Antwerp, Belgium – Photographs

Golden

 

I am discovering new and fascinating things about the evolution, of both my travel philosophy and my photography… While I still believe that visiting the “iconic” landmarks is important..

Antwerp Palace Square

 

I am finding myself wandering through the lesser known avenues of a city more and more..  Sure, I still make time to see the well known touristy locations.. I mean, can you really go to Antwerp and NOT see the Cathedral of our Lady?

Cathedral-Up

 

Cathedral of Our Lady 1

 

or the Medieval Fort, Het Steen, along the river?

Het Steen 2

 

 

But, let’s be honest here, I travel for a couple of reasons.. exploration of new places and cultures AND taking photos that can be sold as prints for my fine art gallery, travel and blog articles and expanding my portfolio 

Golden De Wilde Zee

Ok, so I am doing a bit of self-promotion..there is nothing wrong with that..I mean, after all, who else is going to promote my work..

Anyway..back to Antwerp.. We originally started this trip in Amsterdam. The trip by rail to Antwerp varies depending on which train system you use.. Thalys is the high speed international train and runs direct from Schipol to Antwerp in about an hour and 15 minutes..

The Intercity train leaves every hour, is only a slightly longer ride (2 hrs) and is less expensive. This is the train we took.. These tickets can be bought at the Central Train Station in Amsterdam or the station at Schipol Airport.. Be aware that there is a connection in Rotterdam for this choice..

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Trust me.. the train is a lot better than it looks from the outside. It is clean inside, the seats are wide and comfortable and have a fold down tray..

Either way, you arrive in Antwerp and the Central Train Station.. seems to be a theme in Europe.. the main train station is almost called “Central” …

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This is a big, beautiful, and sprawling train station… and you can easily spend an hour here just taking photos.. so grab a 2 Euro Belgian waffle and explore a bit.. It’s well worth it.

It is a long leisurely walk from here to the center.. but you will pass through the diamond district, parks.. see churches and galleries…shopping galore..on your way. Exploration is a good thing..

Antwerp - Face Antwerp-Old & New

 

The center square is where you will find the Cathedral of our Lady.. numerous restaurants, and chocolate shops.. Belgian row houses, statues and monuments

3 Points Antwerp-Center 1

Antwerp - Center Shops

 

 

But my favorite places are the back streets.. narrow, cobblestoned and virtually deserted..which is a shame.  There are myriads of quaint little shops featuring hand made items, food and beer… Not too mention, almost no people.  These are where my favorite photos come from.. daytime, black and white..

Bikes along the Wall

 

or in color

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Hidden gems and colorful graffiti around every corner..

Nightime shots, crafted in black and white, and my weird digitally manipulated art are my absolute dream photos..

Walking Bridge Cafe with History Six Lamps De Wilde Zee

 

Sometimes, as above, they are added to the sales gallery… some are sellable but more just for fun.. 🙂

Fun Fries

 

Antwerp, Belgium.. a great city to explore..a beautiful city to photograph..

HAPPY TRAVELS!!

 

Traveling as a Lifestyle

I never realized how much fun traveling can be.. exciting… mind-bending.. enlightening..

Valley(Pr)

I worked for almost 30 years as an electrician in the USA, mostly in Colorado, but all over really..  I did what most employed people in the States do.. I worked for a whole year waiting to accrue that coveted week-long (sometimes 2) reprieve and get out and go somewhere on vacation. These trips could be as far as the Caribbean, Mexico, Canada or as close as the next city.  Anything and anywhere as long as I was not at work..

Then an amazing thing happened..  I decided to broaden my horizons.. I decided to take a chance. I decided to explore.  Damn the economy..full speed ahead..

Adjoined

I applied for and was hired by a contract company doing maintenance work overseas..at US Embassies, of all places, with a 2 year contract that could be extended up to 2 more years before you have to move to another post.. Currently, I am in Kyiv, Ukraine and having the time of my life..

Andrew's Descent

Andrew’s Descent

It is an easy city to fly in and out of from Boryspil International airport and, for the past 3 1/2 years, cities in Europe (with the occasional trip to Turkey or the UAE) have been calling me almost monthly..

Sophia Hagia-Istanbul (1)

Water Wheel - Prague

There are 196 countries in the world…unless of course you don’t include Tawain.. some countries do and some don’t..so let’s just include for grins..  That’s 196.. at one vacation a year to a new country..well, do the math..That’s right – 196 years to see them all..

As a US citizen and passport holder, I can visit 174 of them either without a visa or a visa upon arrival. It’s actually a little more complicated than that and over time, I will try to explain all the differences..

But for now.. just think..174 countries..  Right now, I am averaging a new country/city a month.. short trips of 3 – 5 days every month..  That’s still 14 years to see all of them.

Parliment Building in Budapest, Hungary from the south side of the river.

Parliament Building in Budapest, Hungary from the south side of the river.

14 years! 

Handlebars BW Red Leaves at Lake

 

Of course, living in Ukraine is a treat as well..and exploring this wonderful and beautiful country is an experience unto itself.. If no “out of country experience” presents itself, I spend weekends strolling through Kyiv or one of the myriad of historic sites in the vicinity.. Babi Yar is here.. Bykivnia Gravesites.. some of the oldest churches in Europe are here..

DSC_8806 Lavra Spring

St. Sophia's

St. Sophia’s

St. Michael's Golden Domed Monastery and Mykhailivska Square

St. Michael’s Golden Domed Monastery and Mykhailivska Square

Lavra

 

My world view has changed… my prejudices are disappearing… Maybe eventually those will be gone completely.

For now.. Rome awaits (2nd time to Rome)…this time with a side trip to Florence and Pisa.. My photography skills have improved so maybe this time the photos will do it justice..

Happy Travels!!

PHOTOGRAPHY AS ART

 

 

Canals of Amsterdam

Boats and Cars

Amsterdam…City of canals, boats and bicycles..

Bridges of Bikes

 

 

Last week found us strolling along the many canals of this beautiful city.. I honestly do not think I have ever seen so many bikes in my life.. But I came to see the waterways.. the myriad of canal houses..

Houseboats Central Station with Tour Boat Canal with Church

 

Churches and clock towers adorned the small squares … people and bikes crowed the bridges and sidewalks..

Tourist Info at Central Station Tour to Clock Tower Clock Tower on Canal

 

The weather was pleasant…the crowds abundant

Handlebars BW

 

A wonderful city .. definitely worth a dding to your personal bucket list…

Happy Travels!

PHOTOGRAPHY AS ART

Walking around Bila Tserkva – Photos

Just thought I would add some more images from the day trip to Bila Tserkva.. It is a small city about 70 km southeast of Kyiv, Ukraine.. A lovely place to spend a day shooting..  There are several churches of note.. a beautiful river .. parks and memorials …markets and coffee shops..

It is easily reached by marshrutka in about an hour and a half for 30 uah… The mini buses leave about every 20 minutes from near the Palats Ukraine metro station.

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Travel with Steve                     Photography as Art

 

Churches of Bila Tserkva

The Saint Mary Magdalene Monastery sits high on the hill overlooking the Ros River in Bila Tserkva.. about 80 km southeast of Kiev, Ukraine.

 

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The church was built in the 18th century. It was the only church built outside  the center of the city. During the Soviet regime, it was one of the few active churches in the city.

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The Church of St. John the Baptist is located on Zamkovaya Hill and was buit in the early 1800’s by Count Branitsky in honor of his son. The church today is a well known place to attend chamber and organ music concerts.

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It is possible that the church was built on the site of another church which had given Bila Tserkva – lterally “white church” – it’s name.

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The Cathedral of the Transconfiguration is the main Orthodox church in the city. It was built to replace the dilapidated St. Nicholas Church, by Countess A. Branitsky.

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Bila Tserka is easily reached from Kyiv by mini bus for about 30 uah ($3.00 USD). They leave from metro stop Palats Ukraine. While there is no set time table, you can plan on a bus leaving every 20 minutes or so. It takes about an 1 1/2 hours so it is perfect for a day trip.

 

Travel with Steve   – Travel Links, Photographs, Reviews

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Happy Travels!