hidden europe

Exploring cultures and communities – the slow way

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Magazine article

Visa News

A chance to visit Belarus without a visa, and a tweak to the visa regulations in the Russian port of Murmansk are just two of the latest changes to visa regimes in ...
Letter from Europe

Ship Talk: From the Kattegat to the Crimea

  • 19 Mar 2014
Many travellers through Denmark this summer will be sorry to discover that the long-standing direct ferry from Kalundborg (on Sjælland) to Aarhus (on Jutland) has been axed. This is just one of many routes to disappear in the latest round of cuts ...
Magazine article

The Caucasus dimension
  

Georgians have high hopes for the Lithuanian Presidency of the European Union - a six-month term that started this month. Georgia, like Lithuania, slipped out of the Soviet Union in 1991. The hopes in Tbilisi are that Lithania will open European ...
Magazine article

Asia in the mind
  

We start with a dubious attribution, a few words allegedly uttered by the Austrian diplomat and politician Count Metternich. And we end with the Ukrainian poet and dramatist Lesya Ukrainka in Georgia. In between, we discover that Asia is a state of ...
The world clock on Berlin’s Alexanderplatz (photo © Patrick Poendl / dreamstime.com).
Magazine article

Timing matters
  

Russia's decision this year to abandon seasonal changes of clocks has prompted much media comment. Belarus has followed Russia's example. Ukraine, after much prevarication, has opted to stick with alternating winter and summer time. In this short ...
hidden europe note

The Black Sea Riviera by train

  • 15 Mar 2010
Europe has Rivieras aplenty. For many travellers, the word Riviera evokes images of the French coast from St Raphael to Menton. But we should not forget the Black Sea, which has along its north coast a Riviera style coastline that is surely the ...
hidden europe note

Lamb soup galore

  • 6 Mar 2010
Lamb soup is a staple in some parts of Europe, but utterly unknown elsewhere. In Iceland, lamb soup has the status of a national dish. That lamb soup was once judged to be the perfect remedy for dysentery was new to ...
Magazine article

Between two rivers: Abkhazia
  

Regular hidden europe correspondent Karlos Zurutuza ventures to parts of Europe that most of us would judge to be off-limits. Here he reports from Abkhazia, a not-quite-independent republic on the Black ...
Magazine article

Castles in the air: Svaneti
  

The breathtaking mountains of the High Caucasus tower over the upper Inguri valley, which is home to a rich but endangered culture. Karlos Zurutuza, a regular contributor to hidden europe, visits the Svaneti region of ...
Magazine article

A Caucasian knot: South Ossetia
  

In Tamarasheni, the clocks are set to Georgian time. Just down the road, the community of Tskhinval prefers Moscow time. All a matter of borders. But in South Ossetia every frontier is contested. Karlos Zurutuza reports from the quasi-state of ...
Magazine article

Election special

Tired of McCain and Obama? Fed up with Sarah Palin's take on foreign policy? We have the perfect antidote with a hidden eruope round up of elections from Iceland to Malta, the Czech Republic to ...
Magazine article

Rallying support for the nation
  

In western Europe, long distance car rallies of the inter-war years came to symbolise glitz and glamour. Just think of the Monte Carlo rally. Meanwhile, in the Soviet Union the car rally became an important tool in the building of socialism. We ...
Letter from Europe

Abkhazia - the Adler connection

  • 5 Mar 2009
If Abkhazia were more secure and better promoted, it would surely be a holiday paradise to match anywhere in the Mediterranean. It was a favourite with Soviet leaders. The area is spectacular with serene beaches backed by meadows, orchards and ...
Letter from Europe

Thoughts on Russia

  • 31 Aug 2008
Russian perceptions of Europe are much in the news this month in the wake of Moscow's response to the Tbilisi government's ill-considered adventure in South Ossetia. And yet Russian popular perceptions are shaped not merely by Kremlin dictates but ...
Letter from Europe

Minorities around the Black Sea

  • 19 Apr 2006
The Black Sea region bristles with diaspora curiosities, and, in an earlier issue of hidden europe magazine (in July 2005), we explored Estonian villages in the breakaway province of Abkhazia in northwest Georgia. In the upcoming issue of the ...