes the Estonian Craft breweries make some fantastic beer. I'm glad I made it to Estonias National Museum when I next visited Tartu. It's a National Museum all Politicians around the world should visit. Why? You may ask! Well, Estonia's National Museum celebrates the rich history of the Estonian people it celebrates their identity and it celebrates their country. Unlike many western governments who have been overrun by Leftists intent on erasing history and Globalists intent on erasing borders and identity, this museum celebrates everything Estonia. The Estonian people I'm sure are very proud of this immense Museum that was once a Soviet Bomber base. I was certainly very impressed by the wonders they put on display. An essential visit for everyone while in Tartu! One suggestion before you visit Estonia and any nation that you are not connected with would be to try and learn a little bit of the local lingo. Yes, the majority of people in Estonia speak English but saying "Tere!", "Palun" & "Aitäh" will go a long way in terms of getting more warmth from the Estonian people and also endearing yourself to them more. I recommend learning a second or sixth language with Rosetta Stone. They do amazing online courses for beginners to experts in every language you could possibly want to learn including Estonian! I hope you have a great time in Tartu Estonia should you visit. I am not sponsored by the Estonian Government or any Travel Group I simply have written this post as I enjoy travelling. Please do check out this blog for more independent travel ideas and my YouTube Channel. And if any of this information has been useful to you and you fancy buying me a Coffee please do click the link below to buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi.com Thanks very much! Stay safe & keep Progressing! The Wondering Englishman.

Sardina known for its sandy beaches and hiking trails but you would be wrong to ignore Cagliari

With just under a half a million known inhabitants Cagliari is the 26th largest city in Italy and of course the largest city on the island of Sardinia. Cagliari the capital of Sardinia or Casteddu the Sardinian name literally means castle. For a brief weekend, this fine city would be this Englishman's castle. It would be my first time visiting this ancient city although as you will learn I hope it would not be my last. I found myself delving into the long history of this ancient city. I discovered it wasn't just I who grew fond of this now Italian city but several civilisations who came before I. As far back as the Neolithic age there's evidence of civilisation here - some have speculated due to the findings related to the Giants of Sardina civilisation may even predate this time. More of the Giants in my video and lower down the page. Historical sites include the prehistoric Domus de Janas, very damaged by cave activity, a large Carthaginian era necropolis, a Roman-era amphitheatre, a Byzantine basilica, three Pisan-era towers and a strong system of fortification that made the town the core of Spanish Habsburg imperial power in the western Mediterranean Sea. Its natural resources have always been its sheltered harbour, the often powerfully fortified hill of Castel di Castro, the modern Casteddu, the salt from its lagoons, and, from the hinterland, wheat from the Campidano plain and silver and other ores from the Iglesiente mines. Today the city is a regional cultural, educational, political and artistic centre, known for its diverse Art Nouveau architecture and several monuments. It is also Sardinia's economic and industrial hub, having one of the biggest ports in the Mediterranean Sea, an international airport, and an income level in Italy comparable to that of several northern Italian cities. Venice, Florence, Rome & Milan are cities you would think of when seeking an Italian city break and you wouldn't be wrong in seeking out these cities. Although if I had to pick my favourite from the four mentioned I would argue Florence must be seen if you see only one. However, another person would most likely pick another and their friend may pick another as this is just personal preference. What would rarely come into the equation is the case for Cagliari - now while I would never argue Cagliari is superior to any of these cities (well maybe Milan). It would be a rare day that anyone would fight in that corner and I'm going to bet many simply won't have it on their radar. Well, I'm hoping that will soon change as you are made more aware of this ancient city while you direct this post and my various YouTube Videos on my Channel The Wondering Englishman.

One of the most beautiful Cathedrals in Europe is to be found in Cagliari and this alone could be a reason to visit and I'm sure the Sardinia tourist board (I am not sponsored by them or anyone) will tell you the same. Cagliari Cathedral (Duomo di Cagliari, Cattedrale di Santa Maria e Santa Cecilia) is a Roman Catholic cathedral dedicated to the Virgin Mary and to Saint Cecilia. It was built in the 13th century in Pisan-Romanesque style, obtaining cathedral status in 1258. In the 17th and 18th centuries, it was renovated along Baroque lines. In the 1930s it finally received the current façade, in Neo-Romanesque style, inspired by Pisa Cathedral. Just in case you never make it there - here is a short clip of this magnificent Cathedral. Of course, no weekend break to any Italian city would be complete without diving into all the glorious food. Many will rank Italian food as the best in the world - I think controversially it's a close tie between French, Italian & English (don't laugh until you have really tried it!). Cagliari has a huge advantage being well placed in the Mediterranean so capable of providing all budgets with some of the finest Mediterranean seafood. From buying it fresh in the numerous markets dotted around the city to getting an accomplished Sardinian chef to cook you up something tasty. In my mind, at least, no Italian food binge is complete without devouring fresh magnificent pasta. I feel sorry for those who avoid carbs or those who claim they can't eat Gluton because they will be missing out on something genuinely wonderful while visiting any Italian city. When in Cagliari I discovered a marvellous Pasta restaurant perfect for a quick lunch and those on a budget. It was called Zio Tom Pasta. It features in my long-form video on the city - titled "24 Hours in Cagliari". Of course, there is far more to Cagliari than food and Cathedrals and the one place that stood out for me was the Archaeological Museum where the Giants of Sardinia are on display. The Giants of Mont'e Prama to be more precise are ancient stone sculptures thought by mainstream Archaeologists to be created by the Nuragic civilization of Sardinia. However, those that subscribe to Ancient Astronaut theory suggest they may predate Neolithic civilisation by thousands of years - however this is a fringe idea that is sadly being overlooked by the majority of historians. The statues are fragmented into numerous pieces, they were found by accident in March 1974, in farmland near Mont'e Prama, in the comune of Cabras, Province of Oristano, in central-western Sardinia. The statues are carved in local sandstone and their height varies between 2 and 2.5 meters. My advice would be is to go see them and form your own opinion on where these Alien-like Giants came from. I could go on and on about everything Cagliari has to offer but I think it would be wiser to enjoy my video 24 Hours in Cagliari Sardinia - Travel Guide by an Englishman

Cagliari is served by a large number of Europes Airlines and depending on where you are flying from you are more than likely to be able to pick up a good deal if you plan ahead. Kayak, Google Flights and Skyscanner should be the go-to websites for searching for the best flight deals. However, my personal favourite for European flight deals is Skyscanner. For some reason, Skyscanner works best when searching for European Flights over any of its rivals. Over the years I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while travelling. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally more choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking and I'll get a very small referral kickback.

Thanks for reading - Keep Progressing - see you on my YouTube Channel!

Riga - Latvia - Weekend Travel Guide

The climate of Riga is humid continental. The coldest months are January and February when the average temperature is −5 °C (23 °F) but temperatures as low as −20 to −25 °C (−4 to −13 °F) can be observed almost every year on the coldest days. The proximity of the sea causes frequent autumn rains and fogs. Continuous snow cover may last eighty days. The summers in Riga are mild and rainy with an average temperature of 18 °C (64 °F), while the temperature on the hottest days can exceed 30 °C (86 °F). Early May to late October is generally regarded as the best time visit by most seasoned Travellers. However, as long as you bring a warm jacket and expect it to be cold the winters can be just as good. One of the places I recently visited while in Riga went by the name of "The House of the BlackHeads". I have to admit this place really stood out for me and I found myself captivated by its history. The House of the Blackheads is a building situated in the old town of Riga, Latvia. The original building was erected during the first third of the 14th century for the brotherhood of Blackheads, a guild for unmarried merchants, shipowners, and foreigners in Riga. Maybe it was the mystique of the place or maybe it was the fact that it was started by travellers that drew me into the place but drawn in I certainly was. Here is that video where I visit the Blackheads House. Little old Riga although it is actually the biggest city in all the Baltics. Home to a third of Latvia's population and a city that should be visited by all those that enjoy European travel destinations. It's also a city I've frequented many times either for business, tourism or simply visiting friends. I am Alex van Terheyden & I am passionate about travel, immersing myself in other cultures and have the belief that all Nations are unique and worthy of one's time. I recently made a series of videos for my YouTube Channel The Wondering Englishman about intriguing Riga.

The Wondering Englishman's YouTube channel consists of various adventures from around the world.
He "wonders" what a place may be like and then sets off on an adventure to find out. Bringing the viewer and his loyal subscribers along for the ride. I'm incorporating the recent Riga Videos into this article so it's your one-stop-shop for some essential Riga action. This post will be updated when new videos are sure to be made about this destination. Riga was founded way back in 1201 and is a former Hanseatic League member. In 2020, Riga has a population of just under 700,000 it receives double that in the number of visitors each year (1.5million) and it is only going to grow over the up and coming years. Riga is served by most of Europes major Airlines and depending on where you are flying from you are more than likely to be able to pick up a good deal if planned ahead. Kayak, Google Flights and Skyscanner should be the go-to websites for searching for the best flight deals. However, my personal favourite for European flight deals is Skyscanner. For some reason, Skyscanner works best when searching for European Flights over any of its rivals. The city is served by Riga International Airport, the largest and busiest airport in the Baltic states. And it is from that airport where most of you will enter Riga should you visit for a weekend. Here is my advice on getting to the centre. One theory about the origin of the name Riga is that it is a corrupted borrowing from the Liv rings meaning loop, referring to the ancient natural harbour formed by the tributary loop of the Daugava River. The river Daugava has been a trade route since antiquity, part of the Vikings' Dvina-Dnieper navigation route to Byzantium. A sheltered natural harbour 15 km (9.3 mi) upriver from the mouth of the Daugava — the site of today's Riga. And it is this river that has served the people of Riga for centuries with goods and one of the finest examples of this service can be found at the Biggest Market in the world (yes it is actually in Riga Latvia). This is Riga's City Market. The Gothic spires that dominate Riga's cityscape might suggest austerity, but it is the flamboyant art nouveau that forms the flesh and the spirit of this vibrant cosmopolitan city. Like a lot of Northern European cities, it is quiet and reserved on the outside, but there is some powerful chemistry going on inside its hip bars, modern art centres and the kitchens of its cool experimental restaurants. If you have a fondness for food then you won't come away disappointed from a weekend in Latvia. My advice as restaurants are forever changing I would refer to TripAdvisors' Top Restaurants list when in Latvia. Download the app onto your smartphone and have Riga available in offline mode that way you won't be incurring any roaming fees if your data plan doesn't allow Latvian data. Yelp does not serve the city well and is biased towards American travel tastes hence steer towards TripAdvisor which is clearly more used if you took the time like I did to compare the two while there. Over the years, I've had the fortune to stay in an array of hotels, apartments and various forms of accommodation while visiting Latvia. For the majority of travellers, I recommend Booking.com - yes, there are hotel comparison websites such as Trivago and Kayak. However, from my years of travel experience, I've discovered both of these comparison websites do not have all the hotels, hostels and apartments listed. The reasons behind this could be some premises simply do not pay the comparison sights a fee or the reason could be something else. If you know of the reason, do leave a comment below. However, I have discovered no matter what the location Booking.com will 9/10ths of the time have the most competitive deal and generally more choice. However, if you are super keen to get the best deal- use Booking.com, Kayak, Trivago, Lastiminute.com and Hotels.com in separate browser windows. An alternative which I do recommend for your accommodation is Airbnb. The city authorities still allow Airbnb in the city (it hasn't been banned just yet). I've booked a number of apartments via Airbnb. If you have not used them before (you have probably been living under a rock). But if you use this referral link you will get many Dollars or Euros off your first booking, and I'll get a very small referral kickback. Riga has since its Inception sat at the crossroads of the great empires that wrote the pages of Europe’s elaborate history, Riga was – for centuries – a strategic linchpin in the annexation of important lands, until it was smothered into obscurity when the Iron Curtain fell. During its time in the Soviet Union, it experienced a changing population. Russians moved into Latvia while Latvian dissidents were often made to disappear. One of the museums in the city that give a snapshot into the dark years of the Soviet occupation is found where the KGB used to be headquartered. Though the museum does need updating it is a valuable source of information for those unfamiliar with KGB tactics and the atrocities that went on under communism. The most vibrant time of year in Riga is probably around over the summer solstice (23 and 24 June), Ligo and Jani are Riga’s most important days, celebrated with deep pagan undertones. Though most city dwellers flock to the countryside for bonfires, beers and naked frolicking, the capital remains lively, with parades and locals dressed in traditional garb. When not celebrating Pagan festivals Latvians love to drink good beer and decent cocktails in the numerous pubs and bars dotted around the city. And when Latvians and tourists want to party some more there is a wide selection of clubs to choose from. Although nothing to rival Berlin or Ibiza, the small city is still a fun place with the right company. Of course when your not out raving and drinking in the city you could be exploring the many museums in Riga or simply taking in the numerous sights. One of the more obscure museums I visited on my latest trip to Riga was the Video Games Museum. If you are a fan of Retro Gaming then this place has a huge selection of platforms to play and explore. From the humble ZX Spectrum, the game-changing Super Nintendo to Neo Geo arcade machines. The Video Games Museum called “Enjoy the Game”. It’s a privately run museum set up by the owner of the games shop that it sits below. The man’s love for Videos games and classic gaming systems is why it exists. The Museum is still growing - as they are a long way from having every system under the roof but it’s clear that they have made it as open and interactive as possible. Great for old gamers and new gamers who are seeking out to either relive the past or discover the wonders of the gaming past. My hope is this little museum continues to grow. I’m happy I’m able to bring you an insight into the world of video games - something that was a big part of my childhood and youth. Check out the video and go pay it a visit if you are a fan of video games. Enjoy the Game - Video Game Museum +371 27 028 464 Krišjāņa Barona iela 41/43, Centra rajons, Rīga, LV-1011, Latvia I'll try my best to update this post as I gather more information on Riga over time. More videos will likely follow as I visit to take in the town after the weaponised virus has retreated from the scene.

I was hesitant about posting the next video as it was done such a long time ago. However, this is the first video I made on the city of Riga. I would like to think it is more amateurish than my latest videos but I'm still learning as I go. Here is that video for prosperity purposes from 2017! Thanks for joining me - be sure to subscribe to my YouTube Channel for more current videos made in the 2020s!

©2020 by Alex van Terheyden  AKA   The Wondering Englishman