Where the Sun Sets: Morocco Travel

Kongo recently finished a 10-day visit to Morocco. If this country is on your bucket list it might be worthwhile to read on.  Kongo will clue you in on his latest advice for visiting this magical country. Morocco is known as the place where the sun sets.  It’s the west.  In ancient times Morocco was literally the end of the world.  The Romans called it Mauretania and they had a thriving colony here until the middle of the second century.  Before that were the Berber tribes and they’re still here.  Portuguese and Spanish left their influence in the Age of Exploration…

Roman Morocco

Rising from the fertile plain north of the city of Meknes in Morocco stands the remains of the Roman city of Volubilis.  Volubilis was the capital of the Roman state of Mauretania which passed to Roman control after the fall of Carthage in 146 B.C.  It remained under Roman control until it fell to rebellious Berber tribes in 285 A.D.  Other pressures on the empire prevented Rome from retaking the city and they basically gave up on it.  The town remained occupied until the 11th century when Fez became the predominant center of power in the Islamic dynasty in Morocco. The…

Phantom Monkeys of the Opera

Long time readers will recall that Kongo is a bit of an opera buff.  He also likes theater and his all time, never to be exceeded, favorite is Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1988 musical Phantom of the Opera, based on the Gaston Leroux novel written in 1910 and inspired by the magnificent Opéra Garnier in Paris.  So naturally, when Kongo visited Paris a few weeks ago a trip to this icon of France was a high note of his visit.  Kongo has seen Phantom in London (three times), New York, Washington, DC, San Diego, and Abu Dhabi so being able to scamper up the Grand…

Secret Passages of Paris

Monkeys love secrets and scattered about Paris in the 1st and 2nd Arrondissements are nearly two dozen hidden passageways that seem to escape the crush of tourists in the shops along Rue de Rivoli.  These passages were the shopping malls of the 18th and 19th century and at one time there were more than 150 of them in Paris.  The ones that remain today have been restored to their original glory and offer a glimpse into the past and the promise of hidden secrets and spirits of those Parisians who walked these wonderful places hundreds of years ago. Mrs. Kongo…

Kiev Tour

Kongo did a full day touring Kiev today and now he’s a tired little monkey. Oksana, his tour guide, took him through squares, caves, monasteries, cathedrals, Golden Gates, Metro rides, squares, presidential palaces, some more churches, across the river, a slew of monuments, and a heavy dose of Soviet architecture. Whew. The picture above is St. Andrew’s Cathedral at night.