Land of hay bales, local cheese and more animals than people, this region stole away my heart.
Per Tolosa totjorn mai.
Occitan for “For Toulouse, always more”
Known as the Ville Rose (Pink City), Toulouse is aptly named for the rose-colored bricks that make up the facades of the city’s oldest buildings, even as l’ancien meets with the new.
For me, it was a city with a certain well-understood charm – a getaway for French natives in the North in search of a pause from a more pretentious Paris perhaps, or a badly needed kickstart to the everyday routine from those in the surrounding sleepier southwestern towns.
Modernity sits side by side with history as you stroll from the busy midtown walkways to duck into tiny pink cobblestoned backstreets leading towards the river. Everyone headed perpetually towards the river. The site of “Toulouse Plage” for the month (sand and beach games brought in for August), the riverside makes for a cool antidote to the August heat. I loved the outdoor markets, the streetside booksellers, the waterfront cafes, and quiet confidence of the folks there. No in-your-face-flash required, they understood well what their city has to offer.
Vibrant city-scapes? Lively mix of Eastern and Western tradition and culture? Hundred-year-old temples sandwiched between skyscrapers? Hong Kong – you really do offer a little bit of everything.
Never have I fallen for a city so fast. From first arriving and crossing a bridge into what appeared to be an amalgam of all great metropolises combined, to discovering the islands that make up this energetic hotspot – Hong Kong hooked me early and kept me wanting more.
New York City is renowned for its vibrancy, lightening-paced lifestyle, and constant flow of people on its streets. But its energy also surges into the subways below. One talented photo-blogger took the difficult lighting and less than prime conditions and captured the underbelly of the city over the course of a few years with a photo a day, rendering it beautiful through his lens.
All images by Travis Ruse