Constantine exhibitionAfter he returned from Britain, having been declared “Augustus” (emperor) following the death of his father in York, Constantine made the town of Augusta Treverorum (Trier, Germany) his main home for six years.

Until Nov. 4, you can explore the life of one of Rome’s greatest emperors and the era in which he lived at a major exhibition in Trier. The 685 exhibits loaned from 160 museums for “Constantine the Great” are showing in three locations. The Municipal Museum Simeonstift looks at the impact of Constantine in the Middle Ages and early modern era. The Bishop’s museum in the cathedral explores the relationship between the emperor and the Christian Church. And the Archaeological Museum focuses on the man as emperor and his politics.

The city is offering a special package for the event, “The Emperor Returns.” It includes two nights’ accommodations, breakfasts, combination ticket for all Constantine exhibitions, a city tour, cocktail and three-course Roman meal.

The cost is 185.50 euros per person, double occupancy. Singles pay 255.50 per person.

For reservations, call (+49) (0) 651/999-0.

Trier’s Website is The exhibition’s Web site is

Skaneleden trailsBefore the winter months, you might want to head north to Skåne in south Sweden and hike part of the 620-mile Skaneleden trail. Its Web site describes the countryside as part of the Central European deciduous tree belt and home to a variety of wildlife. The landscape includes hills, streams and beaches, some home to old Viking sites.

There are five trails divided into 80 hikes. Camping sites and shelters are located along the trails.

For details, go to the Web at

Best BetsBELGIUM: If you’re near Malmedy on Wednesday, the Brotherhood of Giant Omelettes invites you to the festival of the giant omelet. Some 10,000 eggs will be fried in a four-meter pan on Römerplatz to create the world’s largest omelet, also to be enjoyed by visitors. The chefs begin at 5 p.m. with a grill party and later a ball will be held under lanterns. Malmedy’s Web site is

CZECH REPUBLIC: If he were alive, Napoleon Bonaparte would be celebrating his 295th birthday Wednesday. In honor of the French emperor, the town of Slavkov, east of Brno, is holding the Napoleonic Days this weekend. Slavkov is appropriate as it’s located only a few miles from the site of the historic 1805 Battle of Austerlitz, considered one of Napoleon’s greatest victories. On the program are a field camp with costumed soldiers drilling, fights and exhibitions of military strategy, a historical market, an international pétanque tournament (a form of boules) and tours of the Austerlitz castle.

GERMANY: The Romans return to Trier through the weekend for the annual “Brot und Spiel” (Bread and Games) festival. On Friday from 7 p.m. and on the weekend from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., the grounds of the imperial spa (Kaiserthermen) will be filled with a Roman camp and soldiers, an exercise field with Romans drilling on foot and horseback, and a Roman market. Emperor Constantine’s gladiators fight each night at 9:30 (also at 5 on Saturday) in the city’s amphitheater and from 9 p.m., a sound-and-light show colors the gates of the spa grounds. On Saturday and Sunday, the invasion begins at 10 a.m. with a march of the legionnaires from the Porta Nigra to the Kaiserthermen. Tickets to the Kaiserthermen cost 5 euros for adults and are free for children up to age 13. Tickets to the gladiator fights cost 12.50 euros for adults and 8 euros for children. Details at (in German). Trier’s Web site is

Motorcycle riders and lovers will want to head to Geiselwind (southeast of Würzburg on the A3) through the weekend for the annual Music and Bike Weekend. On the program are an exclusive preview and test drives of the 2008 Harley Davidson models, bike and car shows, professional stunt and acrobatics shows, a Burnout Bike and Car Contest, drag races, body painting, wet T-shirt contests, live music and beer. Camp sites are available. More details at (in German).

IRELAND: Head to Killorglin in Country Clare Friday through the weekend for the Puck Fair, one of the country’s oldest “traveling shows.” Its origins supposedly go beyond written history, and legends have been spun about its beginnings, from a goat (Puck) warning the village about approaching English soldiers to connections with the god Pan. Today’s program is reminiscent of traditional county fairs, with horse and cattle shows, pet shows, a beautiful-baby competition, a circus, food, traditional and contemporary music, and, of course, the craic in the pubs. Details at

ITALY: On July 31, 1225, Massa Marittima Grosseto signed a constitution to became a free city from the bishops. To commemorate the event, the Balestrieri del Girifalco holds a crossbow competition, the Balestro del Girifalco. It begins with a medieval costumed pageant with 150 participants through the city streets to the Piazza del Duomo, where the competition takes place. Eight archers from the city’s three communes try to place an arrow in or close to a target’s center. The winner receives a golden arrow and his team a painted silk banner. Details at

— Jayne Traendly

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