Berkeley, CA

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Our first stop on this mini-vacation was Berkeley, CA.  The city of Berkeley sits on the east shore of the San Francisco Bay.  Berkeley is home to the oldest campus in the University of California system, the University of California, Berkeley, which was founded in 1868.

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Bruges, Belgium

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While visiting the city of Brussels, we took a day tour to the city of Bruges, located west of Brussels near the coast of the North Sea.  Bruges is considered to be one of the best preserved medieval towns in the world and due to its canals, is referred to as the “Venice of the North.”  Bruges is in the Flanders section of Belgium where Dutch is the primary language.

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Innsbruck, Austria

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Maria-Theresien-Strasse

Innsbruck sits in a valley with mountains to its north and south and the Inn River running through it.  Just on the other side of those mountains is Germany to the north and Italy to the south.  With relatively accessible mountain passes in both directions and a bridge across the Inn River (thus the name “Innsbruck”), this town became a very important trade route.  Innsbruck is the capital of the Austrian Federal State of Tirol (or Tyrol).  This region was much larger but the area of South Tirol was ceded to Italy at the conclusion of World War I.

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Falmouth, MA

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I would describe the shape of Cape Cod as a jester’s shoe extending out into the Atlantic from the southeastern corner of Massachusetts.  We were parked in the Falmouth area, which is near the heel of the jester’s shoe, at the Sippewissett Campground.  We took advantage of the Shining Sea Bikeway which is a 10 mile multi-use path that runs from North Falmouth down to Woods Hole, which is at the tip of the mainland on the heel of the Cape.  You may have heard of Woods Hole since it is home to the Oceanographic Research Institute.

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