Let's Go / Best Bets
See the hair-raising HunsAttila the Hun. Even today the so- named “Scourge of God” is associated with fear. In the fifth century, this king and his nomads actually drove entire populations in front of them, playing an important role in the great population shift during this pre-medieval era.
Through Jan. 6, the Historical Museum in Speyer, Germany, looks at the world of the Huns with its exhibition “Attila and the Huns.” It is the first time, the museum says, that such broad and deep attention has been given to these equestrian warriors.
Through reconstructions, hands-on demonstrations and new media you can explore this world. Among the exhibits are the warriors’ weapons, reconstructions of a Kyrgyz dwelling and nomadic wagons, and a plastic reconstruction on the Huns’ deformed skulls, a practice performed with boards and bandages on children, which created a frightening appearance.
The museum is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The entry price for the exhibition is 10 euros for adults, 7 euros for children 6 to 17 years old.
Go east by motorcycleIf you’ve wanted to do a motorcycle tour around the Slovenian Alps, Croatia’s Adriatic coast, Czech Republic, Hungary or Montenegro, check out Adriatic Moto Tours. The company is Slovenian-owned with trips running spring through October. You can take a guided trip or a preplanned tour on your own.
The seven-day Slovenia trip, for example, starts in the medieval town of Skofia Loka and takes off for the Alps. You stay overnight in Jeruzalem (named by Crusaders) and then travel through vineyards to Sezana, where you can visit Predjama Castle and the Skocjan caves, which are UNESCO World Heritage sites.
The next days you visit the Lipizzaner stud farm and travel along the turquoise Soca River. In the town of Bovec, you stay overnight and go whitewater rafting and hiking or relax by the river.
The next day is a ride through 50 switchbacks over the Vrsic Pass and down to the Bohini Lake. On the final day you explore the resort area of Bled, then head back to Skofia Loka and the Slovenian capital, Ljubljana.
The price of the guided tour depends on the bike you rent and if you ride solo. For example, double occupancy, two people on a BMW F 650 GS pay 1,110 euros per person. The same two people would pay 850 euros each when riding their own bikes. The price includes the bike and insurance, guide, support van for luggage, overnight accommodations, breakfasts, three dinners, airport transfers and maps. An unguided tour costs 10 to 20 percent less.
The support van also will carry those who prefer not to ride motorcycles.
More details are at www.smtours.com.
Send announcements of tours, military discounts or other special travel deals to email@example.com.
Best BetsBELGIUM: “The 7 Sins of the Capital” is the theme of Brussels’ all-night White Night cultural festival, which hits the streets Saturday night. The festival program includes performances, visual and multimedia arts events, concerts, parties and food and wine scattered in the seven districts of the city. For the full program, go to www.nuitblanche07.be/spip.php?rubrique27.
GERMANY: Heidelberg’s center will be abuzz with activity Saturday during the annual Old Town autumn festival. New this year are flea markets near the Old Bridge, courtyard of the Kurpfälzisches Museum and private sellers in Ziegelgasse, Kleine Mantelgasse and Dreikönigstrasse. Shoppers also can check out crafts markets and a medieval market, plus listen to concerts and enjoy other street entertainment. The flea markets are set up at 7 a.m. with the other festival events starting at 11 a.m.
If you can’t make it to Munich’s Oktoberfest, try Stuttgart’s Cannstatt beer festival, which begins Friday and runs through Oct. 14. Quaff mugs of beer in one of nine festival tents to the sounds of oompah music, enjoy carnival rides and shop at a hucksters market. On Sunday, a historical parade runs through the streets of the Cannstatter Wasen at 11 a.m. Wednesdays are family days with discount prices, and on the last night fireworks will fill the sky. The festival is open noon to 11 p.m. daily (to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays). Its Web site is www.wasen.info (in German).
SCOTLAND: Set in the Glen Fiddich (Valley of the Deer) in the Highlands, Dufftown claims to be the malt whisky capital of the world, an industry flourishing due to its location near excellent water sources for distilleries. Through Monday, it celebrates its title with its annual Speyside Whisky Festival. Among the events are bus and walking tours of the distilleries, whisky auctions, nosing and tasting events, guided tours through the whisky museum, traditional ceilid and concerts, crafts show and railway rides. Details at www.dufftown.co.uk/autumn_speyside_whisky_festival_2007.htm.
— Jayne Traendly