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What's ahead...

It is hard to believe that we are almost through the first half of 2017. So is there still more to look forward to on this page? 

Answer: Yes, LOTS!

We've been travelling in the past weeks, and here are some of the places we've visited. It will be fairly easy to recognise that they are all on one continent, but.....

...can you guess where each of these places are?

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Test yourself!

So we don't spoil the challenge, the answers will not be posted until later in the week, but do take notice of the hints we give you, beneath each picture. 

Go ahead and have fun!

#1 There are some buzzy workers here, but where did we find them, and why the artwork?

ANSWER: Believe it or not, these are beehives in Slovenia. The decorations are folk-art which tell ancient fables.

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#2 Easy to see whose mausoleum this is, but where did we find it?

ANSWER: This is Tito's mausoleum in Belgrade, capital of Serbia, in a memorial park to his life.

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#3 A city lookout - but which city, and what is the famous river?

ANSWER: Also Belgrade, the huge fortress overlooking the Danube which flows through the city.

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#4 Impossible to visit? No, there is a road on the far side of this cliff overlooking a lake.

ANSWER: And the lake is Lake Bled in Bled, Slovenia. Below, it is a 17th-century church on a tiny island.

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#5 Where did we find this tasty lunch outlet? One of the menu options is a clue.

ANSWER: Pljeskavika is a Balkan burger, found throughout Serbia andother Balkan countries. 

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#6 Far underground - not buried treasure, but immensely precious.

ANSWER: This crypt lies below the magificent white church of Saint Sava in Belgrade, Serbia.

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#7 A medieval windmill, located almost as far as you can get on this continent, near a sea with a colourful name.

ANSWER: It's the Black Sea and this is at the small holiday town of Nessebar in Bulgaria.

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#8 Not Venice, but gondoliers on these gondolas will take you to an island topped by a picture-book church.

ANSWER: The hint was in the Lake Bled castle answer (above). Take one of these boats to visit the fairytale island and church.

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#9 Good old St George fights his dragon as far from Britain as possible, still staying on the same continent.

ANSWER: A small church in Sozopol on the Black Sea in Bulgaria celebrates St George's victory.

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#10 One of two beautiful lakes in a country that has love in its name.

ANSWER: This stag holds sentry at lovely Lake Bohinj a few kilometres west of Lake Bled in Slovenia.

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#11 This tiny gem of a church is in a remote part of a formerly war-torn country.

ANSWER: Hidden on a back road in Bosnia is this 4th-century church.

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#12 A local bread tasted for the first time at a waterside restaurant. Recipe coming soon!

ANSWER: A hint ahead for #21, these sheep's milk yoghurt peksimeti from a restaurant in Blagaj, Bosnia, are unlike any other.

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#13 Best breakfast of the trip - in Croatia. But what is that black food? 

ANSWER: This was served at Pronto Cafe in Zadar, in northern Croatia.

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#14 Yes, these are edible, but what are they and where did we find them?

ANSWER: Not tennis balls, but bubble gum balls in several shops in Zadar, Croatia.

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#15 An egotistical dictator had many homes destroyed to have this built. What is it and where?

ANSWER: President Ceausescu had approximately 25 percent of homes in Bucharest, Romania, razed so that this Palace of the Parliament could be constructed.

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#16 This rock-hewn church is on the northern border of which country?

ANSWER: Northern Bulgaria has many such churches in the Ivanovo region near Ruse.

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#17 These singers have perfect pitch and a name that reminded us of a breed of dog.

ANSWER: These are some of Croatia's talented Dalmatian Singers who sing traditional local songs in many tourist centres.

Listen to them here....

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#18  This shiny city will be European Capital of Culture in 2019.

ANSWER: Plovdiv, Bulgaria, is on a roll and plans are well in place for its big year.

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#19 A first for Sally - in the car on a train! But where can you do that?

ANSWER: No, I am not driving. This unique Slovenian shortcut through tunnels entails loading our car on a train.

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#20 These troubadours perform in a city that was badly damaged by war a couple of decades ago.

ANSWER: Dubrovnik, Croatia, suffered badly during the 1990s conflict. Now it gladly welcomes visitors.

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#21 The location of the meal with those breads in #12. What is unusual about the river?

ANSWER: This is Blagaj in Bosnia where the turbulent river Buna sources from an underground spring in a cave about 200 metres away.

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#22 Can you guess the country where you most often meet people like these?

ANSWER: Romani is a commonly accepted name for these intinerant people seen here in Romania.

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#23 We enjoyed a meal with this view, south of a walled city fortified by the Venetians.

ANSWER: Kotor is a walled city on the Adriatic coast at Montenegro. This is just south of the city, on the fjiord-like gulf.

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#24 You may recognise the wall of this fortified town, but what is the island we are heading to?

ANSWER:  Yes, this is the sea-wall of busy Dubrovnik city, but the nearby island, Locrum, is a peaceful getaway from tourist crowds.

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#25 Popular with tourists, but which town shares the bay with this island?

ANSWER: Gospa Island and its church is one of two island churches in the Gulf of Kotor, Montenegro.

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#26 Remote and mountainous - the north of this country is some of the most rugged in Europe.

ANSWER: Still in Montenegro, on the edge of the Tara River Canyon in the country's far north, one of the world's deepest gorges. 

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#27 Don't believe the colour of this water? It's real - but where is it?

ANSWER: This bridge is in the small town of Most, which means bridge. It is in Western Slovenia, in lush agricultural land.

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#28 A famous bridge. But what is it called?

ANSWER: This famous bridge is the 16th-century Stari Most, or 'old bridge' in Mostar, Bosnia. Destroyed during the 1990s wars, it is now fully restored.

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#29 Thousands visit this town each year, and many rub this toe for luck. But whose is it?

ANSWER: Gregory of Nin was a tenth-century Croatian bishop. His huge statue is just outside Split's city wall where people rub his toe for luck.

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#30 What is unusual about this clock? Where is it and why is it different?

ANSWER: Overlooking the Danube in Novi Sad, Serbia, the clock's long and short hands were swapped so fishermen could read the time more easily.

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#31 Castles abound on this stretch of coastline north of which city?

ANSWER: This is the 'kastella' region across the bay from Split in Croatia.

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#32 Mountain sheep in front of a hotel with an appropriate name. But where is it?

ANSWER: This is in north-east Montenegro, where you'll find some of the most rugged ranges in Europe.

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#33 It's thirsty work being a travel photographer. Gordon gets a drink in which city square?

ANSWER: This is the huge decorative water fountain in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

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#34 Which country calls this stretch of beaches a 'riviera'?

ANSWER: This was the view from our table at dinner in Opatija, west of Rijeka, Croatia.

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#35 Oh dear! A parking fine - but which town has this crazy system?

ANSWER: Why has no other cty council thought of this? In Zadar, Croatia if you don't buy a parking voucher, the warden will fine you. How much? Just the cost of a day's parking!

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#36 Use your eyes and this one is easy to solve.

ANSWER: The brochure reveals that this is Split, Croatia, and a local dish worth trying.

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#37 Rounding a corner we discovered these gentlemen relaxing on the job. But, where?

ANSWER: Leaving Sighasoara, Romania, early one morning we encountered this pair of friendly shepherds.

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#38 If you think these masks are scary, this place is even more so.

ANSWER: Bran Castle, south of Brasov, Romania, is a must-see for those with a liking for scary stories, and Dracula-alia.

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#39 A town with a three-letter name produces a four-letter product.

ANSWER: Nin, north of Zadar in Croatia, has been producing salt for centuries.

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#40 A university town with a small clue in the background.

ANSWER: You need good eyes to see the Hungarian flag on the building behind this square in the university town of Szeged, south of Budapest.

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#41 We asked for bread - and got this. What is in the bowl?

ANSWER: The bread was handmade and cooked to order and served with local cheese and fresh local olive oil and garlic, in Sibenik, Croatia.

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#42 An island getaway with a view that Greeks, Romans, Normans and Moors may have enjoyed.

ANSWER: Sicily, and island that is part of Italy, but in some ways so individual.

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#43 Gordon enjoys his soup-in-a-loaf at a small hotel restaurant in which country?

ANSWER: This hearty filler was at Horeii Restaurant in Sibiu, Transylvania, in Romania.

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#44 There is water on the ground in this famous square because any moment the fountains will shoot up again.

ANSWER: Sibiu is one of several Transylvanian cities that should not be missed when visiting Romania.

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#45 This beach is close to which island capital?

ANSWER: Porticello beach is near to Palermo, the capital city of Sicily which is locataed on the northern side of the island.

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#46 Fortresses are everywhere in this country, but this is in a town linked with blood.

ANSWER: This view is from the fortress at Sighasoara, Transylvania, in Romania.

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#47 The world's only outdoor book market is huge and is packed away every night.

ANSWER: Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, is a modern and efficient city, and this market is a must-see for book-lovers.

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#48 We found this unusual waterfront building in our travels on which island?

ANSWER: At first glance this over-water extravaganza at Mondello, north-west of Palermo, appears to be a top hotel, but it is in fact a restaurant. 

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#49 A big hint here with the name of this wine house.

ANSWER: Diocletian was a 4th-century Roman emperor whose palace is the core of today's old city of Split in Croatia.

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#50 Not far away a coffee shop serving the best flat whites we found on the trip.

ANSWER: This is Cafe D16 where the barista is meticulous about getting it all right! Opposite the tiny grassy square with washing hanging out to dry.

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#51 Reminiscent of Venice because it was once ruled by the Venetians even though separated by a sea.

ANSWER: Trogir is a pocket-sized walled city close to Split airport.

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#52 These cascades are the pride of the country in which they are found, and a playground for families.

ANSWER: Kravice waterfalls, Bosnia, are just the place you would like to spend the day, and many locals and tourists do just that.

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#53 Not a pool, not a skating rink, but a sunset gathering point. Where is it?

ANSWER: Unique and architect-designed, Zadar's Greeting to the Sun, in Croatia, is a playground for young and old at any time of day.

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#54 These strange limestone peaks are in which sea?

ANSWER: Located just off Scopello, Sicily, these 'islands' are in the Tyrrhenian Sea, which is part of the Mediterranean Sea.

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#55 The name of the town is in this picture, but do you know where it is?

ANSWER: Lovran is at the far-end of Croatia's Opatija Riviera, a very beautiful part of the country.

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#56 This waterside playground is alongside a very famous river, but it is too cold and fast to swim in.

ANSWER: That is the mighty Danube making yet another appearance. complete with a beach. at Novi Sad, Serbia.

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#57 A sweet-smelling finale to this quiz. Don't be fooled, look closely.

ANSWER: We found these at a stall near the old bridge in Mostar, Bosnia, despite the lavender bags which came from Croatia.

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How did you go? Did you  get a perfect score? 

 


These pictures are just a small sample of places explored by Sally & Gordon Hammond during their recent Eastern European journey. Watch out in the next few months for full stories about each of the 13 amazing countries they visited.

Text, photos and concept: Sally Hammond

Good luck with your guesses, and come back later in the week for the answers.

Video: Gordon Hammond

 

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