Europe’s Best Cemeteries #2

Old Jewish Cemetery – Prague, Czech Republic

The Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague is, rather predictably, a cemetery for old Jews: specifically, those who snuffed it between 1439 and 1787. During this time the Jewish community was kettled into a tiny ghetto, having to stuff their stiffs into a 60-metre-square graveyard, and so over three centuries it was crammed with around 100,000 bodies. Which explains why it has Europe’s highest concentration of tombstones.

FUN FACT!!! Prague’s famous cemetery only survived Nazi occupation because Hitler wanted to preserve it as ‘a museum to an extinct race’.

You can read the whole article – Killing Time in Europe’s Best Cemeteries – in the August edition of stalkingElk

Transdniestr: Last Kid on the Bloc

I’ve recently had a travel article published in the latest issue of Shoestring Travel Magazine. It’s about Transdniestr – the last remaining communist state on the old Eastern bloc – and here’s how it starts:

“1989 was a watershed moment for Europe. It was the year when Poland, after 44 years of stringent Soviet rule, finally turned its back on the communist ideal. This act of defiance was the spark that lit the fire of revolution across Eastern Europe, and within the next three years East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Romania and more than a dozen other socialist states – including Russia itself – had overthrown their respective governments and entered a new era of capitalist democracy. Communism in Europe was dead and buried.

Well, almost buried. For as the world watched Poland and co. march towards a bright new dawn, no-one seemed to notice that one tiny piece of the Eastern Bloc had been left behind…”

If you’d like to read more, simply click here for the whole article. Or you can visit the Shoestring website to read the entire issue for free. I’ve also been commissioned to write for the next Shoestring Magazine, so watch this space.