Lonely Planet: Hiking across Macedonia: finding remote contentment

At 3:30am, on the fifth day of an expedition along Macedonia’s mountainous western edge, we traded our trekking poles for reins and mounted horses in search of yet another peak. Headlamps spotlighted the steam from our breath mixed with the fidgety smoke of rolled cigarettes. We left Galičnik, a village tucked into the folds of […]

The New York Times: Hiking Beyond Borders in the Balkans

…Tomorrow we would follow that trail and slip virtually unnoticed into Albania. That would have been among the stupidest things you could do had it been the 1980s, when Albania was the North Korea of Europe. From World War II until his death in 1985, the Communist leader Enver Hoxha hammered Albania into an oppressive […]

The Guardian: Bulgaria’s hidden treasures

I’m laden with juicy fat cherries, freshly plucked from the tree. The sun shines and we’re picnicking among spangles of wild flowers and long grasses. A track steers back to the wood-beamed house where we are staying, past mud-and-timber houses tilting back into the earth. It’s peaceful and bucolic, and far from the cheap-and-cheerful skiing or […]