Report Cards

From Trier, GERMANY, April 21, 2007. . .

Hotel Pieper (Thebäerstrasse 39, Trier; phone 0651 23008, is a very nice small hotel in Trier. Near the pedestrian zone of the city, it’s within walking distance of the bus and train station and a 10-minute walk from the Porta Nigra. The Church of St. Paulin, a beautiful baroque-style church, is a 3-minute walk from the hotel.

The staff is very friendly, although most do not speak English. The rooms each have TV (mostly German channels), shower and hair dryer, and the price includes a very nice breakfast. €45 (about $62) single.

• You can see all of Trier’s Roman ruins in a day if you are determined, but don’t try to do it in one day as you will get distracted by all the many sights and the shopping.

• Instead of buying a ticket at each location, buy a pass for €6.10, which gives you admission to the Porta Nigra, the Kaiserthermen, the Amphitheater, the Viehmarktthermen, the Klause Kastel-Staadt and the Roman Villa Otrang (Note: you need a car to get to the last two.)

• In the evening, a stroll or bicycle ride (you can rent bicycles; ask at your hotel) along the Moselle River is nice or, better yet, enjoy a glass of regional wine while you take a leisurely cruise on the river (€7). The cruises depart often, and reservations are not necessary unless you are with a large group.

Trier is a beautiful city and you could easily get lost in admiring the architectural details of all the buildings. So get a glass of wine or a cold beer at one of the many outdoor cafés and soak in the local color.

— Roseanne Sherman, Melbourne, FL

From Sorrento, ITALY, March 26, 2007. . .

• We recommend the restaurant Il Leone Rosso, or The Red Lion (Via Marziale 25, Sorrento; phone 081 8073089, Come out of the train station, turn left, and Via Marziale is the first street on the right.

We have spent seven nights in Sorrento and eaten here five of them. Great food and service.

We had the Tourist Menu once (€16, or near $21, each), which included a pasta (we had cannolini), a contorno (we had a large salad), an entrée (I had fresh fish with cherry tomatoes; my husband had veal scallopini) and a house cake. All of these were very good. The portions were reasonable.

Then we started ordering off the menu and sharing so we could try as many dishes as possible. Antipasti ranged from €6 to €10 ($8-$13), with Parmigiana di Melanzane (eggplant stuffed with mozzarella, cheese and tomatoes) at €6 and Insalata Maxi (greens, mozzarella, tomatoes, tuna and corn) at €6. Primi Piatti ranged from €5 to €15. We had Frutti di Mar (fresh pasta with seafood) for €10; Risotto alla Pescatora (rice, shrimp, squid, mixed seafood), €10; Pappardelle Porcini e Gamberetti (pasta with wild mushrooms and shrimp), €11, and Gnocchi alla Sorrentina (potato dumplings with mozzarella and tomato sauce), €6. Secondi Piatti ranged from €8 to €15. We had Scaloppa di Vitello alla Sorrentina (veal with mozzarella and fresh tomatoes) for €8.

With our meals we always had a bottle of either red or white “local wine” for €8. The other wines were a lot more expensive.

— Jane Tumey, Hebron, KY

From Calcutta, INDIA, March 17, 2007. . .

• Our tour guide in Calcutta was Amitava Mukhopadhyay (phone [033] 26780786 or mobile 9339099297 or e-mail It was a great half-day city tour that got us among the people and gave us a good feel for the city, both residential and tourists spots (Jain temple). I especially enjoyed the markets and the Ganges, as well as Amitava’s commentaries.

I contacted him while on an Advantage Travel tour through their tour guide Das. The cost was $30 plus tip for each of us.

— Neal Pollock, Arlington, VA