Rick Steves' Europe
A fresh perspective on the best travel advice, including where to stay, what to see and how to get around. Rick shares the latest on sightseeing in the grand cities of Europe, and offers a vivid local perspective on off-the-beaten path locations.
South Ireland: Waterford to the Ring of Kerry (#209H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
We find the story of Ireland strewn along its fascinating south coast: Waterford's much-loved crystal factory; the Kennedy family homestead; the Dunbrody famine ship; and Kinsale's star-shaped fortresses. After learning why locals don't kiss the Blarney Stone, we savor the scenic charms of the Emerald Isle-driving the Ring of Kerry.
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The Best of West Ireland: Dingle, Galway, and the Aran Islands (#210H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Ireland in the extreme is best experienced on its west coast in Gaeltachts, where the people speak Gaelic and the rugged villages have changed little over the generations. After exploring the rugged and remote Aran Islands, we settle into Galway, dance in a castle at a medieval folk banquet and delve into Ireland in the extreme: Dingle Peninsula. Ringing with traditional music from its rustic pubs, dotted with prehistoric "fairy forts," if you'll fall in love with Ireland, chances are it'll be right here.
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Berlin: Resilient, Reunited, and Reborn (#211H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Berlin is back, resuming its place as a great European capital. We climb the Reichstag's new glass dome, sway at a modern-day cabaret, and pop a few chocolates in the now thriving eastern sector. Along with Germany's finest art, complicated Berlin also has hidden remnants of its fascist and communist past. In a city that's rebounding and rebuilding, we crane our necks at Europe's newest Times Square-Potsdamer Platz.
- KQED Life: Wed, Mar 4, 2015 -- 9:00am email reminder
Germany's Romantic Rhine and Rothenburg (#212H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Cruising the Rhine River, we dodge riverboat traffic and the legendary siren, Lorelei. After climbing castles and descending into dungeons, we relax with Rhine wine. We tour Burg Eltz-a lived-in castle where the noble lady still puts out fresh flowers. Then we enter the walled town of Rothenburg for Germany's best wood carving, a vivid dose of medieval punishment, and a tour with the night watchman of the town's lamp-lit ramparts.
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Italy's Veneto: Verona, Padua, and Ravenna (#808() Duration: 53:00 STEREO TVG
In the shadow of Venice, we visit three great cities. Padua is famed for its venerable university, precious Giotto frescoes, and pilgrim-packed Basilica. Verona is a hit with aficionados of Roman ruins and Romeo and Juliet fans. And Ravenna, with its shimmering mosaics, was once the western bastion of the Byzantine Empire. We enliven each stop with a tasty dose of Italian dolce vita.
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Munich and the Foothills of the Alps (#213H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
In Munich, where locals specialize in good living, we visit boisterous markets and go for Baroque palaces...while office workers surf in the Isar River. Heading into the foothills of the Alps, we take a spin around a Maypole; drop by Oberammergau-the Shirley Temple of Bavarian villages; and tour the fairy-tale castles of "Mad" King Ludwig. After hiking up to a desolate ruined castle, we soar even higher in a glider over the Tyrol.
- KQED Life: Mon, Mar 9, 2015 -- 9:00am email reminder
The Netherlands Beyond Amsterdam (#810() Duration: 25:00 STEREO TVG
By train, bike, and boat, we visit the top Dutch sights outside of Amsterdam: from Haarlem to Rotterdam, and from Delft to the Zuiderzee. Along the way, we enjoy charming towns with fragrant cheese markets, soggy polderland, mighty dikes, and windmills both new and old. Rolling through the Netherlands and connecting with its people, you can't help but think, "Everything's so... Dutch!"
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Paris Side-Trips (#804() Duration: 24:59 STEREO TVG
Side-tripping from Paris into the Ile-de-France, we indulge in the world of royal and aristocratic extravagance in the pre-Revolutionary playground of France's elite. We explore Versailles, Europe's palace of palaces; exquisite Vaux le Vicomte; and extravagant Fontainebleau, home to centuries of French rulers. We'll also marvel at the glass and statuary of Chartres cathedral and dine like kings.
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France's Loire: Chateau Country (#803() Duration: 40:00 STEREO TVG
Along the Loire River Valley, the beautiful French countryside is studded with evocative chateaux. Home-basing in Amboise, we visit four unique castles: elegant Chenonceau, massive Chambord, stately Cheverny, and fragrant Villandry. Along the way, we tour Leonardo's home, feed hunting dogs, enjoy the local cuisine, and savor a princely garden.
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Italy's Riviera: Cinque Terre (#807() Duration: 41:59 STEREO TVG
Exploring Italy's most remote and romantic stretch of Riviera, we visit five tiny port towns: dramatic Vernazza, surrounded by vineyards; reclusive Corniglia, high on its bluff; pastel Manarola; hardscrabble Riomaggiore; and the pint-sized resort of Monterosso. Fishing for anchovies, sipping wine out of rustic barrels, and savoring twinkling Mediterranean vistas, we enjoy the ultimate Riviera adventure.
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Switzerland's Jungfrau Region: Best of the Alps (#214H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
If Heidi is alive, she's in this sky-high corner of the Swiss Alps, with cows on breathtaking ridges. After settling into a traditional village where locals scythe hay by hand, we hike, bike, and parasail. We blast an alphorn, get sprayed by waterfalls raging deep inside a mountain, and munch muesli for breakfast at 10,000 feet. For a finale, we ride Europe's highest lift up the mighty Jungfrau for hot cocoa, glacier sledding, and oh-wow views.
- KQED Life: Tue, Mar 10, 2015 -- 9:00am email reminder
The Majesty of Madrid (#301H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Madrid is studded with riches from its glory days. We tour the lavish Royal Palace, enjoy art-packed museums, and look deep into Picasso's greatest masterpiece. Experiencing Madrid at its fun-loving best, we' re mesmerized by flamenco dancers and munch on pigs' ears. Then, for a dose of Spain's dramatic history, we side-trip to El Escorial and the Valley of the Fallen.
Highlights of Castile: Toledo and Salamanca (#302H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Castile sparkles with Roman Segovia, walled Avila, student-filled Salamanca, and holy Toledo! We marvel at El Greco, pop some explosive pickles, and ramble Spain's most awe-inspiring medieval walls. Then, just for fun, we drop in on a bachelorette party with local troubadours, slice and savor tasty jamon, stroll with the crowd, and grab a front-row seat to enjoy Europe's most enchanting square.
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Amsterdam (#809H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Europe's best-preserved 17th-century city, Amsterdam is quaint and jarring, traditional and modern. Filled with history and happy-go-lucky, it's a delight to explore. Uniquely entertaining Amsterdam shows us Rembrandts and Van Goghs, more bikes than cars, flirting prostitutes, and pot-filled coffeeshops - all under tall, skinny facades leaning out below quaint church towers.
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Normandy: War-Torn Yet Full of Life (#303H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
After exploring the half-timbered charm of Rouen, we reflect on Monet's lily ponds, peek in on local artisans, and set up an easel at Honfleur's harbor. We venture into composer Eric Satie's eccentric world and feast on the finest of Normandy cuisine. After pondering sacrifice and celebrating freedom on the D-Day beaches, we hike with pilgrims to the enchanted island abbey of Mont St. Michel.
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Belfast and the Best of Northern Ireland (#304H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
No trip to Emerald Isle is complete without a visit to Northern Ireland. We tour bustling Belfast, sneaking a peek at its politically charged neighborhoods. Then we head for the Antrim Coast and go wild in Portrush, Ulster's Coney Island. We taste-test Irish whiskey, scramble over six-sided rock columns, putter through a world-class golf course, and stomp our feet to Irish music in rough-and- tumble Derry.
London: Mod and Trad (#305H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
London is quintessentially English, yet cosmopolitan. We check out the new - the Millennium Bridge and the British Museum's Great Court, and admire the old - well-wrapped mummies and a rare Leonardo. After bantering with Beefeaters at the Tower of London, we do some riverside beach-combing. Strolling the trendy South Bank of the Thames takes us from the Tate Modern to the dizzying London Eye.
Highlights of Paris: Eiffel and Monet to Creme Brulee (#306H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Packing the best of Paris into one episode, we scale the Eiffel Tower, then savor classic treats - from steak tartare to creme brulee. We marvel at Monet, Manet and company in the stunning Orsay Gallery. Tracing the sad steps of Marie Antoinette, we relive French history from its bloody revolution to its extravagant belle epoch.
Belgium: Bruges and Brussels (#307H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Belgium is a land of contrasts. From the powerhouse headquarters of the European Union and Europe's grandest square in big-city Brussels, we go quaint with delicate lace and back lane bike rides in small- town Bruges. We check into a medieval hospital, savor the exquisite art of Memling, and climb a bell tower to get up close and fortissimo at a carillon concert. Then passionate chefs - creators of French fries and Europe's finest chocolate-give us a taste of their art.
Provence: Legendary Light, Wind and Wine (#308H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Provence, known for its soft light and fierce wind, is as loved by Americans as it is by the sun. We climb Roman ruins in Nimes, explore a papal palace in Avignon, and savor vivid views immortalized by van Gogh in Arles. Crossing acres of wispy vineyards, we explore the Cotes du Rhone and more wonders of the South of France.
French Riviera: Uniquely Chic (#309H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
A longtime favorite escape of Europe's elite, the Riviera coastline still sparkles with yachts. We follow in the footsteps of 19th century aristocrats along Monaco's harbor and Nice's promenade des Anglais. Then we visit the picturesque, artist hangouts of Chagall, Matisse and Picasso.
Poland Rediscovered: Krakow, Auschwitz and Warsaw (#310H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Poland is ready to be rediscovered as the old "east" transforms itself into the new heart of Europe. Krakow, with its bubbly Baroque and cobbled charm, is emerging as the exciting "next Prague." Nearby, a visit to Auschwitz teaches us a timeless, soul-searching lesson. Systematically destroyed during World War II, Warsaw is a lively, thriving capital once again.
Prague (#811H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
The capital of the Czech Republic, Prague is the best-preserved Baroque city in Central Europe. We experience its massive castle, beloved statue-lined bridge, evocative Jewish Quarter, and thrilling 20th-century history while enjoying its infectious love of music and perhaps the best beer in Europe. With a beautifully preserved Old Town, Prague deserves its nickname: the Golden City of a Hundred Spires.
Budapest: The Best of Hungary (#311H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Budapest, once Vienna's partner in ruling the Austro-Hungarian empire, feels like the capital of Eastern Europe. It's actually two cities- busy Pest and noble Buda-straddling the Danube and laced together by mighty bridges. Capitalism has taken hold with gusto as shopping boulevards thrive and stone Lenins and cast iron Stalins litter a theme park at the edge of town. Today Gypsy orchestras feature smoking violins, venerable mineral baths are the rage, and 19th century coffeehouses enjoy a renaissance.
- KQED Life: Mon, Mar 30, 2015 -- 9:00am email reminder
Lisbon and the Algarve (#312H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Experiencing the best of Portugal, we start in Lisbon, a ramshackle mix of glorious old and fun-loving new. Salty sailors' quarters and wistful Fado singers mix with ornate architecture to recall the glory days when Vasco da Gama and Magellan made Portugal a world power. Then we head for the south coast of your travel dreams-the Algarve. We explore the Land's End of Europe-windy and historic Cape Sagres before savoring pristine beaches and arm-wrestling octopi in the sleepy fishing village of Salema.
Sevilla (#313H) Duration: 27:46 STEREO TVG
Sevilla is the flamboyant city of Carmen and Don Juan. It's where bullfighting is still politically correct and where little girls dream of growing up to become flamenco dancers. Sevilla has soul-and we feel it in its lacy Moorish palace, massive cathedral, lavish royal tombs, labyrinthine Jewish quarter, and its people-filled streets. After munching tasty tapas, we head south for Andalusia's ultimate whitewashed hilltown, Arcos de la Frontera.
- KQED Life: Wed, Apr 1, 2015 -- 12:00am email reminder
England's Bath & York (#401H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Medieval York and Georgian Bath - easy side-trips from London - pack an exciting pair of sightseeing punches. Rick explores Roman hot springs, cruises quiet canals, marvels at England's finest Gothic church and gets a surprising dose of Viking history as he enjoys England's easy urban delights.
Berlin (#812H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
A tumultuous 20th century left Berlin filled with powerful sights - from evocative memorials, to surviving bits of its communist and fascist days, to its glass-domed Reichstag. We enjoy its now-trendy east side, its people-friendly riverfront, and its vibrant social scene. Reunited Berlin - perhaps the fastest changing and most happening city in Europe - is entertaining more visitors than ever.
Burgundy: Profound France (#501H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Burgundy is a calm and cultivated corner of France, where nature is as sophisticated as the people. Traditions are strong here. We'll slow down to enjoy the region's edible, drinkable, scenic, and floatable delights. We'll travel on a canal barge, visit a medieval hospice and a modern monastery, build a barrel, appreciate fine Burgundy wine, slurp escargot, and eat very, very well. If you're looking for the quintessential French culture, you'll find it in Burgundy.
North Wales: Feisty and Poetic (#402H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
From towering Mount Snowdon, to evocative medieval castles, to sweeping Victorian promenades, North Wales is a poem written in landscape. We'll climb a mountain aboard a steam train, learn some Welsh, follow a miner deep into a slate mine, herd sheep with a very clever dog, and work in a pop pilgrimage to the Beatles' Liverpool.
- KQED Life: Mon, Apr 6, 2015 -- 12:00am email reminder
Edinburgh (#403H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Edinburgh is the historical and cultural heart of Scotland. We'll explore the castle, peek at the new parliament, dabble in the local literature, sip a little Scotch, get wrapped up in a kilt, and then stow away on Her Majesty's Yacht Britannia.
- KQED Life: Tue, Apr 7, 2015 -- 12:00am email reminder
Naples and Pompeii (#404H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Naples is Italy in the extreme. We'll prowl backstreet fish markets, dodge fast-moving Vespas, and dine on pizza where it was invented. We'll climb to the top of nearby Mount Vesuvius, then wander through the amazing ruins of Pompeii, the Roman town it destroyed.
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Italy's Amalfi Coast (#405H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Just south of Naples we'll experience the breath-taking Amalfi Coastline, the trendy resort of Positano, the limoncello charms of Sorrento, the ancient Greek temples at Paestum, and the iridescent Blue Grotto hidden beneath the enchanting isle of Capri.
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Rome: Ancient Glory (#701H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Part 1 of 3 on the Eternal City, this episode resurrects the rubble and brings back to life the capital of the ancient world. Focusing on the grandeur of classical Rome, we marvel at the Colosseum, the Pantheon, and the empire's exquisite art. Then we go offbeat by bicycle to see the Appian Way and marvels of Roman engineering.
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Milan and Lake Como (#406H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
No trip to Italy is complete without Milan and Lake Como. In Milan we'll take a peek at Italy's highest fashion, fanciest delis, grandest cemetery and greatest opera house - not to mention Leonardo's Last Supper. Then we'll cruise along Lake Como, settling down in the lakeside village of Varenna, classic honeymoon country, where Italy meets the Alps.
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Tuscany's Dolce Vita (#407H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
The small towns and rural charms of Tuscany give us a healthy dose of the "sweet life" as we hunt for truffles in an oak forest, nibble through an artichoke festival, share a farmhouse feast, and ride a classic convertible through the cypress groves of Mona Lisa's back yard.
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Italy's Great Hill Towns (#408H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Connoisseurs of Italy find that its quintessential charms survive in its classic hill towns. From San Gimignano's medieval towers, to Cortona's charming lanes, to Orvieto's papal intrigue, to Civita di Bagnoregio's cliff-hanging vistas...all sit on lofty stone perches that now seem to protect them only from the modern world.
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Vienna (#409H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
In Europe's classiest capital we'll tiptoe through the palace of Maria Theresa and be dazzled by the Hapsburg crown jewels. Then we'll picnic on the Danube, nibble strudel in an old world cafe, blush at slinky Art Nouveau, and waltz to the three-four beat of Johann Strauss.
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Salzburg and Surroundings (#410H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
The birthplace of Mozart - and everyone's Sound of Music fantasies - Salzburg is a baroque jewel of a town. It's also the springboard for dozens of Alpine adventures, from thrilling summer bobsledding, to hikes around Hitler's old Eagles Nest hideout, to an idyllic boat ride on serene Lake Hallstatt.
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Rick Steves' Europe: The Making Of (#411H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
After 16 years and more than 100 travel shows, Rick and his crew take you behind the scenes to show you just how they produce this series. Joining the crew as they scamper through Milan and around Lake Como, you'll follow the creative process as the challenges and surprises that come with travel are shaped into a finished show.
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France's Dordogne (#502H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
The Dordogne River Valley with its dramatic castles, pre-historic cave paintings, and prized cuisine is an unforgettable blend of man-made and natural beauty. We'll take an idyllic canoe ride, visit a goose farm, then savor the foie gras. We'll also wander through a lamp-lit castle, enjoy a country market, and visit the Sistine Chapel of the prehistoric world. Then we head south to Albi, home of Toulouse Lautrec, and the imposing fortress city of Carcassonne.
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Barcelona and Catalunya (#503H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
The creative spirit of Spain's Catalunya the land of Picasso, Gaudi and Salvador Dali is on a roll. We'll get caught up in the festivity of Barcelona, enjoying the vibrant street scenes, tasty tapas and pedestrian-friendly Gothic Quarter. Then we'll take a scenic side trip to mountaintop Montserrat, and finish with an artist's pilgrimage along the Costa Brava to Salvador Dali country seaside Cadaques to visit his home and nearby Figures to experience his playfully surreal mausoleum/museum.
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Little Europe: San Marino, Monaco, Vatican City, Liechtenstein, and Andorra (#504H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
Don't blink as we blitz through Europe's tiniest countries: Vatican City, the world's smallest country, comes with the planet's biggest church. The fairytale princedom of Monaco lures visitors with its fancy casino and glamorous views. Italy's last independent hill town, San Marino still looks formidable, as does the castle-guarded principality of Liechtenstein. And tiny Andorra entertains shoppers and hikers alike, surrounded by the rugged beauty of the Pyrenees.
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Great Swiss Cities: Luzern, Bern, Zurich and Lausanne (#505H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
In this episode we'll focus on an often overlooked side of Switzerland its urban charms. We'll get some exercise, from ringing a very big bell to floating down an urban river. We'll also enjoy a variety of eye-opening art, from Chagall and Klee to inmates of an asylum. Then we'll ponder a few Swiss innovations, from their open-minded drug policies to their hush-hush underground arsenals. And it'll all before a backdrop of Switzerland's stunning natural beauty.
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Vienna and the Danube (#506H) Duration: 26:46 STEREO TVG
For centuries, Vienna was the crown jewel of the rich and powerful Habsburg Empire. A century after that empire's fall, the Viennese appreciates their imperial legacy as a cultural wellspring and an excuse to live in style. We'll take in the city's wealth of elegant gardens, great art and fine music. Then we'll explore the city's surroundings, with a trip along the romantic Danube River and a hike up to the breathtakingly Baroque Melk Abbey.
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