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Helsinki grew up around its busy harbor, overlooked by the gleaming white Lutheran Cathedral.

Helsinki -- Europe's youngest and northernmost capital city -- feels like an outpost of Europe. While it lacks the cutesy cobbles of Copenhagen, the aristocratic setting of Stockholm, or the futuristic vibe of Oslo, Helsinki holds its own among Nordic capitals with its creative spirit, zest for architecture and design, and a steamy love of saunas.

Perhaps the best way to understand Helsinki's origins is to take the...

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Do your research on the big aggregator sites, but then book directly with a family-run hotel — like this one in Prague — for a glimpse into the local culture.

I used to travel with absolutely no hotel reservations. Europe 30 years ago was relatively ramshackle, things were cheaper and because fewer people could afford to travel for fun, there was much less competition for budget rooms. I could make decisions on the go, show up in a new town and improvise my accommodations. But the tourism boom and rise of the Internet have changed everything. Today, booking hotels in advance is a critical part of trip planning -- and a fun way to...

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As mountain gorillas foraged, visitors watched — Rwanda. Photo by Marilyn Marx Adelman

Dear Globetrotter:Welcome to the 512th issue of your monthly foreign-travel magazine, the one that showcases travelers' experiences, knowledge and opinions. Any subscriber can write in, and we print no articles or news about destinations in the US. Just anywhere else!

Someone reading this magazine would benefit from something you learned on your last trip. The littlest thing might save someone time or money. Jot off a quick email so we can share it.

In addition to...

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Brazil’s Santa Catarina guinea pigs live on a 10-acre stretch of land on a small island and may have the smallest range of any mammal.

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I would like to share valuable information recently supplied by two travel insurance sources.

First up is a table of advice from InsureMyTrip (800/487-4722, www.insuremytrip) to which I have added some information and tips of my own [in italics — Editor].

Top Reasons Travel Insurance Claims are Delayed or Denied

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Save your places of interest with the star button.

After my 2-part article "They're Called Smartphones for Good Reason" ran in the February and March 2018 issues, a number of readers wrote with suggestions and comments about using smartphones for saving critical itinerary information and navigating with maps, especially while offline.

The following are the most helpful tips, along with my own comments. All my comments pertain to using an iPhone with iOS version 11.4.1 and the latest update of Google Maps as of 8/8/18....

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Wave Rock, near Hyden, Western Australia, is 110 meters long. Photos by David Bentley

An Aussie friend, David Bentley, recently completed a coast-to-coast journey solo from northeastern Australia to the far southwest in his faithful Troopy (78 Series Toyota Land Cruiser). This article is edited from his daily reports. — Randy Keck

Day 9 (May 15, 2018) — Having departed Kalgoorlie, I'm currently about halfway down the Holland Track, which runs from Coolgardie to Hyden in the southwest of Western Australia. It's another iconic 4WD track which has been...

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The annual Dingle Food Festival hosts around 60 food and drink stalls and welcomes thousands of hungry foodies along its “Taste Trail.”

Irish cuisine has long been the fodder of jokes -- a kind of penance to suffer through in order to enjoy the people, music and lush scenery of the Emerald Isle. But that's an outdated notion: Travelers today find fresh, inventive, flavorful meals there -- and many Irish towns are working to establish themselves as foodie destinations.

Long considered the land of potatoes, Ireland's diet once reflected the country's dire economic circumstances. Though...

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